by Will Overton
It’s fun to read mock drafts and run scenarios through your mind, and with the draft approaching there will be a lot of that going around this week. I could make some guesses in a mock draft, but it’d really be just that, guesses. Instead of that I mapped out ideal landing spots for some of the prospects in this draft that I like. These are ideal fits from a fantasy football standpoint, in particular a dynasty football standpoint. Let’s breakdown some potential fits that could lead to long term fantasy success:
Jalen Hurts, QB – Oklahoma
Drafted by Los Angeles Chargers
Everyone is asking the question about which quarterback the Los Angeles Chargers are going to take in the first round, but what if they don’t take one? What if the Chargers go elsewhere at sixth overall and instead take Jalen Hurts in the second round? Hurts has been the biggest question mark at quarterback this draft season with a variety of opinions, but it’s really hard to ignore what he did last season at Oklahoma. He is a dynamic athlete with a great arm and while there are questions about decision making and pocket presence, those can be developed. He isn’t likely a week one starter, but Tyrod Taylor is good enough to run the show for a season while Hurts learns and grows behind him, a fit that makes a lot of sense with a similar play style, just a better arm. This would be a really fun fit to see play out.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB – LSU
Drafted by Tampa Bay Buccaneers
It’s pretty clear who the best receiving back in this draft class is and it’s Clyde Edwards-Helaire. He runs great routes and has impressive hands for a running back. There’s no hiding the fact that Tom Brady has taken a step back in the last couple of years and he relied heavily on running backs who could catch the ball in New England. In Tampa Bay Clyde Edwards-Helaire could easily become Brady’s new James White with a higher upside as a runner. The other perk of Edwards-Helaire landing in Tampa Bay is that he’s also a great pass blocker, which will be a big boon for Brady as well.
Anthony McFarland, RB – Maryland
Drafted by New York Jets
One of my favorite under the radar prospects in this draft class is Anthony McFarland. He is still fairly raw as a talent with work to do in pass protection and having the patience to wait for the holes to open. However he has as much or more big play ability than anyone else in this draft class. McFarland is a blur in the open field, can catch the ball and while undersized has enough strength, particularly if he puts on some added muscle under the guidance of an NFL strength and conditioning coach. I picked the Jets because he could learn and grow while backing up Le’Veon Bell, but the writing is also on the wall that Bell likely won’t be there much longer. I don’t have much faith in Adam Gase as a head coach, but as an offensive mind I do think he can help McFarland develop his natural talent.
Denzel Mims, WR – Baylor
Drafted by Minnesota Vikings
The trade of Stefon Diggs this offseason opened a hole in the Vikings offense that has yet to be addressed, but can’t be ignored. Minnesota still has a strong WR1 in Adam Thielen, but Diggs and Thielen complemented each other really well and the team needs someone who can stretch the field and catch some jump balls. No one fits the mold better than Mims, who wowed everyone at the combine with his 4.38 second 40 (which is incredible for a guy who is 6’3” and 207 lbs.). Mims has some improvements to make, including his route running, but we saw last season with D.K. Metcalf that raw talent can overcome that. I really like Mims long term potential, but if he were to land in Minnesota I think he could be a big fantasy asset right away.
K.J. Hamler, WR – Penn State
Drafted by Dallas Cowboys
This is another example of someone who could step right in and fill a role, possibly two, left vacant for a team. As of right now the Cowboys have not yet re-signed Tavon Austin, and drafting Hamler would mean they wouldn’t have to. At the very least he can step right in and be a dynamic punt returner almost right away in the NFL. At the most Hamler might be able to step in and fill the hole left by Randall Cobb. Dak Prescott relied heavily on Cobb last season to keep the offense moving from the slot, and he needs someone to do the same this year. Hamler was dynamic and as fun as anyone to watch in college, and while I worry about his game translating if he is going to be successful this would be about the most ideal spot for him to come and thrive.
Hunter Bryant, TE – Washington
Drafted by Houston Texans
Bryant is my favorite tight end for fantasy football purposes and it could be huge for him if he lands in Houston. Deshaun Watson has never had the chance to play with a dynamic tight end and Bryant could provide that opportunity in a year where the Texans need another playmaker or two. Bryant is a dynamic receiver who runs excellent routes and has agility and run after the catch ability that rivals a lot of receivers in this class. The Texans still have Darren Fells, but his impact comes blocking and at the goal line, while Bryant can be a big threat between the 20’s.