I participated in the SOFA Classic experts league the other night. I had the 11th pick out of 12 teams in a PPR league. The draft went 18 rounds with standard scoring and four points for a passing TD. We start 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 WR/RB flex, 1 TE, 1 K, 1 DEF with eight bench spots.
With the 11th pick I selected Rashard Mendenhall. He was one of the few backs with no one to cut into his workload on a good offense and is a good bet to reach double-digit TDs.
In round 2, I went with Hakeem Nicks, who I own in almost every league. Health is the main risk, but he’s a stud.
In the next round I took Dez Bryant. This was my exact start in the Sirius XM experts league. Bryant has tremendous upside and I believe he makes the leap Nicks took last season in an explosive offense. Since we only have to start two RBs, I am not concerned about getting RBs early. Receivers are more important since we have to start three and can use one in a flex. I would have taken Felix Jones had he been there.
In round four I went with Santonio Holmes. The Jets will pass more this season and Plaxico Burress will draw attention away from Holmes, who is one of the most talented receivers.
With the 11th pick in round 5 I took a risk with Austin Collie. He has the concussion issues and a knee injury currently. He was one of the best receivers when he played and Peyton Manning loves to target him. Players that I was targeting like Ryan Mathews, Tony Romo, Kenny Britt, and Jermichael Finley all went before me.
Then with the second pick in round 6, it came down to a RB. I felt I could wait on a QB, already had three receivers, and didn’t love a TE yet. I passed on Peyton Manning and debated taking him. I went with Beanie Wells and I am not confident in him. He’s going to carry the load and injuries have really slowed him down and the Cardinals offensive line isn’t great. The RBs were getting thin and I did need a starter, so I am rolling the dice here.
At pick 11 of the seventh round, I was targeting Matt Schaub. He went several picks before me. This is where tough decisions were made. I love Owen Daniels, especially in a PPR league and debated taking him. Tight end is deep this season and felt because of where I was picking with a long stretch between picks that Ben Roethlisberger was a great value and took him. Remember he missed four games last season and put up excellent numbers per game.
In round 8, I passed on Daniels again. Since I didn’t go running backs early, I like to load up on the position in these rounds and took Mike Tolbert, who should get a lot of goal-line carries and third-down work. I was praying Daniels slipped to me next round.
Daniels never made it back and several tight ends went. In round 9, I went with James Starks. Don’t be surprised if he winds up as the starter. Ryan Grant hasn’t looked great and Starks is more explosive.
Finally, it was time for a tight end in Round 10. I might have taken him earlier than usual, but I was afraid someone might start taking a backup. Jared Cook has great upside and will be highly targeted in the Titans offense.
In Round 11 with pick 131, I went for an upside play in Raiders wide receiver Denarius Moore. He has impressed everyone in camp and he has a good chance to start.
It was time for a backup QB and Mark Sanchez was my pick the next round.
A lot of the backup running backs started flying off the board and I took Bernard Scott in round 13. The Bengals seem reluctant to give him more touches, but he’s better than Cedric Benson.
With pick 158 in round 14, I went with Andre Roberts. He should start opposite Larry Fitzgerald and find himself with a lot of man coverage. He came on late last season.
I was eyeing Greg Olsen as my backup TE, but he went so it was Jermaine Gresham in round 15. Expect him to get a lot of targets.
The next round I took Jerome Simpson followed by the Chiefs defense and Josh Brown.