Thursday, October 6, 2022

2022 Fantasy Football Draft Prep: Cheat sheets, updated rankings and our favorite late-round targets

2022 Fantasy Football Draft Prep: Cheat sheets, updated rankings and our favorite late-round targets

It’s almost time to draft and you’ll find every resource you need here

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There was a time when Dameon Pierce was a fantastic late-round target for your Fantasy drafts, but that time ended long before Pierce punctuated a productive first drive of the team’s preseason game against the 49ers on Thursday with a touchdown. 

Pierce went 77th in a mock draft we did Thursday afternoon, and I reckon that’s going to look like a huge bargain this weekend. Because, I’m expecting to see Pierce drafted in the first five rounds moving forward, and while I hate to be the stick in the mud … that’s just too expensive for my blood.

I wrote about my expectations for Pierce and why I just can’t get too excited about him even as the lead back for the Texans … mostly because he’s the lead back for the Texans. Lovie Smith does tend to give his RB1 a ton of work, but Pierce enters the NFL as a fourth-round pick who peaked at 106 carries in four college seasons, so … it’s hard to project a massive role there. And this was the worst offense in football for running backs last year, too, so it’s just a lot working against him.

I didn’t mind that bet when the cost was low, but if he’s going to cost a fifth-round pick, I’m out. 

But there are still plenty of late-round targets out there to consider. Heath Cummings wrote about a bunch of them in his Deep Sleepers for Every Team column Thursday, and I have several more for you in today’s newsletter. These aren’t players who are necessarily going to make an impact in Week 1, but they have upside to make it worth the wait. 

Today’s newsletter also has my updated top-200 rankings, and if you want to see my rankings by position, well, I’m linking to those too, along with everything else you need to get ready for your drafts this weekend. 

And, of course, we have more help from the FFT squad. Our Fantasy Football Today Draft Guide is here and ready to be downloaded, so head here to check that out. And our FFT Draft-A-Thon is coming up next Wednesday, Aug. 31 at 6 p.m. on CBS Sports HQ, and we’ll be live until midnight on our YouTube channel answering your questions all night with the help of some special guests. 

And it’s all to raise money for our friends at St. Jude Children’s Hospital. You can head to our eBay store to bid on chances to play in an FFT listener league and get one-on-one Fantasy advice from myself as well as a bunch of our friends from around the Fantasy Football world, to make sure you’re ready for your draft. Head here to check out what we have available.

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Favorite late-round targets

We’re focusing on players with an ADP outside of the top 120, primarily with an eye on some long-range upside, but I’ll start with a player I think could be surprisingly useful if you need some Week 1 help. For more late-round targets, make sure you check out Heath’s Deep Sleepers for Every Team column from Thursday

  1. Ameer Abdullah, RB, Raiders – ADP: 230.55: Abdullah sat out the last two preseason games and the Raiders are getting rid of Kenyan Drake, so it sure seems like Abdullah is locked in as the pass-catching back here. That’s been a very valuable role in a Josh McDaniels offense in the past, so if you need an early-season fill-in for a PPR league, Abdullah could be sneaky useful. 
  2. Nico Collins, WR, Texans – ADP: 138.07: Collins didn’t do much as a rookie, but he had one fewer red zone target than Brandin Cooks and it wouldn’t be a shock to see the big-bodied receiver emerge as Davis Mills‘ go-to option down there. By all accounts, he’s had a good training camp, and there is very little competition here beyond Cooks. 
  3. Jarvis Landry, WR, Saints – ADP: 141.22: Landry might just be the No. 4 target in New Orleans, but it’s also possible he leads the team in targets early in the season if Michael Thomas‘ hamstring injury lingers and Chris Olave takes a few weeks to get his feet under him. Landry played hurt over the past two seasons for a Browns team that needed him, but we know he can be a useful PPR option when featured. 
  4. Julio Jones, WR, Buccaneers – ADP: 148.13: I’m surprised Jones hasn’t seen more of a bump in cost. Granted, we haven’t heard much about him in camp, but with Chris Godwin still a question mark for the start of the season, he could be in line for a solid role early on. The smart bet is Jones is more of a Rob Gronkowski replacement than anything, but the idea of him actually having room to operate in the red zone with an elite quarterback is pretty enticing. Jones has still been pretty productive when healthy, posting an above average yards per route run in 2021 after having an elite mark in 2020. 
  5. Raheem Mostert, RB, Dolphins – ADP: 157.54: What buzz there has been about the Dolphins backfield in camp has mostly revolved around Chase Edmonds cementing his place as the primary back, but if Mostert is healthy, it wouldn’t be a shock to see him get plenty of work on early downs in an offense he has experience (and success!) in. 
  6. Zamir White, WR, Raiders – ADP: 158.32: You’ll probably have to be more patient with White, but if anything happens to Josh Jacobs – or if the team just sours on him after turning down his fifth-year option – White could be in line for a very healthy role. For all we know, White might already have standalone value given how McDaniels has historically divvied up RB work. 
  7. Jameis Winston, QB, Saints – ADP: 180.32: Winston was off to a better start to his Saints career than you remember, because they just didn’t throw very often. He had a solid 7.3 yards per attempt and 14 touchdowns in seven games and should be in line for a nice boost in volume with a healthier receiving corps. He could be in that Derek Carr/Kirk Cousins range by the end of the season and I wouldn’t be surprised. 
  8. Gerald Everett, TE, Chargers – ADP: 186.78: Donald Parham was getting some buzz early in camp, but he has had trouble getting on the field. Everett’s role as the lead tight end seems locked in to me, and that role saw Jared Cook earn 83 targets last season. I’m willing to bet Everett can best Cook’s 48-564-4 line, and there’s TE1 upside here. 
  9. Eno Benjamin, RB, Cardinals – ADP: 195.91: I’m surprised Benjamin is going as late as he is, because I think there’s a pretty good chance he’s the Cardinals RB2. That may not mean quite as many touches as Chase Edmonds had a year ago, but it could put him one James Conner injury away from being the lead back in an offense that produces a lot of Fantasy points for running backs. And injuries have not been a rare occurrence for Conner in his career. 
  10. Dontrell Hilliard, RB, Titans – ADP: 245.94: Neither Titans running back has much standalone appeal when Derrick Henry is healthy, but I’m surprised Hilliard is being drafted later than Hassan Haskins when they’ve been drafted at all. Hilliard has apparently had an excellent training camp, per The Athletic’s Joe Rexrode, who named him the clear option to have behind Henry. Given that Henry’s an older back coming off a significant injury, Hilliard’s chances of making an impact are probably better than you think. 
  11. Curtis Samuel, WR, Commanders: I can’t give up on Samuel. The last time we saw him healthy he had 1,051 total yards in 15 games with the Panthers, and he was top 10 in the NFL in air yards while adding 19 carries the last time he played with Ron Rivera. There’s competition in the form of rookie Jahan Dotson, but I like Samuel’s post-hype breakout status after a lost first season reuniting with Rivera. 

And now, here’s everything you need to knock out your draft this weekend, with my updated top-200 rankings available at the bottom of the newsletter. I try to keep this newsletter from being a big dump of links, but in this case, utility wins out. Here’s a big dump of links to everything you need to know about: 

Sleepers, Breakouts & Busts

Here’s where we’re planting our flags this season.

QB Preview

RB Preview

WR Preview

TE Preview

Team Previews

Pick-by-Pick Strategies

Mock Drafts

Dynasty Corner

Rankings

Dynasty Quarterback Rankings 8/17

Dynasty Running Back Rankings 8/2

Dynasty Wide Receiver Rankings 8/10

Dynasty Tight End Rankings 8/19

Dynasty Top 150 and Trade Chart 8/24

Dynasty Rookie-Only Rankings 8/24

Tiers

Dynasty Quarterback Tiers 8/18

Dynasty Running Back Tiers 8/3

Dynasty Wide Receiver Tiers 8/11

Dynasty Tight End Tiers 8/22

Mock Drafts

Superflex start-up mock 7/13

One-QB Start-up mock 7/1

One-QB start-up mock 5/19

Superflex start-up mock 5/12 

One-QB rookie-only mock 5/3

Superflex rookie-only mock 4/19

Rookie-only mock 4/12

Superflex start-up mock 4/1

One-QB start-up mock 3/30

Superflex start-up mock 2/17

One-QB start-up mock 2/10

Updated top-200 rankings

No kickers and defenses. Sorry. I go on a week-by-week basis with those positions 99% of the time. 

  1. Christian McCaffrey
  2. Cooper Kupp
  3. Jonathan Taylor
  4. Austin Ekeler
  5. Justin Jefferson
  6. Dalvin Cook
  7. Najee Harris
  8. Travis Kelce
  9. Alvin Kamara
  10. Davante Adams
  11. Ja’Marr Chase
  12. Stefon Diggs
  13. D’Andre Swift
  14. Derrick Henry
  15. Saquon Barkley
  16. Joe Mixon
  17. Mike Evans
  18. Leonard Fournette
  19. Mark Andrews
  20. Aaron Jones
  21. CeeDee Lamb
  22. Tyreek Hill
  23. A.J. Brown
  24. Josh Allen
  25. James Conner
  26. Javonte Williams
  27. Deebo Samuel
  28. D.J. Moore
  29. Tee Higgins
  30. Diontae Johnson
  31. Nick Chubb
  32. Keenan Allen
  33. Brandin Cooks
  34. Kyle Pitts
  35. Ezekiel Elliott
  36. David Montgomery
  37. Patrick Mahomes
  38. Lamar Jackson
  39. Michael Pittman Jr.
  40. Travis Etienne
  41. Justin Herbert
  42. Mike Williams
  43. Jaylen Waddle
  44. Marquise Brown
  45. J.K. Dobbins
  46. Breece Hall
  47. Chris Godwin
  48. Terry McLaurin
  49. Allen Robinson
  50. DK Metcalf
  51. Cam Akers
  52. Josh Jacobs
  53. AJ Dillon
  54. Michael Thomas
  55. JuJu Smith-Schuster
  56. Robert Woods
  57. Darnell Mooney
  58. Devin Singletary
  59. Gabriel Davis
  60. Jerry Jeudy
  61. Elijah Mitchell
  62. Miles Sanders
  63. Kyler Murray
  64. George Kittle
  65. Rashod Bateman
  66. Darren Waller
  67. Adam Thielen
  68. Amon-Ra St. Brown
  69. DeAndre Hopkins
  70. Jalen Hurts
  71. Kareem Hunt
  72. Courtland Sutton
  73. Elijah Moore
  74. Kadarius Toney
  75. Amari Cooper
  76. Chase Edmonds
  77. Dak Prescott
  78. Drake London
  79. T.J. Hockenson
  80. Tyler Lockett
  81. DeVonta Smith
  82. Russell Wilson
  83. Brandon Aiyuk
  84. Dalton Schultz
  85. Joe Burrow
  86. Tom Brady
  87. Tony Pollard
  88. Hunter Renfrow
  89. Rashaad Penny
  90. Damien Harris
  91. Russell Gage
  92. Chris Olave
  93. Matthew Stafford
  94. Garrett Wilson
  95. Trey Lance
  96. Aaron Rodgers
  97. Julio Jones
  98. Allen Lazard
  99. Jahan Dotson
  100. George Pickens
  101. Clyde Edwards-Helaire
  102. Rhamondre Stevenson
  103. Dameon Pierce
  104. Kirk Cousins
  105. Antonio Gibson
  106. Chase Claypool
  107. DeVante Parker
  108. Dallas Goedert
  109. James Robinson
  110. Nico Collins
  111. Jarvis Landry
  112. Tyler Boyd
  113. Skyy Moore
  114. Corey Davis
  115. Christian Kirk
  116. Rondale Moore
  117. Derek Carr
  118. Mike Gesicki
  119. Kenneth Gainwell
  120. Treylon Burks
  121. Cordarrelle Patterson
  122. Zach Ertz
  123. Romeo Doubs
  124. Alexander Mattison
  125. Isaiah McKenzie
  126. Melvin Gordon
  127. K.J. Osborn
  128. Pat Freiermuth
  129. Michael Carter
  130. Justin Fields
  131. Brian Robinson
  132. Albert Okwuegbunam
  133. Nyheim Hines
  134. J.D. McKissic
  135. James Cook
  136. Jameis Winston
  137. Jamaal Williams
  138. Noah Fant
  139. Irv Smith
  140. DJ Chark
  141. David Njoku
  142. Donovan Peoples-Jones
  143. Trey Sermon
  144. Sammy Watkins
  145. Cole Kmet
  146. Jakobi Meyers
  147. Bryan Edwards
  148. Jameson Williams
  149. Sterling Shepard
  150. Michael Gallup
  151. Gerald Everett
  152. Kenneth Walker III
  153. Tua Tagovailoa
  154. Christian Watson
  155. Marquez Valdes-Scantling
  156. Van Jefferson
  157. Braxton Berrios
  158. Daniel Jones
  159. Alec Pierce
  160. Kenny Golladay
  161. Darrell Henderson
  162. Olamide Zaccheaus
  163. Marcus Mariota
  164. Josh Palmer
  165. Tyler Higbee
  166. Raheem Mostert
  167. Trevor Lawrence
  168. Zamir White
  169. Kendrick Bourne
  170. Eno Benjamin
  171. Terrace Marshall Jr.
  172. Velus Jones Jr.
  173. Mitch Trubisky
  174. James Proche
  175. Austin Hooper
  176. Dawson Knox
  177. Joshua Kelley
  178. Ryan Tannehill
  179. Hunter Henry
  180. Matt Ryan
  181. Isiah Pacheco
  182. Carson Wentz
  183. Quez Watkins
  184. Mac Jones
  185. Evan Engram
  186. Darius Slayton
  187. Ameer Abdullah
  188. D’Onta Foreman
  189. Devin Duvernay
  190. Baker Mayfield
  191. Cedrick Wilson Jr.
  192. Nelson Agholor
  193. Logan Thomas
  194. Parris Campbell
  195. Jared Goff
  196. Hayden Hurst
  197. James Washington
  198. Robert Tonyan
  199. Byron Pringle
  200. Isaiah Spiller

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