Our first 2013 fantasy football mock was very interesting, as all first mocks are each season. This year the trend of waiting on a quarterback is being taken to the extreme for the most part, but some of our players got eager for passer and didn’t wait too long. I waited one pick too long and got burned, but was pleased with the rest of my lineup after picking fourth. If you have a similar pick this year, see if my team can help your strategy:
Round 1 (Pick 4): Ray Rice
Naturally, Adrian Peterson and Arian Foster went one and two and Marshawn Lynch followed at three, so Rice was the best running back left on my draft board, so that was a no-brainer.
Round 2 (PIck 17): Brandon Marshall
All of the top running backs were gone as well as Calvin Johnson and AJ Green, so Marshall was by far the best player left on my board. After he caught a million passes in 2012 and showed he still has a heck of a rapport with Jay Cutler, he was an easy pick.
Round 3 (Pick 24): Dez Bryant
If this was a PPR league, I’d have the best team so far. But with over 90 percent of the picks running backs so far and Bryant right below Marshall on my draft board, I would have been foolish to pass on the best player available here.
Round 4 (Pick 37): Reggie Bush
At this point, I really needed a decent RB2 before taking a WR3, so I went with Bush, who could have a ton of all-purpose yards this year now that Jahvid Best is gone. Hopefully he’ll sprinkle in some touchdowns as well to help me out.
Round 5 (Pick44): Chris Ivory
I highly expected Ivory to be gone by the fifth round, but he fell right into my lap as a superb RB3. I can definitely say I’m confident starting him in my flex spot behind my first four picks.
Round 6 (Pick 57): Reggie Wayne
I landed Wayne in the 10th round last year and obviously rode him deep into the playoffs as my default WR1. To grab him this late as my WR3 this year with another full offseason to work with Andrew Luck, I consider this pick a steal.
Round 7 (Pick 64): Hakeem Nicks
Low and behold, Nicks was still on the board in the seventh round. Sure, he has injury history, but Victor Cruz now has big-money syndrome, which means he’s in for a down year and Nicks should pick up the extra targets and make something out of them.
Round 8 (Pick 77): Vernon Davis
Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten, Tony Gonzalez and Rob Gronkowski were all gone by this point, so I felt fortunate to land the only other elite tight end in this year’s draft in the eighth round. With Michael Crabtree out, Davis should see an increase in targets, which means big numbers.
Round 9 (Pick 84): Jonathan Stewart
Obviously all solid running back choices were gone by this point, so I took the best starter left on the board. Stewart won’t ever be anything more than a bye-week fill-in, but he’s one of the best in that department this year.
Round 10 (Pick 97): Joe Flacco
In the round before, I was set on drafting Luck, who I drafted in the 14th round last year and absolutely gloated over for the rest of the season. However, Luck went one pick before me, so Flacco was by far the best choice left, if you can imagine that. Obviously he probably won’t be as good as he was in 2012, but in the 10th round, beggars can’t be choosers.
Round 11 (Pick 104): Denarius Moore
With the same theme from the ninth round, I went with the best starter on the board. I’m not into drafting backups who might make noise; I’d much rather have someone who is guaranteed to get some work. Moore has upside if Matt Flynn pans out under center.
Round 12 (Pick 117): Mark Ingram
Not to contradict myself, but Ingram was the best player available at this point. Word on the street is he’s supposed to get more work this year as his team tries to balance out its offense, so he would be a great sleeper if that happens.
Round 13 (Pick 124): Lance Moore
With the departure of Devery Henderson, Moore is also a huge New Orleans Saints sleeper this season. He had a superb 2012 campaign as a third option in the Big Easy, so he should thrive as a full-time starter this season.
Round 14 (Pick 137): New England Patriots D/ST
Year in and year out, the Patriots’ defense and special teams puts up more than respectable fantasy numbers. I would have love to get a unit like the Denver Broncos‘ here, but when you always wait until the 14th round for a defense, you have to take what’s left. The Patriots were fifth on my draft board, so I definitely didn’t do bad here.
Round 15 (Pick 144): Dan Bailey
Bailey was one of the most accurate and reliable kickers in the NFL during his rookie season and gets tons of opportunities because the Dallas Cowboys fail to score touchdowns so often after crossing midfield. If he repeats his 2012 performance, I’ll be more than happy with him as my kicker.