B/R Writers' Fantasy Football Mock Draft Analysis from the 7 Spot, Rounds 13-15

Rob Tong@colickyboyContributor IIIJuly 17, 2012

B/R Writers' Fantasy Football Mock Draft Analysis from the 7 Spot, Rounds 13-15

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    The final rounds of a fantasy draft tend to the time that owners' eyes start glazing over and the phrase "Mr. Irrelevant" keeps popping up in their minds.

    Don't be that guy.

    The final rounds should be a time of careful scrutiny as much as the early and mid rounds. Indeed, I've had many readers tell me how one of their late-round picks became a stud.

    What you're looking for in these last rounds is someone with high upside that either has an opportunity or who could shine if an opportunity arises.

    For example, you could target someone like receiver Brandon LaFell. A former third-round pick by Carolina, he's entering that supposedly magical third season when receivers typically "get it", and could be quarterback Cam Newton's new favorite target this season.

    If you swing and miss on such late-round picks, it's not a great loss. But by targeting guys with high potential, you have the chance of hitting a home run. And these final-round picks could be the difference between good fantasy teams and great ones.

    Here are the Bleacher Report Featured Columnists who participated in this mock draft:

    1. Alexander Onushco

    2. Ryan Lester

    3. Tim Keeney

    4. Ralph Longo

    5. Gary Davenport

    6. James Reagan

    7. Rob Tong (that's me)

    8. Daniel Stack

    9. Matt Madsen

    10. Marco Patitucci

    If you missed it, you can catch up on my analysis of Rounds 1-3, Rounds 4-6, Rounds 7-9 and Rounds 10-12.

    Let's see how this mock draft wrapped up.

13th Round

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    1. Alex: K David Akers

    2. Ryan: Baltimore DEF

    3. Tim: Seattle DEF

    4. Ralph: Houston DEF

    5. Gary: TE Jacob Tamme

    6. James: WR Lance Moore

    7. Rob: RB Ryan Williams

    8. Dan: Chicago DEF

    9. Matt: Philadelphia DEF

    10. Marco: NY Giants DEF


    At this point, I only have three RBs on my roster. I'm not desperate for more RBs, though, since RBs are not too difficult to find on the waiver wire. Last year, players like Ben Tate, DeMarco Murray, Michael Bush, C.J. Spiller, Kahlil Bell, Toby Gerhart and Donald Brown could be picked up off the wire and be plugged in for at least a couple weeks.

    That said, it doesn't hurt to try and be proactive.

    When trying to pick a fantasy backup RB, I try to avoid NFL backup RBs because that player's only chance at production is the starter getting hurt—which is a blind gamble. Rather, I prefer to go with an NFL committee RB as my fantasy backup RB, which has a higher probability of getting something rather than nothing.

    Always looking for upside, I go with Ryan Williams, a former first-round pick for the Cardinals. Both Beanie Wells and Williams are recovering from injuries, and if both are healthy, this backfield looks to be a committee. So if I needed Williams on a given week, I could get flex-like production from him.

    And if Beanie Wells—who kept getting banged up throughout the season last year—is out, Williams would take over. And with his skill set, Williams would like perform well in a featured role.

    It's not a pick I love, but I'm comfortable with it. As I said earlier, I may swing-and-miss with this pick, but the flip side is that this could potentially be a home run as well.

    Solid Values


    Questionable Values

    I would never take a kicker until my last pick, regardless of who the kicker is.

14th Round

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    1. Marco: Stephen Gostkowski, K

    2. Matt: RB Ronnie Hillman

    3. Dan: RB LeGarrett Blount

    4. Rob: TE Coby Fleener

    5. James: NY Jets DEF

    6. Gary: Detroit DEF

    7. Ralph: WR Mike Williams (TB)

    8. Tim: RB Chris Polk

    9. Ryan: QB Alex Smith

    10. Alex: WR Brian Quick


    This is my last "free" pick, as my next—and last—pick is going to be a kicker. So I'm just looking for the best value available.

    Arguments could be made for many players, but I like Fleener here.

    Readers who have followed me know that I've previously said rookie tight ends historically never produce like studs.

    But Fleener has something that previous rookie tight ends never had with their quarterback—immediate chemistry.

    As former teammates, Fleener and quarterback Andrew Luck have an instant rapport that could help elevate Fleener above a typical rookie tight end.

    Obviously, there will be some designed plays that will seek to take advantage of that rapport.

    But on top of that, I can also envision Fleener being Luck's outlet option when Luck is under duress, with Fleener having the tools to potentially turn them into big plays.

    With this mock league being a PPR league, I see Fleener being relatively big for PPR, even as a rookie.

    Again, I'm looking for upside. If Fleener blows up, I have a chip to trade or to become my TE1 if Jimmy Graham gets hurt. And as a 14th round pick, it's no big loss if I swing and miss on Fleener.

    Solid Values

    I really like the Ronnie Hillman pick by Matt, considering Willis McGahee will be 31 years old this year and I've cautioned about RBs who hit the age-30 milestone. I expect Hillman to see time on the field this year.

    Ryan got a great value in Alex Smith in the 14th round. He should (finally) have a breakout year with all the new offensive weapons added this offseason to complement the emerging rapport he showed with Vernon Davis in last year's playoffs.

    Questionable Values

    The difference between the No. 1 fantasy kicker and the No. 10 fantasy kicker last year was 2.0 FPPG. In 2010, the difference was 1.6 FPPG. In other words, all kickers are pretty much the same. So taking Gostkowski (or any kicker) before the last round is a questionable pick.

15th Round

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    1. Alex: Green Bay DEF

    2. Ryan: K Mason Crosby

    3. Tim: K Sebastian Janikowski

    4. Ralph: K Jason Hanson

    5. Gary: K Dan Bailey

    6. James: K Matt Prater

    7. Rob: K Robbie Gould

    8. Dan: K Garrett Hartley

    9. Matt: K Matt Bryant

    10. Marco: TE Kyle Rudolph


    As I've said, kickers are a dime a dozen for fantasy purposes.

    Ideally, you'd prefer a kicker on a team that is good enough to get in field goal range often but not good enough to score touchdowns routinely. In other words, you prefer a kicker that kicks lots of field goals, not lots of extra points.

    Still, guys like the Packers' Mason Crosby and the Patriots' Stephen Gostkowski make the top 10 for fantasy kickers anyway, so that brings us back to what I've always said: kickers are a dime a dozen.

    Solid Values


    Questionable Values


Final Teams

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    The draft strategy (i.e., positions taken with first three picks) is in parentheses next to the owner's name, so you can see judge for yourself how the final team fared when using that draft strategy in that draft position.

    1. Alex (RB-RB-WR)
    QB1: Robert Griffin III
    RB1: Arian Foster
    RB2: Trent Richardson
    WR1: A.J. Green
    WR2: Kenny Britt
    WR3: Demaryius Thomas
    TE1: Fred Davis
    K: David Akers
    DEF: Green Bay 

    QB2: Jay Cutler
    RB3: James Starks
    RB4: Bernard Scott
    WR4: Denarius Moore
    WR5: Brian Quick
    TE2: Jared Cook


    2. Ryan (RB-RB-WR)
    QB1: Tony Romo
    RB1: LeSean McCoy
    RB2: Adrian Peterson
    WR1: Wes Welker
    WR2: Mike Wallace
    WR3: Brandon Lloyd
    TE: Brandon Pettigrew
    K: Mason Crosby
    DEF1: Pittsburgh

    QB2: Alex Smith
    RB3: C.J. Spiller
    RB4: Toby Gerhart
    WR4: Reggie Wayne
    WR5: Randy Moss
    DEF2: Baltimore


    3. Tim (RB-QB-RB)
    QB1: Cam Newton
    RB1: Ray Rice
    RB2: DeMarco Murray
    WR1: Dez Bryant
    WR2: Dwayne Bowe
    WR3: Robert Meachem
    TE: Antonio Gates
    K: Sebastian Janikowski
    DEF: Seattle

    QB2: Philip Rivers
    RB3: Jonathan Stewart
    RB4: DeAngelo Williams
    RB5: David Wilson
    RB6: Chris Polk
    WR4: Santonio Holmes


    4. Ralph (RB-WR-RB)
    QB1: Michael Vick
    RB1: Chris Johnson
    RB2: Darren McFadden
    WR1: Greg Jennings
    WR2: Steve Smith
    WR3: DeSean Jackson
    TE: Jermichael Finley
    K: Jason Hanson
    DEF: Houston

    QB2: Peyton Manning
    RB3: Isaac Redman
    RB4: Ben Tate
    WR4: Justin Blackmon
    WR5: Sidney Rice
    WR6: Mike Williams (TB)


    5. Gary (WR-WR-RB)
    QB1: Ben Roethlisberger
    RB1: Jamaal Charles
    RB2: Frank Gore
    WR1: Calvin Johnson
    WR2: Andre Johnson
    WR3: Marques Colston
    TE1: Jason Witten
    K: Dan Bailey
    DEF: Detroit

    QB2: Matt Schaub
    RB3: Shonn Greene
    RB4: Peyton Hillis
    RB5: Pierre Thomas
    WR4: Steve Johnson
    TE2: Jacob Tamme


    6. James (RB-WR-QB)
    QB1: Matthew Stafford
    RB1: Maurice Jones-Drew
    RB2: Steven Jackson
    WR1: Larry Fitzgerald
    WR2: Vincent Brown
    WR3: Anquan Boldin
    TE1: Vernon Davis
    K: Matt Prater
    DEF: NY Jets

    QB2: Eli Manning
    RB3: Michael Turner
    RB4: Reggie Bush
    RB5: Michael Bush
    WR4: Lance Moore
    TE2: Tony Gonzalez


    7. Rob (RB-TE-WR)
    QB: Matt Ryan

    RB1: Ryan Mathews
    RB2: Doug Martin
     WR1: Brandon Marshall
    WR2: Jordy Nelson
    WR3: Vincent Jackson
     TE: Jimmy Graham
    K: Robbie Gould
    DEF: San Francisco

    RB3: Mark Ingram
    RB4: Ryan Williams
    WR4: Torrey Smith
    WR5: Titus Young
    WR6: Laurent Robinson

    TE2: Coby Fleener


    8. Dan (QB-RB-WR)
    QB1: Aaron Rodgers
    RB1: Matt Forte
    RB2: Roy Helu
    WR1: Roddy White
    WR2: Victor Cruz
    WR3: Antonio Brown
    TE: Jermaine Gresham
    K: Garrett Hartley
    DEF: Chicago

    QB2: Andrew Luck
    RB3: Mikel Leshoure
    RB4: BenJarvus Green-Ellis
    RB5: Stevan Ridley
    RB6: LeGarrett Blount
    WR4: Michael Floyd


    9. Matt (TE-QB-RB)
    QB: Drew Brees
    RB1: Darren Sproles
    RB2: Fred Jackson
    WR1: Percy Harvin
    WR2: Miles Austin
    WR3: Eric Decker
    TE: Rob Gronkowski
    K: Matt Bryant
    DEF: Philadelphia

    RB3: Willis McGahee
    RB4: Donald Brown
    RB5: Ronnie Hillman
    WR4: Darrius Heyward-Bey
    WR5: Malcom Floyd
    WR6: Nate Washington


    10. Marco (QB-RB-WR)
    QB1: Tom Brady
    RB1: Marshawn Lynch
    RB2: Ahmad Bradshaw
    WR1: Hakeem Nicks
    WR2: Julio Jones
    WR3: Jeremy Maclin
    TE1: Aaron Hernandez
    K: Stephen Gostkowski
    DEF: NY Giants

    QB2: Josh Freeman
    RB3: Beanie Wells
    RB4: Jahvid Best
    RB5: Felix Jones
    WR4: Pierre Garcon
    TE2: Kyle Rudolph


    Here are the teams I liked most in this mock:

    • Alex's team has a strong startingexcept at TE, and Jay Cutler is a great backup in case RG3 falls short of expectations. This team does lack good depth though.
    • Dan's team looks solid too. His main weakness is RBs outside of Forte, WR depth and gambling on Gresham as the starting TE (Gresham would be much better as a TE2). I also liked Dan's positional draft strategy (QB-RB-WR) with his first three picks from the eight spot.
    • Matt has a solid team also. I'm not sold on Sproles as an RB1 or Harvin as a WR1 but Gronkowski could make up for those. I also liked Matt's positional draft strategy with his first three picks (TE-QB-RB) from the nine spot.
    • I like Marco's team—both the starters and the bench—although I'm not a fan of any of the RBs. I also liked Marco's positional draft strategy with his first three picks (QB-RB-WR) from the ten spot.

    As for my team, here are my thoughts.


    • It's a strong starting unit from top to bottom, with everyone commanding the ball on their respective NFL teams. This should make for a consistent fantasy team, week in and week out.
    • Matt Ryan should finally become of the top fantasy QBs this year with Julio Jones expected to step up in his second year and be a consistent second passing weapon.
    • Ryan Mathews and Doug Martin should both perform like RB1s.
    • My WR group is arguably the strongest in this entire mock draft.
    • While some speculate Jimmy Graham will return to earth this year, there is no objective reason to project a serious decline for a guy who creates mismatches all over the field with an elite QB getting him the ball.
    • San Francisco is not only safe but could also be a downright monster unit if it gets a few more TDs this year.


    • No backup QB. That's a lesson learned from this draft. I should have taken one over one of the backup WRs because while Andy Dalton and Joe Flacco can be picked up as a free agent and be serviceable backups, they don't exactly inspire confidence.
    • Lack of RB depth. I'm putting a lot of faith in Mathews, Martin and Ingram. And while I strongly believe they will come through, I'll be in a bind if they all do not.

    Hopefully, you found this mock draft (and the various analyses) helpful as you flesh out your own draft plan. Look for analysis from a final B/R Writers mock draft in August.

    Follow me on Twitter: @robtong21