Some people may tell you to stay away from rookies in your fantasy football draft. If you didn't listen to them and took Matthew Stafford as your quarterback in 2009, you were disappointed. If you tried again with Sam Bradford in 2010, you were again disappointed.
So then in 2011, when you looked at your draft board and had to decide whether to take Cam Newton or a defense in the 12th round, you went for the defense. Newton then went on to have one of the greatest rookie seasons of all time. The point is, rookies are unpredictable. But that doesn't mean they're bad fantasy investments.
It's not that you should stay away from rookies entirely, but you do have to exercise caution when taking one, especially in the first half of the draft. In this intriguing article, Fake Teams gives a fact-based argument against selecting rookies, and it's worth the read.
But I think that times are changing in the NFL, and some rookies are worth a shot this season. Here's a look at where I would draft this year's top rookies versus their current ADP. For both the ADP and my own round rankings, I use a 10-team scale.
All Average Draft Position (ADP) stats are for standard scoring leagues, taken from Fantasy Football Calculator. ADP is updated as of Tuesday, August 14th.