McCoy is one of the safest picks in the first round. You would’ve taken Brian Westbrook No. 7 overall during his prime and that’s exactly what McCoy translates to with his skills. McCoy isn’t injury prone, and will always make up for the lack of rushing yards with receiving yards. Don’t fear Ronnie Brown, McCoy will still receive goal line carries too.
Larry Fitzgerald is my No. 2 overall receiver this year. He produced phenomenal numbers with a terrible QB unit last year. Fitz will be Kevin Kolb’s primary red zone, possession and deep threat option. He’ll dominate targets and could finish as the No. 1 overall receiver.
1 (7th Overall): LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia Eagles 2 (18th Overall): Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals 3 (31st Overall): LeGarrette Blount, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4 (42nd Overall): Beanie Wells, RB, Arizona Cardinals
LeGarrette Blount is a great pick in the third-round of non-PPR leagues. He’s guaranteed early down and goal line carries. Even better, he’s improving his receiving skills to stay on the field at all times, which means he could get some yards through the air too.
Ryan Williams’ season-ending injury paves the way for Beanie Wells to explode. Wells will be a second-round pick next year after dominating on all downs this season. A respectable quarterback in Arizona will provide Wells with more goal line opportunities.
5 (55th Overall): Chad Ochocinco, WR, New England Patriots 6 (66th Overall): Vernon Davis, TE, San Francisco 49ers 7 (79th Overall): Santana Moss, WR, Washington Redskins 8 (90th Overall): Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis Rams
Chad Ochocinco will re-emerge as a top fantasy wideout this season. He’ll benefit from having Tom Brady toss him the rock all year. Brady and Bill Belichick generally want to prove the world wrong by having troubled stars come in and thrive. Ochocinco will be another.
Vernon Davis is too good to pass up in the sixth round as the last elite TE on the board. He will benefit from Braylon Edwards stretching the field and Michael Crabtree’s injury concern. Davis should be the primary red zone target for Alex Smith. Yes, above Braylon.
Who else is going to catch the ball in Washington? Santana Moss will be the top Redskins’ receiving threat this season. You want a receiver who will dominate targets in fantasy, and that’s exactly what Moss will do.
9 (103rd Overall): Danny Amendola, WR, St. Louis Rams 10 (114th Overall): Mike Sims-Walker, WR, St. Louis Rams 11 (127th Overall): LaDainian Tomlinson, RB, New York Jets 12 (138th Overall): Tony Gonzalez, TE, Atlanta Falcons
Sam Bradford will emerge as an elite QB with Josh McDaniels calling the offense. McDaniels turned Kyle Orton into an elite fantasy QB, so it’s difficult to imagine how much fun he’ll have with Bradford. Bradford has an improved supporting cast and remarkable accuracy.
I know Steve Smith was still on the board, but Danny Amendola will be the next Wes Welker of the NFL. He’s going to rack up receptions and yards and could receive some touchdowns too. Josh McDaniels is a mastermind and made Brandon Lloyd a top fantasy WR during his time in Denver.
One of the Rams receivers will break the bank, so might as well take both sleepers. Mike Sims-Walker is looking for a contract, so expect his knee to magically get better by game day. He’s scored 14 touchdowns the past two seasons, so double-digits is highly likely.
It remains to be seen if Shonn Greene can carry a full workload, so you might as well take his backup in a run-heavy offense. LaDainian Tomlinson still has great hands and is a red zone threat, so he could do some damage as well.
Tony Gonzalez is too good to pass up. He’d give me trade bait during the season. Gonzalez should bounce back with the Falcons opening up the passing attack for Matt Ryan. Julio Jones and Harry Douglas will spread the field to give Gonzalez more room to work with.
13 (151st Overall): Roy Helu, RB, Washington Redskins 14 (162nd Overall): Greg Little, WR, Cleveland Browns 15 (175th Overall): Cowboys D/ST 16 (186th Overall): Matt Bryant, K, Atlanta Falcons
Mike Shanahan didn’t draft Roy Helu in the fourth round for no reason. He loves to use these shifty type of running backs for his offense, so he’ll be good for a spot start or two during the season.
Greg Little is the real deal in Cleveland. He has Terrell Owens-like physical skills. He is an aggressive receiver who will be Colt McCoy’s primary deep threat and possession receiver. He could be this year’s No. 1 rookie WR.
I believe in Rob Ryan, so expect the Cowboy’s defense to be much improved this season. Reminder: Never draft a defense before the last three rounds. They are impossible to predict.
Matt Bryant plays most of his games in domes, so no need to worry about weather conditions. He’s a reliable and accurate kicker in the prolific Falcons’ offense. Reminder: Never draft a kicker before the last round!
Strategy: In a 12-team non-PPR league, your best bet is to grab running backs that are guaranteed a ton of touches and goal line carries with three of your first five picks. I guaranteed that and moved on, though Marshawn Lynch fell further than I expected.
You need wide receivers that are guaranteed targets, so grab guys who are sure-fire No. 1 options. Larry Fitzgerald was a steal in the middle of the second round. I may have waited too long to grab my No. 2, but I still think Chad Ochocinco returns to glory. In this format, we can start three running backs and two wide receivers, so I’ll take the minimal hit. I was able to make up for it by grabbing another No. 1 option in Santana Moss and two of my top sleepers in the Rams’ starting two WRs.
Sam Bradford will be an elite fantasy QB in his second year. Vernon Davis has better hands than Braylon Edwards and is a safer bet to stay on the field more than Michael Crabtree, so I’ll take him in the sixth to fill out my starting roster.
It’s always nice to have a rookie or two to root for, and I believe Greg Little can be this year’s Mike Williams of Tampa Bay.
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