Fantasy Football Mock Draft: Overall Drafting Strategy and Cheat Sheet

Jake RillAugust 28, 2022

Fantasy Football Mock Draft: Overall Drafting Strategy and Cheat Sheet

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    AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn

    What better way to spend a Sunday than watching NFL football all day and rooting for the players on your fantasy football team? It's been quite a while since people have been able to do that, as most fantasy seasons ended last December.

    But it's almost that time of year again. On Sept. 8, the 2022 NFL campaign will begin with a matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and Buffalo Bills. Then, the first Sunday of the season will come three days later on Sept. 11.

    However, before you can know which fantasy players to cheer for this year, you'll need to join a league (if you're not in one already) and draft a team. Maybe you've already done so. If not, there's still time, with a little more than a week left before the season.

    As you get ready for your fantasy football draft, here are some tools and strategies that could be helpful for your research and preparations.

Top-40 PPR Cheat Sheet

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    AP Photo/Michael Conroy

    1. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Indianapolis Colts

    2. Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers

    3. Cooper Kupp, WR, Los Angeles Rams

    4. Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings

    5. Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

    6. Ja'Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

    7. Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans

    8. Stefon Diggs, WR, Buffalo Bills

    9. Davante Adams, WR, Las Vegas Raiders

    10. Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

    11. Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings

    12. D'Andre Swift, RB, Detroit Lions

    13. Najee Harris, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

    14. Leonard Fournette, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    15. CeeDee Lamb, WR, Dallas Cowboys

    16. Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints

    17. Deebo Samuel, WR, San Francisco 49ers

    18. Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers

    19. Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    20. Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

    21. Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys

    22. Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns

    23. James Conner, RB, Arizona Cardinals

    24. Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens

    25. Tyreek Hill, WR, Miami Dolphins

    26. Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

    27. Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

    28. DJ Moore, WR, Carolina Panthers

    29. Courtland Sutton, WR, Denver Broncos

    30. Tee Higgins, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

    31. A.J. Brown, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

    32. Michael Pittman Jr., WR, Indianapolis Colts

    33. Javonte Williams, RB, Denver Broncos

    34. Brandin Cooks, WR, Houston Texans

    35. Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

    36. Marquise Brown, WR, Arizona Cardinals

    37. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Miami Dolphins

    38. Diontae Johnson, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

    39. Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders

    40. Allen Robinson II, WR, Los Angeles Rams

2-round Mock Draft

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    AP Photo/Jeff Dean

    First Round

    1. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Indianapolis Colts

    2. Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers

    3. Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

    4. Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings

    5. Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans

    6. Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings

    7. Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

    8. Cooper Kupp, WR, Los Angeles Rams

    9. Ja'Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

    10. Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints

    11. Najee Harris, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

    12. Stefon Diggs, WR, Buffalo Bills


    Second Round

    13. D'Andre Swift, RB, Detroit Lions

    14. Davante Adams, WR, Las Vegas Raiders

    15. Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

    16. Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers

    17. Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns

    18. Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

    19. CeeDee Lamb, WR, Dallas Cowboys

    20. Leonard Fournette, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    21. Deebo Samuel, WR, San Francisco 49ers

    22. Javonte Williams, RB, Denver Broncos

    23. Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    24. Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens

    Conducted using the FantasyPros Mock Draft Simulator

Drafting Strategy

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    Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    When drafting a fantasy football team, it's always important to consider value. Never take a player too early. Try to find players who fall through the cracks and are still on the board later than they should be.

    If you keep that in mind, you should be set up for a successful fantasy draft. And it's easiest to follow that strategy if you have constructed your own personal tier lists.

    Fantasy managers should go into a draft with tiers for the four key positions (quarterback, running back, wide receiver and tight end). By doing this, it will be easier to track the players who are still available in terms of how highly you value them.

    Running out of Tier 3 wide receivers but there is still plenty of Tier 4 running backs on the board? Maybe you should take a WR at that point, then wait for your pick to come around to get one of those RBs, assuming you think one of them can make it back to you.

    Everybody values players differently. So do tons of research, perhaps find some tiers to use as guidelines and then make modifications based on your own preferences. If you have a gut feeling that somebody is going to underperform, don't just draft them because analysts are telling you to. Find somebody else in the same range who you feel better about.

    In terms of which positions to target first, it's always best to stack up on running backs and wide receivers over the first few rounds. You can find start-worthy quarterbacks and tight ends deep into the draft this year, so if managers are reaching for the top few tiers at those positions, don't feel pressured into taking players at those spots, too.

    If that happens, keep building a strong core with strong RBs and WRs. That will set you up for success, especially if you don't feel you're reaching for any player at any point.

    In the late rounds, make sure to stay invested in the draft and target sleepers who you could see actually filling a role later in the season. Maybe it's a rookie who won't get immediate playing time or a breakout candidate who you feel is getting undervalued.

    By drafting those types of players late, you'll be building depth that will be hugely important in the weeks and months to come. Don't be the manager whose interest wanes as the draft goes on. That will pay dividends when your roster suffers a major setback such as an injury, which is highly likely to happen at some point.

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