Fantasy Football Picks 2019: 2-Round Mock Draft and Strategy Breakdown

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistAugust 24, 2019

Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams reacts after catching the game-winning touchdown during overtime of an NFL football game against the New York Jets, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Packers won 44-38 in overtime. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Seth Wenig/Associated Press

Millions of people are eagerly awaiting the start of another NFL season, but fantasy football teams are still waiting to be drafted.

Though time is running somewhat thin before the beginning of the campaign, many fake-football players are fine-tuning their strategy for the early portion of the draft.

Which wide receivers are better than pass-catching backs? At what point is Ezekiel Elliott or Melvin Gordon, despite their holdouts, more valuable than the next best option on the board? Should I avoid players dealing with preseason injuries, whether personally or to their teams' quarterbacks?

All of those questions are reasonable, and you might have a different struggle. That's why research and practice are so critical. While no draft strategy is perfect, this is a recap of our thought process during a two-round, 12-team points-per-reception mock.


Two-Round Mock Draft

Round 1

Team 1: Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

Team 2: Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints

Team 3: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers

Team 4: Le'Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Team 5: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans

Team 6: Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers

Team 7: Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Team 8: David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals

Team 9: Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Team 10: Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints

Team 11: Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

Team 12: Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams


Round 2

Team 12: James Conner, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Team 11: Melvin Gordon, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

Team 10: JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Team 9: Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Team 8: Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns

Team 7: Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Team 6: Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Cleveland Browns

Team 5: Antonio Brown, WR, Oakland Raiders

Team 4: Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Team 3: Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Team 2: Adam Thielen, WR, Minnesota Vikings

Team 1: Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers


Strategy Breakdown

Holding the No. 6 overall pick is a tricky spot, but that's exactly the reason we chose the position. The no-brainer playersSaquon Barkley, Christian McCaffrey and Alvin Kamarawere long gone, and Elliott remained on the board.

DeAndre Hopkins was our ideal target, but the No. 5 team swooped up the Houston Texans superstar. At this point, we considered Elliott, David Johnson, Davante Adams and Julio Jones.

When to select Ezekiel Elliott is one of the biggest fantasy football dilemmas in 2019.
When to select Ezekiel Elliott is one of the biggest fantasy football dilemmas in 2019.Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

Uncertainty surrounds both of the backs. Elliott's holdout means he might not play a full season, and Johnson is adjusting to a new offense. Elliott at least has a sturdy blocking unit if he returns, but Johnson does not. His upside is dependent on usage as a receiver, yet Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury seldom leaned on the backs for pass-catching production at Texas Tech.

So, what level of risk are you willing to absorb?

If the answer is not muchlike us, in this mockAdams and Jones are the safest picks. They're the undisputed No. 1 options on offenses with All-Pro quarterbacks and will demand a hefty target share. Adams earned the nod because of his touchdown edge (35 since 2016 compared to 17 for Jones), but either player is a sensible choice at sixth overall.

For the second-round pick, we hoped to select a true featured back or another No. 1 receiver. The truth is we got lucky.

Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr.
Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr.David Richard/Associated Press

Somehow, Odell Beckham Jr. slipped to 19th and made this a painless choice. Mike Evans, Antonio Brown and Adam Thielen otherwise would've been the preferred alternatives, in that order.

Beckham's injury history is notablehe's missed 16 games over the last two seasonsbut he's an elite producer when healthy. For his career, Beckham is averaging 6.6 receptions, 92.8 yards and 0.75 touchdowns, which is basically 20 points per game in a league with PPR scoring.

If OBJ manages to slide this far in your league, don't let the injuries scare you off. His value only rises the further he falls.

Adams and Beckham would be an excellent foundation for a fake football team in 2019.


Follow Bleacher Report writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.