Fantasy Football 2020: Funniest Team Names and Mock Draft Strategy at Key Spots

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxFeatured ColumnistAugust 16, 2020

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) warms up before a game against the San Francisco 49ers at Super Bowl 54 on Feb. 2, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. The Chiefs won the game 31-20. (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)
Gregory Payan/Associated Press

The 2020 NFL regular season is less than a month away, which means that peak fantasy-draft season is upon us. Just as NFL teams have to approach the season with clear and defined plans, it's wise to have a strategy heading into a fantasy draft.

That should be suited to the league's scoring format. Running backs are a top priority in all formats, but receivers can close the value gap a bit in points-per-reception (PPR) leagues. Dual-threat quarterbacks like Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen hold more value in leagues that award points for quarterback rushing.

Draft strategies can then be broken down further into key spots on the roster—specifically, quarterback, running back, wide receiver and tight end.


2020 Fantasy Mock Draft, PPR

1.01: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers

1.02: Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

1.03: Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints

1.04: Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys

1.05: Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings

1.06: Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints

1.07: Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers

1.08: Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans

1.09: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, Kansas City Chiefs

1.10: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Arizona Cardinals

1.11: Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles

1.12: Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

2.01: Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders

2.02: Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

2.03: Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

2.04: Kenyan Drake, RB, Arizona Cardinals 

2.05 Chris Godwin, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

2.06: Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns

2.07: Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

2.08: Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

2.09: Kenny Golladay, WR, Detroit Lions

2.10: George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers

2.11: Le'Veon Bell, RB, New York Jets

2.12: D.J. Moore, WR, Carolina Panthers



Unlike in the real world, quarterbacks are not typically the backbone of championship fantasy rosters. Make no mistake. Having a bad quarterback situation can sink an otherwise strong team, but serviceable starters can be found late in most drafts.

Most high-end starters can be found after Round 5. Matt Ryan, for example, has an average draft position of 75, according to FantasyPros. There are two big exceptions. Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson have ADPs of 20 and 19, respectively.

If you're keen on the idea of landing Mahomes or Jackson, go for it. Just know that the gap between QB1 and QB5 might not be as big as it is at other positions—though a special season like Jackson's 2019 campaign will buck that trend.

Otherwise, it's usually best to fill out the four starting running back and receiver spots—or three of them and a top-tier tight end, which we will cover momentarily—before targeting a signal-caller.


Running Back

Brian Blanco/Associated Press

The most important spot on almost any fantasy roster is at running back. This is a matter of volume more than anything, as a workhorse back is on the field for the majority of offensive plays and is typically going to get 15-20 touches per game at a minimum. An off day for a receiver might yield just a couple of catches.

Julio Jones, for example, is one of the most reliable fantasy receivers year in, year out, but he still had two games with just three receptions in 2019 and two games with fewer than 50 yards.

Dual-threat backs are the best ones to target in any format. Christian McCaffrey, for example, had more than 2,000 combined rushing and receiving yards last season. That type of production is going to pay off even without the added PPR value.

In standard leagues, however, run-oriented backs like Nick Chubb and Derrick Henry narrow the gap slightly. Henry had 1,606 scrimmage yards but just 18 receptions last season. The low number or receptions matters far less than the yardage total.

Regardless of format, managers should target starting backs who are projected to have heavy workloads early.

Kansas City Chiefs rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire, for example, is unproven and a bit of a question mark in fantasy. However, he's likely to get the bulk of the backfield work now that Damien Williams has opted out of the 2020 season.

It's well worth one's time to follow unproven backs like Edwards-Helaire during training camp to gain some assurance about their projected roles.

"Is everything perfect? No, not right now," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said of Edwards-Helaire, per ESPN's Adam Teicher. "But he's working to get there."


Wide Receiver

Wide receiver is the other fantasy money position. High-volume No. 1 targets are the players to pluck early, but there are two routes to take with early-round receivers.

The first path involves targeting receivers in potent offenses and with quality quarterbacks pulling the trigger. Guys like Jones and Michael Thomas are talented pass-catchers, but they also have Ryan and Drew Brees, respectively, throwing them the football.

Poor quarterback play can significantly hurt a receiver's value, as evidenced by JuJu Smith-Schuster's 2019 season. With Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback in 2018, Smith-Schuster racked up more than 1,400 yards. With Devlin Hodges and Mason Rudolph under center last year, he had just 553 yards.

However, true No. 1 targets in otherwise talent-starved offenses can still produce if they are getting moderate quarterback play. Miami Dolphins receiver DeVante Parker had 1,202 yards in an offense that ranked just 25th in scoring.

The value of receivers is obviously increased in PPR formats.


Tight End

There are only a handful of tight ends who should be targeted early. Travis Kelce, George Kittle and Zach Ertz essentially serve as No. 1 receivers on their respective offenses and should be valued as such. Darren Waller—the only tight end to top 1,000 yards in 2019, aside from Kelce and Kittle—and Mark Andrews are also in the top tier, though they aren't as proven as Ertz, Kelce and Kittle.

Managers who don't land one of these top five can wait until the middle rounds to scoop up a starting-caliber tight end.


Funny Fantasy Team Names for 2020

For those looking to spice up their fantasy leagues and perhaps get a few laughs while waiting in the draft lobby, here are a few funny names for the 2020 season:

  • What's Up, Mahomes?
  • You Mad, Burrow?
  • Chubbthumper
  • Baskin Dobbins
  • Barkley Up the Wrong Tree
  • Judge Jeudy
  • Hot Chubb Time Machine
  • Hooked on a Thielen
  • Vaughn With the Wind
  • Dakstreet's Back
  • 3rd Down for Watt
  • Baby Got Dak
  • Roethlisbergers With Cheese
  • Tua Legit to Quit
  • Deshaun of the Dead
  • The Gronkaneers
  • Zeke and Destroy
  • Dalvin and the Chipmunks
  • Country Road, Take Mahomes