Football is back! With the preseason under way fantasy players are doing mock drafts hourly (or maybe it’s just me) to prepare for their fantasy drafts. Each year fantasy owners want to construct their team with a proper mix of good value players and upside sleepers while avoiding players with high bust potential. For my fantasy readers, this is part seven of eight installments where I will go division by division giving you two players with great ADP value, two players with high bust potential and two sleepers that could help put your team over the top. Today is the AFC West. Players ADP and rankings is based off standard scoring according to the fantasy football calculator. So let’s begin and as always, happy hunting fantasy friends!
Travis Kelce TE Chiefs (4.04)- Coming off his career season, the hype train for Kelce is real and I’m on board with it. Kelce was the focal point of the Chiefs passing attack last season and finished the season as the TE1. Now with Maclin playing in Baltimore and question marks at the starting receiver spot opposite of Tyreek Hill, Kelce will have to take on even more of a role in the offense. With no injury history and a high number of targets coming his way, Kelce is a great value at his current draft value of TE2.
Triple coverage? Doesn’t matter for Amari Cooper. 🔥 pic.twitter.com/nAN6Zhrt7z
— LeadingNFL ™ (@LeadingNFL) August 20, 2017
Amari Cooper WR Raiders (2.09)- Entering his third season, Cooper has been a disappointment to fantasy owners over the past two seasons. However, 2017 will be the year Cooper establishes himself as an elite fantasy receiver. Last year Mike Evans, in his third season, finished as the WR1 and in 2015 DeAndre Hopkins, also in his third season, finished the season as WR5. Cooper has a better quarterback and offense than either of those other two receivers. With over 1,000 yards in both seasons, Cooper could easily hit 1,300 yards this season. Currently drafted as the WR9, Cooper is in a perfect spot to be drafted. He is just outside the elite seven fantasy receivers and leads the second tier of receivers who has the upside to finish in the top five. Cooper is a great WR1 to have at the end of round two if you drafted a running back in the first round.
Marshawn Lynch RB Raiders (2.09)- The Raiders have the best offensive line Lynch has ever run behind but the team has stated they want to keep Lynch fresh for a playoff run. A year away from the NFL and at age 31, Lynch may not have much left in the tank. It has been three years since he was “Beast Mode” in 2014, where Lynch had 280 carries for 1,306 yards and 13 touchdowns. Lynch could prove everyone wrong and play great or he can show that he belonged in retirement. Currently drafted as the RB12, he has too much risk to be a low-end RB1. With safer floor players like Isaiah Crowell and higher upside players like Christian McCaffrey being drafted behind him, Lynch is a player you shouldn’t draft unless he slides into the fourth round.
Broncos D/ST (9.07)- Maybe the best defense in football, the Broncos have one of the best if not best secondaries in the league. However, the team ranked 28th in the league against the run last season and then lost DeMarcus Ware to retirement in the offseason. On top of that, Ware’s replacement, Shane Ray will miss the first month of the season with a thumb injury. The Broncos had 42 sacks last season, ranking third but was only 12th in interceptions and tied for ninth in fumble recoveries. With zero special team touchdowns last season, the Broncos lack the upside to be the first defense drafted; especially in the ninth round.
Tyrell Williams is a lot like Rishard Matthews; depth of WR pool puts him at a sweet price point; will have some role, maybe a big one.
— scott pianowski (@scott_pianowski) August 21, 2017
Tyrell Williams WR Chargers (9.03)- Last season Williams finished as the WR13 after a torn ACL forced Kennan Allen to miss 15 games. Many people loved Williams as a buy low player in the offseason till the Chargers spent a first round pick on Mike Williams. Currently it is unclear if Mike Williams will miss his rookie year with a back injury. Even if Mike Williams plays at some point this season, Tyrell Williams has a firm grasp on the starting spot opposite of Allen. If Allen gets hurt again, Williams’ value makes him a high-end WR2. Even if Allen plays all 16 games, Williams should see enough targets to warrant him as a low-end WR2 or high WR3/FLEX. Currently being drafted as the WR41, Williams has a higher floor and more upside than several receivers drafted ahead of him. Currently being drafted as a WR4, Williams could be the steal that allows you to make a trade mid-season for a stud player.
Hunter Henry TE Chargers (9.06)- Usually rookie tight ends don’t have a major fantasy impact; last season Henry proved that trend wrong, finishing as the TE11. Currently Henry is being drafted as the TE10 behind players like Delanie Walker and Martellus Bennett. For me, after the four elite tight ends, Henry has as much upside as any other tight end. Last season, Hunter tied for the league lead with eight touchdowns among tight ends. In year two Henry is expected to have a bigger role in the offense and could be Philip Rivers’ go to guy in the redzone. For me, unless you are really drawn to one of those four elite tight ends, wait till the later rounds and allow your leaguemates to regret drafting Walker and Bennett. Henry has the ability to finish as a top five tight end this season.