Hey, great work on these fantasy football drafts, everyone. Your teams look strong, balanced, and have a lot of positives. great work. Triumph of modern drafting principles. Really impressive stuff.
But come on, you’ve been staring at the same menus for days. Let’s blow them up!
At the very least, let’s make some targeted improvements. It’s never too early in the season to improve your team. Here are eight widely available players (plus a useful Week 1 defense) that deserve your attention…
Marvin Mims Jr., WR, Denver Broncos (37% listed)
The Denver wide receiver has been hit hard by injuries this summer, leaving Mims with an unhindered path to picking up important shots and an early season starting role. The junior was a big playing machine at the collegiate level, averaging 19.5 yards per reception over three seasons at Oklahoma. He became the first pick in the Sean Payton era when the Broncos traded to get the final second-round pick. After cheerleading camp and pre-season, Mims looks like a serious contender to be the season’s highest-scoring rookie wide receiver.
Mims has rare athletic attributes that separate him from any other member of Denver’s receiving team, including a speed of 4.38 and an average of 39.5. He deserves a spot on anyone’s roster in any 12-team league.
Recommended bid, assuming a $100 budget: $9
Bigsby was a yard-post-contact terror in the preseason, averaging 5.7 YPC, breaking several big wins and passing the eye test overall.
He’s not an immediate threat to Travis Etienne, but the bruised rookie is an ideal full-back. It shouldn’t surprise anyone if he has a rotational backfield role for Jacksonville in the opening game. Bigsby had 30 catches at Auburn last season, so he’s approved for use as a receiving weapon as well. Consider it a premium alternative with the ability to engage in fluid conversation.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $8
Just so we’re clear: if you’re looking for a perfect replacement for the recently battered Travis Kelsey, this won’t happen. Such a player does not exist. Kelce is a tight end in his own class. We certainly can’t expect Noah Gray or any of the other heads to do as well as Kelsey would have.
Which brings us to Johnson, a veteran coming off a season of 508 yards and 7 TD’s for the Saints. He finished last season with the TE8 title (miles behind Kelce), putting in a particularly strong second-half performance. The team made a modest upgrade in the middle, which should benefit the entire offense. Johnson opens his season against a Tennessee defense that ranked last in pass-facing last year, allowing the second-most receptions (100) and receiving yards (1,144) for opposing tight ends.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $4
Ferguson is a sophomore from Wisconsin who scored 19 of his 22 goals last season and now finds himself a starting player in Dallas. Last year, the Cowboys wore Dalton Schultz in the red. He saw the second most RZ goals among all tight ends (20) and the second most chances inside the 10-yard line (10). If Ferguson finds himself making the same use, he will easily finish in the top 10.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $4
We certainly wouldn’t say Jefferson is the perfect replacement for the injured Cooper Cobb character, because… well, because no one fits that description. But Jefferson is a quality receiving option with the ability to play big, after just one season of 802 yards and six touchdowns. He and Tyler Higbee should see all the goals they can handle in the opener (and possibly beyond), with Kop potentially sidelined. Jefferson in full Supported visualization reception, also. He’s a deep league starter against Seattle in Week 1.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $6
If Howell stays healthy in 2023 and gives us a full season, he can certainly finish in the top 10 in his position. First of all, his two best receivers are emerging stars…
…which definitely helps. Jahan Dotson was a rookie find and was one of the league’s hottest players all summer. Terry McLaurin has already produced three consecutive 1,000-yard seasons, despite working with a parade of unimpressive QBs.
Then there is Howell himself. He has plenty of arm talent and improvisational ability, plus he’s a dangerous rushing threat. In his final collegiate season at UNC, he ran for 828 yards and 11 TDs. We’ve promoted and re-promoted Howell here as a bottom-of-the-line option for managers passing quarterbacks in the early round. He’s one of the few players in that spot worth keeping as a what-if option, just in case Washington’s offense continues its preseason momentum through September.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $6
Jackson is clearly not a suitable replacement for Jonathan Taylor, but here we go. Jim Irsay makes everything weirder and more difficult than it needs to be.
The Colts open the season without their most skilled player (due to a major error on their part), leaving Jackson as a potential starting running back. Fifth-round rookie Evan Hull should see action in passing situations; He came off a 55-catch season for a dreadful Northwestern team. Sketchy vet Zac Moss He should be back from injury in a week or two.
This backyard is just… well, it’s kind of disgusting. Hopefully, you haven’t worked your way into a situation where you need to count on any September foals. However, if you made a Zero RB list, this is the life you chose. For you, Jackson is probably a must. As is moose. And Hal is the uncharted sexy guy with receiving power.
All things considered, this depth chart is pretty bad without Taylor. We need him back in the worst way.
FAB: Officially $5, but Zero RB teams may need to get a little more aggressive with the emergence of the Colts.
will tucker Open the year as a direct backup To Rachaad White, a player coming off an ineffective first professional season, highlight the highlights and the breakaway runs. It’s not like White can’t concede the touches to another back. During Tucker’s final two seasons at Syracuse, he gained over 3,000 scrimmage yards, scored 27 touchdowns and caught 56 passes. It’s possible he could have been selected the second day in the draft, however He was diagnosed with a previously unrecognized heart condition while in the NFL. Tucker was removed by doctors over the summer and it is apparent that he made the most of his opportunity. It may not take long for Tucker to emerge as a more 1A than No. 2 in the Tampa backfield. Hide him now, before he becomes the leader in the picks column later in the season.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $5
Seattle is the favorite at home by 5.5 points facing Matthew Stafford and the Rams who don’t look like a cup. Honestly, this pickup shouldn’t require much additional explanation. If we get over 40 running back from Stafford in the opening week, he’ll probably take 3-5 sacks and give up the ball once or twice. You can’t ask for more when broadcasting Ds.
First Abu Dhabi Bank: $2