Fantasy Football: NFC East Winners & Losers from the NFL Draft
A lot has happened recently in the NFC East, a division that knows drama. The Eagles surprisingly stayed hot all season long and won the Super Bowl despite losing their star QB. The Redskins traded for a QB coming off his best season of his career. The Cowboys recently lost two living legends while the Giants drafted one in the making. Through all the bloodshed and hatred surrounding this division, what did last week’s NFL draft mean for rookies and veterans? Who were the winners and losers?
Zeke looks to be a winner solely for the fact that this offense will rely on him even more. With Jason Witten leaving town, look for Zeke to be fed early and often. Gallup joins a suddenly depleted pass-catching core (Allen Hurns: WR1 anybody?) and has the opportunity to step right into some significant targets on the outside. He is raw but his Reception Perception by Matt Harmon noted he is elite in terms of contested catches and body control. In other words, he’s stepping into the former Dez Bryant role. Dak looks to be a loser considering the offensive weapons he’s working with will be subpar at best outside of Zeke. He no longer looks like a reliable QB1 he was in his rookie year.
New York Giants
With this selection at No. 2 overall, Barkley has cemented himself into the conversation of being a top 7 RB and a 1st round selection in upcoming fantasy drafts. This should help Eli Manning survive and continue his career with a plethora of offensive options, especially with Odell Beckham Jr. returning. OG Will Hernandez also was highly touted and should help shore up an offensive line that also added OT Nate Solder in the offseason. Jonathan Stewart is obviously a “giant” loser along with Paul Perkins, Wayne Gallman and any other RBs who planned on calling New York home. JStew could vulture some goal-line looks but nevertheless, his fantasy career is toast.
The Eagles traded Pick 52 and Pick 169 (5th Rd) to move up and take TE Dallas Goedert one spot ahead of Dallas. He will fill the void left with Trey Burton leaving but in terms of fantasy futures, this was a horrible landing spot as Zach Ertz is the TE1. The clear winners were the incumbent RB crew as the Eagles failed to select an RB in the draft. Jay Ajayi looks to be the lead dog with Corey Clement and the ageless Darren Sproles still being effective and fantasy relevant options in the passing game. They did sign UDFA Josh Adams out of Notre Dame who could fight for a roster spot.
As detailed in Cory Evans’ Rookie Profile article, Guice displays elite speed for a back his size. Although he wasn’t involved in the passing game much in college, he is more than capable of being fed the rock and take the reins as the lead back in this offense. Last year’s rookie RB, Samaje Perine, looks like he’s taking a backseat. The Redskins decided not to spend any early draft capital on a WR after signing FA Paul Richardson in the offseason. Although this unit seems unproven with a new QB Alex Smith, all 3 WRs will have fantasy relevance in 2018.