The Fantasy Footballers Live Mock Draft Recap (June 2022)
On Tuesday’s Live Mock Draft episode, hosts Andy, Mike, and Jason work together to draft a roster in a 12-team half-PPR league. In addition, they also dive into some of the recent news, including Cooper Kupp‘s newly signed 3-year extension and its impact on the Rams’ cap situation. The guys also discuss the recent reports that the Lions would bring Jameson Williams back slowly, and how that could affect his fantasy value in both redraft and best-ball formats. And to close out the news and notes segment, they highlight Tom Brady‘s recent comments about Russell Gage and his potential impact for the Buccaneers this season!
And with that, let’s dive into their mock draft!
- 1 QB / 2 RB / 2 WR / 1 TE / 1 Flex / 4 Bench Spots
- o.5 PPR
- 5th Draft Slot
- 12 teams
- 11 Rounds
Round 1: Cooper Kupp
To no surprise, the draft started very running back heavy with four of them coming off the board immediately. At 1.05, Andy, Mike, and Jason debated about continuing the RB run by taking Austin Ekeler. However, with the concern that Ekeler’s touchdown efficiency could regress to the mean, the guys opted to go with the consensus WR1 in Cooper Kupp. After leading the league in metrics such as target share, YAC share, and PPR points over expected, Kupp is unlikely to repeat his historic year. But even if his overall efficiency declines, he should still receive plenty of volume in a high-powered offense, making it very likely that he finishes as a top-3 fantasy WR once again this year.
Other Players Considered: Austin Ekeler
Round 2: CeeDee Lamb
Jason was hoping that either Nick Chubb, Alvin Kamara, or Joe Mixon would drop to the 2.08, potentially solidifying their RB1 position. However, they all went off the board rather early, leaving them with options such as James Conner, Aaron Jones, or Javonte Williams. They also discussed the possibility of taking last season’s TE1 in Mark Andrews. However, with the hope that one of the aforementioned running backs would fall to them in the next round, the Ballers instead selected CeeDee Lamb. With Amari Cooper no longer on the roster, Lamb should have every opportunity to lead the league in receiving yards and take the next step into elite-tier production.
Other Players Considered: James Conner, Aaron Jones, Javonte Williams, Mark Andrews
Round 3: James Conner
Just as the guys predicted, one of the running backs they debated in the second round fell to them at 3.05. As a result, it was an easy choice to take James Conner. And while his touchdown efficiency will likely regress this year (18 total touchdowns on only 241 opportunities), we did see him rank as the RB5 in expected PPR value while Chase Edmonds was injured in 2021. With Edmonds no longer on the team, Conner could be of tremendous value in the 3rd round as he projects to lead the Cardinals’ backfield this year.
Other Players Considered: None
Round 4: J.K. Dobbins
The highlight of this pick was by far the discovery that Kenneth Walker III is now informally known as Ken Walker on the Sleeper platform. But aside from that, both Mike and Jason were heavily intrigued by the potential of pairing Kupp with Michael Pittman Jr, who is currently projected as the WR12 in the UDK. But considering the plethora of receiving options that could still fall to them in the 5th round, they ultimately decided to take J.K. Dobbins. Despite the injury recovery concerns, Dobbins has the upside to lead an efficient Ravens’ rushing offense and finish within the top-16 at the running back position this season.
Other Players Considered: Michael Pittman Jr, Jaylen Waddle, Courtland Sutton, Breece Hall
Round 5: Mike Williams
The Ballers just narrowly missed on Pittman Jr, as he went one pick before the 5.05. Regardless, Mike Williams is an outstanding fallback option as he finished last year as the WR14 in PPR points per game. And despite his tendency to be more of a “boom or bust” option in your lineups, that should not be a problem when your top-2 WR options are Cooper Kupp and CeeDee Lamb. As Jason mentioned on the show, Williams is the perfect WR3 based on their roster construction.
Other Players Considered: None
Round 6: Brandin Cooks
As Mike mentioned in this episode, you can never have too many starting running backs, making Kareem Hunt and Miles Sanders two very tantalizing options at the 6.08. In addition, there are still question marks regarding Dobbins’ health entering the season. Our injury expert Matthew Betz (via our UDK) even cautioned that running backs coming back from an ACL injury tend to perform better in their second season after surgery. However, it was too hard to pass up on the reliability of Brandin Cooks, who continues to produce 1000-yard seasons regardless of the quarterback play. The Ballers lock in another solid WR option and hope that either Sanders or Hunt falls to them in the 7th round.
Other Players Considered: Kareem Hunt, Marquise Brown, Miles Sanders
Round 7: Kareem Hunt
This was another quick and easy pick as Kareem Hunt provides them with a safe RB3 option in case Dobbins starts the year off slowly. Along with an already high fantasy baseline, the Browns may also experience an upgrade at quarterback, which could further improve Hunt’s ceiling. However, if you listened in on the show, Jason and Kyle discuss the possibility of Hunt being cut (or traded) from the roster due to his $0 dead cap, which is certainly within the realm of possibilities. But assuming he does start the season with the Browns, he should be a reliable flex option for fantasy managers this year.
Other Players Considered: None
Round 8: Rashaad Penny
As Andy highlighted on the show, drafting a potential RB1 in the 8th round could be a league-winning pick. Once again, it would give them an option to start over Dobbins in case he is not 100% healthy to start the year. In addition, there is no guarantee that Ken (not Kenneth) Walker is the RB1 for this team going forward. And based on Penny’s elite performance in the final 5 weeks last season – ranking as the RB2 with 22.04 PPR points per game – he could very well be a top-12 running back in 2022 if he receives the opportunity to lead this backfield.
Other Players Considered: Chase Edmonds
Round 9: Rob Gronkowski
Up until this point, the guys have mainly prioritized building up their WR and RB depth. With their 9th pick, they heavily debated taking a quarterback with several high-upside options in Aaron Rodgers, Kirk Cousins, and Trey Lance still available. But with multiple, serviceable options still left on the board, they pivoted away from the quarterback position and instead selected Rob Gronkowski. While there is a possibility that Gronk retires, the upside is tremendous as he finished as the TE3 in PPR points per game last season, behind only Mark Andrews and Travis Kelce. The connection with Brady remains strong, and Gronkowski could be a weekly difference-maker if he returns for another season.
Other Players Considered: Aaron Rodgers, Kirk Cousins, Trey Lance, Melvin Gordon
Round 10: Kirk Cousins
With Trey Lance and Aaron Rodgers off the board, Andy, Mike, and Jason settled for Kirk Cousins as their QB1. While he does not necessarily present the highest upside, Cousins has been one of the most efficient and accurate quarterbacks over the last several seasons. And with former Rams’ OC Kevin O’Connell set to take over as the head coach for the Vikings, we could see a more pass-friendly offense implemented in Minnesota. And with a plethora of weapons at his disposal, Cousins should at the very least perform as a low-end QB1 most weeks this season.
Other Players Considered:
Round 11: Russell Gage
As the guys discussed at the start of the episode, Russell Gage could have a significant role for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. With Chris Godwin likely to miss multiple games recovering from his injury, Gage could slot in as the WR2 in a Tom Brady-led offense that passes the ball at an extremely high rate. Even when Godwin returns, Gage could still be a high-upside bye-week replacement for fantasy managers.
Other Players Considered: Christian Kirk, Marquez Valdes-Scantling