I have documented my purchase and management of an FFPC dynasty football orphan in this article series. FFPC cut day came and went, and besides a big move for Joe Burrow, my team outlook, both near and short term, would be dramatically altered by how my rookie draft went.
This team’s sheer number and high-quality rookie picks were the most appealing thing and what drew me to the purchase. There were some quality dynasty assets like Ken Walker, D.K. Metcalf, and Drake London, but the opportunity to shape a roster with three 2023 1st-rounders, four 2023 2nd-rounders, and the 3.02 was what enticed me the most.
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The NFL Draft
The NFL Draft was primarily positive for fantasy. Bijan Robinson and Jahmyr Gibbs were selected in Round 1, ensuring that my 1.02 pick would be an invaluable first-round running back. I also had the 1.04, and I was thrilled by the landing spots of Jordan Addison and Quinten Johnston and knew that there would be a chance that Jaxon Smith-Njigba could fall to me due to his somewhat disappointing landing spot of Seattle. Smith-Njigba at No. 4 overall would be rare but not impossible.
I had moved the 1.11 in a trade for Joe Burrow, which is a deal I am still thrilled about. Leading up to rookie drafts, I decided to trade Jameson Williams. Williams is a talent I believe in and have high hopes for, but with a five-game suspension to start the 2023 season, I looked at options to pivot. I am not entirely out on Williams in Dynasty and still have a few shares. However, in this league, I traded him along with a 2024 3rd round pick for the 1.07 and 2024 2nd-round pick.
The Williams deal gave me three of the first seven selections and an extra 2024 second-round pick in case I needed to trade up or acquire a veteran.
Roster Before the Rookie Draft
Ken Walker, Alexander Mattison, Keaontay Ingram
Greg Dulcich, Chig Okonkwo, Gerald Everett
D.K. Metcalf, Drake London, Terry McLaurin, Josh Palmer, Skyy Moore, John Metchie
With the 1.02, I selected Jahmyr Gibbs This was an easy, no brainer decision. We have moved Gibbs to running back No. 5 overall in our PlayerProfiler Dynasty Rankings. Gibbs has outstanding past catching ability and profiles as a potential Austin Ekeler or Christian McCaffrey-type asset. The Detroit Lions used the No. 12 overall pick in the NFL Draft to select Gibbs, and I firmly believe they will feature him right away in a very successful offense.
My team was light at the running back position and took a hit when Ken Walker was suddenly surrounded by fellow second-round pick Zach Charbonnet after the NFL Draft. Gibbs now becomes my RB1 with Walker as my RB2.
The manager selecting the No. 3 overall pick used the entire clock, and I was hopeful Smith-Njigba would fall to me. I even attempted to trade up but to no avail. Jordan Addison was the pick I made with confidence. I am very excited about Addison, and we already have him inside the top 24 wide receivers in our Dynasty Rankings at PlayerProfiler. I view him as an immediate starter for this team.
I held my breath when the manager with the 1.06 was on the clock. I was hoping for Dalton Kincaid, and although I like Zay Flowers, Kincaid was my preferred pick. When Flowers was selected, I wasted no time and smashed the draft button to add Kincaid. With Greg Dulcich, Chig Okonkwo, and Gerald Everett already on my roster, I could now afford to move a tight end. In the FFPC, young and promising tight ends are always trade targets for opposing managers.
I attempted to trade back into the first round multiple times to select running back Devon Achane, but no one bit on any trades. Kendre Miller went No. 11 overall, and Michael Mayer was selected No. 12. I was shocked when the manager chose Jalin Hyatt as the second round’s first pick. Achane was an easy selection at the 2.02. He is an explosive player in an exciting offense. There are obvious concerns about his size, but he has exceptional speed and burst.
This pick was somewhat tricky for me to make. I liked Roschon Johnson and Marvin Mims. Both made a lot of sense in this range for my build. When push came to shove, I could not pass up the opportunity to draft Sam Laporta despite my earlier selection of Kincaid. This pick came down to trade equity and my belief in Laporta. Laporta was an early second-round pick and is now in an exciting offense. He should be a plug and play option for the Lions given their current tight end room.
Johnson was selected with a 2.05, but I could still draft one of my favorite second-round wide receivers in Mims. Mims is in a potential log jam at wide receiver, and it may take him half the season or perhaps the entire season, before he gets his opportunity to shine. However, I very much believe in the talent. He is an explosive player who was highly successful at Oklahoma. Six picks into the draft, I selected two running backs, two tight ends, and two wide receivers. I had added talent to all three non-QB positions with my draft capital.
After I selected Mims Rashee Rice, Tyjae Spears, and Jonathan Mingo all went off the board. I considered running back Tank Bigsby, but despite my positional need, I went with Jayden Reed, a wide receiver. Reed was selected in the second round by Green Bay, who has both the opportunity and talent ahead of him immediately. The only downside with Reed is that, unlike Mims and Addison, he is a slightly older prospect at 23 years old. Therefore, there is a little less upside to this election.
With seven rookies already selected, I put this pic up for grabs on the league message board. My asking price was a 2024 2nd. Another manager sent me the offer, and I accepted it.
I now had added seven rookies, Joe Burrow, and accumulated two additional 2024 2nd rounders.
The Cooper Kupp and Austin Ekeler manager had expressed on the message board that they were open to moving one of the two. With all the younger players in tow, my roster had the flexibility to take on a veteran. With the FFPC roster constraints, consolidation is always one of my considerations.
I sent an offer of Greg Dulcich and Terry McLaurin for Kupp. That offer was rejected, but I was quickly sent a counter. My 2023 5th rounder, McLaurin and Okonkwo. I hate losing Okonkwo, but with Kincaid and LaPorta rostered, I could afford to move him. Pivoting from the 27-year-old McLaurin to the 29-year-old Kupp was a negligible age change.
Fantasy production-wise, this trade was leaps and bounds in my favor. McLaurin had never finished higher than WR20 overall in four years as a pro with a PPR PPG high of 14.9 in 2020. Kupp should put up high-end WR1 numbers and 20 PPG whenever he is on the field.
All in all, the first two rounds, combined with the Kupp pickup, I have put my team in a position to compete.
Here is my roster after three rounds of the rookie draft and the Cooper Kupp pickup. New additions are in bold.
Current 2024 Draft Picks
2024 1st, 3 – 2024 2nd Rounders, 2024 3rd, 2024 4th, 2024 5th, 2024 6th, 2024 7th
The roster is coming together, although I could use additional RB help.
The next big event will be the summer cut-down day, where my roster will be trimmed to 20 total, including a Defense and Kicker. I am thrilled with how this rookie draft turned out, and I hope you also crushed your rookie drafts!