The RotoUnderworld radio program hosted by The PodFather is the premiere dynasty and hot take fantasy football podcast on the market. As a listener, Patron, and content creator for the show, I will be summing up his hottest takes of the 2020 offseason. To get the full discussion on these topics, check out the podcast. These takes utilizes PlayerProfiler’s advanced stats and metrics to find obvious deficiencies in consensus ADP and popular player valuations.
No. 5) Cam Newton is the Late Round QB to Target Who Can Finish as a QB1
Cam Newton was a blue chip quarterback prospect coming out of college with upper-percentile athleticism and dominant collegiate stats. He was drafted at No. 1 overall and balled out for years in Carolina, adding a Super Bowl appearance despite minimal help from his supporting cast. Newton is a known stud and is motivated to an unprecedented degree after being tossed aside by his own team and the entire league. He has an Aaron Rodgers level of pure talent, and it is now coupled with a Tom Brady-like motivation and work ethic.
Check out Cam Newton’s 2020 Projection on PlayerProfiler’s “World Famous” Draft Kit:
His five career finishes in the top 5 are boosted by a solid rushing floor. Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels, the coach behind peak Tim Tebow, will utilize Newton’s strengths. The current skill position group in New England is arguably better than anything he has ever worked with in Carolina. He will easily smash his FFPC ADP of 126.89 (QB16) and launch teams to fantasy success in 2020.
No. 4) Rob Gronkowski is a Lock-Button TE1 Upside Selection in the Middle Rounds
Rob Gronkowski is the best tight end of the last decade and it’s not close. He returns to the NFL in 2020 and enjoys continuity with the GOAT, Tom Brady.
Fantasy players have selected Gronk in the first two rounds for nearly ten years. Yet, now suddenly he’s an eighth-round pick and selected as the TE10 on average per FFPC ADP. It does not add up. His career stats show nothing but pure dominance when healthy.
Gronk presents double-digit touchdown upside and will return value at his cost. The injury risk is already baked into his ADP. Not to mention he had an entire year away from football to rehabilitate his body and prepare for a return to the NFL. The “crowded” Tampa Bay receiver corps and tight end room is actually a boost for Gronk’s value. It seems counterintuitive, but less time on the field means less wear and tear, and the targets he draws will all be high-quality and high-efficiency opportunities.
No. 3) Calvin Ridley is NOT This Year’s Chris Godwin
The Calvin Ridley hype is out of control. He’s a fourth-round pick with a 45.89 (WR15) ADP. Many tout him as this year’s Chris Godwin, but The Podfather sees through the mirage. Ridley will have a good season in Atlanta as the No. 2 receiver and should put up good fantasy numbers. The issue is his cost in all formats and the false comparison to Godwin.
The first major difference is athleticism. Godwin, unlike Ridley, has upper-percentile metrics in every major category. His measurables are further blemished by his collegiate profile. The only closely comparable metric is his upper-percentile College Target Share. Other red flags are a late Breakout Age and a measly 131 (No. 72) yards after the catch in 2019. Godwin led the league with 574 yards after the catch last season. As the Podfather Puts it, Ridley is a catch-and-fall-down type of guy.
The final major difference is opportunity. Last summer, The Podfather touted Godwin as being more talented than Mike Evans, and he was right. Nobody thinks Ridley is better than Julio Jones. Godwin’s breakout came from nowhere, he was just depth in 2018 with a 67.7-percent (No. 82) Snap Share. He erupted in 2019 with a 95.7-percent (No. 9) Snap Share and a true alpha role. Ridley has already been given his shot and we know what he is. He improved from a 65.0-percent (No. 88) Snap Share in 2018 to an 80.9-percent (No. 44) mark last season. He was No. 18 in Fantasy Points per Game with a full-time role in Atlanta. He’s being drafted at his ceiling. Godwin was drafted at his floor. Ridley is a good player, but overpriced in 2020.
No. 2) D’Andre Swift is the Best Value High-Upside Rookie to Target in Redraft
D’Andre Swift has as much upside as any other rookie in this class but comes at half the price of Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Jonathan Taylor. Swift is a fifth-round pick (RB 26), whose talent profile suggests a high ceiling for a running back stud. He balled out at Georgia after breaking out in his sophomore season, putting up over 2,300 rushing yards, 21 rushing touchdowns, and 56 receptions for 513 yards. His productivity was driven by upper-tier athleticism with a 4.48 (83rd-percentile) 40-Yard Dash and and 87th-percentile BMI. Fantasy players are quick to forget that prior to the selection of Edwards-Helaire in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, the conversation for rookie 1.01 was between Swift and Taylor. He is plenty talented.
Swift faces the same skepticism that Miles Sanders received last offseason. Fantasy players struggle to trust coaches with a history of utilizing a committee backfield. Sanders walked into a timeshare with Jordan Howard last season and barely touched a 50-percent Snap Share for nine weeks. However, once the snaps came, he became a mega-producer. He now sits among the top ten in ADP after being a fifth-round pick in redraft and a value in dynasty startups. Kerryon Johnson has spent two years in the Detroit committee carousel. In reality, the committee approach perished when Swift was made an early-second round NFL Draft selection. Similar to Sanders in Philly, Matt Patricia has never had an all-purpose back with this much talent. The time will come when he is forced to feed Swift, and we’ll once again get a true workhorse at a fifth-round value.
No. 1) Jonathan Taylor is the Rookie 1.01 over Clyde Edwards-Helaire
This take was mild back in March. It then became hot following Day 1 of the NFL Draft. The heat from this take is absolutely scorching following Damien Williams opting out of the 2020 NFL season. Despite many obstacles, The Podfather has remained steadfast in his take and the numbers back it up. This topic has been put through the ringer on the podcast, so this recap will be brief.
Jonathan Taylor is the second-best running back prospect since Saquon Barkley. His athleticism metrics, size, and durability in the face of a monster workload are truly generational. Many cannot appreciate his profile because the odds of having two Barkleys only two years apart are low. He’s a can’t-miss prospect running behind an elite offensive line in a run-first system. Players cannot miss on the 1.01 in rookie drafts and we draft players for life in dynasty. Taylor at 1.01 is the safest bet anyone can make in fantasy football in 2020.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire will dominate as an RB1 in 2020. The loss of Williams strengthens his projected workload. His draft capital coupled with coach praise is all the assurance we need to pound the table in 2020. However, in dynasty, CEH is not a sure bet for his entire career. His prospect profile heavily suggests that he is a system running back. Granted, he plays in the ideal system for his skillset in the NFL. Pursue him in seasonal formats, but for dynasty, you cannot draft him at the 1.01 with the same level of long-term confidence as Taylor.
Listen to the Rotounderworld radio program for the hottest takes The Podfather has to provide. Cam Newton is the best late round QB to target this year. Rob Gronkowski is a force of nature, draft him as such. Calvin Ridley‘s stock will fall in the same manner his body does after he catches the football. A draft pick on D’Andre Swift is a draft pick for fantasy success. Don’t be blinded by landed spot in rookie drafts, focus on the measurables and draft Jonathan Taylor at the 1.01.