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Generic Rookie Rankings 2017


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Here are generic rookie rankings for this year's draft class (previously: 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and VBD by draft pick spreadsheet which shows where these numbers come from).

Generic rookie rankings are based only on a player's position and draft pick. For example, this year Dalvin Cook is treated simply as "RB drafted with pick 41", and we can estimate his prospects by looking at the total career VBD of previous RBs who were taken around that point in the draft.

In more detail: I took every RB drafted from 1993-2006, made a plot of career VBD vs. draft pick, and fit a curve to it. Then I adjusted that curve to account for the change in draft value over time (RBs are being drafted later than they used to be, but they aren't scoring any less VBD, so we'd expect a RB drafted at pick 41 in 2017 to have more fantasy value than a RB drafted at pick 41 in 1997). I did something similar for other positions (more details here on how I started this project and here on how I did the adjustments for changing draft value).

Here are the rankings with tier breaks for PPR (though the dropoff in value from Howard onwards is pretty gradual so don't read too much into the tiering); you can see the exact projected VBD for PPR and non-PPR in the spreadsheet.

pk   Pos   Player            Team
4    RB    Leonard Fournette    JAX
8    RB    Christian McCaffrey    CAR
5    WR    Corey Davis    TEN
7    WR    Mike Williams    LAC
9    WR    John Ross    CIN
19    TE    O.J. Howard    TB
41    RB    Dalvin Cook    MIN
23    TE    Evan Engram    NYG
2    QB    Mitchell Trubisky    CHI
48    RB    Joe Mixon    CIN
29    TE    David Njoku    CLE
37    WR    Zay Jones    BUF
40    WR    Curtis Samuel    CAR
67    RB    Alvin Kamara    NO
10    QB    Patrick Mahomes    KC
86    RB    Kareem Hunt    KC
12    QB    Deshaun Watson    HOU
89    RB    D'Onta Foreman    HOU
62    WR    JuJu Smith-Schuster    PIT
105    RB    James Conner    PIT
69    WR    Cooper Kupp    RAM
72    WR    Taywan Taylor    TEN
114    RB    Samaje Perine    WAS
79    WR    ArDarius Stewart    NYJ
82    WR    Carlos Henderson    DEN
84    WR    Chris Godwin    TB
119    RB    Tarik Cohen    CHI
121    RB    Joe Williams    SF
44    TE    Gerald Everett    RAM
45    TE    Adam Shaheen    CHI
96    WR    Kenny Golladay    DET
132    RB    Donnel Pumphrey    PHI
98    WR    Chad Williams    ARI
134    RB    Jamaal Williams    GB
140    RB    Wayne Gallman    NYG
106    WR    Amara Darboh    SEA
143    RB    Marlon Mack    IND
110    WR    Dede Westbrook    JAX

100    TE    Jonnu Smith    TEN
117    WR    Josh Reynolds    RAM
118    WR    Mack Hollins    PHI
156    RB    Brian Hill    ATL
162    RB    Jeremy McNichols    TB
128    WR    Josh Malone    CIN
52    QB    DeShone Kizer    CLE
133    WR    Ryan Switzer    DAL
179    RB    T.J. Logan    ARI
182    RB    Aaron Jones    GB
127    TE    Michael Roberts    DET
139    WR    Jehu Chesson    KC
188    RB    Elijah McGuire    NYJ
141    WR    Chad Hansen    NYJ
87    QB    Davis Webb    NYG

I have written up some of my analysis & opinions on this year's draft class in another thread, but generic rankings don't require any analysis or opinions of the players so I won't put any here.

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