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[Dynasty] 2021 NFL Draft Class


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2 hours ago, Ilov80s said:

The author had a note at the bottom saying that he expects Harris to announce his withdrawl from the NFL draft in the next week. He said Najee Harris is going to sign with NASA so he can become the first man to score a touchdown in space. 

I've seen a couple mocks where no RB goes in the 1st or if only goes it's Etienne

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This is where I am before we enter the meat of silly season: I think there are 13 great bets to be starters in our game Lawrence, Wilson, Fields Etienne, Harris, Williams Chase, Wa

I get a kick out of amateur sports writers trying to use fancy words. You're looking to use "innate" here, chief.

Strategic bump so that this article is near the top of a fresh page - dominator rating & breakout age are useful variables to consider when you are looking at NFL rookies for fantasy football purp

7 hours ago, Penguin said:

I've seen a couple mocks where no RB goes in the 1st or if only goes it's Etienne

This was a 7 round mock tho

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2 hours ago, Ilov80s said:

This was a 7 round mock tho

Sounds like a mea culpa of a guy who clearly didn't want to redo his draft.  

 

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14 minutes ago, Faust said:

"Ohio State RB Trey Sermon: His relatively modest 48-486-3 receiving line with the Sooners and Buckeyes doesn’t jump off the page, but Sermon does deserve credit for dropping just a single pass over the final three years of his career."

Well that's kind of interesting.

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6 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

"Ohio State RB Trey Sermon: His relatively modest 48-486-3 receiving line with the Sooners and Buckeyes doesn’t jump off the page, but Sermon does deserve credit for dropping just a single pass over the final three years of his career."

Well that's kind of interesting.

It's a good sign though I have to suspect almost all of those catches are simple dump offs. 80% of the RBs in the NFL can catch a flat route. The real difference makers are the guys who can catch a wheel route over the shoulder or an angle route in the middle of the field with contact from a LB. Do you know if that can be part of Sermon's game?

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40 minutes ago, Faust said:

I doubt that many leagues use punters or long-snappers; however, these are interesting articles on two NFL Draft prospects:

Is Camaron Cheeseman, aspiring dentist, the NFL draft's top long-snapper?

2021 NFL Draft's unlikeliest prospect: Zach Von Rosenberg, 30 and already a millionaire, draws buzz as punter

Any long snapper named Cam Cheeseman is clearly gonna be around for like 12 years.  

Edited by massraider
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3 hours ago, massraider said:

Any long snapper named Cam Cheeseman is clearly gonna be around for like 12 years.  

He pretty much has to be Green Bay’s 1st round pick. 

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Is anyone a bit scared off or affected by the players who opted out last year? As a lions fan that sees Chase mocked at 1.07 it brings back visions of Mike Williams 2005. Granted, you can’t judge chase based on that. Williams was still highly regarded, ran 4.57 at the combine (6’5” 220), and had put up solid numbers at USC. He had to sit out a year, and never really panned out, other than a decent stretch with the Seahawks. 
No one seems to mention this much when talking about chase or trey lance. Is it worth considering when spending a top 10 nfl pick or a top 5 dynasty rookie pick?

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1 hour ago, Snorkelson said:

Is anyone a bit scared off or affected by the players who opted out last year? As a lions fan that sees Chase mocked at 1.07 it brings back visions of Mike Williams 2005. Granted, you can’t judge chase based on that. Williams was still highly regarded, ran 4.57 at the combine (6’5” 220), and had put up solid numbers at USC. He had to sit out a year, and never really panned out, other than a decent stretch with the Seahawks. 
No one seems to mention this much when talking about chase or trey lance. Is it worth considering when spending a top 10 nfl pick or a top 5 dynasty rookie pick?

This is an interesting question.
 

Report: NFL Owner “Hesitant” To Draft Player Who Opted Out

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Why opt-outs are this NFL draft’s biggest unknown

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Jaelan Phillips and Gregory Rousseau are both long, explosive and relentless. They can blow past linemen, corral quarterbacks and chase down ball carriers. They had similar production (1.5 tackles for loss per game) playing the same position (defensive lineman) at the same school (Miami) wearing the same jersey number (15).

With one significant difference: Phillips put up his monster numbers last year; Rousseau didn’t. While Phillips was finally living up to his five-star potential as a second-team All-American, Rousseau was watching from afar as one of the sport’s most high-profile opt-outs.

That puts the Hurricanes’ two projected first-round picks at the center of a variable that has even confounded ESPN analyst Mel Kiper.

“How you factor in the opt-outs against the guys that played…” Kiper said, “is going to be the most interesting storyline of this draft.”

It’s not just Rousseau vs. Phillips. At least a half-dozen first-round hopefuls sat out all of 2020, while a handful of other top-40 prospects left their teams during the regular season.

Their decisions give the Bucs and every other team differing, if not incomplete, sets of data. Front offices must evaluate the risks and rewards of a player’s potential based on year-old film and pro day performances.

The result is another layer of uncertainty thrown atop an already uncertain process — an only-in-a-pandemic dynamic with millions of dollars and the future of franchises at stake.

It started (sort of) with Leonard Fournette

When Leonard Fournette and Christian McCaffrey skipped their bowl games in 2016, no one knew how NFL teams would respond. Would front offices view those choices as understandable business decisions or the red flag of a quitter?

The league shrugged. After both running backs were drafted in the top eight, skipping bowl games became commonplace. But sitting out for an entire year didn’t become viable until the pandemic hit.

The reasons differed by player. Opting out allowed Rousseau to help his mother, a nurse, retire early from the COVID-19 frontlines. Others did so because of money (preseason All-American Jaylen Twyman from Pitt), concern over family members’ health (likely first rounder Caleb Farley from Virginia Tech) lingering midseason injuries (Florida State receiver Tamorrion Terry) or simply to get a jumpstart on draft prep (FSU cornerback Asante Samuel).

College football’s collective indecision — like the Big Ten and Pac-12 canceling, then restarting their seasons — played a significant role, too.

“I didn’t feel comfortable going out there to play if they weren’t comfortable with us being out there playing,” said defensive back Ambry Thomas, a Day 3 prospect from Michigan.

By sitting out, Thomas and others no longer had to accept the extra risk of injury or illness, nor did they have to endure the season’s start-and-stop chaos. Instead, without a weekly opponent to prepare for, they could concentrate on themselves.

“Opting out, that gave me time to focus on the things that I needed to improve on my game,” said receiver Nico Collins, an early-round prospect from Michigan.

For Collins, that meant refining his route running. For Rousseau, it was increasing his flexibility.

Northwestern’s Rashawn Slater said the individualized training he received in Texas “definitely works to my advantage” as he vies to be the first offensive tackle off the board.

“Every single day I was learning something new,” Slater said.

Slater believes that knowledge has made him a better player. Maybe it will allow him to contribute more as a rookie or extend his career.

But how much will it help him on draft day?

Less information, more risk

As talented as some of the opt-outs are, their non-existent 2020 film creates an extra risk teams have to assess.

“A lot can change with the player between 2019 and now,” Bucs general manager Jason Licht said, “especially if they haven’t been playing and they’ve just been training.”

Teams don’t know how Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell, LSU receiver Ja’Marr Chase and Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons would have progressed or regressed from All-America 2019 seasons. They’re stuck assessing eight-figure investments based on old information.

“We’re talking about top-10, top-15 players that you haven’t seen in over a year,” ESPN analyst Todd McShay said.

Rousseau is even riskier. Because he only made two appearances during his redshirt 2018 season, his resume consists of 13 games in 2019.

“I don’t have a lot of film, but I feel like I showed a lot in the times that I did play,” Rousseau said.

He did; his 15 ½ sacks trailed only Chase Young (Washington’s No. 2 overall pick last year). But it’s still only one year, making his sample size outdated and small.

That puts a greater emphasis on Rousseau’s pro-day performance, which carries another pandemic-related challenge.

Because the traditional scouting combine was canceled, the apples-to-apples comparison of prospects doing the same drills on the same day at the same location no longer exists. Instead, teams must gauge players’ measurables on pro days that take place in different conditions across the country.

The numbers, McShay said, aren’t comparable. And in at least one notable case, they don’t exist at all.

After leaving Virginia Tech, Farley said he put “a lot of bank in” his pro day. Except he was unable to participate in it after having surgery on a pre-existing back issue.

“Really the only negative about (opting out) is just not being able to go put up numbers that I was supposed to go put up,” Farley said.

We don’t yet know how much, if at all, that negative will hurt his draft stock. Before Farley’s surgery, Kiper said another year of solid production would have solidified him as a top-10 pick. Instead, Kiper sees Farley going later in the first round — a potential multi-million-dollar slide. Then again, if Farley had played and gotten ill or injured, he might have fallen even more.

All the uncertainty leads to an array of yet-to-be-answered questions. Kiper wonders whether the incomplete evaluations will cause some lower-tier opt-outs to drop an entire round. Will the extra risk lead some teams to trade out of this year’s draft and into next year when the process, hopefully, is more normal?

“If you have a similar grade on a guy that didn’t play in 2020 versus a guy that did play in 2020, you’re going to probably go with the guy that played this season,” McShay said, “because you just feel like you have more information on him.”

Which makes Miami’s No. 15 from 2020 seem a lot more appealing than the one from 2019.

 

 

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Which NFL draft prospects were helped, hurt by opting out?

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Although we don’t yet know what will happen to all the opt-outs in this year’s NFL draft, we do know how they’ve risen (or fallen) in the eyes of analysts:

Miami defensive end Gregory Rousseau

Rousseau totaled 15 ½ sacks in 2019, then opted out of the 2020 season. In preseason draft rankings from ESPN, he was ranked 24th by Mel Kiper (in May)and 12th by Todd McShay (in August). He has dropped outside Kiper’s top 25 and is 20th, according to McShay.

LSU defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin

Like Rousseau, he has only one strong year of film. It was enough for him to be a preseason top-25 prospect according to ESPN’s analysts. But after opting out of the full season, he could fall all the way to Day 3.

LSU receiver Ja’Marr Chase

The 2019 Biletnikoff Award winner as the nation’s top receiver remains a top-five prospect. Skipping 2020 did not appear to hurt him at all.

Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell

Sewell hasn’t fallen much since skipping 2020; he was a top-two prospect in the preseason and is still in the top eight. But McShay said it’s possible that a team with many offensive holes chooses a more proven prospect, like Florida tight end Kyle Pitts, over Sewell, forcing the former Ducks star to slide slightly.

Oregon safety Jevon Holland

After 2019, he was a top-20 prospect according to Kiper and McShay. Now he’s 56th in McShay’s rankings and a likely Day 2 selection.

Minnesota receiver Rashod Bateman

He opted out because of coronavirus concerns in August, opted back in when the Big Ten restarted and opted out again in November. He was a top-10 prospect in the preseason but is now a fringe first-round pick.

 

 

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10 NFL draft prospects who could have better careers as pros: Davis Mills, Jayson Oweh could break out

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Davis Mills, QB, Stanford: After the five likely early first-round quarterbacks, it's difficult to find another surefire starter in this class. For any team willing to bet big on traits over experience, however, Mills might be the next tier's most attractive option. There's still something of a disconnect in the former five-star recruit's game, as he at times alternates between delivering dazzling tight-window throws and making head-scratching decisions. Ultimately, it's clear that making just 11 starts across two years has inhibited his development, as he too often is undone by lapses in his footwork or being forced off his first read. Yet the skill set of a potential starter is waiting if a coaching staff can repair those problem areas.

Rhamondre Stevenson, RB, Oklahoma: An 18-carry, 186-yard outing in Oklahoma's Cotton Bowl romp of Florida left many wondering what more Stevenson could have done in his collegiate career. The junior college transfer and backup in 2019 was suspended for the first six games of last season due to a failed drug test, but he still managed to lead the Sooners with 665 rushing yards and seven touchdowns on 101 carries. Stevenson moves far more nimbly than one would expect from a 6-0, 231-pound back, though he doesn't run as powerfully as his size would suggest. Even if he isn't selected until Day 3 and doesn't take on a featured role, Stevenson's best playing days might still be ahead of him.

Simi Fehoko, WR, Stanford: In his final college game, Fehoko showed his potential to be a dominant, go-to target with 16 catches for 230 yards and three touchdowns in a double-overtime win against UCLA. That production, however, represented a high point he never came close to matching at any other point in his career, during which he recorded 62 catches and made just five starts. At 6-4 and 222 pounds with a penchant for making circus catches and using his speed (4.43 seconds in the 40) to beat cornerbacks vertically, Fehoko evokes comparisons to Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf. While his acclimation to the NFL might be extended given his unpolished routes and issues with drops, few other receivers in this class can match his upside.

Josh Palmer, WR, Tennessee: With potentially six of the top seven wide receivers in this year's draft coming from the Southeastern Conference, it's easy to understand why Palmer didn't garner much national attention during a season in which he posted just 33 catches for 475 yards. Yet it was clear that Tennessee's lackluster aerial attack was attributable primarily to coaching and the play of the Volunteers' quarterbacks rather than Palmer. The 6-1, 210-pound target turned heads at the Senior Bowl with his determined route-running and physical play. As a potential third- or fourth-round pick, Palmer could be a starting receiver who satisfies the role of making tough catches in traffic and handling other unglamorous but important work.

Ihmir Smith-Marsette, WR, Iowa: Getting open downfield was never an issue for Smith-Marsette, who routinely ran past defensive backs for big-play looks. But Iowa's shaky quarterback play left many of those opportunities unrealized, and he recorded just 25 catches for a team-best 345 yards a senior. Projecting as a deep-threat specialist, Smith-Marsette will have to demonstrate he can catch passes more comfortably than he did in college and avoid being erased by more physical defensive backs. But NFL teams will find ways to position him for success, particularly on special teams after he averaged 26.7 yards per kick return for the Hawkeyes.

Tommy Tremble, TE, Notre Dame: With 2020 second-round pick Cole Kmet and star freshman Michael Mayer being used heavily as tight ends in Notre Dame's passing attack, Tremble recorded just 35 catches and 401 yards in two years while frequently relegated to a role in which he blew open holes in the run game. In the NFL, however, he may have untapped potential as an H-back or fullback. His drops and underdeveloped route-running might signal some early bumps in his career, but Tremble offers the athleticism to be a more productive pass catcher while still earning his keep as a bulldozing blocker. 

 

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2 hours ago, Snorkelson said:

Is anyone a bit scared off or affected by the players who opted out last year? As a lions fan that sees Chase mocked at 1.07 it brings back visions of Mike Williams 2005. Granted, you can’t judge chase based on that. Williams was still highly regarded, ran 4.57 at the combine (6’5” 220), and had put up solid numbers at USC. He had to sit out a year, and never really panned out, other than a decent stretch with the Seahawks. 
No one seems to mention this much when talking about chase or trey lance. Is it worth considering when spending a top 10 nfl pick or a top 5 dynasty rookie pick?

Trey Lance has a RS freshman year at ND State under his belt, not even this past year, and is probably top 10.  

We could easily look back in a few years and be like, lol, how could anyone do that?

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4 minutes ago, massraider said:

Trey Lance has a RS freshman year at ND State under his belt, not even this past year, and is probably top 10.  

We could easily look back in a few years and be like, lol, how could anyone do that?

See, I don’t think he goes in the top 10. I don’t see 5 qbs going top 10, and I’ll be surprised if SF takes Jones at 3. I think a lot of the teams that could go qb will pass, like Atlanta and Detroit. Maybe someone moves up, but again that’s hard to justify, in my eyes, sacrificing picks to move up for prospective players like Lance or someone who lacks arm talent like Jones. Talking heads just talking out their butts.

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Austin Gayle @PFF_AustinGayle

Highest single-season yards per route run averages from the slot among Power 5 WRs since 2016:

1. DeVonta Smith, 2020 (5.6)

2. Jaylen Waddle, 2018 (4.5)
3. Tutu Atwell, 2019 (4.4)

4. Greg Dortch, 2017 (3.6)
5. Jerry Jeudy, 2018 (3.6)
6. Elijah Moore, 2020 (3.6)

https://twitter.com/pff_austingayle/status/1380875673540116480?s=21

Quote

Austin Gayle @PFF_AustinGayle

Highest single-season yards per route run averages from the outside among Power 5 WRs since 2016:

1. Dede Westbrook, 2016 (3.86)

2. DeVonta Smith, 2020 (3.68)
3. Rashod Bateman, 2019 (3.60)

4. Chris Olave, 2019 (3.53)
5. Tee Higgins, 2017 (3.45)

https://twitter.com/pff_austingayle/status/1380877163646308360?s=21

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