Every year, a fresh crop of talent is brought into the league. They go from college studs to NFL newbies in a matter of about 6 months. Some guys never miss a beat and become NFL stars. Some never find their footing and turn into duds. While you may not care too much about any team’s rookies but your own, they can have a huge impact on your fantasy team. So listen up!
Everyone wants to get their hands on the newest stud to hit the gridiron. Sometimes people will even spend their first round pick on the highest touted rookie that season (not recommended)! But you’re better than that – why else would you be reading this article? So let’s quickly run down the keys to grabbing some rookies that could win your NFL fantasy leagues this fall without sacrificing the rest of your team.
Draft with your head and not your heart
* We all have players we love, whether they’re your favorite team’s first round pick or the best player from your favorite college. But that doesn’t always make them a great fantasy pick. Leave your emotions at home on draft day.
Don’t fall into a run
* There will be a couple times where one pick will spark someone else to make a similar pick, all of the sudden you realize 5 WRs have been drafted in a row! Don’t let this alter your plan though, when you see 4 or 5 hyped up rookies go off the board, stick to your guns and follow the game plan. There will be plenty of rookies left.
Look for value
* Rookies are the most unproven players in the draft. That being said, some will still cost you a pretty penny – doesn’t that sound crazy to you? Don’t buy in to the hype and overpay for someone who hasn’t played an NFL snap yet. Look for value in the later rounds with some guys who may have been overlooked but will play a big role on their new team
Here are a few NFL rookies to watch for fantasy football in 2016:
*Stud to Pay For: Melvin Gordon
* Gordon is someone you will see come off the board fairly quickly this fall. He was a monster for Wisconsin in college and was a 1st round pick in the spring. He steps into an effective San Diego offense with a veteran QB in Rivers and no clear incumbent at RB. He will get plenty of opportunity to claim the lead role and rack up yards & scores for the Chargers
* Too Expensive: Todd Gurley
* Gurley is a classic example of an overhyped fantasy player. He is coming off of major ACL surgery and stepping into an offense that hasn’t exactly set the world on fire. Gurley will cost you an early pick for someone who might not even play much this year – the Rams aren’t likely to be in contention and have no real reason to force the issue with Gurley. Spend this pick elsewhere. I think that could be great, maybe as soon as next year, but in a redraft league, you should pass on him in 2016.
* Sleeper to Look For: Tyler Lockett
* The Kansas State product has athleticism for days. On a Seahawks team with very little top tier talent at the WR position, Lockett could break out. He would give them an explosive pass catcher who can be defenders on a streak or on a screen. If your league counts kick and/or punt return yardage, Locket should shoot up your draft board. He was a force on returns at KSU and looks as if he’s been given the keys to Seattle’s return game as well.