Question of the Week: Who is Your First Pick in Fantasy Football?

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Adrian Peterson continues to amaze in his 9th NFL season.

By CHARLIE ENBERG

Maroon-News Staff

The number one pick is actually a tough selection to make this year. There is not one player that convincingly deserves to be taken here, which makes the job a lot harder because the probability of drafting a bust rises sharply. To avoid that risk, I want you to take Adrian Peterson. Generally, I like to take running backs in the first round because receivers are dependent on a solid quarterback who targets them often. This could be problematic and could lead to some inconsistent play. In terms of running backs, the list is pretty thin this year. ESPN rates the top three running backs as AP, Ezekiel Elliot and Todd Gurley. Elliot is completely unproven and Gurley is injury prone and has never completed a full season in the NFL. Meanwhile, Peterson consistently finishes near the top in fantasy points each season due to his hefty workload. On top of that, the Vikings rely on the run game much more than the passing game. Peterson is physically gifted and is one of the few players to look stronger after recovering from a torn ACL. It is a pretty good bet that Peterson will be a top five running back this season, and that is all you can ask for out of a player. Taking Peterson first is a safe pick, but also rewards you with lots of upside and points.  

By REED SCHULTZ

Maroon-News Staff 

My personal strategy for fantasy football in the past has been to pick the star running backs early on in the draft. Formerly those have been players such as Adrian Peterson, Demarco Murray or LeSean McCoy. However, I believe it is becoming more and more difficult to predict who is going to have a strong year on the ground. Every year there seems to be a breakout running back while a past star has been injured or has had a down year. I think selecting a wide-receiver is a smarter bet this year. That is why I believe the clear number one pick in this year’s draft should be Antonio Brown. Statistically speaking, he has been the top wide-receiver in the league the past two years. Brown is a four-time pro-bowler who had 136 receptions, 1834 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns last year. While I believe it is a toss-up who is better between him and Odell Beckham Jr., the lack of wide receiver depth on the Steelers makes me more confident in the numbers he will produce. The Giants have three talented wide-receivers on their roster, all of whom will be fighting for pass targets. If Victor Cruz can stay healthy, he could take significant fantasy points away from OBJ. Furthermore, I believe that Antonio Brown will be the most targeted wide-receiver in the NFL this season. You can’t go wrong between selecting Antonio Brown or OBJ; however, I think selecting a running back like Adrian Peterson first overall would be a mistake. 

By ELLIOT BROACH

Maroon-News Staff

You will find few fantasy football experts who would advise you to pick Ezekiel Elliot first overall in your fantasy draft, but hear me out. Aside from Elliot’s ability to move in and out of cuts and shake tackles, he is a solid pass-catcher and knows how to protect the pocket, which makes him an every down back, and leads to more touches. Furthermore, Romo’s injury adds to Elliot’s stock because the Cowboys offense will become more run-heavy as relying on Dak Prescott or whomever they start is much riskier than putting the ball in Elliot’s hands. The only possible downside is that the Cowboys may have to air- it-out towards the end of blowout games, and there could be a few this year. Even so, the driving reason to grab Elliot is because of his sheer dominance at Ohio State. Elliot had the stats – two consecutive 1800+ yard seasons. However, he showed up most when the stakes were highest, putting up four touchdowns in last year’s Fiesta Bowl. The great thing about Elliot is that he is an all-purpose player. He can operate on third down, at the goal-line and in between the 20’s, which is rare for a running back in the NFL. Taking him at number one is a risky pick, of course, but the fact that the running back pool is thin, coupled with Elliot’s explosive abilities, makes this is a gamble worth taking.