This is Part II in a series examining a full-scale mock dynasty league draft hosted by your gracious hosts here at DLF. Part I, which examined rounds one and two and details the participants and scoring, can be found here. You can see the whole draft report here and the team rosters here as well.
In this article, I take a close look at rounds three and four. Teams have put their first two building blocks together and are now starting to round our their rosters. One thing to look at is whether drafters are filling in their starting spots or just taking the best player available. Using your first set of picks to fill in a solid starting lineup is a good way to build a competitive team in the short run, but may leave you devoid of depth or assets for future trades. Always drafting the best player available according to your rankings will leave you with tradeable assets, but may leave you without viable starting options at all position. My personal philosophy is to try and balance both of these strategies. I try to take my best player available within a small range, and use position need to order that range.
|3.01||@Bryan_Fontaine||Dez Bryant, WR DAL|
|3.02||@ChrisWesseling||Jonathan Stewart, RB CAR|
|3.03||@SteveWyremski||Percy Harvin, WR MIN|
|3.04||@EyeoftheGator||Kenny Britt, WR TEN|
|3.05||@RoadWarrior98||Roddy White, WR ATL|
|3.06||@RyanMc23||Darren McFadden, RB OAK|
|3.07||@BeRanDone||Brandon Marshall, WR MIA|
|3.08||@DLFootball||Wes Welker, WR NE|
|3.09||@SetMyRoster||Victor Cruz, WR NYG|
|3.10||@PFF_ChadParsons||Jeremy Maclin, WR PHI|
|3.11||@DynastyTim||Dwayne Bowe WR KC|
|3.12||@jrnall2||DeMarco Murray, RB DAL|
After a fairly unconventional start (multiple quarterbacks in round one and two tight ends in round two), Round three went much more traditionally. Nine of twelve picks going towards wide receivers is a typically expected result as the stability of this position is a key to long term success. It also highlights the gap between the top four dynasty quarterbacks (Rodgers, Newton, Brees, Stafford) and the rest of the quarterbacks, as there will not be another quarterback selected in this mock until round five. Bryan’s trade up to the 3.01 (seven spots up in this round and dropping seven spots in rounds four and six) to go get his guy is what you need to do when someone you are high on is still available at a spot that you perceive has value. Trust your instincts and go get your guy as a general rule.
Wes Welker as the WR14 is a great value and, in my opinion, strikes a good balance between youth and fielding a competitive team from the start. Most expect him to sign some sort of long-term deal in New England, which should give him at least Top 10 ppr value for the next few years with top three upside. I have him as my dynasty WR8 and would be thrilled to get him in the late third.
Dwayne Bowe is just a player I’ll admit I have never had much affinity for. Going into his sixth season, he has just one top 15 PPR season – his touchdown inflated 2010 campaign. While you can look at his finish as the ppr WR20 last year as a glass half full considering the woes of the Kansas City offense, I still see him as too inconsistent to count on week in and week out. The fact that Tim is not using him as a WR1 (having drafted Larry Fitzgerald in Round two) ameliorates this somewhat. I have four other WRs (Jordy Nelson, Vincent Jackson, Miles Austin and Stevie Johnson) who went later in the draft higher than Bowe. It’s also important to note that four spots in personal rankings is virtually nothing and, in this round, with this quality of drafters, I’m pretty much nitpicking to find a “reach.”
My Selection of Kenny Britt at 3.04
Most people probably perceive this pick as reach, and I understand that with Britt coming off an ACL tear and having historical immaturity issues. I actually think that, assuming he can recover from the ACL injury — and all reports indicate he can, may be a good thing for Britt. He stayed in Tennessee to rehab, and based on reports that I’ve read and interviews that I’ve watched, he seems to have turned a corner in terms of maturity.
He is apparently on or ahead of schedule in his rehab and should be ready for training camp. Britt was the PPR WR22 in just 12 games in 2010. Factoring in that he only played about 2.5 games (actually a little less), his 2011 stats roughly extrapolate to 166 targets, 109 receptions, 1850 yards and 19 TDs, or 408 fantasy points – 48 more points than last year’s WR1, Calvin Johnson. Obviously, the touchdown rate probably wouldn’t have kept up, but even with a discount there is a comfortable margin for a top three finish. That kind up upside, coupled with the fact that Britt is just 23 years old, made this an easy pick for me. I’m a risk taker though – its not for everyone.
|4.01||@jrnall2||Marshawn Lynch, RB SEA|
|4.02||@SteveWyremksi||Rookie Pick 1.02|
|4.03||@PFF_ChadParsons||Jordy Nelson, WR GB|
|4.04||@SetMyRoster||C.J. Spiller, RB BUF|
|4.05||@DLFootball||Miles Austin, WR DAL|
|4.06||@BeRanDone||Stevie Johnson, WR BUF|
|4.07||@RyanMc23||Rookie Pick 1.03|
|4.08||@RoadWarrior98||Marques Colston, WR FA|
|4.09||@EyeoftheGator||Aaron Hernandez, TE NE|
|4.10||@DynastyTim||Ahmad Bradshaw, RB NYG|
|4.11||@ChrisWesseling||Vernon Davis, TE SF|
|4.12||@Bryan_Fontaine||Mark Ingram, RB NO|
The first round with two rookie picks as we start to see the upside of the top picks approach the mid-level talent available at running back and wide receiver. In addition, we see the next two tight ends come off of the board. Steve drops down over a round from 8.10 to 9.11 and down eight picks in Round 15 to move up eight spots to grab the 1.02 Rookie Pick. While his draft comments indicate he considered this pick to be Justin Blackmon (I had already made it known that I considered the 1.01 to be Trent Richardson), I wonder if Steve has changed his mind. Either way, considering Brady went in the next round, I think that pick and the 1.03 are slotted about right even if you consider them to be RGIII and Luck (as I do).
Marshawn Lynch off the board as the RB13 is a good value where I have him as the dynasty RB10 after a ppr RB6 finish in 15 games in 2011. I’m not going to assume that his new deal will revert him back to a soft player until I see it. Lynch turns 26 next month and, while he has had three years of 250+ carries, they came in 2007, 2008 and 2011, so much of the wear was less recent. I expect two to three more seasons of top ten ppr running back production from Lynch, which given the current status of numerous committee backfields, just sneaks Lynch into my top ten.
I also thought Jordy Nelson as the WR18 represented a good value (my dynasty WR15). Even assuming that his touchdown rate will regress (it likely will), someone who gets 100 targets in the Green Bay offense is going to have a good shot at a top ten ppr wide receiver finish.
I don’t love Marques Colston as the WR21, especially pairing him with Roddy White. Colston has had microfacture surgery on both knees, and even when this draft took place, looked like a long shot to stay with the Saints. Its hard to believe that, even if he stays healthy, that he can keep top 20 value going into his age 29 season.
My selection of Aaron Hernandez at 4.09
I felt pretty good about this pick when someone who’s opinion I really respect, Rotoworld’s ChrisWesseling, said that he had been hoping for Hernandez in Round four. I can’t really blame him after Hernandez finished as the ppr TE3 in only 14 games on 130 targets (works out to almost 150 in 16 games). His versatility is almost unmatched as he lined up as a TE, WR and RB this year. In addition, he will still only be 22 years old when the 2012 season kicks off. He should easily anchor my TE position for the next eight to ten years.
I’ll probably switch up the format and start analyzing how individual teams came together in Part III of my review of the DLF Mock. In the meantime, feel free to hit me up on Twitter or below with any questions or comments.
 @DLFootball traded 3.01, 4.12 and 6.12 to @Bryan_Fontaine for 3.08, 4.05 and 6.05. .
 @DynastyTim traded 4.02, 9.11 and 15.11 to @SteveWyremski for 4.10, 8.10 and 15.03.