It’s draft week. Everybody starts getting excited and thinking about their own fantasy drafts.
A couple of weeks ago I did my defensive big board. Now we’re back to add in the offense.
The most popular question we get this time of year is “When do I take my IDPs compared to the offensive players?”
As a rule, in a rookie draft, you start drafting your IDP assets in the second round. Most of the time the IDPs start coming off the board in the middle of the second round, but I’ve seen them go a bit earlier in a weak offensive year.
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That leads us to this year. It’s a little dicey to try to take NFL mock drafts and ascertain who the best IDP fits are going to be. Landing spot is key to IDP rookies. What I’ve done with this article is assume best case scenario for the IDP assets. I have then interspersed them with my offensive rankings. Yes, these are subjective. Yes, I’m sure 23 percent of you will hate them. But they are a good starting point for your own rankings.
So, let’s take a look at my combined big board stacks up. Remember, this is a fantasy version, not NFL talent.
So you’ve got questions. I’ve got answers, some of which surprised even me as I was putting this together.
First, it’s clear that I prefer the running backs to the wide receivers in this draft. I only have 13 wideouts listed in 60 players, with six of those going in the first round. Not a lot of WR depth.
On the IDP side our first three come off the board in the middle of Round 2 and no surprise it’s the three linebackers that I consider to be three-down players in this draft. Yes, I know Jalen Reeves-Maybin has an injury history, but when he’s on the field, he is exactly the kind of MLB I want for my team. Those three linebackers are the only IDPs off the board in the first 24 picks.
There is another cluster of linebackers in the third round. Remember that this list is best case scenario in terms of a landing spot, but I think Duke Riley, Jarrad Davis, and Raekwon McMillan are mostly interchangeable in that round.
You’ll also notice I didn’t take a single cornerback and only a handful of safeties. Defensive backs are a dime a dozen in the IDP world, so I’m not going to invest very much in them, if at all. That is unfortunate because this class of cornerbacks is one of the best we have seen in some time.
That brings us to the quarterbacks. It’s not often they go much earlier than the second round in standard rookie drafts and this class doesn’t have the firepower of other years. I’m on record as saying that I like Deshaun Watson the best of the bunch, but if Mitchell Trubisky or Patrick Mahomes lands in a really good situation, they might jump Watson.
As I move into the later rounds of drafts, you see that I’m more willing to make dart throws on players. This is usually the range that I’ll grab an Edge player with the hopes of using him as a bye week fill in and that he hits the sack gold mine that week. It’s also where I might grab a defensive tackle if he lands in a good spot.
For the most part, I lean strong safeties over free safety, but I think Malik Hooker will generate enough turnovers that I am willing to make him a last round flyer. Odds are good though that if you are in a league with inexperience IDP players that someone may grab him early based on name value or the fact that he should go early in the NFL Draft. If he falls to late, fine, but do not reach for him.
All the players on the far right were other players that I considered for this exercise. You can consider them the “just missed” category if you like. Most of those are cornerbacks, pass rush specialists or boom-bust guys that depending on how my draft falls I may gamble on.
If you have any questions about your favorite player or thoughts on this article, please comment below or reach out to me @BigBoardIDP on Twitter.
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