Normally I like to get this series our starting in late November each year.
The 2019 draft class is an odd bunch and so dependent on this year’s underclassmen with many decisions still looming. An earlier entry allows dynasty coaches to get a jump on the assessment of the incoming class and, potentially, trade preparations. But as I mentioned, the last weeks of the college football season were critical for that assessment and even as I write, some top names are still undeclared for the 2019 NFL Draft. While I still would prefer to get this into your hands earlier, it’s far more important to make sure I’m as accurate as possible.
Regardless, it’s time to start looking at the incoming rookie class more closely, those players which can shape your roster for years to come. Whether you brought home the championship, barely made the playoffs or were out of the running early, there’s much to be gained by surveying the incoming rookie class, its depth and the potential impact in fantasy.
What follows is my annual kick-off, of sorts, to the process leading up to the 2019 NFL Rookie Draft and fantasy rookie drafts that follow. This first part is a very general look at the overall depth of the class toward gauging potential value and impact. Following, I then begin poring through tape, articles and as much available information as I can to ascertain individual player value toward building profiles on the top players within each position for each discipline. More tape review and research will result in a top-30 overall ranking followed by a look at some players that which outside the top-30 who have upside. Other expanded rankings will follow based on results of my research. Following the NFL Draft, the pool of players are re-ranked for dynasty purposes.
So, hop on board and follow along as I start this process. This is why you play dynasty!
Just a few thoughts before we get started:
First and foremost, as should be the case in every year, do NOT get carried away. Keep your head in the game and realize that while there are certain to be impact rookies in any class, 2019 included, it’s very difficult to build a winning team with rookies as the foundation. A large majority bust outright and many others barely escape mediocrity. But a keen eye, mindful selection and a little luck can net you a long term asset, potentially as a cornerstone player.
Secondly, the Internet, Twitter and fantasy community in general are awash with self-proclaimed experts and overnight sensations who sell their own version of snake oil. Every year, the community falls in love with rookie prospects and the ‘research’ that follows starts with the love affair first and backs into the research and rating as opposed to the other way around. Choose who you follow very carefully and steer clear of the expert-du-jour or be prepared to pay the price. In many cases, you have to pay the price ($), up front, anyway.
Lastly, resist the urge to make research more complicated than it needs to be. Keep it simple! Find a site or individual that puts in the work, mix in your own thoughts/needs and don’t forget that NFL coaches and their staffs are paid a lot of money to get decisions correct. You don’t need a 100 page document, high priced service or a seat at the Combine to be successful with your draft picks. I’ve researched and read just about every available document looking for an edge and I can tell you, honestly, size or price will likely not materially improve your results. They may look great on paper but doesn’t necessarily equate to greater accuracy.
We here at DLF have been doing we what do since 2006 and many of us have been researching much longer than that. We hope you agree that we have quietly become a trusted source over the years and we certainly stand by our results.
Let’s get to work!
You can find Jeff on Twitter at @dlf_jeff