Dynasty League Football


A View from the 1.12: Rookie Draft Strategy

League-winner last year? We examine your options in rookie drafts.

For many dynasty players, the highlight of the off-season is the annual rookie draft and we are now just mere hours away from many of those drafts kicking off. Once our respective dynasty teams are eliminated from contention, and sometimes even before, we tend to turn our attention to the incoming rookie class and delusions of grandeur take over. In fact, dynasty players spend nearly the entire off-season preparing for how they will use their draft picks, or if they will use them at all.

In this 12-part series, we will use the latest data available here at Dynasty League Football, namely our April Rookie ADP and the Dynasty Trade Finder, to ensure you are as prepared as possible when your draft begins. Based on our most recent ADP data, we’ll suggest the player you could be soon adding to your team, and if you don’t like that, we’ll also include a potential pivot option.

Also, we’ll include options based on the updated 2QB rookie ADP for those who play in that format. Finally, using the Dynasty Trade Finder, we will examine some recent trades that have taken place with each specific draft pick. Each trade is based on 12-team PPR, one-QB leagues.

We all know the first round of rookie drafts includes the players we’ve been hearing about for months, if not years, but difference makers can be found in the second round and beyond, as well. Because of that, we’ll also address the other picks that accompany each respective first-round draft slot.


The Pick: Terrace Marshall, WR

I’ve got several late firsts this year, and if Marshall falls to me, he is my top target at the end of round one. DLF’s Scott Connor did a great job breaking down Marshall in an earlier article despite recent injury-related concerns that are beginning to surface. In a class with several options at the top of the position, many (myself included) think Marshall’s upside is as good – or better than anyone else in this class. Hopefully, he falls in the NFL draft a bit, and the slide keeps his dynasty hype in check for another few weeks.

Possible Pivots

Although I wouldn’t pivot if Marshall were to fall in my lap, both Elijah Moore and Kenneth Gainwell have their supporters and would both be fine picks at 1.12 if Marshall were already gone or if he isn’t your cup of tea.

Trade Value

Superflex Options: Rashod Bateman, WR

This is a win-win no matter what league format you play in. Bateman is my WR2 in this class and is rumored to be some NFL teams’ WR1, so landing him with the 1.12 would be the stuff fantasy dreams (and hopefully championships) are made of.


The Pick: Seth Williams, WR

Auburn’s Williams is one of the more overlooked players in this class of receivers. One of the bigger players in what seems to be an unusually small receiver group, somehow Williams fails to get much attention. If Williams goes as early as some are projecting (top-100 pick), he’ll slowly creep onto the fantasy radar. That will likely result in a rise in his ADP, especially if he finds himself on a pass-happy team in need of playmakers at the position (hello, Green Bay).

Possible Pivots

If you’re running back needy, Trey Sermon should still be on the board, as should Kylin Hill if you’re looking for more of a PPR option at the position. In TE premium leagues, Brevin Jordan is another option to close out round two.

Trade Value

Superflex Options: Pat Freiermuth, TE

With all-world tight end prospect Kyle Pitts getting all of the attention, many are overlooking other options at the position. Penn State’s Freiermuth may not have the upside of Pitts, but he seems like a very safe option at the position, with plenty of potential himself. When you factor in the cost to acquire the top TEs in this class, it’s not crazy to like Freiemuth more than Pitts.


The Pick: Jaret Patterson, RB

I’m embarrassed to tell you how high I have Patterson ranked in this class. If he’s available in the late third in any of my leagues, I’ll have a ton of Patterson shares. I don’t think he’s going to be a breakout star at the position, but he’ll get what is blocked for him, and if he finds himself in a timeshare behind a decent offensive line, he’s someone I have pegged to outperform expectations as a rookie in 2021.

Possible Pivots

The only running back I’m more unreasonably high on than Patterson is Elijah Mitchell. If I have to pick between them at the 3.12, I’ll be making many deals for the 4.01 in an attempt to lock them both up. Jaelon Darden looks to be available at this point in drafts as well, and he presents some upside as an explosive player who might be great in best-ball leagues as early as year one.

Trade Value

  • 3.12 for Odell Beckham (Seriously?)
  • 3.10, 3.12 for 3.03
  • 3.06, 3.12 for 3.02

Superflex Options: Tutu Atwell, WR

In a class of receivers where people are talking about player size, Atwell measured in at 5’8” and 149 pounds. Good luck with that.


The Pick: Larry Rountree, RB

Do you believe in luck? I randomly got the 12th pick in every round, and it ended up being several players that I’m way higher on than consensus. I loved Rountree’s tape. It wasn’t spectacular, but he just looked the part of an NFL-caliber running back to me. His pro-day numbers left a lot to be desired, but as the last pick of the fourth round, at least I’m getting a guy I want to root for at the next level.

Possible Pivots

Are you looking for a lesser-known tight end with upside? Kenny Yeboah is the ultimate late-round dart throw. I’m also a sucker for small-school, Senior Bowl players, and Cade Johnson is staring at me with this pick as well.

Trade Value

Super-Flex Options: Dazz Newsome, WR

I liked Newsome as a late-round sleeper until the 5’10”, 190-pound Tar Heel laid an egg at his pro-day. Draft capital and landing spot might slightly get me back on the bandwagon, but there is minimal upside here.

A View from the 1.12: Rookie Draft Strategy
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Terence McCarthy
2 years ago

Love this series!!!

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