We are embarking on the final leg of the rookie draft and there’s still some talent left on the board. This year’s class of rookies is deeper and could allow us to find some gems in the back half of the draft. Considering this class is deep at running back and tight end, the odds are good there could be a prospect in the fourth round who you could draft.
Also, since the running back position is saturated with value, we could see some wide receivers slip in rookie drafts. This is the year to wait it out to the fourth round to see who slides in the draft.
HISTORICAL CONSENSUS PICKS
- 4.09 – Daniel Bellinger, TE NYG
- 4.10 – Cade Otton, TE TB
- 4.11 – Ty Chandler, RB MIN
- 4.12 – Jeremy Ruckert, TE NYJ
- 4.09 – Davis Mills, QB HOU
- 4.10 – Jaret Patterson, RB WAS
- 4.11 – Seth Williams, WR DEN
- 4.12 – Kene Nwangwu, RB MIN
- 4.09 – Albert Okwuegbunam, TE DEN
- 4.10 – Dalton Keene, TE NE
- 4.11 – Gabriel Davis, WR BUF
- 4.12 – Collin Johnson, JAC
From what we see here, I believe the market is playing the backend of the fourth round correctly. 41.66 percent of the players selected here are tight ends. These are more than likely dynasty gamers who are deciding to pay down at the position rather than spending a first or second-round rookie pick on a tight end.
As we all know, tight end scoring in fantasy football is very volatile from week to week, and avoiding taking on additional risk by spending top picks in rookie drafts is a safe route to take. Since the late-round tight ends have limited sunk costs, the risk of drafting them is limited. If they start producing they can provide a similar outcome compared to the tight ends who were drafted higher in rookie drafts.
Gabriel Davis is the name that is flashing in lights here. He currently holds the most dynasty value. Davis has been a boom-or-bust player throughout his short career. The Bills’ offense is very explosive and will fuel his production as long as he’s on the field.
Even though the Davis Mills era is coming to an end, he did provide a solid return on the investment for a fourth-round rookie pick. We should be drafting these players with zero expectations and any value gained from the selection should be considered a win.
There are three running backs selected in this portion of the draft over the last three years. This is a good time to take a flier on a running back because all it takes is an opportunity during the season for their value to spike. Due to natural attrition at the running back position, that could randomly happen for just about any late-round rookie running back.
2023 POTENTIAL OPTIONS
- AT Perry, WR Wake Forest
- Puka Nacua, WR BYU
- Chris Rodriguez, RB Kentucky
- Evan Hull, RB Northwestern
- Sam LaPorta, TE Iowa
- Ronnie Bell, WR Michigan
- Dontayvion Wicks, WR Virginia
- Jake Haener, QB Fresno State
- Max Duggan, QB TCU
This year’s draft presents plenty of talent to speculate on in the fourth round of rookie drafts. Most of these prospects project to get drafted on day three of the NFL Draft. Chris Rodriguez and Evan Hull both have good production profiles for this stage of the rookie draft.
The wide receiver spot has some talent still left on the board. Dontayvion Wicks, Puka Nacua, and Ronnie Bell were all at the Senior Bowl. AT Perry is an older prospect who has some good tape. All of these receivers bring something to the table that could allow them to climb an NFL depth chart and potentially provide some production in fantasy.
No matter how deep the talent pool is all of the players in the fourth round of rookie drafts will be speculation adds in dynasty. This is a good spot to speculate on a quarterback or tight end if you need one. This is a deep tight-end class that could deliver a return on the investment this late in the draft.
Let’s take a look at some potential trade options by using the DLF Trade Analyzer!
- Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR KC
- Chase Edmonds, RB DEN
- Nyheim Hines, RB BUF
There are still some moves to make if you want to trade out of the pick. It is not a lucrative spot, but you might be able to patch a hole in the wall. Valdes-Scantling holds a close value to the 4.09 pick in the DLF Trade Analyzer. He’s on the Chiefs and could provide a few positive games. Hines and Edmonds are currently on the ropes in their careers but could deliver some production if natural attrition breaks their way.
- Ty Chandler, RB MIN
- Hassan Haskins, RB TEN
- Juwan Johnson, TE NO
Chandler is a very talented backup running back. Alexander Mattison is expected to test the waters in free agency, leaving opportunities open in the backfield for one of the backups to step up. Johnson is a restricted free agent. Depending on where he goes in free agency, he could provide cheap depth to your dynasty team. Haskins is a thick running back who could be a speculative add if you want to have an insurance policy just in case Derrick Henry gets injured during the season.
- Malik Davis, RB DAL
- Isaiah McKenzie, WR BUF
- Russell Gage, WR TB
Davis is signed with the Cowboys through 2023. If they don’t draft another running back, then he might work his way into some work if something happens to Ezekiel Elliott or Tony Pollard. McKenzie boasted a 13 percent target share on one of the most explosive offenses in the league last season. Gage is a veteran who can provide some depth to your roster.
- Kyren Williams, RB LAR
- Jalen Tolbert, WR DAL
- Devin Duvernay, WR BAL
Williams is currently the RB2 on the Rams behind Cam Akers. There’s a chance he delivers spot production if he gets an opportunity to start a few games. Tolbert had a rough rookie season, but he’s a small-school prospect who might be able to turn things around. Duvernay can deliver some splash games a few times in a season.
Unless you absolutely need depth for your dynasty team, you might be better off making the pick this late in the draft. At this price range, it’s going to be hard to find a player who can deliver enough upside to make a difference.
This year’s draft is more talented compared to other years. Even at this stage of the draft, there are still some good options that dynasty gamers can go after. However, the odds are stacked against these prospects. Many of these players will be day three selections. Their NFL teams won’t have much sunk cost invested in them, making it easy for them to pivot away from them if they want to bring in another player.
At this part of the draft, you shouldn’t worry about ADP. Just draft your guy. If there’s an under-the-radar running back you want on your roster, go ahead, and draft him a few spots higher. This is the part of the draft where you can put caution to the wind and take that dart throw. Most of the players in this range of the draft are not going to hit, so it’s okay to go after the player you fell in love with during the draft process.