Perfect Draft: 6th in a 12-Team ESPN PPR League
Being smack in the middle of a 12-team league is usually about balance. This season that sixth spot can really go in several different directions, where you can opt for an elite RB if they fall, or take the top WR in the NFL. Drafting from the mean lets you avoid crazy positional runs, but also inhibits the ability to implement game theory into your drafts since there are five teams on one side of you and six on the other. When situated close to the turn of drafts, managers can take a look at nearby teams’ rosters and foreshadow what positional direction they’re likely to go.
In this article, I will walk through a perfect draft with the sixth pick in a 12-team ESPN PPR league. Each pick was optimized using projections and value-based rankings from the 4for4 Draft Analyzer tool.
Draft Analyzer Settings
- Roster Settings: 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 Flex (RB/WR/TE) 1 Kicker, 1 DEF six bench spots
- No restrictions on when to draft positional players: Despite not being the type of drafter to take a QB early, I do like to keep all options open and prefer to be aware if players are falling in a specific draft. This feature sets Draft Analyzer apart so I keep no limits on recommendations.
- No Kicker or D/ST until the last two rounds: I prefer to stream both positions and would rather draft depth for my bench than select either a kicker or team defense before the last two rounds.
- Limit to 1 QB, TE, K, DEF: One way to simulate a league full of seasoned managers is to go to the League Settings from the Home page and change the maximum number of players at each position under the Rosters tab. By capping the “onesie” positions at one, mock drafts become much more realistic, especially in formats like this where there are only 15 total roster spots.
- Targets: Tyler Boyd and Marvin Jones. One amazing feature of Draft Analyzer is the option to target specific players. The software allows you to preselect players before your draft and DA will suggest them before the software’s top recommendation when it gets close to your targets’ ADP. These are two later-round guys that I want to have on my teams this season for reasons I’ll explain as we get to their picks.
For a comprehensive tutorial on setting up Draft Analyzer for your league, read our Draft Analyzer Walkthrough.
Kamara was RB9 in full-PPR leagues last year while missing two contests. He caught the third-most passes among RBs in 2019 and over the past three seasons, he’s hauled in the second-most balls at his position. With his game-breaking ability and PPR goodness, he’s the clear number one addition to this roster.
Draft Analyzer offered me the top TE and a few stud WRs too, so there are plenty of options for those who prefer different constructions for their rosters.
Each round, Draft Analyzer suggests the top available suggestion along with four alternatives, as shown at the top of this section. Throughout the rest of the article, I will note those suggestions as well as my top alternative to the player that I actually selected.
My Top Alternative: Davante Adams
This is not the norm for me, as I tend to shy away from a two-RB start, but I just can’t pass on Austin Ekeler here in a PPR draft. He was RB4 in 2019 in this format and is projected for 79 receptions this season behind just Christian McCaffrey and Alvin Kamara.
I flirted with taking George Kittle, the software’s highest non-QB recommendation, but the dropoff after Ekeler in pass-catching backs is steep and I may even be able to get Kittle on my next pick. I am now free to aim for a WR with massive projected volume in Round 3 or snag Kittle if he makes it back to me.
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