Forecasting 2022 NFL Rookie LB Success: 3-Year Model
The 2022 NFL Draft is now in the books, giving us dozens of new rookie players to consider for our fantasy teams. In this article, I will discuss some of the best options available at linebacker in rookie IDP drafts.
While we don't have great ADP for IDP rookie drafts, it is clear that the consensus top linebacker is Devin Lloyd, who was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars. He scores near the top in my models as well, and no one can argue with the landing spot. Lloyd is set up to be a three-down player right away, making him fantasy viable in his first season.
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Below, we will look at some of the linebackers you can get later in the draft that still have a reasonable chance to turn into productive assets for your dynasty team at some point in the next few years.
Forecasting Linebacker Success
As in the past three seasons, I estimate the odds of each player putting up a top-24 season within the first three years of their career by using a combination of two analytical models. The first is a standard statistical model (built using logistic regression) and the second is a more sophisticated machine learning model. The odds reported below take an average of those two models.
Last season, the model did a great job of identifying Nick Bolton. He scored highest in the models and went on to finish top-20 in tackles in his first season. The models also had some great picks in the prior season. While the results of the last couple of years leave me feeling good about the quality of the model, its output should not be used as the sole basis for ranking players. In particular, I combine them with other information such as Mike Woellert's estimations in order to rank them into tiers and then look for the options that seem most undervalued where they are being drafted.
This season, here are the players that stand out to me as most undervalued (the full table of rankings appears at the bottom of the page).
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