NFL Draft Round 1 Fantasy Football Winners & Losers

Apr 28, 2023
Round 1 Winners & Losers

The first round of the NFL Draft resulted in 10 offensive skill players being selected, and all 10 should have an immediate impact. In the coming days and weeks, the 4for4 staff will have in-depth player profiles on every relevant rookie’s redraft stock but for now, let’s take a look at the biggest redraft winners and losers from Day 1.

More 2023 NFL Draft Coverage: Round 1 Live Fantasy Recap | Day 2 Predictions | Impact Rookes from Round 1

Round 1 Winners

QB Lamar Jackson, Ravens

Lamar Jackson ended his lengthy contract dispute with the Ravens on Thursday and was promptly rewarded with one of the best wide receiver prospects in the Draft in Zay Flowers. The Flowers selection gives Jackson the best pass-catching corps he has ever had after Baltimore signed Odell Beckham earlier this offseason. Neither Flowers nor Beckham will be pressured to carry the passing game with Rashod Bateman joining them in three-wide sets while Mark Andrews and Isaiah Likely hold down tight end duties. Lamar always has the overall QB1 in his fantasy football range of outcomes but this week puts him squarely in the Josh Allen-Patrick Mahomes tier.

QB Geno Smith, Seahawks

Geno Smith broke out in 2022 with the overall QB5 season and parlayed that into a $75 million contract. Smith was already in a great situation with one of the better pass-catching duos in the league and Seattle improved their wide receiver room by drafting Jaxon Smith-Njigba, the consensus number-one wide receiver in the 2023 NFL Draft. Smith-Njigba will mostly man the slot although he and Lockett will likely move around the formation quite a bit, giving defenses nightmares and Geno a chance to repeat what he did last season. Prior to the Draft, Smith was being drafted as the QB16 in best ball leagues but he should creep back into the QB1 ranks, and rightfully so.

WR Jordan Addison, Vikings

Zay Flowers and Jaxon Smith-Njigba will give a big boost to their quarterbacks’ value but both of those rookies have a lot of competition for targets in 2023. For redraft purposes, Jordan Addison is the biggest winner among the Round 1 wide receivers. The Vikings let Adam Thielen walk this offseason, leaving the WR2 role vacant in Minnesota. Matt Harmon calls Addison “an excellent projection to a flanker/slot position in the NFL…as a strong running mate to a true No. 1 receiver…” Alongside Justin Jefferson, Addison may be in your fantasy lineup as early as Week 1.

RB Bijan Robinson, Falcons

The team that ran at the highest rate in neutral situations last season just drafted what many are calling the best running back prospect since Saquon Barkley. In Arthur Smith’s offense, Bijan Robinson will get every opportunity to live up to his Draft capital. Robinson is a three-down back that makes Tyler Allgeier an afterthought in 2023 fantasy drafts. Robinson was already going as the RB4 in pre-Draft best ball leagues but this landing spot will have him going comfortably in the first round.

RB Rashaad Penny, Eagles

There was a lot of buzz around Bijan to the Eagles, which would have decimated Rashaad Penny’s fantasy value. Penny dodged that bullet and is safe for now as the Eagles presumed starter. There is still a lot of draft left and Philadelphia could even be a team that floats a late-round pick for D’Andre Swift but after Day 1, Penny still has life as an upside fantasy running back.

Round 1 Losers

RB D’Andre Swift, Lions

Even after Detroit signed David Montgomery, there was still hope that D’Andre Swift could present fantasy value in a backfield committee, since he’s done that before. This Lions regime tried to tell us that they weren’t Swifties last year and they drove the point home by selecting running back Jahmyr Gibbs 12th overall. Swift’s best-case scenario is to get traded and have his value resurrected in another offense but his days as an effective Lions back look numbered.

TE Dawson Knox, Bills

The intrigue with Dawson Knox has always been that he is a starting pass-catcher tied to one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Now Knox will be playing alongside a first-round tight end after Buffalo not only drafted Dalton Kincaid with the 25th pick but traded up to do so. Knox will all but fall off fantasy draft boards while Kincaid will be talked about as a fringe fantasy starter since any tight end with an iota of touchdown upside is a fringe fantasy starter.

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