Perfect Draft Series: Drafting 10th in a 10 Team PPR
For my second iteration of the Perfect Draft, I will be drafting 10th in a 10 team PPR league that rosters 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 Flex, and 1 Team Defense (again, stop it with the kickers, people). I chose this draft position to contrast my first Perfect Draft, where I drafted 3rd in a 12-team PPR league with an extra WR slot.
Rather than highlight the new features of Draft Analyzer, such as the player targets, I wanted to use this exercise to emphasize the power of Draft Analyzer and 4for4's rankings. Going into this draft, I still filtered the draft planner for no tight ends between the 2nd and 9th rounds (I'm not opposed to Gronk in the 1st), no quarterbacks before the 10th, and no Team Defense until the final round. In a 10 team league, the "onesie" positions are at even less of a premium compared to 12 team leagues, so waiting to draft quarterbacks and tight ends is not only a viable option, it's probably optimal given how deep the positions figure to be on the waiver wire.
This time around, however, I did not add any specific player targets or exclude early round running backs. With one less WR slot to fill, hoarding pass catchers here isn't quite as important as in a 3WR league, and once again, I wanted to show the power of the software without my personal biases built in.
Round 1, Pick 10, C.J. Anderson, RB, Denver
There may not be a safer running back or player at his position with more upside than C.J. Anderson. From his breakout game in Week 10 last season through Week 17, only DeMarco Murray saw more touches than Anderson’s 192. Denver ran the 4th most red zone plays in 2014 and their 82 running back red zone opportunities (carries + targets) ranked 8th.
Of the top 12 PPR backs last season, Anderson was the only one to account for less than 50% of his team’s backfield touches (45.4%). If Denver’s offense does change at all this year, it’s likely to be more run heavy, which means a bigger pie for a player who will see the majority of the touches. Draft Analyzer is spot on with this pick.
Round 2, Pick 1, Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver
I have no reservations about starting my draft with teammates, as Draft Analyzer suggests. There is a theoretical argument that my week to week upside will be limited, but in this high-powered offense, CJ and DT give me a very nice floor, and there is enough to go around in Denver that my top picks could both have big weeks at any time.
The narrative that Kubiak is a run-first coach has some drafters worried about the passing game in Denver, but Kubiak has led high volume passing attacks in the past. Even if there is some regression in Thomas’ numbers he can still finish as a top fantasy wideout. Thomas is coming off of a season where he led the league in targets and only two teams ran a higher percent of red zone plays to their wide receivers than Denver (39%) in 2014, so there is plenty of room for upside and a possible overall WR1 finish.