Fantasy: NFL draft instant analysis and projections – Round 1


Find positional rankings, additional analytics, and subscribe to push notifications in the NFL Fantasy News section.

theScore’s Justin Boone provided instant breakdowns of each fantasy-relevant selection in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Joe Burrow, QB, Bengals (1st)

Star potential: ★★★★★
2020 projection (16 departures): 4074 overtaking yards, 20 TDs, 14 INTs
293 yards rushing, 2 touchdowns, 5 SMP

In a project full of uncertainty, Cincinnati selecting Burrow was the only lock to make it to the first round.

From one of the best statistical campaigns we have ever seen from an academic quarterback, Burrow joins a list with an underestimated crop of skill position players in AJ Green, Tyler Boyd, John Ross and Joe Mixon , as well as an offensive-minded coach in Zac Taylor. Don’t let Cincy play the dubious and heavy game that deceives you, it’s a team capable of producing in the air.

If tackler Jonah Williams, the team’s first round pick last year, can regain full health – along with a few more improvements on the line – Burrow will have a chance to deliver immediately. He’s not fast enough to be a real pressing threat from the pros. But it will provide enough yards on the field to increase its fancy value as QB2 with some potential in the first year, and then develop into a possible QB1 on the road. Add him to your list of late quarterbacks to target in 2020.

Fill up: Joe Burrow, A.J. Vert, Tyler Boyd, Joe Mixon, John Ross
Low stock: Andy Dalton

Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Dolphins (5th)

Star potential: ★★★★★
2020 projection (8 departures): 2023 passing yards, 11 TDs, 8 INTs
89 yards rushing, 1 TD, 3 FUM

The Dolphins used the fifth overall pick to select a player they hope will become their franchise quarterback. The only question will be how the organization is tackling his return from a serious hip injury that ended his college career prematurely in 2019. Having a clogging veteran like Ryan Fitzpatrick on the list will allow Miami to take his time with Tua, which is why we are planning him for just eight starts in his first campaign.

Once Tagovailoa hits the field, he will have as many advantages as any quarterback in this class, and the Dolphins have a solid assortment of pass-catchers at DeVante Parker, Preston Williams and Mike Gesicki. However, the chances that Tagovailoa will have a huge fantastic impact as a rookie are slim, especially behind a weak Dolphins offensive line. His limits as a rusher could also cap his fantastic outlook since most quarter-10s run to improve their numbers. In the long run, it can become a fantastic low-end QB1 if it overcomes doubts about durability.

Fill up: DeVante Parker, Preston Williams, Mike Gesicki
Low stock: Ryan Fitzpatrick

Justin Herbert, QB, Chargers (6th)

Star potential: ★★★★ ☆
2020 projection (10 departures): 2216 passing yards, 13 TDs, 11 INTs
260 yards on the ground, 2 TD, 4 FUM

The Chargers have made it clear that they want to slow things down offensively while using their rush attack and defense to win. Tyrod Taylor can run their system and limit turnover, so Herbert will not be assigned to work in the training camp. Expect him to end up fighting mid-season when the team becomes aware of Taylor’s limitations.

Although Herbert is far from a perfect prospect, he could make a similar impact to Josh Allen in the first year with a similar combination of a big arm and a sneaky rushing ability. While surrounded by one of the best collections of NFL talent – Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Hunter Henry and Austin Ekeler – Herbert will be an instant fantastic QB2 the moment he overtakes Taylor on the depth chart. He can also enter the top 12 for stretching, as Allen did late as a rookie.

Fill up: Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Hunter Henry, Austin Ekeler
Low stock: Tyrod Taylor

Henry Ruggs III, WR, Raiders (12th)

Star potential: ★★★★ ☆
2020 projection: 55 receptions, 867 reception yards, 6 TDs

The Raiders have a vacancy at the top of their receiving depth chart and Ruggs has the option of becoming their version of Tyreek Hill. Although Ruggs doesn’t come with all the tools from an elite perspective, it is more than just a stretcher, with a speed of 40 meters and 4.27 seconds that would make Al Davis proud.

Ruggs can line up in multiple positions, makes great adjustments to the ball and is strong enough to fight the defenders in contested shots. The Raiders will use it as their # 1 receiver, which means that the 24 best fantasy numbers are not out of the question, even in its first campaign. We will probably see some inconsistency, however, so it is more realistic to consider Ruggs as a fantastic WR3 with an advantage as a rookie.

Fill up: Henry Ruggs III, Derek Carr
Low stock: Tyrell Williams, Hunter Renfrow

Jerry Jeudy, WR, Broncos (15th)

Star potential: ★★★★★
2020 projection: 63 receptions, 879 reception yards, 7 TDs

Jeudy has the skills to be the best catcher on a team, so landing with an attack in the first place that already features Courtland Sutton is far from ideal. Even so, Jeudy should benefit from a fairly seamless transition to the NFL – his background and ability to separate are ready to go. Despite high-level competition in the SEC, Jeudy regularly turned the heads of college defenders as they tried to follow his cuts.

In order for Jeudy to reach his peak with the Broncos, he will have to show that he can be more physical on the contested takes and clean up some of the inexplicable drops he made at college. My early prospects place him as a high-end WR3 as a rookie with potential for more if he can overtake Sutton when Drew Lock is first read – something that probably won’t happen in 2020.

Stock: Drew Lock
Low stock: Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, Noah Fant

CeeDee Lamb, WR, Cowboys (17th)

Star potential: ★★★★★
2020 projection: 51 receptions, 759 reception yards, 4 TDs

Lamb was the highest ranked widest prospect in my pre-project ranking, but that will change with this selection. The Cowboys are already loaded at the receiver with Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup – who both reached the 1,100-yard mark in 2019 – under contract for at least two more seasons.

Although Lamb has an elite cap to ultimately become the best in the group, he will face stiff target competition early in his career, making him a WR4 in fantasy until further notice. For him to climb higher, he will have to absorb the 83 targets released by Randall Cobb, while cutting off part of Cooper and Gallup’s production – a difficult task for any first-year receiver.

The real winner of this choice is Dak Prescott. Having scored the second highest number of fantastic points in the quarterfinals last year, Prescott now has arguably the best receiving trio in the league at their disposal.

Fill up: Dak Prescott
Low stock: CeeDee Lamb, Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, Blake Jarwin

Jalen Reagor, WR, Eagles (21st)

Star potential: ★★★ ☆☆
2020 projection: 37 receptions, 346 receiving yards, 2 TDs

The Eagles drafted out of necessity in the first round after an unprecedented wave of injuries that tore down their receiver body in 2019 and because of Alshon Jeffery’s uncertain future.

Reagor is a dynamic playmaker and explosive returning man who presents more of an inconsistent weapon than a full-time star among pros. His running route is not technical enough to excel in the slot and he has not demonstrated his ability to beat outside media coverage. Its production also dropped dramatically in its last year at TCU, despite a lower level of competition.

While it’s a good choice for the Eagles’ offense as a whole because of its lack of speed behind DeSean Jackson, keep your expectations for Reagor in check. He could start slowly like JJ Arcega-Whiteside did in his disappointing rookie campaign. Reagor will be an end-of-round goal at best in the drafting leagues, unless the team leaves Jeffery before week 1.

Fill up: Jalen Reagor, Carson Wentz
Low stock: Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson, JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert

Justin Jefferson, WR, Vikings (22nd)

Star potential: ★★★★ ☆
2020 projection: 49 receptions, 681 receiving yards, 4 TDs

There is nothing particularly exciting about Jefferson being recruited by a Minnesota team formed around the race. He will slip into the former role of Stefon Diggs, but Jefferson is not the same type of player. The rookie is actually looming much closer to his new teammate Adam Thielen’s skill set – he has big hands and excels at his shots out of the slot.

Jefferson posted an absurd 91% catch rate en route to 111 receptions, 1,540 yards and 18 touchdowns last season at LSU. However, these numbers have been inflated thanks to an excellent plan and good quarterback play.

While Jefferson has all the tools to be a high volume NFL producer, he is about to run into the same problem that forced Diggs to leave Minnesota – a lack of targets. His arrival also hurts the rest of the Vikings’ pass catchers. Thielen is likely to play more outdoors – the area of ​​the field where he is less effective. Irv Smith Jr. and Kyle Rudolph are located further in the depth table.

Refuel: Kirk Cousins
Low stock: Adam Thielen, Irv Smith Jr., Kyle Rudolph

Brandon Aiyuk, WR, 49ers (25th)

Star potential: ★★★ ☆☆
2020 projection: 43 receptions, 649 reception yards, 4 TDs

Incoming offensive prospects dream of ending up with the 49ers, where Kyle Shanahan has a reputation for getting the most out of his players. Aiyuk is versatile with a great capacity for play, but he will have to evolve to reach his peak in the NFL. Developing and refining his route tree will be the first thing to tackle, and he will have to learn to cope with media coverage. If he can evolve in these areas, he could be a productive asset in front of Deebo Samuel.

Aiyuk has just undergone basic muscle surgery, and although he should be in good health in time for training camp, it is unknown if the procedure will affect his recruit prospects. What we do know is that San Francisco is looking for another playmaker at the receiver level and Aiyuk has the track inside the job, greatly increasing his fantastic value. It should appear on your high-level target list at the end of the cycle.

Fill up: Brandon Aiyuk, Jimmy Garoppolo
Low stock: Jalen Hurd, Dante Pettis, Kendrick Bourne

Jordan Love, QB, Packers (26th)

Star potential: ★★★ ☆☆
2020 projection: Will support Aaron Rodgers for at least two years

History repeats itself as the Packers begin to wisely prepare for life without Aaron Rodgers by drafting his potential successor in the same way that the double MVP was brought to learn under Brett Favre.

Love is a natural pitcher who sometimes shows the talent of the elite, but has trouble making decisions. It will be a project for Matt LaFleur’s coaching staff, and spending a few seasons studying one of the greatest coaches ever playing this position is excellent for his quarterback education.

This is also good news for the fantastic long-term prospects of the 27-year-old star Davante Adams as it improves his chances of having a quality starter to replace Rodgers on the road.

Fill up: Jordan Love, Davante Adams
Low stock: None

Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, Chiefs (32nd)

Star potential: ★★★★★
2020 projection: 214 runs, 984 rushing yards, 7 TDs, 2 FUMs
41 receptions, 278 receiving yards, 1 TD

With the final choice in the first round, the defending champions had the luxury of going in several directions but chose to give another weapon to Patrick Mahomes in attack.

Damien Williams, a very good performer in good health, was a limited player enjoying an exceptional situation. Edwards-Helaire will now have the chance to show what a more talented ball carrier can do when the defenses are aimed at slowing down the Chiefs’ attack.

Edwards-Helaire is a compact three-down rusher with excellent receiving skills, and has just completed a monster season at LSU. He’s extremely fast and dynamic in space, so expect the Chiefs to take advantage of his journey. It’s not hyperbole to say that Edwards-Helaire has a top 12 fantasy in this attack even as a rookie, although he is likely to fall just outside this range in my next update. .

Fill up: Clyde Edwards-Helaire
Low stock: Damien Williams, Darwin Thompson, DeAndre Washington


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here