At the end of the day, fantasy is a game about a game and the path to winning starts with exploiting prices. In my opinion, the only way to get useful ADP data is from actual leagues where players have skin in the game. That’s unlike ADP sourced from Big Brand sites that run non-competitive mock drafts where there is always some jabroni that takes five straight quarterbacks and then a kicker in the 6th round. You’re not doing yourself any favors wasting time with that.
Obviously, this will be slanted towards best ball formats, but there will be a fair amount of overlap between regular redraft season-long leagues, too. BB10s are structured like most redraft leagues — your starting roster is 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 FLEX, and 1 D/ST — so the insights and trends will matter for both games.
The BB10 ADP tool is completely free and has filters where you can get fresh data daily. I’ll be comparing the last two weeks of data (6/15 - 6/30) to the previous two after the draft (7/1 - 7/15) here.
Devontae Booker (RB, NYG) — Up 9 spots to 224 overall (19th round)
As the summer has gone on, there has been growing concern over how quickly Saquon Barkley will be able to return to 100%. Mum's the word. Barkley has said “he doesn’t know the answer” if he’ll be able to practice when Giants’ Training Camp fires up next week and he obviously missed all of the team’s workouts in May. While the great Dr. Edwin Porras put together a great article and is resolute that Barkley should be able to return and be close to his old self by Week 1, there is a chance Devontae Booker has to take on a bigger role than the Giants’ expected. Regardless of whether or not Barkley can handle 15 touches or 25 when Week 1 does roll around, Booker is the cheapest true handcuff in fantasy. If Barkley misses time again, New York doesn’t have a clear-cut No. 3 back behind Booker. While other high-upside handcuffs like Tony Pollard and Alexander Mattison go in the 10th-12th rounds, Booker is extremely cheap. He’s a fantastic RB5 or RB6 target.
Sam Darnold (QB, Car) — Up 8 spots to 182 overall (16th round)
Darnold’s rising price is probably because there are very few super late-round QBs that feel “safe.” Other than Darnold, it’s Ben Roethlisberger (162 overall ADP) and Derek Carr (165) in the 14th-15th rounds or Zach Wilson (193) and Jared Goff (205) in the last few. There is no doubt Darnold is surrounded by better talent and coaching now, but that doesn’t mean he’s magically going to change his stripes. Over the last two combined seasons, Darnold ranks third-worst in completion rate, last in touchdown rate, last in passer rating, fifth-worst in sack rate, and last in fantasy points per game.
Jakobi Meyers (WR, NE) — Up 8 spots to 190 overall (16th round)
Meyers was the “most advanced” receiver in Patriots minicamp last month, but is that really surprising? Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne are just now learning the playbook while N’Keal Harry is still a distant fourth on the depth chart. I’ve been largely avoiding Agholor at his inflated 12th-13th round ADP and instead focused more on Meyers and Bourne as the cheap Patriot receivers to target. The only question is who will play the slot? Meyers likely has the inside track — he ran 83% of his routes from the slot last year — but Bourne can play there, too. In fact, Bourne lined up in the slot on 68% of his routes last season in San Francisco per SIS. While Meyers’ ADP is rising based on beat writer hype, Bourne has only been drafted in 5% of BB10 leagues over the last two weeks. My guess is that Bourne will end up being the Patriots “Z” receiver with Agholor at “X” when they are in their 12-personnel (2 WRs, 2 TEs) sets and then Meyers will come on to the field in 11-personnel (3 WRs, 1 TE) and mainly play in the slot only. If he gets that type of near full-time role, Bourne is a super sneaky pick right now.
Mecole Hardman (WR, KC) — Up 6 spots to 124 overall (11th round)
With Sammy Watkins now in Baltimore, the Chiefs have to fill a somewhat sizable role in their attack. Before he got hurt and missed the entire middle of the season, Watkins opened the year with a quietly strong 16% target share as their third fiddle behind Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce in Week 1-5. That was basically the same exact usage that Watkins saw in 2019 when he earned a 15% target share as the Chiefs primary slot receiver. Now, what will happen to that 15-16% share of Patrick Mahomes targets? Well, this could finally be Hardman’s time. He apparently had a great, consistent minicamp which probably put a bit of distance between him, Demarcus Robinson, and Byron Pringle. That said, Hardman (WR53 in ADP) is way more expensive than Pringle (WR86) and Robinson (WR88) and there is still quite a bit of ambiguity on what their roles will be. When you’re taking your WR5, WR6, and WR7 in drafts, you’re really only looking to get 2-3 “usable” weeks out of them and taking a shot on the cheaper end of the Chiefs receivers and attaching yourself to Mahomes makes a ton of sense.
Marlon Mack (RB, Ind) — Down 11 spots to 217 overall (19th round)
Coming off a torn Achilles and blocked by both Superhero Jonathan Taylor and passing-down maven Nyheim Hines, Mack is a wasted pick right now. There is no guarantee he’ll be back to his old self by Week 1 and also no guarantee he’ll have a fantasy viable role if Taylor goes down with an injury. There are at least 5-10 RBs that are much better plays in Mack’s late-round range, including Devontae Booker.
Tarik Cohen (RB, Chi) — Down 8 spots to 161 overall (14th round)
With Training Camp only a week away, it looks like Cohen is behind in his recovery from his ACL tear he suffered in Week 3 last season. Cohen didn’t participate in OTAs or minicamp and it “could be awhile before he feels like himself again” according to the Chicago Daily Herald’s Sean Hammond. That’s not exactly a ringing endorsement. Damien Williams is a far better pick in the late-rounds because he can play on passing downs if Cohen isn’t fully back and he’s David Montgomery’s direct backup should Montgomery miss any time.
Rashaad Penny (RB, Sea) — Down 8 spots to 174 overall (15th round)
The theme of this week’s fallers is running backs coming off of major injuries. Penny has seemingly not been able to stay healthy since the Seahawks took him at 27 overall back in 2018 and is recovering from yet another surgery. This time Penny “had a little work done” in the same knee he tore his ACL back in mid-June. Poor guy. HC Pete Carroll mentioned that he expects Penny back by Training Camp, but Carroll is often overly ambitious with the media and never really tells the full truth when it comes to his players and their injuries or roles. Alex Collins and DeeJay Dallas both "got a lot of work" back in June’s workouts with Chris Carson and Penny both resting. I’m not interested in burning a pick on Penny coming off yet another surgery and potentially getting behind in Training Camp.