2023 Underdog Top-240 Best Ball Rankings


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2023 Underdog Top-240 Best Ball Rankings

It’s never too early for best ball.

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These are my top-240 best ball rankings:

Round 1-2 Best Ball Rankings

1. WR1 Justin Jefferson

2. WR2 Ja’Marr Chase

3. RB1 Christian McCaffrey

4. TE1 Travis Kelce

5. WR3 Tyreek Hill

6. WR4 Cooper Kupp

7. WR5 Stefon Diggs

8. RB2 Saquon Barkley

9. RB3 Jonathan Taylor

10. WR6 Davante Adams

11. RB4 Austin Ekeler

12. WR7 CeeDee Lamb

13. WR8 A.J. Brown

14. RB5 Bijan Robinson

15. RB6 Ken Walker

16. WR9 Amon-Ra St. Brown

17. WR10 Jaylen Waddle

18. QB1 Josh Allen

19. WR11 DeVonta Smith

20. WR12 Garrett Wilson

21. RB7 Nick Chubb

22. RB8 Josh Jacobs

23. QB2 Jalen Hurts

24. QB3 Patrick Mahomes

Projection Points

With very few bell-cow running backs left, wide receivers and all of the top fantasy quarterbacks are being pushed up the board in early drafts. The QBs are pricey, but it’s hard to argue against the safety/edge that having one of Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts, or Patrick Mahomes provides.

There are a ton of RBs with interesting profiles in the late-rounds – further lowering early-round RB demand and making these QBs a bit easier to swallow.

With that said, Kenneth Walker III stands out as one of the few RBs that doesn’t have any competition for touches and is on a good offense. Walker was the RB9 in fantasy points per game (14.9) as the Seahawks' starter, and that was with a limited receiving role. It’s not hard to project Walker getting even better in his sophomore season.

Nick Chubb just finished as the RB5 in fantasy points per game (15.8) – tied with Saquon Barkley. Yet, he’s going after Breece Hall in early drafts? Make it make sense. Chubb was fantastic yet again last year, finishing second in yards after contact per carry (3.35) and tied for first in missed tackles forced per carry (0.31). Chubb’s spiked games are just like prime Derrick Henry.

Round 3-4 Best Ball Rankings

25. RB8 Derrick Henry

26. RB10 Travis Etienne

27. RB11 Tony Pollard

28. WR13 Tee Higgins

29. RB12 Rhamondre Stevenson

30. WR14 DK Metcalf

31. TE2 Mark Andrews

32. WR15 Chris Olave

33. RB11 Najee Harris

34. QB4 Joe Burrow

35. WR16 Deebo Samuel

36. QB5 Justin Fields

37. TE3 TJ Hockenson

38. RB14 David Montgomery

39. WR17 Amari Cooper

40. RB15 Breece Hall

41. WR18 DeAndre Hopkins

42. QB6 Lamar Jackson

43. WR19 Chris Godwin

44. WR20 Michael Pittman

45. WR21 Mike Williams

46. WR22 Christian Kirk

47. RB16 Aaron Jones

48. RB17 Miles Sanders

Projection Points

Joe Burrow has accounted for 76 total TDs in his last 32 regular season games, which is only eight fewer than Mahomes and Allen. Oh, and Burrow has played two fewer games than Mahomes. Is that good? Again, we’re seeing quarterbacks rightfully pushed up the board because of their high projectable floor and ceiling. Burrow gets a little extra boost in my rankings because stacks with Ja’Marr Chase and/or Tee Higgins should be a priority.

It’s hard not to be excited about Justin Fields. D.J. Moore is the exact receiver this offense needs and the draft capital they received in return for the #1 overall pick should give their front office the assets necessary to help rebuild their offensive line.

Fields flashed league-winning upside last season as yet another example of an incredible scrambler being a cheat code in fantasy football, making his ceiling the QB1 right up there with Allen, Hurts, and Mahomes.

The Lions told us exactly how they feel about D’Andre Swift by signing David Montgomery to a similar deal (in average yearly salary) to Miles Sanders’ new contract with the Panthers. Montgomery is an upgrade over Jamaal Williams and has more receiving upside than meets the eye if the team continues to move away from Swift. I wrote about Montgomery’s fantasy football projection with the Lions in more detail here.

Breece Hall is a tricky projection. He was incredible in his rookie season and looked like he was on the precipice of a massive breakout with 609 scrimmage yards in his first six games. I’m a big believer in his talent, but spending a third-round pick on a running back coming off a knee injury on a team without a QB is a big swing for the fence early. Per our Edwin Porras’ research, the average return time for a running back coming off an ACL tear is 10.7 months. Hall will be 10 months clear from surgery in September.

The Panthers are about to take their QB of the future – C.J. Stroud? – and shored up their backfield with Miles Sanders. He’s clearly a free agent winner and a strong fit in HC Frank Reich’s outside-zone scheme. I wrote about Sanders' fantasy football outlook in Carolina here.

Round 5-6 Best Ball Rankings

49. WR23 Terry McLaurin

50. TE4 George Kittle

51. WR24 D.J. Moore

52. WR25 Christian Watson

53. QB7 Justin Herbert

54. WR26 Calvin Ridley

55. WR27 Drake London

56. WR28 Jerry Jeudy

57. RB18 Dalvin Cook

58. WR29 Jameson Williams

59. TE5 Dallas Goedert

60. TE6 Darren Waller

61. QB8 Trevor Lawrence

62. RB19 Jahmyr Gibbs

63. TE7 Kyle Pitts

64. WR30 Jaxon Smith-Njigba

65. WR31 Tyler Lockett

66. WR32 Keenan Allen

67. WR33 Marquise Brown

68. TE8 Evan Engram

69. WR34 Mike Evans

70. RB20 JK Dobbins

71. RB21 Joe Mixon

72. RB22 Javonte Williams

Projection Points

I’m just a tick lower on Christian Watson than the Underdog market. The potential drop-off from Aaron Rodgers to Jordan Love is real.

For the first time in three years, I am higher than ADP on Kyle Pitts. This is the time to buy with his stock so (relatively) low. The NFC South is wide open and the Falcons have the picks and salary cap to make a big move at quarterback.

With the Chargers nearly $20M over the cap, Keenan Allen is a cut candidate according to The Athletic’s Daniel Popper. Allen is about to be 31 years old, and I’m not sure there is an opportunity out there for him to continue getting anywhere close to the 10.6 targets per game he saw last season.

Joe Mixon finally got the best offensive line of his career, only to squander it with his worst year of his career so far. Among the 33 RBs with at least 150 carries on the season, Mixon ranked dead last in missed tackles forced per carry (0.09) as just 30.5% of his carries gained 5+ yards (32nd). Mixon was once one of the most dynamic runners in the game, but this massive drop-off in skill is a huge concern for his future.

The Bengals will go as far as Joe Burrow takes them, but HC Zac Taylor has to be left wanting more from their inept run game. Mixon will be 27 years old in 2023 and the Bengals can save upwards of $10M by cutting him after June 1, according to The Athletic’s Jay Morrison.

Round 7-8 Best Ball Rankings

73. RB23 Dameon Pierce

74. RB24 Rachaad White

75. WR35 Kadarius Toney

76. WR36 Treylon Burks

77. RB25 Isiah Pacheco

78. WR37 Diontae Johnson

79. WR38 Brandon Aiyuk

80. WR39 Jahan Dotson

81. WR40 George Pickens

82. WR41 Rashod Bateman

83. WR42 Quentin Johnson

84. WR43 Courtland Sutton

85. WR44 Jordan Addison

86. WR45 Zay Flowers

87. QB9 Deshaun Watson

88. QB10 Dak Prescott

89. RB26 Alvin Kamara

90. RB27 Tyler Allgeier

91. RB28 Khalil Herbert

92. RB29 Brian Robinson

93. RB30 Cam Akers

94. RB31D’Andre Swift

95. RB32 James Conner

96. QB10 Daniel Jones

Projection Points

Jahan Dotson quietly popped with 4.2 receptions and 68.1 yards per game over his final five contests of his rookie season. He also cashed in three more TDs in this stretch, giving him 7 on the season. Dotson showed excellent separation skills in his rookie campaign and I see him taking a huge step in 2023. I want him on every one of my teams.

The RB dead zone isn’t so dead in early best-ball tournaments. In fact, I want to live in the Round 7-12 range here.

I’ve got Rachaad White, Khalil Herbert, and Brian Robinson ranked slightly ahead of ADP while Isiah Pacheco and Tyler Allgeier both have 1,100 scrimmage yards and 8-10 TDs as a ceiling outcome even if they don’t have great receiving profiles.

What if the Bears don’t draft a running back with an early pick, and instead just try to rebuild their offensive line? If that happens, Khalil Herbert and D’Onta Foreman are both mispriced by 15+ spots in ADP.

Round 9-10 Best Ball Rankings

97. QB11 Tua Tagovailoa

98. TE9 Pat Freiermuth

99. TE10 David Njoku

100. RB33 Jamaal Williams

101. RB34 Zach Charbonnet

102. RB35 Damien Harris

103. TE11 Dalton Schultz

104. WR46 Jakobi Meyers

105. WR47 Elijah Moore

106. WR48 Darnell Mooney

107. WR49 Brandin Cooks

108. WR50 Josh Palmer

109. WR51 Gabe Davis

110. QB13 Kirk Cousins

111. QB14 Aaron Rodgers

112. WR52 Josh Downs

113. RB36 James Cook

114. RB37 Rashaad Penny

115. RB38 A.J. Dillon

116. QB15 Jared Goff

117. TE11 Dawson Knox

118. TE12 Greg Dulcich

119. RB39 Ken Gainwell

120. RB40 Antonio Gibson

Projection Points

I was higher than the field on Pat Freiermuth last season and it’s easy to be back in at his lowly 111 overall ADP. Over the last two years, Freiermuth has out-scored Kyle Pitts on a per game basis (7.9 to 7.5) without an ounce of the hype Pitts has received.

There are going to be a few running backs in this range that don’t pan out, but I’m of the opinion that going WR-heavy early is optimal because of the amount of mid- to late-round runners there are right now…

Jamaal Williams is a solid running mate for Alvin Kamara and can obviously handle 18-22 touches in any game that Kamara should miss due to potential suspension. Not only does Williams have standalone usability as the early-down RB, but I think he has untapped upside as a receiver after barely being involved in the Lions pass game last year.

Rashaad Penny could legitimately lead the league in YPC if he stays healthy for 120-150 carries. The Eagles will likely be in the market for a rookie to add to their depth chart, but Ken Gainwell is set up to expand his role as well.

Damien Harris is the best early-down and short-yardage RB the Bills have ever had in the Josh Allen era and he’s a great fit with James Cook’s skillset. That backfield is ambiguous for season-long leagues where we have start/sit decisions, but I absolutely want to include Harris in my draft plan in every best-ball league as an RB3/4 target. Harris has 8-10 TD upside if the Bills are serious about running Josh Allen a little bit less.

While Brian Robinson started to look healthy and gain steam late last season, Antonio Gibson finally got an expanded role in the passing game. J.D. McKissic (neck) is officially gone as well.

You can make a case for any of the running backs in this range to not just have usable weeks, but far exceed their ADP.

Round 11-12 Best Ball Rankings

121. QB16 Geno Smith

122. WR53 JuJu Smith-Schuster

123. WR54 Zay Jones

124. WR55 Michael Thomas

125. WR56 Donovan-Peoples Jones

126. WR57 Jalin Hyatt

127. WR58 Adam Thielen

128. WR59 KJ Osborn

129. WR60 Tyler Boyd

130. WR61 Allen Lazard

131. QB17 Russell Wilson

132. RB41 Samaje Perine

133. RB42 Alexander Mattison

134. RB43 Devon Achane

135. QB18 Kyler Murray

136. QB19 Derek Carr

137. TE13 Cole Kmet

138. RB44 Raheem Mostert

139. RB45 Devin Singletary

140. TE15 Chig Okonkwo

141. QB20 Matthew Stafford

142. QB21 Trey Lance

143. RB46 Elijah Mitchell

144. RB47 Jeff Wilson

Projection Points

While the Cardinals organization goes through a massive upheaval, Kyler Murray will be exactly nine months removed from surgery in September. After getting a massive contract extension last year – and with the Cardinals clearly fighting upstream in the division – might the team take it easy with Murray’s rehab in 2023?

We need Kyler to run for fantasy. Plain and simple. It’s more than fair to wonder what he’ll provide as a scrambler when he returns this year. With that said, I’m not taking Kyler at his ADP right now and am largely avoiding what could be a trainwreck offense.

Trey Lance is the most difficult QB projection on the board. You could make a case for him as early as 90 overall or as late as 150 – so this is a bit of a middle-ground ranking. We really have no idea how the 49ers QB situation plays out while it’s fair to wonder what Lance’s mobility will be like after sustaining such a nasty ankle injury. I feel awful for the guy, but the 49ers Super Bowl window is wide open. Do they give Lance another shot?

Round 13-16 Best Ball Rankings

145. RB48 D’Onta Foreman

146. WR62 D.J. Chark

147. WR63 Skyy Moore

148. RB49 Roschon Johnson

149. WR64 Wan’Dale Robinson

150. QB22 Bryce Young

151. TE16 Tyler Higbee

152. WR65 Romeo Doubs

153. WR66 Robert Woods

154. WR67 Alec Pierce

155. WR68 Michael Gallup

156. QB23 Kenny Pickett

157. QB24 CJ Stroud

158. QB25 Anthony Richardson

159. QB26 Jordan Love

160. WR69 Nico Collins

161. RB50 Kareem Hunt

162. RB51 Tank Bigsby

163. RB52 Tyaje Spears

164. TE17 Taysom Hill

165. RB53 Jaylen Warren

166. WR70 Chase Claypool

167. WR71 Curtis Samuel

168. TE18 Michael Mayer

169. WR72 Rashid Shaheed

170. WR73 Darius Slayton

171. WR74 Mecole Hardman

172. WR75 Rashee Rice

173. WR76 Kayshon Boutte

174. WR77 Rondale Moore

175. WR78 Isaiah Hodgins

176. WR79 Marvin Mims

177. WR80 Marquez Valdes-Scantling

178. WR81 Odell Beckham

179. TE19 Trey McBride

180. TE20 Noah Fant

181. RB54 Cordarrelle Patterson

182. RB55 Leonard Fournette

183. RB56 Ezekiel Elliott

184. QB27 Mac Jones

185. WR82 DeVante Parker

186. WR83 A.T. Perry

187. WR84 Tim Patrick

188. WR85 Khalil Shakir

189. WR86 Parris Campbell

190. WR87 Hunter Renfrow

191. WR88 Tyquan Thornton

192. WR89 Terrace Marshall

Round 17-20 Best Ball Rankings

193. QB28 Brock Purdy

194. QB29 Ryan Tannehill

195. QB30 Jimmy Garoppolo

196. TE21 Hayden Hurst

197. TE22 Mike Gesicki

198. TE23 Jake Ferguson

199. RB57 Michael Carter

200. RB58 Clyde Edwards-Helaire

201. RB59 Zach Evans

202. RB60 Jerick McKinnon

203. TE24 Luke Musgrave

204. TE25 Gerald Everett

205. TE26 Hunter Henry

206. WR90 Allen Robinson

207. WR91 John Metchie

208. WR92 Cedric Tillman

209. WR93 Van Jefferson

210. WR94 Corey Davis

211. WR95 Braxton Berrios

212. WR96 Isaiah McKenzie

213. TE27 Juwan Johnson

214. RB61 Kenny McIntosh

215. RB62 DeWayne McBride

216. TE28 Isaiah Likely

217. TE29 Jelani Woods

218. QB31 Sam Howell

219. RB63 Sean Tucker

220. TE30 Tyler Conklin

221. TE31 Dalton Kincaid

222. WR97 Mack Hollins

223. RB64 Chuba Hubbard

224. RB65 Jerome Ford

225. QB32 Will Levis

226. TE32 Zach Ertz

227. RB66 Kyren Williams

228. RB67 Zonovan Knight

229. RB68 Zamir White

230. RB69 Boston Scott

231. WR98 Kendrick Bourne

232. RB70 Kendre Miller

233. RB71 Chase Brown

234. RB72 Evan Hull

235. RB73 Chase Edmonds

236. RB74 James Robinson

237. RB75 Nyheim Hines

238. RB76 Eric Gray

239. QB33 Baker Mayfield

240. TE33 Irv Smith

Graham Barfield blends data and film together to create some of the most unique content in the fantasy football industry. Barfield is FantasyPoints’ Director of Analytics and formerly worked for the NFL Network, Fantasy Guru, and Rotoworld.