The first annual Branded Sports Fantasy Draft is in the books! I’m going to recap a wild night of roster construction, so buckle up. We have ourselves a 10 team, point per reception league with a snake draft format. The draft order is below, and no, I didn’t rig the order despite what some conspiracy theories have suggested:
- Boston Nick
- Matt Holland
- Nick Ru
- Chicago Eric
- CEO Joe
- Jay Roget
LET’S GET INTO IT
- Bake – Todd Gurley (RB – LAR)
- Vinny – LeVeon Bell (RB – PIT)
- KMess – Ezekiel Elliot (RB – DAL)
- Murt – David Johnson (RB – ARI)
- Boston Nick – Antonio Brown (WR – PIT)
- Matt – Alvin Kamara (RB – NO)
- Nick Ru – Odell Beckham Jr. (WR – NYG)
- Chicago Eric – Kareem Hunt (RB – KC)
- CEO Joe – Saquon Barkley (RB – NYG)
- Jay Roget – Michael Thomas (WR – NO)
Pretty standard first round here. No real surprises. Gurley goes first over Bell for me this year as he’s younger, on a better team, and actually showed up to training camp. Beckham went a little higher than usual, but I can’t blame Ru on that one because he probably wouldn’t be there in the 2nd. Gotta grab your guys when you have the chance.
Best Pick: The CEO with Saquon at #9 is a bargain based on his normal ADP.
Worst Pick: Jay Roget defying conventional wisdom and snagging Thomas when Deandre Hopkins is still on the board.
- Jay Roget – Dalvin Cook (RB – MIN)
- CEO Joe – Deandre Hopkins (WR – HOU)
- Chicago Eric – Julio Jones (WR – ATL)
- Nick Ru – Russell Wilson (QB – SEA)
- Matt – Melvin Gordon (RB – LAC)
- Boston Nick – Leonard Fournette (RB – JAX)
- Murt – Keenan Allen (WR – LAC)
- KMess – AJ Green (WR – CIN)
- Vinny – Christian McCaffrey (RB – CAR)
- Bake – Davante Adams (WR – GB)
A little run on receivers here. I was hoping for Keenan Allen to fall to me but Murt wisely scooped him up. Matt gets a gift with Melvin Gordon in the mid-2nd after starting with Kamara. Again, nothing too out of the ordinary here (except for Ru’s pick, more on that below).
Best Pick: I’m not kissing up to the boss here, but CEO Joe getting gifted Hopkins was a nice treat for him. Also props to Vinny for recognizing that McCaffrey is on the rise big time.
Worst Pick: Ru obviously hasn’t been reading my stuff, because Wilson in the 2nd is borderline insanity.
- Bake – Mike Evans (WR – TB)
- Vinny – Joe Mixon (RB – CIN)
- KMess – Devonta Freeman (RB – ATL)
- Murt – Stefon Diggs (WR – MIN)
- Boston Nick – Rob Gronkowski (TE – NE)
- Matt – Tyreek Hill (WR – KC)
- Nick Ru – Jordan Howard (RB – CHI)
- Chicago Eric – Adam Thielen (WR – MIN)
- CEO Joe – Zach Ertz (TE – PHI)
- Jay Roget – Amari Cooper (WR – OAK)
I kinda knew I’d end up with the Adams-Evans pairing before the draft even started. I wanted to get two stud WRs on the roster while I could, even though Evans concerns me a little bit with the uncertainty at QB in Tampa Bay. Slightly jealous Matt was able to snag Hill, but I couldn’t get myself to pull the trigger just yet. The CEO crushed Jay’s dreams by taking Ertz a pick before his turn.
Best Pick: If Gronk can actually stay healthy this year, grabbing him in the 3rd is a steal, plus you get the feel good story of Boston Nick drafting his hometown hero.
Worst Pick: I think Vinny might have jumped the gun a bit with Mixon.
- Jay Roget – Derrick Henry (RB – TEN)
- CEO Joe – Doug Baldwin (WR – SEA)
- Chicago Eric – Travis Kelce (TE – KC)
- Nick Ru – Juju Smith-Schuster (WR – PIT)
- Matt – Aaron Rodgers (QB – GB)
- Boston Nick – TY Hilton (WR – IND)
- Murt – Alex Collins (RB – BAL)
- KMess – Jarvis Landry (WR – CLE)
- Vinny – Deshaun Watson (QB – HOU)
- Bake – Kenyan Drake (RB – MIA)
I must say, besides one or two wacky picks, I’m very impressed with everyone’s drafting so far. Looks like everyone did their homework. Brings a tear to my eye…
Best Pick: As much as I advocate for taking a QB late, if I was going to take anyone early it would be Watson.
Worst Pick: If Frank Gore gets any sort of meaningful playing time, grabbing Drake in the 4th might come back to haunt me.
- Bake – Royce Freeman (RB – DEN)
- Vinny – Chris Hogan (WR – NE)
- KMess – Tom Brady (QB – NE)
- Murt – Golden Tate (WR – DET)
- Boston Nick- LeSean McCoy (RB – BUF)
- Matt – Larry Fitzgerald (WR – ARI)
- Nick Ru – Carlos Hyde (RB – CLE)
- Chicago Eric – Tarik Cohen (RB – CHI)
- CEO Joe – Jerrick McKinnon (RB – SF)
- Jay Roget – Trey Burton (TE – CHI)
As some Kenyan Drake insurance, I doubled down on RB with potential rookie stud Royce Freeman. Everything I’ve seen in the preseason tells me he’s going to be the guy in Denver. There are definitely some reaches in this round, so things might start to get unpredictable.
Best Pick: Matt snagging Larry Fitz in the 5th is a great value, especially since this is a full point PPR league.
Worst Pick: From Chicago or not, Eric’s pick of Tarik Cohen is a head scratcher, but maybe he’s been hanging out at Soldier Field and knows something the rest of us don’t…
- Jay Roget – Demaryius Thomas (WR – DEN)
- CEO Joe – Allen Robinson (WR – CHI)
- Chicago Eric – Cam Newton (QB – CAR)
- Nick Ru – Jimmy Graham (TE – GB)
- Matt – Josh Gordon (WR – CLE)
- Boston Nick – Drew Brees (QB – NO)
- Murt – Lamar Miller (RB – HOU)
- KMess – Mark Ingram (RB – NO)
- Vinny – Brandin Cooks (WR – LAR)
- Bake – Corey Davis (WR – TEN)
I’ve been eyeing Corey Davis up pretty much all offseason, so I got a little bit of a scare when a text from CEO Joe popped up on my phone that said “Be a real shame if I took Davis here.” What a rascal. But to my delight he opted for Robinson. Matt went with the ultimate risk/reward pick in Josh Gordon, but got him late enough that he can overcome if he’s a bust.
Best Pick: If Deshaun Watson keeps the Texans offense moving the way he did last year, Murt might have gotten herself a steal in Lamar Miller.
Worst Pick: KMess committed the ultimate sin of spending a 6th rounder on Ingram who’s out 5 of the first 6 weeks of the season and is no guarantee to have a huge role when he returns.
- Bake – Greg Olsen (TE – CAR)
- Vinny – Jay Ajayi (RB – PHI)
- KMess – Marvin Jones Jr. (WR – DET)
- Murt – Matthew Stafford (QB – DET)
- Boston Nick – Robert Woods (WR – LAR)
- Matt – Marquise Goodwin (WR – SF)
- Nick Ru – Emmanuel Sanders (WR – DEN)
- Chicago Eric – Ronald Jones II (RB – TB)
- CEO Joe – Kirk Cousins (QB – MIN)
- Jay Roget – Patrick Mahomes II (QB – KC)
The Sanders pick by Ru seemed to upset some of the room, and he’s a good value here coming off a down year. The CEO gets his Michigan State alum QB with Cousins. I know it was a struggle for Murt to wait this long to draft a QB, but I’m proud of her willpower.
Best Pick: I think the Mahomes pickup by the Champagne Man is a sneaky smart move. Risky, but with a huge possible payoff.
Worst Pick: Not to pick on Eric and his RBs, but I haven’t heard one positive report on Ronald Jones this offseason. Barber is the guy to own in Tampa Bay.
- Jay Roget – Nelson Agholor (WR – PHI)
- CEO Joe – Alshon Jeffrey (WR – PHI)
- Chicago Eric – Devin Funchess (WR – CAR)
- Nick Ru – Robby Anderson (WR – NYJ)
- Matt – Delanie Walker (TE – TEN)
- Boston Nick – Dion Lewis (RB – TEN)
- Murt – Michael Crabtree (WR – BAL)
- KMess – Evan Engram (TE -NYG)
- Vinny – David Njoku (TE – CLE)
- Bake – Andrew Luck (QB – IND)
Back to back Birds to start the round. I like the Agholor pickup by Jay because he’s actually going to start the season and should see mad targets. Still not sure when we’ll see Jeffrey in action. Boston Nick goes with a former Patriot in Dion Lewis.
Best Pick: As long as he avoids suspension, Robby Anderson is a nice underrated pick here. He lit it up in the 2nd half of the season.
Worst Pick: I was thinking of the upside with Luck, but was quickly reminded of the possible downside after I made the pick. I might do this one over again if I had the chance. Please play, Andrew.
- Bake – Jamaal Williams (RB – GB)
- Vinny – Sammy Watkins (WR – KC)
- KMess – Cooper Kupp (WR – LAR)
- Murt – Kyle Rudolph (TE – MIN)
- Boston Nick – Eric Ebron (TE – IND)
- Matt – Chris Carson (RB – SEA)
- Nick Ru – Philip Rivers (QB – LAC)
- Chicago Eric – Pierre Garcon (WR – SF)
- CEO Joe – Will Fuller V (WR – HOU)
- Jay Roget – Marshawn Lynch (RB – OAK)
Jamaal Williams has been the apple of my eye for a few weeks now, and getting the Packers’ starting RB in the 9th is a pick I’ll make all day every. I like the CEO going with the upside of Fuller here.
Best Pick: It’s a tie between Jamaal Williams and Chris Carson to me. Both are expected to at least start the season as workhorses, so to get them this late is top notch.
Worst Pick: I’m not even sure that Ebron is the actual starter for the Colts with Jack Doyle there. He might be on the waiver wire shortly.
- Jay Roget – OJ Howard (TE – TB)
- CEO Joe – Rex Burkhead (RB – NE)
- Chicago Eric – Sony Michel (RB – NE)
- Nick Ru – Tevin Coleman (RB – ATL)
- Matt – Julian Edelman (WR – NE)
- Boston Nick – Chris Thompson (RB – WAS)
- Murt – Duke Johnson Jr. (RB – CLE)
- KMess – CJ Anderson (RB – CAR)
- Vinny – Jacksonville DST
- Bake – Jordan Reed (TE – WAS)
I followed my own advice here and went with Reed as my 2nd Tight End. He’s supposedly healthy for the moment, and when he’s healthy he produces like a high end WR, so I’ll take that risk in the 10th. Matt makes a smart move with the Edelman pick because you know he’s gonna be a target vacuum when he returns from suspension. Also, we have our first Defense chosen.
Best Pick: Chris Thompson is a great pluck by Nick following the Derrius Guice injury. He’s going to catch a ton of balls this year. Murt getting Duke this late is a savvy move as well. Both are PPR stars.
Worst Pick: With how the Panthers are planning on feeding McCaffrey, I’m not sure there are going to be many weeks that KMess is going to get much out of CJ Anderson.
- Bake – Peyton Barber (RB – TB)
- Vinny – Mohammed Sanu (WR – ATL)
- KMess – Jamison Crowder (WR – WAS)
- Murt – Kenny Stills (WR – MIA)
- Boston Nick – Philadelphia DST
- Matt – Minnesota DST
- Nick Ru – Mike Williams (WR – LAC)
- Chicago Eric – Josh Doctson (WR – WAS)
- CEO Joe – Denver DST
- Jay Roget – Rams DST
Well that escalated quickly. Four defenses come off the board here after Vinny started the insanity last round. We’re also almost getting into ‘dart throw’ territory here, so upside picks only, which we have in Kenny Stills and Mike Williams. I’m a little surprised that Barber was still available here since he should be busy in Tampa with Ronald Jones disappointing and Doug Martin gone, so I couldn’t help myself. I appreciate Boston Nick putting bias aside and grabbing the Eagles D.
Best Pick: Gonna pat myself on the back here on Barber since getting a starting RB in the 11th almost never happens. I like the Crowder pick too, since he should be targeted heavily.
Worst Pick: Any defense this early
- Jay Roget – Carson Wentz (QB – PHI)
- CEO Joe – Stephen Gostkowski (K – NE)
- Chicago Eric – Pittsburgh DST
- Nick Ru – Jordy Nelson (WR – OAK)
- Matt – Jimmy Garoppolo (QB – SF)
- Boston Nick – Rashaad Penny (RB – SEA)
- Murt – Kerryon Johnson (RB – DET)
- KMess – Texans DST
- Vinny – John Brown (WR – BAL)
- Bake – Aaron Jones (RB – GB)
Full disclosure, I had John Brown queued up here and was shocked when Vinny grabbed him one pick before me. I didn’t even think anyone would notice he was on the board. So instead, I locked up the Green Bay backfield with Aaron Jones. I’m basically considering “Packers RB” one position and will use whichever one is starting as a strong RB2.
Best Pick: Even if he misses a few games, getting Wentz in the 12th is larceny.
Worst Pick: Gostkowski, bc he’s a kicker. A good one, but still a kicker. It’s not the last round yet.
- Bake – Sterling Shepard (WR – NYG)
- Vinny – Dallas “Philly” Goedert (TE – PHI)
- KMess – Ben Roethlisberger (QB – PIT)
- Murt – Matt Ryan (QB – ATL)
- Boston Nick – Rishard Matthews (WR – TEN)
- Matt – Kelvin Benjamin (WR – BUF)
- Nick Ru – Austin Hooper (TE – ATL)
- Chicago Eric – Benjamin Watson (TE – NO)
- CEO Joe – Bilal Powell (RB – NYJ)
- Jay Roget – Allen Hurns (WR – DAL)
We’ve entered backup TE and QB territory here. I should have really grabbed one of these QBs by now as an insurance policy for Andrew Luck, but one of the benefits of a 10 team league is the waiver wire is ripe, so I can always grab one later. I don’t particularly know why I went with Sterling Shepard here besides the fact that I needed some WR depth. But I have basically no opinion on the guy. Meh.
Best Pick: Hurns could turn out to be a huge bargain if he holds the top spot on the Dallas depth chart. This pick probably hurt KMess a little bit.
Worst Pick: Benjamin Watson is approximately 58 years old.
- Jay Roget – Giovani Bernard (RB – CIN)
- CEO Joe – Martavis Bryant (WR – OAK)
- Chicago Eric – Jake Elliot (K – PHI)
- Nick Ru – Adam Vinatieri (K – IND)
- Matt – Greg Zuerlein (K – LAR)
- Boston Nick – Jared Goff (QB – LAR)
- Murt – Chargers DST
- KMess – Dez Bryant (WR – ?)
- Vinny – Derek Carr (QB – OAK)
- Bake – Ravens DST
I like the foresight of Kev grabbing Dez here. He’s gonna play somewhere this year, just have to find out where. At this price it doesn’t even matter where, this is bargain basement stuff with the potential to pay off big time.
Best Pick: The Chargers defense is stacked this year. They might be on par with Jacksonville last year, so Murt may never have to grab another defense on waivers, except for the bye of course.
Worst Pick: It’s hard to really make a bad pick at this point. None.
- Bake – Justin Tucker (K – BAL)
- Vinny – Sebastian Janikowski (K – SEA)
- KMess – Matt Bryant (K – ATL)
- Murt – Will Lutz (K – NO)
- Boston Nick – Chris Boswell (K – PIT)
- Matt – Jack Doyle (TE – IND)
- Nick Ru – Patriots DST
- Chicago Eric – Nick Chubb (RB – CLE)
- CEO Joe – Tre’Quan Smith (No one knows)
- Jay Roget – Graham Gano (K – CAR)
Two things surprised me in this round: 1) Janikowski is still in the NFL?? and 2) Who the hell is Tre’Quan Smith? I gotta assume CEO Joe read some sort of super deep sleeper article or watched this guy play in college or something because I’ve never heard his name before. No best or worst picks this round (except for maybe Tre’Quan Smith).
There you have it guys. Yahoo said that CEO Joe won the draft. Must have been that Tre’Quan Smith pick. Winning the draft and winning the league are two completely different things, however. Stay tuned for updates on the Branded Fantasy League and the embarrassing shit the last place team is going to have to do.