No. 1 overall | No. 2 | No. 3 | No. 4 | No. 5 | No. 6 | No. 7
No. 8 | No. 9 | No. 10 | No. 11 | No. 12
No. 8 | No. 9 | No. 10 | No. 11 | No. 12
If you had the chance to choose your draft spot, what pick would you select in the first round? What position do you feel gives you the best advantage in building your team?
There are a variety of ways to craft your team, and we're here to help. Some of you already know your draft slot, but others of you won't find out until just before the draft.
What my colleague Dave Richard and yours truly are doing here in this 12-part series is outlining a strategy for you to use with each pick. We are looking at all 12 picks individually in a 14-round draft and giving you an idea of what positions to target in each round.
We'll highlight some players who should be available with each pick, and hopefully this is a guide you can use on Draft Day in standard and PPR formats with a lineup of QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, TE, FLEX (RB/WR/TE), K, DST and five reserve spots. Every draft is different, so don't expect to follow this plan exactly. But if you have an idea of what you want to do with each round you should be able to put together a solid squad.
We'll start with the first pick, which we're discussing here, and your choice is easy with Peterson. But what you do after Round 1 will likely decide your fate.
We'll go over all 14 picks for the No. 1 overall selection, and then you can check out the entire draft with this series in the coming weeks.
Editor's note: The percentages listed are what position you should target based on that round for each pick.
|Round 1 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||100%||WR||0%||TE||0%|
|Round 1 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||100%||WR||0%||TE||0%|
It would be a shock to see anyone draft another player other than Peterson after the way he played last season. He ran for 2,097 yards and 12 touchdowns and caught 40 passes for 217 yards and a touchdown, and he has the chance to post stellar stats again this year. Now, the other six 2,000-yard rushers in NFL history -- O.J. Simpson, Eric Dickerson, Barry Sanders, Terrell Davis, Jamal Lewis and Chris Johnson -- saw a decline in production the following year, but Peterson isn't expected to drop off enough to hurt his potential as the No. 1 overall pick.
|Round 2 - Standard||QB||15%||RB||40%||WR||40%||TE||5%|
|Round 2 - PPR||QB||15%||RB||30%||WR||50%||TE||5%|
There are a lot of directions you can go in Round 2. If an elite quarterback is there like Drew Brees or Aaron Rodgers you can pull the trigger on the likely No. 1 overall scorer in your league, but quarterback is deep and we would wait. Taking Rob Gronkowski is also a possibility (Jimmy Graham should be gone), but there's too much risk involved (at least at this point) with his back injury. Our suggestion is best player available with the goal to get at least one running back at this swing pick. A receiver is a must in PPR, and Randall Cobb and his potential for 100 catches is the easy pick. We'll also take a receiver in the standard league and go with Larry Fitzgerald, who should rebound at a high level with the addition of coach Bruce Arians and quarterback Carson Palmer.
Players you can get here (standard): Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Maurice Jones-Drew, Lamar Miller, Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Johnson, Rob Gronkowski
Players you can get here (PPR): Stevan Ridley, Randall Cobb, Roddy White
My selection at No. 24 standard: Larry Fitzgerald
My selection at No. 24 PPR: Randall Cobb
|Round 3 - Standard||QB||15%||RB||50%||WR||30%||TE||5%|
|Round 3 - PPR||QB||15%||RB||45%||WR||35%||TE||5%|
As we said in Round 2, you want at least one running back with these two picks, and Maurice Jones-Drew is worth the gamble here. There's a big concern with Jones-Drew based on his comeback from last year's Lisfranc injury, but so far all signs have been positive in training camp. Stevan Ridley won't make it this far in standard leagues, but his lack of receptions (six in 2012, nine in two years) lowers his value in PPR. But he had over 1,200 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns last season, and he should again be a dominant force. If he falls to this spot as expected then pair him with Peterson and be excited about the start of your team.
Players you can get here (standard): Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Maurice Jones-Drew, Lamar Miller, Andre Johnson, Rob Gronkowski
Players you can get here (PPR): Stevan Ridley, Roddy White
My selection at No. 25 standard: Maurice Jones-Drew
My selection at No. 25 PPR: Stevan Ridley
|Round 4 - Standard||QB||20%||RB||35%||WR||35%||TE||10%|
|Round 4 - PPR||QB||20%||RB||35%||WR||35%||TE||10%|
The reason we said to wait on a quarterback is you should be able to draft one after the first couple of rounds who can still be a Top 5 finisher. And Matt Ryan, Tom Brady and Matthew Stafford have the potential to fall to this spot (Brady's Average Draft Position is No. 38, Ryan is No. 42 and Stafford is No. 50). Dave and I practice what we preach, so quarterbacks will go later in our drafts, and Ryan is the pick here in standard leagues. In PPR, we want another receiver to pair with Cobb, and Pierre Garcon is a Top 15 option on my draft board. When healthy, he was dominant in 2012, and he is reportedly having an outstanding training camp.
Players you can get here (standard): Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, Shane Vereen, Giovani Bernard, Rashard Mendenhall
Players you can get here (PPR): Cam Newton, Montee Ball, Eddie Lacy, Pierre Garcon, Eric Decker
My selection at No. 48 standard: Matt Ryan
My selection at No. 48 PPR: Pierre Garcon
|Round 5 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||40%||TE||20%|
|Round 5 - PPR||QB||20%||RB||30%||WR||30%||TE||20%|
Running back depth is a priority this season, and if you can get three running backs in the first five rounds you should be in good shape. Two running backs I'm extremely fond of this year are Shane Vereen and Giovani Bernard, and in each draft you should have one available here -- if not both. Vereen has the chance to help the Patriots replace departed players like Danny Woodhead and
Players you can get here (standard): Shane Vereen, Giovani Bernard, Rashard Mendenhall
Players you can get here (PPR): Cam Newton, Montee Ball, Eddie Lacy, Eric Decker
My selection at No. 49 standard: Shane Vereen
My selection at No. 49 PPR: Giovani Bernard
|Round 6 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||25%||WR||45%||TE||30%|
|Round 6 - PPR||QB||20%||RB||20%||WR||30%||TE||30%|
I don't recommend drafting a quarterback and tight end together in the first five rounds, but we're in the clear now at this point. Jason Witten is better in PPR than standard formats based on his lack of touchdowns -- he had three touchdowns last season and five or less in four of the past five years -- but he still has over 1,000 receiving yards in three of the past four seasons. You have now locked up a Top 5 quarterback, three running backs, including the No. 1 overall pick, one stud receiver and a Top 5 tight end. That's pretty legit. In the PPR league you'd love a tight end who should see a high volume of targets, and Tony Gonzalez was No. 3 in targets among tight ends last season. Even at 37 he should remain a force.
Players you can get here (standard): Ronnie Hillman, Pierre Thomas, Torrey Smith, Tavon Austin, Jordy Nelson, Jason Witten
Players you can get here (PPR): Tony Romo, Andrew Luck, Ben Tate, Bryce Brown, Kenny Britt, Tony Gonzalez
My selection at No. 72 standard: Jason Witten
My selection at No. 72 PPR: Tony Gonzalez
|Round 7 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||30%||WR||70%||TE||0%|
|Round 7 - PPR||QB||40%||RB||30%||WR||30%||TE||0%|
Based on how your draft is going to this point you need a second receiver in the standard league. The elite options are likely gone by now, and you want someone with upside. Torrey Smith fits that description. He's entering his third season, which is typically the year receivers have a breakout campaign, and the Ravens need him to step up with Anquan Boldin gone and Dennis Pitta (hip) out. The good thing on waiting for receivers this year is you can add quality depth late compared to running backs, so this is a good strategy. We'll take a quarterback in the PPR league here, and I like Tony Romo over Andrew Luck, Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson. He might turn out to be among the best value picks at any position this season.
Players you can get here (standard): Ronnie Hillman, Pierre Thomas, Torrey Smith, Tavon Austin, Jordy Nelson
Players you can get here (PPR): Tony Romo, Andrew Luck, Ben Tate, Bryce Brown, Kenny Britt
My selection at No. 73 standard: Torrey Smith
My selection at No. 73 PPR: Tony Romo
|Round 8 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||60%||TE||0%|
|Round 8 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||60%||TE||0%|
This is the point in the draft where you're going to be excited and amazed at the receiver depth available to you. It's the reason we tell you to load up on running backs early and wait for receivers. In the standard league, we'll stick with looking for a high-upside No. 3 receiver, and Josh Gordon is a great addition. He is suspended for the first two games, but he's going to be the focal point of a downfield passing attack that should highlight his skills. In the PPR league, we'll grab one of the most underrated receivers in Fantasy -- Lance Moore. He was a Top 20 receiver last season, and he should continue to be heavily involved as a top target for Drew Brees (he had 104 targets in 2012).
Players you can get here (standard): Johnathan Franklin, Jonathan Stewart, Fred Jackson, Josh Gordon, Mike Wallace
Players you can get here (PPR): Zac Stacy, Bilal Powell, Lance Moore, Ryan Broyles, Michael Floyd
My selection at No. 96 standard: Josh Gordon
My selection at No. 96 PPR: Lance Moore
|Round 9 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||50%||WR||50%||TE||0%|
|Round 9 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||50%||WR||50%||TE||0%|
You're going to find, unfortunately, that the running back depth will dry up quickly, and you'll be reaching for players you might not have expected. We always recommend at least four running backs in a 14-round draft (five are preferable), so we'll take the likely No. 2 running back for the Packers in Johnathan Franklin. Eddie Lacy is expected to start, but Franklin should play a prominent role. He's a quality reserve given the options on the table. In the PPR league, we'll take one of our favorite sleepers in Ryan Broyles. I'd have no problem using Moore or Broyles as a flex option in this format, especially since Broyles could be a force as the slot receiver for the pass-happy Lions.
Players you can get here (standard): Johnathan Franklin, Jonathan Stewart, Mike Wallace
Players you can get here (PPR): Zac Stacy, Bilal Powell, Fred Jackson, Ryan Broyles, Michael Floyd
My selection at No. 97 standard: Johnathan Franklin
My selection at No. 97 PPR: Ryan Broyles
|Round 10 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||50%||WR||50%||TE||0%|
|Round 10 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||50%||WR||50%||TE||0%|
If you've already drafted your quarterback and tight end at this point and like the depth you have at running back and receiver the goal now is to take potential sleepers, fallback options who could help you in a pinch or handcuff running backs. In the PPR league we'll grab our fourth running back in Shonn Greene. While he's not expected to be a factor in the passing game and gets a significant downgrade in value going from the starter for the Jets to the backup for the Titans, he could still score a healthy amount of touchdowns. And if Johnson goes down then Greene could thrive. In the standard league, Alshon Jeffery could have a solid sophomore campaign for coach Marc Trestman. He's a great No. 4 receiver behind Fitzgerald, Smith and Gordon.
Players you can get here (standard): Alshon Jeffery, Justin Blackmon, Aaron Dobson, Denarius Moore, Seahawks DST
Players you can get here (PPR): Shonn Greene, LaMichael James, Knile Davis, Rueben Randle, Vincent Brown
My selection at No. 120 standard: Alshon Jeffery
My selection at No. 120 PPR: Shonn Greene
|Round 11 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||40%||TE||0%||DST||20%|
|Round 11 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||40%||TE||0%||DST||20%|
Every owner has a different philosophy on drafting a DST and when to do it. My advice is to do it when you feel comfortable, but wait until at least Round 10 if possible. With the way the standard league team has been built, this is a good time to pull the trigger on the No. 1 DST in the Seahawks. There's no need to draft a No. 2 quarterback for someone like Ryan, and the running back depth is terrible at this point. Since we already have four receivers, grabbing the Seahawks makes sense. In the PPR league we'll grab a running back with upside in LaMichael James. He might not see much action early on, but he could emerge as a receiving threat for the 49ers behind Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter.
Players you can get here (standard): Justin Blackmon, Aaron Dobson, Denarius Moore, Seahawks DST
Players you can get here (PPR): LaMichael James, Knile Davis, Rueben Randle, Vincent Brown
My selection at No. 121 standard: Seahawks DST
My selection at No. 121 PPR: LaMichael James
|Round 12 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||50%||WR||50%||TE||0%||DST||0%|
|Round 12 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||40%||WR||40%||TE||0%||DST||20%|
You're just looking for value here in the standard league, and Kendall Wright showed promise as a rookie for the Titans last year with 64 catches for 626 yards and four touchdowns. The Titans have some quality weapons with Johnson, Kenny Britt and Wright, but the key to their success will be Jake Locker. We hope he can make Wright successful enough that he's a spot starter or trade bait. In the PPR league, we'll handcuff Peterson with Toby Gerhart.
Players you can get here (standard): Marcel Reece, Denard Robinson, Kendall Wright, Brandon LaFell
Players you can get here (PPR): Toby Gerhart, Mikel Leshoure, Brian Hartline, Texans DST, Broncos DST
My selection at No. 144 standard: Kendall Wright
My selection at No. 144 PPR: Toby Gerhart
|Round 13 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||80%||WR||0%||TE||0%||DST||0%||K||20%|
|Round 13 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||0%||WR||0%||TE||0%||DST||80%||K||20%|
You shouldn't take a kicker until your last pick the majority of the time, so this round is typically when you'll target either a DST or a value pick with upside. We already went with a DST in Round 11 in the standard league and just drafted our No. 5 receiver in Round 12. It's a good idea to handcuff your top running back if possible, and Gerhart is the pick here to back up Peterson. Gerhart won't play as well as Peterson if he gets hurt, but in 2011 when Peterson was injured he had either 100 total yards or a touchdown in five of his final six games. The Texans DST is the pick in the PPR league to cover that spot, and they should be a solid unit again in 2013.
Players you can get here (standard): Toby Gerhart, Marcel Reece, Denard Robinson, Brandon LaFell
Players you can get here (PPR): Texans DST, Broncos DST, Packers DST
My selection at No. 145 standard: Toby Gerhart
My selection at No. 145 PPR: Texans DST
|Round 14 - Standard||QB||0%||RB||0%||WR||0%||TE||0%||DST||0%||K||100%|
|Round 14 - PPR||QB||0%||RB||0%||WR||0%||TE||0%||DST||0%||K||100%|
Plain and simple, take the kicker you like the best. You should look for a late bye week to avoid making a wasted transaction early, and you want someone who plays in a favorable environment if possible. I seem to end up with Dan Bailey a lot, and he fits my criteria with a bye in Week 11 on a good offensive team indoors. But you should be fine with anyone from the group listed below.
|QB||Matt Ryan||QB||Tony Romo|
|RB||Adrian Peterson||RB||Adrian Peterson|
|RB||Maurice Jones-Drew||RB||Stevan Ridley|
|WR||Larry Fitzgerald||WR||Randall Cobb|
|WR||Torrey Smith||WR||Pierre Garcon|
|FLEX||Shane Vereen||FLEX||Giovani Bernard|
|TE||Jason Witten||TE||Tony Gonzalez|
|K||Dan Bailey||K||Dan Bailey|
|BENCH||Josh Gordon||BENCH||Lance Moore|
|BENCH||Johnathan Franklin||BENCH||Ryan Broyles|
|BENCH||Alshon Jeffery||BENCH||Shonn Greene|
|BENCH||Kendall Wright||BENCH||LaMichael James|
|BENCH||Toby Gerhart||BENCH||Toby Gerhart|