Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Injury Report
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Prize Leagues
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Injury Report
Probable Pitchers
Fantasy Games
Prize Leagues
Player News
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Player News
Injury Report
Mock Drafts
Fantasy Games
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Injury Report
Mock Drafts
Fantasy Games
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found

2014 Draft Prep: Picking No. 4 overall

Senior Fantasy Writer

Pick No. 1 | Pick No. 2 | Pick No. 3 | Pick No. 5 | Pick No. 6 | Pick No. 7
Pick No. 8 | Pick No. 9 | Pick No. 10 | Pick No. 11 | Pick No. 12

There aren't many guarantees in Fantasy Football, but this year if you're picking fourth overall you're guaranteed to get a running back with great expectations. There might be more than four running backs expected to do a lot of heavy lifting for their teams but the four best ones -- Jamaal Charles, Matt Forte, LeSean McCoy and Adrian Peterson -- are consensus picks.

Not only are you guaranteed one of those guys, but you're also guaranteed to get a player in Round 2 that is either a Top 3 quarterback, a Top 13 running back, a Top 7 receiver or Jimmy Graham. Do the math! That's 24 players and you'll pick 21st in Round 2 (17th if it's a 10-team league). You're in the perfect spot to grab a stud receiver that you'll never pull from lineups.

And best of all, you'll pick that player before the owners who also took an elite running back in Round 1 get to take a player in Round 2.

The guarantees continue in Round 3 when you pick another Top 30 player. Remind me how this is worse than picking 12th? Three players in the Top 30 including a Top 4 running back are at your fingertips. Fourth overall is the best spot to draft at this summer.

Here's our guide for your entire 12-team, 14-round draft.

Editor's note: The percentages listed are what position you should target based on that round for each pick.

Round 1

Round 1 - Standard QB 0% RB 100% WR 0% TE 0%
Round 1 - PPR QB 0% RB 100% WR 0% TE 0%

Jamaal Charles. Matt Forte. LeSean McCoy. Adrian Peterson. You're doing it wrong if you're not taking one of these four. Calvin Johnson and Jimmy Graham are nice and the argument can be made that they're worth considering in a PPR league, but we all know how valuable big-workload running backs are. Why pass one up, even for Megatron or Jimmy? If we're talking even one pick later then maybe, but those running backs are precious. You have to take one.

Players you can get here: (Standard and PPR): Matt Forte, LeSean McCoy, Adrian Peterson
My selection at No. 4 standard: Adrian Peterson
My selection at No. 4 PPR: Adrian Peterson

Round 2

Round 2 - Standard QB 5% RB 40% WR 50% TE 5%
Round 2 - PPR QB 0% RB 40% WR 40% TE 20%

The payoff to picking fourth overall happens here. You're in a great spot to land a Top 5 receiver in a standard league and at worst a Top 12 running back/Top 10 receiver in a PPR format (receivers go earlier in PPR leagues, pushing the running back talent down). Ideally you'd like two difference-makers on your roster at the two toughest positions to fill, though going with two running backs isn't such a bad idea either. We can be flexible here because we're up again soon in Round 3 -- in a standard league I'd expect a Top 10 receiver to make it to you whereas in a PPR it would be more like a Top 20 running back. Naturally, there could be a quarterback or a tight end that looks good at this point, but sticking with a plan to get elite talent at the rare positions will pay off later.

Players you can get here (Standard): Julio Jones, Brandon Marshall, A.J. Green, Doug Martin, Drew Brees
Players you can get here (PPR): Randall Cobb, Alshon Jeffery, Marshawn Lynch, Zac Stacy
My selection at No. 21 standard: Brandon Marshall
My selection at No. 21 PPR: Randall Cobb

Round 3

Round 3 - Standard QB 10% RB 35% WR 45% TE 10%
Round 3 - PPR QB 10% RB 45% WR 35% TE 10%

Another nice perk of picking fourth is getting three players in the Top 30. Chances are this pick will be another running back or a receiver, but if Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers or Rob Gronkowski falls here, they're tough to pass up. The reality is that they'll be gone by now, not to mention it's not mandatory to take any of them if you're not inclined, so running back or receiver it is. If you have two running backs then there should be a Top 10 receiver left to grab. If you have one running back and one receiver then you can be flexible, but it makes for a safer, stronger lineup to lock up two Top 10 receivers. You'll never bench them except for bye weeks (which means you don't have to draft a bunch of backups) and should be able to find one or two serviceable running backs to platoon as your No. 2 option with your next few picks.

Players you can get here (Standard): Randall Cobb, Andre Ellington, Aaron Rodgers, Toby Gerhart, Larry Fitzgerald
Players you can get here (PPR): Reggie Bush, Alfred Morris, Larry Fitzgerald, Shane Vereen, Peyton Manning
My selection at No. 28 standard: Randall Cobb
My selection at No. 28 PPR: Reggie Bush

Round 4

Round 4 - Standard QB 5% RB 45% WR 45% TE 5%
Round 4 - PPR QB 10% RB 35% WR 45% TE 10%

We're still looking for running backs and wideouts in Round 4, with only Matthew Stafford or Julius Thomas potentially taking our attention. Stafford offers excellent value in Round 4 considering his potential (maybe even likelihood) to put up numbers like an elite quarterback. He did it last season until the very end of the year. The running back pool will get thinned out more than the receivers at this point, so that could be the direction to go in. Just don't force a running back in place of Stafford or a quality PPR-value receiver. The nice thing about picking 45th overall is that 52nd overall is just a few choices away and the same caliber of running back you're looking at here will still be there in Round 5.

Players you can get here (Standard): Keenan Allen, Cordarrelle Patterson, Shane Vereen, Matthew Stafford, Joique Bell, Ray Rice
Players you can get here (PPR): Roddy White, Michael Floyd, Wes Welker, Victor Cruz, Aaron Rodgers, Ryan Mathews
My selection at No. 45 standard: Matthew Stafford
My selection at No. 45 PPR: Roddy White

Round 5

Round 5 - Standard QB 10% RB 40% WR 35% TE 15%
Round 5 - PPR QB 10% RB 35% WR 40% TE 15%

One goal a Fantasy owner should shoot for in the early-to-middle rounds is to land a player who should find over 1,000 yards and six touchdowns. It's not wrong to expect to find someone with that kind of potential at this point. The goal for this very pick is to find a potential starter, especially if one of your first four picks included a quarterback or a tight end. If you took one of those positions it'll mean fishing for a back or a receiver, which should still offer some decent options. On the flip side, the quarterback and tight end run should kick off with your next pick and you could get a jump on it if there's someone you really want. Starting your team with three running backs and two receivers, two running backs and three receivers or two running backs, two receivers and one quarterback/tight end is totally cool.

Players you can get here (Standard): Emmanuel Sanders, Michael Floyd, Frank Gore, Wes Welker, Roddy White, Victor Cruz, Vernon Davis
Players you can get here (PPR): Kendall Wright, Ryan Mathews, Emmanuel Sanders, Trent Richardson, Chris Johnson, Julian Edelman, Vernon Davis
My selection at No. 52 standard: Frank Gore
My selection at No. 52 PPR: Emmanuel Sanders

Round 6

Round 6 - Standard QB 20% RB 30% WR 30% TE 20%
Round 6 - PPR QB 15% RB 35% WR 30% TE 20%

If you're getting comfortable with your backs and receivers then it's fine to start checking out tight ends and quarterbacks. The run on them probably started earlier in this round, so there might not be as many choices out there as you might want. Still, expect a quarterback you wouldn't mind owning being there for the taking. But do a little homework here: If the owners who pick after you in Round 6 and before you in Round 7 all have a quarterback (or a tight end) already, then it's probably unlikely that they'll take another. This means you can wait a round and pick up some added value. The decision to wait is made easier if there are two or three quarterbacks/tight ends you wouldn't mind having. Follow the philosophy laid out in Round 5 otherwise -- aim for a player with 1,000-yard, six-touchdown potential. Nothing wrong with adding depth at running back or receiver, because players in those groups are going to get thin in about two rounds.

Players you can get here (Standard): Jordan Cameron, Andrew Luck, Mike Wallace, Jeremy Maclin, Jason Witten, Steven Jackson
Players you can get here (PPR): Ben Tate, Danny Woodhead, Dennis Pitta, Stevan Ridley, DeSean Jackson, Torrey Smith
My selection at No. 69 standard: Mike Wallace
My selection at No. 69 PPR: Danny Woodhead

Round 7

Round 7 - Standard QB 20% RB 20% WR 30% TE 30%
Round 7 - PPR QB 25% RB 25% WR 30% TE 20%

This is when the sleepers will start to get attractive and rookies will start to pick up, but don't be a fool and let an amazing value get past you here. There will be quarterbacks and tight ends that slip into Round 7 and if you're in need of one, you'll feel good about your Fantasy team and life in general if you take one. Hopefully you're not looking for a reliable Fantasy running back here because if you are, you're going to be disappointed. Same thing with receiver. If you're in pre-draft planning, expect to target a passer or a tight end with this pick.

Players you can get here (Standard): Tony Romo, Terrance West, Pierre Thomas, Marques Colston, Terrance Williams
Players you can get here (PPR): Mike Wallace, Tom Brady, Matt Ryan, Terrance Williams, T.Y. Hilton, Fred Jackson
My selection at No. 76 standard: Terrance West
My selection at No. 76 PPR: Tom Brady

Round 8

Round 8 - Standard QB 20% RB 30% WR 25% TE 25%
Round 8 - PPR QB 20% RB 25% WR 30% TE 25%

It's not a great time to target running backs as everyone left will be in a part-time situation, though high-demand handcuffs will begin hitting the street. It's a little bit better for receivers as high-upside types will be in play. The back-half of our Top 12 tight ends will begin coming off the board here as well the last three or four Top 12 quarterbacks. The value is there, but the big-time sleepers will also draw attention.

Players you can get here (Standard): Jordan Reed, Danny Woodhead, Brandin Cooks, Robert Griffin III, Bernard Pierce, Jeremy Hill
Players you can get here (PPR): Devonta Freeman, Zach Ertz, Kyle Rudolph, Brandin Cooks, DeAngelo Williams, Knowshon Moreno
My selection at No. 93 standard: Brandin Cooks
My selection at No. 93 PPR: Zach Ertz

Round 9

Round 9 - Standard QB 15% RB 30% WR 30% TE 25%
Round 9 - PPR QB 15% RB 30% WR 30% TE 25%

No owner is looking for starters at this point unless it's a tight end or quarterback that's fallen into your lap (and that can happen if you played your cards right in Round 8 by noticing the needs of the owners picking after you then). So gear up for more sleepers -- players who have a shot to outperform the expectations of a typical ninth-round pick. In fact, no one you should pick in Round 9 should have modest expectations. Shoot for the moon. The exception? A handcuff you desperately need because they might not make it back to you in Round 10.

Players you can get here (Standard): Christine Michael, Zach Ertz, Stepfan Taylor, Tre Mason, Jay Cutler, Rueben Randle
Players you can get here (PPR): Jay Cutler, Rueben Randle, Khiry Robinson, Mike Evans, Dexter McCluster, Marvin Jones
My selection at No. 100 standard: Zach Ertz
My selection at No. 100 PPR: Rueben Randle

Round 10

Round 10 - Standard QB 10% RB 40% WR 30% TE 10% K 0% DST 10%
Round 10 - PPR QB 15% RB 35% WR 30% TE 10% K 0% DST 10%

What would constitute a waste of a pick in Round 10? Probably taking someone you can get in Round 12 or 13. A real no-name. So don't do that. The sleepers left at this point won't have the same appeal as the ones taken a couple of rounds sooner. If you're fortunate enough to find a running back that can provide depth and either work as a handcuff or as a sleeper (or both) then you're on the right track. There are probably some decent sleeper receivers left, albeit none with huge potential. I wouldn't rule out the Seahawks DST here either since they can make a difference in your lineup.

Players you can get here (Standard): Tavon Austin, Carlos Hyde, Hakeem Nicks, Marvin Jones, Seahawks DST
Players you can get here (PPR): Tavon Austin, Chris Ivory, James White, Jarrett Boykin, Seahawks DST
My selection at No. 117 standard: Carlos Hyde
My selection at No. 117 PPR: Chris Ivory

Round 11

Round 11 - Standard QB 10% RB 35% WR 30% TE 15% K 0% DST 10%
Round 11 - PPR QB 10% RB 30% WR 35% TE 15% K 0% DST 10%

It's important not to mail in the rest of your draft. Rounds 11 through whenever aren't exactly a grand spectacle of talent, but you can still find players with potential here -- or at the very least a Top 5 DST. If you need a handcuff, go ahead. If you want running back depth you could go that way too, but don't be afraid to pick a player regardless of position. Another home run. Now, if you can combine the home run with a running back then you'd be in business.

Players you can get here (Standard and PPR): Eric Ebron, Heath Miller, Travaris Cadet, LeGarrette Blount, Darren McFadden, 49ers DST
My selection at No. 124 standard: 49ers DST
My selection at No. 124 PPR: Eric Ebron

Round 12

Round 12 - Standard QB 10% RB 30% WR 25% TE 10% K 0% DST 25%
Round 12 - PPR QB 10% RB 25% WR 30% TE 10% K 0% DST 25%

This pick might be your last non-kicker, non-DST pick. Might want to look into a handcuff for one of your top running backs. But what if the handcuff is someone who just isn't on the Fantasy radar? Should you wait until your early Round 13 pick to take him? It's a risk worth taking only if there's a very solid DST you'd be willing to ride with for the first chunk of the season is available. In the case of Adrian Peterson, his handcuff is considered to be Jerick McKinnon. Not many owners are thinking about him, so you could probably still afford to take a Top 5 DST and then expect the rookie rusher to fall into your lap in the next round.

Players you can get here (Standard and PPR): Any non-Top 3 DST, Ben Roethlisberger, Carson Palmer, Justin Hunter, Rod Streater, any middle- to low-end running back handcuff
My selection at No. 141 standard: Anquan Boldin
My selection at No. 141 PPR: Cardinals DST

Round 13

Round 13 - Standard QB 10% RB 20% WR 15% TE 10% K 0% DST 45%
Round 13 - PPR QB 10% RB 20% WR 15% TE 10% K 0% DST 45%

Most owners will end up with the best-available DST in this spot, but if you've taken one already do not take another. Why do it? To play the matchups? Fine, you can still play the matchups while using the waiver wire and not clogging up valuable roster space with another DST. And good luck trying to trade a DST for anyone of significant value. Handcuffs and serious late-round fliers (Lance Dunbar, Robert Woods, Jordan Matthews) will be in play if you don't take a DST.

Players you can get here (Standard and PPR): Any middle- to low-end running back handcuff, any DST not ranked in the Top 5, any kicker
My selection at No. 148 standard: Jerick McKinnon
My selection at No. 148 PPR: Jerick McKinnon

Round 14

Round 14 - Standard QB 0% RB 0% WR 0% TE 0% K 100% DST 0%
Round 14 - PPR QB 0% RB 0% WR 0% TE 0% K 100% DST 0%

When you go kicker shopping, it's good to look for one that plays with a quality offense that sets up lots of field goal opportunities. Sometimes you might take a kicker that plays with an offense that's too good and it makes for extra point attempts, not field goal tries. If that ends up happening to your kicker, you can just boot him (ha ha, kicker jokes!) and find someone else on waivers.

Players you can get here (Standard and PPR): A kicker
My selection at No. 165 standard: Shayne Graham
My selection at No. 165 PPR: Dan Bailey

The two teams

Standard PPR
QB Matthew Stafford Tom Brady
RB Adrian Peterson Adrian Peterson
RB Frank Gore Reggie Bush
WR Brandon Marshall Randall Cobb
WR Randall Cobb Roddy White
FLEX Mike Wallace Emmanuel Sanders
TE Zach Ertz Zach Ertz
K Shayne Graham Dan Bailey
DST 49ers Cardinals
Reserve Terrance West Danny Woodhead
Reserve Brandin Cooks Rueben Randle
Reserve Carlos Hyde Chris Ivory
Reserve Anquan Boldin Eric Ebron
Reserve Jerick McKinnon Jerick McKinnon

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Player News
Texans DT Brandon Ivory arrested on burglary charge
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(7:27 pm ET) Texans defensive tackle Brandon Ivory was arrested Wednesday morning in Alabama and charged with first-degree burglary, according to a Tuscaloosa Police Department report obtained by

Ivory and another man were allegedly involved in a home burglary when the two entered the residence by kicking open the back door and then demanding money from the residents. The two stole money and two Ipads from the residence. Ivory and the other suspect were arrested at their apartment shortly after the incident with the stolen money and property.

Embattled Brandon Spikes pleads guilty to leaving scene of crash
by Marty Gitlin |
(1:35 pm ET) Former Patriots and Bills linebacker Brandon Spikes has pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of a recent car crash and has received a fine and year of probation, per WBZ, which is further reporting that he has lost his license and will be forced to attend a driver's safety class.

Spikes has lost far more than his license. He has lost his livelihood, having been cut by New England for hitting another car and abandoning his vehicle on the highway. He later told the police that he had hit a deer.

No other teams have been rumored to be targeting Spikes for the coming season.

Terrelle Pryor ready to embrace new role with Browns
by Marty Gitlin |
(6/30/2015) Terrelle Pryor once declared that he could not play football if he could not play quarterback.

Reality has since set in.

Pryor has been cut twice and is now playing on a Cleveland Browns team desperate for a quarterback, but apparently not desperate enough to give him a shot. He is instead embracing what he is calling a "slash-player" role.

"I'm going to give (it) a chance," he told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. "I just want to play football. I'm a playmaker, and I believe if I can touch the ball, I can go to the house, especially if I have space. This should definitely open up some opportunities."

Pryor has already taken the first step by contacting Steelers receiving stud Antonio Brown and making plans to work out with him and Randy Moss so they can teach him the nuances of the position.

He also figures there's another reason he's ahead of the game.

"The thing that helps me is that I played quarterback, and I know what the quarterback wants," Pryor said.

Lions new DT Haloti Ngata too busy to think about new contract
by Marty Gitlin |
(6/30/2015) Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata had his contract in mind in his last days with the Ravens, but he's too busy to think about it now that he's been traded to the Lions.

Ngata admitted that he suspected a deal could take place.

"The closer we got to free agency, I thought it could be a possibility," he told Monday Morning Quarterback. "It didn't surprise me ... since we weren't getting closer to any kind of contract stuff, I just figured there were a lot of things that could happen. I definitely started to have a trade in my mind as a possibility."

Ngata added that he's not thinking about a contract extension with Detroit.

"I'm just trying to get to know my teammates, get my playbook down, and my technique and terminology," he said.

Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon claims he'd pick himself in Fantasy
by Marty Gitlin |
(6/30/2015) Vikings running back Jerick McKinnon doesn't have a Fantasy football team, but if he did...

"If ... I could take myself, I would," he told the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Never mind that Adrian Peterson has returned to the backfield. Never mind that Peterson has traditionally not yielded many carries to teammates. In 2012, for instance, he totaled 348 of his team's 401 rushing attempts.

The Vikings, however, are expected to use a more balanced approach in 2015. And McKinnon, who flashed as a starter with Peterson sidelined last season, is feeling dandy after undergoing lower back surgery in December.

"Two hundred percent," he declared in regard to his health. "If there is a 300, I feel 300. It's all good."

McKinnon averaged 4.8 yards per carry a year ago, which buoyed his confidence.

Lions RB Joique Bell predicting at least a 1,200-yard season
by Marty Gitlin |
(6/30/2015) Lions featured back Joique Bell is coming off a knee injury that has sidelined him throughout the offseason and has also been dealing with an Achilles issue. But his confidence is not hurt at all.

Bell has made a rather lofty prediction for 2015, particularly for a guy that has never rushed for more than 860 yards in a season. He claims he will exceed that by plenty.

"I'm going to rush for over 1,200 yards," he told "That's the minimum. If I do less than that, I'll be surprised. I'll be disappointed. Anything more than that, I wouldn't be surprised at all."

Bell averaged a mediocre 3.9 yards per carry in both of the last two years.

Report: LB Kyle Knox gets four-game suspension from NFL
by Shawn Krest |
(6/29/2015) Free agent linebacker Kyle Knox will get a four-game suspension from the league, NFL beat writer Howard Balzer reported. 

Knox as released by New Orleans in the offseason. Dallas signed him in June and released him three days later. 

Knox has played in 16 games for New Orleans and Jacksonville over the last two seasons.

Eagles sign John Moffitt, release Cole Manhart
by Shawn Krest |
(6/29/2015) As expected, the Eagles signed center John Moffitt to a one-year contract on Monday, per

Moffitt was a third-round draft pick in 2011 and played two years for Seattle. He was traded to Denver and retired early in the 2013 season. 

He was arrested in 2014 on assault and drug charges, which were later dropped. 

To make room, the Eagles released undrafted rookie free agent Cole Manhart

Chiefs' Jeremy Maclin off to best start ever with Alex Smith
by Shawn Krest |
(6/29/2015) New Chiefs WR Jeremy Maclin has hit it off with quarterback Alex Smith during the offseason. 

Maclin came to Kansas City from Philadelphia in the offseason, and his communication with Smith has been more than either player expected. 

“I don’t think I’ve ever been off to a better start with a particular quarterback in my life,” Maclin said, per

Offensive coordinator Doug Pederson, like head coach Andy Reid, brought the Philadelphia offense to Kansas City, which has helped Maclin's transition. 

“He’s only a couple years removed from our system,” Pederson said. “We’ve changed some things since he’s been in the offense, but he’s such a smart, savvy, veteran guy that he’s picked up on what we’re doing really fast. He and Alex have sort of developed that continuity right away.”

Redskins' David Amerson looks to win back starting job
by Shawn Krest |
(6/29/2015) After a sub-par 2014 season, Redskins cornerback David Amerson is no longer expected to be a starter. Bashaud Breeland and free agent pickup Chris Culliver have knocked Amerson down to a nickelback role. 

Amerson lost the job after a season in which he indecisive and lacked aggression, he admitted to the Washington Post. Amerson didn't record an interception and had just seven pass breakups. 

“At the end of the day, that’s all it comes down to: just making plays. That’s the thing I felt like I was missing last year: being that big play-maker, game-changer,” Amerson said. “I basically had been that all my life, but it was different for me last year. It was unusual for me. So I need to get back into my groove and just find my swag. … Like I said, I’ve been that all my life, and always had that – I wouldn’t call it a gambling type of mentality – but knowing when to go and make that play, when to step up. It’s something I think a lot of people naturally have in them, and knowing when to bring it out. I just have to have that mindset.”