By Matthew Walters
Everybody take a deep breath.
The 2020 fantasy football season is over. We survived it. We made it through. We persevered. There were some highs, and there were lots of lows. At the end of the day, hopefully we had some fun. Now it is time to move on to the 2021 draft and the 2021 fantasy football season because with dynasty football, the party never stops!
I hope you have been following along with my dynasty perspective series as I have gone through and broken down position by position the “safest” bets in dynasty football. If you have been reading, or if you are just now coming to the series, the gist of it is to see how startup and rookie draft ADP affects the value of a player over the next three years.
While there are tons of factors, and it is not an end all be all, this analysis has shone some light over the optimal players to target in your leagues. It is one of the reasons that I was saying to target David Montgomery before the season. Whether or not you believe in him going forward, he was the RB 6 on the year.
Let’s start with the #1 thing I believe is fundamental for the best dynasty teams, regardless of format. This would be a top 6 QB in startup ADP. This is the only position that steadily holds their value and remains in the top 12 of their position over a three year span. They hover in the 62-66% range of their chance at finishing as a top 12 QB during this time frame.
Funny enough, the rookie QBs everybody loves only have about a 30% chance by their second and third year to be a top 12 QB.
If you miss out on a top QB, do not fret. QBs 7-18 basically all have the same chance of being top 12 over the next 3 years. With the love for superflex taking off, I personally like to have at least one top 6 QB and then take my shots on the QBs 10-18.
After the QBs, it becomes quite convoluted on what position you should be targeting. Going by startup ADP, top 12 WRs hold the best value over a 3 year span at being in the top 24 at their position. They have a solid 72% hit rate at being a top 24 player at their position their first year out and still have a solid 50% chance in that 3rd year out.
RB dropoff goes from 72% in that first year to 45% by year 3.
TE dropoff is the steepest. That position has a 71% chance for a top 6 ADP TE to finish in the top 12 that first year before plummeting to 30% by year 3.
However, there is one and only one segment that improves every year from year one to year three, and this would be the rookie draft’s first round ADP running backs. Even better, if it can be a top 6 overall rookie ADP running back, these top 6 picks improve year over year from 40% at being top 24 in year one to 68% at being top 24 by year three.
Now I know what you are saying. “Well duh! These are guys like Jonathan Taylor, CEH, freakin’ Saquon!”
Yes, you would be correct.
This is also guys like Ronald Jones, David Montgomery, and Josh Jacobs. Now to be fair, this does include players like Royce Freeman and Kerryon Johnson as well. I’m not just saying to go grab any of these running backs and it’ll work out, but they do tend to improve year over year.
Give your young studs some time to develop. Especially coming off a COVID ridden year in which the young guys may not have been given the reins early or may have struggled to adjust to the NFL.
As stated before, these are the key building blocks I believe the best dynasty teams are built around. There are plenty of other takeaways from my series like how young receivers just typically do not make it into the top of their position. This is just one reason why Justin Jefferson has been so amazing this year.
Each individual position breakdown also includes graphs that help illustrate the points being made. Please take some time to go review those articles as I believe they will help you prep for your upcoming rookie drafts. Everybody loves the rookie drafts, but it is important to remember that more often than not, these rookie picks do not work out. Use the resources that you trust to help you make the best educated guess at which prospects will work out in the NFL.
In the end, that’s all a rookie draft is; an educated guess.
Need to get caught up? Be sure to take a look at my previous Dynasty Perspective studies (links below).
Dynasty Analyst and Writer
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