The RotoUnderworld community will be partaking in a series of 12-team, five-round rookie mock drafts, running through the summer. The mock drafters will be comprised of writers and analysts from both PlayerProfiler and The Breakout Finder, as well as our friends in the Patreon community. While these pieces will include quick-hitting notes from the drafters about why they made their selection, our writers will take turns recapping the festivities and adding their own unique perspectives.
With big shoes to fill after Ray Ray’s masterpiece from the single quarterback mock that can be found here. I would like to welcome you to yet another extension of MOCK DRAFT SZN. Unlike Ray Ray, I do not possess any ground breaking secrets or sneak peeks into the Rotounderworld crystal ball. What I do have is another mock draft sizzling fresh off the grill ready and prepared to be ingested.
It would behoove me to introduce our wonderful mock drafters featuring Underworld supporters such as; Nick Tabbs, The MIGHTY Rooster himself, Edward DeLauter, The Peoples Champion Ray Ray, THE SALARY CAP-TAIN, Corbin and Myself. There ends the extent of my Twitter ‘search’ query abilities.
The mock draft took no time to create noticeable ADP disruptions specifically in the Running Back department. The most noticeable of the round being Trey Sermon drafted at 1.09 in front of some top names of this class. Based on the Rotounderworld ADP tracker this mirrored the soonest Sermon has been taken in a draft. Which in turn gave a wonderfully wrapped gift of Javonte Williams at the 1.11.
The enjoyable chaos didn’t stop there, Travis Etienne was taken at 1.06 by our very own Ray Ray. A pick that wouldn’t be noticeable upon ADP until you saw who he passed on to take his guy.
Ja’Marr Chase fell right into my lap at 1.07, which is three picks later than he had been selected based on his Max ADP. In fact, Kyle Pitts also joined the club of ‘falling’ in the draft by being selected three picks after his ADP. Creating the ‘group of 3’ three players all falling three slots after their ADP; Chase, Pitts, and Williams take the honor in this mock draft. The FF_Litigator himself secured the throne for the Round 1 biggest reach, taking Zach Wilson four picks ahead of his ADP. Though, I am not sure many will be casting stones at that pick given the settings and his immediate path to playing time. A first round that would leave a chalkboard yearning for more chalk.
The first six picks of this draft might as well have been copy and pasted straight from the ADP as the biggest variance in ADP were Elijah Moore falling two picks and Terrace Marshall being taken two picks before. After I was able to secure Rondale Moore from what seems to be the last player from the established rookie pool, the fun began. Ray Ray got the pick of the discount wide receivers, taking Amari Rodgers, a player boasting the highest remaining BreakoutFinder rating of 27.1, in the second round. The biggest reach of ‘Round 2’ is a shared title with Nick and Joshua reaching four picks ahead of ADP for Nico Collins and Kellen Mond; perhaps some gamesmanship at hand. Although, one must ponder what constitutes a reach given the point of the draft we have reached.
The biggest take away here is that from a lifetime value standpoint the disparity is massive from the first half of this round to the second half of this round. In fact when you use the Trade Analyzer by Player Profiler to give a compilation of lifetime value points the difference between 2.01-2.06 and 2.07-2.12 is 248.47 Lifetime Value points. Even more of a reason to ensure you do your best to compile as many picks as you can within the first 18 picks of this rookie draft.
The beginning of the third would have made the old school bookies proud with how much chalk was used.
The excitement of this round started when Hunter Long was taken as the second tight end off the board. Long was taken pick 3.04, which is 12 picks ahead of his ADP. The biggest question however, why Long over the Penn St. tight end Pat Freiermuth (you can find my article I wrote about him here on BreakoutFinder). Long was selected in the third round by the Miami Dolphins, which some analysts have theorized may be a replacement pick for Mike Gesicki, who is on his contract year this season. Long has another advantage over Freiermuth, he is tied to Tua Tagovailoa instead of Ben Roethlisberger. This pick may very well have come down to which tight end prototype was preferred, Long is much more of a split tight end while Freiermuth is a traditional inline blocking tight end.
The other notable selection in this round is Anthony Schwartz, selected at pick 3.08 and 28 picks before his ADP.
Selected as the 15th wide receiver overall, Schwartz suffered from the same program pitfalls his teammate Seth Williams has. Schwartz boasting a 29.8 BreakoutFinder rating and third round draft capital has often been forgotten during this rookie cycle. He has already been noted by beat reporters to be a special teams contributor during the season. Which not only ensures his spot on the final roster but allows him to keep fighting up the depth chart in the wide receiver room for Cleveland. He is also the fastest on the team by nearly 0.16 tenths of a second, which should open up opportunities to get offensive snaps. At this point in the draft, he is an ideal upside pick candidate. Round 3 finished off with Corbin thanking his lucky rabbits foot as Kyle Trask fell 5 spots and right into his lap.
As the draft rolls into the flag planting and cool name sounding pick area, I figured it would be fun to discuss the allure of these picks.
Ihmir Smith-Marsette has been a hot name, especially if you have tuned into the Podfather’s recent podcasts in which he lays out the case for why Smith-Marsette is worthy of a draft selection. Davis Mills was a bit of a difficult study for his college profile due to starting two years, one of which was the Covid-19 year. However, most figure he is going to be taking snaps under center sometime this year, especially if the Texans choose to go ‘galaxy brain’ and start mills to ensure a Top-3 NFL draft pick. Kylin Hill could very easily be forced into the lineup as a pass-catching running back, but if he gets an opportunity, he has the size and profile to potentially shoulder a workhorse role.
Javians Hawkins is my favorite pick here. He has the potential to be ushered into a large opportunity share among his Atlanta Falcons counterparts. Mike Davis is beyond the age apex and was inefficient as a runner last year. The only other competition is Qadree Ollison who has had 23 total rushing attempts in his two career years.
A surprise next was Kylen Granson, a player who was hand picked by Frank Reich and is already being billed for a third of the snaps as a rookie. Granson comes with the size and speed you want for a tight end as well as a solid college profile. Gerrid Doaks, a seventh round pick by the Dolphins, many players hope he can continue the trend of Dolphins late round running backs. A player with the size and a 87th-percentile Burst Score, Doaks looks to carve out a role early on as the goal line back for the Dolphins.
Jermar Jefferson, a rookie, many had high hopes for but ultimately disappointed at his pro day and accompanied late Day 3 draft capital. Jefferson hopes to step into the Jamaal Williams role if he were to go down and see a moderate percentage of the rushing share for the Lions. Duke product Noah Gray is already getting some camp buzz by beat reporters saying the Chiefs will be running two tight end sets, helping him see playing time early in his career. A round full of high hopes, but historically leaves many heading home with a frown on their face.
Unlike Round 4, Round 5 is more a mix of projected fantasies instead of ceiling plays involving reasonable analysis. I wanted to pick out my favorite picks here in the fifth round. Jaret Patterson is one running back away from getting meaningful snaps with the Washington Football Team. If Peyton Barber or Antonio Gibson fall to injury, Patterson figures to be next in line to receive a potentially sizable workload. Demetric Felton figures to see little involvement this year, however if opportunity presents itself, Felton would fill the pass catching role very well.
Khalil Herbert is another back up running back who has the profile that suggests he could handle the lead back role if David Montgomery were to miss games. The last pick I thought was a very good one was Chris Evans, the Michigan product taken in the sixth round to come in and battle for the primary backup role behind Joe Mixon. Evans boasted size, a 94th-percentile Burst Score, a 92nd-percentile Agility Score, and a 85th-percentile SPARQ-x score.
A lot of strategies were presented for this mock draft, though few were as unique as Joshua Benjamin’s double quarterback, double tight end strategy. One that may very well pay off (especially for the point per block tight end premium scoring formats). While the most evenly constructed team would fall upon Nick Tabs, securing a top tier quarterback and building around high upside rookies. When it comes to positional scarcity we all know running back reigns supreme, though longevity sides with the wide receiver. Ray Ray, Salary Cap-tain, Franchise No.12 and myself come away with the strongest wide receiving core from the draft. While Joshua may have had the most unique strategy, leaving the draft with possibly two starting NFL quarterbacks is a strategy bound to lead to titles in the future.
Time will tell if the shoes fit well enough to appease the executives and perhaps grant me a return once again to grace your internal voice.