2011 Fantasy Football: 8 Players Who Will Outperform their Average Draft Position

Aug 11 3:05am

When you sit down at your computer or in your uncle’s basement for your 2011 Fantasy Football draft, you will want to go into it with some kind of idea where players are being drafted and average draft position is our best chance to know that going in. There are plenty of ADP sites out there, such as Fantasy Football Calculator, ESPN, Yahoo, CBS, FF Toolbox, Draftmasters, MFL, and The Football Guys.

ADP has a lot of value, but it can be deceiving as well. You never know exactly who is going to “reach” for players and grab them before their ADP and you also don’t know if you might be able to wait on someone and grab them a round after their ADP. But all in all, ADP allows you to gauge where they might go and helps you plan your draft strategy ahead of time. So let’s take a look at some guys I like at or above their ADP right at this moment. For this exercise I’ll be using The Football Guys aggregate ADP which I like the best.

Matt Forte: Currently his consensus ADP is 19th overall and 12th for running backs. He is coming into his prime unlike some of those in front of him in ADP, like Maurice Jones-Drew, Michael Turner, Frank Gore and Steven Jackson. Last season he had career highs in average yards per carry and yards per reception and now in the second season in Mad Martz’s offense he should be relied on heavily. I love that he can be had in the second round and has a great chance of putting up first round numbers.

Jahvid Best: Currently his consensus ADP is 43rd overall and 20th for running backs. This number is currently going up after the loss of Mikel Leshoure so I’m not leshoure how far it will rise, but I like Best enough that I doubt it will get higher than my expectations. Best is a dynamic runner and receiver who was slowed down last season by two turf toe attacks. The Lions have the players to be a high scoring offense and a healthy Best will have many ways to gain yardage and TDs this season. His upside is through the roof.

Mark Ingram: Currently his consensus ADP is 50th overall and 22nd for running backs. Many of us were burned by a rookie running back last season. Gouge your eyes out if you want because here comes his name, Ryan Mathews! AAAAGGH!! And we are probably having some post drafting Mathews stress disorder as we head back up to that drafting board. Yes, we learned a lesson with Mathews, but we can’t let it keep us from giving other rookie backs a try. 50th overall is around where I have Ingram, but I’m feeling better and better about him each day. Yes, the Saints have a ton of complimentary backs, but Ingram is the “bell cow” and goal line back on a high scoring offense. He’s worth the rookie risk in the 4th/5th round.

Mike Wallace: Currently his consensus ADP is 25th overall and 8th for wide receivers. I love me some Mike Wallace. I mean for real. I’m not playing in the slightest! Last season we saw him have a huge second half and there is no reason to think he won’t pick up from where he left off. His upside is top 3 in non-ppr leagues and getting him in the 2nd/3rd round is a steal.

Vincent Jackson: Currently his consensus ADP is 28th overall and 9th for wide receivers. I did just write about VJax in the guys I will be drafting whether you like it or not post, but his ADP in the third for non-PPR seems absurd. Third and absurd rhyme as well, so I have that going for me. There is nothing to not like about Jackson this season and another little added benefit is that he’s playing for the cash monies and me thinks just maybe he likes money.

Mario Manningham: Currently his consensus ADP is 76th overall and 28th for wide receivers. When looking at these mid-round wide receivers and their ADP it was difficult to find one I didn’t like at least a little bit. Being able to grab receivers like Manningham, Percy Harvin, Stevie Johnson, Austin Collie, and Mike Thomas from late in the 5th to early in the 8th makes it much easier to take risks on running backs early in the draft. So, yeah, I like those guys, but Manningham is high on my list of value targets this season. He has no competition for targets besides the elite Hakeem Nicks who will need double coverage. I see bright things in Mario’s future.

Tony Romo: Currently his consensus ADP is 48th overall and 7th for quarterbacks. Is Romo an elite QB? No, I’m not going to say that. But I think as fans we get too wrapped up in the Manning/Brady debate and forget who the real fantasy QBs are.  Romo is a fantasy QB. He was a top 5 fantasy QB in ’07 and ’09 and was hurt last season in what looked like another top 5 finish. Does Romo not being able to win the big game give your team less points? Don’t think too long. And now he has one of the most talented receivers in the league in Dez Bryant, a top 10 receiver in Miles Austin, A top 5 TE in Jason Witten, and a good receiving back in Felix Jones. I’m taking Romo in the 4th round every single time.

Jermichael Finley: Currently his consensus ADP is 52nd overall and 4th for tight ends. He’s my #1 tight end this season and even though I have been taking Owen Daniels who is going 75th overall in ADP, if I could get Finley that late I would be all over that and twice on Sundays. Finley is the second best receiver on the Packers and arguably the best and will see similar targets as Greg Jennings. He’s the #1/2 receiver on a team with Aaron Rodgers as the QB. Take him and run.

Besides, Chet has written for the N.Y. Times: Fifth Down Blog, and his own sites Razzball and Third Coast Sports. He is extremely/obsessively active on Twitter and will answer your questions as best he can if you throw them @ChetRazzball.

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