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Projection of Top Rookies for 2007

I

n most fantasy drafts, several rookies will be selected, most in the later rounds.
  Our league is a little different.
  Prior to the 14-round veteran player draft, we have a one-round, reverse-order of finish rookie draft.
  Since it is not a keeper league, there has been some debate among the owners about tying the rookie draft to the previous season.
  I’ve always supported the rookie draft because it helps level the playing field for teams that suffered bad luck the previous year.

 

Here is how I rated the top rookies for 2007 and when I expect them to be selected in the one-round, reverse-order of finish rookie draft.

 (Obviously things will be slightly different for rookies taken during the veteran player draft in light of the eccentricities of the owners in my league.)

 


* The number in parenthesis is last year’s regular season record.

  In the case of similar records, tiebreaking scenarios are used including head-to-head, division record and points scored

 


01) Crack Wagon (4-10) — Adrian Peterson (RB-Minn)

— Despite injury concerns and a RBBC situation, AP seems to be the consensus #1 pick.

 Wagon also has the first pick in the regular draft so it will be formidable with a backfield of LT and AP.

  Wagon could be tempted to pass on AP and take Marshawn Lynch but in the end takes the back with the most upside, especially in light of what Reggie Bush did in a RBBC situation with McAllister last season. Childress likes, make that loves, to run the ball and that means 40-plus carries a game for Peterson and Taylor.

 


02) Chief Woody (6-8) — Marshawn Lynch (RB-Buf)

— Almost every year it seems like the back taken in the #2 spot out-performs the first overall rookie pick.

  Most notably in ’99 when Ricky Williams was taken ahead of Edge James and again in ’02 when William Green went before Clinton Portis.

  Will it happen again in ’07?

  Most think that Lynch will have a monster year behind an improved Bills o-line and a rapidly improving JP Losman.

  Like the Sonics having Durant fall into its lap at #2, Woody is grateful to have Lynch in the second spot.

 


03) Dem Weevils (6-8) — Calvin Johnson (WR-Det)

– The owner of the Weevils almost always takes RBs with his first two picks in the veteran player draft so there is no need to take another one here.

  The only sure-fire rookie receiver is Johnson.

  With the evil genius Mike Martz running the Lions’ offense, look for Johnson to put up some big numbers playing along side Roy Williams and Mike Furrey.

  Matt Millen may have set the franchise back years with his picks of Charles Rogers and Mike Williams but I believe he hit the proverbial jackpot with CJ.

 


04)

America‘s Pack (6-8) — Brandon Jackson (RB-GB)
– The owner of the Pack is a Packer Fan so expect him to be a homer and take the second round pick out of

Nebraska.

  I’ve watched a lot of Big 12 games and he never really impressed me but the bottom line is, what other weapons does

Green Bay have?

 

Vernand Morency?

  Last season the Pack reached for Greg Jennings (when it could’ve taken a back in the rookie draft and

Jennings with a fourteenth round pick in the veteran player draft) so the upset would be the Pack not taking

Jackson with the fourth pick.

 


05) Da Bears! (7-7) — Chris Henry (RB-Tenn)

– Bears have a choice here between two backs that will likely begin the season as backups.

  The other Chris Henry (who will backup LenDale White and Chris Brown in

Tennessee) and Lorenzo Booker (who will backup Ronnie Brown in

Miami).

  It is a coin flip at this point but due to White’s constant battles with his weight and Brown’s inability to stay healthy, the smart choice is Henry.

  I don’t expect the Titans to have a very good year – I expect them to lose Young because of the Madden curse, Pac Man because of jail – but someone is going to score and I can see Henry having a strong second half.

 


06) The Mob (7-7) — Lorenzo Booker (RB-Mia)

— The owner of the Mob says he has a plan for the rookie draft but is playing his cards close to the vest.

  My hunch is that he hopes one of the five players listed above drops to him at #6.

  If Da Bears! pass on Henry, he would be the choice here but assuming Bears take Henry, then Mob would be wise to go with Booker.

  Cam Cameron has had success as an offensive coordinator and should improve the Fins’ offense. Also, Booker has a chip on his shoulder due to dropping in the draft.

  He’s the right pick here.

 


07) Orange Crush (7-7) —

  Anthony Gonzalez (WR-Indy) – With all of the backs gone, Crush will likely go with the second best receiver in this slot.

  With Stokley gone to the Broncos, Gonzalez is stepping into the perfect situation.

  Working the slot with Harrison and Wayne on the outside, expect Gonzalez to put up strong numbers for a rookie receiver.

  While Crush could opt for Gonzalez’ OSU teammate Ted Ginn, Jr., Ginn is not stepping into a high octane offense.

  I expect Manning to have a Super Bowl hangover but he will still be one of the top five QBs.

 


08)

Savage

Garden (7-7) — Justin Medlock (K-KC)
– The owner of the SGA has been the most active opponent of the rookie draft.

  In a move that can probably can be construed as a protest vote, he almost always takes a rookie kicker.

  It is also part strategy – taking a kicker in the rookie draft saves a draft pick in the veteran player draft for another skill position player.

  If that happens again this year, it appears that rookie Justin Medlock has the inside track of getting the Chiefs’ job, especially after KC shipped last year’s starter Tynes out of town.

 


09) Purple People Eaters (8-6) — Sidney Rice (WR-Minn)

  While he rarely goes homer like Packer Fan, taking Rice at the #9 spot would not be a bad move.

  Despite Childress trying to turn the clock back to the 1930’s, someone will need to catch passes for the Vikes.

  It’s not like there is a lot of competition – at this point it would be a shocker if Rice didn’t open the season as the number two receiver.

  After he reads this, the owner of PPE will say “there’s no way I’m taking Rice” but he should.


– As you can guess, the owner of the PPE is a Viking fan.

 


10) Bugaha Bombers (9-5) — JaMarcus Russell (QB-Oak)

  He also is known as a risk-taker and would not be adverse to taking a rookie quarterback – either Russell or Brady Quinn.

  With the injury to Andrew Walter, it looks like Russell may be the first to see action on the field so I’m slotting him here.

  Should Quinn rip the starting job away from Charlie Frye, then I would take Quinn over Russell, mainly because the Raiders are going to stink to high heaven.


– The polar opposite of the owner of the SGA, the owner of the Bombers is a proponent of the rookie draft.

 


11) Blitzkrieg (7-7) – Ted Ginn, Jr. (WR-Mia)

– Blitz will likely go with the best receiver left on the board.

  There are questions about Ginn – especially from Fin fans and Fin players – but I expect Cameron to get the most out of him.

  As a returner and receiver, he has the potential to be even better than Devin Hester.

  Of course, this is all predicated on Ginn being 100 percent at the start of the season. If his bum ankle doesn’t heal, no team will be picking Ginn in either draft.

  If the pick here isn’t Ginn, it could be Sidney Rice, Dwayne Jarrett or Dwayne Bowe.

 


12) Iron City (10-4) – Robert Meachem (WR-NO)

– Playing for the high-scoring Saints, Meachem was a lock to be a top half of the draft pick until he showed up at OTAs overweight and promptly got hurt.

  He’s now listed as probable for the start of training camp in a month.

  However, City had great success with a rookie Saints receiver last year (Marques Colston) and if Meachem is healthy, I would expect City to take a flier on him.

  After all, with the last pick in the draft, you can take chances because you don’t expect a rookie this late to contribute.

 

Lon Anderson, Commissioner

The World League of Fantasy Football

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