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Fire, Ice and current ADP Price

Written by: Austin Thomas

Every offseason we see the market price of players' draft value shift up or down leading up to your fantasy football drafts. With the NFL draft giving everyone rookie fever and then people's favorite sleepers getting hyped up in OTA's the values on certain players just get drastically inflated. Or on the flip side, we see negative press on rumors of a potential trade, release, or even a scheme change to decrease a player's cost. I'm here to guide you through all the craziness and assist you in finding the best average draft position (ADP) values to help ace your drafts! Underdog Fantasy is the most popular source for Best Ball drafts during the summer months, so these ADPs are up to date with real people drafting in real-time (you can find these ADPs here). Draft season is just around the corner, or already here for some of you, so these are some of the fiery targets or frosty avoids for your fantasy teams.



Desmond Ridder (ADP 205.7; QB29):

The Atlanta Falcon's new starting quarterback is by far my favorite passer to buy at his current ADP. Last season, Desmond Ridder started four games, and averaged 10.43 fantasy points per game (PPG) on 708 passing yards with 2 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. Now I understand that Ridder didn't exactly light the world on fire with those numbers, but he looked poised in the starting role, all the while, not having the best supporting cast around him. Insert Bijan Robinson, a healthy Kyle Pitts to go with Drake London, and a full offseason getting the first team reps, and Ridder should be ready to roll this season. He doesn't need to be perfect or light up the scoreboard, but if he can replicate the job of a point guard, and distribute the ball to his playmakers while keeping the turnovers to a minimum, he'll no doubt blow his value out of the water. With all those elite first-round talented players around him he can't fail, right?

Jared Goff (ADP 143.7; QB17):

Last year Jared Goff finished as the QB8 for the 2022 season, averaging 19.96 PPG. In what should be a promising year for the Detroit Lions, Goff is being slept on at QB17. The transaction wire will say Detroit lost DJ Chark, Jamaal Williams, D'Andre Swift, and TJ Hockenson since last year's trade deadline, but their absences have been filled since. Through the draft, the Lions selected running back Jahmyr Gibbs and tight end Sam LaPorta, which very well could be two cornerstones of the offense moving forward. Running back David Montgomery, along with a familiar face at receiver, Marvin Jones, were added via free agency. It is also important to remember that Jameson Williams will be active after his six-game suspension too, adding yet another element to the offense. This new group of players has the potential to elevate this team to new heights and Jared Goff will be the main beneficiary. The talent difference between the former crew versus the new additions does not equate to a nine spot drop in QB ranking. If anything, the current weapons could aid Jared Goff to a 30-pass touchdown season, which he fell just short of last season. Don't sleep on this Lion. His roar is about to awaken.

Ryan Tannehill (ADP 215.3; QB33):

Going outside the top 32 is ludicrous! I get the Tennessee Titans drafted Will Levis atop the second round in the 2023 draft, but I'm expecting a redshirt rookie season (he's just not an NFL-ready quarterback). Ryan Tannehill helped secure two division titles, plus a wildcard appearance, in the last four seasons. If not for a midseason injury, he probably would've made it a third division title last year. The inevitable rebuild is quickly approaching, but I think the Titans will give it at least one more go at the title with offensive veterans Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry both in the final year of their contracts. I'd be surprised if Tannehill didn't start more than half the games, barring injury, which would absolutely smash that QB33 cost.


Joe Mixon (ADP 57.6; RB19):

I cannot fathom how a player that's finished as a top 13 fantasy RB in four out of the last five seasons is being drafted at RB19, and in the one season he missed out, he only played six games. What makes this even more puzzling, is there are 133 touches left behind, from the departure of Samaje Perine. I don't foresee Trayveon Williams, Chris Evans, or rookie Chase Brown accumulating all those touches. Joe Mixon should see an obscene amount of touches this season, and I just don't see how he doesn't finish the 2023 campaign as a top-12 running back. He's the perfect RB1 target in the fifth round, if you went WR-heavy early in your drafts!

James Conner (ADP 85.4; RB27):

Major changes happened in the desert this offseason. The Arizona Cardinals moved on from Kliff Kingsbury and Steve Keim, while hiring new head coach Jonathan Gannon and general manager Monti Ossenfort. Oh, and you can't forget the release of WR DeAndre Hopkins either. The culture is shifting, and it'll likely be a down season for Arizona. For fantasy purposes however, that doesn't mean there can't be treasure buried in the sand. Since arriving in Arizona, James Conner has averaged 15.47 fantasy points per game in two seasons with the Cardinals. Keaontay Ingram, Corey Clement, and Ty'Son Williams combined for 52 total touches for the team last season behind Conner, and Arizona didn't draft a single runner, or sign a new one via free agency. It would appear that Conner is poised for yet another high volume of touches this season, and with the lack of firepower at the skilled positions, James Conner is going to bring the heat!

Antonio Gibson (ADP 115.2; RB38):

Antonio Gibson had a down season compared to his first two seasons, yet still finished as RB27 for the year. How does a running back with a great receiving upside, that was handicapped with a couple of injuries, fall to RB38? JD McKissic is now gone, opening up 49 touches to bounce in Gibson's favor. Not only are there more opportunities available, but Washington also hired offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy from the Kansas City Chiefs. The logical thinking is that Gibson will step into that Jerick McKinnon role, which fits his skillset to a tee. Right now, Gibson is being drafted at his absolute floor, and there is nowhere to go but up. He's going to annihilate his current ADP, and make many managers happy!


Diontae Johnson (ADP 71.8; WR37):

A big debate this offseason was Diontae Johnson or George Pickens as the Pittsburgh Steelers WR1, and although I believe Pickens is a talented player, Johnson is the player you should be scooping up. Over the last three seasons, Johnson has averaged 153 targets per season, good enough for fifth best in that span. Diontae Johnson is getting the Miles Sanders treatment from a year ago, meaning he's being faded because he got a goose egg in the touchdown department. I'm willing to bet that doesn't happen again, and he has what they call positive regression in the fantasy world. Despite not securing a single touchdown last season, Johnson still outpaced Pickens in PPG (9.31 > 9.03). Diontae Johnson is an outright steal right now.

Treylon Burks (ADP 73.8; WR39):

This goes hand in hand with my thoughts on Ryan Tannehill. I don't think the Tennessee Titans are just going to roll over, and let the Jacksonville Jaguars ease their way into back-to-back division titles. That's just not in Mike Vrabel's nature. This offseason, Treylon Burks is the de facto number one WR heading into the season, and he's dedicated to getting every rep he possibly can (just check out his travel experience to OTA's here as proof). He even goes on record saying, "I can breathe.", to start the offseason programs, after struggling with asthma during his rookie campaign. Treylon Burks is an elite athlete, and will get every opportunity to succeed in a lackluster WR room. Robert Woods led the team in targets a season ago with 91, and is now with the division rival Houston Texans. Austin Hooper was second on the team with 60, and has also moved on from the team. The highest targeted player from last season, that's still on the roster, is Nick Westbrook-Ikhine (50), followed by WR Kyle Philips (13). Burks is on the cusp of an elite target share this season, and he could wind up closer to a top-12 WR rather than his WR39 ADP.

Rashod Bateman (ADP 89.2; WR45):

Goodbye Greg Roman, hello Todd Monken. Following Lamar Jackson's request to get more weapons around him, and pass the ball more, the Baltimore Ravens signed Odell Beckham Jr, and took Boston College WR Zay Flowers in the first round of the NFL Draft. Weapons? Check! Todd Monken is in his third stint as an offensive coordinator (Tampa Bay Buccaneers ('16-'18) and Cleveland Browns ('19). In 2017 and 2018 with Tampa, the Buccaneers were first (5358 yards) and second (4607 yards) in total passing yards. For the last three seasons, Monken has been in the college ranks, helping the Georgia Bulldogs win back-to-back National Championships, with a top-16 ranked passing game each of the last two seasons (3778 & 4437 yards). More passing on tap? Check! Rashod Bateman has been plagued with injuries his first couple of seasons, but when he's been on the field, he's shown flashes of being a difference-maker. Lamar Jackson even said in a recent interview that Bateman is the WR1, and looks forward to his breakout season. Even if you don't believe in the Raven's new offensive scheme, Bateman going off the board as a WR4 is great value, and he has the upside to be a WR2. If you take out his week eight game, where he only played 17% of the snaps, Bateman averaged 10.7 PPG in five games, which would've been WR48. So, his ADP of WR45 seems more like his floor, with room to exceed expectations in the new era of Baltimore Ravens football.

Elijah Moore (ADP 95.0; WR47):

I'm ready to be hurt again. The 2022 off-season hype for Elijah Moore was loud and proud heading into the season, but all that materialized was a disappointment. A midseason benching, and a trade request, marred what was supposed to be a coming out party. Moore has the attributes of an elite WR, but things just never clicked right with the Jets for the third-year player. A change of scenery, and a quarterback who's actually able to deliver the ball to him, is just what the doctor ordered to get his career back on track. Sometimes we as analysts don't have fancy stats or data to back up our opinions, but rather, just a hunch, and a connecting of the dots to future production. At his WR4 price tag, I'll gamble on him again. If you can, get Moore of Elijah.


Greg Dulcich (ADP 146.1; TE15):

There was a debate between Greg Dulcich and Chigoziem Okonkwo earlier in the offseason, and if you follow me on Twitter, you know I am a strong advocate for Chig. That doesn't, however, mean I don't like what Dulcich brings to the table. I believe he's one of the young up-and-coming tight ends in the game. Sean Payton coming into town is going to do wonders for Dulcich. Payton's always gotten the most out of his players, and he's already claimed that, "Dulcich's menu will be lengthy in the passing game". Despite the trainwreck that was the 2022 Denver Broncos, Greg Dulcich was still third in targets on the team, with 55, despite only playing ten games. If you missed out on the top tight ends, you want to chase upside at the position, and you can't get much better value than right here. Broncos Country, Let's Ride!

Trey McBride (ADP 202.5; TE27):

We might be another year away from the full Trey McBride breakout season, but as I mentioned above with Greg Dulcich, you want to chase upside if you don't draft one of the top tight ends. McBride has a path to being one of the top three targeted players on his respective team, thanks to the release of DeAndre Hopkins. That's typically the recipe for tight-end fantasy success. Understandably, Zach Ertz remains on the team, but he'll be 33 years of age this season, and is coming off a major knee injury. Ertz has been an impact player for several years, but he might be a little slow out of the gate this season. The passing of the torch will commence this season, from Ertz to McBride, as the Cardinals look towards the future, and see what the younger talent can contribute to the team. Going at a TE3 price, McBride is worth the dice roll.

Tyler Higbee (ADP 147.8; TE16):

The Los Angeles Rams shipped off Allen Robinson after a disastrous season, and didn't draft a pass catcher until round five of the NFL draft. They also didn't sign anyone in free agency. Behind Cooper Kupp, it's an open competition on who'll be second in targets. Contenders include Van Jefferson, Tyler Higbee, Ben Skowronek, and rookie sleeper Puka Nacua. My bet is on Tyler Higbee. In the nine games Matthew Stafford started last season, Higbee averaged just over seven targets per game. When it comes to fantasy, volume is king and Tyler Higbee certainly has the potential to finish as a TE1. Not a sexy pick by any means, but it'll certainly get the job done.



Joe Burrow (ADP 44.3; QB6):

I might get a lot of backlash on this one, but when it comes to quarterbacks, I try to get the best bang for my buck, and Joe Burrow is just too expensive for my taste right now. Personally, I'd rather wait for Justin Herbert or Trevor Lawrence who will give you similar production at a cheaper price. Now, I'm not saying Burrow isn't worth his pricey value, nor a good player. He's more than deserving. There are, however, better bargains to exploit in your drafts.

Deshaun Watson (ADP 83.9; QB9):

This ADP is a little more of a headscratcher compared to Joe Burrow's. Due to his suspension, Deshaun Watson only started six games in 2022 and averaged 16.43 PPG in those games. According to my calculations, that landed him at QB28, which is behind Watson's "backup", Jacoby Brissett, who started the first 11 games, and averaged 17.28 PPG. I understand Watson was a little rusty since he hadn't played in over a year and a half, and that he was an elite fantasy player the last time we saw him play more than 50% of the games, but still, to slide him in the top10 quarterbacks is ridiculous. Players like Tua Tagovailoa, Daniel Jones, and even Dak Prescott should have similar production, yet are going outside the top-10. The smarter money decision would be passing on Watson, and selecting one of these other three players at a discount.


Breece Hall (ADP 29.6; RB11):

Let me start by saying I love Breece Hall and think he'll have a phenomenal career, but we've historically seen running backs coming off an ACL injury the year prior have a down season. Hall being drafted as an RB1 isn't ideal, and those who draft him that highly will be disappointed. The New York Jets hype heading into the season is high with the addition of Aaron Rodgers commanding the offense now, but to put unrealistic expectations on Breece Hall after a major injury is asinine. Javonte Williams also sustained a major knee injury, yet is being faded, going off the board at RB29. I know there is more to the story with both players, but enough to have a huge gap of 18 players? Maybe I'm wrong and Hall becomes the next Adrian Peterson outlier, but for now, I'm taking the safe route and steering clear.

Aaron Jones (ADP 54.2; RB16):

Pivoting from Aaron Rodgers' current RB1 to his former one, Aaron Jones has consistently been a top-12 fantasy RB over the last four seasons. However, I think this upcoming season is where we see the dip in production start. There has been an offensive youth movement at all the skilled positions over the last few seasons in Green Bay, and Jones could see his volume slowly diminish. "Starters" still on their rookie contracts include Jordan Love, Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, Jayden Reed, Luke Musgrave, Tucker Kraft, and RB counterpart AJ Dillon. Aaron Jones is the "old" man of the group, and more than likely won't be force-fed targets like he was with Rodgers. During Jones' four-year RB1 streak, he's averaged 67 targets per season. With this new developing young core, I don't envision him quite hitting that mark this season. Aaron Jones should still be productive in this new era of Green Bay Packers football, but I think right now he's being drafted closer to his ceiling, and there is better upside to be had out there. Don't fall victim to name value when regression is clearly on the horizon.

Devon Achane (ADP 110.7; RB36):

I typically try to avoid mentioning rookies in these, but the hype for Devon Achane is becoming too much! Not that Jeff Wilson or Raheem Mostert are superior to Achane necessarily, but the duo served just fine as the 1A and 1B options in Miami's rushing attack. In fact, Mostert averaged over 11 carries per game with 11.31 PPG, and Wilson was at 13 carries per game with 13.62 PPG in the games he played 49% or more of the snaps. Oddly enough, both players signed two-year extensions this offseason as well. The Dolphins will use a rotation of rushers in their arsenal, capping the upside of each. Although each one will have their boom weeks, chances are they'll have just as many down weeks too. Rookies are new and exciting, but they're also a mystery and when it comes to an offense such as the Dolphins, who prefer a running back by committee approach, I'm going to bet on the guys that have been in the offensive scheme longer. Jeff Wilson's ADP is sitting at RB52 while Raheem Mostert's at RB48, and both could wind up outscoring Devon Achane altogether. Don't get me started on the Dalvin Cook rumors, which would plunge the value of all three regardless. Fade the hype and gamble on his teammates at a more reasonable price who could outproduce him or be replaced by Cook all together. Would you rather get burned at RB36 or RB48/RB52?


Deebo Samuel (ADP 34.8; WR17):

This is simply too high for Deebo Samuel. With the addition of Christian McCaffrey, Samuel's PPG decreased by almost four points. In the first six games before McCaffrey joined the team, Samuel averaged 15.02 PPG, then dipped down to 11.04 when playing alongside the newly acquired running back. McCaffrey essentially stole the "Deebo Samuel" role away from Samuel. If I did my math correctly, Deebo Samuel finished with 12.88 PPG in 2022 which landed at WR30. Nothing this offseason drastically changed to warrant a spike in his value up to WR17. If anything, it should've dropped with the uncertainty and foggy state of the San Francisco 49ers quarterback situation. Deebo Samuel is still a great player and asset to any roster, but expecting him to return dividends on his price just isn't going to happen. You should pivot to higher upside plays close to his ADP.

Christian Watson (ADP 40.4; WR20):

I Hate to bring down the Green Bay Packers here, but I just can't get on board with these high ADP prices. In 2022 Christian Watson averaged 11.82 PPG in 14 games with Aaron Rodgers, which landed him outside the top30 in points per game for the season. Well, Rodgers is now a New York Jet and Jordan Love has very limited playing experience since entering the NFL. Not to mention all the new additions on offense that'll be competing for targets alongside Watson. All these obstacles in Watson's way just don't add up to a WR20 finish. Avoid him like a moldy piece of cheese if possible.

Kadarius Toney (ADP 70.7; WR36):

Another year, another offseason of playing Russian Roulette with the Kansas City Chiefs WR1 since Tyreek Hill was traded. This draft season, Kadarius Toney has the honor of bosting that title according to the ADP ranks. Unlike last year, where JuJu Smith-Schuster was the obvious WR1 on the team, this current group heading into the 2023 campaign isn't so cut and dry. The Chiefs have selected a receiver in the 2nd round in back-to-back drafts (Rashee Rice and Skyy Moore), hoping one of them can turn into their next alpha. Kadarius Toney has played 19 regular season games in two seasons and has only had three games where he had five or more receptions. All five came in his rookie season, when he was a member of the New York Giants. This doesn't really indicate he'll be a WR1 for a team, does it? I'd rather gamble on the two second round picks the Chiefs drafted, currently going outside the top-50 in wide receivers taken.

Mike Williams (ADP 43.6; WR23):

Big Mike Williams sitting at WR23 is such an easy fade for me. During his six-year career, he's only finished as a top-30 WR once! I recognize Williams has some huge boom weeks, but if I'm drafting someone with a WR2 price tag I'm expecting a little more consistency throughout the season. Taking into account newly drafted wide receiver Quentin Johnston, there is going to be even less volume for Mike Williams to capitalize on. If you're drafting Williams at this price, you're solely relying on touchdowns, and that's a dangerous game to play in fantasy football, especially if they don't hit. This Charger's battery is low, and you should look for a more electrifying upside play for your WR2 spot.


TJ Hockenson (ADP 49.1; TE3):

I absolutely cannot wait to get roasted for this take, but the fact is, this is just too high for TJ Hockenson. Last season was his first top3 finish at the position and that was with an aging Adam Thielen. Well, Thielen is a member of the Carolina Panthers now. First-round rookie receiver Jordan Addison was drafted, and will gobble up some of the target share pie as well. I believe TJ Hockenson is a top5 tight end, and should be drafted as such, but I'd rather select a cheaper alternative such as George Kittle or Dallas Goedert, and get the same production at a later round. This isn't a knock on TJ Hockenson's talent by any means, but rather a business decision to draft a cheaper productive tight end with similar outcome possibilities.

Evan Engram (ADP 92.9; TE8):

Evan Engram going off the board at TE8 is way too rich of a price. There is no doubt Engram rejuvenated his career in Jacksonville after a couple of down seasons, but expecting him to repeat his 2022 season is unrealistic. The Jacksonville Jaguars will get Calvin Ridley back from a season-long suspension, and he'll command 100+ targets alone. The departure of Marvin Jones opens up 81 targets, but between Christian Kirk, Zay Jones, and Evan Engram, they'll still have to give up some opportunities. Zay Jones and Evan Engram will likely be the unfortunate parties to lose targets this season as a result of Ridley's arrival. Fewer targets = lesser production. There are much better upside players in the draft you can scoop up at a much cheaper cost.

Irv Smith (ADP 149.6; TE17):

The Irv Smith hype train has continued into another off-season. This will probably be the best offense he's ever been a part of, however, he'll at best be the fourth option in the passing game, capping his ceiling. To make matters worse, Smith has never produced a top-20 fantasy season, yet he's being drafted as the TE17. How does that even make sense? Irv Smith is an easy fade at his current ADP, and hopefully the hype will be derailed once and for all this time next season.

Fantasy Football is a fun game that we all enjoy playing. Whether it's competing with friends or strangers, we as fans are trying to draft the best possible team to win a fantasy championship. Sometimes our sleepers hit and other times they make us look foolish. The top team doesn't always win, but I can promise you the majority of teams contending get the best values out of their draft selections. Take my advice or not, but please do yourself one favor: Don't reach or overdraft a player just because you like them. It could burn you in the end and put you in a losing situation from the start. Good luck to everyone this draft season!

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