Spring Fantasy Mock Draft -5/13
Fantasy Source Expert: Rob Hurtt
Spring mock draft
May 10, 2005
With the fourth overall selection in the 2005 draft, Rob Hurtt selects Edgerrin James, running back, Indianapolis.
NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue wasn't available to announce the selections in our recent fantasy mock draft. That's OK. We're sure his schedule will be more open when we do it again in early August. Until that preseason mock draft, these results are the ones Fantasy Source readers can study and scrutinize all summer long. Admit it, you don't have anything better planned for your entire summer. I just know it.
This mock draft is a good starting place for pre-draft prep work. Where is the best spot to draft? Where will Peyton Manning go? What about the top rookies? What was George Winkler thinking when he took Kevan Barlow? (We have no clue on that last one; you would think a Niners fan would have a bad feeling about taking Barlow.) These "sensations" and many other burning questions will be addressed in this column. That's sensations about burning questions, not questions about burning sensations. That's another site, pal.
First, a quick introduction of our distinguished panel of fantasy experts ... oh, and that Matthew Berry guy.
Team 1: Senior editor George Winkler, "Sunday Blitz" columnist
Team 2: Freelance writer Ladd Biro, "Judgment Calls" columnist
Team 3: Senior editor Brendan Roberts, Mr. Too Busy with Baseball
Team 4: Associate Editor Rob Hurtt, "Rankings" and "4 'n' Out" columnist
Team 5: Associate Editor Chris Bahr, "Sports Bahr" columnist
Team 6: FOX's Ultimate Fantasy Football Show analyst Andrew Siciliano
Team 7: Assistant managing editor Barry Reeves, King of NFL Draft and War Room scouts coverage
Team 8: TSN radio host Kevin Wheeler, Talks a good game
Team 9: Freelance writer Matthew Berry, "Talented Mr. Roto" columnist
Team 10: NFL projects editor Vinnie Iyer, "Case of the Mondays" columnist
Team 11: Senior managing editor Mike Nahrstedt, the boss (which is why we let him play)
Team 12: Associate editor Roger Kuznia, "Weekend Update" columnist
1. LaDainian Tomlinson, RB, Chargers
2. Shaun Alexander, RB, Seahawks
3. Priest Holmes, RB, Chiefs
4. Edgerrin James, RB, Colts
5. Corey Dillon, RB, Patriots
6. Peyton Manning, QB, Colts
7. Domanick Davis, RB, Texans
8. Rudi Johnson, RB, Bengals
9. Willis McGahee, RB, Bills
10. Randy Moss, WR, Raiders
11. Jamal Lewis, RB, Ravens
12. Clinton Portis, RB, Redskins
Random thoughts: Holmes will be the biggest risk of the first round. Again. If you take that chance, you'll have to bump Larry Johnson up your draft board to cover yourself. Roberts didn't. He took Keyshawn Johnson, his fifth receiver, with the 99th pick. The Johnson he needed went three picks later. ... Manning going sixth seems right. Willis McGahee is the only other back I would consider ahead of Manning. Plus, owners selecting in the middle of the round should be able to find two good starting backs in the next two rounds. For Siciliano, they were Tiki Barber and Carnell Williams. OK, I said should be able to find two decent back, not will. ... Forget about having a top 5 pick; I'd much rather be near the end of the round. LT and Alexander are sure things, but all the other top backs have questions. Owners drafting in spots 9-12 can load up on two backs with first-round potential. You'll see.
13. Julius Jones, RB, Cowboys
14. Donovan McNabb, QB, Eagles
15. Deuce McAllister, RB, Saints
16. Ahman Green, RB, Packers
17. Kevin Jones, RB, Lions
18. Ronnie Brown, RB, Dolphins
19. Tiki Barber, RB, Giants
20. Terrell Owens, WR, Eagles
21. Tatum Bell, RB, Broncos
22. Daunte Culpepper, QB, Vikings
23. Curtis Martin, RB, Jets
24. Torry Holt, WR, Rams
Random thoughts: Julius Jones, McAllister and Green all are potential first-round talents. Green almost certainly won't fall so far in August if his off-the-field troubles are behind him, but there still should be a great choice available at the 16 spot. I'm calling it now; I want to draft ninth. ... Reeves couldn't help taking the first rookie (Brown) off the board. Eighteen might be too high for an unproven NFL player heading to an offense that has its stuff together about as well as Courtney Love. Still, there is no way Brown would have lasted until Reeves' next pick. ... Look at me lecturing about reaching for backs. I took Bell at No. 21, in part because I was forced to scramble for a pick after T.O. went right before me. It wouldn't be the last time Bahr stole my man. Umm, that doesn't sound right. ... After time to reflect, I admit Martin might have been a better choice. See, I still can't write it with conviction, much like I couldn't make myself call Martin's name on draft day. The guy is so consistent, but his age, the Jets' offensive changes and Chad Pennington's shoulder worry me.
25. Chris Brown, RB, Titans
26. Javon Walker, WR, Packers
27. Brian Westbrook, RB, Eagles
28. Marvin Harrison, WR, Colts
29. LaMont Jordan, RB, Raiders
30. Carnell Williams, RB, Buccaneers
31. Chad Johnson, WR, Bengals
32. Joe Horn, WR, Saints
33. Steven Jackson, RB, Rams
34. Reggie Wayne, WR, Colts
35. Cedric Benson, RB, Bears
36. Andre Johnson, WR, Texans
Random thoughts: After going RB-heavy in the first two rounds, owners began taking wide receivers. Six went in Round 3. The receivers taken so far, along with fourth-round pick Darrell Jackson, are the only ones I would feel comfortable using as a No. 1. Owners in 12-team leagues should do their best to get one of those 10. ... I almost feel bad about getting Harrison this late. Part of my reasoning behind selecting a back in the second round was that I knew Holt, Harrison or Chad Johnson would be available here. ... Berry was the only owner who began the draft with three backs. Jackson is a great No. 3, and he didn't suffer a dropoff in his receiving corps -- Jackson, Steve Smith and Anquan Boldin.
37. Hines Ward, WR, Steelers
38. Warrick Dunn, RB, Falcons
39. J.J. Arrington, RB, Cardinals
40. Darrell Jackson, WR, Seahawks
41. Fred Taylor, RB, Jaguars
42. Antonio Gates, TE, Chargers
43. Donald Driver, WR, Packers
44. Tony Gonzalez, TE, Chiefs
45. DeShaun Foster, RB, Panthers
46. Derrick Mason, WR, Ravens
47. Trent Green, QB, Chiefs
48. Marc Bulger, QB, Rams
Random thoughts: This round is sort of a grab bag. Some owners look for a No. 2 receiver. Others, myself included, preferred taking a third back. A few of the almost-elite QBs were taken, as were the two great tight ends. ... Taylor in the fourth? Steal. He will not fall past the third come August, when news about his offseason knee surgery won't be so prominent in owners' minds. ... Iyer is counting on Arrington to be his second starter. Sure, Dennis Green could make it work, but I would be worried about Arizona still having interest in Travis Henry. Someone is bound to take Henry off Buffalo's hands. Despite what the Cardinals say, an Arizona deal is as likely as any other. ... Can Mason perform at his Tennessee level in Baltimore? Call me skeptical.
49. Kevan Barlow, RB, 49ers
50. Roy Williams, WR, Lions
51. Duce Staley, RB, Steelers
52. Jason Witten, TE, Cowboys
53. Plaxico Burress, WR, Steelers
54. Drew Bennett, WR, Titans
55. Michael Clayton, WR, Buccaneers
56. Eric Moulds, WR, Bills
57. Steve Smith, WR, Panthers
58. Reuben Droughns, RB, Browns
59. Jerry Porter, WR, Raiders
60. Brett Favre, QB, Packers
Random thoughts: While I think there aren't enough No. 1 receivers out there, the second tier is quite deep. Most of the receivers taken in Rounds 5-6 are interchangeable. Some owners will stock up here. Others will choose to target a different position in Round 5 and know a decent No. 2 will be available in the next round. ... I decided to take the second path, but my Witten pick is the one I wish I had back. Yeah, he's a nice player, but there was no need to take him here. Plenty of decent tight ends were available five and six rounds later. A receiver (Smith?) would have been more valuable. ... There is no way someone could convince me to draft Barlow. The 49ers' offense will be just as stagnant in 2005 as it was in '04.
61. Deion Branch, WR, Patriots
62. Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Cardinals
63. Dallas Clark, TE, Colts
64. Michael Vick, QB, Falcons
65. Muhsin Muhammad, WR
66. Matt Hasselbeck, QB
67. Alge Crumpler, TE
68. Nate Burleson, WR
69. Jimmy Smith, WR
70. Isaac Bruce, WR
71. Todd Heap, TE
72. Ashley Lelie, WR
Random thoughts: Is it just me, or is the sixth-round crop more attractive than the one from the fifth? I like most of the receivers taken here, especially Fitzgerald and Burleson. (I told you Bahr would get my guy again.) Getting Todd Heap near the end of the round, after five tight ends have already been picked, was a nice move by Biro. ... Michael Vick is on my "do not draft" list. OK, maybe I'll take the guy if he's still there in the seventh round, but he won't be. Thus, I know he won't be on my team. ... Muhammad was the top-scoring receiver last year. Of course he won't repeat his '04 numbers, especially now that he's in Chicago. Still, he's as good as anyone left at this point of the draft.
Random thoughts: The first six rounds will have to satisfy you for now. We'll have a link to the full mock draft results when our site relaunches in June. I'm sure you'll really like the improvements we have in store. Full analysis of the picks from the guys who made them will be available in our 2005 Fantasy Football Owners Manual, which is due to hit bookstores in early July.
Associate editor Rob Hurtt is a fantasy football expert for Sporting News.
If I'm picking ninth and McGahee falls to me, and I have a choice between Green and K Jones in round two I'll buy everyone a beer. Thus far I honestly have no idea which one I would choose between Green and Jones. Green is probably more reliable (although losing two guards and Walker holding out can't be good), but Jones potential is greater.
I still think Dom at 7 is to high.
Count me as another person that would prefer to draft 9th or later.
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