ACC Fantasy Football: A Sabre Draft Party

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TheSabre.com held an ACC Fantasy Football draft on the Edge message board Thursday afternoon. Why? For fun, mainly, but also to stimulate discussion about ACC personnel as the conference enters its first season with 11 teams.

I participated in the seven-team draft along with contributing writer Nick Sauer and five Edge subscribers. All of us selected one quarterback, two running backs, two receivers and one kicker in a six-round serpentine draft.

The scoring system is as follows:

Rushing: 6 points touchdown, 1 point each 25 yards

Passing: 6 points touchdown, 1 point each 75 yards

Receiving: 6 points touchdown, 1 point each 25 yards

Kicker: 3 points FG, 1 point XPT

Players also can score points by returning a punt, kickoff or fumble for a touchdown. For fantasy owners, there are no backups and no free-agent pickups unless one of your players is injured.

Nick has agreed to tabulate the point total for each team all season. We’ll post updated numbers each week. The winner (unless it’s me or Nick) gets his Edge subscription renewed for an extra year. The losers get mercilessly ridiculed.

Here’s how the draft went:

First Round

1) DC Hoo: T.A. McClendon, N.C. State, RB

2) managerbowl: Chris Rix, Florida State, QB

3) Nick: P.J. Daniels, Georgia Tech, RB

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Wali Lundy, Virginia, RB

5) debit: Charlie Whitehurst, Clemson, QB

6) John: Darian Durant, North Carolina, QB

7) FirstCoastCav: Chris Barclay, Wake Forest, RB

Second Round

1) FirstCoastCav: Craphonso Thorpe, Florida State, WR

2) John: Josh Allen, Maryland, RB

3) debit : Lorenzo Booker, Florida State, RB

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Frank Gore, Miami, RB

5) Nick: Bryan Randall , Virginia Tech, QB

6) managerbowl: Ronnie McGill, North Carolina, RB

7) DC Hoo: Cedric Dargan, Duke, RB

Third Round

1) DC Hoo: Airese Currie, Clemson, WR

2) managerbowl: Ryan Moore, Miami, WR

3) Nick: Tramain Hall, N.C. State, WR

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Jason Anderson, Wake Forest, WR

5) debit: Connor Hughes, Virginia, K

6) John: Heath Miller, Virginia, TE

7) FirstCoastCav: Marques Hagans, Virginia, QB

Fourth Round

1) FirstCoastCav: Leon Washington, Florida State, RB

2) John: Xavier Beitia, Florida State, K

3) debit: Chansi Stuckey, Clemson, WR

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Nate Curry, Georgia Tech, WR

5) Nick: Nick Novak, Maryland, K

6) managerbowl: Jon Peattie, Miami, K

7) DC Hoo: Reggie Ball, Georgia Tech, QB

Fifth Round

1) DC Hoo: Brandon Pace, Virginia Tech, K

2) managerbowl: Cedric Humes , Virginia Tech, RB

3) Nick: Duane Coleman, Clemson, RB

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Jad Dean, Clemson, K

5) debit: Alvin Pearman, Virginia, RB

6) John: Jawarski Pollock, North Carolina, WR

7) FirstCoastCav: Derrick Fenner, Maryland, WR

Sixth Round

1) FirstCoastCav: David Jordan, Georgia Tech, K

2) John: Cornelius Birgs, Wake Forest, RB

3) debit: Chauncey Stovall, Florida State, WR

4) Hoos-your-daddy: Jay Davis, N.C. State, QB

5) Nick: Willie Idlette, Wake Forest, WR

6) managerbowl: Deyon Williams , Virginia, WR

7) DC Hoo: Adarius Bowman, North Carolina, WR

Each participant agreed to write a short analysis of his team, explain his picks and evaluate the opposition. Here are their teams and their thoughts:

DC Hoo

QB: Reggie Ball, Georgia Tech

RB: T.A. McClendon, N.C. State

RB: Cedric Dargan, Duke

WR: Airese Currie, Clemson

WR: Adarius Bowman, North Carolina

K: Brandon Pace, Virginia Tech

Gah. The first pick. The one pick you really, really don’t want in this draft. Last year, you take Rivers and you’re happy. This year there is just no frontrunner. My gut reaction is to go for Whitehurst. Except….the league starts 14 RBs and there are 11 ACC teams. Which means if I take a QB first, I could be stuck with two backup RBs and rooting for the inevitable T.A. injury. So that means I take a RB first and grab a QB/RB with my second and third picks.

Hardest thing about the draft is no waivers. So you want to draft a guaranteed starter who won’t be replaced by the coach. So mediocre starters got a bump from me and high potential guys who are dinged up went down my board.

With the first pick, I took McClendon even with his injury problems. He’s the best RB in terms of overall yards and TDs. He’s not splitting time with another back and NCSU returns a very strong OL. T.A. could go for 1100 yards rushing, 400 receiving and 15 TDs. I wanted to trade down so I could grab either Whitehurst or Barclay. No interest so I’m stuck.

In Round 2, McGill was a no-brainer pick for me but he was swiped right before I selected. Cedric Humes was higher on my draft board but he’s not 100%. A RB with leg injuries and a fumbling problem isn’t my cup of tea. Not to mention I expect Imoh to steal a lot of carries when he returns from his moral rehab stint. Tyrone Moss is also high on my board, especially since Gore is a walking injury. But I have to go with Dargan of Duke. He’s the starter of a ground-based offense that plays some weak teams. He scored five rushing TDs last year which says he’s the man in short-yardage situations. In hindsight, Humes probably has more upside, especially with VT’s offensive line. Plus Dargan probably would have slid down (but another 14 places?). A bad pick although hopefully he can roll points against Navy and the Citadel. If there was one upside, it was that I made the right call to pass on Whitehurst. Imagine choosing these guys to be my No. 1 RB.

In Round 3, I went with Currie. He’s the best receiver on a prolific passing team with the ACC’s best QB. And Clemson’s top TB is out for a while. Much better pick than Round 2. Only problem is I’ve entered that stage on my QB depth chart simply called “questionable.”

Round 4, all the kickers are gone. Every quality starter is off the board. I hate picking first/last. For the second time, my pick (Peattie for Miami) was swiped from me right before my turn. So I check on Clemson’s board. Dean has the better leg but hasn’t beaten out the competition. Plus Bowden has been known to switch kickers. So I go for the only sure starter: Pace of VT, forgetting about Barth of UNC. Dean is a better payoff if he starts: High risk and high reward. Don’t like this pick but would have been a stretch once the top four kickers were gone.

Round 5 was a toss-up between Ball and Cory Randolph. Went with Ball due to production and the fact I think he’ll make an improvement between fresh-soph years. GT should be more diversified this year with an improvement in its receiving corps. Ball can also scramble a bit. Much rather have both over Berlin. These guys won’t be replaced unless they’re injured. Also down to the sleeper receivers as there’s not a No. 1 or a great No. 2 guy left.

Round 6, I think Bowman is a bit forgotten at UNC. Has nice big-play potential. Like John, I think Durant will throw for big yardage. Unlike John, I think Bowman will be the big-play guy. He’s got height and speed. Measurables like Deyon Williams , but I think a step more polished than Williams at this stage.

Why no ‘Hoos? I made a conscious decision to avoid UVa players, especially at RB. I think no less than five Wahoos will carry the ball: Lundy, Pearman, Snelling, M.J. and Hagans. That’s a lot of carries to divvy up right there. I think M.J. and Snelling will take more touches from Lundy/Pearman than folks realize. Hagans could be a nice pick at QB. But one thing Groh has proven: He doesn’t give his QBs a lot of rope. So if Hagans struggles, then we’ll see Olsen or McCabe. Ball won’t be replaced and that’s the difference.

In hindsight, I should have taken Tramain Hall and Currie in second and third rounds, then picked up a high-quality scrub RB. Basically it’s Dargan and Bowman vs Hall and Moss. Ouch. Average team unless T.A. explodes.

managerbowl

QB: Chris Rix, Florida State

RB: Ronnie McGill, North Carolina

RB: Cedric Humes , Virginia Tech

WR: Ryan Moore, Miami

WR: Deyon Williams , Virginia

K: Jon Peattie, Miami

I had the second pick and, lucky for me, I thought there were two players who stuck out (or at least I led myself to believe it), so I had to wait to see which one I could get. I actually hoped I could somehow land McLendon and hope to high heck that he doesn’t get hurt again. (I guess now I hope he does get hurt. Not really. I guess I just hope he stinks out loud).

If I had gotten McLendon, I would have waited for my final pick to select a QB. I thought Rix, Whitehurst and Durant were far and away better than the other QBs but also thought that anyone from the group of Hagans, Ball, Randall and Berlin would have been serviceable. Anyway, since I snagged Rix, none of that mattered. I knew most of the stud RBs would be off the board by the time pick No. 13 rolled around, so I knew I was going to have to dig deep on my cheat sheet to make my pick. I hoped maybe Allen would fall but he didn’t and I was happy enough to get McGill. The Heels honk but he’s certainly their feature back and maybe he can get in the end zone a few times this year.

In the third round, I was very unsure whether to pick Ryan Moore and his shoulder or Cedric Humes and his leg. I opted for Moore against some sound advice, figuring the top receiver on a top team was too good to pass up. Little did I know that 10 picks later Humes would still be available. When this pick came up, I noticed that DC Hoo had both of his RB slots filled so I could wait to get Humes and take the only good kicker left on the board. Connor and Beitia were gone and Nick snagged Novak with the pick before me, but Peattie is just fine. After him, there are hardly any kickers left that are surefire starters even.

In Round 5, I made my Hokie Humes pick and waited it out for WRs. I had my eyes on a number of guys but could tell that with 10 picks left and four of them needing WRs, my pickings were going to be slim at best. Pollock, Fenner and Stovall went down, then Nick again snagged someone (Idlette) right before I could get him. At least that meant I could get me a ‘Hoo. I grabbed Deyon WIlliams over Roscoe Parrish because I couldn’t handle having all of Miami’s receiving corps when they might not even have a solid QB situation.

All in all, I got a Heisman hopeful, the featured running backs of two not-very-good teams, the No. 1 receiver on two very good teams and one of the four solid kickers in the league. I was very happy with my results and hope to have a good year!

Nick

QB: Bryan Randall , Virginia Tech

RB: P.J. Daniels, Georgia Tech

RB: Duane Coleman, Clemson

WR: Tramain Hall, N.C. State

WR: Willie Idlette, Wake Forest

K: Nick Novak, Maryland

I am pretty pleased with my team aside from the selection of the injured Duane Coleman. I tried to get players that are big home-run threats on their respective teams. With the exception of Daniels, all of my guys fit the bill. I also am happy to get the best kicker in the league (well, tied with Connor Hughes).

Getting Randall pained me greatly. I can’t stand anything about the Hokies, including their delusional expectations for the upcoming season. The one player that they aren’t delusional about, however, is Randall. I really like his versatility with this pick, as he is Tech’s top returning rusher as well as passer. Expect Randall to have a bigger year running the ball to help cover the fragile Humes and the young running backs. I don’t expect any of them to step up and become the next great Tech back, so I expect to see more passing and scrambling out of Randall. That means worse results for Tech, and far better results for Randall and for me. In other words, a perfect world.

At RB, I believe that Daniels is going to be the most prolific back in the league this year. I don’t think there is any prayer of McClendon staying healthy, which leaves former walk-on Daniels free reign over the league’s rushers. He also will benefit from the improved play of Reggie Ball, which will keep opposing defenses from crowding the line of scrimmage too much. My other RB pick was Coleman in the fifth round. I don’t particularly like Coleman, but he was the only starter left in the draft so I took him. I think Yusef Kelly is actually the better back and will steal all the goal-line carries. Stupidly, I did not realize that Coleman was injured, and so I will lose a decent amount of points at the beginning of the season by holding onto him. The real risk here is that one of the other tailbacks such as Kelly or Merriweather may step up and take command of Coleman’s job before his return, in which case my team would basically be lost. This is easily my team’s biggest question mark.

At WR, I’m pretty pleased with the duo of Hall and Idlette considering they were my third- and sixth-round selections. I got two of the league’s top playmakers who are capable of scoring every time they touch the ball. Both players get yards rushing and receiving, although I’m going to need to see Idlette score more through the air. He had more rushing touchdowns last year, which is good for me, but if he steps it up through the air my team will be in great shape. Hall is one of the league’s best players and new quarterback Jay Davis should learn early to lean on Hall in the passing game. N.C. State is determined to get him the ball, and so I was determined to have him on my team. I expect his rushing numbers to increase this year, which would also be helpful. Hall should be more consistent than Idlette, but Idlette should have 5 to 7 touchdowns this year, whether they come from running or passing.

My kicker is definitely a strength of this team. I wanted Nate Curry from Georgia Tech with my fourth pick, but I was happy to come away with Novak, especially since I got Idlette in the last round to fill out the team. Novak is arguably the best kicker in the ACC, along with Hughes. I expect Maryland to rely pretty heavily on Novak this year and he should score a great deal of points. He also is a friend of mine from high school, so what can you do?

Looking at the league as a whole, a couple of teams catch my eye. I think that managerbowl and FirstCoastCav both have teams with a great deal of potential. I expect Chris Rix to have a huge year for FSU and score a great deal of points for managerbowl. If Cedric Humes gets healthy, McGill and Humes could end up being a solid group of running backs. Ryan Moore of Miami should have a huge year, and Deyon Williams has the potential to score a lot of points. However, if Humes isn’t healthy and UVa doesn’t force the ball downfield, it will be hard for managerbowl to be in the running for the championship.

Something about FirstCoastCav’s team worries me a bit. Marques Hagans should have quite a few points both running and passing the ball this year. Chris Barclay is the No. 3 back in the league and maybe No. 2 ahead of the injury-prone McClendon, and I expect him to be huge this year in Wake’s running scheme. Leon Washington is an amazing athlete and both he and Lorenzo Booker will put up good numbers for FSU. Craphonso Thorpe is an outstanding talent and Derrick Fenner will be good for a few points a week. No player on the team really jumps out at you, but if they all play up to their potential it could be a big year for FirstCoastCav.

The rest of the teams each have aspects that are very strong and the league has a great deal of parity because of it. John’s team should have some huge weeks thanks to Darian Durant, Josh Allen and Heath Miller. All three are the kind of players who can torch you for three scores in a game. Should anything happen to Chris Barclay, you can go ahead and give John the championship as Birgs is a very capable back.

Hoos-your-daddy has good RBs and WRs, and if Gore and Lundy can stay healthy his team will be tough. Those are very big ifs, and it may take Jay Davis a little while to produce at as high a level as he will later in the year. This may mean a few low-scoring weeks at the beginning of the year, but expect this team to come on strong at the end. If Davis starts off on fire and the RBs stay healthy, watch out for this squad.

DC Hoo has two of the league’s best players in McClendon and Airese Currie. Currie will absolutely tear it up this year and should be the top-producing WR. If McClendon can stay healthy, we all know what he can do. Dargan may have a pretty good year for the lowly Blue Devils and expect Reggie Ball to be much improved. Don’t count this team out.

debit has the best QB in the league in Charlie Whitehurst. Whitehurst will put up monster numbers this year and along with Connor Hughes will carry this team. If two of the other players can step it up, this team will be tough. Lorenzo Booker could be amazing or could be ordinary depending on touches, and the same with Stuckey. Chauncey Stovall should be solid, but there are so many good WRs at Florida State that there may not be much left after splitting up all the catches. Alvin Pearman should be solid and will be especially huge if Lundy goes down. Only time will tell, but this team could be great.

Basically, I can see scenarios where any of these teams could win the championship. A lot is going to depend on health and on playing time. It’s sure to be an exciting season and an equally interesting ACC fantasy league season.

Hoos-your-daddy

QB: Jay Davis, N.C. State

RB: Wali Lundy, Virginia

RB: Frank Gore, Miami

WR: Jason Anderson, Wake Forest

WR: Nate Curry, Georgia Tech

K: Jad Dean, Clemson

Strategy: After dreaming about how the draft would play out, my strategy was to make sure that I had a starter at every fantasy position. It did not take me too long to realize that there were only 11 starting running backs in the ACC, and our league had 14 spots to fill. Therefore, I decided early on that I would take running backs with my first two picks. I knew by the third round that I could still get a No. 1 receiver but was unsure what value I could get in the fourth round. While I realized that I could still get a starting QB in the late rounds, I wasn’t sure when I needed to take a kicker. This was a high-risk strategy in that I would be sacrificing a top-flight QB for a starting RB, but I thought it was worth the gamble.

Positives: I have the best set of running backs in the league and arguably the best receiving tandem. While I might have taken Wali a little high in the draft, his production this year will be one of the best in the ACC. When healthy, Frank Gore is one of best running backs in America. After several years of injuries, he is ready for a big year. Jason Anderson is one of the top deep threats in the league. If he gets enough touches in Wake’s run-oriented offense, he can improve upon his 750 yards and six touchdowns. While Jay Davis may not have the physical tools of the top ACC QBs, he is in a pass-oriented system that will generate large passing yards and plenty of touchdowns. Jad Dean was one of the top high school kickers in America and has tremendous leg strength. The starting kicker in Clemson’s high-powered offense is sure to rack up the points.

Negatives: My team is on the brink of destruction, with several high-risk, high-reward picks. Gore is injury-prone and Moss is looking to start. Lundy continues to have bumps and bruises that prevent him from finishing an entire season. Also, with an exceptionally strong backfield, Lundy’s number of carries is sure to go down. Nate Curry will be a solid receiver for Tech, but the jury is out on whether he can be the go-to guy. I have a completely unproven QB, where passing statistics will make or break this fantasy league. Most importantly, I selected a kicker that may not even win the starting job.

Overall: In retrospect, I could regret choosing Lundy instead of Whitehurst or Barclay. However, I think Lundy will have a 1200-yard, 10-touchdown season. (Do you think I have a UVa bias?) Since interceptions are not counted, I think Davis will be a top-four producer with regard to touchdowns and passing yards. My team was built to win this league. The only problem is that there is also a very good chance that I may finish dead last. Too many question marks to make my team one of the favorites. My pick to win would be John (obviously rigged).

debit

QB: Charlie Whitehurst, Clemson

RB: Lorenzo Booker, Florida State

RB: Alvin Pearman, Virginia

WR: Chansi Stuckey, Clemson

WR: Chauncey Stovall, Florida State

K: Connor Hughes, Virginia

When I began my preparation for the draft, I looked at the scoring system and what jumped out was that passing touchdowns would score as six points. Most of you have probably participated in NFL fantasy leagues and the passing TDs are usually scored at three points since quarterbacks seem to throw so many each game, but not usually to the same receiver or running back. The scoring used for the ACC draft told me that the quarterbacks would be at a premium.

This was the first premise of my draft strategy: Draft a quarterback in the first round. I had Whitehurst and Rix in the first tier with Durant, Ball, Hagans and Randall in Tier 2. With the fifth pick I knew I could get one of those six, but I did not expect to get the No. 1 player on my draft board, Whitehurst. It turns out that not everyone in the draft thought the same way as I do. (I know this is shocking news.)

I believe that when you look at the 10 highest-scoring players in this draft at the end of the season, you will see five quarterbacks, two running backs, one wide receiver and two kickers. That’s my fearless prediction and the reason that I had to get a QB in the first round. When reviewing my team, I think that I have the best quarterback and best kicker in the league. The other four players will be interesting to watch throughout the season.

At RB, I selected two players who may not start for their teams but will get plenty of carries and have an outside shot at a touchdown or two on special teams. We have all seen what Pearman can do in Groh’s offense, and while Lundy may be the feature back, Groh is sure to get Pearman enough touches on receptions, runs and special teams to make him worth drafting. My other back, Booker, will challenge Washington for the starting job in Tallahassee.

At WR, I could have picked better. Both picks, Stuckey and Stovall, will be second or third options on their teams. In hindsight, I wish I would have chosen Pollock from North Carolina or Fenner from Maryland instead of Stuckey, but I will live with it and hope for the best.

I think that John and Nick both have strong teams with good kickers and quarterbacks capable of putting up strong numbers. They both have a great running back and wide receiver. I think they will finish in the top four of the league. DC Hoo had a tough draft because of draft order. I think he stole Ball at the end of the fourth round and McClendon should be the leading rusher. Currie will be solid from Clemson, but I think he took Dargan too early.

The late-round steal of the draft will probably be Fenner or Deyon Williams . I struggled with drafting Wahoos because I think that the offense will be so diversified this year. I’m not sure which of the following players will lead the team in touchdowns this year, but it could be any of the following: Lundy, Pearman, Snelling, M.J., Miller, Williams or McGrew.

John

QB: Darian Durant, North Carolina

RB: Josh Allen, Maryland

RB: Cornelius Birgs, Wake Forest

TE: Heath Miller, Virginia

WR: Jawarski Pollock, North Carolina

K: Xavier Beitia, Florida State

My strategy was to invite the five Edge subscribers with the lowest IQs, plus knucklehead Nick Sauer, to participate in the draft. Then I knew I’d have a chance. I also made sure to stock my War Room with plenty of Skittles and Red Bull so I wouldn’t doze off during the fourth round.

After that, I wanted to get one of the top three QBs (Rix, Whitehurst and Durant) and one of the top four Ks (Beitia, Hughes, Novak and Peattie). In this league, those are both high-scoring positions with big dropoffs, in my opinion, after the top guys. Plus I wasn’t sure I could name any of the other kickers in the conference. So that’s why I went with Durant in the first round after Rix and Whitehurst already were off the board. And that’s why I grabbed Beitia, who I think will lead the ACC in scoring, in the fourth round. My hope is that Durant will be involved in a bunch of 52-35 type of games in which he puts up big numbers in a futile effort to rally his team. My concern is that he’ll screw up my squad’s fragile chemistry by threatening to transfer to DC Hoo’s team. At least Durant should be comfortable in this league. There’s no defense in it, just like Chapel Hill.

I’m not crazy about my running backs or receivers. I vividly remember Allen rushing for 257 yards and two TDs against Virginia last year. If he’s half that good this season, and without Bruce Perry around to share carries, he may be as productive as any RB in the league. Birgs, my last pick, scored five TDs for the Deacs last season. But I probably goofed. In retrospect, I should have picked Miami’s Tyrone Moss as my second back. At receiver, I didn’t think Miller would last until the 20th pick, partly because I figured the other owners would be a bunch of homers and overvalue Virginia players. They didn’t, so I was happy to get Heath. I think his numbers will go down without Schaub, but I bet he’s still Virginia’s primary target in the red zone. I also like Jawarski Pollock, my fifth-round pick, because he caught 71 passes last season and has a funny name. I don’t like that he only had one TD in 2003.

Unfortunately, my competition was more clever than I anticipated. They did their research and made solid picks (with the exception of Nick, who took Bryan Randall in the second round and a crippled Duane Coleman in the fifth). To his credit, Nick has a potent trio of P.J. Daniels, Tramain Hall and Nick Novak. In fact, no team jumps out as particularly lousy – or outstanding. I like debit’s team because he has a top QB (Whitehurst) and kicker (Hughes), though his WRs are named Chansi and Chauncey, who sound more like British butlers. For the same reason, managerbowl is my favorite to win the title, thanks to the QB-K combo of Rix and Peattie.

DC Hoo, Hoos-your-daddy and FirstCoastCav are iffy at QB and K but loaded at the other positions. My fantasy football instincts tell me it will be tough for them to win this league, but those instincts are almost always wrong. After all, there’s a reason I’ve never won a fantasy championship.

FirstCoastCav

QB: Marques Hagans, Virginia

RB: Chris Barclay, Wake Forest

RB: Leon Washington, Florida State

WR: Craphonso Thorpe, Florida State

WR: Derrick Fenner, Maryland

K: David Jordan, Georgia Tech

Having played NFL fantasy football before, I knew how
fun this could be with ACC football. So when I saw
John’s invitation to do a Sabre-oriented league, I
jumped at the chance. The rules seemed pretty simple
and there was no week-to-week management. Just a
draft, really. All the work would be done before draft
time, a nice thing since I have so many
other demands on my time.

What I didn’t take into account was how much more work
this would be in researching players. There aren’t any
college fantasy football services with full-time gurus
that I know of. So I had to do all the research, which made good fun. I used several sites
including collegefootballnews.com and TheACC.com for
stats, player evaluations and team previews. From
those sites I made my lists of starting players and
then ranked them based on past/anticipated
performance. As I evaluated and ranked players, I had
to make a conscious effort not to let my allegiances
affect my judgment. For example, I initially had
Heath at the top of the list for WRs and Craphonso
Thorpe next. Realistically, I knew that Craphonso
would likely have better numbers than Heath as a TE
with a new QB. So sadly, I switched the two.
Nonetheless, I vowed to never draft Rix as he is just
too much of a chump to root for, even if he was the
top QB on the board. Thank you, managerbowl, for
drafting that idiot.

So once I had done homework, I decided to put my draft
strategy together. I would go with a RB first and
hope Craphonso would still be available for my second
pick. I never draft a QB first knowing I’ll be able to
get reliable points even with a third-round QB. But big
WR or RB numbers are hard to come by. Then I’d go with
the best RB/WR and go with a kicker last. More on that later.

In Round 1, I went with one of the top returning RBs
in Barclay, then turned right around and
drafted Craphonso knowing he’d have huge
numbers this year. I was hoping that a solid running back
would still be around when I drafted next. Luckily
enough, a solid QB by the name of Marques Hagans
was available in the third and, incredibly, so was
Washington, a RB who’s looking to have a
huge year at FSU. I really think he was overlooked.
Regardless, I was thrilled to get him in the fourth.
In the fifth I had to get a second WR and Fenner was available so I went with him since he should
have a good year. In the last round I had to take the
last available kicker I could find in a high-scoring
offense and went with David Jordan from GT hoping he
holds the job all year. Time will tell whether this
was a sound strategy since I could have gotten Connor
or Novak in the earlier rounds but I just can’t bring
myself to draft a kicker early. If Jordan gets canned,
I may be in trouble.

After looking at the teams, I really think anyone can
win depending on injuries or players losing their starting
jobs. I think some are stronger than others, though.
Here’s my totally subjective look at the strengths and
weaknesses of each team in the order of where I think
they’ll finish.

DC Hoo – average QB with upside, best RB in draft and good
one in Dargan, solid WRs, good kicker. Will be up
there, especially if Ball has breakout year.

managerbowl – good QB, average RBs, good WRs, good
kicker. Solid all around – will be at top.

FirstCoastCav – good QB, great RBs, excellent WRs,
shaky kicker. If Hagans and Jordan produce at all,
will contend.

John – great QB, average/below average RB, best TE in
Miller, Pollock good, solid kicker. If RBs produce,
could be tough to beat.

Nick – good QB, solid RBs, excellent pick in Hall, questionable
one in Idlette, good kicker. All depends on Randall, who has no supporting cast.

Hoos-your-daddy – risky QB pick with potential, solid
RBs, good WRs, average kicker. If Davis is the second coming
of Rivers, we’re in trouble, but what are the odds of
that?

debit – Best QB, second-string RBs, average WRs, great
kicker. Not enough points in RBs and WRs.

I’m probably wrong, though. Should be a fun season.

(A more conventional ACC football preview will be posted tomorrow as J.D. Moss breaks down the league for Edge subscribers.)

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