Football season is fast approaching and with it, comes fantasy football.
While there’s no foolproof way of drafting your fantasy team, it’s key to get your first few picks right if you hope to compete for your league’s championship at the end of the season.
With the help of Fantasy Pros, we gathered the rankings of 17 experts from The Athletic, Yahoo! Sports, Sports Illustrated, CBS Sports, Walter Football, and theScore in order to put together a concensus ranking from experts across the sports world.
Running backs are once again the most vital position in the sport, and quarterback looks to be surprisingly deep this year, though the top QBs will likely still get fantasy players their money’s worth.
Take a look below and plan out your strategy for the first few rounds of your upcoming draft.
1. Todd Gurley — RB, Los Angeles Rams
Average Rank: 1.2
One thing to know: Todd Gurley had an absolutely unbelievable 2017, accumulating 2,093 total yards and 19 touchdowns. Those numbers would be tough to replicate, but he’s still almost universally the top overall draft pick for fantasy players.
2. Le’Veon Bell — RB, Pittsburgh Steelers
Average Rank: 2.3
One thing to know: Le’Veon Bell has been a top-five rusher for two straight seasons since coming back from his 2015 injury. He’s also an important part of the Steelers passing game for PPR players.
3. Ezekiel Elliott — RB, Dallas Cowboys
Average Rank: 3.2
One thing to know: In 25 career starts, Ezekiel Elliott averages 104 yards per game. If he can continue that pace through the 2018 season, fantasy owners who snagged him in the first round won’t be disappointed.
4. David Johnson — RB, Arizona Cardinals
Average Rank: 4.0
One thing to know: Drafting David Johnson first overall burned a lot of fantasy players last year when he went down with a season-ending injury in Week 1, but he’s still a force of nature and the focal point of the Cardinals offence.
5. Antonio Brown — WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Average Rank: 4.9
One thing to know: Antonio Brown is one of the most consistent performers in the NFL, having been top-five in the league in receiving yards for five straight seasons.
6. Alvin Kamara — RB, New Orleans Saints
Average Rank: 7.7
One thing to know: For PPR players, Alvin Kamara represents a huge value – in his rookie campaign with the Saints, he finished the year with 81 receptions to go along with his solid rushing numbers.
7. DeAndre Hopkins — WR, Houston Texans
Average Rank: 7.9
One thing to know: Even with Deshaun Watson out for half of the 2017 season, DeAndre Hopkins still finished the year as the second best receiver in fantasy – expect his numbers to show a bit of improvement with Watson hopefully back for the whole year.
8. Saquon Barkley — RB, New York Giants
Average Rank: 8.5
One thing to know: Rookie running backs have led the league in rushing for two straight seasons, and Saquon Barkley looks ready to follow in the footsteps of Ezekiel Elliott and Kareem Hunt.
9. Kareem Hunt — RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Average Rank: 10.1
One thing to know: Kareem Hunt fumbled on his first NFL touch to start 2017, and then never lost the ball again. Patrick Mahomes is stepping into the starting quarterback role in Kansas City, but Hunt will continue to be one of the most important features of both the Chiefs’ passing and rushing attack.
10. Odell Beckham Jr. — WR, New York Giants
Average Rank: 10.1
One thing to know: Odell is back from injury this year, and with the Giants now sporting more offensive weapons beyond his speed and hands, might find himself a bit more open this year.
11. Julio Jones — WR, Atlanta Falcons
Average Rank: 11.0
One thing to know: For four straight years Julio Jones has been one of the top three receivers in the league in terms of yards, but he’s never had more than eight touchdowns any of those seasons. If he and Matt Ryan can connect in the end zone a bit more, Jones could reach another level of fantasy dominance.
12. Melvin Gordon — RB, Los Angeles Chargers
Average Rank: 12.4
One thing to know: Melvin Gordon gave fantasy owners the consistency they crave during his 2017 season, posting double-digit totals in all but three games and clearing 30 fantasy points twice.
13. Leonard Fournette — RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Average Rank: 13.1
One thing to know: Leonard Fournette came out the gate blistering, scoring seven touchdowns in his first six regular-season NFL games, but found the end zone just three times after Week 6.
14. Dalvin Cook — RB, Minnesota Vikings
Average Rank: 14.0
One thing to know: Dalvin Cook’s rookie season was cut short by an ACL tear in Week 4 last year. Halfway through the 2018 preseason, he still hasn’t seen game action, but he is expected to be back and ready to go for Week 1.
15. Michael Thomas — WR, New Orleans Saints
Average Rank: 14.0
One thing to know: Drew Brees seems to throw for 4,000 yards every season, and for the past two years, Michael Thomas has been a big part of why. Averaging almost 1,200 a year through his two seasons in the NFL, he still has plenty of room to grow.
16. Keenan Allen — WR, Los Angeles Chargers
Average Rank: 15.4
One thing to know: Like Thomas, Keenan Allen makes a living catching balls from one of the most consistent quarterbacks in the league. After nearly clearing 1,400 yards in 2017, Allen will look to build on a career season.
17. A.J. Green — WR, Cincinnati Bengals
Average Rank: 17.8
One thing to know: Through seven seasons with the Bengals, A.J. Green has averaged almost 1,200 yards and eight touchdowns a year – he’s a solid anchor for any fantasy owner looking to lock down the receiver position before making a few riskier picks.
18. Davante Adams — WR, Green Bay Packers
Average Rank: 17.9
One thing to know: With the departure of Jordy Nelson, expect Devante Adams to get even more attention from Aaron Rodgers this season, though he’ll probably get a bit more attention from opposing defences as well.
19. Devonta Freeman — RB, Atlanta Falcons
Average Rank: 20.1
One thing to know: After scoring five touchdowns in the first four weeks of 2017, Freeman found the end zone just three times through the rest of the season.
20. Mike Evans — WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Average Rank: 22.2
One thing to know: Mike Evans has cleared 1,000 yards receiving in all four of his NFL seasons, but like many fantasy questions for players near the top of the draft, the difference between star and superstar comes down to touchdowns. Evans has shown he can be both, with two career seasons with 12 touchdowns and two other years with five or less.
21. Rob Gronkowski — TE, New England Patriots
Average Rank: 23.2
One thing to know: As long as he can remain healthy, Rob Gronkowski in one of the most dominant forces in the NFL. As Tom Brady’s top target this year, he should be due for another monster season if he can stay on the field for 16 games.
22. Jordan Howard — RB, Chicago Bears
Average Rank: 24.0
One thing to know: Jordan Howard has toughed out two seasons as the most dynamic weapon of the Bears offence. With Mitch Trubisky a year older and the likes of Allen Robinson and Trey Burton now in Chicago, there’s a chance the game opens up even more for Howard in 2018.
23. T.Y. Hilton — WR, Indianapolis Colts
Average Rank: 24.4
One thing to know: T.Y. Hilton suffered through a difficult season without Andrew Luck, but with his starting quarterback back in the lineup, expect Hilton to bounce back along with him.
24. Joe Mixon — RB, Cincinnati Bengals
Average Rank: 26.9
One thing to know: The Bengals entered 2017 with a crowded depth chart at running back, but heading into this season Joe Mixon has a firm grasp on the top spot and an improved offensive line to run behind.
25. Jerick McKinnon — RB, San Francisco 49ers
Average Rank: 30.1
One thing to know: Jerick McKinnon has spent his career thus far as a second or third option on the depth chart for the Vikings, but after moving to San Francisco in the offseason, is set to be the top running back on the team.
26. Christian McCaffrey — RB, Carolina Panthers
Average Rank: 30.3
One thing to know: Christian McCaffrey hasn’t wasted any time reminding opponents of his big-play ability, springing a 71-yard touchdown run against the Dolphins in the preseason.
27. Stefon Diggs — WR, Minnesota Vikings
Average Rank: 30.6
One thing to know: Stefon Diggs was a key part of the Vikings offence in 2017, including making one of the greatest plays in the history of the franchise. With the arrival of Kirk Cousins in Minnesota this offseason he has a chance to be even better.
28. Adam Thielen — WR, Minnesota Vikings
Average Rank: 31.1
One thing to know: Just alongside Diggs comes Adam Thielen, who proved to be another breakout star of the Vikings 2017 and the first Minnesota receiver to eclipse 1,000 yards since 2009. He should also have a chance to improve with Cousins now under center.
29. Travis Kelce — TE, Kansas City Chiefs
Average Rank: 31.8
One thing to know: While he might not be as immediately unstoppable as Gronk, Travis Kelce is far more dangerous than the average NFL tight end, and with opposing defences also having to deal with Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill, there are plenty of opportunities for Kelce to run away as the top tight end of the year.
30. Tyreek Hill — WR, Kansas City Chiefs
Average Rank: 32.4
One thing to know: For any fantasy owners worried Tyreek Hill’s production might drop off a bit as Patrick Mahomes took over for Alex Smith, it looks as though Hill is going to get along with his new quarterback just fine.
31. Doug Baldwin — WR, Seattle Seahawks
Average Rank: 34.5
One thing to know: Doug Baldwin suffered a knee injury on the second day of training camp this year, but is expected to be ready to go when Week 1 rolls around. While the Seahawks roster has changed quite a bit since their Super Bowl win four years ago, Baldwin and Russell Wilson remain.
32. Jay Ajayi — RB, Philadelphia Eagles
Average Rank: 36.2
One thing to know: Jay Ajayi was still able to generate value for fantasy owners in 2017 despite the Eagles tendency to use a wide committee of running backs. With LeGarrette Blount gone this year, Ajayi might see his carries jump up a bit, but it will still very much be a team effort running the ball in Philadelphia.
33. Amari Cooper — WR, Oakland Raiders
Average Rank: 37.8
One thing to know: Amari Cooper had a down year along with the rest of the Raiders in 2017. Hopefully new head coach Jon Gruden can help him bounce back.
34. Alex Collins — RB, Baltimore Ravens
Average Rank: 38.9
One thing to know: Alex Collins struggled out of the gate a bit for the Ravens, but found his footing by the end of the year, scoring all six of his touchdowns in the final seven weeks of the season. He should be the most consistent producer the Ravens offence has to offer to fantasy players this year.
35. Aaron Rodgers — QB, Green Bay Packers
Average Rank: 39.6
One thing to know: Aaron Rodgers has thrown at least 38 touchdowns in four of the past five seasons he’s been able to stay healthy. The quarterback position is pretty deep this year, but Rodgers is still plenty worth the investments to fantasy players who think they have a read on some deep sleepers elsewhere in the draft.
36. Larry Fitzgerald — WR, Arizona Cardinals
Average Rank: 39.8
One thing to know: Larry Fitzgerald has been in the NFL since 2004, and just last year, tied a career high with 109 receptions. He might be old, but in PPR leagues, he’s still plenty worth a reaching a bit.
37. Demaryius Thomas — WR, Denver Broncos
Average Rank: 39.8
One thing to know: After struggling as the Broncos failed to find a playable quarterback all through the 2017 season, Demaryius Thomas should see his numbers improve this year with Case Keenum in Denver.
38. LeSean McCoy — RB, Buffalo Bills
Average Rank: 40.2
One thing to know: With the Bills likely to start either a rookie or a turnover machine Week 1, LeSean McCoy might be the only player on the Buffalo offence you can trust with the ball.
39. Kenyan Drake — RB, Miami Dolphins
Average Rank: 41.0
One thing to know: Kenyan Drake is another player who looks to assume the starting role after two years as a rotation back for the Dolphins. He’s already shown flashes of his star potential, going off for 193 total yards in Miami’s upset win over New England late last year.
40. Zach Ertz — TE, Philadelphia Eagles
Average Rank: 41.3
One thing to know: Zach Ertz present a similar defensive mismatch to opposing teams as the other top tight ends in fantasy. He’s also about as consistent as you can hope for from the position, with over 70 receptions and 800 yards in each of the past three seasons.
41. Allen Robinson — WR, Chicago Bears
Average Rank: 43.9
One thing to know: Allen Robinson caught just one pass in 2017 before tearing his ACL and missing the rest of the year. This season, he’ll get a new start in Chicago as the top deep threat for sophomore quarterback Mitch Trubisky.
42. Juju Smith-Schuster — WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Average Rank: 43.9
One thing to know: With opposing defences already overwhelmed attempting to stop Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell, Juju Smith-Schuster emerged as a huge part of the Steelers offence as a rookie last year.
43. Derrick Henry — RB, Tennessee Titans
Average Rank: 44.3
One thing to know: Derrick Henry was a rather boom-or-bust player through 2017, with a few 100-yard performances and a few total duds. Be sure to have some more consistent players if you plan on taking Henry on your roster this year.
44. Lamar Miller — RB, Houston Texans
Average Rank: 45.6
One thing to know: Lamar Miller struggled at points through 2017, but appears set up for a big year with Watson back at quarterback for the Texans. Miller will also be helped if J.J. Watt can return and help keep the score close enough to keep running the ball a viable option well into the second half.
45. Marvin Jones — WR, Detroit Lions
Average Rank: 48.2
One thing to know: The Detroit Lions might not produce a lot in terms of postseason success, but they have provided fantasy players with numerous studs over the years. Marvin Jones is set for another big year as Matthew Stafford’s top target on a team that often needs a big play.
46. Golden Tate — WR, Detroit Lions
Average Rank: 48.8
One thing to know: Alongside Jones is teammate Golden Tate. Both Jones and Tate cleared 1,000 yards receiving last year with the Lions.
Josh Gordon — WR, Cleveland Browns
Average Rank: 48.9
One thing to know: While his career has been marked by off-the-field issues, Josh Gordon is undoubtedly one of the most dangerous receivers the NFL has seen in recent years when playing at this peak. Gordon just recently reported to Browns camp, having taken some time to focus on his mental wellbeing. If you’re hesitant to take a player we’ve yet to see in action yet, teammate Jarvis Landry also looks set to produce big numbers for this revamped Browns team.
48. Tom Brady — QB, New England Patriots
Average Rank: 49.6
One thing to know: Another ageless wonder, Tom Brady has seen his supporting cast change over and over again, but still always finds a way to throw for 4,000 yards and 30 touchdowns.
49. Brandin Cooks — WR, Los Angeles Rams
Average Rank: 50.9
One thing to know: Brandin Cooks was one of the Rams’ big signings of the offseason, and will likely be a new favourite target for Jared Goff.
50. Royce Freeman — RB, Denver Broncos
Average Rank: 53.4
One thing to know: While Royce Freeman doesn’t have the name recognition of fellow rookie Saquon Barkley, he could certainly be a boon to fantasy owners later in the draft, as he is expected to be heavily involved in the Denver offence.
Now check out how every team stacks up at quarterback at the start of the 2018 season.
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