Welcome to Week 18 of the 2022 Footballguys Roundtable. Our intrepid panel of fantasy pundits discusses and debates four topics every week. Topics are now split into separate features.
This week's roundtable features these four topics:
- Reminders for 2023 (see below)
- Offseason Team Assessments
- Bold Predictions for 2023
- Offseason Points of Interest
Reminders for 2023
Matt Waldman: If this could serve as a reminder for you next year, what would you paint with pixels here and have stick to your memory as you begin your fantasy football work for 2023?
Sean Settle: I will have a sticky note on my computer next season that reads, “It is OK to take a wide receiver in the first round.” I have long subscribed to trying to take the best running back available as the drop-off in tiers felt much bigger than receivers. However, that is proving to be less the case in the age of Cooper Kupp, Justin Jefferson, Davante Adams, and Ja'Marr Chase. The top receivers are far outperforming their lower-tiered counterparts and doing it consistently each week. It will take reminding and reworking of years of drafting to say, “It is okay to take a receiver in the 1st round.”
Chad Parsons: Focus on rushing potential to break ties for quarterback selection in drafts next season. With so many mobile options in the NFL, the classic pocket passers or low-upside runners have a very small window to crash the top 5 or even the top 10 of the position.
Christian Williams: The running back landscape is already shifting, and it's okay to take rookies and second-year players ahead of ADP. The shift from Alvin Kamara and Ezekiel Elliott being sure things to young guns has already happened, and name recognition will push these guys to the front of draft boards. But with the re-emergence of Saquon Barkley to fantasy stardom, Josh Jacobs' dominance, and an influx of talented rookies, it's entirely reasonable to fade aging running backs for the younger guys.
Drew Davenport: Drafting for depth is somewhat of a fool's errand. Sure it's nice to try to draft a deep team, and it feels great leaving a draft knowing you're stacked to the bottom of your roster. But there are two problems with that. First, if injuries hit hard, it won't matter. What feels deep on draft day can change completely by Week 3.
Second, taking players you think give you depth often can make you hold those players during the early weeks of the season when important players are being picked up off the wire. This paralysis can actually hurt you long-term. The dirty secret to our game that a lot of people don't want to admit is that drafting for depth won't fix your season if your best players get hurt. Sometimes it's just about luck with health, so drafting to be super deep instead of drafting for upside is something I'm almost completely going to abandon in 2023.
Sam Wagman: Stop shying away from drafting rookie wide receivers high. They are going to get playing time and a lot of it. Many of us made this mistake with players like Chris Olave and Jahan Dotson. They were both top-16 picks in the NFL Draft, yet neither had an ADP below Round 11 in drafts this season.
Both have played extremely well despite obvious offensive deficiencies from the rest of their teams and serve as a constant reminder that teams will give these rookies chance after chance to showcase themselves in Year 1. The 2023 Draft will undoubtedly give us another solid receiver class, and we need to take advantage of these Round 1 rookies by drafting them early and playing them.
Jordan McNamara: There is so much uncertainty in fantasy football. Injuries, scheduling, matchups, and teams that sit players in critical fantasy weeks have all occurred in the past month, impacting the fantasy season's outcome. Keep this in mind, understand there is a wide range of uncertainty, and act accordingly when valuing players.
Waldman: Based on skills, Zach Evans, no matter what. Okay, maybe not "no matter what." But if the maturity checks out, then yes, no matter what.
If you'd like to see the rest of the topics, once again, you can find them here:
Thanks, and good luck this week!
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