KFFL.com's Fantasy Football Analysis Draft (FAD) brings you behind the scenes on all 16 rounds of an actual fantasy football league draft. Each of our experts participating give you their analysis on why they took the player they did. This is not a mock fantasy football draft; this league will be played out during the course of the 2012 fantasy football season ... each participant is drafting to win!
A standard scoring system with one point per reception (RB-WR-TE) was used for this draft.
1) Torrey Smith, wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens
Team: Eric McClung | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: Last year as a rookie Smith was targeted 36 times on pass attempts of 20 or more yards downfield, third most in the NFL. Unfortunately, Joe Flacco struggled with accuracy on his deep ball after being one of the better distance throwers in 2010. Now that Smith has a season under his belt and is working to become a more complete receiver it would not be a surprise to see him bump Anquan Boldin from the No. 1 receiver role in Baltimore. Assuming Flacco returns to normal on completing the big pass, Smith will provide a healthy return as my WR2.
2) Tony Gonzalez, tight end, Atlanta Falcons
Team: Ryan R. Bonini | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: When hindsight kicks in, I'll probably regret not taking a quarterback here; but, honestly, they're a dime a dozen at this point. Eric helped make the decision easier, as I had my eyes on Torrey Smith with my last pick and was considering him here. However, the safer decision (and my draft has oddly taken a massive turn towards safe picks the last few rounds) is securing another starter before filling in another backup slot. A lot of teams still need a tight end, and I fear the last two tight ends I really like would be gone before my next pick. Enter Gonzo, who was the third-best tight end in this scoring system a year ago. Asking for another 80-875-7 stat line would be ambitious, but with the aerial attack Atlanta has built with Julio Jones and Roddy White on the outside, Gonzo will continue to create havoc over the middle and he's always getting
looks in the red zone. Seventy receptions, 700 yards and six touchdowns should be well within reach in what will likely be the vet's final year.
3) DeSean Jackson, wide receiver, Philadelphia Eagles
Team: Nicholas Minnix | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: The RBs in this stretch - minus C.J. Spiller, whose sitch and schedule just turn me off - fail to excite me. I'd rather fill my WR3 spot with a good rebound candidate. Jackson isn't a holdout this year, and there's less turmoil in Eagles camp in general. If Michael Vick is still dangerous, so is his favorite deep threat, who should notch at least 60 catches, 1,000-plus yards and six or seven TDs in 2012.
4) Kenny Britt, wide receiver, Tennessee Titans
Team: Dan Dobish | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: OK. I picked up Dez Bryant earlier. Now Kenny Britt? No, I don't have a thing for guys who appear in police blotters. However, these guys are tumbling down the draft board due to their indiscretions off the field. On the field, they are tremendous talents. Britt was on his way to a Pro Bowl berth last year until a serious knee injury derailed his season. As a third WR on my roster, I could certainly do a lot worse. I like what I've seen in glimpses from Britt, and I hope he can stay healthy and out of the commissioner's office.
5) Jonathan Stewart, running back, Carolina Panthers
Team: Tim Piotrowski | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: Stewart has been a solid rusher since entering the league but became a factor in the passing game last season. The main problem for Stewart is that he will be sharing playing time with running back DeAngelo Williams and fullback Mike Tolbert, but he should have a steady role in the offense this season. I hope he will be able to get at least 1,000 total yards, 30-35 receptions and six to eight touchdowns.
6) Jermaine Gresham, tight end, Cincinnati Bengals
Team: Keith Hernandez | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: I was hoping, like several others before me, that Torrey Smith would fall to me with this pick. Oh well. I don't mind settling for Gresham, who is ready to break out in Cincy's West Coast offense. Andy Dalton will only get better. The same goes for A.J. Green, who can stretch the field and allow Gresham to thrive underneath and over the middle. I'm expecting Gresham to catch close to 80 balls and score seven to eight times.
7) Michael Crabtree, wide receiver, San Francisco 49ers
Team: Jack Douglas | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: Crabtree was hot during the second half of 2011, which was his third season in the league. He is set to blossom in 2012 as one of the two starting WRs in San Francisco. In 2011, his line was 72-874-4. As Alex Smith and the rest of the offense mature in their second year under head coach Jim Harbaugh, look for those numbers to increase, making Crabtree a fine third level WR. I look for about 80-85 receptions, about 1,000-1,100 yards receiving and six to seven TDs.
8) Peyton Hillis, running back, Kansas City Chiefs
Team: Ryan Dodson | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: I feel this is a critical round for me, and I'm paying a tall price for an RB3. However, I feel like it's a crapshoot any way I go. Hillis arrived to camp in great shape, and he's motivated to land the big payday that eluded him following his breakout season in 2010. With Jamaal Charles coming off a torn ACL, Hillis could be the lightning in a bottle I need to get a leg up on my competition.
9) Donald Brown, running back, Indianapolis Colts
Team: Cory J. Bonini | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: I had targeted Peyton Hillis here, but Dodson scooped me on the rebound candidate. Then I looked at C.J. Spiller, but I'd rather not venture down that road. Brown showed flashes of being worth the first-round pick Indy spent on him a few years back, and I am not worried much about Delone Carter stealing too many looks. Indy's OL is a concern, but if Andrew Luck lives up to the hype, Brown should get plenty of chances to be a reasonable flex play. I'm optimistically hoping for at least 1,200 offensive yards and a half-dozen scores, at minimum.
10) C.J. Spiller, running back, Buffalo Bills
Team: Tim Heaney | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: Just the RB3/flex option I was hoping for when I set my strategy to wait on RBs. Fred Jackson is 31 and is coming off a broken fibula, AND Spiller is going to take a big part of the workload. At this point in the draft, I'm taking talent before "role" and aiming for 1,300 total yards, around 40 catches and upwards of seven total touchdowns from what could be the next big breakout carrier.
11) Brandon Pettigrew, tight end, Detroit Lions
Team: Jared Byrd | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: I would have drafted Donald Brown or C.J. Spiller if either player had fallen to my spot in the draft but decided to go in another direction because the list of RBs remaining on the board wasn't impressive. I settled for Pettigrew, who had the most catches (83) and receiving yards (777) of anyone on the Lions not named Calvin Johnson in 2011. I expect him to post a line of 80-800-5 this year.
12) Brandon Pettigrew, tight end, Detroit Lions
Team: Brian Polking | Team Roster | League Scoring
Fantasy football analysis: After totaling 20 touchdowns in the past three years as a toy for Drew Brees, the former first-round pick will step into a more prominent role in the San Diego offense. Meachem has the speed to stretch the field, and I see him filling the role of the departed Vincent Jackson. While Meachem may not get me 100 catches, being one of Philip Rivers' top targets should result in 1,000 yards and double-digit scores.
How do you feel about each selection? Would you have made the same move? We want to hear your thoughts in the comments area below.
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