NFL Draft fantasy football analysis: Round 1

      May 8, 2014 @ 21:20:26 PDT

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21) FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Green Bay Packers

Fantasy football analysis: It's not a laughing matter if you're Packers FS Sean Richardson, but Clinton-Dix can be penned into the starter free safety spot and could have an immediate impact on this secondary. He has notable IDP value (No. 2 DB upside) and could help Green Bay climb from the middle of the pack in team defense leagues. They're a low-end DT1 gamble.

22) QB Johnny Manziel, Cleveland Browns

Fantasy football analysis: Johnny Football gets to compete with Brian Hoyer (knee) for the starting job. ... Let's face it, who are we kidding by saying "compete." It's Manziel's job to lose, as far as I am concerned. He is the most NFL-ready quarterback in the draft. His ability to escape and create plays on the move could make him a legit fantasy option in 2014. Cleveland needs to add more weapons for him, however, but offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is experienced in getting the most out of a rookie with similar skills (Robert Griffin III). Manziel is QB2 who just might force you to make tough weekly lineup decisions.

FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Green Bay Packers

23) OLB Dee Ford, Kansas City Chiefs

Fantasy football analysis: Ford is likely to convert from defensive end to outside linebacker; KC needed more depth and long-term talent on the edge. Don't count on him in single-year IDP leagues. KC's 2013 No. 1 fantasy defense returns largely intact, but you should consider them a suspect top-10 option. Big-play defenses tend to have a hard time replicating fantasy success year after year.

24) CB Darqueze Dennard, Cincinnati Bengals

Fantasy football analysis: Cincy gets a great cornerback at a good price. Their defensive backfield is aging and has injury concerns. Dennard may not be a draftable fantasy commodity in IDP circles, but he has the ability to help the No. 5-ranked fantasy D of a year ago.

25) CB Jason Verrett, San Diego Chargers

Fantasy football analysis: Rookie corners can offer a wealth of fantasy points in IDP leagues, although Verrett's game isn't conducive to producing high tackle totals. He could produce a few splash plays. Avoid him in IDP setups and the Chargers in standard formats.

26) OLB Marcus Smith, Philadelphia Eagles

Fantasy football analysis: Smith is a 251-pounder who will come off the edge in Philly's 3-4 alignment. He needs to learn to play standing up, and he should be a rotational player in his rookie year. Avoid him in fantasy leagues. Philly's group D is a matchup play in most formats.

27) SS Deone Bucannon, Arizona Cardinals

Fantasy football analysis: Bucannon is an athletic strong safety who can complement free safety Tyrann Mathieu (knee). The rookie might make for a sneaky IDP pick later in your draft, provided he is the Week 1 starter. Arizona's overall defense is a solid DT1.

28) WR Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina Panthers

Fantasy football analysis: Cam Newton gets a 6-foot-5 receiving target, but can Benjamin make the jump to become a bona fide No. 1 receiver in the NFL? I have my doubts. The Cats aren't done yet with addressing this deep position in the draft, so I can see a scenario in which Benjamin might have serious competition for touches in a run-first offense that still has a huge hole at left tackle. Regardless, he is draftable, but we need to know more before assigning a true value here.

CB Bradley Roby, Denver Broncos

29) DT Dominique Easley, New England Patriots

Fantasy football analysis: Easley (knee) is coming off a torn ACL suffered last fall, so he should make it to training camp on time. There is top-30 talent here, and New England needs young blood along the interior line. He has some pass-rushing ability for a big man. Don't count on any IDP contributions in 2014, but New England is a low-end starting unit as a whole.

30) SS Jimmie Ward, San Francisco 49ers

Fantasy football analysis: The undersized Ward (5-foot-11, 193 pounds) is expected to compete for time at safety and nickel back. He is more likely to find action as the latter, since FS Eric Reid and SS Antoine Bethea aren't going anywhere at the back end. San Fran's defense could be in for a fantasy letdown. Ward isn't draftable in individual formats.

31) CB Bradley Roby, Denver Broncos

Fantasy football analysis: Despite adding Aqib Talib this offseason, cornerback was a must-draft. Roby will battle for time and has an outside shot at being a fringe IDP contributor. Denver's defensive unit is in the same territory for standard league formats.

32) QB Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings

Fantasy football analysis: There is potential here, even though I am in no way a Bridgewater believer. I question how he'll hold up to an NFL beating, despite being tough as nails at Louisville. In best-case scenario for Bridgewater's future, he redshirts in 2014 and learns behind the relatively safe Matt Cassel. Bridgewater is likely to appear at some point this season, especially when Minnesota is officially out of the playoff hunt. It is tough to imagine he will offer anything but inconsistent flashes of potential this year.

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About Cory J. Bonini

Cory is KFFL's General Manager. In late 2002, he joined the KFFL staff as a research analyst and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1996. A member of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, as well as Fantasy Sports Writers Association, Bonini has been featured in print, on radio and on scores of websites. Bonini co-hosted Big Lead Sports on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio from 2011 to 2012.

Bonini was recognized with the 2010 Best Article in Print Award from the FSWA and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. In '11, he finished first overall in the FSWA NFL experts challenge that featured 60 of the industry's best competitors.

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