Welcome to the first of many ADP Analysis articles from everyone here at Campus 2 Canton. In this series, a member of our team will break down any ADP trends from all mocks conducted that month to help you get a jump on your league mates!
Since we do not have any prior data to build upon this month, I am going to spend this article looking at some surprising results on all ends of the spectrum. February produced 4 completed mocks, and one with 5 rounds in the books. 3 of those completed mocks were 15 rounds. In the 4th, drafters decided they wanted to continue to 20 rounds and we were happy to oblige!
Like Little Red Riding Hood, I’ll be looking at 3 groupings of players: those that are going too high compared to our C2C rankings, those going too low, and those that are just right.
Kedon Slovis – USC (QB5)
It’s not that Slovis is a bad player, nor is he in a bad situation. In fact, the opposite is true on both of those accounts. No, the real issue with Slovis rests with his physical gifts. Slovis has questionable arm strength and has dealt with shoulder issues each of his first two years on campus. Repeat injuries are worrisome, but shoulder injuries for a QB are the worst. Slovis will produce during his remaining days at USC. The Trojans always have depth at the skill positions and USC tends to play higher scoring games. Is Slovis a surefire NFL prospect? My answer is no, and that makes his second round ADP a reach.
Tyler Shough – Texas Tech (QB32)
I want to first set the record straight here and state that I do not hate Tyler Shough. I think he is a fine college quarterback that made a good decision in the transfer portal, something that has become increasingly rare. I’m just not a believer in Shough as a pro prospect and we have likely seen his ceiling as a college producer.
Shough is the presumed starter at Texas Tech next year, which is nice but I’m not sure it’s a better spot for offensive production than Oregon. He finished as the QB41 on a per game basis last year in an Oregon offense that has traditionally been quarterback friendly for fantasy purposes. QB41 is good, but there are several better values at the position.
Eric Gray – Oklahoma (RB7
I fully acknowledge that there is a large drop in value at RB after TreVeyon Henderson at RB6. We’ve seen Kyren Williams, Jase McClellan, Zach Evans, and Kendall Milton as other candidates to come off the board in the 2nd round of startups. This variance is Exhibit A of the aforementioned drop off.
Gray is our RB12, so an ADP at almost half of that feels like a reach. Gray has been a solid collegiate running back, but has yet to wow me. He can catch passes, but is not the most dynamic in space. Likewise, he can run between the tackles but not at a dominant level. Without one standout skill to hang his hat on, and a crowded backfield at Oklahoma, I do not expect Gray to be a big campus producer or a starter in the NFL.
Julian Fleming – Ohio State (WR16)
What are we supposed to do with Julian Fleming this offseason? That’s the dilemma for managers that used an early pick last offseason to snag the top overall wide receiver in the 2020 247 composite rankings. Life was never going to be easy for him at Ohio State, as the Buckeyes brought in fellow 5-star Jaxon Smith-Njigba and top 10 WR Gee Scott Jr. to compete with established guys like Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson. Fleming was certainly the most raw of the group, which showed in his limited snaps this year.
Olave shocked everyone by returning to Ohio State for 2021. That means 2 of the 3 starting spots in the offense are occupied. Luckily for him, the available spot is on the outside, where Fleming is projected to play. If Fleming disappoints, he may be jumped by Scott, Jameson Williams, or any of the highly ranked freshmen that OSU brings in this season. Our WR22, Fleming is coming in 6 spots higher than that in February’s ADP. More alarmingly, he is going earlier than players like Parker Washington, John Metchie, and Josh Downs. All three of those guys either have proven production or wide open opportunity entering 2021. We may be talking about Fleming as a bit of a bust by this time next year.
Carson Strong – Nevada (QB14)
There is a lot to like about Carson Strong. He has a big arm, he limits turnovers, and is generally efficient. Aside from his physical attributes, he also has the potential to produce in a big way in 2021. The MWC is not known for the team defenses. With the return of Romeo Doubs, Elijah Cooks, Tory Horton, and Cole Turner as pass catchers and most of the backfield still intact, Strong should be in line for a huge year. A big year may solidify his early draft stock too. We have Strong ranked as QB7 in our rankings, making him a bargain at current ADP.
Noah Cain – Penn State (RB33)
Some guys have a thing for blondes, I have a thing for Penn State running backs. The Nittany Lions repeatedly do a great job of developing athletes into NFL running backs, and Cain may be next in line. He was slated to carry the load for Penn State in 2020 before he suffered a foot injury on their third snap of the season.
Penn State does have other backs on the roster, like Keyvone Lee (52 ADP) and Caziah Holmes (N/A), which has likely affected that ADP to the point where Cain is a steal. I like him more than several backs going ahead of him, including George Holani, Trey Sanders, and Donovan Edwards. It seems like everyone else here at Campus2Canton would agree, reflected in his RB18 ranking. With current positional ADP 15 spots below that, I will be taking Cain in all of my startups this offseason.
SaRodorick Thompson – Texas Tech (RB69)
If you do not value winning on the college side of a C2C league, I can understand passing on SaRodorick Thompson. The Red Raider starting RB is likely nothing more than a late round flier in the NFL draft, mostly because his athleticism can be called “passable” at best. Beyond his athletic ability though, he is a smart runner with a good feel for the position and a capable pass catcher. His low YPR seems to confirm his low upside in that regard, however.
Thompson is our 48th ranked running back, and none of our rankers have Thompson as low as he is currently going in drafts. Drafting for upside lasts for a time, but he should be picked in the first 15 rounds in most C2C drafts. If you can get Thompson any lower than that, you should be happy.
Gary Bryant Jr. – USC (WR55)
USC’s offensive coordinator is Graham Harrell. For those too young to remember, Harrell is one of the all-time leading passers in NCAA history. He played on some decent Texas Tech teams when Mike Leach was still the head coach, and has taken Leach’s philosophy with him into coaching. That means high tempo passing attacks that lead to high scoring games. This is what makes the offensive weapons at USC so intriguing for fantasy purposes, and why you’ll see so many Trojans come off the board in these mocks.
Gary Bryant was a 4 star recruit in last year’s class. It was anticipated that he would sit for a year and then receive his chance once Tyler Vaughns and Amon-Ra St. Brown moved on. Bryant is currently drafted behind teammates Drake London and Bru McCoy. That is fair, as those two project more as traditional alphas in the NFL and have already produced in college. Bryant should be in line to produce this year though, as he is a perfect replacement for St. Brown’s role. He’s also going after players like Mycah Pittman, Jaylon Robinson, and D’Onte Thornton, which is much too cheap for the kind of upside he offers. We have him at WR48 in our rankings, and even that may seem low by midseason.
Michael Mayer – Notre Dame (TE2)
Mayer is coming off the board as TE2 or TE3 in every mock we run. It’s not his positional ADP that makes him a buy low, as Arik Gilbert is still an excellent prospect. Rather, it is the fact that he is going, on average, over 20 spots later than Gilbert that has grabbed my attention. Mayer faces no complications relating to his eligibility in 2021, nor are we guessing at potential landing spots. If Arik Gilbert takes the JUCO route, he may not be available to roster, depending on league settings. Perhaps the “safer” pick (I know that can be a bad word sometimes), but at a current ADP of 44, safer may be better.
Malik Willis – Liberty (QB30)
By now, everyone knows that Malik Willis is a serious CFF weapon. Willis finished as a top 5 QB in virtually all formats last season, due to his production through the air (2250 yards, 20 touchdowns) and on the ground (944 yards and 14 touchdowns). It would be a major shock to see him finish outside the top 5 in 2021.
The catch? Willis is simply not a good NFL prospect. While Willis has many of the tools you want out of a modern NFL quarterback (strong arm, mobile, extends the play well), he also lacks touch and accuracy in a major way. I have a hard time projecting significant development in that regard, which makes him a good deal at current ADP. We have him at QB31, so close enough!
For more of our thoughts on Malik Willis, check out Felix Sharpe’s article highlighting some current values at the QB position.
Tyler Allgeier – BYU (RB45)
Last offseason, a 5’10 200 running back with solid receiving chops went late in C2C drafts. He was overshadowed by his QB and in a backfield where he split touches, which lowered his value. And in 2020, that running back broke out in a big way.
No, I’m not talking about UNC’s Javonte Williams, I’m referring to BYU’s Tyler Allgeier. The former walk-on linebacker impressed last season, both on a per-touch basis (7.5 yards per carry, 12.4 per reception) and overall (1300 yards and 13 touchdowns). He’s a good mover for his size with solid wiggle, good power, and a well-rounded skill set that the NFL covets. With Zach Wilson moving on, Allgeier should carry more of the load in 2021. We have him as RB40, so his positional ADP is almost spot-on.
Parker Washington – Penn State (WR19)
A versatile receiver with solid size (5’10, 205), Washington got a ton of buzz in preseason camp last year and then delivered once the season finally rolled around, finishing as the second leading receiver on the team as a true freshman. Even more impressive was his ability to succeed in a COVID season with subpar quarterback play. If Penn State can figure out their QB situation this year, the sky’s the limit.
We have Parker Washington ranked as WR19, so this is another case where our rank matches perfectly with the positional ADP. Even better, you can snag him at the end of the fifth round on average (ADP of 59). This could look conservative if he performs well again in 2021, but right now he remains a nice but fair value.