During this 8-part divisional series, I utilize the ADP from the RedZone 96 league startup drafts to determine 2 guys, I am buying, 2 I’m selling, and my flyer off each team.  Buying and selling have nothing to do with my opinion of the player and everything to do with my perceived value of the player vs. ADP.

Part 4: AFC West

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DENVER, CO – DECEMBER 31: Running back Kareem Hunt #27 of the Kansas City Chiefs breaks away for a first quarter touchdown run against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 31, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

Kansas City Chiefs 

Two players, I am buying;

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Kareem Hunt – Overall ADP 12 RB 7

Man, I thought trying to find two players to buy on the Buffalo Bills was hard.  The Chiefs are hard on both the buy and the sell sides.  When it comes to Kareem Hunt I flipped him from my buy list to my sell list and back and forth multiple times.  I finally settled on Kareem as a buy.  He is a great talent in a talented offense.  Last season’s leading rusher has apparently been working on increasing his ability to catch balls out of the backfield.  Hunt has top 5 RB upside for this year and beyond, making him a buy for me at this value.

Sammy Watkins – Overall ADP 48 WR 23

The value here is about right.  Sammy Watkins, in my opinion, has always had the talent to be a top 24 WR.  He has been limited by injury, QB ability and time in the system.  If Patrick Mahomes is as advertised, Sammy should be able to take advantage of his health and the entire offseason in KC. to return this ADP value.

Two players, I’m selling;

Patrick Mahomes – Overall ADP 109 QB 9

It’s very difficult finding players to sell in this offense.  Patrick Mahomes is an unproven first time starting QB this season and for that reason, I am selling at the 9th QB spot.  Certainly, Mahomes has the pedigree to be a top-level talent in this league, and I could be selling a potential top 5 QB.  I’m targeting Mahomes in my drafts, but at a lower price.  There are few QB’s I would prefer here.  One example is Jameis Winston (QB12).  Preferring Winston at 12 over Mahomes at 9 that makes Mahomes a sell for me.

Tyreek Hill – Overall ADP 22 WR 10

Another tough decision.  This is solely based on the ADP, I am a big Tyreek Hill fan.  I feel the uncertainty with Mahomes in his first season and the addition of Watkins likely pushes Hill out of the top 10 and down the rankings list.  He’s a reluctant sell for me as at WR 10 there is value there.

Take the flyer;

Chris Conley – Overall ADP 309 WR 133

If Conley can come back from his season-ending Achilles injury and be close to 100%, then I love him at this value.  He finished 2016 with 44 receptions for 530 yards.  He has the upside to produce in this deep offense and as a result, I am all over him as the 133rd WR off the board. 

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CARSON, CA – DECEMBER 31: Melvin Gordon #28 of the Los Angeles Chargers breaks the tackle from Nicholas Morrow #50 of the Oakland Raiders during the game at StubHub Center on December 31, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Los Angeles Chargers 

Two players, I am buying;

Austin Ekeler – Overall ADP 190 RB 61

On the surface, Austin Ekeler’s numbers don’t really wow anyone.  47 carries and 27 receptions last season are decent but they are not I gotta buy this guy sort of numbers.  I feel that Ekeler will be a benefactor from the Hunter Henry injury, and I also think he starts to eat into Melvin Gordan’s workload carrying the ball.  I like Ekeler at this RB5 price, it’s a range that offers a decent return on investment.

Tyrell Williams – Overall ADP 185 WR 79

Tyrell Williams had a good opportunity to take a step forward last season and he didn’t really deliver.  This season Williams gets another opportunity to deliver and improve on his 43/728/4 season of a year ago. I am not sure he improves on his 2017 numbers but I am confident that he delivers a similar return.  Williams was the 39th WR in scoring last season, and I believe that he will be a top 50 WR for a few more years.  Coming off the board at WR79, I’ll buy that.

Two players, I’m selling;

Melvin Gordon – Overall ADP 21 RB 12

Melvin Gordon has averaged 924 rushing yards and an additional 362 receiving yards over his first three seasons in the NFL.  Gordon finished 2016 at RB7, & 2017 at RB5.  Selling Gordon at this value seems crazy, but this is a gut feeling.  I’m not sure I can remember an RB that produces so well and yet looks so average.  Gordon relies on volume to reach these lofty numbers.  I can see him getting increased targets this year, but I see his rushing touches start to decline.  Gordon has never achieved 4.0 yards per carry and the volume of his workload is directly linked to his overall production.  I don’t see Gordon in the top 12 this year and beyond, so he’s a rather easy sell for me here.

Mike Williams – Overall ADP 81 WR 38

This one could be a mistake.  I am not sure what we have here, to be honest.  Virtually a lost season due to injury in his rookie year, Williams will look to prove he was worthy of the 7th overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.  All offseason reports indicate that he is looking good in offseason activities.  This is a gut feel and a hunch but I am selling at this ADP.  

Take the flyer;

Justin Jackson – Overall ADP 204 RB 66

The Chargers selected Justin Jackson with the No. 251 overall pick in this year’s draft.  Jackson ran for over 1,000 yards in all four seasons in college.  He posted a career 1,142/5,440/41 rushing line with 4.8 yards per carry and 122 receptions. Jackson showed well at the combine and has all the tools to step in as the RB1 for the Chargers should there be an injury to Gordon.  Regardless I feel Jackson gets more workload this year than anticipated.  At RB66 I’m taking the chance. 

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OAKLAND, CA – OCTOBER 19: Amari Cooper #89 of the Oakland Raiders runs after a catch against the Kansas City Chiefs during their NFL game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on October 19, 2017 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Oakland Raiders

Two players, I am buying;

Doug Martin – Overall ADP 208 RB 69

The Oakland Raiders are another team that doesn’t make you feel all that good about when it comes to buying, but hey there has to be some value here somewhere doesn’t there?  Doug Martin finds himself in Oakland this season after a roller-coaster of a career in Tampa Bay.  Martin is coming off a season which saw him serve a suspension and rush for 406 yards on 138 carries.  2016 wasn’t much better.  You have to go back to the 2015 season where Martin put up 288/1402 to be even remotely interested in this RB.  Doug Martin lands on the buy side here as a result of how I feel about Marshawn Lynch and less about how I feel about Martin.  I do not see Lynch being much of anything other than a guy this season and beyond.  Martin doesn’t have to do that much to deliver on RB69 value, and I am betting he gets enough of an opportunity this season to deliver you a positive return.

Jared Cook – Overall ADP 269 TE 35

With the recent news of Martavius Bryant and his likely suspension, I find myself oddly interested in Jared Cook.  Cook at times last year looked capable of being a legit TE in this league, and quietly ended up as TE12.  This is likely a one season flyer of a buy here.  Cook will continue to put up numbers based on volume.  I envision a scenario where the Raiders become a little more run heavy and attempt to go on time eating drives that feature short passes.  The team is down to one real WR, and the defense looks suspect at best.  Cook should deliver better than this ADP this season.  If you are the Cook owner and are not in a position to win this season, sell him mid-season to a team that might be. 

Two players, I’m selling;

Amari Cooper – Overall ADP 19 WR9

The player most impacted in a negative way for the Raiders by the Martvius Bryant, in my opinion, is Amari Cooper.  Until the Raiders upgrade their receiving core, this won’t change.  Cooper is going to see the best corner of his opposition and more double teams than he has likely seen before.  I believe that the Raiders run more now, and Cooper will need to make catches in traffic and take more hits as a result.  Cooper is a great talent, and I was really looking forward to this season for him.  In light of the Bryant situation, Cooper became a no-brainer sell for me at this ADP. 

Marshawn Lynch – Overall ADP 151 RB 49

I really would prefer to not sound all negative here regarding Lynch, but it’s hard.  His return last season made little sense to me and even less sense for the Raiders.  He was limited last season in terms of touches due to age and conditioning yet still managed to finish at RB24.  Add a year onto that body in an offense that looks to be a mess, and I cannot see any way that Lynch is close to that number let alone this ADP.  Doug Martin wasn’t brought in to feed this man skittles.  Martin will eat away at the workload of Lynch.  Jalen Richard and Dwayne Washington are also still around to make this backfield even less attractive.  I’m selling here with confidence. 

Take the flyer;

Marcell Ateman – Overall ADP 304 WR 129

Ateman was selected with the 228th overall pick in the recent NFL draft by the Raiders.  Ateman has good size and put up decent numbers with Oklahoma State last season (59/1156/8).  Ateman may have a role in the offense now considering the Bryant situation.  I am not overly excited about him but at this value, he’s certainly worth a shot.

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CINCINNATI, OH – OCTOBER 21: Courtland Sutton #16 of the Southern Methodist Mustangs runs the ball after a reception during the game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Nippert Stadium on October 21, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

Denver Broncos 

Two players, I am buying;

Courtland Sutton – Overall ADP 71 WR 33

Selected with the 40th overall pick by the Broncos in the 2018 NFL Draft, Sutton will likely be the Broncos WR3 this season, Sutton will likely not return this ADP value this season and perhaps even next.  I do see Sutton having the talent and the opportunity to be a good long-term buy. 

Royce Freeman – Overall ADP 59 RB 25

Freeman comes to the Broncos after starting for 4 seasons in Oregon.  He showed the ability to run and catch passes out of the backfield in college. Freeman will get his shot this season running behind Devante Booker to start the season.  I see Freeman gaining more and more of the workload as the season progresses.  This is a buy that will return its value in the coming years.

Two players, I’m selling;

Devontae Booker – Overall ADP 138 RB 46

Booker has been the next one for a few years now in Denver.  He was slowed at times by injury as well as the crowed backfield he found himself a part of.  Gone are C.J. Anderson and Jamal Charles, paving the way for Booker to grab the RB1 role.  As the season progresses I do see rookie Royce Freeman start to push Booker and perhaps surpass Booker on the depth chart.  Booker holds value at this ADP for now, but I anticipate his stock to decline and thus he’s a sell for me.  

Case Keenum – Overall ADP 234 QB 30

Case broke out last year. A career 2nd/3rd string QB with little to get excited about burst onto the scene in Minnesota.  Case put up a 3547/22/7 season with a 67.6% completion percentage and a QB rating of 98.3.  Clearly, these numbers were the best of his career.  Case now finds himself leading an offense that is arguably less talented at all positions vs. what he had a year ago.  His job as the starter barring injury is safe for this season and perhaps next.  With that being said I do not see 2017 Case Keenum here at all and I see more of a 2016 Case Keenum, (2201/9/11/60.9%/76.4).  As the 30th QB off the board, he’s an easy sell for me.

Take the flyer;

Jake Butt – Overall ADP 230 TE 32

There is a battle for the starting TE job in Denver this season.  I would anticipate that Jake Butt wins that battle and as a result becomes a flyer for me at this stage in the draft.  Case Keenum is the starting QB and has shown he likes to target the TE.  If Butt can grab a hold of this role, I believe he’s a good value at this spot.

 

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