Fantasy football is a game of finding inefficiencies in the market. Armed with the MFL10 ADP app, we have the visual means to help us find the players who have the best chance at beating the market and paying off at their current cost in MFL10 best ball drafts.As part of an ongoing series, we’re counting down the best values in each round.
You can find the previous values by round here:
The fourth is is flush with value and one of my favorite rounds to load up on underappreciated fantasy forces.
While it may be contentious, I believe there’s a case to be made that Alex Collins belongs in the second tier of running backs with the likes of Jerick McKinnon and Jordan Howard. He certainly deserves to be drafted ahead of Joe Mixon and Derrick Henry, but that’s not what’s happening so far.
Mixon has been a fixture at the end of the second round for months, but why is he so much more expensive than Collins? Let’s look at how the pair fared last season.
- More carries.
- More rushing yards.
- More TDs.
- A yards-per-carry mark that was a full yard better than Mixon’s.
- More expected points.
- Far better efficiency.
- More fantasy points.
The only area where Mixon was slightly better was in the passing game. However, the big caveat there is that the Ravens didn’t realize what they had in Collins as a pass catcher until Week 8. He had zero receptions up until then, and if we look at their numbers from Week 8 on, it was Collins who was the busier back in both phases.
There is also the matter of the pace of their respective offenses. Cincinnati ran the fewest plays in the NFL last season, while Baltimore ran the ninth most. Baltimore will almost certainly be a better team than the Bengals in 2018 and have more leads to milk, as well. That means a healthy dose of the run game.
This isn’t to bash Mixon … okay, it is. He’s an awful pick in Round 2, and you should stop taking him at that price.
But it’s mostly about Collins and the incredible value he presents as a workhorse back on a high-paced offense in 2018. I’ll be beating his drum all summer long.
Starting in 2015, Brandin Cooks has finished as the WR13, WR10, and WR15 over the past three seasons. Yet, after being traded to the league’s third-highest scoring offense, Cooks is now being drafted as the WR18, behind several guys he outscored last season.
The narrative goes that Cooks now has more competition for targets, not only from fellow WRs Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp, but also from one of the best pass-catching backs in the game, Todd Gurley.
To that, I ask — is it really a competition? In his worst year since 2015, Cooks still had more more points, more expected points, and better efficiency than Woods and Kupp had in their best years.
Maybe the Rams spread it around more in 2018. However, that’s exactly what the New England offense is known for, and Cooks still finished as the WR15 last year, despite competing for targets with the most dominant TE of all time.
It could also be argued that the Rams’ offense is more valuable for WRs than New England’s, putting up more yards, points, and expected points as a group in 2017.
Cooks has been about as bankable as they come on a per-game basis, consistently keeping his fantasy owners in games.
Even in a “down” 2017, Cooks was still among the elite is almost every measurable metric, including air yards and weighted opportunity.
To a certain degree, I get why people are shying away from Cooks, but letting him fall to the fifth round is just too much. A proven producer on one of the NFL’s best offenses, he’s a great bet to outproduce his price in 2018.