Welcome to the sixth installment of the 2019 Devy Weekly series! If you’ve been following along, we’ve been covering top college football players who recently helped their case for a shot at an NFL future. And we’re back at it again! We’ll break this down by position, giving you players to target in all areas of need for your dynasty rosters.
If you’re new to Devy Leagues, the long and short of it is this: You get to draft college football players and roster them long before they are drafted to an NFL roster.
Some of these players will be names that you recognize. Others might be the kind of player you didn’t know until yesterday. Regardless, the point is to provide you with some names to tuck away for draft day or give you potential trade targets in your leagues.
There were so many players that lit it up in Week 5 of college football! It certainly makes it tough to pick which players to highlight, but just like last week and every week here are seven players who absolutely dominated their respective games.
Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama
At this point there aren’t too many people unfamiliar with the man, the myth, the legend, Tua Tagovailoa. And there are probably even fewer people that actually root for Alabama football. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t still wax poetic about his dominance in the seven touchdown performance against Ole Miss this past weekend.
Tagovailoa hit Devonta Smith for five touchdowns in the game, four in the first half (breaking all-time SEC records). But that wasn’t enough. Tua ended up breaking the school record for most passing touchdowns in a game (with six). And then of course he added a touchdown on the ground just for good measure. He threw for over 400 yards for the second time this season. And he did so on just 26 completions! Through five games his raw stats are pretty much the most ridiculous thing ever:
113 for 148 (76%), 1718 yards, 23 touchdowns, ZERO interceptions
And perhaps the craziest part of it all is that the stats could be even better, but he’s left each game early as Alabama wraps up their weekly annihilation.
Obviously it helps that he has incredible talent around him, at receiver and offensive line. However, they doesn’t change the fact that Tua is looking like the best college passer in the history of the game. At the very least he’s looking just as good or better than any quarterback to recently enter the draft. Don’t believe me? Let’s just compare his 2019 to the final seasons for Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray (last two first overall NFL Draft picks).
|Final Season Numbers||Kyler Murray||Baker Mayfield||Tua Tagovailoa (Thru 5 Games)|
|Pass Comp %||69.00%||70.50%||76.40%|
|Pass TD %||11.10%||10.60%||15.50%|
The only area where Tagovailoa doesn’t profile as a dominant force is as a rusher like Murray (or even Mayfield). His passing stats are essentially unparalleled in all of college football history to date, and that likely only continues. Whenever, however, by whatever means necessary, acquire Tua in all your leagues and log out. You won’t regret it.
First off, Chuba Hubbard ran for another 200-plus yards and water is still indeed wet. We could talk about him every week, but we have to cover some other talented options here too.
Salvon Ahmed, Washington
Sometimes college coaches are stubborn when it comes to starting the better, younger players on their rosters. Salvon Ahmed’s situation is a great example of this. Don’t get me wrong. Myles Gaskin was a solid college player who compiled some impressive stats for the Washington Huskies. But Ahmed is showing this season that he’s always been on another level.
He didn’t have to do much against Eastern Washington in Week 1, but Ahmed racked up 125 yards from scrimmage against California and should have frankly seen more work in what should have been a victory for the Huskies. Ahmed was averaging over ten yards per carry against Hawaii the week after that, but went down with a leg injury and had to miss a game and a half.
But this past weekend, even at less than 100% (coming off that injury), Ahmed destroyed USC for 159 yards from scrimmage on just 18 touches. A good portion of those yards came on his 89-yard rushing touchdown that essentially sealed the victory for Washington in the third quarter. However, Ahmed consistently cranked out positive yards (only one negative yardage carry), and actually lost over 20 additional yards due to penalties away from a couple solid runs.
Ahmed ran a legit 4.32 forty in high school. His burst and agility scores as a 17-year-old would have measured as above average for an NFL prospect as well. If he stays healthy Ahmed will be drafted in the middle rounds one day.
King Doerue, Purdue
Not only does King Doerue have an incredible name, he’s got some skills to back it up. A three-star recruit, Doerue wasn’t supposed a see a ton of action in his first collegiate season. However, thanks to a bevy of injured and uninspiring Boilermaker running backs Doerue found his first real opportunity last week against Minnesota. He took full advantage with an impressive three-touchdown performance!
Check out some highlights that I put together from his lead back debut:
So WR Rondale Moore & QB Elijah Sindelar were hurt on the same play for #Purdue this weekend, but the silver lining was the incredible performance of true freshman RB, King Doerue! Check him out! #BoilerUp #Devy #CFB #CollegeFootball pic.twitter.com/QczB7nvBpV— Travis May (@FF_TravisM) September 30, 2019
Doerue racked up 126 yards from scrimmage on his 24 touches and just refused to go down.
Doerue played in a heavily option-run based offense in high school, so for him to convert to a more typical running back role this quickly is impressive. He’s shown incredible ball skills, pass blocking ability, and vision. And now if he keeps his touch pace up Doerue might post one of the highest backfield dominator ratings in the nation. Keep an eye on the new King from Purdue as the season progresses.
CeeDee Lamb, Oklahoma
Lamb had scored a touchdown in every game coming into last weekend for the Sooners, but hadn’t given us that singular explosion that we all knew he was capable of until Saturday versus Texas Tech. Lamb grabbed seven receptions for 185 yards and three scores in the absolute destruction of the Red Raiders. And with that, Lamb’s Adjusted Production Index score is now going to be off the charts!
Coming into this season Lamb had already posted decent Adjusted Production Index numbers indicative of him being a future NFL hit. However, let’s look at his drastic improvement now that he doesn’t have to compete with Marquise “Hollywood” Brown for targets:
|Season||Adjusted Dominator||Adjusted Yards Per Team Pass Attempt||Adjusted Touchdowns Per Team Pass Attempt||Adjusted Production Index Percentile|
If you’re unfamiliar with these metrics, they’re some of the most predictive of both future NFL draft capital and production in existence combined into one metric: the Adjusted Production Index. Lamb’s touchdown numbers likely come down after he stops scoring a touchdown and a half per game (if he does), but right now he’s in rare company with peak production. Given his physical profile, implied draft capital, and production profile, right now his closest comp among all players drafted from 2005 to now is Calvin Johnson. I’m not saying that’s who he plays like, but that’s the elite company his profile is currently keeping. If Lamb goes round one next spring he’s going to be a top prospect.
Devonta Smith, Alabama
Who leads the Alabama Sooners in yards and touchdowns? Is it Jerry Jeudy? Henry Ruggs III? Nope. It’s Devonta Smith.
In case you were living under a rock last weekend (or you didn’t read the first part of this article), Smith snagged 11 receptions for 274 receiving yards and not one, not two, not three, not four, but five touchdowns against Ole Miss. And yes, that performance absolutely destroyed Alabama single game records: most yards, most touchdowns. His four touchdowns in the first half were also an SEC record. Smith had an okay Saturday.
Smith has always been known for his National Championship-winning catch from Tua Tagovailoa a couple years ago. Now he should probably be known as a legit NFL prospect that people need to pay more attention to. Smith will likely cool off some, but his production metrics (given the depth around him) are definitely impressive and would be much better if he played for virtually any other school. If he’s the one Alabama receiver not currently on a roster in your league already make sure you change that in the near future.
Cheyenne O’Grady, Arkansas
To the surprise of absolutely no one the Arkansas Razorbacks are still pretty bad at football this year. However, they actually have a few interesting skill position players and Cheyenne (C.J.) O’Grady is most certainly one of them. Like most college tight ends he hasn’t put up ridiculous numbers throughout his entire career, but he’s shown promise.
He actually led the Razorbacks in receptions and yards (eight for 91 yards) this past weekend in a tough bout against the Texas A&M Aggies. And this wasn’t just out of nowhere. O’Grady caught 30 balls for 400 yards and six touchdowns just a year ago. Now he’s looking to improve on that line. At 6 feet 4 inches and 260 pounds, O’Grady actually may profile as more of a blocking tight end, but should be able to earn snaps early on an NFL roster somewhere next year.
IDP (Individual Defensive Player)
Jeffrey Okudah, Ohio State (Cornerback)
We don’t typically talk about cornerbacks when it comes to IDP fantasy football, but Okudah is an exception. Okudah grabbed his second and third interceptions of the season against Nebraska this season and figures to be the undisputed CB1 in the 2020 NFL Draft. He was already the best athlete in his entire cornerback recruiting class years ago, but now he’s shown the technical skills to turn that into elite NFL talent.
Okudah posted a 4.49 forty, a 4.03-second short shuttle, and a 42-inch vertical in high school. If he gets top end draft capital Okudah will be one of the safest IDP adds in start-CB leagues. Plus he likely has the athleticism to excel in a more tackle-heavy slot CB role as well.
I hope you enjoyed the sixth Devy Weekly of 2019! Expect more future NFL prospect coverage throughout the season. Find me @FF_TravisM on Twitter if you have any questions. And until next time, keep living that Dynasty Life!