NFL Rookie Mock Draft: Comparing the 2019 Draft Class to 2018 & 2017

This article is a collaboration of 5 dynasty/devy writers for the Fantasy Fanalysts. All of the writers also contribute to the 48 Report.

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We decided to get wild this week for Mock Draft Monday and have conducted a draft where we compare the value of the 2019 draft class to the prospects from the past two draft classes.

For the purposes of this draft, each team drafted snake style and for a SuperFlex & TE premium league. Each roster has 2 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 2 TE, & 2 FLEX spots. Each writer could only draft players from the 2019, 2018, & 2017 draft classes. We provided a round by round breakdown of the picks. You can see the full draft board below:

2N’Keal HarryJames
Joe MixonDerrius
Smith Jr.

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Round 1: 2019 is Overshadowed by Superstars

1.01- Saquon Barkley

1.02- Pat Mahomes

1.03- Christian McCaffery

1.04- Alvin Kamara

1.05- Juju Smith-Schuster

This can be chalked up to hindsight being 20/20 and an incredibly talented set of draft classes for comparison, but the 2019 prospects were not close to being considered amongst this talented group. Barkley and Mahomes are the clear top picks for most superflex players and McCaffery and Kamara are a pair of high impact and consistent running backs in an otherwise shallow position for fantasy football players. Smith-Schuster is a bit of a surprise pick here, but with Brown likely out of town the very young player has a lot of upside to grow into.

Matt Hicks

Round 2: The First 2019 Prospect Sighting

2.01 – Deshaun Watson

2.02 – Derrius Guice

2.03 – Joe Mixon

2.04 – James Conner

2.05 – N’Keal Harry

I consider Watson the 2nd best QB of the available group behind Pat Mahomes. I may be higher on him than most so I would have been interested to see if he would’ve made it back to me but in a superflex, I decided against the risk.

Guice should slot right in as the Redskins starter but I hope his hype doesn’t get out of control. Mixon had a breakout year and could be primed for an even bigger 2019 with the Bengals making some promising changes to the coaching staff.

Conner is a stud and it was between him, Juju and Watson for me at the turn. I may not have taken him but he will be a major stud again in 2019.

We have our first 2019 rookie off the board with Josh taking N’Keal Harry and I am totally fine with it. After the combine Harry had, you can definitely make the argument he should be the 1.01.

Eric Adams

Round 3: 5 More Players Greater than the 1.01

3.01 – Baker Mayfield

3.02 – Kenny Golladay

3.03 – Dalvin Cook

3.04 – Mitchell Trubisky

3.05 – Sony Michel

This is a very talented group of players!  Being that it is superflex and there isn’t a huge pool of established starters, I am completely fine with Baker going before the likes of Dalvin Cook.  

Golladay and Cook have both shown that they have the talent and ability to produce at the NFL level. Trubisky showed solid production in his first season in Matt Nagy’s offense and with a lot of new offensive playmakers.

Finally, I really liked Michel’s usage and production in the last portion of the season and throughout the playoffs. I fully expect all of these players to continue to develop and live up to their draft position. When comparing these guys to the 2019 rookies, I think I would rather have all of these guys more than the 1.01

Mike Colaianne

Round 4: The Rookie Wide Receivers Emerge

4.01 Lamar Jackson

4.02 Kelvin Harmon

4.03 George Kittle

4.04 DK Metcalf

4.05 Kerryon Johnson

An interesting round in this interesting draft and the first round that the 2019 class starts to get taken.  I jumped on Harry myself much earlier, but this is the right range for guys like Harmon and Metcalf. Both of these guys are going to be starters at the next level and it looks like they will be darn good ones too.  

I was thrilled to steal Kerryon at the end of this 4th round with the 20th overall pick. He is poised to take on the workhorse role in Detroit and finished last year strong as he started to get fed more touches.

This is a little early for Lamar Jackson for my taste, but I understand the allure of the rushing upside (and floor).  Kittle is a big-time value here as each of us is filling out our rosters with 2 tight ends and getting the best tight end available with your 4th pick feels like a steal.

Josh Padgett 

Round 5: (2018) Quarterback Fever

5.01 Josh Rosen

5.02 Josh Allen

5.03 Nick Chubb

5.04 Sam Darnold

5.05 Phillip Lindsay

This round was interesting. It boasted the most QBs of any round with 3/5 picks being Josh Rosen, Sam Darnold and Josh Allen. Each team choosing was drafting that 2nd QB before resources dried up and rightfully so. The only QBs drafted after this point, were the top two rookie QBs: Drew Lock and Kyler Murray. While the rookies coming in are no laughing matter, the established sophomores from the last class would all be drafted before the guys coming in.

This year’s draft is viewed as a weaker class in terms of QBs and maybe (longterm) only a few guys would could be a franchise’s answer. With the 2018 class, every QB taken in the early rounds is seen to be the team’s answer and had the most QBs taken (4) with only Mason Rudolph being left out.  

Christopher Nelson

Round 6: Fant > Engram?

6.01 – Noah Fant

6.02 – Evan Engram

6.03 – Corey Davis

6.04 – Tarik Cohen

6.05 – Courtland Sutton

I went with the upside of Fant over a sure thing in Engram. I think Fant has a chance to enter the elite tier of tight ends in the NFL and I wanted to go with some flash plus I love his game. Matt followed suit by taking Engram and I am fine with it but I still have some concerns over his usage in the Giants’ system.

I literally can’t say any nice things about Corey Davis. I want to like him but he is just too inconsistent. I’m hoping the Titans can get more out of him but he’s at a crossroads at the moment. LOVE Tarik Cohen here in the 6th round. With the Bears reportedly looking to trade Jordan Howard, Cohen could become even more valuable and he flourished in Matt Nagy’s system in 2018.

I need to see more consistency from Sutton. I love his game but he had his rookie struggles. I could see him making a nice year 2 jump but having Flacco as a QB doesn’t exactly make me feel all warm inside.

Eric Adams

Round 7: The First 2019 RB Off the Board

7.01 – David Montgomery

7.02 – Adam Shaheen

7.03 – Mike Williams

7.04 – OJ Howard

7.05 – Cooper Kupp

I was pretty surprised to see so much talent this late in the draft.  David Montgomery is my RB1 in this 2019 class and I probably prefer him over the rest of the guys in this round.  Shaheen seems like a bit of a reach, considering Howard and Njoku were still available, but there is no doubt that Shaheen has potential with his size and athleticism.  

Mike Williams is a huge buy for me this year due to his continued growth and Tyrell Williams being a free agent. I know Bruce Arians hasn’t really used his TEs in the past, but OJ is special and can hop up into the elite tier of TEs as soon as this season.  Coming off a torn ACL, Kupp looks to continue being the Ram’s possession receiver and produce as a low end WR 2.

Mike Colaianne

Round 8: 2019 Showing Up Late

8.01 TJ Hockenson

8.02 Hakeem Butler

8.03 Kyler Murray

8.04 Mike Gesicki

8.05 Leonard Fournette

Hockenson is a steal here in my opinion. As the 6th tight end of the board. Currently, he is a first round rookie pick on my board. With a good situation, he could easily jump Howard, Shaheen, Engram and even Fant who all went above him in this draft. I am not the biggest Butler fan in our crew, but I understand the value here.

This is the right spot for Murray considering the potential and the fact that he should start very early in his NFL career.  Gesicki is a reach with Njoku still on the board, but the upside is great especially if the Dolphins bring in a rookie QB who will need a security blanket. I considered Fournette with both of my 6th and 7th round picks (6.10 and 7.01). Then I watched him fall all the way to the 40th overall pick. I understand the concerns, but the talent is still immense and the offense is geared towards him in a big way.

There is not a quarterback that the Jaguars can go get that would make them lighten the load for Fournette. Will his star burn out quickly? Probably, but it is going to burn real bright until it does.

Josh Padgett 

Round 9: Running Back…to the Future?

9.01 David Njoku

9.02 Chris Carson

9.03 Drew Lock

9.04 Rodney Anderson

9.05 Kareem Hunt

This is a very eclectic group of players. Njoku is a huge value here in a 2 TE/TE premium format, especially with Cleveland’s offense trending in a positive direction. I think Drew Lock deserves to come off the board here and I’m glad he was valued enough to be on a super flex roster.

That leaves 3 running backs, of which I favor the future. Carson had a solid 2018 season, but with Penny looming I wouldn’t have taken him. Hunt has a significant amount of unknown variable (including impending suspension) and I don’t want that baggage on my fantasy football roster-especially at the running back position. I would LOVE to have Anderson, my RB1, on all of my rosters though. He’s explosive, has huge upside, and if he didn’t have an injury history would be far and away the consensus RB1 in this draft class. For once in this draft: I’ll give 2019 the advantage.

Matt Hicks

Round 10: Plenty of Talent Left

10.1 Calvin Ridley

10.2 D.J. Moore

10.3 Irv Smith Jr.

10.4 Chris Godwin

10.5 Dallas Goedert

For it being the last round, there was no grasping at straws. To be honest, there was still a lot of talent left over, but some teams had to fill needs vs grabbing a flex. Besides maybe the tight ends (who generally take a little while to develop), everyone chosen is slated to take a step forward this coming season with pretty good ceilings.

Ridley and Godwin will have to split reps with Evans and Julio but should still continue to see serviceable market share. DJ Moore, on the other hand, could be in for the biggest boost of them all. With Olsen possibly retiring and Funchess moving on, Moore could very well move into WR1 land.  

Christopher Nelson

Published by

Matt Hicks

Matt’s writing is focused on dynasty and devy fantasy football. He loves blending his experience writing research in the field of education with fantasy football stats. Matt currently lives in Baltimore, MD and graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. You can follow Matt on Twitter: @TheFF_Educator

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