Fantasy drafts are finally here! It’s been a rough preseason with injuries piling up and some players falling down draft boards as opportunity disappears before their eyes. But one player’s misfortunate is another man’s gain, and the draft board can change a lot from August until your Labor Day weekend draft. Let’s take a look at five names rocketing up the PPR ranks.
RB Royce Freeman DEN (ADP 3.08)
Freeman was not the most exciting name when the NFL Draft concluded in April, but a number of injuries and circumstances have turned fantasy owners attention his direction and now Freeman is nearing the top 30. At times this preseason, Freeman has looked dynamic as both a runner and as a receiver, but he’s still splitting series with Devontae Booker, a known longtime favorite of the Denver coaching staff. There have been rumors of Freeman as a bell-cow runner. They may need to be right for Freeman to be worth the new price tag.
WR Chris Hogan NE (ADP 4.08)
Hogan is up a full round in the past month as fantasy owners begin to realize just how barren the New England receiving corps is. Julian Edelman is suspended the first four games and still returning from his knee injury. Kenny Britt got cut. Eric Decker retired. Philip Dorsett isn’t exactly making anyone forget Randy Moss. All of that leaves Rob Gronkowski and Chris Hogan, who has established himself as a big redzone target. But Hogan’s career high is 41 receptions. Is he really going to break out at age 30?
WR Marquise Goodwin SF (ADP 4.12)
There may be no higher riser in fantasy football than Marquise Goodwin. Goodwin began the month as just a 9th round pick and he’s risen one round a week and is now sneaking into the 4th round in drafts. That’s a shocking price increase, but Goodwin appears to have established himself as the clear go-to receiver for Jimmy Garoppolo in Kyle Shanahan’s high-powered offense. Now he’s your fourth or fifth pick and your second receiver. Can he live up to the hype?
TE Trey Burton CHI (ADP 6.06)
Burton is this year’s tight end sleeper du jour, surpassing the fast-rising David Njoku and shooting up draft boards. Burton was going at the tail end of the 8th round just two weeks ago before flashing his huge potential in preseason. Burton is flexing his muscles and moving all over the field. He could be rookie Chicago coach Matt Nagy’s new Travis Kelce. But now he’s being drafted as the #6 TE, which might be about his peak value. Be careful.
WR Mike Williams LAC (ADP 9.08)
Williams is one late sleeper that is making a late push up draft boards, rising two rounds since the start of August. Williams was a top-10 pick a year ago but had a lost rookie season thanks to an injury he never quite recovered from. Now he looks healthy, and he could be the de facto tight end in the redzone with both Hunter Henry and Antonio Gates missing. All that makes Williams an intriguing pickup, and a Keenan Allen injury could send his value through the roof.