FANTASY: Sticking to my plan during draft before a gem landed in my lap

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (26) acknowledges fans during an NFL scrimmage at the Steelers training camp in Latrobe, PA, on Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Bell is going to miss the first three games because of a suspension or there wouldn't have been any way I could draft him in Round 2. It gives my running backs in my first two picks, but when they are Adrian Peterson and Le'Veon Bell, you make exceptions. (AP Photo)

Practice what you preach. This was the overwhelming thought in my head as the ninth pick went off the board in my 14-team full-point PPR draft on Sunday.

There I was with the 10th pick and had options of running backs David Johnson, Adrian Peterson and Lamar Miller or receivers Jordy Nelson, Keenan Allen and Dez Bryant, or tight end Rob Gronkowski, or even quarterback Cam Newton.

Practice what you preach. I preached in a column a week ago that Adrian Peterson was still the top running back in fantasy, regardless how many others think the mantel has been passed to Todd Gurley or David Johnson.

So, as I stepped up to grab my sticker, the choice was clear: "The Last Action Heroes (that is my team in this league, you will get to know the name) choose Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson.

The owner after me sprinted to the board to draft Johnson to basically try and show that I made an unwise decision.

Maybe, but in the first round I do not want to take any risks. Adrian Peterson is low risk and high reward. Both Johnson and Gurley are entering their second seasons and no one really knows how they will do.

I grabbed Peterson and thought, "Pencil me in for 1,500 yards and 7-10 touchdowns."

That works for a first pick. Of course I may rue that decision in a PPR league as Johnson is big with the catches too, but I felt good about the pick.


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In the second round, I had another welcome dilemma - very welcome. I am sitting there with the 19th pick of the draft and Le'Veon Bell is out there. This would mean two running backs in a PPR, but I don't even allow myself to second guess it, and immediately grab the player many thought would've been the No. 1 pick if not for a three-game suspension.

So now I need to really rally with receivers because it is slim pickings by the time I pick again at No. 38. I am hoping Randall Cobb lands to me, but he is taken the pick before mine, so I decide to go with potential breakout in Indianapolis Colts, Donte Moncrief.

The draft continues and I pick again at 47. Now, in this league we feature tight ends and wide receivers as the same position and call for three WR/TE. That is important because in leagues where a tight end is used, I would never have been able to draft this player. But in our league, once Gronkowski is taken (2nd round, No. 16) many owners kind forget about the position.

I was so happy to draft Washington Redskins tight end Jordan Reed, who is basically the No. 1 receiver for that team. If my team goes places this year, it will be because of that pick.

Reed is someone I really wanted. The other player I had circled, starred and highlighted was Jacksonville quarterback Blake Bortles in Rounds 6-8. Quarterbacks go fast in our league (make sure to plan accordingly with regards to how your league drafts QBs), but as I am three picks away, Bortles is still on the board and the three teams in front of me all already have QBs.

It is perfect - until the owner who drafted Tom Brady takes Bortles.

I rebounded with a great third receiver/tight end option in Detroit's Marvin Jones, but I am not going to lie. That one hurt.

I eventually grabbed Andy Dalton in the eighth round and Tony Romo was there for the taking in the 13th, so I figured why not? A solid squad that is going to be really good after Week 3 when I unleash Bell and Peterson.

A couple days later, I drafted out of the No. 4 spot in a 12-team standard league that did use a tight end and also a RB/WR flex, and did the opposite of Sunday. For some reason Julio Jones fell to me, and I followed that up with Brandin Cooks, LeSean McCoy, Jordan Reed (again! Can you believe that) and Tom Brady at quarterback. This team is stacked and my first team is balanced, but it's a long season.

You will not win or lose your league based on your draft, as long as you practice what I am going to talk about now for every week during the season: "ABW: Always Be Working" the waiver wire and trading block.

Only one more week of preseason football and it's time for the real thing. Next week I will return to the regular lineup of Start these Guys, Pick up These Guys and give some tidbits on how to structure your lineup in Week 1.

Here's how I drafted my two teams:


Last Action Heroes;                           Fantasy Whisperer

14-Team PPR, No. 10                        Pick 12-Team Standard, No. 4 Pick

Rd. 1 RB Adrian Peterson (10)           WR Julio Jones (4)

Rd. 2 RB Le'Veon Bell (19)                 WR Brandin Cooks (21)

Rd. 3 WR Donte Moncrief (38)            RB LeSean McCoy (28)

Rd. 4 TE Jordan Reed (47)                 TE Jordan Reed (45)

Rd. 5 RB Jeremy Langford (66)           QB Tom Brady (52)

Rd. 6 WR Marvin Jones (75)               WR Jeremy Maclin (69)

Rd.7 WR Kevin White (94)                   RB Frank Gore (76)

Rd. 8 QB Andy Dalton (103)                 WR Marvin Jones (93)

Rd. 9 TE Tyler Eifert (122)                    WR John Brown (100)

Rd. 10 RB Theo Riddick (131)              QB Dak Prescott (117)

Rd. 11 RB Tevin Coleman (150)             K Steven Hauschka (124

Rd. 12 WR Richard Matthews (159)        RB T.J. Yeldon (131)

Rd. 13 QB Tony Romo (178)                   WR Tajae Sharp (148)

Rd. 14 K Blair Walsh (187)                      DEF Oakland (155)

Rd. 15 DEF New England (206)               RB Christine Michael (172


- Chris Parry is a staff writer for the Tyler Morning Telegraph and His fantasy takeaway can be read each Thursday. Feel free to drop him a line with any questions or comments at and you can tweet to @CParryETFS.






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