7 Must Have Fantasy Players for 2018

Posted: Saturday, August 25, 2018


Not sure who to target in your drafts this year? Here are seven guys that are worth targeting after Round 1 is in the books.

Joe MixonJoe Mixon, RB - CIN
There's a good chance that if you have one of the first 5 picks in your draft that you'll be able to see Mixon came back to you towards the end of the second round. If there is a player to target here, it's definitely Mixon who is projected for 1,300 all-purpose yards and 9 scores. He's the 15th RB off the boards and has a legitimate chance at finishing the year as a Top 10. Plenty of comparisons have been made between Mixon and Le'Veon Bell, and while their offenses are not equal, the talent and workload are somewhat similar. If there's an ideal RB2 to add to your roster, this is it.

Chris Hogan, WR - NE
Here's a guy that you may not be expecting to see in the 5th round, but Chris Hogan's value has been climbing. Look at the Patriots' wide receiver situation. Julian Edelman will miss four games due to suspension. Brandin Cooks was traded to the Rams. Amendola is in Miami. Rex Burkhead is dealing with a knee issue, and Jordan Matthews was just cut from the team. They still have an elite QB in Tom Brady and there are a ton of targets up for grabs here. Hogan has never had more than 41 receptions in a season, but he's capable of beating his 70 projected receptions this year. He's being drafted as a WR2/3 and should definitely be targeted.

Trey BurtonTrey Burton, TE - CHI
When you look at our weighted consensus TE rankings, Trey Burton sits at #10 squarely between Jordan Reed and Jack Doyle. Both are talented tight ends, but Burton is the guy to own here. He scored a fantastic 2.51 fantasy points for every target last season largely due to his 5 scores. The Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs expects Trey Burton to challenge Martellus Bennett's franchise record for receiving yards in a season by a tight end (916 yards). Bears coach Matt Nagy has said that he intends to use Burton in more of a "Travis Kelce" type role. If that happens, there's no reason to think that Burton won't finish the season as a Top 5 tight end. Not bad for a guy you can get at the end of 7th or first part of the 8th round.

Doug Baldwin, WR - SEA
With a knee injury that has largely kept him sidelined this pre-season, Doug Baldwin's ADP has been dropping. He's now being taken near the end of the 3rd round or early 4th round. We fully expect Baldwin to be ready to go for Week 1, so let others have their doubts about Baldwin's ceiling. Follow us on this. Jimmy Graham, Luke Willson, and Paul Richardson are gone leaving a monstrous 216 targets available along with 39% of the targets from inside the 10 yard line. The replacements (Ed Dickson, Jaron Brown, and Nick Vannett) are average at best. The connection between Baldwin and Russell Wilson is strong - Baldwin has finished the last three years as a WR1 averaging 15.5 fantasy points per game. With a Seattle defense in decline and a questionable run game, expect the Seahawks to throw more this year. Baldwin can be had as a WR2 with WR1 upside.

Marshawn LynchMarshawn Lynch, RB - OAK
There's still some gas left in this tank. We've watched Lynch's ADP slowly climb over the past three weeks. He's the 25th-ranked RB in our consensus rankings and is going near the 5th round in most 12-team drafts making him a solid RB2/3. Lynch is running behind one of the best offensive lines in the league and gets 2/3 of all the carries in the redzone. He should get a ton of work this season (225+ touches) along with all of those goal-line carries. He's a perfect example of cost versus value. His cost is minimal for the value that he brings. If you end up with Marshawn as your RB2 or Flex, grab some Skittles and count yourself fortunate. #BeastMode

Marquise Goodwin, WR - SF
We actually expected Pierre Garcon to be the guy in San Francisco, but it looks like Goodwin is the guy to own there. You should be able to get him in the 5th or 6th round of 12-team drafts. Every beat writer from the Bay has called it, and now it's official. Goodwin sits atop the WR depth chart and should build upon his 9.16 yards per target last year. Keep in mind that those numbers were with poor QB play most of the year. Goodwin should push for 1K yards this season with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. In fact, over the final five games last year, Goodwin was a Top 10 PPR player. This is a guy that is currently ranked 31st among all receivers. Solid value here.

Jamaal WilliamsJamaal Williams, RB - GB
With Aaron Jones out the first two games, Jamaal Williams has an opportunity to show the Packers why he deserves the starting gig. His pass blocking skills mean that he has value to Green Bay even when he's not toting the ball, but blocking doesn't put up fantasy points. What does put up numbers is a solid workload and an honest defense. Nobody keeps defenses more honest than Aaron Rodgers, and Williams is a lock for 20+ touches to start the season. Jones and Ty Montgomery will eat into that workload throughout the season, but Williams has fantastic value in the 7th round as an RB3/4. ESPN's Rob Demovsky believes that it will be the 'Jamaal Williams Show' this season.

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