Top 10 fantasy draft picks (PPR leagues)
You’ll not be surprised to see that the top 10 players to draft in fantasy PPR leagues are running backs and receivers. Colts Jonathan Taylor tops the list.
PPR leagues have become the new standard for fantasy football, so we’re listing the top 10 players to draft for that type of league. Quarterback may be the most important position in real life, but as we know with fantasy, there are more valuable positions to consider in your league. Running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends will be the ones to get you the most points, so it would be wise to focus on those players who put up big-time plays, not just those who are targeted a lot, but don’t get down the field. So, we present to you the top 10 fantasy picks for your PPR league.
1. Jonathan Taylor, RB - Colts
Taylor led fantasy running backs with 373 PPR points last season, and was targeted 51 times, had 40 receptions, 360 receiving yards, and two receiving touchdowns - all career highs. He led the league in rushing yards with 1,811 and rushing touchdowns with 18.
2. Najee Harris, RB - Steelers
Like Taylor, Najee Harris managed over 300 PPR fantasy points last season. On the other hand, he only averaged 17.7 PPR points per game. He tied Taylor in targets with 94 and led RBs in receptions with 74. This year, he will be playing with a different quarterback now that Ben Roethlisberger has retired. That is hopefully a positive change for he and the Steelers.
3. Austin Ekeler, RB - Chargers
Ekeler had his breakout season last year with career highs of 206 carries, 911 rushing yards, and 12 rushing touchdowns. On top of that, he had 70 catches for 647 yards and eight touchdowns. He averages 21.4 PPR points per game in fantasy. The only reason we foresee he wouldn’t repeat that kind of performance is that Isaiah Spiller will be sharing some time with him. Otherwise, he should have another impressive season.
4. Cooper Kupp, WR - Rams
Kupp’s 2021 season was undeniably incredible. He won the triple crown, leading all receivers with 145 receptions, 1,947 receiving yards, and 16 touchdowns. The Super Bowl MVP set an NFL record for yards from scrimmage for a wide receiver. He may not have as monster of a year as he did last year, but he should get close to it. Even with the addition of Allen Robinson, Kupp should remain Matthew Stafford’s favorite target.
5. Derrick Henry, RB - Titans
Despite missing nine games with a foot injury last season, Henry averaged 24.3 PPR points per game in the eight games he did play. He had 19 receptions and has consistently averaged at least 19.6 PPR points per game over the last three years. The only risk with Henry is if he’s truly fully healthy this year, especially considering he’s 28 years old. If he is though, he is easily a top competitor with Taylor, Harris, and Ekeler for running back.
6. Christian McCaffrey, RB - Panthers
The biggest question for McCaffrey isn’t whether or not he has the talent to be a top 10 pick in your fantasy draft, but rather, how long will he stay healthy? In 2019, McCaffrey broke records and finished with 29.4 PPR points per game on average. He followed that season with 29.7 PPR points per game in 2020 in just three games. The points are good, but the amount of games are not. Over the last two years, he’s played in just 10 games total. If he can stay healthy, he’s maybe even worth drafting ahead of Jonathan Taylor. But that’s just not something you can predict and would be a risky move.
7. Dalvin Cook, RB - Vikings
Cook didn’t have his best season in 2021, averaging just 15.8 PPR points per game. But in the two seasons before last, he averaged at least 20.8 PPR points per game. Why the change? Last season, he scored just six touchdowns compared to the 30 total he scored in 2019 and 2020. This year, he will be looking to prove he deserves the no. 1 RB spot in Minnesota and if he can stay healthy, he should earn it, which will be good for them, him, and fantasy owners.
8. Justin Jefferson, WR - Vikings
Behind Kupp, Jefferson was second in receiving yards with 1,615. Quarterback Kirk Cousins should continue to throw deep to Jefferson this year, too. Jefferson himself claimed that he will be the best receiver in all of football by the end of the season. He ranked top-five in receptions (108), targets (167), and receiving yards (95.1) per game last year, and if he continues on that trend, he may just be right.
9. Ja’Marr Chase, WR - Bengals
Chase is QB Joe Burrow’s obvious favorite target and last year, he broke Jefferson’s record for most receiving yards by a rookie and his 18 yards per reception was the second-best in the NFL, behind Deebo Samuel. In the playoffs, Chase had consecutive 100-yard games. He way exceeded expectations as a fantasy WR in 2021. Now that he’s had a year of experience, Chase should just continue to get better.
10. CeeDee Lamb, WR - Cowboys
Lamb is the Cowboys new no. 1 WR. That means, he’s getting all the targets. When he was competing with Amari Cooper for targets, he didn’t have quite the opportunities he will have now. With Cooper gone and the other Cowboys WRs injured, recovering, or just getting their toes wet in the NFL, Lamb is likely to see a huge increase in targets, which means more fantasy points. In 2021, Lamb scored in the double digits in all but one game, and in that game, he was only targeted six times.