In fantasy football the word value is thrown around often. A player can be undervalued or overvalued, but what does that mean? A player’s value is based on their end of the year statistics compared to their average draft position. If two players are expected to end the year with similar fantasy points, but player A is being drafted in round 3 and player B is being drafted in round 6 you could say that either player A is being overvalued or player B is being undervalued. As you can imagine to build the best team you will need to get as much value with your picks as you can.
How do you find Value?
To find out which players are under or over valued you have to put things into context. Depending on what site you are drafting on, a player’s value will be different. Each draft site whether it be Yahoo, ESPN, or NFL.com all rank players differently. By taking a deeper look into the difference between site rankings you can find discrepancies and use them to find the players who are over or undervalued in your draft.
Under Valued Players: The guys you want to draft
Danny Woodhead – RB – SD
Every year Woodhead goes under valued but this year it is especially true in Yahoo leagues. I don’t promise that he will return as a RB1 again, but he is ranked as their RB39 and you can get him in the 9th or 10th round of your draft. Compare that to ESPN’s and NFL.com’s RB29 and RB24 where he is going a full 3 rounds sooner. If you are looking for a solid flex or a RB 2 in PPR Woodhead is an absolute steal in Yahoo leagues.
Ameer Abdullah – RB – DET
Abdullah should start the season as Detroit’s #1 RB but Yahoo sure isn’t valuing him that way. Between the three sites he is positionally ranked the same but, overall he is going a full 2 rounds later on yahoo. ESPN and NFL.com have Abdullah going as the 77th overall player while Yahoo has him as the 99th overall. Taking a teams starting RB in the 8th round can be considered almost a sure thing, he should be a RB2 and will provide at the least flex value.
Keenan Allen – WR – SD
An early round pick that is likely to fall around further than expected. He is the WR9 and WR10 on Yahoo and NFl.com but is WR16 on ESPN. As the 18th overall player on both Yahoo and NFL.com he will be taken in the 2nd round, but Allen is the 31st ranked player on ESPN. If you have an early draft spot it is quite possible that Allen could become your WR3.
Dwayne Allen – TE – IND
The second undervalued Allen on ESPN. If you are going to be one of those players waiting until the late rounds to grab a TE then Allen maybe the guy for you. He is going as TE13 on both Yahoo and NFL.com but on ESPN he is going as TE 17, a full 6 rounds later. In the past Allen has been great when Colby Fleener did not play. Now with Fleener traded to the Saints, Allen is a possible breakout candidate that will likely go to undrafted in ESPN leagues.
Andrew Luck – QB – IND
Not the biggest difference in ADP, but for a player who could end the season as the #1 fantasy QB I thought it was enough to mention. Ranked as QB 4 on both Yahoo and ESPN, Luck is ranked as QB8 on NFL.com. In the early rounds of a draft the talent drop-off is far steeper than in the late rounds. Being able to fit in another WR or RB before your QB can be a difference maker to your season.
Marvin Jones – WR – DET
With Calvin Johnson’s retirement there are a lot of targets to go around in Detroit and between the three sites there is a good amount of variation on who will get them. Yahoo has Jones as the 68th overall player while on ESPN you can get him a round later at 80th overall, and on NFL.com a round after that at 92nd overall. If you take Jones and he becomes the #1 WR in Detroit he will be a home run at his price. Even if he stays as the teams #2WR for a 7th round pick he wont be half bad.
Over Valued Players: The guys you want to avoid
Tavon Austin – WR – LA
Even though his Positional ranking is pretty close between sites, Austin is going a full round sooner on Yahoo. He is being taken as the 88th player off the board, while on ESPN and NFL.com he is the 99th and 100th player. This far into the draft a one round price shouldn’t be enough to turn you away, but if you aren’t sold on Austin then it would be wise not to reach for him.
Marvin Jones – WR – DET
Just as Jones is undervalued on NFL.com he is overvalued on YAHOO. Yahoo has Jones as the 68th overall player while on ESPN you can get him a round later at 80th overall, and on NFL.com a round after that at 92nd overall. If you take Jones in the 5th you better hope he becomes the #1 WR in Detroit while on the other sites he has some good leeway to be worth the pick.
Thomas Rawls – RB – SEA
Now I already am not a fan of Rawls for 2016. He is coming back from an injury and has a high possibility of being part of a timeshare, but even if you think he will be the guy in Seattle, he is a bad pick in ESPN drafts. Ranked as their RB10 you will have to take him in the second round, while Yahoo and NFL.com have him ranked as the RB16 and RB 21 going a full round or 2 later.
Jarvis Landry – WR – MIA
Landry was a PPR stud last year but if you want him on NFL.com you are going to have to pay more. Even in standard he is going as WR 18 at a 3rd round cost. Compared to WR 24 and WR21 on Yahoo and ESPN you will have to take Landry a whole round sooner than on other draft sites.
How should you use this to your advantage?
Player rankings differ every where you look, but what is important is to make sure to compare your own rankings against whatever draft site you are using. The best idea is to try to do some mock drafts and find which players consistently fall below your rankings. If you know you will be able to grab one of your favorite running backs late in the draft, then you can aim to take a good receiver early. More causal players will be tempted to take the sites best player available while you will know they are being over rated and can focus on building a better team with your value picks.