Fantasy Football Draft Strategy: #7 Pick

Fantasy Draft Strategy
by: Aaron Montes, Devin Willems Posted: Aug 6, 2021 / 05:37 AM CDT / Updated: Aug 6, 2021 / 05:37 AM CDT

The NFL season is almost upon us, and that means fantasy football drafts are happening! Having a strategy going into your draft is extremely important as it sets the stage for a championship winning season. Each and every draft is different, and strategies will vary based on the draft slot. I’m here to show some strategies based off the slots you could be drafting from to help win your league!

The 7th pick makes for another tough spot to draft from. There are guys available here that are super uncomfortable to select in any fantasy football league. I’ll use a 12 team PPR mock draft on Sleeper to show my strategy and see how it plays out.

Pre-draft Strategy

I will look to grab some strong RBs from this spot, especially in the first two rounds. Getting a high end RB2 will make me much more comfortable with whoever I take in round 1. I will look to continue to build my RB core and find some high upside pass catchers as the draft goes on.

Round 1

No one slid to my pick here which was unfortunate. I believe that this is too early for TE and WR. I also don’t trust Saquon Barkley and Jonathan Taylor at this point in the 1st round. That leaves me between Aaron Jones and Austin Ekeler. I decided on Jones as he gives me more rush yards with a lot of work in the pass game as well. While this looks like a reach according to his ADP, Jones has consistently blown his ADP out of the water. He has also been a touchdown machine in a very good offense. Jones doesn’t feel great here, but the fact remains he is an elite fantasy producer.

Rounds 2-5

With my 2nd round pick I selected Najee Harris. Rookie RBs aren’t always the safest, but Harris will be the bell cow in Pittsburgh and I expect him to be a very solid producer. Getting him to pair with Jones makes me feel very good about my RBs early in this draft.

I was looking at James Robinson here in the 3rd, but I went with Allen Robinson instead. I expect the QB play in Chicago to improve a lot, and Robinson will benefit greatly. He is a super safe WR1 which lets me look for some guys with huge upside later.

Amari Cooper was my 4th pick. Him being available here almost makes me wish I had gone with James Robinson in the 3rd. That being said, fantasy football is all about value, and getting Cooper here is great value with him most likely finishing as a WR1. I do think the pivot in strategy here works out well for me.

TJ Hockenson was my 5th round pick. He is a high upside TE in Detroit and will get a ton of targets. There weren’t any RBs I was comfortable with here so I went with Hockenson’s value here. He secures my TE slot for the year.

Rounds 6-9

Mike Davis and Gus Edwards were tempting names here, but I completely pivoted and took Chase Claypool with my 6th pick. Claypool has some of the highest boom potential of any player this season. The WRs I have on this roster allow me to take the risk on Claypool here. If he breaks out my WR core is the best in the league.

My hope that one of those RBs would fall did not happen. None of the other ones here were worth the pick, so I took Deebo Samuel in the 7th. He should have a strong presence in the 49ers offense, so the upside and value he provides here is worth the pick.

I went with Michael Carter in the 8th round. His role will expand as the season goes on and he gives me some really good potential as the season goes on. I don’t feel great about him as my RB3, but I do like Carter as a player. My pivot to focusing on pass catchers makes sure that Carter won’t have to be vital to my team which in the end makes this a solid pick.

Jalen Hurts is who I went with in the 9th round. Ryan Tannehill was gone by this point and Hurts offers the most potential for a high end QB at this point. His rushing ceiling gives him solid fantasy value. With the Eagles playing from behind most of the time, Hurts will be passing a lot. He is a solid choice that I can easily drop and stream if he doesn’t pan out.

Rounds 10-16

In the 10th round I grabbed AJ Dillon who gives me insurance for Jones. This pick makes me confident in my 1st round pick as Dillon will step in and be extremely fantasy relevant if Jones goes down. I can stash him on my bench until I absolutely need him.

I selected Marvin Jones in the 11th round. He is super underrated and could take over as Trevor Lawrence’s favorite target. He is a deep threat and a menace in the red zone. This gives him really good value this late in the draft.

In the 12th round I grabbed some insurance for Jalen Hurts. Trey Lance will be the starter sooner than later and offers high rushing upside. Should he take over and play well, he gives me a great option if Hurts does not live up to his fantasy potential.

Russell Gage was my 13th rounder. He will slide into the WR2 spot for Atlanta, a spot that has been very fantasy football relevant the past several years. I don’t think he will match the stats of the past guys who have played that position, but the late round flier is worth it should he outperform expectations.

I have zero faith in Eric Ebron to maintain the starting TE spot on the Steelers. So I grabbed Pat Freiermuth who has had nothing but great things said about him in camp. If he takes over as a main red zone target in Pittsburgh, he could be a steal this late.

With my last two picks I grabbed the Carolina Panthers defense who played the Jets in week 1, and Robbie Gould who will have a good amount of opportunities on the 49ers. I will end up streaming both positions based off matchups as the season progresses.

Final Result

This draft didn’t start the most comfortable, but I got some elite fantasy production in the end. Some will say Jones is a reach in the first, but he has always payed off. Combining him with the guy I followed it up with makes it even better. I was able to pivot my strategy after the first two rounds and come out better for it. The 7th pick is hard, but I think this turned out to be a great team.

  • QB: Jalen Hurts
  • RB: Aaron Jones
  • RB: Najee Harris
  • WR: Allen Robinson
  • WR: Amari Cooper
  • TE: TJ Hockenson
  • FLEX: Chase Claypool
  • D/ST: Carolina Panthers
  • K: Robbie Gould
  • Bench: Deebo Samuel
  • Michael Carter
  • AJ Dillon
  • Marvin Jones
  • Trey Lance
  • Russell Gage
  • Pat Freiermuth

Below is the entire draft board to see how it all went down.

I hope this helped develop some strategy from the 7th pick in your draft. Thanks for reading and good luck in your fantasy football league!

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