In this series, I will continue to go over players at the same position and ADP who should not be drafted next to each other. Check out Part 1 where I argue against drafting Derrick Henry and Alshon Jeffery!
Draft Miles Sanders (RB36 at 7.12), Not Latavius Murray (RB35 at 7.09)
In fantasy football, it’s usually better to take the young stud who a team invested draft capital into, opposed to a journeyman behind one of the best running backs in the game. Latavius Murray is a serviceable backup, but he doesn’t have league-winning upside even if Kamara were to get hurt.
Murray has averaged a mediocre 4.0 yards per carry over the past four seasons, and 43 targets total in the past two seasons. He likely doesn’t have the pass-game chops to be the Saints lead-back.
All in all, Kamara is the judge, jury, and executioner in that rushing attack and it is likely that he will receive over 100 targets once again. At best, Murray will fit the Mark Ingram role of 2018 but judging by his profile, it’s unlikely that Murray is as good as Ingram.
Miles Sanders, on the other hand, is on a great offense with a wide-open backfield. The Eagles invested serious draft capital into Sanders, selecting him in the second round.
Mike Braude has written about Sanders as a guy to be taken seriously. He’s an excellent athlete, arguably the best of this running back class, and his production was good once Saquon Barkley entered the NFL draft.
Sanders’ main competition for carries is Jordan Howard, who the Bears were happy to deal in exchange for a 2020 sixth-round pick. Even with Howard, the Eagles selected Sanders in the second round.
It’s obvious who the better athlete is.
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Sanders is also receiving rave reviews from beat writers:
Three overreactions from the guy attending his first Eagles training camp practice of the summer:
1. Miles Sanders looks different than the other RBs when he touches the ball. If ball security and pass pro are non-issues, seems like a matter of when, not if, he is the lead back.
— Sheil Kapadia (@SheilKapadia) July 30, 2019
Howard was deemed obsolete in the fast-paced/mismatch offense of Matt Nagy in Chicago, and there is little reason to believe he will dominate touches in a similar system in Philadelphia. Backs like Howard, who are inefficient in the passing game, are difficult to play extensively.
It is within the reasonable realm of possibilities that Sanders is the top rookie running back in fantasy this year
Draft Curtis Samuel (WR44 at 9.12), Not N’Keal Harry (WR42 at 9.05)
We may think about Curtis Samuel as a possible “late bloomer”, but we must remember he was among the youngest players in the 2017 draft class, and is somehow still only 22 years old. Indeed, he was the number one player in RotoViz’s Phenom Index for 2017 . Number two? JuJu Smith-Schuster.
He profiled as a Percy Harvin-type prospect coming out of Ohio State as a hybrid WR/RB, but he has apparently come a long way in honing his WR craft:
Norv on Curtis Samuel: “He’s becoming an outstanding route runner.”
— Max Henson (@PanthersMax) July 29, 2019
With Devin Funchess gone and Greg Olsen fading into the twilight of his career, Samuel has an absolute lock on the WR2 job in Carolina – only D.J. Moore and all-world Christian McCaffrey are likely ahead of him in the passing game pecking order. He’s an exciting WR3 going at a low-end WR4 price.
N’Keal Harry, however, has seemed to go downhill ever since his draft-night hype. In minicamp, he underperformed. In training camp, he started out behind ho-hum options like Phillip Dorsett and Maurice Harris. Even if he was just getting the rookie treatment, he was outplayed by a rookie UDFA:
Undrafted free agent WR Jakobi Meyers has consistently made plays in competitive situations. Has out-performed N'Keal although again, we're just a week in. #Patriots
— Michael Giardi (@MikeGiardi) August 1, 2019
The Patriots have a history of unproductive rookie wide receivers. Their complex system has proven consistently difficult first-year players to crack. The odds of Harry being a solid WR3 or even WR4 considering the terrible start to his on-field career and the history of Patriots receivers is small. Take Samuel over him every time in redraft leagues.