August finally is in full swing, which means the NFL regular season isn’t too far behind. As a result, it’s time to start preparing for your fantasy football draft.
One of the toughest decisions an owner will make is his or her first one. If you pick the wrong player in the first round, that could derail your season before it even starts.
With that, let’s look at 10 players you probably should avoid in the first round of your draft.
Tom Brady, Quarterback, New England Patriots
You obviously should draft Brady, and you should draft him pretty early. However, the first round is too early. You likely can grab Brady or Aaron Rodgers in Rounds 2 or 3, so focus on the top running backs and wide receivers during the first round.
Aaron Rodgers, Quarterback, Green Bay Packers
See Brady, Tom.
Ezekiel Elliott, Running Back, Dallas Cowboys
Elliott is an obvious first-round pick based on talent, but unless he wins his appeal, he’s set to miss the first six games of the Cowboys’ season. That’s too lengthy of a suspension to warrant taking him in the first 10 to 15 picks.
Rob Gronkowski, Tight End, New England Patriots
Gronkowski is the top tight end in the league, but his injury history makes him a tough choice for fantasy football owners. If you do pick Gronk, you’ll want to have a solid backup plan. And you probably can grab him post-Round 1, so there’s no need to go TE with your first pick.
Marshawn Lynch, Running Back, Oakland Raiders
Lynch currently has an average draft position of 37.1 on Yahoo! Sports, so he’s not exactly a popular first-round pick. But intrigue is high with Lynch after he came out of retirement to play for the Raiders, and that year off makes him a gamble no matter where you pick him.
Leonard Fournette, Running Back, Jacksonville Jaguars
After the year Elliott had as a rookie, everyone will be looking for that potential next breakout star, and Fournette could be that guy. However, there should be no need to draft him as high as Round 1 given the other elite RB options available.
Christian McCaffrey, Running Back, Carolina Panthers
See Fournette, Leonard.
Dez Bryant, Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys
Bryant had a bit of a bounce-back season last year after only tallying three touchdowns in nine games in 2015, but he still hasn’t played all 16 games since 2014. He still is one of the best wide receivers in the league, but Antonio Brown, Julio Jones and Odell Beckham Jr. all are better first-round WR options.
T.Y. Hilton, Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts
Hilton has played in at least 15 games in every season since entering the NFL, so durability isn’t a question with him. But again, go with Brown, Jones or Beckham at wideout before even considering Hilton.
Brandin Cooks, Wide Receiver, New England Patriots
Cooks has first-round talent, but when you play in a loaded offense with Gronk, Julian Edelman and Co., there always will be a question mark surrounding your potential production each week.
Thumbnail photo via Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports Images
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