The 2018 NFL Draft was certainly one to remember. There were plenty of trades to keep the audience entertained with teams moving up, down, and back up again. There were four quarterbacks taken in the first ten picks and five taken in the first round, including former Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson being scooped with the last pick by the Ravens.
Now that the draft is over, we can finally analyze different rookies in a new light now that we know which team they’re on. This list will be most relevant in dynasty league rookie drafts, but it will also be a great tool in standard re-draft leagues. I will also be using a “tier-based” ranking system instead of the traditional “one through x” system. I prefer this style of ranking because it accounts for the grey area associated with players instead of just being black-and-white.
Saquon Barkley – RB – New York Giants
Getting passed up by the Browns was the best possible thing to happen to Barkley. The Giants have an offense that can allow for a running game to grow and be worth investing in. Saquon is hands-down the best player in this draft class.
Calvin Ridley – WR – Atlanta Falcons
Ridley joins an elite passing attack in the Atlanta Falcons. How he fell all the way to No. 26 is beyond me, especially considering all the teams that need a receiver who can start day one. Atlanta will be a good fit for Calvin Ridley.
Sony Michel – RB – New England Patriots
The Patriots backfield will be an enigma wrapped in a Rubix cube once again, but Michel has my vote as lead back. Based on the talent he flashed at Georgia and given the Patriots top-tier offensive line, I like Sony Michel’s chances.
Kerryon Johnson – RB – Detroit Lions
Speaking of talent, Kerryon Johnson should also make for a nice pickup if you can’t get your hands on any of the aforementioned players. The Lions haven’t had talent like this in the backfield in a long time. The Lions also somewhat addressed their needs on the offensive line by drafting Frank Ragnow, a center, out of Arkansas with the 20th overall pick and Tyrell Crosby, a guard, out of Oregon with a fifth-round pick.
Tier Three (a.k.a. the QB tier)
Josh Rosen – QB – Arizona Cardinals
I put Rosen as the first quarterback simply because he has the best situation and the best targets. While he isn’t as mobile and get as many rushing yards as Baker Mayfield, he will be going to arguably the best offense of the rookie quarterbacks.
Baker Mayfield – QB – Cleveland Browns
The poor guy went to the Browns. While that bumps him down quite a bit, in my humble opinion, he is still a very talented quarterback. His rushing ability makes him a decent target in fantasy drafts.