Fantasy Football Mock Draft: Can You Pass On Calvin Johnson In Round 1?

Posted on July 21, 2014 by Ken Zalis

Before you know it, it will be fantasy football draft time. Leading up to that time, I will be conducting many mock drafts. During the drafts, I will pick in all 12 positions, with all sorts of scenarios. 

As a rule, I prefer to draft three starting running backs within the first four rounds. It is a tried-and-true strategy, which has done me well for 20-plus years. The mock drafts I do will all assume 12 teams are in the league (unless otherwise noted) with the following positions: quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, tight end, a flex (running back, wide receiver or tight end), kicker, team defense and six bench spots. So it is a 16-round snake draft.

Here is scenario No. 7.

As a reminder, here are scenario No. 1scenario No. 2scenario No. 3scenario No. 4scenario No. 5 and scenario No. 6.

I have the seventh overall pick. Let's see how it all works out. In this format, we are playing in a points per reception league (one point per reception).

You can see the entire draft by clicking here.

Here is my roster:

Round 1, Pick 7: wide receiver Calvin Johnson (Detroit)

Round 2, Pick 6: wide receiver Julio Jones (Atlanta)

Round 3, Pick 7: wide receiver Randall Cobb (Green Bay)

Round 4, Pick 6: wide receiver Victor Cruz (NY Giants)

Round 5, Pick 7: running back Rashad Jennings (NY Giants)

Round 6, Pick 6: running back Pierre Thomas (New Orleans)

Round 7, Pick 7: running back Ray Rice (Baltimore)

Round 8, Pick 6: quarterback Matt Ryan (Atlanta)

Round 9, Pick 7: quarterback Tom Brady (New England)

Round 10, Pick 6: tight end Charles Clay (Miami)

Round 11, Pick 7: running back Devonta Freeman (Atlanta) 

Round 12, Pick 6: wide receiver Brian Hartline (Miami)

Round 13, Pick 7: running back David Wilson (NY Giants) 

Round 14, Pick 6: Arizona Cardinals defense

Round 15, Pick 7: kicker Steven Hauschka (Seattle)

Round 16, Pick 6: wide receiver Jarret Boykin (Green Bay)

Some observations:

So, I asked the question, can you pass on Johnson if he's available during the first round? The answer here is a resounding yes.

If you take Johnson off this team and replace him with Montee Ball or Gio Bernard, it is still a playoff-type team, and I'd feel better about my running back situation. The team as it is, in a PPR format like this, is strong. Plus, I will have ample trade bait, especially if Cruz can revert back to pre-2013 season form. At tight end, Clay has the potential to make 70-80 catches. Quarterback is once again solid, grabbing Ryan and Brady late. The running backs are OK -- Thomas should be a PPR darling this season, and Jennings will be given the keys to the Giants' backfield. I took Brown later just in case Jennings gets hurt.

So can you pass on Johnson? Sure you can, but it's hard to do on draft day.

What do you think? Let me know by leaving a comment or contacting me on Twitter @fansfantasy.

You can sign up for a free mock draft simulator by clicking here. Practice makes perfect.

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