We’ve seen a lot of movement in Dynasty Player Rankings as the dust settles post-NFL Draft. Landing spots and draft capital can completely change the path to success for rookies and veterans alike. As Dynasty owners, we love to project the future production of fantasy players, and the NFL Draft is a big day where we tweak our rankings and decide whether we’re “out” or “all in” on certain guys. In light of this, I want to cover a few names that may be fool’s gold based on their perceived situation. In this article, we will focus on some players that seemingly “won” the NFL Draft but that I am still avoiding at their respective prices.
Pacheco was a seventh-round pick out of Rutgers in the 2022 NFL Draft, going to the Kansas City Chiefs. He took a prominent role in the offense around Week 10 as Clyde Edwards-Helaire (CEH) was phased out of the rotation. He finished his rookie season with 830 rushing yards and five TDs and looked much more dynamic than his counterpart CEH. Pacheco’s downhill rushing style helped him consistently see the field in Year 1. He rushed for 5.1 yards per carry (YPC) and tacked on a touchdown in the Super Bowl, helping to secure the Lombardi trophy for the Chiefs. You can check out their NFL live betting odds to repeat as back-to-back Champs
Considering the late-round draft capital he received, Pacheco had an incredible rookie season. He was one of the biggest surprises of the 2022 season, as many believed 2020 first-round draft pick CEH had the RB1 role locked up in Kansas City. Still, many expected the Chiefs to grab another RB early in the 2023 Draft. Starting RBs with limited or no draft capital seldom hold onto their starting job for long. Some recent examples of RBs in this situation include Phillip Lindsay, James Robinson, and Tyler Allgeier. All of these backs had solid rookie seasons, but the lack of team investment confirmed that their teams had little faith in them as the long-term answer, and they were soon replaced. So it shocked the fantasy community when Kansas City elected to pass on an RB in the 2023 NFL Draft.
There’s no denying Pacheco had a fortuitous start to his NFL career, and that trend continued through the draft last month. But I’m not convinced he will significantly improve in Year 2 for a few reasons. First, Pacheco was not used heavily during the 2022 season, even though he was considered the top back in Kansas City. He never hit a 60% snap count in any game, and he only exceeded 15 carries twice all year. Second, Pacheco was rarely involved in the passing attack, averaging just 0.8 targets per game. Jerick McKinnon was the clear pass-catcher in this backfield, finishing with 71 targets and 56 receptions. And the Chiefs have signed McKinnon again, securing him for the 2023 season, so Pacheco’s limited receiving role will remain the same. Because of this, you’ll have to rely on rushing touchdowns if you put Pacheco in your starting lineup, which we all know can be volatile. In addition, several veteran RBs are still sitting in free agency, waiting to be signed. Contending teams will likely sign these older backs to improve their Super Bowl odds, and the Chiefs fall right into that category. I will not be surprised if this Kansas City backfield looks much more crowded by September.
Devone Achane was selected with the 84th overall pick by the Miami Dolphins in the 2023 NFL Draft. This landing spot was considered by many to be the best possible backfield for a rookie RB to walk into. In the second half of 2022, this committee backfield consisted of Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson, ages 31 and 27, respectively. Neither RB has ever finished as an RB2 in PPR formats, so they needed to add some talent to this depleted backfield. Coach Mike McDaniel is one of the great young minds in the NFL today, and Miami fans are hopeful he can find a way to utilize the speedster from Texas A&M.
On top of Achane’s solid collegiate football career, he was also an All-American track star for the Aggies. This speed was apparent on the football field, as his burst and quickness were second to none in this RB class. Achane developed into an impressive pass-catcher, has above-average vision, and is exceptional between the tackles. However, the glaring red flag with Achane’s profile is his size. He measured 5’9″ and 188 lbs., which is equivalent to a BMI of 27.8.
Now, there have been players in the past that have found success at the NFL level with a sub-30 BMI. A couple of names that come to mind are Christian McCaffrey and Austin Ekeler. But these guys are outliers, not the norm. And a BMI under 28 is an entirely different story.
Achane is an elite athlete and could become a great gadget player in the NFL, but he will never carry a three-down workload. He’s just not built for it. The Dolphins appear to be an ideal landing spot for one of these veteran RBs, like Ezekiel Elliott, Leonard Fournette, or Kareem Hunt. There have also been rumors that Miami would be interested in Dalvin Cook if the Vikings decide to cut him. I don’t believe Achane will have a significant enough role in this Miami offense to be worth starting in Dynasty, especially if they add another piece to this backfield.
Jonathan Mingo was selected 39th overall by the Carolina Panthers, becoming the fifth wide receiver off the board. This early second-round draft capital indicates Carolina thinks very highly of the Ole Miss product. The draft capital is exceptional, and the landing spot will allow Mingo to make an immediate impact as a rookie. The Panthers completed a trade with the Bears this off-season to secure Bryce Young with the first overall pick. The Panthers gave up a ton to move up and grab Young in this draft, so they are confident they have their franchise QB. On top of learning and developing with an excellent QB prospect, this wide receiver room is wide open, so the targets are there for the taking. Carolina signed Adam Thielen and DJ Chark this offseason, but neither player is one we would consider “WR1” material now.
Regarding opportunity, Mingo may have the best of anyone in the WR class. But while Mingo’s increase in Dynasty value is justifiable to an extent, I’m not sold on him yet. His college resume was weak, and he was never more than a boom/bust guy at Ole Miss. Mingo dealt with several foot injuries and didn’t play an entire season until 2022 when he finally broke out with 51 receptions, 861 yards, and five TDs. These are not overly impressive numbers but even less impressive when you look at the game log. Mingo was a streaky player that would have a monster game one week and be invisible the next. His biggest “spike week” this past season was at Vanderbilt, where he hauled nine receptions for 247 yards and 2 TDs. If we remove this outlier, Mingo is left with just 614 yards and three TDs for the entire year. Additionally, Jonathan Mingo didn’t break out until he was nearly 21 and had a target share of just 23.8% that season.
Jonathan Mingo’s biggest strength, which likely compelled the Panthers to draft him in Round 2, is his raw athleticism. He had an athleticism score of 110.2 from the NFL Combine, which ranked 2nd overall in his class. Mingo should have a high ceiling if he continues to sharpen his skills, but he could also easily disappoint at the NFL level. As a result, I would not be willing to grab Mingo until the mid-second round of Dynasty Rookie Superflex drafts.
Rachaad White was a third-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft out of Arizona St. He was part of a committee backfield with Leonard Fournette, playing behind a wildly disappointing offensive line in Tampa Bay. Analytically, both RBs were bad last year, but White was worse. He was 35th amongst 2022 RBs in yards created per touch, 36th in evaded tackles per touch, and 50th in fantasy points per opportunity. What made White a relevant fantasy asset was his ability as a pass-catcher. He finished his rookie year with 50 receptions and a pair of TDs through the air. White’s receiving production accounted for 65% of his fantasy points in PPR formats.
With Tom Brady announcing his retirement, the Buccaneers are in a rebuilding stage heading into 2023. They released 6-year veteran Fournette this offseason, opening up the backfield for White. And Rachaad seemingly dodged a bullet this draft when the Bucs elected not to use any picks on an RB. However, Tampa Bay did sign former Syracuse RB Sean Tucker shortly after the draft. Tucker was projected as a Day 2 draft pick before health concerns overtook headlines and scared NFL teams away from taking a shot on the explosive back. If Tucker can overcome said health concerns, he has the skill set to make an impact at the NFL level and eat into some of White’s workload. Outside of that, the Bucs signed veteran RB Chase Edmonds to a one-year deal this off-season. Edmonds is unlikely to be a serious threat to White, but it is added competition nonetheless.
White will likely be the primary back going into 2023 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as they aren’t a true “contender” and won’t be bringing in a veteran RB. So the RB1 spot is Rachaad’s to lose. Still, I’m unsure how excited we can be, considering the offense he’ll be playing with. The Bucs drafted Cody Mauch, TE turned OT from North Dakota State, who should provide some added protection to this front line. But he’s only one small piece of the puzzle. As of today, the starting QB for the Bucs will be either Baker Mayfield or Kyle Trask. Neither name motivates me to roster or start any Tampa Bay skill players for 2023. And White is an older prospect for his class. He’ll be 25 next season, which is not considered young in today’s NFL for the RB position. Rachaad is being valued as a low-end RB2 in a similar range to Isiah Pacheco. This isn’t unreasonable, but I’m not buying either player at this price tag.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article, and I hope you got some valuable information you can use for your fantasy team! If you’d like additional insight into Dynasty Football news and analysis, please follow me on Twitter at @DynastySavant. Until next time, keep grinding out there, Dynasty family! #DFFArmy #AlwaysBeBuilding