With the NFL Draft just over a month away, I’ve been breaking down top prospects and their ideal fits for Dynasty fantasy football. If you need a refresher on Dynasty, I wrote about how fun it can be in my previous articles. Here are the prospects I’ve covered so far:
- Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati
- Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State
- Jahan Dotson, WR, Penn State
- David Bell, WR, Purdue
- Isaiah Spiller, RB, Texas A&M
Lucio Vainesman also broke down the best landing spots for these prospects, too:
- Jameson Williams, WR, Alabama
- Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State
- Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas
- Drake London, WR, USC
- Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss
- Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State
Today, I’m breaking down the best Dynasty situations for Pittsburgh quarterback Kenny Pickett. Pickett seems like a lock to be a first-round pick. He’s been commonly referred to as a well-developed, high-floor prospect. Crissy Froyd specifically praised Pickett’s consistency and his scheme versatility.
“Pickett is average or above-average in every aspect of quarterbacking, which makes him a good fit for any scheme in the NFL—he has a larger range of landing spots than any other quarterback in the draft as well,” said Froyd.
Remember, this article is about the teams that could best maximize Pickett’s skill set and not about his most likely destinations. While I think a team like, say, the Panthers is a strong possibility for Pickett, I wouldn’t be too eager to draft Pickett in Dynasty if Carolina selects him. I’d say the same about Atlanta and Washington, too. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out on Twitter @ZachCohenFB. I’d be happy to have a conversation!
You’ll notice a common theme with these teams. All of them have shaky starters with questions about their long-term potential. That’s not to say quarterback Matt Ryan can’t be a winning quarterback in his first year in Indianapolis but it opens the door for Pickett to see valuable action sooner rather than later. While the Colts have undoubtedly struggled at the quarterback position in recent years, their top-flight ground game can soften Pickett’s passing deficiencies. From a weapon standpoint, Indianapolis currently just has Michael Pittman Jr. to be encouraged about. Luckily for Pickett, the Colts have boasted a top offensive line for a few seasons now. They return four starters from last season who have an average age of 26.75. Translation: there may be no better spot for Pickett to get comfortable. This may not be the best landing spot for his fantasy value but if Frank Reich opens up the passing game more, it could help Pickett rack up a hefty amount of fantasy points. It just may take a while since it seems Ryan will be the main starter for at least another season (he has two years left on his contract).
New Orleans Saints
This isn’t the same old Saints we used to know. They re-signed James Winston, yet the jury is still out on if he can be a franchise quarterback. Dennis Allen also replaced Sean Payton as the head coach, though we shouldn’t expect too many differences between their squads. So where would that leave Pickett? You guessed it: in a place where he’s not forced to start right away. Look, I think Pickett could easily be a day one starter for an NFL team. I just think his long-term fantasy value could be better if he’s not forced into a starting lineup, let alone a bad situation. For example, I’d be more comfortable drafting picket in Dynasty if he were a Saint rather than a Panther. Despite shake-ups at important positions, New Orleans still seems to be a stable organization with quarterback-friendly playmakers in Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas. And with Winston back on just a two-year deal, Pickett could easily stake his claim as the Saints’ heir to Drew Brees. I don’t know if Pickett will last until New Orleans’ pick at 18 but I like his chances with them to become a solid fantasy quarterback.
My reasoning for Pittsburgh is very similar to my reasoning for New Orleans. Mike Tomlin runs a smooth ship, one which could help a young quarterback flourish. Najee Harris and Diontae Johnson seem like long-term offensive pieces. No one knows if newly signed quarterback Mitchell Trubisky will be the answer. And as the cherry on top, Pickett played college ball in Pittsburgh. What separates Pittsburgh from the other teams on this list comes down to potential volume. Yes, we’ve seen Indianapolis and New Orleans stay committed to pass-heavy offenses in recent years, but their current personnel suggest a more balanced approach. While the Steelers seem to be building a somewhat solid foundation for their run game, Tomlin is no stranger to passer-friendly offenses. Since 2009, only once have the Steelers finished below league average in passing yards. Since 2011, they’ve also finished below league average in pass attempts once, too. It’s an interesting case study because Ben Roethlisberger was Tomlin’s primary quarterback for all but one season since Tomlin’s hiring in 2007. Still, all those factors point toward a promising career trajectory if Pickett were to stay in Pittsburgh for his NFL career. Naturally, that would boost his fantasy stock as well.
I will admit: I kept going back-and-forth on whether I wanted to include the Seahawks. They were the only team to run fewer than 1,000 plays last season and they were tied for the second-fewest pass attempts. Head Coach Pete Carroll also seems hellbent on making the run game a pivotal piece of the offense. In other words, I would not trust Pickett “to cook.” As I’ve said before, volume and rushing ability are a quarterback’s best friends for fantasy football. As for his running ability, Pickett isn’t your run-of-the-mill pocket passer. In Pickett’s scouting report, Joe Marino noted Pickett’s overlooked athleticism.
“While he wasn’t often used on designed runs at Pitt, his mobility is a notable strength of his game and he picks his spots well in terms of when to take off with the football on a passing play,” said Marino.
Suddenly, Pickett’s Dynasty value looks solid in Seattle. It looks even better when you remember to whom Pickett could be throwing the ball. As long as D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett remain in Seattle, Pickett could at least carve out a reliable floor in fantasy. I still like the other three teams as better long-term spots for Pickett but the Seahawks seem like a fair spot for Pickett to make an early fantasy impact.