Fantasy football is built on the hopes and dreams of owners, and nothing represents hope more than rookies. Drafting rookies is always risky business, especially in re-draft leagues. Keeper leagues and dynasty leagues offer the benefit of deeper foresight for your investment. For everyone else simply looking to capture a strong rookie performance for one season, it’s a bit more difficult. Regardless of the collegiate accolades and the draft pedigree of a player, the reality is that you’re taking a gamble on an unproven pro when drafting a rookie.

The 2018 NFL Draft shows us a big difference between reality football and fantasy football. This year’s draft was loaded at the quarterback position, with five going in the first round. And yet, it would not be surprising if none of those five quarterbacks made a start this season. Well, Josh Rosen would be the exception since Sam Bradford getting injured is one of the few guarantees in life.

In 2018, we see another strong class of running backs at the top of the board. Most notably, Saquon Barkley is getting drafted in the top ten overall. The running backs leads the way, but there are some intriguing sleeper options at wide receiver. Meanwhile, the tight end position is intriguing long-term, but for 2018, we might see limited returns.

Let’s take a look at each skill position, and consider which rookies are the best poised to become fantasy assets for your roster.

Quarterback Running Back Wide Receiver Tight End
1 Lamar Jackson Saquon Barkley D.J. Moore Mike Gesicki
2 Josh Rosen Derrius Guice Calvin Ridley Hayden Hurst
3 Sam Darnold Rashaad Penny Michael Gallup Dallas Goedert
4 Baker Mayfield Sony Michel Anthony Miller Dalton Schultz
5 Josh Allen Ronald Jones Christian Kirk Jordan Akins
Position 1 2 3 4 5
Quarterback Lamar Jackson Josh Rosen Sam Darnold Baker Mayfield Josh Allen
Running Back Saquon Barkley Derrius Guice Rashaad Penny Sony Michel Ronald Jones
Wide Receiver D.J. Moore Calvin Ridley Michael Gallup Anthony Miller Christian Kirk
Tight End Mike Gesicki Hayden Hurst Dallas Goedert Dalton Schultz Jordan Akins