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NFL Draft 2013: Which players represent the best fantasy value?

Looking ahead, we try to figure out which potential first round picks are best for your fantasy team.


So, it's April, and you probably can't stop thinking about that fantasy draft of yours that's coming up in ... August.

It's alright, you have no life. Neither do we, that's why we're writing about this for you.

With the NFL Draft coming up on Thursday, April 25, it's a good time to take a look at some probable first round selections according to our latest mock and see how they fit into your fantasy plans going forward.

Of course, rookies are much more attractive if you're in a keeper/dynasty league, where you can cultivate a great team over a long period of time. However, rookies can still be useful in single-year leagues as surprising value toward the middle and bottom of the draft.

Without further conjecture, let's take a look at some of the prized prospects:

Geno Smith - West Virginia

Smith is a gamble as anything more than a backup quarterback. As a rookie, Smith is probably going to throw a lot of high percentage passes for not a lot of yardage. Depending on what team takes him, he may not even start to begin the year.

Tavon Austin - West Virginia

Austin is a playmaker all the way and worth drafting without question. Any team that takes Austin will put him in a multitude of sitautions to break games open with his elite speed and elusive ability. Look for Austin to be in the rookie of the year running.

Cordarrelle Patterson - Tennessee

Patterson is a tricky prospect to predict with plenty of pundits on either side of the fence. However, as a first round pick Patterson will have his chance to make an immediate impact and thus is worthy of a late round flyer in deep leagues.

Tyler Eifert - Notre Dame

Eifert is definitely a draftable player at a position that isn't exactly loaded with premium fantasy options. Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates are aging and outside of a few studs like Jason Witten and Vernon Davis, their aren't great players available.

DeAndre Hopkins - Clemson

The man caught 18 touchdowns last season and went for 1,405 yards. Does that not scream playmaker from the rooftops? Hopkins is one of the most underrated players in the draft and it wouldn't surprise many if Hopkins can burst onto the scene.

Keenan Allen - California

Allen is very much in the mold of another man who played at California, DeSean Jackson. When he gets the ball in his hands, Allen can make things happen when other players can't. Look for Allen late in your draft and hope he reaches his potential quickly.

E.J. Manuel - Florida State

Manuel is a developmental prospect and it's probably not wise to take him in your draft. Nobody is going to select the ex-Seminole, so stand pat and if he surprises, snag him off the free agent list.

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