2018 Fantasy Football Advice: Saquon Barkley, Sam Darnold
For Giants and Jets fans preparing for their fantasy football drafts, there will obviously be plenty of questions surrounding some of their favorite players and future stars.
With the NFL's preseason in full swing, now is the time for fantasy football leagues around the world to get to drafting, a process that has become a hallowed event that rivals Week 1 of the actual regular season.
It's a time to come together as friends and rivals as you attempt to show your league that you are the most knowledgeable on the block. That, or you've just been roped into a league because your friends desperately need another team to get an even number of players.
Either way, we here at Metro are here to help. If you haven't checked out the front of this issue, now is the time to do so as you begin piecing together a game plan for your team in 2018.
In this section though, we take a more local, New York-centric look at your upcoming fantasy draft.
For New York Giants and Jets fans that are looking to draft some of their favorite players — and we all have that one friend that tries to draft every player from their favorite team — there is some big-time talent for the taking that will be put on display at MetLife Stadium this Autumn.
But the biggest questions from both teams lies with their first-round picks from the 2018 draft as Giants running back Saquon Barkley (No. 2 overall) and Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (No. 3 overall) are billed as future offensive stars for their respective franchises.
Here is what you can expect from both young talents heading into the 2018 season:
For a team that has had one of the worst rushing attacks in football over the past few seasons, Barkley is a godsend to the Giants offense. The Penn State product was considered the best-overall talent of the 2018 draft class thanks to his blend of strength, vision and speed.
He gave the football world an early preview with his first carry of the preseason against the Cleveland Browns when he ripped open a 39-yard run that was generated by a pair of patient cuts in the backfield before exploiting the hole.
Barkley is a dual-threat back that owns a reliable set of hands, offering Eli Manning another receiving option and security blanket should he face the same kind of pressure that he experienced last year behind a struggling offensive line.
He is expected to be a huge part of this offense and is likely a top-10 pick in your fantasy draft.
2018 Fantasy Projections: 1,104 rushing yards, 7 rushing TD's, 55 receptions, 428 receiving yards, 2 receiving TD's, 207.3 fantasy points
While quarterbacks usually start going off the board in the fourth, fifth or sixth rounds, Jets passer Sam Darnold likely won't be going that high, at least for the moment.
It is uncertain whether the new Jets quarterback, who is tabbed as the organization's best hope under center since Joe Namath, will be the man starting come Week 1 considering he'll have to beat out veterans Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater this preseason.
At the moment, despite an impressive debut against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1 of the preseason, Darnold is expected to have a limited role as starter, which might not make a viable option come draft day. However, in a deep league, Darnold could be a late-round pick and stashed away on your bench until he makes his debut.
If not, he will likely be a hot commodity on the waiver wire for a fantasy team with quarterback troubles once he's ready to step in.
2018 Fantasy Projections: 142 completions, 1,587 yards, 9 passing TD's, 8 INT's, 85.8 fantasy points
They won't be the only ones in Giants blue and Jets green that will be getting plenty of looks on draft boards this summer. So let's take a look at the top-10 New York-based football players on fantasy draft boards:
1. Saquon Barkley (NYG)- No. 6 ranked RB, 207.3 fantasy points
2. Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG)- No. 3 ranked WR, 176 fantasy points
3. Evan Engram (NYG)- No. 5 ranked TE, 107.4 fantasy points
4. Robby Anderson (NYJ)- No. 34 ranked WR, 113.7 fantasy points
5. Isaiah Crowell (NYJ)- No. 32 ranked RB, 122.5 fantasy points
6. Sterling Shepard (NYG)- No. 46 ranked WR, 99.1 fantasy points
7. Eli Manning (NYG)- No. 23 ranked QB, 226.6 fantasy points
8. Bilal Powell (NYJ)- No. 46 ranked RB, 89.3 fantasy points
9. Josh McCown (NYJ)- No. 34 ranked QB, 120.6 fantasy points
10. Sam Darnold (NYJ)- No. 35 ranked QB, 85.8 fantasy points
*Fantasy projections courtesy of FantasyPros.com