We recently held a 12-team startup Dynasty mock draft with members of our CBS Sports staff. Many of you are getting involved in Dynasty leagues, which is awesome, and we wanted to give you an example of what a real draft might look like.
It's different than most of the seasonal mock drafts we usually do because the goal is different. You want to win in 2019, obviously. But you also want to be good for the future.
And that's where you have to find the right balance with your roster. It could lead to some tough decisions.
For example, in a seasonal league, David Johnson is expected to be drafted ahead of guys like Joe Mixon and Dalvin Cook. But in a dynasty league, Mixon (22) and Cook (23) potentially have more long-term value than Johnson, who is 27.
Julio Jones also is expected to be drafted ahead of Odell Beckham, JuJu Smith-Schuster and Michael Thomas. But Jones is 30, and Beckham (26), Smith-Schuster (22) and Thomas (26) have youth on their side.
In this mock draft -- which was 22 rounds, PPR and featured a starting lineup with three receivers, two flex spots (RB/WR/TE) and one Superflex spot where you can use a quarterback -- you can see how several managers favored youth over proven commodities. While Johnson and Jones fell to Round 2, the most glaring selection came from Ben Gretch with the first pick in Round 3 with D.J. Moore.
Ben drafted Moore ahead of other receivers like Antonio Brown, Adam Thielen, A.J. Green and T.Y. Hilton, among others. Moore was the No. 11 receiver off the board. While I don't agree with this pick, I understand the selection. Moore, 22, could be a star as the No. 1 receiver for the Panthers for many years to come, but I would not have drafted him this early.
Ben leaned on young players more than anyone else in this draft, and he could have an exceptional team in the future. He drafted rookie receivers in N'Keal Harry (Round 6), Andy Isabella (Round 10) and J.J. Arcega-Whiteside (Round 13), and he has rookie running backs Tony Pollard (Round 17) and Trayveon Williams (Round 19), who could play pivotal roles on their respective teams.
Ben also has young tight ends in Dallas Goedert (Round 11) and Darren Waller (Round 20), although he also has Vance McDonald (Round 14). And Ben drafted Baker Mayfield in Round 5 as the No. 3 quarterback off the board. Mayfield (24) is younger than Andrew Luck (29) and Aaron Rodgers (35), so you can understand that move.
Ben's likely starting lineup is Mayfield at quarterback, Saquon Barkley and Royce Freeman at running back, Moore, Stefon Diggs and Tyler Boyd at receiver and McDonald at tight end. He has Dak Prescott at Superflex and likely Harry and Will Fuller at his other flex spots. If Ben doesn't win this league in 2019, he could have established his roster to be successful for many years to come depending on the moves he makes in the offseason. That's one approach you can take in a startup dynasty league.
Another approach in this format is still relying on veterans to try and win now, especially when they fall to favorable spots in the draft. Two owners seemed to do this and built competitive rosters for 2019.
Adam Aizer took advantage of Johnson being there in Round 2, and he got Julian Edelman in Round 6, Mark Ingram in Round 7 and Jared Cook in Round 13. He still managed to get younger players with upside as well, including Deshaun Watson in Round 4, Dante Pettis in Round 5, Mecole Hardman in Round 8 and Marquise Brown in Round 10.
Adam likely has a starting lineup of Watson at quarterback, Johnson and Mixon at running back, Edelman, Pettis and Tyreek Hill at receiver and Cook at tight end. He will likely play Mitchell Trubisky at Superflex, Ingram at one flex spot and potentially Brown, DeSean Jackson or D'Onta Foreman at the other flex position.
Michael Kiser did something similar with proven players. After starting his team with Cook, Mike Evans and Thielen, he grabbed Hilton in Round 4 and Devonta Freeman in Round 5. Hilton and Freeman will typically go earlier in a seasonal league. Michael also drafted Allen Robinson in Round 8, Latavius Murray in Round 13 and Jordan Reed in Round 15.
He still managed to get younger players with upside in Courtland Sutton (Round 9), A.J. Brown (Round 10), Kahale Warring (Round 17) and Terry McLaurin (Round 18), but the strength of his team is with his veterans.
Michael likely has a starting lineup of Jared Goff at quarterback, Cook and Freeman at running back, Evans, Thielen and Hilton at receiver and Reed at tight end. He will likely play Matthew Stafford at Superflex, and Sammy Watkins and Robinson at the other flex positions.
As for my team, I tried to take a balanced approach of veterans and younger players, but I did let age be the tiebreaker. From the No. 2 spot, I started with Christian McCaffrey, George Kittle and Aaron Jones, which I was thrilled with.
My receiving corps is extremely young with Calvin Ridley, Mike Williams, Curtis Samuel, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Michael Gallup, Diontae Johnson and Trey Quinn all in their third season or less. My only veteran receivers are Donte Moncrief and Emmanuel Sanders, and I love the upside of this group.
Ridley and Williams look poised for stardom after the way they played in 2018, and I wouldn't be surprised if Samuel is better than Moore this season. And I was able to draft Samuel in Round 10. I also could have the No. 2 receiver in Green Bay with Valdes-Scantling and the No. 2 receiver in Pittsburgh with Moncrief.
Aside from McCaffrey and Jones, the rest of my running backs are Ronald Jones, Miles Sanders, Bryce Love and Rodney Anderson. I'm expecting Jones to be the best running back in Tampa Bay this season and be much better than his rookie campaign in 2018, and I'm excited about Sanders as a rookie in Philadelphia.
Love and Anderson are more about 2020 and beyond if healthy. Love could potentially be the starter in Washington if Derrius Guice struggles or gets hurt again, and Anderson could eventually replace Giovani Bernard in Cincinnati as the No. 2 running back behind Mixon. Love and Anderson are coming off ACL injuries from 2018, but both are highly talented and worth late-round selections in this format.
My starting lineup is likely Luck at quarterback, McCaffrey and Aaron Jones at running back, Ridley, Williams and Samuel at receiver and Kittle at tight end. I have Jimmy Garoppolo at Superflex and likely Ronald Jones and Miles Sanders at the other flex positions unless Valdes-Scantling or Moncrief force their way into one or both of these spots.
In this league, all rushing and receiving touchdowns are worth six points, and quarterback touchdowns are worth five points. We award one point for every 10 yards rushing and receiving and one point for every 25 yards passing. We also award one point per reception. We feature a starting lineup of QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, TE, SUPERFLEX (QB/RB/WR/TE), 2 FLEX (RB/WR/TE) and DST. There also are 11 reserve spots for a 22-round draft.
Our draft order is as follows:
- Ben Gretch, Fantasy Editor
- Jamey Eisenberg, Senior Fantasy Writer
- Meron Berkson, CBS Sports HQ Producer
- Heath Cummings, Senior Fantasy Writer
- Andrew Baumhor, CBS Sports HQ Producer
- Jack Capotorto, CBS Sports HQ Producer
- Chris Towers, Senior Editor, Fantasy
- Will Brinson, NFL Writer
- Adam Aizer, Podcast Host
- Tommy Tran, CBS Sports HQ Host
- Michael Kiser, Director, Video Production
- R.J. White, NFL Editor