Roster changes and personnel moves are happening all the time in the NFL as the offseason rolls on, and we like doing mock drafts to reflect that. Recently, the Panthers got a new quarterback in Sam Darnold, the Bengals lost a running back in Giovani Bernard, the Ravens got a new receiver in Sammy Watkins and more information continues to come out regarding Deshaun Watson.
In this 0.5 PPR, 12-team mock draft featuring members of our CBS Sports staff, it seems like I selected several players dealing with changes, including Joe Mixon, D.J. Moore, Corey Davis, Mecole Hardman and Watson. I didn't plan on this happening, but it worked out that way.
For example, I drafted Mixon in Round 2 at No. 21 overall, and I was excited to select him as my No. 2 running back along with Saquon Barkley. Mixon could be headed for a big year.
Without Bernard, the hope is Mixon will take on more work in the passing game and deliver on being an elite Fantasy option. The offensive line in Cincinnati added takle Riley Reiff this offseason and could get even better in the NFL Draft -- the Bengals pick at No. 5 overall and could select Oregon tackle Penei Sewell or Northwestern tackle Rashawn Slater -- and Joe Burrow (knee) should return at 100 percent.
This should be an offense ready for a big season, and Mixon could be a star. He might end up being a steal if you can continue to draft him toward the back end of Round 2.
As for Bernard, he went in Round 11, and hopefully he gets the chance for a bigger role on a new team. Samaje Perine, the likely handcuff for Mixon now in Cincinnati, was drafted in Round 14 here.
Moore was my No. 2 receiver behind Tee Higgins, and I drafted him in Round 5. While Darnold has a lot to prove after struggling with the Jets, I expect him to perform at least on par to what Teddy Bridgewater did last season in Carolina, barring a disaster.
That should allow Moore to post similar stats (66 catches, 1,193 yards and four touchdowns on 118 targets), but hopefully he can do even better if Darnold is an upgrade over Bridgewater. Touchdowns continue to hold Moore back (he has 10 total in three seasons), but the Panthers also lost a key weapon in Curtis Samuel, who had 97 targets last year, and they only replaced him with David Moore.
It would be great if D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson, who was drafted in Round 7 here, got even more targets from Darnold in 2021. And again, I'm hopeful Darnold will be good after escaping his disastrous three seasons with the Jets.
Back in New York, the Jets are now expected to replace Darnold with a rookie quarterback, who will likely be BYU's Zach Wilson as the No. 2 overall selection in the NFL Draft. And his No. 1 receiver will likely be Corey Davis, who signed with the Jets as a free agent from the Titans.
I don't want Davis as a starting Fantasy receiver in 2021 even after a solid campaign in 2020 when he had 65 catches for 984 yards and five touchdowns on 92 targets in Tennessee. But I drafted him here in Round 8 as my No. 4 receiver behind Higgins, Moore and Courtland Sutton, and that's fine for how I built this roster. Let's hope Wilson to Davis is a connection we're raving about all year.
In Round 9, I took a flier on Hardman, who will hopefully benefit with Watkins gone. The Chiefs could opt to give Demarcus Robinson more playing time as the starter opposite Tyreek Hill, but Hardman has more upside. If he hits in his third year in the NFL then Hardman could be a borderline Fantasy starter in all leagues.
As for Watkins, he was drafted in Round 12 here. I don't have high expectations for him in Baltimore, but this was a good spot to select him as a Fantasy reserve.
I liked the way I built my Fantasy team with Barkley, Mixon, Antonio Gibson, Benny Snell, Darrel Willams and Todd Gurley at running back, and Higgins, Moore, Sutton, Davis and Hardman at receiver. Dallas Goedert, who I drafted in Round 7, is my tight end, and I love his outlook as long as the Eagles move on from Zach Ertz as expected.
I waited on a quarterback, and Watson was still available in Round 11. It's tricky to determine Watson's Fantasy value right now, and talking about Watson and the serious accusations against him from a Fantasy Football perspective is difficult to do at this time.
Watson has been accused of sexual misconduct by several women, 22 of whom have filed civil lawsuits against him. The NFL is investigating those allegations, and obviously he could face discipline pending that investigation in addition to what might come through the legal system if the claims against him are found to have merit.
There's no point in speculating further than that, but we know you have questions regarding his status for 2021. All we know is that these accusations exist, and that the NFL has been willing to discipline players for off-field misconduct accusations even if the legal system clears them of any wrongdoing.
As such, Watson is going to be a wild card in any Fantasy drafts prior to a ruling or decision made on his playing status for this year. With that in mind, I made sure to draft a second quarterback in Burrow in Round 12.
I would have no problem drafting Burrow as my No. 1 quarterback this year. His 268.8 passing yards per game was No. 7 in the NFL last year, and I expect him to improve in his second season as long as he's healthy after injuring his knee in Week 11 in 2020.
I never expected to get excited about a Fantasy roster featuring three Bengals, but Mixon, Higgins and potentially Burrow could be key contributors on what should be a highly-competitive Fantasy team.
In this league, all touchdowns are worth six points, and we award one point for every 10 yards rushing and receiving and one point for every 25 yards passing. We also award 0.5 points for every reception. We feature a starting lineup of QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, TE, FLEX (RB/WR/TE) and DST. There also are six reserve spots for a 15-round draft.
Our draft order is as follows:
1. Andrew Baumhor, CBS Sports HQ Producer
2. Chris Towers, Senior Editor, Fantasy
3. R.J. White, Managing Editor, SportsLine and CBS Fantasy
4. Jamey Eisenberg, Senior Fantasy Writer
5. Jack Capotorto, CBS Sports HQ Producer
6. Jacob Gibbs, SportsLine Fantasy Analyst
7. Dan Schneier, Fantasy Editor
8. Frank Stampfl, Fantasy Baseball Podcast Host
9. Dave Richard, Senior Fantasy Writer
10. Meron Berkson, CBS Sports HQ Producer
11. Adam Aizer, Podcast Host
12. Heath Cummings, Senior Fantasy Writer
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