Day one of the 2012 NFL Draft is in the books, a first round split almost right down the middle between offense and defense. But fantasy leaguers will want to focus on the 11 “skill” position players who heard their name called by Roger Goodell Thursday night in New York City. Here’s a rundown of those picks and an early look at their fantasy prospects.
Day Two Fantasy Fallout »
1.01 - QB Andrew Luck, Colts
The post-Peyton era officially begins, and Luck won’t be sitting behind Drew Stanton. Indy’s in full-on rebuilding mode, but at least Luck will have Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie to work with. The Colts will be a bad team, giving Luck the opportunity to pad his stats while playing from behind. Without the rushing numbers Cam Newton used to pad his stats Luck is still a long shot to be an immediate fantasy factor, but he’ll at least have a weekly opportunity to get you points and there’s no denying his dynasty potential as well.
1.02 - QB Robert Griffin III, Redskins
Mike Shanahan gets his mobile quarterback, and Dan Snyder adds Pierre Garçon and Josh Morgan to Griffin’s receiving corps via free agency after packaging all of Washington’s draft picks to move into position to draft the Heisman winner. Now fantasy owners have to wonder if Griffin can produce Michael Vick numbers, Cam Newton numbers, or merely better-than-Rex-Grossman numbers. Newton’s success and Griffin’s Vick-like speed give the Redskins’ rookie immediate fantasy upside as well as the obvious dynasty value of a new franchise QB.
1.03 - RB Trent Richardson, Browns
Vikings GM Rick Spielman created a market for Richardson, so the Browns tossed a few late-round picks at Minnesota to ensure they ended up with the feature back their offense so desperately needs. Richardson walks immediately into 20-plus touches a game—what, he’s going to share with oft-injured Montario Hardesty or Brandon Jackson?—a workload that vaults him into immediate fantasy consideration. If Peyton Hillis can produce 1,500 combo yards and score a dozen touchdowns with a similar, perhaps lesser, supporting cast and Richardson now fills the Adrian Peterson role in Brad Childress’ offense, perhaps we have an exception to the “rookie running backs are no longer a big deal” theory.
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