Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: 2021 Preseason, Volume I

Every week during the NFL season, Sports Illustrated Senior Fantasy Analyst Michael Fabiano joins Sports360AZ’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

This time, Fabiano joined the Brad Cesmat Show to discuss pre-season happenings around the league. Here are some highlights from our most recent conversation (Aug. 6) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

What Is Your Recommended Strategy For Drafting Quarterbacks?

“I’ll never get [Mahomes]. I won’t get Josh Allen this year either. What happens for me is either a guy like Lamar, Dak or Kyler, I can get them in the sixth or seventh round, or I’ll wait and I’ll oftentimes go back to back. So maybe I’ll wait until the eighth round to take Jalen Hurts, for example, and then in the ninth round take Joe Burrow. Every year the position has guys who bust out who were not early round picks.”

Who Are Two Or Three Players You’re Struggling To Get A Read On?

“I’ve been going back and forth on Saquon Barkley. I had him in my top five, and then there’s news that he might not be ready for week one, so I moved him down to eight or nine. Then Ian Rapoport comes out today and says that they might not have him until week three, so I keep moving Saquon down. At this point he’s barely a first-round pick. The talent is there, and inevitably I’m sure he’ll be fine, but if you lose the first couple games of the season, that’s going to knock a guy down a few spots.

The same thing is true with Michael Thomas. I don’t know if I want any shares of him. He had a bad year in 2020, was injured a lot of the year, and then didn’t have ankle surgery until June. Sean Payton didn’t seem thrilled about that either, and now we’re not sure, maybe he comes back after their bye, which would mean week seven. I don’t know if I want to sit on a guy that long. Thomas is probably a draft-and-stash three for me.

In terms of other players I’m not sure about, Joe Mixon. I love the workload, they don’t have anybody behind him on the depth chart that’s going to take away any of those carries or receptions out of the backfield, but the offensive line has got question marks and he was not durable last year. He’s a second-round pick across the board. I’d probably still take a chance on him.”