Every year thousands of people signup to play fantasy football. Whether it’s a work league, a league with your friends and family or a league with a bunch of random people, fantasy football is always one of the best parts of the NFL season.
Some people will spend hours on hours researching the best players to draft while some players go for a more casual style and build a team with their favorite players. Personally, I like to make sure I have a minimum of one New Orleans Saints player, and I almost never draft a player from another NFC South team. So today, we’re going to look at the average draft position (ADP) of the top Saints players according to ESPN’s fantasy football trends, so you don’t miss them in your upcoming drafts.
Chris Olave - ADP 42.7
Chris Olave seems to be the consensus top Saints player being drafted in most PPR fantasy leagues, and you can get him around pick 42. He’s currently being taken as the WR16, sandwiched between Deebo Samuel and Amari Cooper.
Before his rookie season, Olave was being taken at the end of most fantasy drafts, but after posting 1,000 yards in 2022, he’s risen into the top-20 pass catchers in fantasy football. With Michael Thomas’ health still a big question mark and Derek Carr taking over at QB, Olave is primed for another huge season.
Looking for a fantasy football steal? Meet Chris Olave! With Derek Carr's deep ball expertise (5th in NFL with 72 Deep Balls), Olave shined as a rookie sensation, averaging 0.33 Fantasy points per snap! Highest for a rookie since 2015. Carr's track record with top targets… pic.twitter.com/z0nxzREzt0— Nolan Foster (@NoleFlexZone) June 28, 2023
Alvin Kamara - ADP 81.4
Ever since his sophomore season, Kamara has been one of the most sought out fantasy players. From 2017-2020, he was good for over 300 fantasy points nearly every season. Unfortunately, since Drew Brees’ departure, his production has slipped to an average of 223 points per season.
This year, there’s a lot of question marks surrounding Kamara. He is potentially going to be suspended for an unknown amount of time, the Saints added two more highly capable running backs this offseason and we don’t know how he’ll be utilized with Derek Carr at the helm. Drafting Kamara is a risky decision for fantasy owners, but if his suspension is short and Pete Carmichael can get him more involved in the offense, he could be a mid-round steal.
Michael Thomas - 97.4
Thomas is another high risk, high reward player for fantasy. Everyone knows about his injury history, having just played just 10 games the past three seasons. We saw flashes of his old self at the beginning of 2022 but was put on IR to never be seen again after a toe injury.
When he’s healthy, Thomas is one of the best receivers in the league. The last time we saw Thomas play a full season, he broke the NFL record for most receptions in a single season. If we can get a full season out of MT in 2023, he could end up as the biggest steal in fantasy in 2023.
Jamal Williams - ADP 107.5
Williams is the second Saints running back on this list, and you can get him just after the 100th pick in your draft. Williams, the league leader in rushing touchdowns in 2022, has proven he can carry the workload of a RB1 last season. If Kamara gets suspended, there’s a big opportunity for Williams to get a heavy workload early in the fantasy season.
Currently, Williams is being drafted after guys such as AJ Dillon and Samaje Perine. Even if Kamara isn’t suspended, he should get a lot of looks in red zone situations where he thrived in Detroit last season.
Saints D/ST - ADP 136.6
Surprisingly, the Saints defense and special teams is the next “player” on the Saints being taken in fantasy drafts. They’re currently the seventh defense being taken off the board behind defenses such as the Jets, Dolphins and Cowboys. The Saints have been one of the top defenses in the league the past few years, so if you’re one of the fantasy players who likes to stick to one defense all year, they might not be a bad pick up for your team.
Juwan Johnson - ADP 159.9
We’re getting into the late rounds of the draft now, and Juwan Johnson is still sitting on the board. The Saints number one tight end could end up being one of the best value picks late in drafts. We know from his time in Vegas that Derek Carr likes to utilize his tight ends, and the former WR turned TE showed flashes of greatness last season. If you’re looking for a good backup or you held off on drafting a tight end this long, you can get Johnson after guys like Greg Dulcich and Gerald Everett.
Derek Carr - ADP 164.2
Probably the most surprising player on this list is Derek Carr going as QB22 in ESPN drafts right now. Everyone knows Carr had a down year last season, but he still put up 3,522 yards and 24 touchdowns in 2022. He’s being taken behind the likes of Bryce Young, Kenny Pickett, Russell Wilson and Anthony Richardson.
Since signing with the Saints, Carr has said he feels rejuvenated and is ready to win. He has more weapons at his disposal in New Orleans than he ever has with the Raiders. Carr is one of the best backup options you can find this late in the draft, so go grab him if he’s sitting there at the end of your draft.
Derek Carr:”Being in this building has rejuvenated me. It’s been a breath of fresh air.” #Saints— Rod Walker (@RodWalkerNola) May 23, 2023
Other notable Saints players
Taysom Hill - 168.7
Kendre Miller - 169.2
Wil Lutz - 169.7
Rasheed Shahid - 169.9
Foster Moreau - 169.9
These guys are either being drafted in the last round of drafts or are going undrafted. Kendre Miller and Rasheed Shahid are two guys who have a ton of upside but are in crowded rooms. They could be worth a late round draft pick/waiver wire pick up if someone gets injured or suspended.
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