2018 Fantasy Football Rookie Roundup: New York Jets

The New York Jets took three 2018 rookie players at traditional fantasy football positions in this year’s NFL Draft. Are any of them worth taking a look at in your fantasy football drafts?

Sam Darnold, Quarterback, Round One
Darnold has the classic look of a quarterback in the pocket. He’s a big, beefy boy à la Andrew Luck. However, he will need every bit of that size as he looks to not die behind the Jets’ offensive line this season. He’s extremely talented and does mostly smart things with the football. I say mostly because his turnover rate is ridiculous: Darnold had twenty interceptions in his last twenty games in college, which isn’t exactly an indicator of success (turnovers are bad). That said, he’s mostly smart about when and where he goes with his passes, he just tries to heroball it far too much for my personal liking. That having been said, he’s no Josh Allen with it. He heroballs out because it works.

The short of it is that Darnold needs some polish before he becomes a fantasy football contributor. That is no knock on him, he seems to have the traits that will make him successful in the NFL. The only problem is that the Jets offense is a dumpster fire, so if he succeeds, it will be despite the weapons around him, not because of them. He’s also deep in the quarterback room, with incumbent Josh McCown and newcomer Teddy Bridgewater likely getting the first and second cracks at the position before he is able to get on the field. Keep him off your draft boards outside of two-quarterback leagues, he’s not lighting anything on fire his rookie season.

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Christopher Herndon, Tight End, Round Four
Herndon isn’t even the best tight end drafted in this division this year, let alone a tight end you can expect to contribute to your fantasy rosters in his inaugural campaign. Those caveats aside, he has drawn comparisons to last year’s phenom flash, Ricky Seals-Jones. Even if he can make it onto the field in passing situations, he’s unlikely to contribute weekly to your roster. He’s likely to take over the Austin Seferian-Jenkins “big guy we throw the ball to because our running backs are godawful” role from last season, so it’s possible he builds some weekly floor in PPR leagues, but don’t count on that.

It’ll take a while for him to get rolling, anyway. Herndon got a DUI in June and is facing league discipline, and he is recovering from a torn MCL. He likely needs his rookie campaign to get his head on straight and to fully recover from his knee injury. Pass.

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Trenton Cannon, Running Back, Round Six
Cannon is currently buried behind Isaiah Crowell, Elijah McGuire, Thomas Rawls and the perpetually “on the verge of breaking out, next year is his year” wonder, Bilal Powell. He is too small to be an every-down back, and his hands are too poor to be a pass catcher. His path to a Jets roster spot in 2018 is through special teams. He’ll likely pop in the preseason against future used car salesmen as he is extremely athletic and fast (hit a 4.40 40-yard dash in pre-draft testing). Still, he just doesn’t have the frame to be an NFL back that gets enough touches to matter in fantasy football.

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For more team rookie previews, check these out:

2018 Rookie Roundup: New England Patriots

2018 Rookie Roundup: Miami Dolphins

2018 Rookie Roundup: Buffalo Bills

About Jeff Krisko

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