Fantasy Football Advice – Players to Avoid

By Steve Tsilimos | Posted 1 year ago

There is no worse feeling than drafting someone early, and they turn out to be a bust. It’s worse when the experts were predicting that player to not live up to his ADP, but you did not do your research or did not listen. 


A bust in fantasy terms is someone who does not perform to where they were drafted. For example, if you draft Cooper Kupp as WR1 with the No. 3 overall pick and he finishes outside the top-five WRs, then he would be considered a bust. Now in that same scenario, if he finishes as WR3, then he would not be a bust, but in hindsight, you drafted him too early. 


Drafting a championship-caliber team is all about finding upside attached to a price point. Some of the players on the list below are great football players and will probably have good seasons, but I do not want them on my fantasy team for what they cost. If the players listed below fall down a few rounds, then they could be worth the draft capital.


Hypothetically I have put together a team that someone could draft. There is a player below for each of the first seven rounds that I am avoiding at their current ADP. 

The All-Bust Team – Do not draft unless they fall

QB Joe BurrowBengals (ADP58/QB6)

I am a huge fan of Joe Burrow and think Cincinnati will have another good year. I just find it hard to justify taking Burrow as QB6. The Bengals want to stay balanced on offense, and Burrow is not much of a threat to run. His 8.9 yards per attempt suggest serious regression, and he finished as QB9 last year. Burrow ended the year torching defenses and still only finished as a top-6 fantasy quarterback three times in 2021.

RB David MontgomeryBears (ADP35/RB18)

Montgomery is currently being taken in the late third round as an RB2. His usage last season during the 13 games that he was healthy is why he is being drafted this high (80-90% usage). The Bears' offense under new OC Luke Getsy will run an outside-zone scheme that is better suited for RB Khalil HerbertRB Aaron Jones never received more than 60% usage while playing for Getsy in Green BayThe Bears backfield will be more of a committee this year and could eventually switch to the more explosive Herbert as their starter. I simply do not see the upside for Montgomery in the third round.

RB Antonio GibsonCommanders (ADP57/RB25)

Antonio Gibson has been falling down draft boards since camp began. An early rounder a year ago, and now he can be found in the fifth round of drafts. However, it will be fascinating to see what happens this week after Brian Robinson was wounded in the carjacking/robbery attempt. Gibson has not impressed as the starter and was in the dog house for fumbling He had already lost passing duties to RB J.D. McKissicwho re-signed with the team. Gibson has averaged over 11 fpts/gm in his first two seasons and finished as RB10 last season, so people have good reason to draft him here. I am not one of them.

WR Deebo Samuel49ers (ADP18/WR6)

I love Deebo Samuel as a real-life football player, but I struggle to see his path to WR6 this season. Samuel has already expressed concerns about his rushing usage, so I expect his yards and TDs to decline. Eight rushing TDs in 2021 seems unattainable in 2022, especially with Trey Lance at QB. Deebo has been the yards-after-catch king the past two seasons, but his 11.6 yards per target should also regress this year. In the two full games with Lance at QB last season, Samuel caught six total passes. Samuel should be taken no higher than the third round.

WR Diontae JohnsonSteelers (AD42/WR16)

I had many shares of Diontae Johnson the past two seasons, and it paid off for me. He amassed over 310 targets over that time. Ben Roethlisberger had a noodle arm and loved throwing it underneath to his favorite target. This season the Steelers will have a new QB, and there is a lot of competition for targets as they try to keep defenses guessing. Johnson is one of the toughest receivers to guard, but I don’t see him racking up 1,161 and eight TDs again this year. It doesn’t matter if it’s Mitch Trubisky or Kenny Pickett as his QB, I think Johnson is going a little high in drafts this year. 

TE Travis KelceChiefs (ADP14/TE1)

Kelce is going in the first round of some drafts, and I honestly get it because he has been as consistent as they come since 2016 (surpassing 1,000 yards receiving every year). WR Tyreek Hill’s trade to Miami has fantasy managers thinking that Kelce is going to get even more targets. I think the trade was to mix things up so Andy Reid can keep defenses guessing this year. Kelce will be 33 years old this year and has already had outrageous usage the past seven seasons. I do not think the plan in KC is to increase his target share and force feed him the ball as defense key on him. He finished as TE2 last season, and I think he is going to drop a few more spots this year. 

Flex Amari CooperBrowns (ADP68/WR26)

The Cowboys scored the most points per game (31.2) and had the most offensive yards in 2021. Still, their No. 1 WR, Amari Cooper, only finished as fantasy WR27. This summer, he is being drafted as WR26, and now he plays for the run-first Browns. To make things worse, Cleveland will be led by QB Jacoby Brissett for most of the year. Even when Deshaun Watson returns from his suspension in Week 12, he will not have taken that many reps with Cooper. Cooper has been consistent throughout his career in Dallas, and he should still be able to provide solid output on the field with the Browns. With that being said, there is nothing telling me he can outperform his last two seasons in Dallas. I won’t draft Cooper before the eighth round.


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