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2023 Fantasy Football PPR Mock Draft 7.0 – Drafting from the #7 Slot

From now until the start of the 2023 NFL season, I have at least one fantasy draft per week. That’s in addition to the drafts I’ve already completed. With at least one preseason game per team in the books, draft values are becoming a bit clearer. The time to mock draft is winding down, so make sure you’re staying prepared for the real thing!

Each week, I will complete a mock draft selecting players from a different draft spot with an analysis as to why I picked each player where and when I did. As I break down the results of each mock draft, I guarantee my reasoning for every pick will help guide your own decision-making process when it comes time to select your teams for the upcoming fantasy football season.

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Picking Seventh Overall in the Seventh Mock Draft

The following mock draft was completed, simulating my strategy and results for a 10-team, 1 quarterback, Points Per Reception league. The hypothetical roster consists of 3 wide receivers, 2 running backs, 1 tight end, and 1 RB/WR/TE Flex position.  I drafted from the seventh overall pick in this mock draft and will make selections from different draft positions each week. For this mock draft, I will break down the first 12 of the total 16 rounds, as many Average Draft Positions, particularly for the later rounds, continuously change as NFL training camps ramp up. As always, I spend my final two picks on a Defense/Special Teams and Kicker so they won’t be included as we focus on individual player analysis.


1.01-         Justin Jefferson (MIN WR)

1.02-        Ja’Marr Chase (CIN WR)

1.03-        Cooper Kupp (LAR WR)

1.04-        Christian McCaffrey (CAR RB)

1.05-        Austin Ekeler (LAC RB)

1.06-        Saquon Barkley (NYG RB)

1.07-       Tyreek Hill (MIA WR)

1.08-        Travis Kelce (KC TE)

1.09-        Bijan Robinson (ATL RB)

1.10-         Derrick Henry (TEN RB)

MY PICK: Tyreek Hill

I have Tyreek Hill behind Travis Kelce and Bijan Robinson in my overall rankings. However, it’s splitting hairs. For this mock draft, I don’t want to start with Kelce again as I did in Mock Draft 6.0. I’ll look to try and take Bijan in one of the final three mock drafts and wait at running back a bit in this one.

That said, Hill is an easy choice here. He is the third-most targeted player at any position from last season. His 170 total targets trailed only Justin Jefferson and Davante Adams. Hill caught passes from three different Dolphins quarterbacks in 2022.

Overall, Miami’s only significant addition to the offense is rookie running back, De’Von Achane. Sure, Jaylen Waddle will see 100+ targets of his own, but a healthy Hill should remain in the overall WR1 conversation assuming Tua Tagovailoa throws his way 150 or more times this season. As always, Tyreek Hill has a massive ceiling.


2.01 –      Stefon Diggs (BUF WR)

2.02-      Ceedee Lamb (DAL WR)

2.03-      Jonathan Taylor (IND RB)

2.04-    A.J. Brown (PHI WR)

2.05-      Rhamondre Stevenson (NE RB)

2.06-      Nick Chubb (CLE RB)

2.07-      Tony Pollard (DAL RB)

2.08-     Amon-Ra St. Brown (DET WR)

2.09-     Davante Adams (LV WR)

2.10-      Patrick Mahomes (KC QB)

MY PICK: A.J. Brown

Admittedly, I have my home league draft this weekend. I am from the Philadelphia area so maybe the excitement of that draft has me selecting A.J. Brown in the second round of my mock draft series for the second week in a row.

It’s by no means a bad pick, but after grabbing Tyreek Hill, it may have been wiser to snag Nick Chubb or even Tony Pollard. The second round is typically where you see who may be taking the “Zero RB” approach as the top tiers of running backs are soon to dry up.


3.01-      Garrett Wilson (NYJ WR)

3.02-     Tee Higgins (CIN WR)

3.03-     Chris Olave (NO WR)

3.04-     Jahmyr Gibbs (DET RB)

3.05-     Josh Allen (BUF QB)

3.06-     Joe Mixon (CIN RB)

3.07-    Jalen Hurts (PHI QB)

3.08-     Josh Jacobs (LV RB)

3.09-     Jaylen Waddle (MIA WR)

3.10-      D.K. Metcalf (SEA WR)

MY PICK: Jalen Hurts

After missing out on the Jalen Hurts/A.J. Brown stack in last week’s mock draft, I make it happen here. Jalen Hurts is my QB1 for the 2023 season and the 26th overall player. In this mock draft, though, he comes off the board as QB3 as the 27th overall player.

Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, and Jalen Hurts are in their own tier of quarterbacks. The three of them scored 24.0 points or more per game last season. Getting the last of the three, and completing the stack, makes sense here. That’s with a lack of running backs on my roster and Hurts’ rushing upside in mind.


4.01-       DeVonta Smith (PHI WR)

4.02-      Mark Andrews (BAL TE)

4.03-      Breece Hall (NYJ RB)

4.04-    Keenan Allen (LAC WR)

4.05-      T.J. Hockenson (MIN TE)

4.06-      Najee Harris (PIT RB)

4.07-      D.J. Moore (CHI WR)

4.08-      Aaron Jones (GB RB)

4.09-      Travis Etienne (JAX RB)

4.10-      Deebo Samuel (SF WR)

MY PICK: Keenan Allen

At this point in the mock draft, I can make a pick for need or go best player available. As far as need, it’s either a running back or a tight end. For me, that’s either Najee Harris, Aaron Jones, or T.J. Hockenson. Instead, I complete my starting wide receiver trio and grab Justin Herbert’s top target in the Los Angeles Chargers passing game.

With a new offensive coordinator in Kellen Moore, there should be fewer targets to Austin Ekeler out of the backfield and more of an emphasis on pushing the ball downfield with the utilization of a strong group of wide receivers. In two of three seasons with Herbert under center, Keenan Allen has led all Chargers in targets. He has back-to-back seasons of 146 and 157 respectively in 2020 and 2021. Assuming he is healthy, Allen should see similar numbers in 2023 making him a massive advantage as this mock draft team’s WR3.

Side note; this is the highest D.J. Moore has gone yet in a mock draft. Catching one screen pass for a 62-yard score on Saturday will do that. Yesterday’s price is not the same as today’s price!


5.01-       Kenneth Walker III (SEA RB)

5.02-      Calvin Ridley (JAX WR)

5.03-      Amari Cooper (CLE WR)

5.04-      Terry McLaurin (WSH WR)

5.05-      Jerry Jeudy (DEN WR)

5.06-      DeAndre Hopkins (TEN WR)

5.07-     Chris Godwin (TB WR)

5.08-      Drake London (ATL WR)

5.09-      Lamar Jackson (BAL QB)

5.10-       Joe Burrow (CIN QB)

MY PICK: Chris Godwin

Now I’m just getting greedy. This is a PPR mock draft so I’m going to target upside centered around high-volume pass catchers. Chris Godwin is averaging 8.01 targets per game in non-rookie seasons. While teammate Mike Evans is in pursuit of his 10th-straight 1,000-yard season, Godwin should still lead the Buccaneers in targets. He’s done so in three of the last four seasons. Assuming Baker Mayfield is the quarterback, he should favor Godwin on quicker, shorter routes while Evans looks to stretch the field. Godwin’s floor is higher than Evans though Evans may have a slight edge with ceiling.


6.01-       George Kittle (SF TE)

6.02-      Dameon Pierce (HOU RB)

6.03-      Mike Williams (LAC WR)

6.04-    Darren Waller (NYG TE)

6.06-      Marquise Brown (ARI WR)

6.06-      Christian Watson (GB WR)

6.07-      Michael Pittman (IND WR)

6.08-      Justin Fields (CHI QB)

6.09-      Justin Herbert (LAC QB)

6.10-       Miles Sanders (CAR RB)

MY PICK: Darren Waller

I think Darren Waller is a fifth-round value. So, if he’s on the board a round later, like he is here, I’m going to take him. At this point, I have five players who have and can continue to lead their respective teams in targets. Now I can put blinders on and focus on collecting a handful of running backs with my next few picks.


7.01-       Brandon Aiyuk (SF WR)

7.02-      Dallas Goedert (PHI TE)

7.03-      Cam Akers (LAR RB)

7.04-      Trevor Lawrence (JAX QB)

7.05-      Christian Kirk (JAX WR)

7.06-      Tyler Lockett (SEA WR)

7.07-     Alexander Mattison (MIN RB)

7.08-      Deshaun Watson (CLE QB)

7.09-      Alvin Kamara (NO RB)

7.10-       Rachaad White (TB RB)

MY PICK: Alexander Mattison

I’m not as high as some on Mattison for the 2023 fantasy football season. That doesn’t mean I’m unwilling to draft him. I think that’s an important lesson here. No player should be off-limits in any draft. Approaching a draft with a predetermined plan to avoid any one player could be a detriment. Don’t let players you swore you wouldn’t select fall into your opponent’s laps at a place of value.

That’s what I tried to avoid here with Alexander Mattison. I need a running back, Mattison seemingly fell a round or two, and the other backs on the board are a bit riskier. There’s still a chance the Minnesota Vikings add one of the big-name veterans, but there are still 65% of last year’s running back carries up for grabs with Dalvin Cook’s departure alone. That’s with Mattison’s 18.3% of carries in consideration as well. If he adds the majority of Cook’s workload to his game, Mattison is a high-end RB2 with weekly RB1 upside.

Mattison has gone as early as the fifth round in some mock drafts I’ve completed. That pick would be better spent on a higher-end wide receiver who will rack up points catching passes. Again though, if a player like Mattison falls as he did here, that presents a major opportunity for a draft steal.


8.01-      Mike Evans (TB WR)

8.02-     Diontae Johnson (PIT WR)

8.03-     Jaxon Smith-Njigba (SEA WR)

8.04-    Javonte Williams (DEN RB)

8.05-     Daniel Jones (NYG QB)

8.06-      J.K. Dobbins (BAL RB)

8.07-      James Conner (ARI RB)

8.08-      David Montgomery (DET RB)

8.09-      James Cook (BUF RB)

8.10-      D’Andre Swift (PHI RB)

MY PICK: Javonte Williams

Until we see Javonte Williams play real snaps and take real hits from defenders, there will always be a cause for concern surrounding the running back position. Hopefully, he does so in the Broncos’ second preseason game this Saturday. New head coach, Sean Payton, claims Williams is 100% following last year’s season-ending knee injury.

If Williams is set up to play Week 1, he is a post-hype (well, post-injury) sleeper to finish as an RB1 in fantasy football. Denver’s new offensive coordinator, Joe Lombardi, was recently in the same role coaching up Austin Ekeler and the Chargers. There’s reason to believe Javonte could log a career-high 50 or more receptions.


9.01-       George Pickens (PIT WR)

9.02-      Isiah Pacheco (KC RB)

9.03-      Gabe Davis (BUF WR)

9.04-      Brian Robinson Jr. (WAS RB)

9.05-      Treylon Burks (TEN WR)

9.06-      Juju Smith-Schuster (NE WR)

9.07-     Dalvin Cook (Free Agent RB)

9.08-      Jahan Dotson (WSH WR)

9.09-      Jordan Addison (MIN WR)

9.10-       A.J. Dillon (GB RB)

My Pick: Dalvin Cook

Sometimes you just have to risk it for the biscuit. With just two running backs on the mock draft roster, and one returning from injury, the upside Cook brings to the table when he does sign somewhere is just too good. He comes off of the board as the RB31 in this mock draft.

We only have reports of Cook’s meetings with AFC East teams. It’s hard to imagine him finishing as the RB31 or worse on any of them. If he ends up on the Jets or Dolphins, he should be a top-20 running back this season, if not better. He’s finished no worse than RB14 on a points-per-game basis in the last three seasons.


10.01-     Jamaal Williams (NO RB)

10.02-    Khalil Herbert (CHI RB)

10.03-    Odell Beckham Jr. (BAL WR)

10.04-   Antonio Gibson (WAS RB)

10.05-    Courtland Sutton (DEN WR)

10.06-    Michael Thomas (NO WR)

10.07-    Zay Flowers (BAL WR)

10.08-    De’Von Achane (MIA RB)

10.09-    Rashaad Penny (PHI RB)

10.10-     Brandin Cooks (DAL WR)

MY PICK: Antonio Gibson

Antonio Gibson remains one of my favorite post-hype sleepers for the 2023 fantasy football season. His role in an Eric Bieniemy run offense should have him very involved in the passing game. Truth be told, if Khalil Herbert was still on the board, I probably would have taken him. He was a consistent 11th- or 12th-round target until this past weekend when he took a check-down pass from Justin Fields 56 yards to the house. Sometimes we just have to roll with the punches of others figuring out certain players have been going much lower in drafts than they should be.


11.01-    Kyle Pitts (ATL TE)

11.02-    Tyler Allgeier (ATL RB)

11.03-    Pat Freiermuth (PIT TE)

11.04-    Evan Engram (JAX TE)

11.05-    David Njoku (CLE TE)

11.06-    Raheem Mostert (MIA RB)

11.07-   Samaje Perine (DEN RB)

11.08-    Zach Charbonnet (SEA RB)

11.09-    Quentin Johnston (LAC WR)

11.10-     Jakobi Meyers (LV WR)

MY PICK: Samaje Perine

Is there a rule on how many players from the same position you can take in a row? No? Okay, great! Samaje Perine is the fifth running back taken in a row for my mock draft team. I have Alexander Mattison and Javonte Williams slated to start Week 1. However, if Dalvin Cook signs somewhere, he would be available to plug in. If he doesn’t, and Williams isn’t ready to go yet either, then I have Samaje Perine here as the lead back for the Denver Broncos. A successful handcuff!

Locking up Perine with Javonte Williams on my roster is the right move. The cost to do so is minimal after building the core of this mock draft team. Denver prioritized the offensive line this offseason adding Mike McGlinchey and Ben Powers from the San Francisco 49ers and Tennessee Titans respectively. I don’t think Perine would have left the Cincinnati Bengals if he didn’t see a path to serious playing time under Sean Payton.


12.01-     Jerick McKinnon (KC RB)

12.02-    Elijah Mitchell (SF RB)

12.03-    Jeff Wilson Jr. (MIA RB)

12.04-  Elijah Moore (CLE WR)

12.05-    Damien Harris (BUF RB)

12.06-    D’Onta Foreman (CHI RB)

12.07-    Skyy Moore (KC WR)

12.08-    Tank Bigsby (JAX RB)

12.09-    Tyler Higbee (LAR TE)

12.10-    Devin Singletary (HOU RB)

MY PICK: Elijah Moore

Drafting Elijah Moore in the 12th feels like the steal of the draft, but there are plenty of solid players coming off of the board here. After watching Tank Bigsby in his first preseason action, I wouldn’t be surprised if he continues to creep up draft boards. Skyy Moore also seems like he will start for the Kansas City Chiefs. The bottom line is these picks matter. In a 12-team league, you’re throwing a bit riskier darts at the board. There are some bullseyes that can be hit this late, though.

After trading a second-round pick for Elijah Moore, he should see a significant role in the Cleveland Browns’ 2023 offense. Deshaun Watson is the best quarterback Moore will have played with entering his third season. That’s after having caught five touchdown passes from four different quarterbacks as a rookie. Moore is fast and shifty making him an asset to any PPR fantasy football team.


QB – Jalen Hurts

RB – Alexander Mattison, Javonte Williams

WR – Tyreek Hill, A.J. Brown, Keenan Allen

TE – Darren Waller

FLEX – Chris Godwin

Bench: Dalvin Cook, Antonio Gibson, Samaje Perine, Elijah Moore, Kenneth Gainwell (13.07), Chigoziem Okonkwo (14.04)

Mock Draft 7.0 CONCLUSION

If you look back round by round, you will see this mock draft was a draft of positional runs. Not only for me, from rounds seven through 11 drafting running backs only, but within each round, as well. Especially with such large tiers of players at each position, it’s no wonder once one of them gets drafted, managers are targeting the rest out of fear of missing out. The seven wide receivers in a row during round five is evidence of that.

I’m still finding quarterbacks and tight ends to be somewhat inconsistent in where they come off of the board. It really depends on who’s drafting. In this mock draft specifically, after the top-tier tight ends went, it took a while for the rest to find a team. Similarly, after Daniel Jones goes in round eight, it’s not until round 14 that the next quarterback was taken. League size and format will have a significant effect on that.

Overall, my first six picks are extremely strong options. Five pass catchers all with the upside, and history, of leading their respective teams in targets. If you’re going to wait to draft a running back, consider targeting Jalen Hurts or even Lamar Jackson, or Justin Fields a little later on. These mobile options at quarterback help make up for any lack of production from your running backs.

For more great rankings and analysis, make sure to check out our 2023 Fantasy Football Draft Kit!

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