2024 Dynasty Rookie Draft Pick 4 Strategy: How to Draft and Who to Target at the 1.04

How to draft from the 4 spot in 2024 dynasty rookie drafts. Keon Coleman.
You're building around a stud at the 1.04.

First things first, please realize that rookie drafts always have caveats that don’t exist for re-draft fantasy football leagues.

DRAFT STRATEGY FOR PICK 4 IN 2024 ROOKIE DRAFTS: MY PRE-DRAFT PLAN

There are two ways to approach a rookie draft: team need or best available. Generally, I advocate for drafting by team need in a dynasty league. If this supplemental draft is the only way to add relevant talent to your team this year, focus on what you need.

This doesn’t mean you should be foolish about your pick, either. If the position or player you are targeting is a guy, you know you can get half a round later, trade back, and acquire more draft assets. Otherwise, identify who your guys are and go get them. 

For the purposes of this rookie draft, however, I took the approach of taking the best available players at pick No. 4. In this scenario, I don’t have an actual team, so I don’t have any pre-existing needs in the draft. If you already feel good, just take the best players (like I tried to).

In our mock draft, we followed Superflex rules, so quarterbacks were the priority. If your league is not Superflex, don’t worry about quarterbacks unless one falls to you that you love. Otherwise, the strength of the 2024 rookie class is clearly the WR position, so it makes sense to prioritize grabbing one early, if possible. 

Read more: “How to draft” from the… 1 | 2 | 3 | 45 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 910 | 11 | 12 spot

Here’s how it went for me at pick 4…

PICK 1.04: JAYDEN DANIELS, QB, WASHINGTON COMMANDERS

As I said earlier, this was a Superflex mock, so I prioritized QB early based on that setting. If this were not Superflex, I would have prayed for one of the top three receivers to fall to me at 1.04. If they didn’t, I would have decided to choose Caleb Williams or Brock Bowers. Otherwise, whoever I was most interested in as WR4 (Brian Thomas, Xavier Worthy, Ladd McConkey, or Keon Coleman here).

I like Keon Coleman, the most in this group, but it’s super close. For that reason, I might lean towards getting the best quarterback, TE, or even RB if you need one. They are more bankable, while I fully expect one or two of the aforementioned WRs to end up busting. I was fully expecting to be choosing between Rome Odunze and Malik Nabers, as I thought Jayden Daniels would be gone already. I was super excited to see him still on the board.

It is hard to rate Caleb Williams as anything but the QB1 in this rookie class, although it has more to do with his surrounding cast. I think Williams has some leadership question marks that could eventually blow up in the Bears’ face. They put as much talent as possible in front of Williams to succeed, though, so I still lean toward his direction for the first quarterback to take. Not far behind, however, is Jayden Daniels for me.

Daniels is this year’s dual-threat quarterback. It doesn’t take a big leap of logic to see how his running ability could vault Daniels to top-tier QB status quickly. Looking at the perennial leaders in the position, we see guys like Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts, and Lamar Jackson, who all share the trait of running the ball. In a sadly too short glimpse, we also saw that Anthony Richardson flashed some of this same production last year. It would stand to reason that Daniels could join this group based on his legs, as soon as this year.

The second thing for Daniels is that he has some solid pieces around him: Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson, a promising rookie TE in Ben Sinnott, and a solid backfield with Brian Robinson Jr. and Austin Ekeler. These are fine pieces to work with for Daniels. The O-line is definitely nothing to be excited about, but sometimes that works out okay for run-first QBs anyway.

Jayden Daniels is a no-brainer pick for me early in Superflex drafts for fantasy purposes. I got him at 1.04, but I would have been happy with him at 1.02 or 1.03.

PICK 2.04: KEON COLEMAN, WR, BUFFALO BILLS

When talking about potential WR options after the top three are off the board, Keon Coleman is probably my No. 4 option. So, to get Coleman at 2.04, I was more than okay with that!

I can’t fault others for choosing Xavier Worthy or Brian Thomas over Coleman; it is entirely possible that both will be better than him. However, I think almost every player in the NFL becomes who they are based on a combination of talent and team context.

If a player is super talented but the team fit isn’t there, then that player doesn’t get there more often than not. If a player is a decent talent but ends up in a perfect spot, I have more confidence in their success.

In the case of Coleman, he does not have the same natural speed as a guy like Worthy, nor do I think he has the route-running ability of a guy like Ladd McConkey. However, I think he has enough talent to maximize his opportunity. He will play with one of the best QBs in the league, Josh Allen. He also gets to play for a Bills team that has lost Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis, the two top pass catchers from last year. There’s a wide-open target totem pole alongside Dalton Kincaid in Buffalo, especially on the perimeter.

The team may commit to running a bit more. They will also likely spread the ball around more rather than focus on one main pass catcher like they have in the past. That’s still fine for me. I expect Coleman to get a lot of looks, even when sharing targets with Kincaid and Khalil Shakir.

This second-round rookie pick should hit the ground running in year one!

PICK 3.04: AUDRIC ESTIME, RB, DENVER BRONCOS

I don’t want to go into too much detail here on Audric Estime, as I intend to provide a future rookie write-up on him. I will say that Estime is the guy I hope to leave all my rookie drafts with in the third round.

While Daniels and Coleman were guys I took because I just wanted to take the best available player, Estime is the one guy I came into the draft having to get in the third round. 

A few other third-round RBs (Kimani Vidal, Ray Davis) are also great buys, and I wouldn’t have felt bad taking them either. However, Estime is a guy I am taking a stand on and, as such, a guy that I very much need on my team.

Wolf disagrees and thinks this is the worst pick of the draft (which I would contend when you’re 29 picks into a rookie draft, there isn’t really a “worst pick” at that point; it’s just about getting guys you have a good feeling on in the 3rd and 4th rounds). However, I think Wolf and I will agree to disagree here. 

Again, I won’t go into detail with a detailed write-up coming soon. The short version of why I’m all-in on Estime is Sean Payton. Coincidentally, that’s the reason that Wolf is out on him! I believe this is Payton’s first year to be able to really shape this team the way he wants to, and Estime fits a familiar role that we saw for years in New Orleans.

In Payton’s recreation of his NO offense in Denver, I expect Estime to step into the hammer RB role we’ve seen play out many times before. That role always produces fantasy gold. As a third-round pick in the rookie draft, I’m fine with taking a chance here to get a piece of that type of RB production.

PICK 4.04: THEO JOHNSON, TE, NY GIANTS

Tight end can be a bit of a crapshoot. It is typically one of the lowest-producing positions in fantasy football. The flip side is that you don’t need a ton of production to end up with a semi-useful second TE asset in a dynasty league. That’s exactly what I think I got here at pick 4.04 with Theo Johnson

Johnson has work to do to become a consistent producer at the NFL level. However, he was selected for a few reasons. First, he’s 6’6”, 260 lbs, and is a freak athlete. We’re dealing with an athletic specimen here. I always like to see that when looking for a TE who can grab a few red zone touchdowns for our squad, which it seems like Johnson can do.

Second, the Giants selected him because Darren Waller gave all the smoke signals that he would retire. If/when Waller retires this year, that leaves a spot for Johnson to step in with only Daniel Bellinger in his way to meaningful playing time. Most rookie TEs do not pop off right away (Sam LaPorta is an anomaly, not an expectation). I do not expect Johnson to be a beast right away.

In fact, my expectations are tempered a bit as I wasn’t looking for a world-beater here with this pick. My goal with taking a guy like Johnson is to have a TE who is a starter at the NFL level to back up my TE1 that I can get lucky with and score a TD here and there. This is all possible with Johnson in year one out of the gate.

Realistically, that’s about all you can usually expect from a backup TE. Johnson was the safest pick at TE, assuming I had a balanced roster and just wanted a guy who could step in and be a starter on day one.

If shooting for upside instead, I recommend taking Jared Wiley, who went undrafted in our mock. Wiley is the heir apparent to Travis Kelce, who may not matter much for the next year or two but may be in position to be an absolute beast once Kelce retires. Again, it depends on roster construction, so I opted for safety over risk, but I would have been happy with either.

SUMMARY: POST-DRAFT THOUGHTS AND PICK 4 STRATEGY RECAP

At the end of the draft, I feel pretty good about what I constructed over these four rounds. I aimed to hit the best available while getting a piece of every position. Again, if I were coming in with a need, I would have targeted that need. In this case, assuming a balanced team, I think I left with potential difference-makers in every round. I was especially excited to get Daniels and Coleman in the first two rounds. I also got my third-round target in every league in Estime. Good draft, overall!

As a reminder, assess your team’s needs first. Decide on your guys to fill those needs. Don’t be afraid to reach a little if it means you’re getting your guy. Otherwise, try to stick with the best available talent and pile up good assets. Pick No. 4 seems to be a great place, no matter what position you are targeting.

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