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Tough Decisions

Wed May 30 2:01pm ET
By JEFF PAUR @jeffpaur
Sr Fantasy Writer

It is a difficult call every year to figure out the position to select early in your draft. And these are really make or break picks for many fantasy teams. If you miss out on a first-round pick, having a successful season is going to be a lot harder for your fantasy team. We thought it might be a good idea to look back at picks from the past three seasons and see the positions that were easiest to predict, comparing ADP numbers to end of the season fantasy ranking. By looking at these numbers, it will give you an idea of the positions that you need to hit on early in your draft. You will find the numbers to be interesting and maybe not what you expected. Here we go. . . .

First up, we will look at the quarterback position. These numbers might not tell you quite as much since the position is shallow and figuring out the top players at the quarterback spot might not be quite as hard. But even with that said, there have been plenty of misses with the top-10 quarterbacks the past few seasons.

ADP	2015		RANK	ADP	2016		RANK	ADP	2017		RANK	
 1    Andrew Luck   	28         1    Aaron Rodgers  	 1	 1    Aaron Rodgers	31	
 2    Aaron Rodgers    	 7         2    Cam Newton   	18	 2    Tom Brady 	 2
 3    Drew Brees    	 6         3    Andrew Luck  	 4	 3    Drew Brees   	10
 4    Peyton Manning   	32         4    Russell Wilson  10	 4    Matt Ryan		14
 5    B. Roethlisberger 20         5    Drew Brees   	 2	 5    Russell Wilson	 1
 6    Russell Wilson     3         6    B. Roethlisberg  16	 6    Cam Newton	 3
 7    Matt Ryan   	18         7    Tom Brady   	 20	 7    Marcus Mariota	19	
 8    Tom Brady   	 2         8    Blake Bortles     6	 8    B. Roethlisberger	 9
 9    Matthew Stafford	10         9    Eli Manning      21	 9    Jameis Winston	17
10    Tony Romo    	41        10    Carson Palmer	 17	10    Derek Carr	18
11    Ryan Tannehill   	15        11    Derek Carr   	 12	11    Kirk Cousins	 6
12    Sam Bradford    	23        12    M. Stafford    	  7	12    Andrew Luck	DNP
13    Eli Manning    	 8        13    Philip Rivers     9	13    Dak Prescott	11
14    Philip Rivers    	11        14    Jameis Winston	 11	14    Matthew Stafford	 5
15    Cam Newton    	 1        15    Kirk Cousins      5	15    Philip Rivers	 7
16    T. Bridgewater  	24        16    Andy Dalton    	 13	16    Andy Dalton	16
17    Carson Palmer 	 5        17    Tyrod Taylor     15	17    Eli Manning	23
18    Jay Cutler   	21        18    Matt Ryan    	  3	18    Carson Wentz	 8
19    C. Kaepernick	31        19    Marcus Mariota	 14	19    Carson Palmer	32
20    Andy Dalton   	19        20    Brock Osweiler	 28	20    Alex Smith	 4

If you look at the last three years data, 47 percent of quarterbacks picked in the first 10 picks actually were top-10 quarterbacks at the end of the season. This number is a little lower than you might expect. The only good news with this data that is if you take a quarterback picked in the top 20, you are likely to get a top-20 quarterback as 77 percent of quarterbacks picked in the top 20 the last three seasons finished in the top 20. But overall, this data shows that picking an elite quarterback might not be quite as easy as expected. More than half of the top-10 quarterbacks picked are misses.