Mock my Mock: 1st edition

Composite photo by Jack Brame

Football season is finally upon us, so we know what that means. It's time to do some mock drafts to prepare us for the drafts that really matter, and can put cash in our pockets. I wrote this column last year and it seemed to get a lot of good feedback, so why mess with a good thing?

Here's how this works. Each week I will draft a different fantasy team and I will change my draft position to highlight the types of teams one can build depending on where they are drafting. For this week's exercise, I participated in a mock draft in which I drafted with the No. 1 overall pick. Next week I'll draft in the middle of the round, and finally I will do a draft picking at No. 11 or No. 12.

I always advise people to participate in as many mocks as they can before drafting, but not everyone has the time. If that's the case for you, I'll do all the leg work participating in dozens of mock drafts, and you can sit back and learn the positives and negatives of each draft slot. These are PPR drafts, by the way. Let's get started.

With my first pick I selected Saints RB Alvin Kamara. I considered Saquon Barkley and Christian McCaffrey here, and I would be happy with any of these 3 players. I took Kamara because he's had more than one good season unlike Barkley, and he plays on an elite offense. With Ezekiel Elliott's holdout, I'm staying away from him for the time being.

With my second pick I knew I was going to get two picks in a row, so I opted for the best WR on the board in Mike Evans and decided to take one of the elite TEs. I wanted to see how my team would look if I invested early in a TE. The 3 elite TEs (Kelce, Kittle, Ertz) will all be drafted before the 3rd round is over, and I had to take Zach Ertz with the 1st pick of the 3rd round because there's no way he would be there the next time I picked. If I had passed on TE, I would have drafted Amari Cooper, Keenan Allen, Damien Williams, or T.Y. Hilton. If Williams wasn't dealing with a hamstring injury, he would be hard to pass up. His upside is massive in the Kansas City offense.

As far as the Evans selection, I wanted to take the best WR on the board and my other options were TY Hilton, Amari Cooper, and Keenan Allen. I was tempted to take Cooper or Allen, but Evans had over 1500 yards last year and if he hits double digit TDs, I will be extremely happy with the pick. He had 8 last year and with Bruce Arians coming in, I like my chances. Arians loves to push the ball down field, and DeSean Jackson is no longer the deep threat after signing with the Eagles in the offseason.

With my fourth selection I didn't like the running backs left on the board, so I grabbed by second WR by drafting Kenny Golladay. He's a big talented dude that should put up good numbers as the Lions #1 WR with Golden Tate out of the picture. The RBs I passed on here where Kenyan Drake, Phillip Lindsay, and Tevin Coleman. Drake will likely be in a timeshare on maybe the worst offense in the league, and Lindsay has a new coaching staff that might use Royce Freeman more this year. Coleman I like, but not until the 6th round.

With my 5th pick I went WR again and landed Cooper Kupp. He'll be my flex and I'm totally cool with that. Goff looks for him in the red zone, and this offense should be dynamic again. I think he'll be okay coming off the ACL injury.

I had a long wait before my 6th pick came around and here's where I selected my #2 RB. I got Lamar Miller, and this was before the Duke Johnson trade. Miller doesn't have much upside, but he's the starter on an offense that I think will be pretty good this year. My next pick may be a bit of a reach, but I love his upside in an offense that wants to run the ball. Rashaad Penny was my selection with the 1st pick of the 7th round. I knew he wouldn't be there when I picked in the 8th round, so it was now or never. The Seahawks spent a 1st round pick on him last year, and I think he could take over the starting job at some point this season.

In the 8th round Corey Davis felt like a good gamble, let's hope he breaks out in his 3rd NFL season like many WRs do. I continued to add depth in the 9th round with Chargers RB Austin Eckler, who could be a huge value with Melvin Gordon holding out.

You can clearly tell that I was waiting as long as possible to address QB, and when you take a TE as early as I did, it's a good approach. With my next 2 picks I added more depth with veteran WR DeSean Jackson, who I'm told is showing great chemistry with Carson Wentz, and RB LeSean McCoy. I don't really like McCoy, but I'll take him all day in round 11. In rounds 12 and 13 I grabbed two QBs in Lamar Jackson and Tom Brady. I love Jackson's upside, and I have Brady if he falters.

Overall, I really like my team. I don't know if I'll continue to address TE so early, but I wanted to see how thin I would be at other positions if I drafted that way. I think I would like my team better with Keenan Allen or Amari Cooper as my #2 WR, but that's the price you pay when you take a TE early. Here's a look at my starters.

QB Lamar Jackson

WR Mike Evans

WR Kenny Galladay

RB Alvin Kamara

RB Lamar Miller

TE Zach Ertz

FLEX Cooper Kupp

My QBs aren't super sexy, but Lamar Jackson has a great chance to surprise this year with Greg Roman as the offensive coordinator. Roman was the OC in San Francisco when Kaepernick was the QB, so this guy knows how to work with a running QB. I don't love Brady this year because he doesn't have a lot of talent to work with, but in round 13 he's worth a shot.

This is my first edition of Mock my mock for 2019, and I'll be drafting at pick #6 for next week's exercise. Be sure to check out my show MoneyLine with Jerry Bo on ESPN 97.5. We're on every Sunday from 10-noon, and we'll talk a lot of fantasy football and NFL gambling. Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter.




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Watson's accusers appeared on Real Sports on Tuesday night. Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images.

HBO Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel’s heavily promoted and much anticipated examination of Deshaun Watson’s legal mess involving alleged sexual misconduct shed little new light and merely presented a summary of well worn he said/she (x22) said accusations and denials.

The episode debuted Tuesday night on the premium cable service and will be repeated dozens of times throughout the week on HBO’s platforms. Check your local listings for times and channel.

The segment was hosted by Soledad O’Brien who presented compelling face-to-face interviews with two of the quarterback’s accusers: massage therapists Ashley Solis and Kyla Hayes. Their stories were detailed and graphic. Both cried during the interviews.

Solis: “As I’m working, he deliberately grabs himself and put his penis on my hand. I pulled my hand away instantly and I started crying. I told that I’m done. I don’t want to do this anymore.”

Solis said she felt threatened when Watson, before leaving the session, allegedly told her: “I know you have a career to protect, and I know that you don’t want anyone messing with it, just like I don’t want anyone messing with mine.”

Solis added, “That’s when I got really scared because that sounded like a threat to me.”

Hayes: “He wanted me to kind of make a V motion in his pelvic area. I just kept massaging and did what he asked, until his penis kept touching me repeatedly as I did it.”

Hayes said that Watson had an orgasm, which she said was “mortifying, embarrassing and disgusting.”

O’Brien asked Hayes why she continued to have contact via email with Watson after their encounter.

Hayes: "I wasn't sure what he was capable of. He could've physically assaulted me. He could've bashed my business, so I had to protect myself and my business the best way I saw fit. Did I ever see him again after that? No. Did I give him the runaround? Yes."

O’Brien pointed out that two separate grand juries in Texas heard criminal accusations against Watson and neither found enough evidence to indict him.

Solis and Hayes, and 20 other massage therapists have filed civil suits against Watson. The cases aren’t expected to reach a courtroom until next March. Both sides could reach a settlement before then which would effectively shut down any legal action against Watson. However, both sides say they aren’t interested in any pretrial settlements. That’s what they say now, anyway.

After being banished to the sidelines for the 2021 season by the Houston Texans, Watson signed a historic, 5-year fully guaranteed $230 million contract with the Cleveland Browns.

Hayes said she feels Watson “is being rewarded for bad behavior." Solis said, "It's just like a big screw you. That's what it feels like. That we (the Browns) don't care. He can run and throw, and that's what we care about.”

Watson currently is participating in preseason workouts with the Browns and, at the moment, is cleared to play the upcoming NFL season.

That is unless the NFL suspends Watson for some, most or all of the 2022 season. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has said the league is nearing completion of its independent investigation into Watson’s case and will reach a decision “shortly,” probably this summer. The NFL and NFL Players Association mutually agreed to have former U.S. District Judge Sue Robinson decide whether or not Watson violated the league’s Personal Conduct Policy and what discipline should be handed down if he did.

The Browns are scheduled to play the Texans on Dec. 4 at NRG Stadium in Houston.

O’Brien said, while producing the Real Sports piece, she tried to interview Watson, his attorneys and the Cleveland Browns for their side of the story. All declined.

During a press conference in March to announce his joining the Browns, Watson denied any inappropriate behavior with the massage therapists.

Watson: “I never assaulted any woman. I’ve never disrespected any woman. I was raised to be genuine and respect everyone around me. I’ve never done the thing that these people are alleging. My mom and my aunties didn’t raise me that way.”

Leah Graham, a member of Watson’s legal team, sat for an interview after O’Brien’s segment was complete.

Graham: "It's 22 women. It's one lawyer. There's only one lawyer who was willing to take these cases. And as we know from Ashley Solis’ deposition, Mr. (Houston attorney Tony) Buzbee was not the first, probably not the second or third lawyer she went to, but he was the only one to take her case. Why? Not because it had merit, but because he would use these cases to increase his social media following and quite frankly to get on shows like this one.”

My reaction after watching the Real Sports segment? We weren’t in the room when the massage therapists worked on Watson. We weren’t in the grand jury room when evidence against Watson was presented. We don’t know what happened. We don’t know what will happen if these cases go to trial.

Until then all we have is one big, lurid, embarrassing mess. In American courtrooms, defendants are presumed innocent. That’s often the opposite in the court of public opinion. We’ll just have to wait while the wheels of justice grind painfully slow.

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