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Pick ten players to build an NFL team

jking948

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So I saw this cool article on ESPN about picking ten NFL players to build a team... the only catch is that the rest of your roster are replacement-level players, I.e., backups. Your goal is to win a Super Bowl over the next three years, no salary cap concerns, and health/injuries do matter.


I made two rosters. The first one I designed is about giving a QB time to make long throws down field while having a defense that can limit the passing game.

1) Pat Mahomes, QB
2) David Bakhitiari, LT
3) Mitchell Schwartz, RT
4) Quenton Nelson, LG
5) Odell Beckham Jr, WR
6) Jalen Ramsey, CB
7) Stephon Gilmore, CB
8) DeAndre Hopkins, WR
9) Luke Kuechly, MLB
10) Aaron Donald, DT

After thinking about it a bit, though, I still wonder if the only way to build a line that can withstand a pass rush is with five good linemen, I.e., no replacement players. Consequently, I decided to make a "no O-Line" team that is designed to get the ball out quickly and generate lots of turnovers and negative plays on defense.

1) Pat Mahomes, QB
2) Odell Beckham Jr, WR
3) Jalen Ramsey, CB
4) Stephon Gilmore, CB
5) George Kittle, TE
6) Keenan Allen, WR
7) Luke Kuechly, MLB
8) Aaron Donald, DT
9) Myles Garrett, EDGE
10) Von Miller, EDGE/RE

What would you guys go for? I figured this could be an interesting exercise while we wait for the season.
 

Stark

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Just saw this. I'm not great at evaluating OL talent, but I know that we're going to need some great linemen here to keep this team up.

Offense is also more reliable than defense (in my opinion), so I'm probably going to focus a bit more on the offensive side of the ball.

For those that don't know, any other positions will be filled w/ replacement level players and this team needs to be built to compete through 2022 (making guys like Brees, Brady, Rivers, etc. bad picks).

Here's my ten:
  1. Baker Mayfield, QB
  2. Aaron Donald, DT
  3. DeAndre Hopkins, WR
  4. Michael Thomas, WR
  5. David Bakhtiari, OT
  6. Quenton Nelson, G
  7. Tyron Smith, OT
  8. Jalen Ramsey, CB
  9. Saquon Barkley, RB
  10. Khalil Mack, OLB
 

bob2the2nd

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seriously 5 OL is way too much. When passing games are based on the idea of quick decisions, there is no need to spend that much of your 10 picks on OL. You need enough talent on your OL to keep the immediate rush out the backfield, and thats pretty much it.

I would do

QB
RB
WR
WR
2 OL
1 LB
2 CB
1 DL
 

MGMT

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Delete bye thx
 
Last edited:

The Wizard of Moz

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Maybe it’s cheap, but if there’s no additional rules against trading or how much of one position you can take, I would probably take At least 5 QBs with the intention of trading all but 1 to the opposing conference for absolute hauls of assets greater than any one positional player I could grab instead

Think about the return you could get on a Baker/Goff. You could get one of the elite talents in the NFL plus entire years of teams’ drafts
 

Cratylus

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1. Pat Mahomes, QB
2. Myles Garrett, DE
3. Tyron Smith, LT
4. Jalen Ramsey, CB
5. DeAndre Hopkins, WR
6. Derwin James, FS
7. Aaron Donald, DT
8. Julio Jones, WR
9. Xavien Howard, CB
10. Bobby Wagner, LB

- Best QB in the NFL...
- Protected by a premier LT who has allowed a grand total of 6 sacks in the last 3 seasons...
- Either Hopkins or Jones will eat you alive if you double the other one; pick your poison...
- You can double one of Garrett or Donald, but the one you don't double will destroy you...
- The secondary (Ramsey, James, Howard) will clamp down your WRs and make them irrelevant...
- Wagner will beast at ILB against the run and can cover the slot if needed, all while never missing a tackle or making a mistake.
 

jking948

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1. Pat Mahomes, QB
2. Myles Garrett, DE
3. Tyron Smith, LT
4. Jalen Ramsey, CB
5. DeAndre Hopkins, WR
6. Derwin James, FS
7. Aaron Donald, DT
8. Julio Jones, WR
9. Xavien Howard, CB
10. Bobby Wagner, LB

- Best QB in the NFL...
- Protected by a premier LT who has allowed a grand total of 6 sacks in the last 3 seasons...
- Either Hopkins or Jones will eat you alive if you double the other one; pick your poison...
- You can double one of Garrett or Donald, but the one you don't double will destroy you...
- The secondary (Ramsey, James, Howard) will clamp down your WRs and make them irrelevant...
- Wagner will beast at ILB against the run and can cover the slot if needed, all while never missing a tackle or making a mistake.
That's actually a really interesting team. It is hard to think of building a car even guys that can have an impact even while surrounded by basically third stringers. I think you and I both initially went for guys at positions where the player delivers a lot of value (QB, receivers, secondary, and pass rush).

I've seen other ideas like @The Wizard of Moz who take a bunch of QBs and try to exploit market inefficiencies.

The most interesting thought I heard was no offensive line. It argued the only way you can have a good offensive line is with five linemen because defenses can adjust their attack. depending on weak points.

The other peculiar choice was to think about future market inefficiencies... someone said that defenders are getting so small that the run game will eventually become really efficient. He took Lamar Jackson, a power back, a pass catching back, two tight ends, and five O-linemen.

Ultimately, I find all of the extreme strategies (tons of QBs, tons of linemen, all running, etc.) to be unconvincing. I would still go moderation. Though, I fully acknowledge Moz's point that taking five QBs probably gives you three enormously valuable trade chips.
 

Cratylus

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That's actually a really interesting team. It is hard to think of building a car even guys that can have an impact even while surrounded by basically third stringers. I think you and I both initially went for guys at positions where the player delivers a lot of value (QB, receivers, secondary, and pass rush).

I've seen other ideas like @The Wizard of Moz who take a bunch of QBs and try to exploit market inefficiencies.

The most interesting thought I heard was no offensive line. It argued the only way you can have a good offensive line is with five linemen because defenses can adjust their attack. depending on weak points.

The other peculiar choice was to think about future market inefficiencies... someone said that defenders are getting so small that the run game will eventually become really efficient. He took Lamar Jackson, a power back, a pass catching back, two tight ends, and five O-linemen.

Ultimately, I find all of the extreme strategies (tons of QBs, tons of linemen, all running, etc.) to be unconvincing. I would still go moderation. Though, I fully acknowledge Moz's point that taking five QBs probably gives you three enormously valuable trade chips.
Yeah, looking up at your two designed squads I see that mine is kind of similar to one of them. My thought was to have elite talent at the positions that have the most impact on the game. Try to shut down the passing game of the opposition while having elite talent in the key offensive positions and let Mahomes do his thing. Not sure how well Tyron would be able to protect the QB with four 3rd stringers to his right, but I guess that's the dilemma when you only can choose ten guys.
 

jking948

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Yeah, looking up at your two designed squads I see that mine is kind of similar to one of them. My thought was to have elite talent at the positions that have the most impact on the game. Try to shut down the passing game of the opposition while having elite talent in the key offensive positions and let Mahomes do his thing. Not sure how well Tyron would be able to protect the QB with four 3rd stringers to his right, but I guess that's the dilemma when you only can choose ten guys.
I think the blocking depends on your QB, too. Mahomes is a bigger guy and, if you could surround him with two good tackles, the interior guys matter less. But, if you have a QB like Baker or Brees, he needs a clear middle pocket to get passes off.

The difficult spot for me is only getting ten guys. I weirdly think that if you had 11 choices this would be an easy exercise. With only ten, though, you basically have to pick between a RT, safety, coverage linebacker, or second corner to drop.

Ultimately, I agree with you, being able to pass and defend the pass are the two most important things in an exercise like this.
 

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