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Average Draft Position

by Ryan Knaus
Updated On: October 10, 2018, 1:41 pm ET

Today's column explores average draft positions (ADPs), providing insight into broad trends and perspectives on player values. If the hive-mind of fantasy GMs have given Josh Richardson an ADP of 65.2 (they have), you're less likely to need to reach for him in the 40-50 range.

 

Before diving into ADPs themselves, I want to take a look at position eligibility. By using Yahoo's top-200 players (by ADP), I determined how many players were eligible for each position. As to be expected, PGs and Cs were the rarest position while PFs and SGs were most common.

 

 

This is a simple tool to help visualize where you'll find certain positions in the course of a draft. Each dot in the chart above represents a player being picked at a given ADP. The 'lines' that rise the fastest mean more players from that position are being drafted. Center-eligible players start slow but gain steam in the middle rounds. SF-eligible players lag behind every position throughout most of drafts, before surging in the late-ADP range (130-140). You can also see, for instance, that PGs are popular early but almost completely vanish in the 30-60 range -- with only 59 eligible players in this pool to begin with, you'll want one of those early/elite PGs. Meanwhile, PFs have a major lull from around 90-120. There are plenty of interesting nuances to glean from this data, but let's press forward with the analysis.

 

For the most up-to-date ADP data (it doesn’t change too dramatically), here are the links for ESPN leagues and Yahoo leagues. Fair warning…the ESPN numbers for ‘Avg Pick’ look wacky this year. There are sudden leaps in ADP between guys like Goran Dragic (75.7) and the next-closest player Luka Doncic (83.6) that only get exaggerated as you go deeper. It shows Jamal Murray with an ADP of 140.9, Myles Turner at 173.5, Buddy Hield at 568.6…you get the picture. For that reason, I’m only using Yahoo ADP data this year.

 

Be mindful, however, that ADP data is only good as a general roadmap to values. Here are some caveats to keep in mind:

 

1)     ADPs are an amalgam of many different types and depths of leagues. When it comes to ADP data, the sites that host leagues don’t differentiate between a 10-team roto league and a 14-team H2H league.

2)     There are wide disparities in the intensity of leagues – some require painstaking research and strategies to snipe valuable players from knowledgeable opponents, while some are casual affairs where a little bit of planning goes a long way.

3)     The ‘official’ pre-draft rankings can have a distorting effect. ADP data includes plenty of auto-draft selections (although only ‘live draft’ data is included, lots of owners still forget to show up), which gives outsized importance to pre-draft ranks.

 

Nevertheless, ADP is a useful tool for getting the temperature of the room, as it were. If you know that Kyle Anderson has ADP of 89.9 in ESPN drafts, you’ll be more likely to steal him in the late-middle rounds. This also protects against over-reaching for guys you love – there’s nothing wrong with snagging Luka Doncic a round early to ensure he’s on your squad, but why reach for him in Rnd. 4 in Yahoo (his ADP = 82.1) when you can almost definitely get him a round or two later?

 

With that said…here are the top 200 players for Yahoo leagues!

 

 

Player ADP Avg Round % Drafted
James Harden Hou  1.7 1 100%
Anthony Davis NO  2.2 1 100%
Giannis Antetokounmpo Mil  3.5 1 100%
Stephen Curry GS  5.1 1 100%
LeBron James LAL  5.2 1 100%
Karl-Anthony Towns 5.7 1 100%
Kevin Durant GS  5.9 1 100%
Nikola Jokic Den  8.9 1.1 100%
Russell Westbrook OKC  9.3 1.1 100%
Damian Lillard Por  10.1 1.1 100%
Kawhi Leonard Tor  12.3 1.6 100%
Victor Oladipo Ind  12.4 1.4 100%
Paul George OKC  13.4 1.7 100%
Ben Simmons Phi  15.3 1.9 100%
Joel Embiid Phi  16.4 2 100%
Kemba Walker Cha  16.5 2 100%
Kyrie Irving Bos  17.3 2 100%
Chris Paul Hou  17.4 2 100%
Donovan Mitchell Uta  17.5 2 100%
Bradley Beal Was  22.4 2.2 100%
John Wall Was  23.6 2.5 100%
Jrue Holiday NO  23.7 2.4 100%
Jimmy Butler Min  24.2 2.5 100%
Andre Drummond Det  24.6 2.6 100%
Devin Booker Pho  25.4 2.7 100%
Rudy Gobert Uta  26.1 2.8 100%
Kyle Lowry Tor  26.5 2.7 100%
Klay Thompson GS  28.4 2.9 100%
Khris Middleton Mil  29.5 3 100%
Draymond Green GS  30.5 3 100%
CJ McCollum Por  30.9 3.1 100%
Kevin Love Cle  31.2 3.1 100%
DeMar DeRozan SA  32.1 3.2 100%
Otto Porter Jr. Was  35.1 3.4 100%
LaMarcus Aldridge SA  35.2 3.5 100%
Clint Capela Hou  36.2 3.6 100%
Tobias Harris LAC  36.8 3.6 100%
Marc Gasol Mem  37.5 3.7 100%
Aaron Gordon Orl  42.2 4.1 100%
Eric Bledsoe Mil  42.6 4.1 100%
Jamal Murray Den  42.9 4.1 100%
Blake Griffin Det  43 4.1 100%
Myles Turner Ind  43.4 4.2 100%
Jayson Tatum Bos  44.4 4.3 100%
Al Horford Bos  44.6 4.2 100%
Gary Harris Den  48.4 4.5 100%
John Collins Atl  49.6 4.7 100%
Mike Conley Mem  49.7 4.7 100%
Gordon Hayward Bos  51.5 4.9 100%
DeAndre Jordan Dal  52.5 5 100%
Player ADP Avg Round % Drafted
Lauri Markkanen Chi  55.5 5.2 100%
Jarrett Allen Bkn  55.6 5.2 100%
Robert Covington Phi  57.2 5.3 100%
Nikola Vucevic Orl  57.9 5.4 100%
Deandre Ayton Pho  58.4 5.4 100%
Lou Williams LAC  58.9 5.5 100%
Joe Ingles Uta  59.7 5.6 100%
Will Barton Den  59.7 5.6 100%
Paul Millsap Den  61.1 5.7 100%
Ricky Rubio Uta  61.5 5.7 100%
Dwight Howard Was  62.7 5.8 100%
Taurean Prince Atl  63.2 5.9 100%
Goran Dragic Mia  64.7 6 100%
Josh Richardson Mia  65.2 6 100%
Jeff Teague Min  65.3 6.1 100%
Zach LaVine Chi  65.7 6.1 100%
Lonzo Ball LAL  67.4 6.2 100%
Hassan Whiteside Mia  70 6.4 100%
Nikola Mirotic NO  71.1 6.5 100%
Steven Adams OKC  71.3 6.6 100%
Julius Randle NO  73.1 6.7 100%
Kyle Kuzma LAL  74.4 6.8 100%
Jonas Valanciunas Tor  74.5 6.8 100%
Harrison Barnes Dal  74.8 6.8 100%
Dennis Smith Jr. Dal  77.7 7.1 100%
Tim Hardaway Jr. NY  77.8 7.1 100%
Nicolas Batum Cha  79.2 7.2 100%
Enes Kanter NY  80 7.3 100%
Andrew Wiggins Min  81.4 7.4 100%
Darren Collison Ind  81.8 7.4 100%
Luka Doncic Dal  82.1 7.5 100%
Brook Lopez Mil  82.4 7.5 100%
Dario Saric Phi  82.6 7.5 100%
Kris Dunn Chi  83.7 7.6 100%
Serge Ibaka Tor  83.7 7.6 100%
Brandon Ingram LAL  85 7.7 100%
Evan Fournier Orl  86.6 7.8 100%
JJ Redick Phi  88.1 8 100%
D'Angelo Russell Bkn  88.7 8 100%
Kyle Anderson Mem  89.9 8.1 100%
Jusuf Nurkic Por  90.1 8.2 100%
Wendell Carter Jr. Chi  91.1 8.2 100%
Buddy Hield Sac  94.5 8.5 100%
Jaren Jackson Jr. Mem  97.3 8.8 100%
Larry Nance Jr. Cle  98.9 8.9 100%
Eric Gordon Hou  100.5 9 100%
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope LAL 100.5 9 100%
Tyreke Evans Ind  101 9.1 100%
Carmelo Anthony Hou  101.6 9.1 100%
Player ADP Avg Round % Drafted
Jonathan Isaac Orl  102.9 9.2 99%
Trae Young Atl  104.3 9.3 100%
Allen Crabbe Bkn  104.6 9.4 100%
DeMarcus Cousins GS  104.7 9.3 92%
Jabari Parker Chi  106.1 9.5 100%
Jaylen Brown Bos  106.8 9.6 100%
Dewayne Dedmon Atl  107.2 9.6 99%
Thaddeus Young Ind  107.5 9.6 100%
Dejounte Murray SA  108.2 9.7 97%
Mohamed Bamba Orl  110.3 9.8 99%
JaVale McGee LAL  111.9 10 100%
Dirk Nowitzki Dal  113.9 10.2 97%
Trevor Ariza Pho  114.5 10.2 100%
Willie Cauley-Stein Sac 114.6 10.2 100%
Jordan Bell GS  115.3 10.3 98%
Fred VanVleet Tor  117.7 10.5 99%
Elfrid Payton NO  118 10.5 100%
James Johnson Mia  118.5 10.5 99%
Bogdan Bogdanovic Sac  119.5 10.6 98%
Kristaps Porzingis NY  119.6 10.6 85%
Malcolm Brogdon Mil  120.9 10.8 100%
De'Aaron Fox Sac  123 10.9 96%
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson Bkn 123.2 11 98%
Markelle Fultz Phi  123.7 11 98%
Isaiah Thomas Den  124.7 11.1 98%
Dennis Schroder OKC  124.9 11.1 97%
Kevin Knox NY  125 11.1 84%
Marvin Bagley III Sac  125 11.1 95%
Terry Rozier Bos  125.3 11.1 94%
Rajon Rondo LAL  128.7 11.4 61%
Andre Iguodala GS  128.9 11.2 9%
Mario Hezonja NY  129 11.4 95%
J.R. Smith Cle  129.4 11.3 3%
Justin Holiday Chi  129.7 11.7 21%
Aron Baynes Bos  129.8 11.3 2%
Taj Gibson Min  130 11.5 60%
Lance Stephenson LAL  130.7 11.4 8%
Kent Bazemore Atl  131.3 11.6 97%
Marcin Gortat LAC  131.4 11.6 87%
Jerami Grant OKC  131.6 11.7 96%
Seth Curry Por  131.8 11.6 3%
Marcus Smart Bos  131.9 11.9 25%
Josh Jackson Pho  132 11.7 90%
Kelly Olynyk Mia  132.2 11.7 69%
Dwyane Wade Mia  132.5 11.7 13%
Josh Hart LAL  132.6 11.7 90%
Kyle Korver Cle  132.8 11.6 6%
Robin Lopez Chi  132.9 11.9 2%
Collin Sexton Cle  133.1 11.7 70%
Jakob Poeltl SA  133.1 11.7 76%
Player ADP Avg Round % Drafted
Derrick Rose Min  133.2 11.7 7%
Zach Randolph Sac  133.8 12 4%
Domantas Sabonis Ind  134 11.8 61%
Tristan Thompson Cle  134 11.8 8%
Milos Teodosic LAC  134.2 12.2 10%
Reggie Jackson Det  134.3 11.9 94%
MarShon Brooks Mem  134.4 12.1 3%
Marcus Morris Bos  134.6 11.8 5%
T.J. Warren Pho  134.6 12 41%
Derrick Favors Uta  134.8 12 86%
Avery Bradley LAC  135 12.1 28%
Pau Gasol SA  135 12 20%
Danilo Gallinari LAC  135.1 11.9 72%
Marvin Williams Cha  135.1 11.9 94%
Michael Beasley LAL  135.1 12 2%
Greg Monroe Tor  135.3 11.9 5%
P.J. Tucker Hou  135.8 11.8 4%
Grayson Allen Uta  136.8 12 2%
OG Anunoby Tor  137.3 12.2 3%
Bojan Bogdanovic Ind  137.5 12.1 91%
Danny Green Tor  137.5 12 14%
Patty Mills SA  138.2 12.1 4%
Bobby Portis Chi  138.3 12.2 35%
Justise Winslow Mia  138.4 12.1 3%
Bam Adebayo Mia  138.6 12.3 5%
Ryan Anderson Pho  138.9 12.4 3%
Austin Rivers Was  139 12.2 2%
Miles Bridges Cha  139.1 12.5 12%
Jae Crowder Uta  139.4 12.1 10%
Ersan Ilyasova Mil  139.7 12.3 3%
Markieff Morris Was  139.8 12.4 69%
Spencer Dinwiddie Bkn  139.9 12.4 86%
George Hill Cle  140 12.4 4%
Joe Harris Bkn  140.2 12.4 86%
Rudy Gay SA  140.2 12.4 63%
Cedi Osman Cle  140.3 12.4 20%
Michael Porter Jr. Den  140.3 12.4 3%
Jeremy Lin Atl  140.4 12.7 8%
Nerlens Noel OKC  140.5 12.5 4%
Jordan Clarkson Cle  140.6 12.4 18%
Rodney Hood Cle  140.6 12.4 19%
Dion Waiters Mia  140.8 12.3 2%
JaMychal Green Mem  141 12.4 7%
Caris LeVert Bkn  141.1 12.5 81%
Frank Kaminsky Cha  141.2 12.4 3%
Trey Lyles Den  141.2 12.2 2%
Delon Wright Tor  141.4 12.5 3%
DeMarre Carroll Bkn  141.5 12.5 8%
Tyler Johnson Mia  141.5 12.5 68%
Trey Burke NY  141.6 12.6 10%
Harry Giles Sac  141.8 12.5 7%

Take note of the ‘ownership percentage’ in the right-hand column. This helps differentiate players with otherwise strikingly similar ADPs – Caris LeVert and Frank Kaminsky are both at 141? Not really, because Frank may have been drafted as a flier by some misguided owners but that only represents 3% of total drafts. Meanwhile, LeVert has emerged as a late-round staple in 81% of all drafts – he’s a way more popular sleeper target, despite the comparable ADPs. 

 

Here are 10 more players with consistently late-round ADPs, along with my quick takes on them:

 

Danilo Gallinari (135.1): The Clippers have empowered Gallo and Tobias Harris to lead the offense, and outside of the top-100 I’m fine with taking the injury risk for Gallinari. With an ADP of 135.1 he’s routinely available in Rds. 10-12.

T.J. Warren (134.6): I wasn’t scared off by Josh Jackson last season and it paid dividends, with Warren hitting top-100 value for the second straight year. I want nothing to do with him this year, though.

Derrick Favors (134.8): There’s nothing flashy about owning Favors. Injuries severely reduced his fantasy appeal to the point that he was undrafted in many leagues last year, but he finished as a top-75 value (cumulative) thanks to a mere five missed games. Utah paid him this summer and he’s still the starting PF, so he should cruise along as a top-100 guy.

Avery Bradley (135.0): AB was putting up mid-round value in his final years with Boston, but he’s just a flier pick after a disastrous, injury-plagued 2017-18 campaign. It remains to be seen if his core-muscle injury is truly behind him, but the upside is there for a final-round flier.

Bojan Bogdanovic (137.5): We can start with the fact that Bojan has missed only 10 games across four NBA seasons. That type of durability shouldn’t go overlooked, and at worst he’s a 3-point specialist who will help your FT% and chip in a few stats elsewhere. Not a guy to heavily target, of course, but worth a look.

Bobby Portis (138.3): On a per-36 basis last year, Portis averaged 21.1 points, 10.9 rebounds, 1.8 triples, 2.7 assists, 1.1 steals and 0.5 blocks. He made a career-high 76.9% of his free throws, too, which is a nice bonus. With Lauri Markkanen (elbow) sidelined to start the season, it looks like Portis will earn the nod at PF. That's enough incentive for me to scoop him up.

Ryan Anderson (138.9): Another Suns player I’ll be avoiding everywhere. He can still put up tons of 3-pointers with some rebounds, but that’s about it. Throw in the inevitable DNPs and probable shutdown, and he belongs on the wire.

Jeremy Lin (140.4): No thanks. He can’t stay healthy and will be on the wrong end of the PG timeshare with Trae Young.

Jordan Clarkson (140.6): I’m intrigued by Clarkson, in part because he’s another player who simply hasn’t missed games – four DNPs in the past three years. I’m anticipating high usage as a sixth-man for the talent-deprived Cavaliers, which gives him a shot to average 15 points, 1.5 triples, 3.0 boards and 3.0 dimes. He’s a mild help for FT% and a mild negative for FG%, but isn’t a guy (Marcus Smart comes to mind) who will tank your FG%.

Derrick White (unknown): The Spurs’ possible starting PG is rocketing up draft boards due to Dejounte Murray’s awful ACL tear. He’s not in this ADP list just yet, but it won’t be long before he cracks the top-150 and climbs even higher – I’m comfortable gambling on him around 110, and he’s looked very assured throughout Summer League, training camp and the preseason.

 

As I detailed in the introduction, ADP values are flawed metrics of player values, but they still provide valuable insights in overall fantasy trends and perceptions. For more ways to use aggregated pre-draft data to your advantage, check out our Draft Guide columns on ESPN and Yahoo's Default Ranks. Good luck! 

 

Ryan Knaus
Despite residing in Portland, Maine, Ryan Knaus remains a heartbroken Sonics fan who longs for the days of Shawn Kemp and Xavier McDaniel. He has written for Rotoworld.com since 2007. You can follow him on Twitter.