2017 fantasy football mock draft No. 4: Auctioneering

With fantasy drafts drawing nearer, we figured it was high time we expanded our mock draft coverage into the auction format. For those who have never played in an auction draft before, here's how it works: Every drafter starts with a fake monetary budget ($200 is the standard) which they use to bid on players. Instead of the draft unfolding in the traditional "snake" format, drafters take turns nominating players for bidding. This is where the strategy comes in, as you can nominate players you want to draft or players you have no interest in drafting. Overall, auctions are extremely fun and pose new challenges as everyone has a chance at every player -- as long as they manage their budget.

Our auction draft was a 12-team, standard scoring mock with teams needing to assemble a roster of 15 players (no K/DEF was required). See the full teams/drafters below, and be sure to let us know who had the best team or how bad our teams are on Twitter (profiles linked below).

Draft participants

  1. Alex Gelhar (@alexgelhar) - NFL Fantasy editor/writer
    1. Dylan Milner (@dmilner13) - NFL Fantasy LIVE senior producer
    2. Matt "Franchise" Franciscovich (@mattfranchise) - NFL Fantasy writer
    3. Michael Fabiano (@michael_fabiano) - NFL senior fantasy analyst
    4. Cynthia Frelund (@cfrelund) - NFL Fantasy LIVE analyst
    5. Marcas Grant (@marcasg) - NFL Fantasy editor
    6. Brandon Gdula (@gdula13) - Senior editor & analyst at NumberFire
    7. Denny Carter (@cdcarter13) - Owner, Draft Day Consultants, Co-host Living the Stream podcast
    8. Matt Harmon (@MattHarmon_BYB) - NFL Fantasy writer
    9. Adam Rank (@adamrank) - NFL Fantasy LIVE analyst
    10. James Koh (@jamesdkoh) - NFL Fantasy LIVE host
    11. Alex Wilk (@alexcwilk) - NFL Fantasy LIVE producer

Alex Gelhar's team

Tom Brady, QB, Patriots - $20
DeMarco Murray, RB, Titans - $37
Pierre Garcon, WR, 49ers - $17
Frank Gore, RB, Colts - $15
C.J. Anderson, RB, Broncos - $11
Jordan Reed, TE, Redskins - $9
Michael Crabtree, WR, Raiders - $17
Rob Kelley, RB, Redskins - $6
Danny Woodhead, RB, Ravens - $15
Donte Moncrief, WR, Colts - $8
LeGarrette Blount, RB, Eagles - $6
Golden Tate, WR, Lions - $11
Quincy Enunwa, WR, Jets - $3
Randall Cobb, WR, Packers - $5
Corey Coleman, WR, Browns - $5

The thing I love most about Alex's team is how he got a pretty good crop of running backs without breaking the bank. The most expensive player of that group is DeMarco Murray who, at $37, went for nearly half the price of elite backs like David Johnson and Le'Veon Bell. There are a few calculated risks in this group as well -- Jordan Reed and Randall Cobb, I'm looking at you -- but Alex put together enough depth at wide receiver that he would be able to survive the hit if something happened. Finally, the $20 price tag for Brady was more than I was willing to pay with so many other quarterbacks on the board. But as a fan of the "go get your guy" theory, I'm OK with it.

Dylan Milner's team

Speaking of getting your guy ... $70 for David Johnson. I can't really argue with that, though. The price is going to be the price this year. There were other things I really liked with this roster, though. Mariota at $4, Doug Martin at $5 and Mark Ingram at $8 could prove to be solid values by the time the year is up. I didn't see anything from Dylan's draft that immediately struck me as odd or reaching, though I was amused by the Marqise Lee dart throw late in the draft. Fight On forever, right Dylan?

Matt Franciscovich's team

Rumors of Carlos Hyde's demise in San Francisco have been greatly exaggerated, which makes Franchise's $20 acquisition pretty nifty. Seeing Dez Bryant come off the board at $44 was a bit surprising and maybe a case of Franchise buying in at Dez's absolute ceiling. Perhaps the biggest coup of Franchise's draft was dropping a mere $2 for Kirk Cousins, who is getting steadily closer to ascending to his cloud as Saint Waitonaquarterback. To get him at that price is a steal. I'm not sure I could justify the price for C.J. Prosise ... but Franchise is staying on #brand, so I'll allow it.

Michael Fabiano's team

Pro tip: Nominating two kickers in your first two turns of an auction draft is guaranteed to draw digital eye rolls from everyone in your draft room. It's also guaranteed that you'll probably end up with at least one of them. So ... Gostkowski. As for the rest of Fabs' draft, there are some nice risk-reward options on the roster including Eddie Lacy and Mike Wallace. I don't know how often you see handcuffing in auction drafts but if you're going to do it, paying a little extra to lock up Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman isn't a bad way to go.

Cynthia Frelund's team

Cynthia went big on getting Julio Jones but was fairly frugal the rest of the way. I particularly liked the Corey Davis and Paul Perkins selections. Both enter the season with question marks about their roles in their respective offenses. But both players also offer intriguing upside and Cynthia was able to score them at pretty reasonable prices. James Koh voice Oh by the way ... that Zay Jones selection is looking more and more genius by the minute. Good on ya, Frelund.

Marcas Grant's team

I admit I might have panicked a little bit on McCaffrey but I do believe he's going to be a big part of the Panthers' attack this season. Yes, I drafted two tight ends but it's because I believe Howard has the ability to break out of the "rookie tight ends aren't productive" box. I was pretty excited about my Tyrod selection -- until Kirk Cousins went for three dollars less. Sigh. Taking a $4 flyer on Rex Burkhead late in the draft feels even better with reports that he's starting to see more of the short yardage and goal-line looks in the Patriots offense. Yet with #Belitricks still lurking, you never really know.

Brandon Gdula's team

Brandon was a little late to get in on the party, having been repeatedly outbid earlier in the draft. He made up for it by compiling a pretty nice collection of well-valued talent. The back-to-back wins for Kenny Britt and Eric Decker as productive veteran receiver options for a combined $14 was pretty special. The back portion of his running back corps could potentially be a headache but with McCoy, Miller and Powell at the top, it might never become an issue.

Denny Carter's team

Odell Beckham, Jr., WR, Giants - $63
Sammy Watkins, WR, Bills - $25
Eric Ebron, TE, Lions - $11
Spencer Ware, RB, Chiefs - $22
Jordy Nelson, WR, Packers - $49
Mike Gillislee, RB, Patriots - $9
Brandon Marshall, WR, Giants - $5
Carson Palmer, QB, Cardinals - $3
Shane Vereen, RB, Giants - $3
T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jaguars - $1
Jamaal Charles, RB, Broncos - $1
Kevin White, WR, Bears - $1
Darren McFadden, RB, Cowboys - $1
Cardinals D/ST - $1
Steven Hauschka, K, Bills - $1

Noted tight end streamer Denny Carter thought he was getting a bargain with Eric Ebron at $11. Until a slew of more highly-ranked tight ends went for less. Now Denny is tilting. Still, he put together a pretty good squad that went heavy on wide receiver spending but nearly assures him of having elite talent at the position. He could run into a problem at running back but with a total of $15 spent on his final five rushers it's not a big investment if any of them go sideways this season.

Matt Harmon's team

Leave it to our resident wide receiver whisperer to try and find bargains at the wideout position. I mean ... receivers not named Mike Evans. The rest of the wideouts on Harmon's roster have a combined price tag of about half of what he spent for Evans. As the narrative for the Bengals backfield has started to include more of a role for Gio Bernard, Harmon is looking a little more prescient. There is a lot of upside on this team -- especially if players like Bernard and Adrian Peterson start to take off in 2017.

Adam Rank's team

Rank's draft was a study in going hard early to build a solid foundation before tapering off to find values late in the draft. A starting lineup featuring Jordan Howard, Jay Ajayi, A.J. Green, Aaron Rodgers and Brandin Cooks is going to be tough to beat. We held this draft before Quincy Enunwa suffered a season-ending injury and now Rank's speculative drafting of Robby Anderson looks a whole lot better. Also ... let's take a moment to acknowledge Rank snagging Austin Hooper late in the draft. He's not getting a lot of hype but could really blossom and find a bigger role in the Falcons offense this year. At just $1, this has the potential to be a really nice addition.

James Koh's team

James actually left this draft with $38 fake dollars still in his pocket as though they end up on a gift card or something. One thing James did is go all in on young running backs. Four of his drafted running backs are in either their first or second season. I'd feel better about it if he weren't leading with Marshawn Lynch who brings plenty of optimism into the season but just as many question marks. I've also gone on record as saying that Tyrell Williams has been undervalued. Apparently James agrees ... though the price certainly went up after the injury to Mike Williams.

Alex Wilk's team

Isaiah Crowell, RB, Browns - $25
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts - $26
Todd Gurley, RB, Rams - $25
Antonio Brown, WR, Steelers - $59
Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs - $18
DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Texans - $25
Andrew Luck, QB, Colts - $6
Derek Carr, QB, Raiders - $3
Jeremy Hill, RB, Bengals - $4
John Ross, WR, Bengals - $3
Sterling Shepard, WR, Giants - $2
Jeremy McNichols, RB, Buccaneers - $1
Curtis Samuel, WR, Panthers - $1
Patriots D/ST - $1
Cairo Santos, K, Chiefs - $1

Wilk identified the talent he wanted at the top of the draft and went after it with relatively good success. What would concern me is that two of his top three receivers have quarterback question marks. Then again, he also took one of those quarterbacks (Andrew Luck). Keep your fantasy stars close and your fantasy question marks even closer. Is that a thing? It should be a thing. Let's make this a thing, people.

Marcas Grant is a fantasy editor for NFL.com. Follow him on Twitter @MarcasG.

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