Welcome to our 2019 Player Profiles series. We are going through the top 100 in the consensus PPR rankings of Heath Cummings, Jamey Eisenberg and Dave Richard to give you the case for and the case against drafting each player. By the time you're done, you'll know everything you need to know for drafting in 2019.
Here are players 40-31, which is a good spot to find impact running backs and receivers:
40. Josh Jacobs, RB, OAK
The Case For: Jacobs was the first running back selected in the draft and he has very little competition for early down work in Oakland. Isaiah Crowell tore his Achilles, and he was replaced by Doug Martin. Jacobs should be a true workhorse on an improved offense and 1,000 yards feels like a near lock..
The Case Against: This offense only ran the ball 387 times in 2018 and they added Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams in the offseason. We still don't know how improved the offense will be, which could limit Jacobs' touchdown upside. Maybe most importantly, Jalen Richard led the Raiders backs with 81 targets last year and he's still on the roster.
39. Devonta Freeman, RB, ATL
The Case For: Tevin Coleman is gone, leaving Freeman in a committee with Ito Smith. I still expect Freeman to be the lead back, and Freeman has already shown us he can be really good in a committee. In 2016 he only had 227 carries and still topped 1,500 total yards and scored 13 touchdowns. I expect the Falcons defense to bounce back, which will make the Falcons more run-heavy than they were last year. Freeman has the potential to be a top-10 back once again.
The Case Against: Freeman has only played 16 games in the past two seasons combined. He's had multiple knee injuries and he's also had more than one concussion. This is going to be a committee and a fairly even split as the Falcons try to keep Freeman healthy.
38. Kenyan Drake, RB, MIA
The Case For: Adam Gase is gone! It has been extremely frustrating to watch Drake continually average 4.5 yards per carry or better and not get a feature role. Actually, that's not true. He did get a feature role at the end of 2017, and he was awesome. In the final five games that season he averaged 118 yards per game. If Brian Flores just let's go on the reins, Drake could be a star. And even if he's not the workhorse, Drake was a top-20 running back in PPR last year with a limited workload.
The Case Against: It's quite possible the reasons Gase didn't trust Drake with a feature role didn't leave with Gase. In fact, Flores hasn't exactly spoken like he views Drake as a feature back either. This is going to be an awful team by design, so it's going to be really difficult for a running back in a committee to be good.
37. Adam Thielen, WR, MIN
The Case For: Over the past two seasons, Thielen has caught 204 passes for more than 2,600 yards. The only real concern we had about him was the low touchdown total, and he caught nine of those last year. He's a great route runner who catches almost everything, and he has Stefon Diggs on the other side so teams can't double-team him. Thielen is nearly unstoppable in single coverage, and you should be thrilled to get him as your No. 1 receiver.
The Case Against: Can't remember when or why John DeFilippo got fired? Just take a look at the team's game logs. In their final three games, with 83 rush attempts and 82 pass attempts. Mike Zimmer wasn't happy with the team's pass-heavy offense and made a change. Boy, did he ever. The Vikings threw the ball more than 28 times once in the final three games and didn't top 240 passing yards in any of those games. It's going to be very difficult to be a top-12 receiver on an offense that figures to run as much as the Vikings in 2019.
36. Marlon Mack, RB, IND
The Case For: Mack is the lead back on a very good offense, and Andrew Luck has made less talented backs Fantasy relevant in the past. There are not a lot of backs left at this point in the draft who have a legitimate shot at double-digit touchdowns, and Mack already did that in 12 games last year.
The Case Against: There are durability concerns for sure. Mack has already missed significant time due to injury, and it's unknown whether he can actually handle a true feature role over 16 games. Also, even though he's the Colts' lead back, he's not likely to get a feature role with Nyheim Hines there. That will hurt Mack's value in PPR league because he only had 17 catches last year.
35. Brandin Cooks, WR, LAR
The Case For: There's a lot of value in knowing what you're going to get from your Fantasy draft. With Cooks there should be no question. Each of the past four years he's been between 1,082 and 1,204 yards. Each of the last four years he's finished between eighth and 12th among wide receivers. And each of the past three years he's beaten his ADP. He's the big-play receiver for the Rams and should continue his amazing run of consistency and finish the year close to a No. 1 receiver.
The Case Against: The funny thing about Cooks' consistency is how it's only a yearly thing, not a weekly thing. In 2018 he had seven games with fewer than 12 PPR Fantasy points. He also had five games with more than 20. It was even more noticeable in 2017 when he had five games with single-digit Fantasy points. There may be a few more duds with Cooks than your average top-12 wide receiver.
34. Aaron Jones, RB, GB
The Case For: When Jones has been healthy and used as a feature back, he's been remarkable. He's averaged 5.5 yards per carry each of his first two years and flashed receiving ability in his second year. New coach Matt LaFleur has expressed a desire to run the ball more often, and his history suggests the running backs should be involved in the passing game. With Aaron Rodgers under center, defenses can't key on the run, so Jones' efficiency shouldn't regress too much.
The Case Against: He hasn't been able to stay healthy yet, and LaFleur was the offensive coordinator last year when the Titans chopped up carries between Derrick Henry and Dion Lewis for the first 12 games of the year. It's also hard to imagine the Packers increase the run split too much when they have one of the best quarterbacks ever to play the game under center.
33. Kerryon Johnson, RB, DET
The Case For: There was little doubt in 2018 who was the Lions' best running back. Johnson made that clear whenever the team gave him the football. Seven times the Lions gave Johnson 14 touches in a game. In six of those games he totaled at least 85 yards. Johnson's success was stunted by his lack of touchdowns, but there should be little doubt he'll score more once he's given more regular touches. There's enormous upside for the former second-rounder out of Auburn, especially if the Lions throw him the football more often. He had five catches in three different games and caught 82% of the balls thrown his way.
The Case Against: It seems unlikely the Lions will be good enough for Johnson to be great without a feature role. If Johnson is once again splitting early down work and losing third-down work, he's going to remain more upside than actual production. This is especially true since the Lions seem destined to remain a below-.500 team in a division full of teams with realistic playoff aspirations.
32. T.Y. Hilton, WR, IND
The Case For: Hilton is the No. 1 receiver on a team with a very good offense and one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Despite missing two games in 2018, he still finished the season as the No. 14 wide receiver in Fantasy. Hilton may actually benefit from the arrival of Parris Campbell, who the Colts drafted in the second round. On a week-to-week basis, Hilton has enormous upside.
The Case Against: Hilton battled through a variety of ailments in 2018 and will turn 30 during the 2019 season. While his injury risk may only be slightly increased, he also has a quarterback whose major shoulder injury cost him the 2017 season. Even if they stay healthy, Hilton's upside seems to be limited by Luck's propensity to look to anyone else in the red zone. The star receiver has never scored more than seven touchdowns and he hasn't topped six since 2015.
31. Julian Edelman, WR, NE
The Case For: The retirement of Rob Gronkowski is a loss for all of us. Well, all of us except for Edelman. He's been phenomenal in games without Gronkowski, averaging more targets, receptions and yards. Even with Gronkowski, he was pretty much outstanding in 2018. On a per game basis he was every bit as good as he was in 2017, if not a little bit better. I'd expect something similar in 2019, and, he shouldn't be suspended for the first four games this time around.
The Case Against: When the season starts he's going to be a 33-year-old receiver with a 42-year-old quarterback on a team that went extremely run-heavy at the end of last season. With their combined age and Edelman's extensive injury history, he's anything but safe. Also, the Patriots spent their first-round pick on N'Keal Harry, who could impact Edelman's target share and red zone usage.