I tried to save some time on my 2023 fantasy football rankings by having Chat GPT do them. Unfortunately, Chat GPT’s 2023 PPR fantasy football rankings seem even more outrageous than my own:
Looks artificial intelligence might have a little ways to go in the fantasy football advice and ranking department. Truth be told, Chat GPT’s list is just as good as any. Sure, Karama, Hopkins, and Zeke are scorching hot takes in the top 10. But at the end of the day, all fantasy analysts are just making their best guess when putting 2023 fantasy football rankings together. At least Chat GPT isn’t a sheep! Anyway, here’s my way-too-early top 10 for 2023 half PPR leagues:
1. Saquon Barkley – Ranking a free agent running back #1 overall in half PPR leagues might feel spicey, but Saquon’s performance was electric in 2022. He looks in his prime, and while I expect he’s back in New York for 2023, a new destination could be a blessing. Check that, the Giants just slapped the franchise tag on him—he’s still my numero uno.
2. Ja’Marr Chase – I’ve been monitoring early offseason draft results on high-stakes sites like NFFC and FFPC. It’s a small sample—that’s what she said!—but Justin Jefferson is consistently being taken ahead of Chase. No offense to El Jeffe, he’s a legit superstar and I’d be thrilled to have him on my team. But Chase is a generational talent in the better offense. 10 times out of 10 I’ll take the guy with his wagon hitched to Joe Burrow rather than Kirk Cousins.
3. Austin Ekeler – Speaking of these early draft results, can anyone explain why Christian McCaffrey is consistently being drafted ahead of Austin Ekeler? This feels like some sort of name-brand mass hypnosis. Was there a big CMC marketing campaign that I missed? Ekeler has 38 touchdowns and 177 receptions over the past two seasons in a high-powered offense that’s fully committed to him. There’s a great argument for him at #1 overall in any PPR format.
4. Justin Jefferson – The Chase blurb above was all about Chase, no disrespect was meant to Jefferson nor his supporters. He’s only 24 years old and has continued to improve his numbers each season. I have nothing negative to say about Jefferson except that his mustache is a little thin. I’d try some mustache oil on that baby. JJeff could easily be the number one fantasy player if things break right—many drafters are banking on it.
5. Stefon Diggs – Diggs rounds out the top tier of wide receivers and we’re really splitting hairs between him, Chase, and Jefferson. I’m not betting on it, but Diggs lands at #3 because there’s a chance he begins to slow a little as he hits age 30. On the flip side, his veteran experience shouldn’t be discounted and his QB/offense combo isn’t too shabby either.
6. Jonathan Taylor – I’m seeing JT going outside the top 10 in these winter drafts and it doesn’t make sense to me. He was the consensus #1 pick last season and was hampered the whole year by a week 4 ankle injury. According to SI, Taylor ended up having minimally invasive ankle surgery in January to “remove small amounts of broken cartilage and tissue in an attempt to reduce pain and improve movement. The surgery was successful, and Taylor was able to go home the same day. No structural damage was found on his right ankle.” This sounds like great news for the 24-year-old star in the prime of his career, still running behind a solid offensive line.
7. Travis Kelce – A 34-year-old tight end at number seven in my rankings, I never thought I’d see the day. Could it be a trap? Possibly. Kelce won’t stay on top forever. But he’s Mahomes’ number-one receiver and the track record speaks for itself. Kelce’s so much more valuable than the rest of his cohort. Regardless, I’ll still have a tough time pulling the trigger over the three stars below.
8. Cooper Kupp – Recency bias is huge in fantasy football. What has Kupp done for us lately? Nothing! He missed the last two months of the season, so those zeros are fresh in our minds. But the man was absolutely dominant for the previous season and a half, belonging up at the top of the WR rankings with Chase, Jefferson, and Diggs. He falls just below that tier due to minor uncertainty around his ankle surgery rehab along Stafford and the Rams’ 2022 struggles, but I’ll still draft Kupp confidently.
9. Christian McCaffrey – CMC is clearly great, I’m just not sure why he’s being drafted as the top RB ahead of Saquon, Ekeler, and Taylor. My (minor) concerns are twofold. 1) We all know Shanahan loves to use multiple backs, see: Mitchell, Elijah. 2) McCaffrey missed 23 games across the 2020 and 2021 seasons, so health is far from a given after handling 329 touches in 2022. Granted, the #1 overall upside is still real, let’s just keep the equally real risk factors in mind.
10. Tyreek Hill – This is a tough ranking. If the Tua concussion concerns weren’t so serious, Tyreek would be right up next to Diggs. Without Mahomes, Hill posted a career year in receptions (119) and receiving yards (1,710) in 2022, while sharing targets with another alpha—Jaylen Waddle. Pretty incredible, and somewhat reminiscent of when Diggs left Minnesota to join Josh Allen and the Bills. If Tua can manage to play a full season then expect Hill to once again find himself in the top tier of fantasy receivers.