Fantasy football: Matt Bowen's favorite draft targets

There are lots of reasons for excitement about Lamar Jackson this season, including what he could do in Todd Monken's system. Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

After doing weekly fantasy football mock drafts this summer at ESPN, now is the time when I really start to focus on my top draft targets. Sure, the numbers play a role here. So does the tape. I want playmakers and upside on my roster. And sometimes I just go with my gut based on offensive schemes, anticipated deployment and exceptional traits, which can create fantasy production.

Today, I'm giving you four players per position from my draft board, in multiple tiers. There are quarterbacks with elite mobility, dual-threat running backs, explosive-play pass-catchers, late-round fliers and more.

So, let's get into it. Here are my favorite fantasy draft targets for the 2023 NFL season.


Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (32.7 ADP, QB4)

Jackson averaged 19.6 fantasy PPG in 12 games last season, in an offense that leaned on reduced formations and multiple-TE sets. However, with new Ravens offensive coordinator Todd Monken calling the plays in a system that will create much more space for Jackson as both a runner and thrower, I'm all-in here. Even with the availability concerns -- Jackson has missed five games in each of the past two seasons -- his electric, dual-threat traits can be maximized in Monken's spread, trips and empty sets. And Baltimore upgraded the pass-catching talent on the perimeter, too.