Rookies to Know: Brock Bowers

With the NFL Draft rapidly approaching, Adam Nardelli helps fantasy football managers catch up on the rookie class. Next in the series is Brock Bowers, the big-play Georgia TE.

The 2023 season was a great example of how rookies can have a significant impact in fantasy football.  If you just look at the teams that made it to the conference championships this past season, the likes of Jahmyr Gibbs, Sam LaPorta, Zay Flowers, and Rashee Rice all played roles in helping their teams make deep playoff runs.  They also could have been key contributors to fantasy football managers who came away with championships of their own.  To prepare you for the 2024 NFL Draft and which players may help you find success in fantasy football, I’m starting a series on which rookies you should know well ahead of your fantasy football drafts.  Maybe you don’t follow college football as closely as you do the NFL, or the draft just isn’t your thing.

Don’t worry.  This series will help you get to know the skill position players that will likely be taken high in the upcoming NFL Draft, and as a result, will have some buzz heading into fantasy draft season.  I’ll also discuss their most likely landing spot in the draft based on betting lines and expert mock drafts, and how that will possibly help or hurt their fantasy prospects.


Brock Bowers


For part three, we go back to the SEC and dive into Georgia tight end Brock Bowers.  Over the years, tight ends have generally taken a few years to get up to speed and become real assets for fantasy football, but Lions tight end Sam LaPorta’s prolific rookie season will undoubtedly add to the expectations for Bowers to make an immediate impact.  The Napa, California native played all three of his collegiate seasons at the University of Georgia and was ultra-productive, having led the team in receiving yards each year.

It’s no surprise Bowers has been talked about as a high first-round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft for quite some time.   While he doesn’t have freakish measurables like Kyle Pitts, he’s exactly what you want in a tight end, a mismatch nightmare for opposing defenses.

Versatile and explosive are two of the best ways to describe Bowers.  Instead of just exclusively putting his hand in the dirt near the line of scrimmage, Bowers worked out of the slot 40% of the time and another 11% of the time lined up out wide.  He can be used all over the field, giving his future NFL offensive coordinator a chess piece that defenses will find hard to match up with.

He’s a chunk play waiting to happen, having averaged 8.7 yards after the catch per reception in 2023 according to PFF, which was sixth among all FBS tight ends.  He also had 18 missed tackles forced, coming in at 2nd in the large crop of tight ends in the FBS.  He always seems to find a way to get extra yards, putting his offense in better downs and distances and giving you extra fantasy points.

Danny Kelly of The Ringer noted how Bowers was often utilized on sweeps and screens at Georgia.  You often think of a Tight End barreling down the seam, which Bowers is great at as well, but the fact that he’s also a threat in the short of the field shows how he’s truly a unique offensive weapon.  At 6’3, however, he doesn’t have the prototypical tight end size.  Super-charged slot has been a term I’ve heard used for Bowers, but anyone employed as an offensive coordinator at the highest level of professional football should be more than capable of finding ways to get the ball in Bowers’ hands.

Where will Bowers end up being selected in the first round?  Early mock drafts often had Bowers going to the Chargers with the 5th pick, but with the departures of both Keenan Allen and Mike Williams, wide receiver seems like a more logical path for them if they don’t trade back.  According to DraftKings Sportsbook, Bowers is currently the betting favorite to be chosen by the Jets with the 10th pick at +135 ($100 bet to win $235 total).  While being one of the top targets for Aaron Rodgers would be a solid landing spot, personally I’d love to see how he would fit in the Bengals offense catching passes from Joe Burrow, but sliding to the 18th pick may be too much to ask.

When it comes to where Bowers is expected to be drafted in redraft fantasy leagues, Fantasy Pros’ early ADP (average draft position) data indicates Bowers is an early 9th-round pick in 12-team leagues, coming in at pick #98 overall.  While of course this will likely change depending on who he ends up with in the draft, it appears fantasy managers will be paying the Sam LaPorta tax to secure Bowers.  LaPorta’s ADP was in the 13th-14th round range heading into his rookie season in 2023, while Bowers is already on average being taken four to five rounds earlier.


Photo by David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire | Feature Image by Justin Redler (@reldernitsuj on Twitter)

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