Yeah, love is a strong word, but I believe with a little bit of convincing you'll start to love drafting these three players — all in different stages, of course — as much as I do.

One is a true love who I try to never doubt.

The second? A complicated past.

And the third is a new romance — a summer fling, if you will. 

Let's jump in…

True Love: DeVonta Smith

This offseason was a good one for Smith and the Eagles; both sides agreed to a contract extension worth $75 million that will keep the wide receiver on the team through the 2028 season. 

In 2022, Smith and A.J. Brown became the first WR tandem in Eagles history to both reach 1,000 receiving yards — and they repeated the feat in 2023. The big reason I'm high on Smith is because it's a make-or-break season for head coach Nick Sirianni — and that's going to result in a revamped, hungry offense.

The Eagles have a new offensive coordinator in Kellen Moore and that's a huge win for fantasy players. Moore didn't have his best season as OC of the Chargers in 2023 (18th in total offense and 21st in points), but his four year stint in Dallas is a far better indicator of success — the Cowboys finished top six in scoring three of four seasons with Moore on their payroll. Plus, it wasn't all bad for Moore in 2023 — especially in the context of loving Smith — as the Chargers had the third-most pass attempts in the league last year.

Clicking on Smith right now isn't cheap — he has a WR18 price tag — but it's worth it. Not every draft pick has to be a steal! We know that with Brown on the other side we can't look at Smith as a true WR1, but both players rank inside the position's top-16 most-targeted options over the past two seasons.

At the start of the 2024 season, Smith will be 25 years old and, according to Dwain McFarland's report on how age impacts wide receiver performance, ages 24 to 27 represent the typical prime years for wide receivers — meaning we should aggressively draft ascending or elite wide receivers entering this range. 

I want any slice of this Philadelphia team that I can get. Led by Jalen Hurts, this Eagles offense has ranked fifth in points per game (26.8) over the last two seasons, and Smith has logged 240 catches for 3,178 yards and 19 touchdowns over three seasons. Sign me up for a revamp and a top finish for Smith in 2024. 

It's complicated, but trust me: Kyler Murray

It's been a complicated run for Kyler Murray drafters, BUT THIS IS THE YEAR, WE SWEAR. 

For a while it was almost a no-brainer to draft Murray — he had three top-10 finishes to start his career. But since the torrid start he has only played in 11 and 8 games, respectively, over the last two seasons due to injury. However, Murray is someone I can't stop drafting this summer and I think it's going to pay off.

We saw a glimpse last season of what Murray can get back to, and since he'll be more than a year removed from his ACL injury I'm snagging him as often as I can in my drafts (especially with his QB7 price tag).

One of the concerns after his injury was if he could look like the Kyler Murray we know and love — you know… the one with all the rushing upside? In the eight games he played last season he had five games with 30 or more rushing yards. Plus, Murray had at least 17 fantasy points in six and averaged over 18 fantasy points per game. It was also his fourth-straight season as a top-10 fantasy quarterback in points per game. 

The Cardinals have also given him weapons to elevate his game, led by Marvin Harrison Jr. Harrison had the highest score in the history of the WR Super Model and should open up this offense. Throw in Trey McBride (who was one of Murray's favorite targets last year), James Conner, Michael Wilson and Zay Jones — this looks like an offense that is underrated and perhaps not given the proper amount of respect. 

Murray has the high-volume rushing upside that we always want to aim for in fantasy football drafts. His career average of 37.7 rushing yards per game trails just Lamar Jackson, Justin Fields, Mike Vick, Jalen Hurts, Josh Allen, and Cam Newton

He is also one of the few quarterbacks with the realistic ability to reach 4,000 passing yards if everything goes right. 

Fantasy Life projects Murray for 465 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns on top of 3,633 passing yards and 21 passing touchdowns. 

Sign. Me. Up. I love Kyler Murray this season and think he could be one of the biggest quarterback values in 2024.

New love: Rome Odunze

I want to preface this by saying that my love for Rome Odunze is slightly influenced by the fact that he went to the University of Washington (go Huskies!). Alright? Now let's continue.

We heard this line a lot during the NFL Draft process: if Marvin Harrison Jr. and Malik Nabers weren't there, then Rome Odunze would have been the best receiver on the board. It just so happens that he had elite company heading into the draft:

Odunze landed in a situation with mixed reviews for fantasy football. The Chicago Bears are entering a new era with Caleb Williams as their starting quarterback and their wide receiver trio now consists of DJ Moore, Keenan Allen and Odunze. This could limit Odunze's performance for 2024 because both Moore and Allen are coming off 26% and 30% target-share seasons, respectively. 

Fantasy Life projections have Odunze as a clear WR3 in the pecking order in terms of raw targets (97) and PPR points (167.8), putting him at WR49.

While we NEVER want any players to get hurt, Odunze would vie for the WR3 with WR2 upside role if either Moore or Allen went down. I want exposure to Odunze, even though the path that we talked about is not as easy as other rookie wide receivers. 

Right now on Underdog, Odunze is going around Chris Godwin, Xavier Worthy, and Jordan Addison — and is a full round after Keenan Allen

Don't be afraid to add Odunze at a cheaper price because of his competition. WE BELIEVE IN YOU, ROME.