Average draft position (ADP) is a statistic in fantasy football that describes the most common draft position of a particular player. When members of a fantasy football league enter a draft, they have access to the ADP of each player, which indicates the average spot in which each player has been drafted in all existing fantasy leagues up to that point. Average draft position is widely based on the projected number of points each player will contribute to a fantasy team throughout the course of the season. Players that are expected to perform exceptionally well and score lots of points tend to have a high ADP, while players that appear to be headed for disappointing seasons have a lower ADP.
Average draft position can be a useful tool in determining the fantasy value of players. ADP is most useful when a member of the league cannot decide which player to select with the current pick. For example, if a manager is unsure of who to take with the 21st pick of the draft, ADP can help make the decision easier by showing which players other managers felt comfortable selecting at that point in the draft.
ADP also helps reveal hidden value, as players not originally thought to be solid fantasy contributors may have a relatively high ADP. This trend is indicative of long-time fantasy football managers having a great deal of faith in those particular players, which generally makes them strong selections.
Similarly, ADP reveals when a manager is thinking about "reaching" for a player. The term reaching is used to refer to a situation in which a player is overvalued and should not be taken ahead of other available players. Overvaluations can occur for a number of reasons, including recency bias (dwelling on a player's performance from the previous year) and loyalty factors (selecting a player that plays for the manager's favorite team).
Due to the real-life importance of their positions and tendency to put up big fantasy numbers, quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers often have the highest average draft positions. Defenses and kickers are considered less indispensable and are usually selected in later rounds of the draft.