Continue reading this content with a PRO subscription.
"Footballguys is the best premium
fantasy football only site on the planet."
Matthew Berry, ESPN
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: 6.5.2022: I will be filling in my commentary on all listed players by no later than 6.13.2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Taylor still has untapped receiving upside and Matt Ryan's addition is poised to increase the efficiency of the offense to move the chains, sustain drives, and provide Taylor with red zone opportunities. While not on Christian McCaffrey's level to lap the position in fantasy scoring, Taylor is in the next tier of running backs.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Jonathan Taylor is exactly who you want from your elite running back. Youth, durability, touchdowns, rushing yardage, receptions and receiving yardage. As safe as you can get at running back. Perfect in any format, PPR, Best Ball and Dynasty.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: One of the few workhorses in the NFL, and returns to the same situation that made him elite in 2021, save for an upgrade at quarterback. The easy choice as the first overall pick in most leagues.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Taylor blends youth, home run ability, reliance within the team's offensive structure, and a dominant run-blocking line to stand as the clear top back. Taylor saw nearly double the red zone rush attempts (85) as the second-place finisher (Austin Ekeler, 46), and 51 receiving targets in his second season is in range with a back like Dalvin Cook.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: Taylor was the best running back in fantasy in 2021 and the team got better this offseason. With Matt Ryan running the offense, Taylor can probably expect better usage in the passing game and not take the presumed large step back in touchdowns. He may not find the endzone 20 times again but he won't have to in order to remain the RB1 in fantasy. There is no safer first round pick
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Jonathan Taylor is one of the safest running back picks in the first round of drafts, let alone the best. He has 32 touchdowns in his first two years and he is coming off 1,800 yards rushing. At age 23 he is still young to be concerned with overuse. The Colts have tailored their offense to fit Taylor's game. He is as safe as they come regarding fantasy picks.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If McCaffrey stays healthy, he's an elite fantasy producer. After two seasons where he has missed 23 of 33 possible games after earning over 700 touches in two years, I need proof that the 26-year-old McCaffrey can stay healthy to earn an elite starters workload before considering him a safe top-12 pick in re-draft.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Injuries have marred McCaffrey for two seasons, but his per-game dominance when healthy is still a fantasy trump card. A player is injury prone until they are not. If McCaffrey is healthy, he has starting-two-players-in-your-lineup upside.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Christian McCaffrey cannot continue to be one of the high draft picks in all formats in fantasy leagues. In the last two years he has finished just over a handful of games fit and healthy. The last time he played in and completed four games in a row was in 2019. Running Back is one position where time moves on quickly. The Panthers wanted to trade him, but other teams baulked at his injuries and price tag. At his best, sure he deserves to be considered as the first running back off the board. In 2022, you risk losing your draft at a higher chance than winning it if he is on your roster.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: McCaffrey's injury history and the Panthers' dismal offensive outlook should be enough to keep McCaffrey off first-round draft boards. But when he plays, he's capable of more than almost anyone else in the league. I love the risk/reward of him as a second-round pick, but someone in your league probably takes him in the first.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Since 2018 McCaffrey has been a force in fantasy when available. That is the rub; he has only played 10 of a possible 33 games in the past two seasons. The team added D'Onta Foreman, an early-down bruiser, and how much of McCaffrey's workload he takes is an open question. Redzone could be the real question; in his dominant 2019, McCaffrey led the league with 17 attempts inside the five; if Foreman can chip into that role, the ceiling may not be what we have come to expect.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: It has been a wild ride for managers drafting McCaffrey over the last two seasons. When he plays, no one is close to him in fantasy. He puts up quarterback numbers from the running back slot. He lets you play Super Flex in a single quarterback league. Unfortunately, he's played just 10 games in that span. He's still worth the gamble in every draft, because injuries are a risk for every one, but not every one can win you your week in a single game.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: It's difficult to believe Christian McCaffrey was snake-bitten with injuries in each of the last two years. He conditions himself extremely well and is hellbent on returning to form. He'll be running behind an improved offensive line which should help his rushing game. If he can stay healthy he has the ability to lead all running backs in fantasy points.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: It's understandable that much of the fantasy space regards Ekeler as an elite producer once again in 2022. His proven production and consecutive years of warding off the challenge for playing time from recent draft picks are two big reason. However, I contend none of the late-round picks were really a legitimate challenge. They were bargain attempts. This year, the Chargers added Isaiah Spiller, closer to a premium prospect the team has drafted at the position since taking Melvin Gordon several years ago. While I expect Ekeler to remain an RB1 -- perhaps a top-five RB--but Spiller will lower Ekeler's production ceiling enough to keep Spiller outside the top five across all positions.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The Chargers added Isaiah Spiller in the NFL Draft, but that is more of a statement about the rest of the Chargers running backs than discounting Austin Ekeler's upside. There are easy decisions in fantasy football and targeting the starting running back with big receiving upside for the Chargers offense is one of the easy buttons.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Career highs, by a long way, in rushing attempts, rushing yardage and most importantly touchdowns for Austin Ekeler . Any doubts about his ability to be the lead back were clearly dispelled. The Chargers add another later round running back in Isaiah Spiller, but he poses no threat. A safe proposition in all formats, although in dynasty he is already 27. His light use should prolong him safely with good health
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Ekeler has no holes in his game, even his durability has improved after a few seasons of spotty availability.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Ekeler's breakout 2021 was buoyed by touchdowns (20 total, nine more than his previous high). In 2020 the red zone opportunities were split between three backs (Ekeler, Kallen Ballage, and Joshua Kelley, all 24-27). That usage shifted to 65 Ekeler, 25 Justin Jackson, a ratio that mirrored OC Joe Lombardi's time in New Orleans, splitting work between Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram. There is reason to believe Ekeler's role can keep up with the addition of Isaiah Spiller.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: The Chargers offense is one of my favorites for fantasy football this year and that translates to another great season for Austin Ekeler. No back in the league outside of Christian McCaffrey does what Ekeler can in the passing game and his rushing numbers caught up to that production in 2021. Remember that yardage is your goal in non-PPR leagues, and don't let Ekeler's perceived role as a receiving-back scare you off.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Austin Eleker is a two-way weapon as a rusher and receiver. He's on a strong offense and has shown that he can be relied upon as a scorer, topping 20 touchdowns last year (12 rushing, 8 receiving). He's a top 3 fantasy pick this year.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kupp likely had a career year in 2021, but it doesn't mean a decline in production takes him below the fantasy WR mark. His route running, YAC, and sure hands make him an excellent target inside and outside the hash. The only thing to monitor is Matt Stafford's throwing elbow, which required an injection this spring. If Stafford's elbow remains a problem and forces him out of the lineup, Kupp's value becomes far more volatile. The upside is still strong, but the downside could be a lot worse.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: While touchdown regression is a strong likelihood after 16 scores a year ago, Kupp is the WR1 for an offense paired with Matthew Stafford and Sean McVay. Also, Robert Woods exits and Allen Robinson, off a career-worst season, enters as a potential replacement.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Cooper Kupp almost broke the Calvin Johnson receiving yards record and the Michael Thomas reception record. Add in 16 touchdowns and his lead in fantasy points over the second ranked receiver, Davante Adams, was almost embarrassing. It stands to reason that a historical season like Kupps 2021 year will be impossible to match or even get close to. Allen Robinson comes over and maybe even Odell Beckham comes back. Kupp could drop by a huge number of fantasy points and still be the number one fantasy receiver. A safe investment in all formats.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Kupp just delivered the best fantasy season in NFL history. While regression is almost assured, he could fall back a lot and still be this year's No. 1 receiver. He's an easy first-rounder in every league.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: Even having Kupp at WR2 after what he did last season feels weird. The fact is that his 2021 was historical and asking to repeat that feels like a stretch. With 60 more targets than he has ever seen in a season, he caught 76% of the balls thrown his way, 4% higher than his career average. Regression seems inevitable. He is locked in as a top-5 wide receiver but a step back keeps him from the top spot.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Allen Robinson should not command much more attention than Robert Woods / Odell Beckham Jr. did in 2021, setting the stage for Kupp as the clear top wide receiver. Kupp's 191 targets were staggering, 22 more than the second-place Davante Adams and Diontae Johnson. He completed the second-highest season in receptions and receiving yards.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Cooper Kupp was a tremendous offensive weapon for the championship Rams in 2021. He will once again be the top target for Matthew Stafford and should pick up where he left off. He has a sharp mind for the game which gives him an edge to be leaned on by his team, but he also knows how to take advantage of defenders who face him. He's the top wide receiver in the league and that's not changing in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Jefferson has averaged 98 catches, 1,508 yards, and nearly 9 scores during his first two years in the league. He's a versatile primary option in an offense that plans to spread the field even more than in the past. There's no reason to think Jefferson won't have another elite season.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Jefferson elevated his lofty rookie season game to new heights in 2021, averaging nearly 100 yards per game and logging 10 touchdowns. There is touchdown upside still in play for Jefferson to hit a WR1 overall finish as Adam Thielen devolves into being a quality option, but a clearly secondary one, in the Vikings passing game.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: After a dynamic rookie season, Justin Jefferson followed up with an even better second season. With a new coaching group, there always has to be a slight hesitation in an established or rising star. Surprisingly Jefferson still has further improvement in bis game and is a safe option at the top of almost all formats.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Jefferson followed up an exceptional rookie season with an All-Pro caliber 2021 with 108 receptions, 1,630 yards, and 10 touchdowns. He's one of a handful of receivers worth a first-round pick.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: For a number of reasons, 2022 seems like the year we see Jefferson take the crown as the WR1 in all of fantasy football. He was 4th in the league in targets last season but his situation feels more stable than the three receivers ahead of him. Adam Thielen seems like regression is a moment away and there is nothing resembling a 1B on this roster. Jefferson could approach 180 targets and it brings a smile to my face to think what he could do with that volume.
Jeff Bell on May 31: No player has accumulated more receiving yards in the past two seasons than Jefferson, with 3,016. Kevin O'Connell brings in elements of a Rams' system that aided Cooper Kupp's record-threatening 2021 season. The stage is set for Jefferson to flirt with an overall WR1 finish.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: In two years Justin Jefferson has developed into an alpha receiver with one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the game in Kirk Cousins. Another year of top targets and clutch touchdowns is expected.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Steelers have a sub-par offensive line, but it didn't stop Harris from earning elite production due to his ability and a high volume of touches and targets. Despite word that Harris won't see as much work this year, look for Harris' volume to remain strong enough to earn fantasy RB1 value. Although the offensive line won't be much better and the quarterbacks are less experienced with the retirement of Ben Roethlisberger, Harris' receiving chops should be enough to sustain starter production. His floor is RB2 production, which makes him safe despite predictions from some that he won't be elite.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Harris is one of the few foundation back profiles and the Steelers offense cannot be much worse through the air than the 2021 version with an eyeing-retirement Ben Roethlisberger. Harris' floor is within the top-15 of the position with top-five a strong possibility.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Najee Harris had a fantastic rookie season with 300 rushing attempts, 10 touchdown and even 74 receptions. The departure of Ben Roethlisberger means he should be even more potent and key to the Steelers success. Greater mobility at quarterback can only help further. Safe near the top in all formats.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Harris wasn't particularly efficient on a per-touch basis, but that doesn't matter to fantasy managers if he's going to get 20+ touches per game. Monitor training camp as Harris allegedly put on significant weight this offseason. But if he rounds into shape, draft in the first round with confidence.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Harris's 94 receiving targets led all NFL RBs. No back has a firmer grip on a bellcow role in his team's offense. The only thing holding Harris back is questions about his offensive line and quarterback, two significant concerns. Harris's opportunity share gives him a chance at finishing as the overall RB1.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: Pittsburgh's offensive line was as bad as advertised in 2021 and Harris still got the job done for fantasy managers. While his 3.9 yards per carry were not pretty, volume made up for it. A rookie year of 381 touches is what fantasy managers dream of and his 10 touchdowns were icing on the cake. However, expectations of massive improvement may be overblown. While Ben Roethlisberger was bad, are we sure Mitch Trubisky is better? And the Steelers did not do a lot to improve their offensive line. Harris is sure to see the bulk of the carries but if Trubisky doesn't throw to the running back the way that Roethlisberger did, a step back is not out of the question.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Najee Harris was effective as a rookie, making a splash as a rusher and receiver despite a sub-par Steelers offensive line. At worst he will receive a ton of volume and will contribute on every possession. At best, he continues to develop, the Steelers offense thrives, and Harris is one of the top 3 fantasy running backs in the league.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'm not expecting Henry to threaten season records this year, but I'm not anticipating a quick demise after an injury-shortened 2021. Tennessee's offense continues to revolve around Henry and the ground game. He's a good bet for 1,600-1,900 total yards.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Tennessee did not aggressively address the position in the NFL Draft and A.J. Brown is gone in a draft day trade. The Titans offense will run through Henry again in 2022. The biggest question is when the wheels like fall off of the power back at his escalating age and workload.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: With the departure of A.J. Brown and Ryan Tannehill under pressure, expect the Titans to continue working Derrick Henry into the dirt. Missing eight games last year was the first setback in his career recently and given hi advancing age and toll the position takes, those in Dynasty leagues may seek to reap maximum benefit. For redraft and best ball leagues he will be the anchor of your lineup.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Henry finally succumbed to a meaningful injury last year, and that may signal the end of his 350+ touch annual workload. But the Titans didn't add anyone credible to spell him for more than a few series. Buy the bounceback.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Henry's usage puts him in the same tier as Taylor in standard leagues, though passing game involvement lowers him in PPR formats. There is little concern about rebounding from the injury that cost most of the 2021 season. The most significant question mark is a passing game that loses A.J. Brown and saw Ryan Tannehill with his lowest passer rating since 2015 and 14 interceptions, the second-highest in his career.
Jeff Haseley on May 27: Derrick Henry was Mr. Unstoppable for several years. Then, a foot injury slowed his progress. What if the foot injury is the beginning of the end of his elite career? If anyone can bulldoze his way through an injury and come out the other side, it's Henry. However, I can also see him being less of a dominant force as a result of his injury and the wear and tear his body is accumulating.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: The biggest concern we all must bake into drafting Henry is what the workload will look like in 2022. After 303 carries in 2019 and 378 in 2020, he was on pace for 418 in 2021. An injury cut that workload in half but it is clear that the Titans have no issue feeding him the ball over and over again. With the loss of AJ Brown and no threat added at running back, it is clear that philosophy shouldn't change much, but can his body handle it?
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'm drafting early not based solely on which player has the most upside, but which players have the highest floor in addition to high upside. Mixon's skills, offense, age, and supporting cast all make him one of the safest bets in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Joe Mixon enjoys a depth chart without a strong RB2 presence and leading a high-powered Bengals offense. Mixon hit a career-high in fantasy production in 2021, fueled by 16 total touchdowns. Still, the lone missing piece from an elite finish is improving on his 42 receptions from a year ago.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: With the Cincinnati Bengals having their best season in generations, Joe Mixon welcomed the improvement in the passing game by having a career year. Double digit touchdowns, career highs in receiving and rushing yardage all suggest he may be in for another peak season in 2022. The Bengals offense is young and still improving. One of the safer elite running backs out there.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: The Bengals' improbable run to the Super Bowl came thanks to the Burrow/Chase/Higgins passing breakthrough, but Joe Mixon's value didn't take a hit in the process; it improved. Expect another dynamic RB1 season in 2022.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Mixon saw career highs in rushing yards (1,205) and touchdowns (13). The most considerable improvement may have been in the passing game; he posted an 88% catch rate, ten percentage points higher than his average over the previous three seasons. Through week 14, he saw 2.4 targets per game; from week 15 to the Super Bowl, that increased to 5.33. That usage would add ~35 receptions and ~270 yards to his rec totals. His clear top-back status in an explosive offense primes him for his best fantasy season.
Jeff Haseley on May 27: Joe Mixon quietly finished as the #3 running back in 2021 thanks to 16 touchdowns, 1,205 yards rushing, and 42 receptions. The Bengals offense has arrived and Mixon is gaining steam. I can see him finishing in the top 5 if he stays healthy and the Bengals offense remains one of the best in the AFC.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: The Bengals offense was already good in 2021 and got better where it matters most in the 2022 offseason: the offensive line. Last year marked the first top-5 finish of his career but there is no reason to expect a big step back. The lack of elite receiving numbers caps his chance to hit the top spot but another trip to the Top 5 is certainly within his grasp.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: 6.5.2022: I will be filling in my commentary on all listed players by no later than 6.13.2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Chase's big-play-infused rookie season is regression-worthy with his touchdown rate and yards-per-reception. That said, Chase is attached to Joe Burrow and expect the offense to funnel through Chase and Tee Higgins again. Both with a high floor.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: After a phenomenal rookie season, how does JaMarr Chase follow that up in 2022? Opposing defenses will have studied him and will have a plan of attack, but Justin Jefferson proved that a high bar can be cleared and excelled upon in year 2. Safe in all formats with a high draft pick.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: After a rough preseason in the media, Chase could not have had a better rookie season. Over 1400 yards and 13 TDs is just about as good as it gets, and in fantasy you love seeing a rookie finish in the Top 5. The Bengals did nothing but improve this offseason, especially on the offensive line. If Joe Burrow has more time for Chase to beat defenses, the big plays are likely to continue in 2022. Chase has one of the highest ceilings in fantasy football and should be considered a late first-round pick for fantasy.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Chase had the second-best rookie season in league history (Randy Moss in 1998), and could easily string together a series of No. 1 overall seasons starting in 2022.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Chase finished fourth in receiving yards (1,455) and third in receiving touchdowns (13). He did that on 128 targets, approximately 40 less than anyone who ranked above him in receiving yards. The only question on Chase is volume, the Bengals were bottom half in pass attempts, and he is in a crowded situation with Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Ja'Marr Chase exploded onto the scene with over 1,400 yards receiving and 13 touchdowns. His longtime rapport with Joe Burrow is paying dividends in the NFL and Chase has proven that he can be a threat against the league's top corners and defenses. He is worthy of being one of the top 3 wide receivers selected in drafts this season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Cook will likely earn a bump for me as the summer progresses, because the Vikings intend to spread the field and use its All-Pro's receiving skills more often. That said, Cooks' best receiving campaign came in 2019: 63 targets, 53 catches, 519 yards, and no touchdowns. He's only had a three touchdowns receiving during his five-year career and he has never played more than 14 games in the NFL. As the years unfold, I'm less likely to project a full 16-game season for a running back who has never done it and I'm hesitant to project more than 60-65 targets for a running back on a team loaded with three good receivers and a capable tight end. Unless you're expecting Kirk Cousins to deliver a top-three fantasy season, which is possible but not probable, I'm not as bullish on Cook as an elite producer. He's a great back in a situation that will lead to good numbers, but not elite production.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: One of the few elite two-way running backs in the NFL, tied to a quality quarterback and two wide receivers to boot. Cook is one of the easy Round 1 picks for 2022
Andy Hicks on Jun 17: Dalvin Cook had a down year and missed his usual few games in 2021. The biggest concern was the significant drop in touchdowns. A new coaching staff is a concern, especially as his salary cap number rises and getting cheap at the position is relatively easy. At his best he is an elite fantasy back. I would still rate him highly, but maybe drop him back in dynasty leagues for future worth,
Jeff Bell on Jun 16: Cook had his most disappointing fantasy season in 2018 though it's easy to point to environmental factors. The Vikings offense was down as a whole and the primary driver behind Cookâ€™s drop was 16 touchdowns down to 6. New coach Kevin Oâ€™Connell should revive the offense and Cook is one of the few backs who are not in some level of a timeshare.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Cook has never played more than 14 games and is coming off a 13-game campaign that saw his touchdown tally drop from double digits to just six scores. He needs the touchdown tally to rebound to justify his mid-first round ADP.
Jeff Haseley on May 27: I am a bit concerned with Dalvin Cook's lack of reliability when it comes to playing a full season. He has played 11, 14, 14, and 13 games in each of the last four years. He is still a top 15 running back, but top 5 may be a stretch.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: Cook is in a weird spot for perceived fantasy value. He has rushed for over 1000 yards for three straight seasons, added healthy receiving numbers in that same span, and scores plenty of touchdowns. However, he has also missed multiple games in every season of his career and is reaching the point where fantasy managers are waiting for the other shoe to drop. You draft Cook knowing that he is likely to miss games and that you probably need to add Alexander Mattison a full round ahead of his current ADP.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Diggs is in his prime on an offense in its prime. An easy first-round target.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Diggs has 230 receptions over his two seasons with Buffalo. Few receivers have as high of a floor as Diggs, paired with Josh Allen, and no notable additions to the passing game.
Jeff Bell on Jun 16: Much is made of Stefon Diggs "disappointing" 2021 season when he finished WR7. His targets stayed consistent (166 in 2020 to 164 in 2021) but his catch rate plummeted (76.5% to 62.8%). Volume will be there and a rebound in efficiency puts him back to his 2020 finish of WR3.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: Diggs is one of the best and most consistent wide receivers in fantasy. With the way Josh Allen runs and spreads the touchdowns around, Diggs probably won't finish as the overall WR1, but he is a guaranteed top-10 option with top-5 upside.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: After leading the league in catches and yards in 2020, Diggs came back to Earth in 2021 but was still masterful (103 receptions, 1,225 yards, 10 touchdowns). As long as Josh Allen is healthy, Diggs will be heavily targeted and productive.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Cooper Kupp, Justin Jefferson, Ja'Marr Chase, and Stefon Diggs should be among your top 4 fantasy wide receivers drafted in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Detroit's opponents gave the Lions room to throw the ball in the shallow zones. This is only natural when a defense faces an offense in catch-up mode and/or tight game scripts with inexperienced or underwhelming wideouts. With the Lions forced to dink and dunk to move downfield, Swift reached the ceiling of his potential last year. A high-volume receiver, Swift was among the least effective starters between the tackles in the NFL last year, which was a known weakness of this game heading into the campaign. The Lions had a weak receiving corps to begin the 2021 season and the new additions to the corps weren't match-up field stretchers. D.J. Chark and potentially, Jameson Williams will change that. So will a healthy T.J. Hockenson. Expect Swift to provide starter value, but not RB1 value in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The biggest pause with Swift is if he will be used like a feature back or a complimentary one. If optimized like an Alvin Kamara or Christian McCaffrey type in the passing game, then 150 rushes are enough to get him into the strong RB1 conversation.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: We're giving Swift a lot of credit considering he's been unable to stay on the field in either of his first two seasons. 1,069 yards and 7 touchdowns last year hardly justify his current ADP, so if you draft him realize it's because you think he can significantly build off what we've already seen.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: His per game numbers make him a top-5 fantasy running back if he can play the full season. Receptions are a big part of his production but their wide receiver corps is improved and healthy, so that could dip a little. However, he can handle a lot more carries than we saw last year and the competition behind him is not nearly as talented.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: D'Andre Swift is one of few dominant dual-threat running backs in the league. He has proven that he can be a weapon as a receiver but his rushing prowess hasn't reached its full potential. If he can routinely top 100 total yards per contest he will be one of the best fantasy running backs in the league.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Adams is among the top route runners in the NFL and reunites with old college teammate Derek Carr, who is coming off a career year. That said, collegiate rapport between quarterbacks and receivers is different than NFL rapport. Expect Carr and Adams to combine for strong production, but the elite numbers for Adams may not come until 2023. Much of this has to do with the small differences between what Carr can do and what Rodgers does.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Adams' trade to the Raiders affects the upside of Hunter Renfrow and Darren Waller more pushing down Adams' range of outcomes in 2022.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Now into his ninth year, Davante Adams is a guy you rank high, but worry about how he adapts to Derek Carr and the Raiders. Carr is a good quarterback, but he isnâ€™t Aaron Rodgers. He also will hit 30 this year making his dynasty stock start to drop. He probably makes a better best ball prospect than redraft prospect this year, but his timing with Carr needs to be watched carefully in training camp. His huge paycheck may be difficult to recoup for fantasy managers and expectations should be managed.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Adams leaves the comfortable confines of Green Bay and reunites with his college quarterback, Derek Carr. It would be absurd to expect the same numbers in Las Vegas, but Adams is too talented not to be a No. 1 fantasy option again.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: I have two concerns regarding Davante Adams with the Raiders in 2022. His volume won't be the same, and his quarterback is a step down. It all points to a drop-off in production compared to what we've seen in the past.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I expect Kelce to have a strong season as the leading target-getter for the Chiefs and deliver as one of the top 2-3 tight ends in fantasy football. However, the Chiefs traded away Tyreek Hill, the most dangerous receiving weapon in the game, after the offense failed to force opposing defenses out of Drop-Eight/Cover 2 looks. Expect more of this across the NFL and while Kelce should earn a lot of targets, I'm expecting fewer big plays without Hill. I'm also expecting fewer big plays for most tight ends in the NFL because seam shots aren't as prevalent or advisable against these coverage types.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Tyreek Hill is gone, leaving Kelce as the most bankable producer on the Chiefs offense. The biggest quibble with Kelce is a potential age fall-off after a slip to 92-1125-9 in 2021. However, Kelce is one of the safest usage projections of the tight end position where finishing outside of TE3/4 is tough to project.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Travis Kelce is defying age and continues his unparalleled level of production at the tight end positiom. Six consecutive 1000 yard seasons and with the departure of Tyreek Hill, the sure fire number one target in an explosive offense. Surely at some stage his age catches up to him, so in dynasty leagues you have to decide whether to ride him until the end or trade him for younger options.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Father Time is undefeated, but Tyreek Hill's trade to Miami all but guarantees Kelce will sit atop the tight end rankings for at least another season.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: For the first time in 5 years, Kelce was not the TE1 last season. He didn't fall far, finishing 2nd best at the position. With the Chiefs losing Tyreek Hill, Kelce feels like a good bet to reclaim his throne in 2022 and top-2 is probably his floor. At 32 years old, there is risk but he is still worthy of being the top tight end drafted early in the 2nd Round of fantasy drafts.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Will Travis Kelce rack up the yards and receptions now that Tyreek Hill is out of the picture or was Hill the catalyst in Kelce's success? I'm predicting a slight drop-off from his regular production.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Fournette has earned criticism for his freelancing of his route running and he showed up to camp 10-20 pounds overweight. Not a good sign for a runner whose conditioning came into question early in his career in Jacksonville. Even so, Fournette is a good back when in shape and has proven his value in the Buccaneers' system. I have more questions about him this year due to the conditioning and his value drops slightly as a result, but not out of the realm of choosing him as a starter if his ADP continues to decline without additional news about his behavior.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Few running backs project as double-digit touchdown and 50 or more reception upside while on a strong offense. Leonard Fournette checks each of those boxes with top-five overall upside at the position.
Andy Hicks on Jun 22: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers let Ronald Jones go in the off-season. The last two third-round draft picks in Keâ€™Shawn Vaughn and Rachaad White are backups only. Itâ€™s an excellent situation for Leonard Fournette to turn patchy moments of excellence into a season of elite production. Ever since the run to the Superbowl win in the 2020 season, Fournette has been a fantasy monster. With elite production as a receiver as well, Double-digit touchdowns are his baseline for 2022, elevating him into one of the better fantasy options.. His reasonable three year contract extension extends life into his dynasty career and I would consider double digit touchdowns his baseline for 2022, elevating him into one of the better fantasy options.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Fournette is being drafted at his floor and presents massive upside. Last year, the 27-year-old running back had his best season since his rookie year, with over 1200 total yards and ten touchdowns. The best part of his game for fantasy purposes was his usage in the passing game. Reeling in 69 catches on 84 targets was the type of volume that makes a good back great for fantasy. While Fournette will lose occasional snaps to Rachaad White, Giovani Bernard, and Ke'Shawn Vaughn, it is not likely to be enough to knock him out of the fantasy Top 10.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Fournette was nothing short of spectacular last season, and the Buccaneers are bringing the gang back for one more Super Bowl push.
Jeff Bell on May 31: Fournette seized the RB1 job in Tampa Bay and used 84 targets to finish as RB4 in PPR PPG. It's worth noting that Fournette only saw 64% of the rushing load but returned his most efficient season with 4.5. With Ronald Jones gone and a rookie in Rachaad White splitting the backfield, Fournette is in a position to exceed his strong 2021.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Leonard Fournette is coming off a top 12 finish, his highest rank since his rookie season with Jacksonville. Fournette nearly doubled Ronald Jones in carries last season and he was an often-used target from Tom Brady catching 69 passes. Tampa Bay drafted Rachaad White to be an understudy to Fournette but also be a contributor as a pass-catching back. How much will relegated to White in 2022 is unknown. Will White see the field often as a rookie in Brady's offense? The answer to that may give a clue as to how effective Fournette will be as a fantasy back. Either way, Fournette is still the team's top rushing threat, especially on the goal line. Look for White to equal Ronald Jones' 2021 carry share with an increase in targets.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Lamb increased his production in every category in 2021 and is poised to do the same in 2022, especially with Amari Cooper gone and Michael Gallup's rehab likely to take him into early fall. Still, there are enough weapons in this offense for Lamb to continue earning a strong target share. Lamb's work from the slot will earn him strong target volume and his YAC and speed will also generate big-play targets.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Lamb will be a popular elite breakout candidate for strong WR1 numbers. However, Michael Gallup was a serious hindrance to Lamb before his injury and projects to return in 2022. Lamb has a high floor, but the elite ceiling is still a bit of a projection based on results to date.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: There are questions about Lamb's ability to dominate without Amari Cooper but his numbers speak for themselves. In two seasons, he averages over 1000 yards and five touchdowns, while never crossing the 120-target mark. More volume is going to head his way and if he simply does what he has been doing, he will be a top-10 wide receiver. If he improves, he has an outside chance to be the best receiver in fantasy football.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: With Amari Cooper in Cleveland, CeeDee Lamb is finally ready to ascend into the No. 1 spot on a Cowboys offense that ranked No. 1 last year. Don't be surprised if Lamb becomes a top-3 fantasy option.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: If CeeDee Lamb doesn't rise into an elite fantasy receiver this season, he probably never will. I'm expecting big things from Lamb and believe he will take another step forward. His knowledge of the game and preparation is among the best in the league. He's too good to not ascend to greater heights.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: 6.5.2022: I will be filling in my commentary on all listed players by no later than 6.13.2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Andrews, like Travis Kelce, saw his team's WR1 from last season exit the passing game. Marquise Brown's departure leaves Andrews uncontested (as if he was strongly contested previously) to potentially lead the position in targets in 2022. Andrews has elevated into an elite producer and is firmly in the position's prime production age window as well.
Andy Hicks on Jun 17: Mark Andrews smashed through the 1000 yard season barrier with a whopping 1361 yards and finally usurped Travis Kelce as the number one fantasy tight end. The departure of Marquise Brown needs to be filled to allow Andrews to excel and the Ravens will have a stronger running game after their backfield was decimated in 2021. Andrews presents a safe floor in all leagues and despite lacking 2021 upside he should be one of the first tight ends taken everywhere.
Jeff Bell on Jun 16: Andrews broke out to lead all tight ends in fantasy scoring. The departure of Hollywood Brown leaves him as the clear top receiving threat in the Baltimore offense. The difference between his 17.7 PPG and TE3 Rob Gronkowskiâ€™s 14.3 was the same as WR5 to WR21, presenting a huge positional advantage.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Andrews was always touchdown-dependent, but last year he became Lamar Jackson's most reliable option in any down and distance. With Hollywood Brown traded away, Andrews' place among the elite is assured.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Mark Andrews should once again be a top target for Lamar Jackson, especially with Marquise Brown now on Arizona. He had 33 more PPR fantasy points than Travis Kelce last season and led the league.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: It had been five years since a tight end not named Travis Kelce took the top spot in fantasy but Andrews managed that feat in 2021. With the loss of Marquise Brown and an obvious connection with Lamar Jackson, there is an almost perfect chance that he leads the Ravens in targets again this season. It's rare for a tight end to cross 100 targets these days, and Andrews bested 150 last season. While he and Kelce are again close, my money is on Andrews to start his own streak atop the fantasy tight end rankings in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Word has it Samuel doesn't want to run the ball as much as he did in 2021. The uptick in production came in part due to injuries to the 49ers running backs. This year will likely change Samuel's upside, but the offense does a good job of maximizing Samuel's receiving prowess. Expect 1,200-1,400 yards of production with 7-10 scores in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Samuel, unhappy with the team during the offseason, is unlikely to be moved with the NFL Draft long in the rear-view mirror to return a current selection for the dynamic playmaker. Samuel was a big-play maven as a receiver, but his work as a rusher is the cherry on top for fantasy with 365 yards and eight scores on the ground alone.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: I would be surprised to see Deebo Samuel repeat his lofty dual-threat 2021 numbers this season. While it's definitely possible, there is a big change to the formula that worked so well last season - Trey Lance will be under center. Will Deebo still see the same rushing opportunities in the Lance-led offense? The uncertainty makes me a bit wary of a repeat year. Let's not forget that there are whispers of him potentially holding out. If his ADP drops as a result, he becomes a bargain, but until then, you're paying for him to repeat his numbers from last season.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: What the true story regarding Deebo Samuels offseason trade request and now contract negotiations really is remains to be seen. Based on his 2021 output, he will be one of the most valuable wide receivers in fantasy leagues. Like the evolution of the running back to become better pass catchers, wide receivers who are consistent threats running the ball just become dual threat fantasy point scoring machines.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: It was a tale of two seasons for Samuel. Two very good fantasy seasons, one where he played wide receiver, one where he was a running back. Credit to Jason Wood for pointing out that Samuel had basically the same fantasy production in both roles. He was the WR4 in the first eight games. He was the WR4 over his last eight games. He was the WR3 on the season. Put the drama aside, if Samuel plays, and he will, he is a top-5 fantasy wideout, no matter which way the 49ers decide to use him.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Is Samuel's discontent going to make him a risky bet? Keep in mind he was a fantasy stud in the first half of the season as a pure receiver, and then had identical fantasy value in the second half as a hybrid running back. Any way he's used, he remains a top option.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Jones is one of the most difficult players for me to project this year. A.J. Dillon has shown enough potential that we could see a true split. Dillon is a good receiver and a dangerous runner. At the same time, if the Packers' receiving corps struggles much like the Lions in 2021, we could Jones in a Swift-like game scenario week after week that leads to RB1 value, especially when Jones is a much better inside runner. Yet, I'm more optimistic about the receiving corps in Green Bay, especially the potential rise of Amari Rodgers. It means, I expect more of a split. Jones' value and upside makes him a quality pick but I'm not as bullish at this point.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Jones found himself in a firm committee with rising AJ Dillon in 2021. Jones relied more on the receiving game to be a vibrant fantasy option with 52-391-6 through the air. The six touchdowns mark a regression-worthy scoring rate as an area to monitor for 2022. The good news is if Dillon misses time, Jones projects as an elite RB1 play.
Andy Hicks on Jun 17: Aaron Jones had his worst season in quite some time, getting nowhere near 1000 rushing yards and with A.J. Dillon recording more carries than his teammate, Jones may only have value if his role as a receiver out of the backfield increases. The departure of Davante Adams opens this door and coming off his best season in this role, more can be expected this year. He maybe only is a bottom end RB1 these days, but skilled pass catching backs can remain a force as fantasy options giving him still some dynasty value
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Jones can do it all, but the Packers had success splitting snaps between Jones and Dillon last year. Given Jones' contract and the Packers need to replace Davante Adams, expect Jones to remain a must-start fantasy asset in 2022, but understand his ceiling is capped as a low-end RB1.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: No Davante Adams means Aaron Rodgers will target who he knows. He knows Aaron Jones well. Expect a rather high reception season from Jones in 2022, and he's not giving up the role to A.J. Dillon anytime soon. He's the better side of the two-man platoon.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Conner's 2021 season was on par with his career year in 2018 and Conner is still young enough to deliver again as the team's RB1. That said, rookie Keaontay Ingram is worth monitoring because he has starter talent and could earn the No.2 role--and a big enough role reduce some of Connor's statistical ceiling. If Ingram proves worthy of an immediate role as a contributor, Conner's ceiling is closer to an RB2 than an RB1. If Ingram isn't the RB2 and that goes to Darrel Williams, Conner's ceiling will remain in RB1 territory.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Conner pushed aside Chase Edmonds as 2021 progressed and the Arizona backfield has question marks at RB2+ with Eno Benjamin and Keaontay Ingram as the current residents. Conner is a sneaky bet to crash the elite tier of the position for a non-elite cost.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: What concerns me about Conner is his extensive injury history. He was lucky last year in a career-year. While it could still happen for him in consecutive years, I am a bit wary.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: Conner scored touchdowns last season and that propelled him to a top-5 fantasy season. It is unlikely that he repeats that number but it may not regress too far. This offense provides a ton of redzone opportunities and there is no better back to capitalize on this roster. He will be given as much work as he can handle and that will keep his floor very safe.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Conner only averaged 3.7 yards per carry and barely eclipsed 1,100 yards from scrimmage. But he scored 18 touchdowns making him a fantasy star. While he'll remain the Cardinals' No. 1 tailback, he's likely to see major touchdown regression, which puts him at risk if drafted as an RB1.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I have Allen earning 101 catches, 1,075 yards, and 6 scores--not much off his pace from his WR11 PPR production in 2021. I'm a little lower on his overall value than the consensus in non-PPR formats but that's because I'm giving more value to the ceiling of certain running backs. He's a safe starter worth your investment at or near his ADP.
Jeff Bell on Jun 26: Since 2000, 24 different receivers have topped 1,000 yards and at least 6 touchdowns in their 10th season or later. 13 of those players replicated those numbers twice. Four of those players (Jimmy Smith, Terrell Owens, Randy Moss, and Joey Galloway) did it at least three times. Age comes for everyone. The 2021 Chargers showed hints of a changing of the guard toward Mike Williams and gave him a 3 year deal worth $60 million following the season.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Allen projects as the top option for an elite quarterback in Justin Herbert. Historically, this is a strong equation for fantasy upside. WR3 and tight end are still question marks for upside in this passing game, stabilizing the floor and ceiling for Allen.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: People may be a bit hesitant to target Keenan Allen in redraft leagues because he's 30 years old now, but he's a reliable player missing only two games in the last five years. Allen has over 100 receptions in four of the last five years. The only thing keeping him from being a perennial elite fantasy receiver is his inability to score touchdowns on a consistent basis. He has never exceeded 8 touchdowns in a season.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Allen should age gracefully thanks to Justin Herbert's elite productivity.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Tom Brady proved that he's still an elite producer and that won't change during his 2022 swan song. Evans wasn't as dangerous on tape as he has been in the past, but he's still good enough to lead the Bucs in receiving. Expect one more year of excellent production thanks to his connection with Brady.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Death, taxes, and 1,000-yard seasons for Mike Evans have been the guarantees since Evans entered the NFL in 2014. Evans has logged 27 touchdowns over the past two seasons and Chris Godwin likely to miss the start of the season puts even more security in Evans seeing quality targets from Tom Brady.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: With Chris Godwin recovering from a torn ACL, Mike Evans is guaranteed another year of dominance now that Tom Brady un-retired.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Mike Evans is the definition of consistent success as a fantasy wide receiver. He is not a 90-catch weapon but he scores often and does enough on a weekly basis to be relied on. Set him and forget him, especially with Tom Brady under center.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A great back capable of elite production as a talent, especially behind the Browns' offensive line, Chubb won't see this kind of workload with Kareem Hunt still on the team. Even if the Browns trade Hunt sometime this year, a possibility considering the signing of D'Ernest Johnson for one more year and the drafting of Jerome Ford, look for Cleveland to give Johnson Hunt's workload to limit the possibility of overworking Chubb. It's good for the Browns, but puts a low-end RB1 ceiling on Chubb's game for fantasy GMs.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Deshaun Watson is poised to aid the entire Browns offense, including the already-efficient Nick Chubb on the ground. Kareem Hunt is a thorn in the passing game upside for Chubb, but with a strong depth chart, it would not be a surprise to see Hunt moved before the season. Chubb is outside the top-10 due to his lack of receiving alone, needing a Derrick Henry-like rushing stat line to break into the top-half of RB1 territory.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Nick Chubb is not getting the fantasy stats his talent deserves. He is a rare talent at the position and just needs touchdowns or more work as a receiver to be a fantasy stud. His yards per carry for running backs with over 500 career carries is third all time behind Bo Jackson and Jamaal Charles. Yes he is ahead of Jim Brown. He seems to miss a couple of games every year, but at some stage he is going to be a fantasy monster. Invest now.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Chubb averages 1,400 yards and 10 touchdowns per season, yet always seems to be cast as a consolation prize on draft day. Assuming Deshaun Watson plays a majority of the season, the Browns offense should be explosive and Chubb will have even more opportunities to score.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: Chubb is one of a few backs that is far more valuable in non-PPR formats. The Browns just do not throw him the ball and his value is dependent on rushing yards and touchdowns. The good news is that he averages over five yards per carry even with high volume. Chubb has one of the safest floors in fantasy football, but his ceiling is capped, especially in PPR.
Jeff Haseley on May 27: Nick Chubb has three consecutive top 10 seasons and he has never had less than 9 touchdowns in his four-year career. Will the Browns remain a run-first offense with Deshaun Watson under center? If not, will Chubb's rushing volume taper off?
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The tendency to overrate Tony Pollard for his athletic ability and highlight reel moments against defenses focused elsewhere sets the stage for us to underrated Elliott's ability to earn hard yards against defenses playing to stop him. Pollard is a good back who could deliver top production with high volume, but the idea he's better than Elliott is rooted in the misguided notion mentioned above. Elliott is still in his prime years, physically. He may not have top-three upside but he still has an top-15 floor. Safe and productive and closer to top-five value than most think.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Elliott is the starting back, unquestioningly so despite Tony Pollard being a quality secondary option, on one of the strong NFL offenses. That alone is reason for optimism and upside with a vice grip on goal line opportunities and his long-standing profile of quality production.
Andy Hicks on Jun 22: Ezekiel Elliott finished as the 6th-ranked fantasy back in 2021. This was considered disappointing. One of the few big-name backs to play all 17 games, Elliott played through niggling injuries and had five games with ten or fewer carries. Tony Pollard is likely to play more receiver routes. With improvement in the offensive line expected, a fully fit Elliott could, for once in his career, be viewed as undervalued. . For Dynasty leagues he could fall rapidly in value, but as I suspect he has two prime years left I would hold fast.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: You wouldn't think that 1000 yards, 10 touchdowns, and a top-7 fantasy finish would be a disappointment, but drafters are certainly treating Elliott like he was a letdown. While he is unlikely to ever receive 300 carries again, he is still a high-volume back With Amari Cooper gone, Elliott might even be more involved in the passing game. His touchdowns keep his floor safe and there is top-12 upside.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Elliott has fallen out of favor, with most of the industry ranking him outside the Top 20. Yet, he's coming off another RB1 season. While his per-touch value is on a four-year decline, the Cowboys still need to rely on him as a high volume contributor.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: The running back many think will hit the wall is becoming a value with RB1 potential as a low-end RB2 draft selection.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The two ends of the spectrum a fantasy manager can take with Alvin Kamara's off-field event is to rank him as if little or nothing will come of it or rank him based on the worst-case scenario. I'm closer to the worst-case scenario. We all know Kamara is a first or second-round option if cleared to play most, if not the entire season. Until then, I'd rather set my draft board based on how Saints' players perform without Kamara.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Kamara has an off-the-field cloud of legal issues over him, but those project as more 2023 reasons for concern than 2022. Kamara leads a Saints backfield who led the NFL in designed run plays per game last season and did not notably add to the depth chart. Mark Ingram is a solid backup but will not siphon notable work from Kamara, one of the elite receivers at the position in the NFL. Kamara's 67 targets over 13 games in 2021 marked a notable downturn without Drew Brees under center.
Andy Hicks on Jun 14: Alvin Kamara had his most disappointing fantasy season last year. His receptions dropped from the usual 80s to under 50. His rushing touchdowns were a career low, as was his yards per carry. On the bright side he had a career high in carries and shouldnt have to shoulder the burden of the offense with a much improved receiving corp. He is at the stage of his career where dynasty managers should consider their options, but he has demonstrated enough in his career to be given the benefit of the doubt for 2021
Jason Wood on Jun 1: Have we already seen Alvin Kamara's best? With the departures of Sean Payton and Drew Brees, it's time to start thinking of Kamara as a quality RB2 and not your fantasy cornerstone.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: There are still legal questions surrounding Kamara and that has to be considered when projecting him for 2022. Even if you set those aside, the Saints' quarterback situation is far from stable and they now have a lot of talent in the WR corps. Kamara is one of the most electric players in the league but volume could be an issue in 2022.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Alvin Kamara saw drop-offs in touchdowns, receptions, and rushing yards in 2021, despite seeing 53 more carries than the year prior. With Sean Payton out as the Saints head coach, there are more questions about how the team will function offensively. Have we seen the best of Kamara already? I wouldn't disagree.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Barkley has elite individual talents. Too often, he also crosses the line between aggressive and reckless decisions and this leads to a lot of boom-bust production in the box score. Even so, the ups and downs still add up to starter value at year's end when he's the focus of the offense. Barkley will be a focus of the offense but I'm not convinced he'll be the focus. Daniel Jones is in a prove-it year and I'm not betting on him proving that he's not the Giants' long-term future. I'll be monitoring the progress of the offensive line this summer and address Barkley's ranking if I see tangible hope.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Barkley is one of the highest variance plays at the position for 2022. Barkley has elite RB1 upside but has not shown it (or health) in recent seasons. A healthy Barkley is a lock top-12 producer considering his big-play ability and receiving game floor.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Everyone is counting on a Barkley bounceback. I'm not so sure we should expect a return to elite status after back-to-back disappointing seasons.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Saquon Barkley is now coming up on two years removed from his ACL injury. A bounce-back season is in the cards, but because he hasn't proven his return to form yet, people will be wary, as they should.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Williams is a fine young back on an offense that should be far more efficient with Russell Wilson at the helm. Still, Melvin Gordon is still in line to earn a split of the workload with Williams and don't be surprised if the Broncos are taking a cue from what the Browns have done with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Williams will earn more of the passing-down work which will give him a statistical edge over Gordon. Despite some wishfully thinking Williams will wow the Broncos into giving up a committee rotation, don't count on it.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: With Melvin Gordon back in Denver, Williams is set to simmer for his strong predictable upside outside of a Gordon injury. Williams might be the 1A as opposed to a full split or 1B role a year ago in the tandem. Williams is a higher RB1 any week Gordon is out.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Melvin Gordon re-signing is a bummer, for sure, because he was highly effective last year in the offense. But with a new coaching staff comes new loyalties, and Javonte should still be in line to emerge as the team's No. 1 while Gordon takes a step back to a high-floor No. 2.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Javonte Williams is a tackle-breaking force and should be the Broncos top rushing threat in 2022. He won't have full control of the reins though due to the offseason re-signing of veteran Melvin Gordon. One fact to point out, only one running back in Russell Wilson's offense has topped 40 receptions. Williams had 43 last year. that total may go down in 2022.
Ryan Weisse on May 23: I am higher than most on Williams heading into 2022. He played very well as a rookie with a perfect 50/50 split with Melvin Gordon. While Gordon resigned with the Broncos, he is also 29 years old with his best days behind him. Williams led the duo in receiving numbers in 2021 and that gap should widen this season. Gordon will vulture some touchdowns, this offense as a whole will be far better with Russell Wilson at quarterback. Williams has the skill, the draft capital, and far fresher legs than Gordon. He will be the feature back in this offense.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: With apologies to potentially Ja'Marr Chase, Hill is the most dangerous receiver in the league but he's now on a team with a quarterback who still has a lot to prove as a franchise-caliber starter. Top quarterbacks can support multiple elite options, so the addition of Hill to an offense with Jaylen Waddle gives Miami the potential to become a top passing team if Tua Tagovailoa proves he has the ability to leverage their talents. While possible this happens, the closest projection we can find for Miami's scheme will be the 49ers but without a as strong of an offensive line. If Tagovailoa can support 80 percent of what Deebo Samuel did last year, Hill will earn roughly 1,100 yards. That's what I'm projecting for him.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Will Tua Tagovailoa being a position or negative for Tyreek Hill? Hill has strong competition for targets among the wide receiver corps in Miami (Jaylen Waddle) compared to Kansas City, plus loses Patrick Mahomes. WR10-20 production for Hill is more likely than the top-10 this season.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: While Tua Tagovailoa is a good quarterback, he is not Patrick Mahomes. Not in playstyle and certainly not in arm strength. Hill will have to work much harder to be a top-10 fantasy wide receiver this season. Even with Mahomes, Hill was as likely to have a week with below ten fantasy points as he was to have a league-winning monster week. If both his floor and ceiling get lower, his current ADP carries far more risk than what we are accustomed to for the speedy wideout.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Hill getting traded to Miami is a shocker, and we need to accept that we've seen Hill's best already. The only question is how close he can come to matching his Kansas City days. Chances are he'll be less productive than his ADP implies.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Tyreek Hill had high fantasy numbers in his career thanks to high touchdown volume and above-average air yards. Can Tua Tagovailoa provide those important details to sustain Hill's elite fantasy success? I'm thinking no.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Higgins is a favorite among our staff to reach top-12 production at his position. While possible with the riches the Bengals' passing offense offers, Higgins is an excellent possession-plus receiver and that's the limit of his game. He's not a YAC producer of note and his vertical game is not based on speed. In other words, he's not nearly the big-play weapon in all facets of the game that his teammate Ja'Marr Chase. Higgins' 15.6 points per game placed him 14th among fantasy receivers last year. I'm not counting on more. He's a safe pick that probably warrants borderline WR1 draft capital if drafting with safety in mind but his ceiling isn't as high as peers at his ADP.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Higgins and JaMarr Chase can both co-exist and be top-12 fantasy options within the same dynamic Cincinnati passing game. Higgins is on a strong career arc path.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: Higgins was WR41 from Week 1 to Week 9. He turned it on late and finished WR11 after Week 10. The Bengals offense as a whole improved during that time. If the offense can sustain itself in 2022, Higgins should have a strong year, but his ADP assumes that to be the case, remember that.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Higgins built off his excellent rookie season with another stellar season, but Ja'Marr Chase's emergence puts a ceiling on Higgins.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Pittman, like Higgins, had a strong 2021 campaign and because of their youth, they are getting a push from the fantasy industry as players who will do even more in 2022. I think Higgins is closer to his ceiling based on his quarterback, role, and skillset. Pittman has a little more room for growth thanks to the efficient game of Matt Ryan. However, Ryan has never been a great red-zone quarterback and Pittman isn't a quick-hitting route runner, so I would only expect minor gains in receptions and yardage and minimal gains with touchdowns. Pittman is a solid WR2 and that has appeal. Just don't expect Julio Jones-like production.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Pittman has an ideal opportunity to build upon his promising 2021 breakout season. The Colts added Matt Ryan as a stabilizing element at quarterback, plus there were no notable additions to the passing game with pressure on Parris Campbell and Mo Alie-Cox to elevate their play as ancillary weapons.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Pittman will now catch balls from Matt Ryan instead of Carson Wentz. Even at this stage in Ryan's career, that is undoubtedly an upgrade. After a WR17 finish with a below-average Wentz, Pittman's average draft spot is near his floor. He should be able to best his 2021 numbers with Ryan at quarterback, and a top-12 fantasy wide receiver season is very possible.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Matt Ryan's arrival bodes well for Pittman's breakout. He has the talent, and now only needs to stay healthy and build a rapport with Ryan over the summer to be a fantasy star.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Pittman is coming off an impressive sophomore season that saw him jump into a top 20 finish that included 1,082 yards receiving with 6 touchdowns. He started hot beginning the 2021 season as the 8th ranked PPR wide receiver through the first 10 weeks, but he dropped off to 34th after Week 10 playing every game. Five of his six touchdowns last season came in a five-week stretch. He failed to score in 12 of the 17 games he played. Matt Ryan should help in this department with a resume that includes at least 20 touchdown passes every year since 2009, reaching the 30-touchdown plateau three times. Indianapolis is a run-first offense and aren't expected to be a receiving-dominant squad, but there is still room for fantasy success for Pittman who should command the majority of the team's downfield targets.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I love Moore's ability and individually, his career should be on the rise but the addition of Sam Darnold truncated that trajectory. While Moore's projected value gives him room to deliver mid-range WR1 value, I think the reality will be closer to the cusp of WR1/WR2 because of the volatility of his quarterback play.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Quarterback is the lone question mark situationally for Moore as Robby Anderson took a step back in 2021 and Terrace Marshall did not contribute as a rookie. Moore posting even an average touchdown rate would challenge for top-12, or higher, production this season.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: D.J. Moore is among the most overrated fantasy assets year in, year out. He doesn't score touchdowns and while TD production is volatile, the Panthers' quarterback situation makes betting on positive regression difficult.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: D.J. Moore is the Panthers top down field option and despite less than stellar quarterback play over the last three years, he has amassed 1,200 total yards in each of those seasons. On the downside he has only scored 14 times in four years which is the only reason why he is not considered an elite fantasy wide receiver. An improvement at the quarterback position and overall success of the offense would help elevate Moore into heavily coveted fantasy waters.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Brown is an elite talent capable of elite production at his position. The Eagles have an excellent offensive line that can make play-action passing more believable and give the quarterback time in the pocket on other plays. The biggest question about Browns' upside in Philly is the quarterback. Jalen Hurts has the physical tools of a franchise player. If he becomes more efficient as a decision-maker, Brown could deliver elite numbers this year. Expect a high-end WR2 value as his floor and elite WR1 value as his ceiling.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Brown's move to Philadelphia is a potential upside limitation considering the Eagles' run-centric offense and Jalen Hurts yet to take a significant step forward as a passer. Devonta Smith and Dallas Goedert offer strong competition for targets. Also, Brown has generally been overrated by the fantasy-dynasty community compared to his production for the last 12-18 months.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: The NFL's new $ 25-million-per-year alpha receiver is going to break a lot of fantasy hearts this year if his ADP doesn't normalize. The Eagles aren't going to have the passing volume to support Brown as a top-8 option. Caveat Emptor.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: I can see A.J. Brown's value staying the same or increasing, if Philadelphia increases their passing volume. If not, he will struggle to sustain the level of production he had with Tennessee.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I doubt Marcus Mariota will be better than Matt Ryan. Mariota is a worse game manager under pressure. Like Robert Griffin III from years ago, Mariota is athletic but a straight-line runner who makes bad decisions from the pocket under pressure. Atlanta's line must become significantly better for Mariota to have a chance and I don't see how that will happen this year. Drake London is a nice addition, but I'm not expecting him or any of Atlanta's receivers to take the coverage's primary focus away from Kyle Pitts. Pitts will be a fantasy starter of value but he'll need a lot more touchdowns than last year to deliver elite production and I don't think it happens unless we see production of another receiver that mimics the way Calvin Ridley was doing it in 2019-2020.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Pitts' rookie year stat line was historic for a rookie tight end. The lone blemish is a single touchdown on his log, where any reasonable touchdown rate would have fueled a top-half TE1 season out of Pitts. Expect Pitts to crash the TE4/5 threshold this season with a few more touchdowns and being a centerpiece passing game element for the likely-to-trail-plenty Falcons.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Pitts had a remarkable rookie season that exceeded my expectations. Breaking 1,000 yards at the tight end position as a rookie portends greatness, and as long as Arthur Smith can find competency at quarterback, the sky is the limit.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: Pitts' rookie year feels simultaneously like a major accomplishment and disappointment. The 110 targets were exactly what we hoped for when he was drafted and it's hard to complain about 68 receptions and over 1000 yards. However, one touchdown scored did not exactly light up the lives of fantasy managers. He finished as the TE6 but four more touchdowns would have put him over 200 fantasy points as the TE4. There has to be a concern about a step back at the quarterback position but volume should not be an issue in 2022.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Kyle Pitts impressed as a rookie last season but he has not hit his peak. There is more to come for Pitts and there isn't much competition for targets in Atlanta.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If the Steelers continue its dink-and-dunk approach, Johnson could earn another high-volume year as a low-end WR1 in fantasy. Still, that is dependent on the decision-making of Mitchell Trubisky, which has never been the quarterback's strength or rookie QB Kenny Pickett. In other words, the odds are lower that Johnson will have the optimal rapport with either quarterback. Expect fantasy starter value, but more in line with a WR2 or WR3.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: The debates about Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool seem laughable after last season. Johnson's fantasy value hinges on whether Mitch Trubisky or Kenny Pickett can manage the offense.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Khalil Herbert was good enough to earn significant playing time in 2022 if the Bears decide to use a larger committee split. That said, Montgomery has proven doubters wrong about his supposed lack of burst and ability to become a strong NFL starter and the mentioning of Herbert is a convenient reason to continue to downgrade Montgomery's potential in this space. Although the Bears' offensive line was weak last year, Montgomery delivered RB2 value in just 13 games with an inept coach and rookie quarterback. Expect a strong RB2 fantasy season with legitimate RB1 upside. He's a high-floor value.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Montgomery is one of the underrated three-down running backs for 2022. The key question is if Justin Fields will supply enough in the passing game to maintain a lighter box for Montgomery. Khalil Herbert is a solid RB2 but no threat to Montgomery's workload even after a promising rookie season.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: Montgomery was the RB21 last season in just 13 games played. From a points per game basis, he was a top-15 running back. The Bears offense is not going to be great in 2022, but Montgomery's ADP eliminates some of his risk. He is not the most exciting prospect but his floor is safe.
Jason Wood on Jun 1: The Bears' offense doesn't appear well-positioned for success in 2022, so avoiding David Montgomery may be the smart play. BUt I've always valued his skill set more than most, and will happily target him as an RB2.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Cooks remains in the physical prime of his career. He has proven durable, only missing three games during the past seven seasons. He also earned 90 catches from a combination of a rookie quarterback and an uninspiring journeyman. That rookie, Davis Mills, displayed a good rapport with Cooks that should only get better--and that should lead to another solid WR2 year in fantasy.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Brandin Cooks is undervalued every season. Who else can put up top-25 fantasy numbers year in, year out despite different teams, quarterbacks, and offensive playbooks?
Ryan Weisse on May 25: There are a lot of similarities between Brandin Cooks and Mike Evans, Both are just about a lock for 1000 yards every season and both are usually undervalued and underdrafted. Cooks won't score the touchdowns that Evans will, but he is also far cheaper in drafts. He is going to hit 1000 yards and likely to score five TDs. He finished in the Top 20 last year and should improve in year 2 with Davis Mills at quarterback.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Cooks has six 1000-yard seasons in eight years in the league and he is coming off a career best 90 catches on 133 targets. Those numbers may take a slight dip in 2022 but there is also a scenario where that could increase, especially if second-year quarterback, Davis Mills continues to develop and grow as a capable young quarterback in the league. Cooks is a reliable, consistent fantasy wide receiver who has missed only three games since 2015. He has five top 20 finishes and six top 25 seasons. He is expected to put up similar numbers at worst in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Gibson will be the lead back in a three-headed committee and Ron Rivera says that game scripts will dictate the touches. Carson Wentz was statistically better in 2021 than he was in recent years but still nowhere good enough for the Colts to retain him. Wentz is the weak link on this Commanders' offense, which means opponents will prefer to see Washington throw the ball. Gibson is a viable option but I don't see the top-15 upside at his position without significant injuries to the depth chart.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Gibson's two deficiencies have been fumbling and durability. Washington added Day 2 Brian Robinson in the draft, who had zero career fumbles at Alabama and is a power runner. Gibson was already squeezed by J.D. McKissic on the receiving end and now Robinson adds a layer of downside for goal line and early-down work.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Gibson was a top-10 running back last season and didn't do anything particularly unrepeatable. The concern around him stems from the return of J.D. McKissic and the drafting of Brian Robinson. McKissic has been a thorn in Gibson's side since 2020, siphoning 163 targets that could have gone to Gibson. Then, the Commanders drafted Robinson in the 3rd Round of the 2022 draft. The coaches have already said Gibson's workload will vary weekly but it did in 2021 as well. If he makes up for the carries lost to Robinson with more work in the passing game, he still has top-10 upside.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Gibson has handled a much larger workload than I thought possible in two seasons, but Washington appears set to reduce his touches in order to keep him healthy and optimal for the stretch run.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Raiders have excellent pieces for its passing game and Derek Carr is coming off a career year. Jacobs played through minor injuries and wasn't efficient as a rusher, but managed 1,220 total yards, which was in line with his career average. Moreover, the Raiders finally leveraged Jacobs' receiving skills. I'm banking on the genie not returning to the bottle and that means another year of rushing in the range of 900-1,100 yards, 8-12 scores, and 300-400 receiving yards. Damien Harris had 1,061 yards and 15 scores in McDaniels' committee offense last year. Don't overreact to a committee approach mentioned in the media until there's evidence that Zamir White is legitimately ready for a significant role.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Plenty among the fantasy community will wring their hands with the Raiders not picking up Jacobs' fifth-year option for 2023 and drafting Zamir White. However, White was a Day 3 selection and the franchise tag is marginally more than the fifth-year option for Jacobs next offseason, plus provides the Raiders flexibility. Jacobs will lead a Raiders offense now boosted by Davante Adams. Jacobs is one of the back in the NFL with 10+ touchdowns and 50+ receptions within his sights.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: There is a lot of uncertainty regarding how Josh McDaniels will operate the Raiders offense in 2022. Will it be similar to his time in New England that was run-heavy with timely passing, or will the addition of Davante Adams boost the passing game? How will Jacobs be used? Will he be the primary weapon out of the backfield or will Kenyan Drake and perhaps rookie Zamir White see increased action? Jacobs quietly topped 50 receptions last year and figures to see more of the same duties in 2022, but will he be a consistent force or will we see the Patriots offense in Vegas with multiple contributors. Jacobs is a decent RB2 option especially if he falls outside of the top 20 running backs selected in drafts.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Josh Jacobs is following the Cadillac Williams career trajectory to a tee. He's been run into the ground by Jon Gruden and it'll likely mean a stiff falloff to irrelevance. Josh McDaniels has always fielded top-tier rushing offenses, but it's almost always come from a three or four-person committee. If you're expecting Jacobs to be a workhorse, you're setting up for disappointment.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I blame Matt Harmon's love for Robinson spiking the expectations of an industry of analysts. Robinson has never had a quarterback like Matthew Stafford, so if Stafford's elbow isn't a problem, Robinson's value will increase on my board. However, I'm not convinced he'll ever return to his one glory year in Jacksonville. Cooper Kupp remains the best receiver on the team and if Odell Beckham returns, Robinson could wind up the third option on enough plays that his production upside remains capped.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Robinson is one of the bounce-back candidates for 2022. Matthew Stafford is easily Robinson's best quarterback of his career, Robert Woods is gone to Tennessee, and Van Jefferson has yet to show more than sporadic flashes in an ancillary receiver role. Robinson, even with an elite Cooper Kupp producing on the same depth chart, has top-12 upside.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 19: Allen Robinson has four 150+ target seasons, three 1,000-yard seasons, and three 80-reception seasons and he's played with Blake Bortles, Mitchell Trubisky, Nick Foles, Justin Fields, and Andy Dalton. If we're counting college, it includes Matt McGloin and Christian Hackenberg. So yeah - now he will have a fringe-Hall-of-Famer in Matthew Stafford, not to mention the best receiver in the league drawing the defense's attention. Sign me up for some Robinson this season!
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: After leaving the Chicago Bears, Robinson could not have landed in a much better spot. He leaves one of the most dysfunctional offenses in 2021 to play for one of the best from last season. With a ceiling in the top-12 and floor not much past WR24 in his new role with Matt Stafford, Robinson has league-winning potential at his current ADP.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hall has RB1 upside as a talent and was my top back on the board in rookie drafts. His surroundings aren't as favorable as he skills. If the OL and QB can take another step forward, Hall has RB2 upside this year, but he'll need to earn the majority of the touches.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hall was the first running back off the board in the NFL Draft as expected. The Jets offer a tempered outlook for Hall initially with Michael Carter a nice RB2 and offensive upside questions with Zach Wilson posting a poor first season. Hall is more of an RB2/3 projection than RB1 in his first season.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: The Jets have a lot of questions, and Hall's success hinges on Wilson making a massive improvement under center. But if the Jets do show offensive growth, Hall will likely be the new engine.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: Breece Hall has the skill set to be one of the next best fantasy running backs in the league. He can be a three-down back from gun but it may take him a few weeks to get acclimated and for the Jets to see what they have in him. The future is bright for Hall, who is only 21 years old.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Breece Hall has the talent to be an immediate three-down back in the NFL. While the Jets weren't seen has the perfect landing spot for that to happen, it is still very possible. Michael Carter had a few good games last year but was far from impressive. He is far better suited to be a solid backup than a starter or even a B option. The Jets are an improving team and if they choose to give the keys to Hall, he has a top-20 floor and an incredibly high ceiling.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Waller should have even greater production efficiency with Davante Adams in the fold, whether Adams' presence increases overall production is up for debate. Still, it's safe to presume that Waller will be a top-five option at his position.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Waller missed games in 2021 for the first time in his elite production string, plus posted a meager two touchdowns. This offseason has Davante Adams added to the Raiders passing game, plus Hunter Renfrow coming off a breakout season. Waller has elite talent, but reaching an elite fantasy ceiling will be tougher than 2020 and 2021 with Waller's competition for targets at an all-time high.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: The addition of Davante Adams has called into question Waller's role as a dominant fantasy tight end. While Adams is sure to take targets away, there should be enough to keep Waller around 100 targets for the season. With Adams commanding more attention, Waller may be able to score more touchdowns. We've seen very prolific touchdown scoring by tight ends in a Josh McDaniels offense. He is still on of the best fantasy options at a bad position and anything lowering his ADP is better for the fantasy manager that lands him.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Waller was a disappointment last year and now target vacuum Davante Adams comes to town. Waller still slots as the No. 2 option in a high-volume passing attack, but the days of thinking Waller had Kelce upside are behind us. He's a tier below, but still one of the better options on draft day, particularly in TE-premium scoring systems.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Although a different type of Dobbins was arguably every bit the talent of Jonathan Taylor from their draft class. If he returns to health after his ACL rehab and the Ravens offensive line stays healthy, Dobbins has what it takes to deliver elite fantasy production. Because his injury happened late last preseason, he should be healthy enough that there's lower risk for compensatory injuries that often happen with players rehabbing this kind of tear. We'll likely know by August if he needs to be downgraded but I'm expecting a career year for Dobbins and one he can build on for 2023.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The health and recovery status of J.K. Dobbins and/or Gus Edwards is in the crosshairs with Baltimore's signing of Mike Davis this offseason. Dobbins is a strong talent, but Baltimore already had tempered receiving upside for the backfield and now Dobbins might be a slow start to the season or in a committee.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Dobbins' season-ending injury last year provides us with a small window to draft Dobbins at value. As training camp gets underway and the world is reminded of his explosiveness, his ADP will move up to where it should be, as a fringe RB1, high-end RB2.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: J.K. Dobbins is almost one year away from his ACL injury. Will he be fully recovered or at least recovered enough to warrant reliable fantasy production? My best guess says no.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I love Waddle's game. I'm taking a cautious approach with Tua Tagovailoa and this offense as a whole right now. Expect some changes over the summer as I look deeper into the offense.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Waddle is off to a strong career track after a productive Year 1. However, the limitations of Tua Tagovailoa plus the addition of Tyreek Hill siphon unrealized upside from Waddle in 2022. Waddle has more downside than many of the receivers drafted and ranked around him.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Cooper's value is volatile this year because projections for Deshaun Watson's availability are all over the place. If Watson plays 8-9 games, Cooper will have low-range WR2 value. If Watson plays the entire year, Cooper will be on the cusp of WR1 value. If Watson misses the entire year, Cooper is more likely a mid-range WR3, best. Mark Cooper with an asterisk on your board and hope for a discount until there's definitive news with Watson's availability in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Cooper exits a fertile Cowboys offense, but enters a Browns offense where a lid-lifting addition of Deshaun Watson offers upside for Cooper at, or above, his Dallas time. Cooper has a vice grip on the WR1 role with WR2 questions in Dovonan Peoples-Jones, Anthony Schwartz, and David Bell the most likely options.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Amari Cooper will be the new alpha receiver in Cleveland, but his redraft value hinges on how much of the season Deshaun Watson plays.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Etienne is having a strong OTA session thanks to his speed and receiving ability. OTA's don't show you much as an inside runner and this is always where Etienne has some inconsistencies that could limit his upside. James Robinson's rehab is going well thus far and when healthy, he's the superior runner between the tackles. The Jaguars couldn't muster much on the ground beyond Robinson's work last year, so I'm going to wait before I get on board with the Etienne buzz, if at all.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Etienne is coming off an injury before his 2021 rookie season even got started, but so is James Robinson. Etienne has Round 1 pedigree and the Urban Meyer stink is gone from the hoping-to-rebound Jaguars. Etienne has the profile of a breakout candidate especially if James Robinson has a diminished role or is slow on his recovery.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Etienne is one of the better values on draft boards currently, but he'll shoot up rankings with a healthy preseason. He's going to be the centerpiece of Doug Pederson's offense, yet people are treating him like an unproven committee back. Enjoy that arbitrage window for the short time it stays open.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: I am confident that Travis Etienne is going to live up to the hype that surrounded him last season. I'm betting he is healthy and James Robinson is not, and that he is going to see around 250 touches, with a decent portion coming in the passing game. He was a great passing outlet for Trevor Lawrence in college, and I think that continues to their first professional season together. The biggest question will be: Will he score enough touchdowns?
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: McLaurin has been a reliable option with or without quality quarterback play. Carson Wentz should prove no exception, even if I have concerns that his game won't align well with McLaurin's skill set. Expect low-end WR2 production and you won't overspend.
Jeff Bell on Jun 26: The idea of Terry McLaurin is better than the reality of Terry McLaurin. Through three seasons he has one WR2 seasonal finish, WR20 in 2020. He is currently in a holdout situation and even if he reports he enters a Carson Wentz-led offense that just spent the 16th pick on Jahan Dotson.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: McLaurin wants a new contract and he has the talent to live up to a monster deal. While Carson Wentz isn't the long-term answer, he's a better quarterback than anyone McLaurin caught passes from in 2021.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kittle has played a full season in the NFL once in five years and he's missed 33 percent of his potential starts during the past two seasons. He won't be physically ready to go until training camp and the 49ers just signed free agent Tyler Kroft as a minor hedge. There will also be a change in quarterbacks at some point this year. A great football player with elite fantasy upside but enough factors to weigh down my trust in him as a safe pick as early as his ADP requires.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Missed games have been commonplace for Kittle the past three seasons, 13 total, and a high touchdown season has eluded the 49ers' tight end (career-high six in 2021). Kittle has regularly been the bridesmaid instead of the bride when discussing the TE1/2 overall, instead falling into the next subset.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: Kittle is still arguably the best tight end in football, just not the best in fantasy. He is a better blocker than most and with Trey Lance at quarterback, that skill will be invaluable. We just don't get fantasy points for blocking. Last season, he still finished with 94 targets, despite playing in just 14 games. So the volume potential is there, but a good portion of that was with Jimmy Garoppolo at quarterback. It's a small sample but Kittle was at about 6 targets per game when Lance had significant playing time.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Kittle hasn't played a full season for three years, and most likely will be playing with a new quarterback in Trey Lance. Yet, he's coming off a career-high 6 touchdown season and looked like himself for most of 2021. At a position starved for impact contributors, Kittle is still worth the price.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Williams had a career year in 2021 and there's no reason to expect a significant regression. The Chargers offense was at full health last year and with Justin Herbert entering his peak athletic years, expect Williams to remain one of the top two targets on this explosive offense.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'm not expecting Tyler Allgeier to be a factor and Damien Williams essentially fits the Mike Davis role. It leaves Patterson the opportunity to repeat what he did for Atlanta this year and if I were the opposing defensive coordinator, I'd let Marcus Mariota check the ball to Patterson all day. Considering the receiving corps, look for opponents to focus on Kyle Pitts, and get pressure on Mariota behind a weak OL unit. This will lead to game scripts where Patterson is leading the dink-and-dunk parade as a receiver.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Atlanta added Damien Williams and Tyler Allgeier to the running back depth chart this offseason but subtracted Mike Davis. Patterson is their most dynamic running back option and plays all over the offense, scoring multiple ways.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Patterson is more of a receiver, but the Falcons did next to nothing to bolster the running back roster, leaving the veteran with another viable fantasy season ahead.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Brett Farve in Minnesota, Peyton Manning in Denver, and Tom Brady in Tampa Bay. When are we going to learn that elite quarterbacks elevate the production potential of excellent offensive talent? The question is likely less about Sutton and more about Wilson being elite. I'm not questioning it. This year, or next, Wilson will be an elite producer once the offense acclimates to its new passer. Sutton is that primary receiver likely to earn the marquee production that Wilson will generate for the Broncos. I'm expecting a strong run of production from Sutton beginning this year.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Sutton has career-best upside in 2022 with the addition of Russell Wilson by Denver. Sutton has yet to crash the top-20 in aPPG for his career. Overall volume for the passing attach and if Sutton can be the clear WR1 over Jerry Jeudy, are the critical questions for Sutton's ceiling.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Is Marquise Brown the big-time receiver worthy of the buzz he earned at Oklahoma or is he a system receiver with deep speed who lacks the complete route skills and physicality to earn production associated with a passing game's primary weapon? If you're a Brown apologist, you blame the Ravens' offense for limiting his potential. There's truth in this statement when considering the range of routes Lamar Jackson targets. If you're critical of Brown, you look at OU's system, Brown's size, and the likelihood of Brown emerging as the next DeSean Jackson without injuries, and his production ceiling appears narrower. It's clear the Cardinals are all-in on Brown, picking up his fifth-year option so they can be poised to renegotiate in 2024. I'll likely move Brown up my board as the summer progresses but his ceiling may remain just outside WR1 range.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Marquise Brown leaves a run-heavy, vanilla passing offense in Baltimore to an Arizona offense that is wide open and pass-happy. With D. Hopkins suspended and C. Kirk in Jacksonville, Brown should immediately become Kyler Murray's top target.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Metcalf will not see the caliber of targets that Russell Wilson delivered his way and this will lead to tougher catch scenarios. He'll also be playing with quarterbacks who won't be as sophisticated with reading the field. Tyler Lockett is the Seahawk of choice because he can get open in more ways than Metcalf.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The potential stink of the Seattle quarterback room without Russell Wilson is pulling down the fantasy stock of Metcalf. Seattle did not add to their passing game outside Noah Fant via trade, making Metcalf a potential value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Rams have two worthwhile running backs on the roster this year and Akers is that top dog. As long as Matthew Stafford's elbow doesn't become a serious issue, Akers is poised to have a career year. In this offense, that likely translates to strong RB2 production.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Akers was a feel-good story to even play in 2021 after a summer Achilles injury. Akers did not look good, however, and Darrell Henderson is another quality option on the depth chart. The Rams have not thrown to running backs enough to see two-way production of note. At least Akers has double-digit touchdown upside in a best case.
Jason Wood on Jun 2: Cam Akers is forcing us to redefine what a torn Achilles means for future performance. His ADP suggests most think he'll be back to a full-time workhorse, and maybe he will. But I'm still reluctant to pay for pre-Achilles value.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 1: I have more pause than excitement for Akers despite his return from an Achilles injury late last season with decent results. The list of running backs who have done anything worthwhile after an Achilles tear is incredibly small, if not absent completely.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Monitor Godwin's progress from a late-season ACL tear. A player with WR1-WR2 production for the second-half of the season is valuable enough to draft earlier than where I rank Godwin. However, compensatory injuries can wreck that plan and they happen a lot to skill players coming off these injuries. I'm preaching caution, for now.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Godwin is recovering from a torn ACL, but once healthy will step right back into Tom Brady's good graces.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Dillon is one of those talents capable of top-five production if given a feature back's workload, but this won't happen with Aaron Jones still in the picture. Expect a similar split between Dillon and Jones as last year with perhaps a slightly greater share for Dillon than before.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: At worst, Dillon is a flex play with RB1 upside on a weekly basis. Any game Aaron Jones misses Dillon vaults to a must-start.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: If Aaron Jones misses significant time, A.J. Dillon becomes a fantasy stud. In the meantime, he'll be a viable RB3/flex option even in suboptimal game scripts.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Mitchell gets the first crack at maintaining the role he had in the 49ers' backfield last year, but Kyle Shanahan is a lot like his father when it comes to personnel management. This is not a backfield I trust when it comes to pinpointing the production leader this early in the year.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Mitchell's knee surgery in the offseason plus the drafting of another Day 2 running back in Tyrion Davis-Price makes one of the most fantasy frustrating running back depth charts in the running again for 2022. Mitchell is the penciled-in starter for Week 1, but that pencil is light with the eraser handy.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Excitement for Trey Sermon gave way to Elijah Mitchell after a stellar preseason, and he ended up the most productive part of Kyle Shanahan's reliable committee. Expect more of the same, if he can stay healthy.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Chiefs passing offense will be radically different without Tyreek Hill. If Hill's tape was the football equivalent of the Exorcist for opposing defenses, Mecole Hardman and Marquez Vadles-Scantling are Weekend at Bernies' II and III. With opposing defenses playing more drop-eight/Cover2, expect Smith-Schuster to be one of the top two target getters on the squad and most efficient producers on the team.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 19: How quickly the consensus forgets how good Smith-Schuster was just a few years ago. He definitely has had his down moments as well, but if he is healthy he'll be a key piece to one of the best offenses in the AFC. There is some risk involved because he has missed 12 games last year with a shoulder injury. However, the reward outweighs the risk. He can be the top WR on the Chiefs this season for a WR30 price tag.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Bears offensive line doesn't appear much better than it was last year, which is a bad sign. Still, Much of what Matt Nagy did last year as a play caller exacerbated bad line play. Expect a far more sensible scheme that gives Justin Fields more time this year. Also expect Fields to improve, which means Mooney should also earn more quality targets.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Thielen is older and he hasn't played a full 16-game season in three years. Yet, he's earned as many touchdowns (24) during the past two years as he did during his first six in the league. With the Vikings spreading the field, expect Thielen to have a 100-target campaign. I'm not banking on the peak years of 140-150 targets but 100-110 is realistic for the changes Minnesota has in store.
Amon-Ra St. Brown
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Perhaps St. Brown is more Robert Woods than Sterling Shepard as a talent. However, I don't expect Brown to deliver Woods' like numbers -- at least not this year. The addition of D.J. Chark to a stable of options that includes T.J. Hockenson and contributor Justin Reynolds likely means that St. Brown will switch between slot and flanker as the No.2 or No.3 priority on more routes than he is the No.1 priority in the progression. While this will still lead to enough opportunities for 800-1,000 yards of production, he's not taking a giant production leap from is rookie year.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: I don't understand the hate St. Brown is receiving this offseason. He is going to play big-slot role with a quarterback that loves the big slot. He's not Cooper Kupp but that is the role he fills for Jared Goff. Yes, there will be more competition for targets, but he averaged 5 targets per game with Swift and Hockenson playing last year. In those same games, he also managed multiple instances of 7-8 targets. It is far from impossible that he hits 110-120 targets again in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kirk delivered borderline WR2/WR3 production last year with Kyler Murray. Trevor Lawrence may be a notch or two below Murray in perceived quality, but I expect Lawrence to make up a lot of ground this year and that should lead to Kirk delivering similar production from his 2021 season as Jaguar.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: Kirk somewhat broke out in his final season with the Cardinals and banked a massive payday from Jacksonville. He turned 103 targets last year into a 77/982/5 stat line, good enough to finish as the WR26 in fantasy. While the move to Jacksonville is an upgrade in the pecking order, it is a downgrade at quarterback. He may end up with more targets but less efficiency. That will likely lead to a repeat of his 2021.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A skilled underneath option against zone coverage, Schultz will likely be one of the top 3-4 targets in the passing game, especially with Amari Cooper in Cleveland.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: Schultz broke out in 2021 and there is no reason to think that changes this season. He was a top-5 tight end last year on 104 targets, and with Amari Cooper now playing in Cleveland, there is a solid chance Schultz's targets see an uptick. A high-volume tight end with high touchdown upside is a dream come true in fantasy right now.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Schultz lacks the athleticism of his TE1 peers, but no one can argue with his role or productivity. Dallas franchised him because he's become a vital piece of the league's No. 1 scoring offense.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hockenson only played 12 games last year but if he maintained his 11.9 fpts per game average in PPR formats for a full 17, he would have been the No.4 option at the position and the No.3 option if he simply played 16 games. With D.J. Chark on the perimeter and Amon Ra-St. Brown a year wiser, look for Hockenson to earn better opportunities in the Lions offense and continue producing at a high enough rate per game to join the top-five options at the position in 2022.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Hockenson only played 12 games last year, which is the second time in three seasons he's missed a big chunk of the season. Until he proves more durable, it's hard to invest a high pick in him despite transcendent talent and All-Pro upside.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: Hockenson was averaging seven targets per game last year before his injury. That volume translated to 12.1 fantasy points per game, which would make him a top-5 fantasy option. Every number he put up last year is repeatable, even with new competition for targets. Hockenson is one of the best options at fantasy tight end, he just needs to stay healthy.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If Thomas' rehab is successful, he should lead the Saints in receiving and deliver top-15 production at his position. Until we know more about his rehab, the length of time that he has missed generates concern.
Jeff Bell on Jun 26: A wholly lost season to injury is the easy way out on Thomas, but the more significant concern is the window when he did play in 2020. His 13.2 PPR points per game from weeks 9 to 14 ranked him WR30, his current rank. With a new quarterback, a new play-caller, and the 11th overall pick on Chris Olave, it is fair to question if the player who captivated fantasy in 2019 is gone forever. And that is assuming he plays.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I could see the Browns trading Hunt to a team that needs a starter and that team wants the first shot to re-sign him after the season. This would increase Hunt's value immediately. Presently, Hunt has solid RB2 value with elite RB1 upside based on his current split with Nick Chubb behind a top OL and the potential for Hunt to be the lead back due to a Chubb injury. Many underrate Hunt's high ceiling, role, and supporting talent because they are overvaluing upside in the early rounds from lesser talents without the supporting talent and/or role.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hunt is a running back to watch with no guaranteed money and a quality depth chart (D'Ernest Johnson, Jerome Ford) behind him. Hunt's elite upside if Nick Chubb misses time is in some doubt with Johnson's strong showing as a spot starter last year. Hunt being moved by Week 1 would not be a surprise.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Hunt has only played 8 games in two of the last three seasons, which masks how effective he can be in the Browns system when healthy.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Jerry Jeudy is not an Antonio Brown type of receiver in playing style. My pre-draft comparison was an aspiring Reggie Wayne. With Russell Wilson joining the Broncos, the opportunity for Jeudy to elevate his production is there. At the same time, Courtland Sutton offers more to Wilson when comparing the two receivers and Sutton will likely be the leading producer. Also, keep an eye on Tim Patrick, who could cut enough into Jeudy's target share that trying to match a 1:1 transfer of Seattle's receivers with Wilson to Denver's will be futile.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If Ezekiel Elliott remains healthy, Pollard offers more upside in PPR than Non-PPR. Pollard is a good young running back, but there's a slew of fantasy analysts kidding themselves about Elliott not being as good of a running back as he once was. His offensive line isn't as good as it once was but he's still an excellent player who handles difficult scenarios better than Austin. They see Austin's highlight touches or data without appropriate context for the position and it distorts their valuation of the players. Pollard has top-15 upside if Elliott gets hurt but until then, I'd rather risk undervaluing him. I don't think he's going to be D'Andre Swift to Elliott's Jamaal Williams.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Pollard is in the small subset of must-start running backs if the starter is out. Ezekiel Elliott has provided zero such games for Pollard to-date despite playing dinged up on numerous occasions. Pollard has flex appeal at times even with a healthy Elliott.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Tony Pollard didn't show much growth last year despite many calling for a more equal footing with Ezekiel Elliott. If Elliott is healthy, Pollard is overvalued.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Bateman has a blend of skills and potential along the lines of Michael Thomas and Keenan Allen with big-play speed and open-field prowess. He's a good receiver in the middle of the field, which fits the M.O. of the Ravens' passing game. However, the Ravens' passing game, even during the peak production of its 2019 campaign doesn't thrive on perimeter routes that can expand a primary receiver's production. Unless you think Bateman forces Mark Andrews into the No.2 role in the passing game, expecting more than 1,000 yards from Bateman is too much.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Renfrow is the most intriguing receiver of the summer because of the skills he has displayed as a pro and the arrival of Josh McDaniel, whose offense made Wes Welker and Julian Edelman fantasy studs. Derek Carr is on the heels of a career year and Davante Adams provides a massive upgrade to the passing game. If Carr's production continues to climb with the addition of talent and scheme, Adams could be an approximation of Moss; Waller and Foster Moreau can be an approximation of Gronkowski and Hernandez, and Renfrow could be the approximation of Welker. And of all these approximations, Renfrow has the skills where we might one day say that Welker was an approximation of Renfrow. Think of Renfrow as a fantasy WR3 with lottery-level WR1 upside in PPR leagues.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Edwards-Helaire hasn't offered the returns that the Chiefs envisioned and the addition of Ronald Jones signals that Kansas City wants a runner who can break tackles in the box that Edwards-Helaire can't. Look for a clearer delineation of roles with Edwards-Helaire as a receiver and two-minute back and Jones as the early-down runner. Keep an eye on Isaih Pacheco as a young option with potential to be become a lead back of the future.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Edwards-Helaire had troubling separating from Darrel Williams for feature back usage at times last season. Williams is gone, but Ronald Jones a notable signing and Isaih Pacecho on offers strong athleticism from Day 3 in this year's draft. Edwards-Helaire is one of the shakier starters in the NFL outside of a strong opening stretch of the season.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: 10 games played. 646 total yards. 6 touchdowns. Those numbers aren't going to justify his draft ADP, and now Ronald Jones is on the roster ready to compete for snaps.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A.J. Brown's presence will soften coverage for DeVonta Smith. Expect the second-year option to earn more production because he won't be forced to defeat primary corners up the vertical boundary. Smith's upside won't be reason to take him, but his floor should be high enough to consider him a solid contributor in a starting lineup.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Harris had an excellent year and will remain the safest option in the Patriots' rotation considering half of the projected depth chart could be rookies. If there's a threat to that lead role or significant playing time, Rhamondre Stevenson is capable. I expect Stevenson or a veteran like James White to make inroads with more playing time that limits Harris to high-end RB2 value this year.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The Patriots are back to playing the hits with their running back collecting. Pierre Strong and Kevin Harris were both notable Day 3 selections with their quality profiles, added to Rhamondre Stevenson, James White, and Damien Harris. It is tough to trust the most expensive Patriots running back and that is Damien Harris for 2022.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Harris scored 15 touchdowns last season and still finished as just the 14th best fantasy running back. If that number were to regress too far, Harris' current ADP could quickly go from moderate value to an all-out bust. The team drafted Pierre Strong Jr in the 4th Round of the 2022 draft, and James White is set to return. That means Harris is unlikely to see an uptick in the passing game and could even lose more carries to Rhamondre Stevenson as he grows into this offense.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Harris emerged as the best back in New England, but the Patriots aren't going to give anyone an every week, workhorse role as long as Bill Belichick is running the show.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Eagles have a good OL and while I like the talents of Boston Scott and Kenneth Brooks, Sanders will earn the first crack at featured touches. Sanders' ability to stay healthy is a big reason I have him projected lower. His inconsistent decision-making and ball security are also factors behind my desire to stay away from him as a fantasy option. I'd rather take shots on Scott and Brooks late if I want to piece of the Eagles' backfield.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Sanders has yet to see a foundation back workload through three seasons and his receiving work saw a pronounced cut in 2021 with the addition of Kenny Gainwell to the depth chart. Sanders is the starter on paper, but one of the lower upside NFL starting options.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Sanders is far and away the most talented tailback on the Eagles roster, but his durability clearly soured him in the coaches' eyes. If anyone is going to become a reliable fantasy star, it's Sanders. But the baseline expectation should be as a middling committee contributor.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The production we saw from Moore when Joe Flacco started last year is indicative of what he can do if Zach Wilson improves. I'm buying, because he should earn a lot of opportunities from the slot that Wilson won't miss this year.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Singletary will likely remain the early-down back in Buffalo but expect him to lose targets to James Cook and potentially split more time as a runner with Cook and Duke Johnson.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Singletary is coming off his best NFL season and more touchdowns (8) than his previous two seasons combined (5). Singletary projects as the lead back for Buffalo to start the season, but taking James Cook in Round 2 is an ominous sign for any job security of strong touches for Singletary.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: When the Bills give Singletary a starter's workload, he thrives. But the coaches seem reluctant to use him that way and are constantly searching for a complementary back.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I like London's skills, but I'm bearish on the Falcons' quarterback depth chart. Marcus Mariota struggles as a decision-maker when he has to extend plays from the pocket. Desmond Ridder is a hard pass when it comes to knowing when a target is too dangerous to attempt. London's potential is higher than Michael Pittman's as a talent but the Atlanta offense makes his fantasy value too volatile for my taste -- at least at this point of the summer.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: With the loss of Calvin Ridley for 2022, the Falcons were just about the best spot for a rookie wide receiver to land in this draft. London should immediately be the WR1 on a team that should be throwing a lot and he is really only competing with Kyle Pitts for targets. The table is set for well over 100 targets and I will not be surprised if London is the rookie WR1 by season's end.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Goedert had a nice points per game average last year and while it's possible that the addition of A.J. Brown will be a net positive for Goedert's target efficiency, it could also be a net negative for his target volume. I'm expecting the efficiency gain to be smaller than the volume decline and it makes Goedert a borderline TE1/TE2 rather than a clear-cut TE1 in many formats. August developments will factor into my assessment of Goedert's upside.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Goedert is good, but not great. He does most things well, but with A.J. Brown added to the mix along with 2021 Heisman Trophy winner Devonta Smith progressing, Goedert's ceiling is capped. The Eagles won't have the passing volume to support multiple receiving options on a weekly basis.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Lockett is the most versatile route runner on the Seahawks and that leads the easiest targets for quarterbacks. Look for Lockett to be the receiving leader on a team with quarterback play dependent on easier looks compared to Russell Wilson.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'll likely bump Davis up my board to the cusp of WR3-WR4 value, at best. Even so, I'd keep expectations low. Most likely, Davis will be the 3rd or 4th option in the passing offense behind Stephon Diggs, Dawson Knox, and at best, splitting volume with James Cook. There's way too much excitement about Davis due to his playoff performance where his big plays came as the third read against defenses that defended Knox and Diggs first, hoping to reach Josh Allen with pressure before Allen could find Davis. This won't happen weekly in 2022. I might happen monthly. The box score watchers don't factor coverage and game plan context into their analysis enough.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Aiyuk is the third option behind target hogs George Kittle and Deebo Samuel. And if Kittle stays healthy, Aiyuk's production may be less than what he earned last year. The one factor that could change Aiyuk's production potential beyond injuries to teammates is the possibility that Trey Lance favors different play calls and/or decision patterns than Jimmy Garoppolo and it leads to more targets for Aiyuk. Until we see this happen, Aiyuk is a fantasy contributor but more of a match-up starter in the most common formats with 2-3 receivers in starting lineups.
Jeff Bell on Jun 16: Brandon Aiyuk was WR16 after week 8, with a full season pace of 73-1,128-6. Many will point to Deebo Samuel shifting to a run game role opening up this opportunity, but Aiyuk opened the season in coach Kyle Shanahan's doghouse and his targets went to players like Trent Sherfield and Mo Sanu. The only thing holding him back is an ambiguous quarterback and target situation but the talent is evident.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Breece Hall gets more love, but there's a good chance that the Jets' offense isn't much better than the Seahawks despite a lot of optimism with early-round picks who haven't been around long enough to pan out. Seattle has a strong receiving corps and enough OL talent to support Walker, who is an excellent talent in his own right. Like New York, Seattle's quarterback is the question mark and ultimately the driver of the offense. Walker should offer enough production for the public to understand that he's a future fantasy starter of note despite potentially splitting time with Rashaad Penny in an offense lacking top quarterback play. Walker has big-play quickness and he's a patient runner.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Walker secured No.41 overall pedigree out of the draft and a Seattle depth chart ripe with uncertainty. Chris Carson has a murky outlook with his neck and Rashaad Penny has sparsely strung together a healthy stretch in his NFL career. Walker's range of outcomes ventures from strong injury-away option to clear-cut starter with a lack of health around him.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Walker landed on a team committed to a power running game, but right now Seattle has no answer at quarterback and several veteran tailbacks vying for snaps.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Walker was pretty firmly the rookie RB2 behind Breece Hall entering the draft but may have ended up in a better landing spot. The Seahawks offense wants to run the ball a lot and the running backs ahead of Walker, Rashaad Penny and Chris Carson, both have injury concerns. With Carson's future still up in the air, Walker will be the 1B to Penny from Day 1 and may claim the primary job, through talent or injury, by season's end.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The idea that Javonte Williams will be the featured back is magical thinking at this point. Denver wants to split the load similar to Cleveland. Expect Williams to earn the majority of the split, but not enough that Gordon isn't a fantasy factor as a strong RB3 or flex.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Gordon returning to Denver limits his weekly appeal beyond a flex play but also puts him in play for strong upside any week Javonte Williams is out.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: I'm as excited as anyone for Javonte Williams in 2022, but we should not be burying Melvin Gordon. The new coaching staff is known for 2-back systems, and Gordon's role is very defined. The new scheme and quarterback should significantly improve this offense, and Gordon will be the primary redzone back. He was a top-20 fantasy back last year in a 50/50 split. There is no way he does not perform his current ADP.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Melvin Gordon tested free agency and then re-signed with Denver. Expect another 1a/1b season alongside Javonte Williams.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Claypool burst onto the fantasy scene thanks to defenses rolling zones to account for Pittsburgh's other receivers and Claypool's coverage playing soft on the rookie. Once opponents realized they had to play physical against Claypool or roll the focus of zone coverage to Claypool, first, Claypool's value imploded. There's a chance that Ben Roethlisberger's dwindling arm strength was a significant factor in Claypool's decline, but velocity was a bigger issue than distance and Claypool's vertical targets required distance more than velocity. Expect this to be Claypool's last year in Pittsburgh and maintain a healthy skepticism with a rebound in production that hasn't happened for the past two years.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Woods is an excellent football player coming off a mid-season ACL tear after 30. I'm not expecting Woods to be in peak form this year. There's a potential that Woods won't return to form considering that he's closer to the end of his career based on age. Of course, Jerry Rice proved an exception and it's possible that a technician like Woods can do the same. I'm expecting WR3-WR4 value from Woods as long as there are no setbacks, but his situation bears monitoring before investing.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Lazard gets a lot of love because of past production, his size, and Aaron Rodgers' praise of him as a worker. That said, Lazard is a high-floor, low-ceiling talent whose game has to benefit from zone routes or Packers' alignments that create assignment confusion and gets Lazard wide-open. The young receivers who do more against single coverage without scheming have more upside in this offense--even if their age, experience, or injury history create more volatility.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 19: The Packers' wide receiver room has a lot of questions. They skipped over another first-round wide receiver in the draft and wound up selecting Christian Watson in the early second round. Watson has the tools to make an impact but it may take some time to develop rapport with Aaron Rodgers. Lazard already has established a growing rapport and he maintains the safest option for Rodgers downfield. We've seen Rodgers turn good receivers into great ones. Jordy Nelson and James Jones come to mind. What if Lazard is the next in line of a long list of productive wide receivers under Rodger's tutelage? If anyone is going to fulfill that role this year, Lazard has the resume.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Big, strong, and fast for his size, Burks has work to do against press and zone coverage. He lacks a clear plan in both situations and even his catch-point technique has occasional lapses that can be the difference between good and great. Combined with his struggles with asthma and weight, I want to see Burks prove his value in re-draft leagues before I jump on board.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: Burks finds himself in a position to be the Titans WR1 in his rookie year. He was extremely productive in college and, with the team trading AJ Brown, there is a huge need in Tennessee. Early training camp reports have been rough for Burks, but as long as he's healthy by the preseason, he has every chance to lead this team in targets in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Ertz will be the lead tight end and one of the top three passing game options while DeAndre Hopkins serves as six-game suspension. That said, Trey McBride should not be overlooked as a factor who won't overtake Ertz this year, but he could shave a little off the top of Ertz's production upside. Ertz is a low-end TE1 on the cusp of TE2 territory, depending on league size.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Ertz looked like his old self after a few weeks in Arizona, and the Cardinals decided to keep him around for a few more seasons. Arizona spreads the ball around, but with Christian Kirk gone and Deandre Hopkins suspended for half the season, Ertz could have a strong start to the season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hopkins is a WR2 value when his suspension ends. The ageists will fear that he has fallen off the side of the square earth, but the steroids weren't used to make him faster as much as facilitating faster healing.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Wilson is a dynamic prospect, but has some work to do with his hand positions at the catch point as well as defeating press coverage against patient and physical press defenders. He should have quality weeks as a rookie, but don't expect him to put it all together this year. At best, project rookie numbers approximating Devonta Smith's rookie production.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Wilson was my rookie WR1 before the draft and landing with the Jets does not change that for me. While he has tougher competition for targets than Treylon Burks or Drake London, he has the talent to establish himself as the alpha over Elijah Moore.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Edmonds will likely be part of a 1-2 punch with Raheem Mostert and then Sony Michel if Mostert gets hurt again. That said, the Dolphins under Mike McDaniel may not have as much work for the No.2 of that 1-2 punch if we go by his tendencies with the 49ers. When the No.1 has been healthy, the No.1 is the dominant production option on the team. Therefore, I'm lower on Edmonds' role than some project it.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Edmonds was in line for the 1A role in Miami until Sony Michel was added to the depth chart, now one of the more ambiguous pecking orders in the NFL with Edmonds, Michel, and Raheem Mostert populating the three top spots.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel wants to run the ball as effectively in Miami as they have in San Francisco, and Chase Edmonds was brought aboard in free agency to be the 1a of a multi-back committee.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Cook will have a definite role in the Bills' offense. Expect Devin Singletary to be the early-down runner to begin the year or a split between Singletary and either Duke Johnson or Zack Moss. Cook will see a lot of his field time as a detached receiver this year. Still, don't be surprised if he earns an increasing amount of work between the tackles as the season progresses. He's a modern era Eric Metcalf for the Bills, who had three years out of six as a top 20 running back and spent another seven years as a slot receiver with one top-12 season at that position.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Cook secured Round 2 pedigree, but a murky depth chart in Buffalo with Devin Singletary coming off his best season to-date and Round 3 Zack Moss also still looming. Cook is a better bet later in the season rather than early.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: All preseason rumblings are that Cook will be heavily involved in this offense immediately. I'm a notorious hater of Buffalo running backs with Josh Allen. Allen is the best redzone back on the team and it caps all other's value. However, if the rumors are true that Allen is going to run less, then there could be a double-digit touchdown season out there for Cook, even splitting time with Devin Singletary.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'll progressively add more to Gallup's projections as there's good news about his recovery.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Toney's value is lower than his ability because Daniel Jones and the Giants OL and reports concerning immaturity off the field that could lead to bigger problems. All I ever hear mentioned is one report from his sophomore year and Brian Daboll's regime has been complimentary of Toney's work habits and personality. On the field, Toney can play inside and outside and he's easily the best receiver on the team and the only one who has a shot at defeating top cornerbacks in any situation. If he continues to move efficiently so he's not slipping and risking injury -- a problem he had at Florida that initially carried over to his rookie camp -- Toney has WR1 upside if the Giants' pieces all come together. At the same time, there's enough mentioned above that keep his value in the WR3-WR range.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kenny Pickett will eventually earn the starting job and Pickett does a good job targeting the tight end position. Freiermuth's rookie year will have fantasy analysts worried that his production was too TD-dependent. Catching 60 of 79 targets should be the counterargument. Expect another year similar to 2021 for the young tight end, even with the instability at quarterback.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Based on talent and career progression, Freiermuth deserves to rank higher. But until we have clarity on whether Mitch Trubisky or Kenny Pickett are up to the challenge of guiding a high-efficiency passing offense, we have to treat Freiermuth more as a high-ceiling TE2.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Penny is an athletic terror of a back, but injuries and lack of experience with zone schemes have held him back. Last year's excellent run of production indicates that Penny still has the potential to become a strong NFL starter and fantasy value. Penny's tenure in Seattle likely ends this year and Ken Walker is slated as the future, if not a big part of the immediate present. Expect a committee situation similar to Denver's duo of backs but without as good of an offensive line.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Penny showed his elite upside with (finally) a healthy stretch to close the 2021 fantasy season, carrying teams to titles. Penny's return to Seattle is clouded by the drafting of Kenneth Walker and the possibility of Chris Carson returning from a career-threatening neck injury. The perfect storm for Penny is an impact player, but he has sparsely been healthy for long in the NFL as a high-variance play.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: After three and a half forgettable seasons, Penny finally got a shot at the starting role and rattled off four 100-yard games in the final five, along with six touchdowns. But with Russell Wilson gone and rookie Kenneth Walker added to the RB room, we may have seen the best Penny has to offer.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Stevenson is a skilled runner and receiver who is also a strong short-yardage option in the red zone. If Stevenson pleases the coaching staff with low-error football, he could command a greater split with Damien Harris -- even with the potential return of James White to the Patriots' committee. New England wants to run the ball and Stevenson offers the potential for consistent production in multiple ways: an injury to Harris, strong play that forces a greater share of touches, and a consistent red zone role. He's a valuable mid-round option in leagues with rosters with at least 17-20 spots.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Stevenson showed well as a 2021 rookie, but the Patriots splashed the depth chart with Pierre Strong and Kevin Harris, both notable profiles now with Day 3 pedigree. Stevenson's clarity as an injury-away option to Damien Harris is no longer there.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Stevenson only played 12 games but amassed 729 yards and five touchdowns. Like most Patriots backs, he looks capable of fantasy stardom in those rare game scripts when he gets a full workload. But will he earn more than a smattering of snaps?
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Olave is the most technically proficient receiver in this draft class while also possessing first-round athletic ability. If Michael Thomas doesn't return to form, Olave could become the top option for the Saints this year. If Thomas' rehab is successful, Olave has the skills to be a compelling WR3 in fantasy if Jameis Winston plays to his potential. There's no volatility with Olave's talent, but plenty of it with his role in New Orleans this year. Still, the talent and floor as the Saints' No.3 WR are compelling enough to draft and hope for the upside scenario.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 1: While I love Olave as a player and think he his dynasty value is high, year one may not show his full potential. In New Orleans, he will be competing for targets with Michael Thomas, Alvin Kamara, and the newly signed Jarvis Landry. On top of target share, there are still major concerns at quarterback, with Jameis Winston not fully healthy and uninspiring backups. I like his touchdown upside, especially if Winston is at quarterback, so he may be a better non-PPR play as a rookie.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Boyd's upside is dependent on injuries to the two receivers ahead of him in the Bengals' passing offense, but he has a high enough floor to deliver no worse than WR3-WR4 value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Gesicki should earn more efficient targets this year, but I'm skeptical he earns the same volume as previous years. If Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle stay healthy and Gesicki earns strong volume, it's because Tua Tagovailoa is playing above expectation. Gesicki earns higher marks from most because they think of the 49ers offense and presume Gesicki earns George Kittle's role but Kittle is a far more versatile option with greater athletic upside as a ball carrier. The likely answer is that Gesicki maintains a low-end TE1 upside. If I increase Tagovailo's production, Gesicki will be a beneficiary.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Gesicki set career marks for targets, receptions, and yards last season but the touchdown luck (2) offset his growth. Assuming positive touchdown regression, Gesicki could sneak into the top-10 conversation. However, adding Tyreek Hill to the mix makes Gesicki a low-priority target in most game scripts.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I was never that impressed with Gage's game in Atlanta, a product of desperation with Atlanta's offense than a legitimate match-up talent. I'm banking on Tampa Bay finding this out by midseason and rolling with other options.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Carter has strong RB2 upside if Breece Hall falters and perhaps RB3 value if Hall simply isn't ready to assume enough passing down duties for the offense. The current projection is that Carter and Hall will begin as a 1-2 punch. I have Carter projected for roughly 1,000 yards of offense with Hall at about 950 total yards. This is not far off from the two year average of running back production for the Jets' RB stable. Considering the Jets' offensive line, one of these players is going to have to be adjusted downward a little big and I'm banking it it being Carter. Still, Carter will likely be the one to get the most opportunities early in the season so if you want a sell-high candidate backed into your drafts, Carter might be one.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Carter pulled a Tre Mason as the Jets drafted Breece Hall as the RB1 off the board. Carter also saw Tevin Coleman and Ty Johnson play a decent amount last year amidst Carter's moments of prominence. Carter ultimately projects as an injury-away option in 2022 with Breece Hall being the starter in short order, even if Carter sees the most touches in Week 1.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Carter had 964 yards and 4 touchdowns as a rookie on an otherwise ineffective Jets offense. Unfortunately, the Jets added Breece Hall which relegates Carter to the minority portion of a committee, at best.
Jeff Bell on Jun 20: Knox finished as TE9 on a PPR per game basis. Heâ€™s a third-round pick, plays a position we know takes some developmental time, and improved across the board (targets nearly doubled from 44 to 71, catch percentage rose 54% to 69%). He plays in one of the highest-scoring offenses in the league, his 88% of available snaps were the second most of any skill player, and he plays video games regularly with the best quarterback in fantasy football. And people will look for any reason to fade. 184 targets are leaving this offense with Cole Beasley and Emmanuel Sanders, more than enough for popular breakout player Gabe Davis to build upon his 63. If he maintains his catch rate and yards per target while adding just two additional targets per game, heâ€™s a near-lock to deliver a top 5 TE season despite potential touchdown regression.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Knox's fantasy value relies on touchdowns, and there are some obvious concerns. The Bills added a few wide receivers this offseason and even brought in O.J. Howard at tight end. Perhaps more importantly, they drafted a running back in the 2nd Round of the NFL Draft, and James Cook presents a threat to Knox's touchdown count. If Knox ends up with fewer targets and touchdowns, you'll want no part of him and his TE24 floor in fantasy football.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Dawson Knox is a complementary piece of the Bills puzzle, not someone who presents matchup nightmares for opposing defensive coordinators. But as long as the Bills continue to sling the ball around at a breakneck pace, Knox will have low-end starter value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Golladay's best production came in scenarios where his offensive personnel could minimize his need to be a technician and maximize his raw athletic gifts. Without the likes of Marvin Jones and Golden Tate to protect him and paired with a quarterback who wasn't as good as Matthew Stafford, Golladay struggled as the primary outside receiver in New York. I don't think it will change much this year. Kadarius Toney is a better fit for the Stefon Diggs role and Gollady strikes me more as a Gabriel Davis type -- before the overkill of buzz hit Davis. Golladay has WR2 upside if the Giants offense plays great, but I'm not banking on this happening. I won't be drafting Golladay anywhere near his ADP.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Henderson has fantasy RB3 upside if Matthew Stafford's elbow issue doesn't get progressively worse. I'll be moving him up my board if Stafford's health is a non-issue.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The Rams has an upside-capping lack of usage for running backs in the passing game, but Henderson is a sneaky bet considering Cam Akers did not look good with his early return from an Achilles injury last summer. Henderson has limited competition from lower on the depth chart and Akers is a massive question mark entering 2022 health-wise.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Cam Akers' Achilles injury opened the door for Darrell Henderson until Sony Michel was acquired. Henderson had a career year with 864 yards and 8 touchdowns, but Akers is healthy and ready to resume the top role.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Travis Etienne is the future if not the immediate present, but I still like the potential for Robinson to deliver starter production for a span of 10-14 games this year. He's a superior inside runner and the Jaguars need that from a back.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Jacksonville, like Baltimore, has health as the major watch list item for the respective backfields. Robinson and Travis Etienne are both returning from season-ending injury. If both are healthy, expect Robinson to lose out to the Round 1 pedigree of Etienne. Robinson has top-12 upside on a likely-better-than-2021 Jacksonville offense if Etienne is still on the mend.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: James Robinson provided a story for the ages, but last year's injury, a new coaching staff, and the return of Travis Etienne as the No. 1 option likely mean Robinson's days as a fantasy star came and went in the blink of an eye.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: You'll typically find my ranking of Robinson lower than most for one simple reason: I don't think he bounces back well from his Achilles Tear. Last season, we saw Cam Akers return after 4-5 months out, and gift us with 2.4 YPC when he came back on just 75 carries. Marlon Mack missed the entire 2020 season, then only played six games in 2021 with just 3.6 YPC on 28 carries. If Robinson does play, I think he misses at least six games, and won't be able to handle the workload or provide the efficiency that endeared him to us the last two years.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: At USC, Jones was a big-play speedster who ran with an elusive style. In Tampa Bay, Jones was a big-play rusher with a tackle-breaking style. Expect the rugged version of Jones in Kansas City as a two-down option who cedes time to Clyde Edwards-Helaire on passing downs. That said, Jones' error-prone ways makes him more volatile of a weekly contributor. He has more fantasy upside than Edwards-Helaire due to his work between the tackles, but more downside due to his lack of passing-game value and past issues with tentative decision-making. If he's slow to adjust to the Chiefs' scheme he could fall out of favor because Andy Reid isn't afraid to go with less proven options on the depth chart.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: In a best case, Jones challenges Clyde Edwards-Helaire and eventually wins the lead role in Kansas City. Neither has shown particular acumen in pass protection with Patrick Mahomes and Tom Brady in recent seasons, hence seeing Leonard Fournette and Darrel Williams dominate in those situations.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Ronald Jones has a limited skill set, but the Chiefs prioritized him in the offseason. There's no reason he can't put up better numbers than Damien Williams did as a starter, particularly if Edwards-Helaire struggles early.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Give me a name of a receiver on the Patriots' roster that's taking his job...I'm waiting...nope, not the rookie.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: There are a lot of questions about the Patriots' offense after Josh McDaniels' departure, but expect Henry to be a top target for Mac Jones. When you see the number of trust-throws in contested scenarios that Jones made with Henry, it's safe to view Henry as one of the safest offensive options for the team and among fantasy tight ends.
Andy Hicks on Jun 20: Much was expected from the two tight ends acquired in free agency by the New England Patriots. Jonnu Smith had the bigger wallet and produced disappointing numbers. Hunter Henry ended up leading the league in touchdowns, tied with three others. There is room for improvement in Mac Jones and the Patriot offense, with more receptions and yardage highly likely. Henry isnâ€™t going to threaten the leading tight ends, but should outperform his draft slot.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Hunter Henry's early career injuries cast a shadow over him, and provide a compelling discount on draft day. The Patriots threw huge money at Henry and Jonnu Smith last offseason, but 2021 proved it was Henry who deserved the paycheck. In an offense without bonafide playmakers, Henry remains a viable TE1 in most league formats.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A quality backup who can deliver starter production in all facets of the position. He'll offer no less than weekly fantasy RB2 value if Dalvin Cook misses time.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Mattison has been one of the most clarified and highest upside injury-away running backs in the NFL since his drafting in 2019. That continues in 2022 behind Dalvin Cook. Any game Cook misses, Mattison is an auto-start player.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Mattison set career-highs in touches (166), yards (719), and touchdowns (4) last year but his efficiency plummeted and no longer looked like a fantasy star in those few games each season when Dalvin Cook sits.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: He's at that scary age of 29 for the ageists, but he's joining an offense that should open the field significantly for him to return to his high-volume potential of 115-130 targets. And, there are multiple scenarios where this outcome could happen: 1. Turning Jameis Winston loose and let him throw caution to the wind. 2. Michael Thomas returning to form and opening zones for Landry on easy looks. 3. Alvin Kamara's potential suspension forcing Landry to be a part of replacing the short passing game targets Kamara commanded.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'll likely be bumping Hines a bit up my rankings based on the news that Matt Ryan's work with Hines is better in OTAs than what the Colts ever saw with Carson Wentz. Still, I don't expect Hines to have a strong year statistically unless Jonathan Taylor gets hurt. Look for this offense and Hines to be more efficient but that also means less work for the passing down back.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hines is the J.D. McKissic of the Colts depth chart - a PPR hindrance to others on the depth chart more than a standalone fantasy starter.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Hines doesn't get the volume to factor into every-week fantasy lineups, but there will be a handful of games when he breaks a big play, particularly as a receiver.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Hines' strength is as a receiving back and change of pace rusher who keeps his game-day carries to a minimum. Hines will still play a role on the Colts offense, but in the event that Taylor misses time, he will share duties with newly signed veteran Phillip Lindsay. Hines has at least 40 receptions in each of his three seasons in the league.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Commanders' passing down back is a quality player with fantasy potential when he has a quarterback who can get him the ball. The Colts have indirectly criticized Wentz's inability to feed Nyheim Hines effectively last year based on their praise of Matt Ryan doing a much better job of this task in OTAs. I'd keep expectations modest for McKissic until we see how the depth chart shakes out in training camp and what we learn about Wentz's acclimation.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: McKissic shifted from Buffalo back to Washington in free agency. McKissic is more of a PPR thorn in the side of Antonio Gibson (and Brian Robinson) than a standalone strong PPR play. McKissic's role largely stays the same whether Gibson is healthy or Robinson is the early-down option.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: McKissic agreed to leave Washington to join the Bills but reconsidered and re-signed with the Commanders instead. Pencil him in for a heavy receiving role and an insignificant rushing output.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: This is a prove it year for Smith and the Vikings want to accommodate Smith's skills with a spread offense. Even so, it will take injuries for Smith to be anything more than the third option in this passing game. He might not even be a strong third option if Dalvin Cook and K.J. Osborn earn a bump in targets. The volatility of offensive role and injury history makes Smith an option with TE1 upside but a much lower floor.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Injuries are a massive concern, but Smith has flashed in limited playing time. The Vikings remain committed to him based on their lack of alternative moves in free agency or the draft. If Smith is healthy and productive in the preseason, he's worth targeting as a breakout. But he has to stay on the practice field, or he's ignorable.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: D'Andre Swift may look like a cheat code by certain numbers based on cooperative game scripts last year but I expect those game scripts to change enough that Swift isn't an elite fantasy back in 2022. That means we'll see more of Williams between the tackles.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Williams is one of the underrated primary backup running backs, capable of carrying the load if needed. Williams is unstartable as long as D'Andre Swift is healthy.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Five seasons into his career, and Jamaal Williams is consistently counted on for approximately 700 yards and 3-to-4 touchdowns. That's not enough to move the fantasy needle.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Spiller is the first legitimate starter candidate at the position the Chargers have selected in the middle routes or higher of the NFL Draft since Melvin Gordon. Spiller's lack of elite long speed and some occasional decision-making gaffes are the only real areas requiring improvement. Expect Spiller to not only earn a contributing role, but an opportunity to build on that role. If he impresses enough, Austin Ekeler may not be a priority to sign to a new deal. While remote as a chance at this time, Spiller's skills give this scenario potential to become more realistic.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Spiller slipped to Day 3 of the draft but landed behind Austin Ekeler with an open opportunity to win the RB2 job to start his rookie season. Spiller has quality injury-away upside if he wins the role.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: Spiller was my third favorite running back coming into the draft but dropping to Day 3 dropped him to 4th in my rankings. I still like the landing spot. There should be plenty of work behind Austin Ekeler and Spiller is better than any back on the current roster.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kenneth Gainwell is the passing-down option of choice, but Boston Scott is the better overall running back. Gainwell is not a good contact runner and his explosion was more pedestrian than many thought. If Miles Sanders falters, Scott likely earns a bigger fantasy workload than Gainwell. Also seriously consider UDFA Kennedy Brooks as a potential option.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Gainwell is more of a thorn in the PPR side of Miles Sanders (and Boston Scott) than a standalone fantasy viable running back.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Seattle tight ends averaged 102.5 targets, 74.5 catches, 728.5 yards and 5.5 touchdowns during the past two years. That's the entire tight end room, not one player. Fant is certainly capable of increasing these totals with the work he can command, but he requires a lot more scheming from the offense to generate that production. In contrast, the best tight ends do more with one-on-one matchups than Fant has shown capable despite his excellent athletic gifts. I'm probably too low on Fant, but even if I am, he shouldn't be mistaken as a TE1 this year if the quarterback depth chart remains as it is.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Noah Fant's fates lie entirely in what Seattle does at the quarterback position. If it's Geno Smith, Drew Lock, or Baker Mayfield, Fant should be avoided in all but the deepest leagues.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Cole Kmet failed to score a touchdown last year. If he scored 5-6 with the receiving production earned in 2021, Kmet would have been a TE1. This tells you that if Justin Fields and the coaching staff improve their quality of work in the red zone, Kmet has TE1 value. Chicago tight ends scored 10 times in 2020 with similar production in other receiving categories when comparing to 2021. Kmet is worth consideration as a second tight end in drafts who could wind up your TE1 if Fields and the Bears gain efficiency as decision makers.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: My concerns for Kmet stem from a new offensive scheme. Chicago's new head coach comes from a Green Bay staff that hasn't targeted the tight end position more than 100 times in the last two seasons. That's the entire group; no single player has crossed even 60 targets. Last season, Kmet could not crack the Top 20 or score even a single touchdown, despite 93 targets. Mid-round tight ends almost always disappoint, and Kmet has a floor outside the Top 20.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: The Bears' inept offense hid impressive underlying growth for Kmet last season. If the new coaching staff can unlock Fields' passing prowess, Kmet could be this year's emergent star.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If Moore's production improves this year, he could limit Marquise Brown's upside because of his big-play speed and YAC skills. Kliff Kingsbury has Moore replacing Christian Kirk's role in the offense, which could give him WR2 value. While DeAndre Hopkins serves a six-game suspension, Moore should get an enhanced workload. However, the volatility of Moore's potential is great enough that he could yet again become a minimal factor in the offense if Brown, Zach Ertz, and Hopkins finish the year as the top-three target getters. There's also A.J. Green, who isn't in his prime by any stretch, but held off Moore with his contributions in 2021. There's a strong chance I'll be elevating Moore above Green in the pecking order within the next month or two. Kingsbury is bullish on Moore's route running.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 19: With DeAndre Hopkins suspended for six games, someone will be forced to play the role of the possession receiver and it probably won't be Marquise Brown, that's just not his strength. While I don't love this role for Moore, the volume will most certainly come with it and he has the skill set to be a dual-threat option as a rusher/receiver. His role with the team should increase dramatically compared to last season. I am not sure how he will handle it just yet, but again, it's the volume I covet. Moore has the potential to be an every-week fantasy starter and he's being selected long after fantasy starters are drafted. He's the definition of a value pick.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Chark's 1,008-yard, 8-score campaign in 2019 seems all but forgotten in fantasy circles. However Chark averaged 63 catches, 857 yards and 6.5 scores in 2019-2020 -- before he had to cope with Urban Meyer's amateur hour and an injury-riddled 2021 campaign. Chark as strong WR2 upside in fantasy but it may take injuries to the Lions receiving corps for him to realize it during this one-year deal. He's likely the big-play, No.3 option in the passing attack behind T.J. Hockenson and Amon-Ra St. Brown. Look for Chark and D'Andre Swift to have similar target volumes in this pass game as the 3rd and fourth options. It makes Chark a decent flex or bye-week value at this point.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: I've always been lower on Chark than most, but the Lions need a deep outside threat and that is his best possible role. He is big guy that handles contested catches well. More importantly, he is a very different player from their other receivers. It will be harder to take him off the field, which hopefully leads to plenty of scoring opportunities.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I was never a big fan of Hardman's game. Speed is his calling card and when Tyreek Hill was in the fold, there was always the potential of opponents focusing too much on Hill for Hardman's benefit. However, Hardman never developed his game to the point that he could become a skilled match-up player and there's only so much scheming that an offense can do to make a player a viable producer at a high level. At best, I expect Hardman to remain the producer he has always been in Kansas City. At worst, he's passed by.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Higbee is more than capable, but he has to stay healthy. Although he has only missed five games during the past three years, he has played with an assortment of nagging injuries that have limited his potential in the receiving game. His touchdown totals have increased during the past two season despite the injuries. Even so. he's used as the third or fourth option, at best in the passing game and that's unlikely to change in 2022. Higbee is a good bye-week option with upside if the profile of the offense has to change due to injury.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Higbee had another solid season, and his role as a complementary piece should be intact for another few seasons. But he's far enough along in his career to know the chances of a TE1-breakout campaign are unlikely.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Another year, another season for underrating Marvin Jones. This year, the reason is the disastrous performance of the Jaguars offense under Urban Myer and the addition of Christian Kirk. I'll continue betting on quality route running, contested-catch skill, and deep speed. It's not like I'm ranking him to be a WR1 or WR2, but the idea that he won't be a WR3-WR4 is an overreaction.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: Jones did lead this team in all receiving categories last season but still finished outside of the Top 30 for fantasy wide receivers. He's a year older and unlikely to operate as the team's WR1 this season. While he is the best outside receiver on the team, the targets may be spread too thin in 2022 and he is unlikely to score enough touchdowns to even repeat his ranking from last season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Parker's availability is the biggest question with his profile. A minor question is whether he still leans so much on his athletic traits that he's not enough of a student of the game to function well in the Patriots' offense. We've seen this with better receivers joining New England at the end of their careers. Parker has WR2 upside but a much lower floor.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: When healthy, Marlon Mack is competent when there's a clear lane for him to set up and hit. He's also a decent receiver and has big-play speed. Even so, Dameon Pierce has superior contact balance, ball-tracking as a receiver, and enough agility to challenge for the lead role by year's end. Expect Pierce to deliver as a solid flex all year with Mack as the lead back or to take over mid-season and deliver fantasy RB2 totals during that stretch of play.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Pierce slipped to Day 3 in the draft and Houston has Marlon Mack and Rex Burkhead as sturdy veterans on the depth chart. Pierce was a relative non-producer in college and assuming he will outright win the starting job is a stretch.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Pierce was solid runner in college but never a high volume guy. That is why I caution against a stance that he will become a full-time starter right away in Houston. I doubt the Texans move away from the committee approach from last year and that limits his upside. As long as his ADP stays low, he's worth the risk, but if he creeps up, don't overpay.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Dameon Pierce at 5'10, 218 pounds fits the role of a typical NFL running back. He has the tools to perform well despite not taking flight at Florida due to him occupying a part-time role with the team. He has good vision and the size to move forward after contact. He is a physical back with adequate receiving skills, but he is not going to accelerate out of trouble or be an elusive type of back who can easily evade tacklers. He will battle Rex Burkhead and Marlon Mack for carries but it may take a few weeks before his role increases. Any running back with draft capital potential is one to watch for fantasy purposes and Pierce fits that category well as we head into the 2022 season.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: Going into the draft, we all wanted the Chiefs to spend early draft capital on a wide receiver and they selected Moore in the 2nd Round. Moore showed blazing speed at the Combine and is a solid route runner. It may take some time and development, but he could easily be the WR1 in Kansas City, even by the end of 2022.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 7: Dotson feels like a forgotten man in rookie drafts. He is not getting the same kind of respect that most 1st-Round wide receivers get in fantasy football. Washington will throw the ball plenty and Dotson should slide right into the WR2 role opposite Terry McLaurin. The team still has Curtis Samuel and Logan Thomas, but both are recovering from 2021 injuries and may not be ready for Week 1. Dotson's role is immediate and can be effective for fantasy managers.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Counting on Mostert to stay healthy is a risk He has only two seasons out of seven where he has playing in 11 or more games and he has missed 24 of the past 33 starts during the past 2 years. Still, he's the best option in Miami when healthy and he's on schedule to be ready no later than September.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Mostert was a non-factor in 2021 after a Week 1 injury and is on the wrong side of the age curve. The good news is an unsettled Miami depth chart gives Mostert a puncher's chance at clarified starts in 2022.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Raheem Mostert is already 30 years old and is three seasons removed from his one relevant campaign. With Chase Edmonds and Sony Michel added to the roster, as well, Mostert is probably more like an on-field coach-in-waiting than a regular contributor.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A well-built athlete with speed, excellent hands, and tracking ability of the ball, White has gaps with decision-making that could be exacerbated in the tight-gap Duo run scheme that is a prevalent part of the Buccaneers' run game. White presents a boom-bust value as a rookie based on Leonard Fournette's conditioning and White's own developmental issues. He's worth consideration late in drafts but he's prone to being overvalued as a mid-round option based on his metrics and not his film.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: White secured Day 2 pedigree and has a Matt Forte-light profile as a prospect. Ke'Shawn Vaughn has shown little through two seasons and the RB2 job in Tampa Bay is wide open behind Leonard Fournette. The trust of Tom Brady with pass protection assignments will be key for White and Vaughn.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: Williams certainly has the talent and the speed to make it in the NFL. For his rookie year the questions will be about his health and where do his targets come from? Detroit ran a lot of three wide receiver sets last year, but not many with four. With almost 90 targets to the 4th wide receiver or worse, most of those targets should funnel to the top-3 guys, if they all stay healthy. There is enough for everyone to see a fair share, but efficiency and scoring will be key. Jared Goff needs to improve to help these wide receivers become fantasy relevant.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Okwuegbunam has TE1 upside and could emerge as such this year because of his red-zone prowess and Russell Wilson's skill with seam routes. Greg Dulcich's potential as a receiver may take away some of that production ceiling but if there's an option at this position I'm likely to bump up the board, it's Okwuegbunam because of his speed, underneath routes, and contested catch skills.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: When trying to predict a new offensive scheme, I focus on two things: the coach and the quarterback. Hackett's scheme in Green Bay has produced a top-10 tight end, but that was purely based on touchdowns, which is a hard stat to predict. Russell Wilson hasn't given us a fantasy-relevant tight end in five seasons. He has instead been leaning on his top wide receivers. This Broncos team has a very talented wide receiving corps. So, there is a good chance that there will not be enough volume to make Okwuegbunam anything more than a weekly streaming option.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Okwuegbunam is the latest in a long line of middling tight ends the fantasy analyst community tries to talk themselves into loving.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Davis hasn't played a full season in fours and while his production efficiency has grown during those five years, his spotty availability may open the door for another receiver to step into Davis' spot and shut out the veteran by year's end. More likely, you'll get WR3-WR4 value from Davis for much of the year before his body fails him again.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 9: After they traded away Davante Adams, wide receiver was at the top of every Green Bay fan's wishlist. It took until the 2nd Round, but the team drafted Christian Watson. Watson is tall and fast, he will remind most of Marquez Valdes-Scantling. No one was going to step right in and replace Adams, but Watson is an immediate fit with Valdes-Scantling now in Kansas City. He will have ups and downs, as will any rookie wide receiver, but he could still lead this team in targets as a rookie.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Drake has proven he can be an electric, albeit inconsistent, RB2 in fantasy when afforded the touches. The Raiders will likely implement a committee approach and that means Drake and Zamir White will be battling it out to earn the No.2 role behind Josh Jacobs. Drake has the advantage of experience and pass catching. White is a smarter runner at this stage of his career than Drake was as a rookie and may acclimate quickly and earn a chance to usurp Drake in camp.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Drake lost clarity as an injury-away back in 2021 when Peyton Barber had moments of clarity. The Raiders added Zamir White to the depth chart, further clouding Drake's chances for streaming starts in 2022.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Drake's role in Las Vegas paled in comparison to his usage in Arizona, and with a new coaching staff aboard that's not likely to change given Drake's age and injury history.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Burkhead showed well late in 2021 but has typically had the underrated backup role more than starter or true injury-away status in his career. Marlon Mack and Dameon Pierce added to the depth cloud Burkhead's status, at least to start the season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Herbert, a Dalvin Cook starter kit, saved a lot of fantasy GMS's 2021 seasons with his starter-level performances behind a lackluster Bears' line when David Montgomery got hurt. Cook made Damien Williams expendable and could carve out a recurring role in Chicago's offense. Even so, expect Montgomery to be a strong fantasy starter and Herbert to be the reserve with fantasy starter upside, if needed.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Herbert projects as a David Montgomery injury-away option in Chicago. Darrynton Evans is a wildcard addition to the depth chart but has struggled to stay healthy and Tennessee swiftly moved on from the former Round 3 pick.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Njoku is an excellent physical talent and he was a top draft prospect at his position. However, he didn't work at his craft well enough to prevent a lot of unforced errors with his game as a blocker and receiver. Before the season where the Browns went deep into the playoffs, Njoku asked for a trade. A year later, Njoku -- or perhaps his agent -- generated buzz for working harder in the offseason. If, like Jared Cook, Njoku matures as a professional with his approach to his job, he could become a strong fantasy TE1. Until then, I prefer to wait and see. Harrison Bryant isn't as athletic as Njoku but he's a savvier route runner who doesn't commit as many errors who could earn more targets with a new passer at the helm.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: The Browns made Njoku one of the league's highest-paid tight ends, which speaks to his opportunity. But a litany of injuries and subpar season totals leave me disinterested at the asking price.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Abram Smith could be a nice story if Alvin Kamara earns a suspension for an off-season altercation but Ingram is still good enough to start and produce between the tackles. Ingram is also the most experienced receiver of the depth chart. If the Saints lose Kamara and jail time is a possibility, a trade for a back like Kareem Hunt could be a viable course. Stay tuned.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Ingram is still in the catbird seat as an injury-away back to Alvin Kamara. Ingram is largely being overlooked within the backup running back landscape.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Ingram is 32 years old, and it's hard to imagine a fantasy-relevant role even if Alvin Kamara is limited to start the season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Jared Cook was on his last legs in 2021. Look for Everett to provide an upgrade. He's a strong player after the catch with enough speed to win up the seam and track the ball over his head. Look for him to deliver as a strong TE2 in most formats as Justin Herbert's No.4 option.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Everett will catch what's thrown to him but lacks the dynamism to do more after the catch or break big plays downfield. He'll have a role in Los Angeles, but his target share won't support a role in most fantasy leagues.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Michel has the all-around skills of a starter but the injury history of a reserve. He provides solid depth for Miami and likely pushes Salvon Ahmed, and Gerrid Doaks off the roster. He might also push Chase Edmonds for playing time.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Michel joins a Miami depth where any of Michel, Chase Edmonds, or Raheem Mostert could be the Week 1 starter or start multiple games this season.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Michel was added to the new Dolphins committee, but it's hard to envision him as anything more than the No. 2 or No. 3 option.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Edwards has RB3 upside if the Ravens' offense returns to 2019's form or RB2 upside if his rehab goes well and Josh Dobbins' rehab doesn't.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Edwards' healthy is the primary watchword heading into the season. J.K. Dobbins is also working back from a season-ending injury. Edwards, if the healthier option, could be the Week 1 starter. On the downside, Edwards could be slower back to health than Dobbins to siphon any clarified opportunity. Plus, Baltimore has eluded to concerns with Mike Davis signed.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Edwards and J.K. Dobbins both missed 2021, and both should be back to form a powerhouse committee in 2022.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: There are concerns for Patrick heading into 2022. First, the new coaching staff is not known for supporting multiple fantasy-relevant wide receivers. Second, Russell Wilson has done great at keeping two wideots invloved, but we've never seen him make three relevant. With Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton ahead of him on the depth chart, it may take an injury for Patrick to even be a waiver consideration in 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'm probably too low on Tonyan at this point of the year. After all, the Packers' tight ends earned 93 targets, 75 catches, 819 yards, and 15 scores during Tonyan's 2020 campaign. This year, I have the depth chart earning 94 targets, 56 catches, 595 yards, and 6 scores. I'll be increasing Tonyan's production as we learn more about his progress rehabbing a Week 8 ACL tear. If he's ahead of schedule, expect Tonyan to earn low-end TE1 production. If not, he might have a rockier season due to his recovery time table.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Tonyan's 2021 was lost to injury, but with Davante Adams gone, Tonyan could re-emerge as a high-TD producer.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Contemplating retirement, take a cautious approach with Anderson's value. This is where I would take him if he changes his mind quickly. Even so, when doubt enters a player's mind at this high of a level of a competitive field and Anderson's age, it's probably time to downgrade his value.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Robby Anderson is currently the #2 option in the Panthers wide receiver corps heading into the 2022 season. A career year in 2020 that included 95 catches for 1,097 yards and 3 touchdowns is sandwiched in between two much less productive 52 and 53-catch seasons. Interestingly enough, Anderson has 13 touchdowns in three years, eight of which came with Carolina. If the quarterback position improves and the offense becomes more consistent, Anderson has the potential to produce fantasy appeal as a flex option.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Carson Wentz's best fantasy trait is his ability to connect with tight ends. Although the Colts didn't have a single stand-out tight end last year, Mo Alie-Cox and Jack Doyle combined for value that was equivalent to a low-end TE1 in fantasy leagues. Thomas was an the cusp of elite production in 2020 when he played a full season. Expect a return to this type of volume and production. He's ahead of schedule with his ACL rehab.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Thomas is on the wrong side of 30 years old and only has one strong season under his belt, but Carson Wentz loves throwing to the tight end across the middle and in the red zone. Consider Thomas a high variance option as your starter.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: We all know Engram is physically capable of TE1 value. We also should all know that Engram doesn't stay healthy, drops a lot of passes, and has underachieved after making his mark as a rookie. Perhaps the light comes on for Engram, but I'd rather wait and see than invest substantial draft capital on him.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Evan Engram never panned out in New York, but the Jaguars still believe the best is yet to come. Don't count on it.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: Engram has always had the tools to succeed, but his health, and far too many drops, have held him back. Lawrence is an upgrade to Daniel Jones, and Doug Pederson's offense loves throwing to the tight end, he just needs to capitalize on the opportunity. We haven't seen a fantasy relevant season from him since 2017 despite being targeted over 60 times in every season since his rookie year. Regardless, you have to chase volume on lower-end tight ends in fantasy, so if you plan on drafting a tight end late, Engram should be on your radar.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Commanders envision Robinson as the close-out back for leads and a short-yardage option who can occasional earn targets from the backfield. While the dynamic with Robinson and Antonio Gibson is labeled a 1-2 punch, don't expect a true split in volume unless Gibson falters. Instead, think of Gibson as the lead back whose elite ceiling has dropped a floor and a half thanks to the roles parceled to Robinson and JD McKissic. Robinson has high-end RB2 upside if Gibson gets hurt. He's shifty for his size and a good passing-down option for his experience level.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Robinson enters a Washington depth chart where Antonio Gibson has struggled to stay healthy and avoid fumbles. Robinson had zero fumbles in college and has a lead-back profile. J.D. McKissic hurts the PPR upside of either, but Robinson is, at worst, an injury-away option.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Pierce is a ball-winning vertical threat who should benefit immediately from the Colts' effective play-action game and Matt Ryan's skills as a timing passer.
Ryan Weisse on Jun 10: Indianapolis was considered a favorable landing spot for any rookie wide receiver and Pierce is a good fit for the role opposite Michael Pittman. With Matt Ryan at quarterback, we should see overall improvement in the Colts' passing game and if Pierce can win the job quickly, he could approach 100 targets in his rookie season.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Alec Pierce has a chance to earn significant playing time as a rookie in the Colts offense. He has an excellent size/speed combination and has drawn similar comparisons to Jordy Nelson. The Colts aren't a high-volume pass offense, but Pierce can carve out a role as early as this year.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Collins has a WR2 ceiling if Davis Mills and the Texans OL can support the production in the passing game. I think they can but it will also come down to Collins improving his route running to expand his overall target profile. He's a worthwhile WR4-WR5 with a bye-week/flex floor and WR2 upside.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Pre-John Metchie, Collins was a big sleeper for me. That said, there could still be value in the 2nd-year wideout. I expect plenty of bad game scripts for Houston and that should lead to enough passing attempts to go around. He averaged 40 yards per game over the last five of 2021, so 700 yards and five touchdowns is not impossible.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hooper was a TE1 with Matt Ryan for two years before joining a crowded tight end room in Cleveland with a sub-par starting quarterback who didn't read the field well. Ryan Tannehill isn't as accomplished as Ryan, but he's a notch better than Baker Mayfield. Hooper has potential for borderline TE1 value but will likely be most serviceable as a bye-week matchup option with TE2 value.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Middling numbers in two seasons in Cleveland, but has a massive target share opportunity in Tennesse if he can quickly build rapport with Ryan Tannehill.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Williams is the quintessential journeyman reserve who can contribute meaningful committee production for a team and RB3-RB4 fantasy value. When asked to do more, he can deliver RB2 value. Think of Williams as Mike Davis version 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Mike Davis' release aids Williams' chances to be the RB2, or even the starter if Cordarrelle Patterson transitions back to wide receiver, for the Falcons.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Damien Williams has the opportunity to step into the role vacated by Mike Davis.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Osborn showed legitimate contributor skills after injuries hit this Vikings passing game during the year. With Minnesota spreading the field more this year, expect Osborn's value to remain stable this year as the No.3-No.4 option in the passing game for a quarterback delivering 4,300-4,500 yards and 30-35 touchdowns of production.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Texans need more reliable options in the passing game beyond Brandin Cooks. The two that offered the most long-term potential as more than role players were Nico Collins and Jordan, the second-year option from Miami. If Jordan attains his goal of becoming a three-down option, he could be the No.2 or No.3 option in the passing game this year.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Rookie tight ends rarely put up big numbers, but Jordan has the pedigree, skill set, and opportunity to break out for a young Texans offense desperate for playmakers.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: Hype and draft capital did not line up for Jordan last year but he played well when he got the chance. He didn't play until Week 8, but was targeted 28 times and scored three touchdowns. He could easily double those stats in 2022, and will be on many streaming lists if the Texans commit to using one tight end instead of a committee.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Algeier has starter potential for the Falcons with Mike Davis gone, Cordarrelle Patterson rumored to have more of a wide receiver role this season, and Damien Williams on the wrong side of the age curve. The perfect storm of Allgeier being this year's Elijah Mitchell as an early-season starter from Day 3 exists even if requiring a leap of faith.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A skilled player who can't stay healthy long enough for a team to regard him as a reliable building block. He's now a journeyman with upside value who can deliver big plays from the slot and occasionally in the perimeter vertical game.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: White is returning from injury and the Patriots splashed the depth chart with multiple Day 3 running backs with quality profiles (Pierre Strong, Kevin Harris). The five-back depth chart could have a tough cut by Week 1.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: White is an all-time Belichick favorite, and he re-signed again. But the days of marginal fantasy value are long gone.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hurst is a journeyman option with acceleration to get up the seam and he does solid work as an check-down option in the underneath zones. Look for Hurst to team with Drew Sample as a 1-2 punch in the offense with Sample as the in-line blocker and Hurst the primary receiver. Cincinnati has four compelling options ahead of Hurst in the passing game, so anything north of 600 yards and 5 touchdowns for Hurst would be a surprise. Fantasy TE1 territory is not in the cards, but Hurst can offer compelling bye-week production with a friendly mathcup.
Jason Wood on Jun 6:
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: While many are anointing Dameon Pierce as the earmarked starter in Houston, it is Mack with the best production profile, and it is not particularly close, on the depth chart. Mack is still a bit of a wildcard health-wise after his Achilles injury but is the probability bet over Rex Burkhead and a Day 3 Pierce, especially for the cost.
Ryan Weisse on May 25: This is a case of perfect fit to a team need. If he's healthy, Metchie will start in the slot immediately. With two decent targets on the outside taking attention away, Metchie could have a solid season living in the middle of the field. Danny Amendola was at almost five targets per game in eight games last year. So, 80-85 is a fair floor for Metchie if he plays the full season.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I'm projecting Peoples-Jones at his most likely point of upside. He lacks a big ceiling in this Browns offense and he lacks the route running skills to match-up against top cornerbacks.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hilliard is the veteran of note behind Derrick Henry. Holding off rookie Hassan Haskins will be key to being an injury away from a prominent role.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Perine has avoided additional competition for the RB2 role in Cincinnati this offseason. Chris Evans could steal receiving work if Joe Mixon is out and Perine projects as a lower upside fantasy streamer.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Kenneth Gainwell is the passing-down option of choice, but Boston Scott is the better overall running back. If Miles Sanders falters, Scott likely earns a bigger fantasy workload than Gainwell. Also seriously consider UDFA Kennedy Brooks as a potential option.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Scott has limited upside with Kenneth Gainwell a receiving-centric option also behind Miles Sanders in Philadelphia.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Green wasn't bad last year for a player of his age and recent spate of injuries. I expect better rapport with Kyler Murray and the Cardinals will need him as a high-volume contributor for at least the first six games of the year.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If the boneheaded arrest to add to his criminal resume doesn't cost Pringle significant playing time, his skills will be in demand for the Bears. He's a good YAC producer with vertical speed, and skill in the middle of the field.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Bell might be the safest WR on the Browns, even as a rookie. If Deshaun Watson plays, Bell will thrive on the routes that Watson is best at targeting both in the short and intermediate passing games. If Brissett starts, Bell's slot play will make him the safety blanket. Expect high-volume production by rookie standards.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Breida's injury history is substantial enough to have concerns that he can handle a strong enough workload to produce if Saquon Barkley gets hurt. Still, Breida is an accomplished runner with the most upside of the Giants' depth chart.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Breida is one of the underrated injury-away situations post-NFL Draft. Breida lacks ideal size but is the leader in the clubhouse behind Saquon Barkley.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: DeVante Parker has had difficulty staying healthy and he's not known as a student of the game, which often trips up receivers joining the Patriots. Tyquan Thornton may need a year or two, at best, to acclimate and develop. The most versatile and trusted option for the Patriots might be Bourne. Expect Bourne to sustain, if not develop additional, rapport with Mac Jones that translates to fantasy production of a low-end starter.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Palmer has enough red-zone prowess and underneath route skills to earn the No.3 receiver role in the offense and generate bye-week production. An injury to a teammate could elevate Palmer's production significantly, especially if it is Mike Williams.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Foreman joins the Carolina depth chart where Chuba Hubbard had and largely lost the injury-away role in 2021. Foreman showed well in Tennessee and projects as the leading rusher if Christian McCaffrey were to miss time.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Foreman helped fill the void for Tennessee which included three 100-yard efforts and touchdowns in three of the last five games. Foreman gives the Panthers a power-back option at running back and a decent replacement if the need arises.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Fantasy GMs and analysts always talk about not getting fooled by players. At this range of the draft, I'm more concerned about talent and potential than I am about how others perceive my choices. Any player at this range of the draft has flaws and/or obstacles to starter production. I'll take my chances with the versatile veteran here. He's needed more in Green Bay than he was in Kansas City.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Williams is still looking for work, but showed well in Kansas City and was the preferred option over Clyde Edwards-Helaire at times. Monitor Williams to crash a depth chart by Week 1.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Brate is the most game-proven tight end on the roster after Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement. Keep an eye on Cade Otton, an underrated route runner and blocker who could emerge fast enough in training camp to earn a role. Don't expect the Tampa tight ends to have remotely the fantasy ceiling they had with Gronkowski in the fold unless the team adds a proven veteran starter. And that proven vet could be Gronkowski after the halfway mark of the season, according to Drew Rosenhaus' conversation with Adam Schefter.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The retirement announcement of Rob Gronkowski opens the door for Brate to be a fantasy factor. However, Tampa Bay has ample time to address the position, if desired, in free agency (think Jared Cook) before Week 1. Plus, it has been years since Brate's career peak usage and production.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: If Rob Gronkowski retires, Brate will be a steal for anyone who rostered him early in draft season. If Gronk plays, Brate is an easy avoid.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: White will be in competition with Kenyan Drake for the primary backup role behind Josh Jacobs in Las Vegas. Health is a major question mark with White after multiple significant knee injuries in college.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: At the tender age of 24 Campbell has plenty to offer, he just needs to catch a break and shed the injury prone label. He has a good chance to be the Colts primary slot receiver in 2022 with the only competition coming from veterans Keke Coutee and Ashton Dulin. He is also entering a contract year where if he proves he can put up decent, consistent numbers, he'll potentially cash-in on a new deal in 2023.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Haskins has an opportunity to win the RB2 job in Tennessee as a Day 3 rookie.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Duvernay made strides in his second year and has earned the praise of his coaching staff as a player likely to become a bigger part of the Ravens' offense. His vertical speed, YAC skills, and versatility match the offense's demands.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Rookie Jelani Woods was a workout warrior this winter, but that athletic ability did not show up as well on film. Even if Woods proves worthy of his draft capital and the buzz the fantasy community has bestowed, it's unlikely to happen in 2022. Alie-Cox is the best receiver on the position's depth chart and expect him to lead the way. He'll deliver compelling bye-week production for fantasy GMs.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: The converted basketball player will have his moments but lacks the regular targets to factor into 12-team leagues.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: While the 99 targets in 2021 were nice, what Shenault did with them was not. Managing just 619 yards and ZERO touchdowns, Shenault disappointed fantasy managers. With more competition for touches and likely fewer passing attempts heading his way, don't expect much better in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hubbard was the clear RB2 early in Christian McCaffrey's extended absence last season. However, Ameer Abdullah siphoned plenty of touches and eroded Hubbard's viability. This offseason D'Onta Foreman has been added to cloud Hubbard yet again.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: D'Onta Foreman signed this offseason, and stands a good shot at displacing Hubbard as Christian McCaffrey's backup.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The 49ers are one of the tougher to project depth charts in the NFL. Upside abounds if getting it right any particular week. Davis-Price is the latest Day 2 investment in the position after Trey Sermon showed little in 2021.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Carolina's #3 option at wide receiver is currently Terrace Marshall, the upstart, but young receiver from LSU will be entering his second year in the league. Marshall has adequate, if not above-average talent at the position but he is also young (will turn 22 in June). Despite having a few promising games early in 2021, Marshall disappeared in the home stretch and was not involved in the offense, especially after Carolina moved on from offensive coordinator, Joe Brady last December. Marshall is younger than many draft prospects entering the league and in many ways is like an additional draft pick for the Panthers in 2022. He will have a chance to grown and develop in Ben McAdoo's offense.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: If Washington could run routes as well as he wins the ball, he'd be a top-15 receiver. He may have 4-6 weeks with that kind of production this year due to need, but determining when this happens may prove maddening because the lows will be very low.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A former five-star back at Texas, Ingram got bumped by fellow five-star option Bijan Robinson and made his way to USC. As a Trojan Ingram showed off his versatility as a quick but powerful back with agility who can win in the passing game. He's an underrated option with a real shot to win the RB2 role sometime this year and develop into a starter in a year or two. If James Conner gets hurt that opportunity could come now.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Ingram has prototypical size, good enough athleticism, and a quality receiving profile. Securing Day 3 pedigree, Ingram will compete with Eno Benjamin for the RB2 role in Arizona.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The Patriots' depth chart is cloudy with five quality options to begin training camp. Strong is on the older side but has a good combination of size and two-way producer from college should the early Day 3 rookie see an opportunity.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Vaughn has the upside to be the RB2 in Tampa Bay, but Rachaad White's drafting throws a wrench into those plans. Vaughn has shown little through two seasons and remains a project as to his fantasy upside.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I expect him to play in L.A. in November. I'll likely lower his ranking within the next month but the value he can provide when healthy will make him a worthwhile late-round pick.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Wilson is the lost name in the 49ers backfield where Elijah Mitchell is returning from knee surgery, Trey Sermon was in the doghouse last year, and Tyrion Davis-Price is an incoming rookie. Wilson is worth a dart throw who has shown well in the past.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Jones will likely have the edge over Laviska Shenault and Jamal Agnew as the No.3 receiver and No.4 option in the passing attack for an ascending quarterback talent that I believe will surpass the 4,000-yard mark this year.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Smith has bye-week value dictated by matchup and future knowledge of his role as a the second tight end in the Patriots offense. He'll offer borderline TE1 upside if Hunter Henry misses significant time, but don't expect Smith to offer the same savvy with routes or as high of a catch rate.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Fell well short of expectations last year, and was handily outplayed by Hunter Henry. Expect more of the same in 2022.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The 49ers splashed the depth chart again in 2022 with a Day 2 draft pick on Tyrion Davis-Price. Sermon was a Day 2 selection as well in 2021, but landed in the doghouse early and often as Elijah Mitchell surged to the starting role. Investing the backfield requires a risk-taking attitude and, ideally, seeking the cheaper options.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Evans is more of a PPR thorn in the side of Samaje Perine should Joe Mixon miss time rather than a standalone upside value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: The Cool-Kids section of fantasy analysts will hate Rodgers because he doesn't match the metrics they count on as an athlete or first-year producer. However, Rodgers' game matches the early buzz from camp. Expect him to make significant inroads with not only replacing Randall Cobb's production from 2021 but adding to it. He can win inside and outside and if Aaron Rodgers says they are on the same page, look out.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I have a feeling Kareem Hunt could be dealt at some point this year and the one-year deal Johnson signed is to insure the Browns have an experienced backup with proven skills to replace Hunt's role or take over for Nick Chubb if Chubb gets hurt. At worse, Johnson is a valuable third option with strong fantasy RB2 upside if Chubb and Hunt get hurt.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Johnson showed well in 2021 with spot duty as the Browns starter. This year is more ambiguous with Kareem Hunt still on the roster (for now) and Jerome Ford a notable Day 3 draft addition.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Benjamin did not separate himself as the clear RB3 last season in Arizona and the only competition for the injury-away role behind James Conner is Day 3 rookie Keaontay Ingram.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: The former Dolphins starter has been buried in an avalanche of additions by Miami in Chase Edmonds, Sony Michel, and Raheem Mostert. Gaskin is now yet another Day 3 running back searching for a clarified opportunity.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Trautman is in a prove it year and he'll have a much better receiving corps that should increase the efficiency of his opportunities. However that receiving corps of Jarvis Landry, Chris Olave, and Michael Thomas means Trautman will rarely be the primary option on a play. Unless he makes good in most of is high-leverage situations, it's unlikely his role translates to fantasy TE1 value unless one of these three options gets hurt, or Jameis Winston delivers an elite season and can support 4-5 fantasy options. I'm expecting a good year for Winston, but not a great one. It means Trautman's value as a TE is possible, but not likely.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Didn't emerge in Jared Cook's absence, although the quarterback situation was partially to blame. Can Winston unlock Trautman's value? Don't draft him counting on it, but be open to the possibility.
Jason Wood on Jun 6:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Bernard can still play and he dominated 2021 training camp with his usage but suffered an injury early in the year and didn't get a lot of playing time. With Leonard Fournette 10-20 pounds overweight and the staff unhappy with his freelancing of routes, Bernard could earn an opportunity for more playing time. Yes, Rachaad White can catch the ball, but the rookie is unlikely to earn the trust of Tom Brady out of the gate. Bernard is my hedge for the passing game this year.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: Bernard's role as a third-down specialist is on the downslope, which leaves him with almost no fantasy value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Uzomah has red zone skills and can work the seams but he'll also be splitting time with Tyler Conklin, who is a better route runner and arguably a better pass catcher. And until we see progress from Zach Wilson, both players are late-round speculative additions or options for the waiver wire.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: An alarming injury history, but probably gets the first crack at the starting role unless Tyler Conklin balls out this summer.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: As detailed with Njoku's ranking, Bryant is a skilled receiver and the Browns have noted they have underutilized him. Baker Mayfield's decision-making and pocket feel exacerbated the underutilization of Bryant. If Bryant's production is promising early in the year, he'll be worth a priority addition off your waiver wire.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Carson has one of the highest range of outcomes of NFL backs. Carson may not play again with his neck injury and recovery process. Also in play is Carson being Seattle's starter if healthy as Rashaad Penny has rarely been healthy in his career and Kenneth Walker is an incoming rookie with pass protection work to do.
Jason Wood on Jun 7: It's uncertain we'll ever see Carson on an NFL field again.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Signing with the Colts in mid-May, Lindsay offers a veteran presence for carries instead of the rookie competition for carries behind Jonathan Taylor outside of change-of-pace Nyheim Hines.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Davis left an RB2 (or better) role in Atlanta as a surprise post-NFL Draft release to find the Baltimore depth chart dealing with returns from injury with J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards. Davis' addition points to some level of concern for Dobbins and/or Edwards. There's a non-zero chance Davis is the Week 1 starter for Baltimore.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A promising athlete as an H-Back, the Panthers are in flux at the quarterback position. He should be available on waiver wires early in the year. Monitor.
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Tommy Tremble had seven games with 2+ receptions as a rookie in 2021 and remains a player who should continue to develop in Carolina's offensive structure in 2022 and beyond.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Snell is the projected RB2 for the Steelers, one of the least inspiring injury-away running backs for fantasy upside.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Williams started the NFL Draft process with some discussion of being a Day 2 prospect. Ultimately Williams slipped to mid-Day 3 and landed on a blocked Rams depth chart. Williams will compete with previous Day 3 selection Jake Funk for the RB3 role.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Callaway still offers WR4 potential for the Saints and has a WR3 ceiling if injuries strike. He's a bye-week option for fantasy GMs.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: He'll be back in Tampa for one more year. He has essentially stated as much on social media and he only needs 1-2 weeks to be ready. Although no longer the dominant athlete he was at his peak, Gronkowski remains an elite football player at his position and the Buccaneers need him more than ever with Chris Godwin rehabbing and Antonio Brown walking away from his career.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Gronkowski announced his retirement, but there's still a chance he plays in some capacity in 2022. In deeper leagues, Gronkowski still may be worth a late flyer selection considering the per-game upside Gronkowski offers at a position with a substantial drop-off after 20-25 options.
Jeff Haseley on Jun 17: The sole reason Rob Gronkowski has a lower ADP is the uncertainty surrounding his availability in 2022. Will he return for another season with Tom Brady? My gut says he will. Once Brady decided to return, all eyes were on Gronkowski to do the same. We have yet to hear of his intentions because I believe he is prolonging his decision to see as little training camp as possible. When he does decide to return, his ADP will jump into the top 12, which is still a bargain considering he finished TE7 last year despite playing only 12 games. He ranked 4th among tight ends after Week 10. Gronkowski is a small gamble with a sizeable reward.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Remains undecided on playing in 2022, which justifiably depresses his draft value. If he plays, he'll provide low-end TE1 value in 12-team leagues.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Moss has faded from relevance on the Bills depth chart with Devin Singletary's usage dwarfing Moss' in 2021. Add in Round 2 rookie James Cook and Moss is multiple injuries from being fantasy viable.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Moreau might be the best backup TE in the league. He has legitimate top-12 fantasy receiving talent and should earn a starter contract elsewhere when his rookie deal expires. If Darren Waller missed significant time, Moreau is a priority addition from your waiver wire.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: A journeyman pass catcher who does his best work against zone coverage. He can have bye-week value, if not more, but he's rarely anything more than a check-down option with occasional schemed plays in the red zone.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Could be in line for a starting role in New York, but rookie Daniel Bellinger is already pushing for snaps.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: DeVante Parker, Jakobi Meyers, and Kendrick Bourne are the likely receiver rotation to begin the season. However, I'm projecting Agholor's upside in case Parker falters--which has been frequent enough during his career. The safest wide receivers for the Patriots are Bourne and Meyers but they also have the least upside compared to Parker and Agholor. Consider Agholor a reserve with volatile production potential.
Ryan Weisse on May 24: I believe that James Robinson will miss at least six games in 2022 and won't be as effective a runner when he does return. If I'm right, Conner could be the back up for 6-8 weeks and handle more work than you'd expect from a 5th-Round pick. I like Travis Etienne a lot this season, but he can't take every carry. Conner finished college with 5.2 YPC and 26 touchdowns on 300 total carries at Ole Miss. He hasn't shown much in passing game but they don't need him there. At 5'10" 220 lbs, he can be a goal-line guy and steal some touchdowns.
Los Angeles Rams
Jason Wood on Jun 6: An athlete capable of the occasional big play, but not a cornerstone piece of the Chargers offense.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: McBride is the most game-ready rookie tight end in this draft class and he should earn some regular playing time in two tight end sets with Zach Ertz this year. This may only translate to a modest amount of production but with Maxx Williams still recovering from injury and DeAndre Hopkins serving a six-game suspension, an injury to Ertz could vault McBride into a bigger role and he has the skills to leverage it into fantasy value.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Conklin is a skilled receiver and route runner as a detached tight end or on the wing. He's also a better blocker than his size indicates. For now, expect him to split duties with C.J. Uzomah in New York. Be ready to adjust to the dictates of Zach Wilson and you might find fantasy value from one of these options by the end of September.
Jason Wood on Jun 6: Conklin is one of several options in New York, but can he earn the starting role? Any chance of fantasy relevance hinges on a monstrous training camp.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Otton becomes more intriguing. He's an excellent blocker with underrated receiving skills that his quarterback at Washington didn't optimize. Rookies rarely offer starter production at the position, but Otton's skills are good enough that, if called upon, especially with Tom Brady at the helm, he could generate fantasy value off the waiver wire.
Los Angeles Chargers
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Dulcich has speed to win up the seam and he tracks the ball well. His blocking needs work. Expect him to earn a contributing role this year, but not one with great production value. If this changes, it's because the Broncos see potential to give Dulcich the Noah Fant role as a highly schemed target who doesn't have to win one-on-one. Monitor this potential over the summer.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: At best Coleman would be in a committee with Michael Carter should Breece Hall miss time and clarify the Jets' packed depth chart.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Jason Wood on Jun 3: Is he a quarterback or a tight end? And does it really matter for fantasy purposes?
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Johnson has athleticism and receiving upside, but is buried on the Jets depth chart with the addition of Breece Hall plus Tevin Coleman returning in 2022.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
New England Patriots
Jeff Haseley on May 23: Frank Reich and his staff are loaded with fast, rangy, tall, big catch-radius receivers, and Granson, albeit a tight end, also fits that role. He will likely be used as such as a hybrid move tight end/receiver in this offense. Fantasy success at the tight end position is difficult to come by in Indianapolis due to multiple options sharing the target share. Granson is a player to watch as he continues to expand his knowledge at the position.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: While I expect the Saints to acquire another running back if Alvin Kamara's altercation leads to a suspension, Smith is a natural wide zone runner with enough power to perform well as part of a committee with the Saints.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Boone was in line to be the RB2 in Denver, but Melvin Gordon's return pushes Boone back to needing multiple injuries for a prominent role.
San Francisco 49ers
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: I have doubts about Corey Davis staying healthy. I have doubts about analysts who claim Mims doesn't fit the Jets system. I have no doubts that Mims fell ill last spring and fell greatly behind. I have no doubts that Mims is in great shape. I have doubts the Jets will have an open competition for starting roles. Still, I projected Mims based on the idea that they will. Expect Mims to slide down my board as the reality that the depth chart is already set.
Equanimeous St. Brown
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Hassan Haskins is the Titans' hope as a RB2 for the team who can grow into a lead back if necessary. Jordan Wilkins is the hedge as the RB2 if Haskins can't acclimate to the NFL. Haskins lacks a lot of juice and his decision-making isn't as well-rounded and savvy as Wilkins, so I'm betting on Wilkins until Haskins proves he's ready this year.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: This is the upside angle I'm projecting for Miller because Antonio Brown is no longer part of the picture and Chris Godwin's rehab may require him to miss much of the season. Miller provides the best chance of stretching the field and making tough catches after Mike Evans.
Green Bay Packers
New Orleans Saints
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Phillip Lindsay signing with the Colts hurts Jackson's chances for the RB3 role, or the most carries if Jonathan Taylor misses time, at the outset of 2022.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Okonkwo has a lot of qualities similar to Delanie Walker. He's proving a quick study thus far in OTAs. Although he's not expected to overtake Austin Hooper this year, he could generate occasional fantasy value as a part of two tight end sets, especially as the Titans wait for Robert Woods to rehab his ACL and deal with the likely ups and downs of a young receiving corps.
New York Jets
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Kansas City Chiefs
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Johnson is one of the intriguing veteran running backs lurking in free agency to sign with a needy team should injury or young players not instill confidence through camp and the preseason.
Matt Waldman on Jun 27: Calcaterra's strength is catching the ball and winning against zone or making tight-coverage plays up the seams on red zone plays. If Dallas Goedert gets hurt, Calcaterra could earn some bye-week value for fantasy GMs depending on the matchup.
Jason Wood on Jun 6:
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Booker is one of the intriguing veteran running backs lurking in free agency to sign with a needy team should injury or young players not instill confidence through camp and the preseason.
Chad Parsons on Jun 23: Hyde is one of the intriguing veteran running backs lurking in free agency to sign with a needy team should injury or young players not instill confidence through camp and the preseason.
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
New York Giants
Las Vegas Raiders
Jason Wood on Jun 7:
Jason Wood on Jun 7: