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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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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?
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: Adams' trade to the Raiders affects the upside of Hunter Renfrow and Darren Waller more pushing down Adams' range of outcomes in 2022.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 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.
Chad Parsons on May 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
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?
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Amon-Ra St. Brown
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.
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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Jason Wood on May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 24: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: Gainwell is more of a thorn in the PPR side of Miles Sanders (and Boston Scott) than a standalone fantasy viable running back.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 23: Gronkowski has yet to officially return to the NFL for 2022. If active with Tampa Bay, Gronkowski represents a top-12 tight end. If retired, Gronkowski represents a zero for early drafters. Considering the minimal difference between TE15 and TE25+, the risk of Gronkowski not playing is worth it.
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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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 May 21: 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 May 21: Scott has limited upside with Kenneth Gainwell a receiving-centric option also behind Miles Sanders in Philadelphia.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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 May 21: 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 May 21: Haskins has an opportunity to win the RB2 job in Tennessee as a Day 3 rookie.
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 May 21: 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.
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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 May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Los Angeles Rams
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Los Angeles Chargers
Chad Parsons on May 22: Evans is more of a PPR thorn in the side of Samaje Perine should Joe Mixon miss time rather than a standalone upside value.
New England Patriots
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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 May 22: Snell is the projected RB2 for the Steelers, one of the least inspiring injury-away running backs for fantasy upside.
Green Bay Packers
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
San Francisco 49ers
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 May 21: 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.
New Orleans Saints
Kansas City Chiefs
Chad Parsons on May 22: At best Coleman would be in a committee with Michael Carter should Breece Hall miss time and clarify the Jets' packed depth chart.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
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.
Las Vegas Raiders
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.
Chad Parsons on May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.
Equanimeous St. Brown
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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 May 21: 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.
Chad Parsons on May 22: 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.