Football is back! With the preseason underway, fantasy players are doing mock drafts hourly (or maybe it’s just me) to prepare for their fantasy drafts. Each year fantasy players want to construct their team with a proper mix of good value players and upside sleepers while avoiding players with high bust potential. In the fifth part of an eight-part series, I will look over the AFC North and provide ADP values, likely to bust candidates and potential sleepers.
Players ADP is from Fantasy Pro’s PPR ADP.
Be sure to check out all eight parts of Fanelli’s ADP values, busts, and sleepers series.
Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers (WR22, 55.2 ADP)
Despite missing a game and leaving several others, Johnson led the team with 144 targets. Furthermore, his 144 targets finished eighth in the league. Yet, even with the high number of targets, Johnson caught only 61 percent of his targets and averaged 14.8 fantasy points per game, finishing as the WR21. However, removing the three games Johnson played under 50 percent of the snaps last season, he averaged 17.7 fantasy points per game. On a points per game basis, Johnson’s 17.7 fantasy points per game would have finished as the WR6. Furthermore, while Johnson is not the same level of talent Davante Adams is, both players struggled with drops in their second year in the league.
In 2015, Adams’ second year in the league, he dropped 12 of his 94 targets (13 percent). By comparison, Johnson dropped 16 of his 144 targets last season (11 percent). Then, in 2016, Adams broke out. That year, Adams averaged 15.4 fantasy points per game and finished as the WR9. Despite leading the league in drops, Johnson put up top-12 numbers when healthy and on the field. Much like Adams, expect Johnson to put the drops behind him and have that breakout third season and turn into a superstar wide receiver. Grabbing Johnson as your WR2 could turn into a league-winning move.
Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals (WR37, 96.3 ADP)
Boyd led the team in targets (110), catches (79), and fantasy points per game (12.8) last season. Furthermore, in the 10 games Burrow played last season, Boyd averaged 6.9 catches on 8.7 targets for 71 yards and 16.2 fantasy points per game. While some will worry about the addition of Ja’Marr Chase and his impact on Boyd, they shouldn’t. Last season, A.J. Green was one of Burrow’s favorite targets, as he averaged 7.7 targets per game with Burrow under center. Furthermore, Burrow was one of three quarterbacks to average over 40 pass attempts per game last season. In the nine full games Burrow played last season, he averaged 41.1 pass attempts per game. Boyd might lack the upside Chase or Tee Higgins has, but he is being seriously undrafted.
Jarvis Landry, Cleveland Browns (WR41, 105.7 ADP)
Even after spending most of the season as the Browns’ No. 1 wide receiver, Landry finished the year as the WR33, averaging only 12.5 fantasy points per game. Furthermore, it was Landry’s lowest-scoring fantasy season since his rookie year. Yet, according to Fantasy Football Calculator, Landry’s ADP is higher than receivers like Curtis Samuel, Laviska Shenault Jr., and Darnell Mooney. Even with Odell Beckham Jr. sidelined for nine games last season, Landry had near or career-lows across the board in catches (72), targets (101), receiving yards (840), and receiving touchdowns (three). Landry’s ceiling is extremely limited with Beckham returning and the development of the younger wide receivers. Furthermore, in most drafts, you can argue Landry shouldn’t be selected at all.
Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns (QB16, 134.8 ADP)
Last season, Mayfield finished the year as the QB25 on a point per game basis, averaging 15.5 per game. Furthermore, Mayfield has averaged under 17.5 fantasy points per game every year of his career as the Browns are a run-first team. Last season, Mayfield finished 17th in the NFL with 486 pass attempts. However, he had only 82 more attempts than Burrow despite playing in 6.5 more games. Furthermore, Mayfield has never thrown for 3,900 yards in a season. Mayfield also has limited rushing value, averaging 1.5 fantasy points per game on the ground for his career. While Mayfield is a good quarterback for the Browns, he should only get selected in two quarterback or super flex drafts.
Gus Edwards, Baltimore Ravens (RB44, 129.8 ADP)
While J.K. Dobbins is the lead back in Baltimore, Edwards plays a critical role in the Ravens rushing attack. Last season, Edwards led all running backs on the team with 144 rushing attempts. In the offseason, the Ravens let Mark Ingram walk, and they didn’t add a running back to replace him. Furthermore, the Ravens signed Edwards to a two-year, $9 million contract extension, making him a critical part of their team moving forward. Lastly, Edwards finished last year as the RB37, finishing as a top-36 running back in over half of his games despite playing only 34.7 percent of the snaps. If Dobbins misses time with an injury, Edwards goes from a flex option to a plug-and-play RB1, even in PPR leagues.
Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (QB22, 161.8 ADP)
Coming off major elbow surgery, many had concerns about Roethlisberger entering the 2020 season. However, despite a career-low of 6.3 yards per pass attempt, Roethlisberger averaged 17.8 fantasy points per game, finishing as the QB14. Furthermore, Roethlisberger finished less than 14 fantasy points behind Matt Ryan for the QB12 finish. Despite another year removed from elbow surgery and his trio of excellent receivers, Roethlisberger is undervalued. According to Fantasy Football Calculator, Roethlisberger is getting drafted later than quarterbacks like Mayfield and Deshaun Watson on average. The addition of Najee Harris will cut back on the number of pass plays the Steelers call this season. However, Roethlisberger should still average enough pass attempts per game to still finish in the top-15 quarterbacks.
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