Fanelli’s Fantasy Files: NFC West Bold Predictions


While the 2022 NFL season is still months away, it is never too early to prepare for the fantasy season. Whether it’s research, mock drafts, or going with your gut, everyone has a way to prepare for their fantasy drafts. However, this isn’t another article to help you prepare for the fantasy season. Today I give a bold prediction for every team in the NFC West: the Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, and Seattle Seahawks.

All stats are base on PPR scoring.

Be sure to check out all of Fanelli’s Fantasy Bold Predictions.

Marquise Brown Leads the NFL in Air Yards

Brown’s fantasy value dramatically changed this offseason. He is reunited with his college quarterback Kyler Murray and will step into the No. 1 wide receiver role. DeAndre Hopkins won’t play the first six weeks of the season because of a suspension, while Christian Kirk left in free agency. Brown will step into a large target share on an offense that likes to push the ball downfield. Last year, Murray averaged 288.3 air yards and 5.1 deep ball attempts per game, both ranking in the top 15. Meanwhile, Brown averaged 94.9 air yards per game last year in Baltimore, the 11th most among wide receivers. Brown should have a career year in 2022, especially on big plays downfield.

Allen Robinson is a Top-15 Wide Receiver

Some believe Robinson is washed, while others think he is due for a bounce-back season. He’s not washed. Last season, Robert Woods and Odell Beckham Jr. filled in as the No. 2 wide receiver opposite of Cooper Kupp. The two never played a game together, but their combined 17-game stat line in Los Angeles was productive. They combined for 72 receptions on 117 targets for 861 receiving yards, nine touchdowns, a 19.5 percent target share, and 13.2 fantasy points per game. Those numbers would have ended last year as the WR23. However, remember that Woods got off to a slow start, and Beckham joined the team midseason. Robinson should easily see a 21-23 percent target share this season. If he does, Robinson has top-15 upside.

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Trey Lance is a Top-Five Quarterback

All signs point to Lance being the starter this year, as it’s only a matter of time before Garoppolo is traded or released. While he played sparingly last season, Lance was productive when given a chance. He started two games last season for an injured Garoppolo. Lance also played the entire second half of the Week 4 matchup against the Seahawks after Garoppolo suffered an injury right before halftime. In those 2.5 games, Lance scored 54 fantasy points. Adjusting for playing only 10 quarters of football instead of 12, Lance averaged 21.6 fantasy points per game last season in a situation where he was the starter. Lance will become a fantasy superstar once he takes over as the starter, thanks to his supporting cast and rushing ability.

Rashaad Penny is a Bust at his Current ADP

Yes, Penny had a historic five-game stretch to close out last season, but four of those games came against awful run defenses while he struggled in the matchup against the Rams. After scoring only 149.1 total fantasy points in the first three years of his NFL career, Penny scored 121.7 fantasy points in 10 games last season. However, 103.8 of his fantasy points from last season came in those four great matchup games (85.3 percent). Furthermore, the Seahawks didn’t use a second-round pick on Kenneth Walker so he can sit on the bench. With Russell Wilson now in Denver, defenses will load the box to stop the run. Given the lack of consistent production and injury history, you should not draft Penny at his current ADP.

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Twitter: @PTSTNews and @TalkPrimeTime
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