It is far, far too early for fantasy football analysis. We just found out who teams are playing against but with little to no injuries about injuries and contract holdouts or the like, it is hard to come up with cogent arguments.
This series will review the value of specific rookies and as we are far out I will focus on rookies who are the most likely to have a starting role, who will have one from the get go and how I believe that will project outward. At the end, I will indicate where I think the given player SHOULD be drafted. This way, if you miss out on the player because someone pulled the trigger too prematurely, you can smirk and pick someone more valuable when the pick comes around to you. Likewise, if the player no one believes in falls to you, it’s time for a mental fist-pump.
***before we get started each week I will remind everyone that the analysis in this series is based on regular, season-long point per reception scoring. It also assumes you play in a 12 team league***
While the improvement of Daniel Jones was surprising to those who really didn’t like the prospect it was also capped by the lack of pass catchers. Sterling Sheppard and Golden Tate only played 12 games a piece, Evan Engram did decently but was also disappointing to those who watched the games because of his volume of drops, route miscommunications and inability to capitalize.
So we know that Saquon Barkley is a lock and load RB1 and Evan Engram is likely going to be a top 7 tight end. At receiver however, this is where the Giants needed to improve (this will even help the other two fantasy stalwarts). Last season this is how the Giants top three wide receivers finished (on a points per game basis):
Sterling Sheppard: Position Rank- 51 FPG- 8
Darius Slayton: Position Rank- 56 FPG- 5.7
Golden Tate: Position Rank- 92 FPG-4.3
The top dog in this offense will be Kenny Golladay and as far as receiver go, he will definitely eat first. Darius Slayton will have some boom or bust value. I also think one of the speedsters (John Ross or Dante Pettis will have a role). However, I think Kadarius Toney will have value early on.
If all goes well the Giants offense will be vastly improved. Toney will have scripted plays if the NFL comp to Percy Harvin is accurate. Expect a few hand-offs, rpos and screens. I honestly think that in the first quarter of the season we will see a minimum of 5 targets a game directed toward Toney as they look to put Daniel Jones in a better spot than they have in his first two seasons.
Where should you draft Kadarius Toney: In every draft you will inevitably reach the point in the draft where you’ll need to draft a wr4-5. This usually comes from rounds 8-12 and most of the names will not excite you. Every fantasy player is given the choice between drafting a player that they know is consistent but has little hope of being anything but a bye week replacement. However, my suggestion here is always to draft upside as a bye week plug can be picked up at any time. A player who will get you between 2-6 points per week won’t win you your league but a player with upside who can take over your WR3 role or become a valuable trade asset may.
Quick Analysis: There will be parts of the playbook that will have quick, automatic reads designed for Toney. Even if he only has a 50-60% snap share he may still get 5-7 targets a week.