A fantasy draft is all about obtaining the most value with each selection. There is value available throughout a draft, and grabbing it is one of the most important keys to a successful fantasy team. In an attempt to point out this value, we asked our staff to look through the Top 150 and identify players that should outperform their draft position.
Players Receiving 4 Votes
Brandin Cooks, Houston
Andrew Davenport: Cooks has somehow earned the reputation as having injury concerns coming into 2020. This despite having played all 16 games from 2015 to 2018 (four seasons), and missing just two games last year. While concussion history is never something to take lightly, that risk is more than accounted for in his current ADP. Deshaun Watson is going to have a wide receiver corps that is made up of several guys with checkered injury histories. Randall Cobb hasn't played a full season since 2015, and Will Fuller V is...Will Fuller V and has yet to play a full 16 game season in his career. Fading Watson's possible top target seems like an odd thing to be happening but it's what fantasy drafters are doing. Jump on Cooks later in drafts and his upside stretches into the Top 15 at the position.
Andy Hicks: Brandin Cooks is a man of mystery. This will be his fourth team in five years. That usually spells the end of the career or hard to control troublemaker. In the case of Cooks, he gets traded for high draft picks every time. Outside 2020 production isn’t a problem either. The 2020 season can be clearly defined as pre concussion production and post-concussion production. Before his week five knock he was on track to record his usual bottom end WR1 production from 2015-2018. Think Will Fuller V, Kenny Stills, or Randall Cobb are a threat? Fuller has missed 22 games in four years and is inconsistent, Stills is a classic WR3 and Cobb hasn’t been a fantasy starter since 2015. Cooks is the main guy here and his current draft price is all value and little downside.
Chad Parsons: Cooks is coming off a lost year with career lows in targets, receptions, and touchdowns. It was the first time Cooks finished outside the top-24 in PPR PPG in the NFL. Cooks has new life (again) with a team change, traded to Houston. Cooks is paired with yet another strong quarterback in his career with Deshaun Watson. Without DeAndre Hopkins, Cooks has a golden opportunity to be the unquestioned WR1 for a top quarterback where top-8 quarterbacks in fantasy (likely status for Watson) produce a top-24 PPR option for their No.1 receiver 89% of the time historically and a top-12 option 58% of the time. The average finish is WR13. Cooks is a glaring target player in 2020.
Jason Wood: Will Fuller V being drafted before Brandin Cooks is mystifying and provides one of the best value arbitrage opportunities at any position. Fuller is the incumbent, but he's never been the No. 1 receiver in Houston; he's a very talented one-dimensional player. When healthy, he's an elite deep threat but Cooks is the better player in every other respect. He's a far better route runner, understands how to find the open spaces in zone defenses, has better hands, and has been the more productive player in spite of continually learning new playbooks and building chemistry with new quarterbacks. Cooks' down 2019 was the anomaly in an otherwise stellar career, and he steps into DeAndre Hopkins' 180-200 target vacuum.
Robert Woods, LA Rams
Andrew Davenport: It seems like last year at this time everyone was talking about Woods and how he wasn't getting enough respect where he was being selected in drafts. Fast forward to 2020 and it's happening again, yet his ADP has failed to correct itself yet again. The only thing keeping Woods from being more popular in drafts is the paltry two receiving touchdowns he recorded in 2019 and that has fostered an unconscious bias that ignores some truly elite production from Woods elsewhere. Last season he played in only 15 games but still managed 90 receptions and 1,134 yards receiving. While he's never been a huge touchdown producer, his 140 targets show that his floor is rock solid (131 targets in 2018) and the touchdowns should go back up in the 5-7 range. The fact that Brandin Cooks is no longer in town also points to the fact that there won't be a shortage of opportunities for Woods to catch another 90 passes and 1,100 yards. At his current ADP, all it takes is a few more touchdowns for his price to be a great deal on draft day.
Bob Henry: Woods should continue to be a featured weapon with a heavy dose of targets and positive touchdown regression after finding the end zone just three times last year despite touching the football 107 times. The Rams should continue to play at higher than average pace, armed with Sean McVay’s creative play-calling, and Woods was featured heavily in the second half of the season as the offense turned to more 12 personnel. Woods has two straight years with 130+ targets and he’s one of my favorite receivers to snap up as my second receivers because he can legitimately finish as high as the top 10, with his current ADP much closer to his floor.
Chad Parsons: Woods has been a top-20 receiver for three straight seasons in points-per-game, including a career-high WR11 finish in 2019. The Rams' passing game is more streamlined with Brandin Cooks traded to Houston, leaving Woods and Cooper Kupp notably at wide receiver. The floor of targets is high for Woods. Plus, Woods' 2.2% touchdown rate in 2019 is in the strong regression bucket to add multiple touchdowns to his tally in 2020. The last time Woods was below 5% in touchdown rate (2016), he jumped 7% the following season.
Jason Wood: Robert Woods only scored two receiving touchdowns last year, which is driving down his value. Touchdown production is volatile and hard to predict. Generally speaking, full-time players regress back toward a mean and it's smarter to invest in players coming off low touchdown seasons than overvaluing ones coming off high touchdown tallies. Aside from the obvious positive touchdown regression looming, Woods enters the season Jared Goff's unquestioned No. 1 thanks to Brandin Cooks' trade. Cooper Kupp will have a large role, too, but he's proven suited mainly for the slot.
Players Receiving 3 Votes
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