Rashod Bateman, Baltimore: After being a secondary target during his rookie season, Bateman has the perfect opportunity to have a big year. He is the Boom for my Boom-Bust list.
The Ravens traded Marquise Brown and his 146 targets to Arizona. Plus, Devonta Freeman was not retained in the backfield, leaving another 42 targets up for grabs. This leaves plenty of room for a big season for Bateman.
Bateman proved he can produced when giving a heavy workload. In his four games with eight targets or more, he delivered 25 catches on 34 targets with 290 yards.
Plus, I forgot to mention quarterback Lamar Jackson is healthy heading into the season.
Christian Kirk, Jacksonville: Kirk is getting paid like a top 20 WR, but it doesn’t mean he can produce like one.
In his four seasons in the league, he has produced only four 100-yard receiving games, has averaged 4.25 touchdowns a season and never had a 1,000-yard season.
Another item against Kirk is Doug Pederson’s offenses. In his five seasons as the head coach in Philadelphia, Pederson’s offenses never had a top 20 WR in PPR as the offenses were more TE centric.
Plus, the Jaguars still have their top two targeted WRs from last season in Marvin Jones Jr. and Laviska Shenault. They also brought in TE Evan Engram and WR Zay Jones. A healthy Travis Etienne is also expected to be involved in the passing game, as well.
Targets may be limited for Jacksonville’s $18 million man.
Nico Collins, Houston: This is a very bullish call as I expect the Houston offense to be a surprise this season under second-year QB Davis Mills.
We know how steady Brandin Cooks is as a WR, but Collins has some upside as well. He had 15 of his 33 receptions in his final five games last season for 218 yards and his lone touchdown.
In Houston’s second preseason game, Collins played the whole first half with Mills. They connected on 4 of 6 passes for 48 yards and a touchdown.
And the Texans have a schedule that may require their passing game to be in full force. They play the AFC West in conference play and face the NFC East and Chicago in out of conference play.
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