You’ll see Corey Davis Blossom and Josh Gordon Star in 2018
Although it is Super Bowl week, Fantasy Football never sleeps. The NFL is always changing, as well as players’ fantasy values are with every move made in the offseason. Let’s take a look at some recent moves around the league and what their Fantasy impact is going to be.
Giants name Pat Shurmur Head Coach
Following the Vikings blowout loss to the Eagles in the NFC Championship Game, the Giants wasted no time in closing in on Pat Shurmur. The former Vikings offensive coordinator is expected to call his own plays in New York. In Shurmur’s past, we have seen a very balanced approach in his play calling. We have seen him do wonders with quarterbacks such as Nick Foles, Sam Bradford, and Case Keenum. It will be interesting to see what his plans are moving forward, as the Giants hold the second overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft. With a bottom 10 rushing offense in the league, many believe that the Giants will add a running back in the offseason.
Shurmur dials up tons of quick hit passes which create opportunities for receivers to make a play after the catch. Odell Beckham Jr will benefit most from this, as he is dangerous whenever the ball is in his hands. I believe Shurmur’s offense gives OBJ a 100-catch floor in 2018 and he should be drafted in the front half of the first round again. The next beneficiaries in this Giants offense would be Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram. We saw flashes from both players in 2017 but there was a lack of consistency. With Odell back in the picture, this will be a much different offense. Shepard will do most of his work out of the slot and have a role similar to Adam Thielen’s, so he has upside for next season. Shepard could be drafted as high as the seventh round heading into next season. Evan Engram becomes very intriguing in the play action passing game and will also see some work split out wide. Engram has as much upside as any tight end in the league and could break out even more under Shurmur in 2018.
— Newsday Sports (@NewsdaySports) January 31, 2018
Offseason outlook for Jerick McKinnon
Minnesota Vikings running back and impending free agent Jerick McKinnon will be on many team’s radars heading into the 2018 season. With Dalvin Cook and Latavius Murray already locked into their roles in the Minnesota backfield, McKinnon is expected to walk. Given the right situation, Jerick McKinnon could be a viable fantasy option. With his upside in the receiving game, McKinnon could be a low-end RB2 in PPR formats, given the right situation. Some good fits for McKinnon include Indianapolis, Detroit, and Tampa Bay. The Giants have also been mentioned.
In just two games this postseason, he hauled in 17 receptions on 21 targets. To go with a larger sample size, McKinnon finished the 2017 season with 51 receptions in his time share with Latavius Murray, which was the 14th best amongst running backs. I expect him to go into a backfield by committee wherever he does end up signing, however he will still remain a solid option in PPR leagues.
Corey Davis on the rise
Heading into his sophomore season, Corey Davis is a name that is trending upward. He showed flashes of his upside late in the season. In his two postseason games, he recorded a total of nine receptions for just under 100 yards and two touchdowns. The rookie had his struggles throughout the season but looked as if he was able to figure it out late. I believe Davis carries an eight touchdown and 950 yard floor into next season as his confidence continues to grow.
With a new coaching staff in Tennessee, Davis should be the top option in the offense moving forward. Davis will have an expanded role in this offense as it is very weak receiving corps in Tennessee. I feel as if many will be hesitant before pulling the trigger on drafting him because the numbers were not there last year. This is a young offense that is up and coming with Matt LaFleur as a new coordinator and Davis should soon be the face of it.
Browns hire Todd Haley as new Offensive Coordinator
Names were thrown around everywhere on who would become the Browns’ new offensive coordinator.The void was finally filled as Todd Haley took the reins in Cleveland. With skill players such as Duke Johnson Jr., Josh Gordon Corey Coleman, Rashard Higgins, and David Njoku, the Browns are not far from having an explosive offense. Even with a question mark at quarterback, I would still expect to see the same type of offense we have seen from Todd Haley in the past: boring. I do find Duke Johnson Jr. as the biggest beneficiary to this move. He is no Le’Veon Bell, but he sure can catch the football. I expect Johnson to have a floor of 75 receptions in 2018 and he should have an expanded role in the offense as a whole. If the Browns decide to move on from Crowell, it is going to be a lot of Duke Johnson in 2018. He has the upside of an RB2 in PPR formats and should be taken in the middle rounds of drafts.
In the receiving game, the spotlight is mainly on Josh Gordon. If Cleveland decides to bring him back, the sky is the limit. I don’t care who the quarterback is, the man is a freak. Averaging over 18 YPC in limited action last season, Gordon showed that his talent is still there. Given solid quarterback play in 2018, whomever it may be, I don’t think it is a stretch to see Gordon post similar numbers to what he did in 2013. Arguably the most talented wide receiver in the game, Josh Gordon will have the opportunity to revive the Cleveland Browns offense in 2018. Even if Haley’s offense does not excite us overall, Gordon will.
Featured Image: (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)