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Author: Ben Heisler
Many fantasy fans are high on Joe Burrow, so wouldn’t that mean his weapons will also fare well? SI Fantasy guru Ben Heisler scratches the Tyler Boyd itch that everyone seems to be ignoring.
It’s never too early to start your fantasy football research, and we here at SI Fantasy want to provide you with the best information possible heading into your drafts. Our “Draft or Pass” video series takes a closer look at a fantasy player that will be debated often leading up to fantasy drafts. Are our hosts targeting this player specifically? Are they avoiding him entirely?
Today’s video focuses on Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd.
Tyler Boyd Draft or Pass at current ADP: 74 (WR31)
There appears to be a “Void for Boyd” in our collective fantasy hearts.
We’ve seen a sample size for Boyd over the last two seasons to appreciate his value: back-to-back 1,000 receiving yards, 12 touchdowns, and 258 targets thrown his way, mostly from below-average quarterbacks like Andy Dalton, to the depths of the unknown in Ryan Finley and Jeff Driskel.
So when the Bengals land the number one pick in the draft, use it on Joe Burrow, who set the all-time single-season touchdown record for Division I college football in 2019, Boyd’s ADP falls instead of rises?
In the immortal words of Taylor Twellman: “WHAT ARE WE DOING?“
In 2019, Boyd finished eighth in receptions with 90, 22nd in receiving yards, and just outside the Top 20 in touchdowns with five.
With the addition of Burrow, Boyd should thrive as the primary slot receiver. Justin Jefferson, who played extensively in that role at LSU, saw a 21.5% target share along with catching 111 receptions for 1,540 yards. Last year, Boyd lined up approximately 61% of his routes from the slot position in Cincinnati.
Despite Boyd’s emergence, some think he’s still underappreciated. NFL Network analytics expert Cynthia Frelund says Boyd deserves recognition for his performance over the past few years.
“There weren’t many bright spots in the Bengals’ offense last season (Joe Mixon was one of the few), but it seems Boyd isn’t getting the respect he deserves,” Frelund wrote. “He ranked sixth in the NFL last season with 661 receiving yards from the slot, per Next Gen Stats. When you add in the context of Cincinnati’s extremely subpar offensive line and A.J. Green’s season-long absence, Boyd’s impact starts to come into focus.”
In a 12-team draft, Boyd’s ADP of 74 lands him as the projected second pick in the seventh round of your fantasy league. Boyd’s 2019 finish was good for WR-18, 13 spots higher than where he’s being drafted this year. A.J. Green may be back to claim targets, and Tee Higgins was brought in as the first pick in the second round, but none pose a threat to Boyd’s role in the slot.
It’s time to invite Boyd into your fantasy hearts, friends. Time to let Boyd open the door.
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Author: Ben Heisler