As the fantasy football season draws near, it’s important to be prepared for those drafts. Using 2021 Seasonal fantasy football rankings is a good start but having projections handy can help you make those hard decisions between Los Angeles Rams wide receivers Robert Woods or Cooper Kupp when you’re on the clock.
Although projections can fluctuate throughout the offseason due to injuries, free agent signings, and other factors, determining the reasonable range of outcomes for players provides a strong foundation to attack your fantasy football drafts.
* The following projections are based on PPR settings with 6 pt touchdowns.
Quarterback / Matthew Stafford
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Matthew Stafford is really set up for a big season and big fantasy football season in this high-powered offense. Losing a key part of the rushing attack isn’t necessarily a big blow if the Rams decide to go with a short passing game featuring Woods and Kupp.
Reports out of Los Angeles Rams camp have been, for the most part, glowing. When I had the chance to attend Rams training camp, Stafford looked good in his passing drills and team scrimmage. The ball was coming out of his hands quickly and smoothly. The downside I see with Stafford is that he’s in a new system. This essentially keeps him out of my top 10 in projections but still safe QB1 play in the later rounds.
With an expanded 17-game regular season, it’s highly conceivable that a healthy Matthew Stafford posts over 4,000 passing yards and around 30 touchdowns. At QB12, I’ve projected Stafford at essentially his floor in 2021.
Running Back / Darrell Henderson
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Darrell Henderson has been practicing as the team’s unquestioned lead running back in the wake of Cam Akers’ season-ending Achilles injury. The Rams have also not entertained the thought of signing a veteran player for depth. Henderson has looked crisp in the receiving drills during training camp. It could be wheels up for Henderson in 2021 (at least for this season). The downside is that the team can sign another back at any time, especially if they’re competitive through the 17-game regular season.
The ideal scenario finds you drafting Darrell Henderson as your RB3 in fantasy football who has top 18-20 upside in PPR. Currently, even with the increased opportunity, he finds himself outside the top 25. However, Henderson gets a boost in PPR leagues due to his pass-catching upside. Even with the “starting role” in the Rams backfield, I don’t see Henderson cresting 1,000 yards on the ground although he will clear 1,000 with his receiving work.
— The Undroppables (@TheUndroppables) August 2, 2021
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The debate in fantasy football continues on whether you should draft Robert Woods or Cooper Kupp first. If they weren’t on the same team, arguably, they’d both be considered top-10 locks. As the undisputed co-alphas of the Los Angeles Rams pass-catchers, Woods and Kupp are both looking crisp in drills and developing much-needed chemistry with Matthew Stafford.
Woods and Kupp get a bump in PPR leagues due to the volume they will see and scoring opportunities. Now paired with a big-armed quarterback, Woods and Kupp should see bumps in their efficiency numbers and crossing over 1,000 receiving yards respectively. However, the addition of Jackson and (assumed) emergence of Jefferson put slight dampers to Woods and Kupp going nuclear.
Van Jefferson and Desean Jackson are just enough to be minor hits to the ceilings of Woods and Kupp. With that said, both secondary WRs are interesting picks in the late rounds of deeper leagues and much more palpable in best ball settings.
Tight End / Tyler Higbee
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Tyler Higbee is considered a post-hype fantasy football sleeper by many. Personally, I’ve never been a big fan of Higbee for fantasy purposes but as the 15th ranked tight end with top 10 upside at the position, sign me up. Gerald Everett has moved on to the division rival Seahawks, which should allow Higbee to secure nearly all of the tight end targets.
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