ADP Cold Shower: Sammy Watkins

Let’s play a little game.  Below we have 2 receivers, which one would you rather draft in a PPR redraft league?

Player A – 148 targets, 88 catches, 1507 yards and 11 TDs over the last 2 years

Player B – 228 targets, 172 catches, 2197 yards and 21 TDs over the last 2 years

 

Seems like a no-brainer right? Player B is obviously better (his identity will be revealed shortly)

But, let’s do another quick comparison-

 

Player A – 148 targets, 88 catches, 1507 yards and 11 TDs over the last 2 years

Player B – 297 targets, 204 catches, 2293 yards, and 8 TDs over the last 2 years

 

Player B again?  I’m not surprised…Last one I promise.

 

Player A – 148 targets, 88 catches, 1507 yards and 11 TDs over the last 2 years

Player B – 302 targets, 153 catches, 2283 yards and 20 TD’s over the last 2 years

 

Still Player B right?  Good call.

Player A is Sammy Watkins.  His ADP is currently higher on MFL or ESPN than our three Player B’s; who in order are: Doug Baldwin, Jarvis Landry, and Allen Robinson.   

When the Bills traded up to select Watkins in the first round of the 2014 draft, almost everyone agreed (myself included) that they just added the impact WR that they’ve been missing since Andre Reed retired.  

After a promising rookie campaign, it seems that Sammy just can’t stay on the field; he’s had hip labrum surgery and a fractured foot that required a screw to be inserted.  While these are not ACL injuries, it’s still a troubling trend that has already cost him 11 games in the last two years and his 5th year option with the Bills. It’s even more troubling when you find out that he was battling a hip issue during his rookie campaign as well.  Is the juice worth the squeeze?

There’s no denying Sammy’s talent and athleticism.  When he’s on the field he is very productive. If you took his numbers from the last 2 seasons and project it across 16 games, his stat line would be around 67/1125/8 (which in PPR is good for about 226 points).  Based on FantasyPros projections (May 24) that line makes him a WR2 still trailing Doug Baldwin, and Jarvis Landry but ahead of Allen Robinson. A 16 game projection like this is still dependant on one thing, his health.   

Currently, Watkins is being drafted between 34 and 44 which is the 3rd/4th round –  To me, that’s too high – I want a guy that has a much lower injury risk as one of my first 4 picks.  Here are some other players I would take ahead of him:

Jarvis Landry (ADP: 36 MFL : 38 ESPN) – A PPR Machine tied with Odell Beckham for most catches by a WR in first three years.

Doug Baldwin (ADP: 38 MFL : 37 ESPN) – Russell Wilson loves this guy and it’s reflected in his target numbers over the last 3 years (98, 103, 125) and his 75% catch rate over the last 2 years.  

Demaryius Thomas (ADP: 47 MFL : 30 ESPN) – How many guys go for at least 90/1000/5 with poor QB play?  Not many, he’s done it twice. (2015-2016)

To be clear – I’m not saying avoid him, he easily offers 1st round talent when he’s healthy.  I’m saying don’t make him a cornerstone of your team. The easiest road to championship glory is having guys who play every week and until he proves that he can, he should be drafted as a WR3.  .

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