The Bengals were averaging 41.1 pass attempts/game before Joe Burrow tore his ACL. If that pace continued, they would’ve been the 2nd most pass heavy team last year, only behind Pittsburgh.
Among all NFL WRs with 100+ targets last year, Higgins was 19th in YPRR, ahead of a lot of big names like CeeDee Lamb, Amari Cooper, Mike Evans, and Diontae Johnson.
Among all 12 rookie WRs with 50+ targets, Higgins was 3rd in YPRR, only behind Justin Jefferson and Chase Claypool. With Burrow, he was up at 2.0 YPRR, which is a threshold for great future success when hit as a rookie – I have more on this on previous posts. YPRR numbers per Pro Football Focus.
Higgins has talent, and YPRR is one of the better indicators of future success at the WR position, especially when measuring as a rookie. He almost broke 1000 yards, and we definitely would’ve seen it happen if Burrow didn’t get hurt.
There is room for multiple WRs to be very fantasy relevant. Not just Tee Higgins and J’Marr Chase, but Tyler Boyd as well. I’ll be targeting the outside WRs – I just like the more valuable targets for the outside receiver – downfield, contested, end zone, etc. But there’s no doubt I’d draft Boyd at the right price.
Speaking of those more valuable targets, Higgins was 1st among all rookies in contested targets and catches with Burrow. J’Marr Chase isn’t going to be the only end zone target on the Bengals next year.
On what looks like a pass heavy offense once again, I’ll be aiming for Higgins at his dropping ADP; I can totally see Higgins drop to the 7th round or later because of the Bengals drafting J’Marr Chase. We’re going to be drafting him at his floor (WR3), with room for upside (WR2).