DeAndre Hopkins landed in a good spot with his trade from Houston to Arizona, but it might not be the best destination for his Fantasy value. He might not be as good with the Cardinals as he's been with the Texans, and that's why he's here as the lead for Busts 2.0.
It's hard to put Hopkins on a bust list. We're talking about a player who has been a top-five PPR receiver for each of the past three seasons and four of the past five years. He's a star.
Now, I don't expect him to perform like he did in 2016, when he was ruined by Brock Osweiler and averaged just 12.3 PPR points per game. But I am worried about him averaging at least 18.0 PPR points per game, which he's done in 2015 and 2017-19. I don't expect that to happen with the Cardinals, either.
My biggest concern for Hopkins is his target share. He's had at least 150 targets in each of the past five seasons. And in the past two years with Deshaun Watson, Hopkins has received at least 30 percent of the targets in his direction.
In looking at the Cardinals last year, their top two receivers were Larry Fitzgerald and Christian Kirk. Fitzgerald led the team with 109 targets, and Kirk was right behind at 108, although he missed three games due to an ankle injury.
Those two remain in Arizona, and although their targets should decline with Hopkins on the roster, it might not be by much. You also have to factor in how much more guys like KeeSean Johnson (42 targets in 2019) and Andy Isabella (13 targets) contribute this season. And the running backs will be involved in the passing game, with David Johnson, Kenyan Drake and Chase Edmonds combining for 103 targets last year.
So now the question becomes if Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray will be throwing more after he attempted 542 passes as a rookie in 2019. Our projections at CBS Sports have him at 555 attempts, which seems realistic. For Hopkins to maintain his 30 percent share of the targets, he'll need 166 this season from Murray.
That would be the third-most targets of Hopkins' career (he had 192 in 2015 and 175 in 2017) and would have been the second-most targets in 2019 in the NFL (Michael Thomas had 185 and no one else topped 160). That could happen, or Hopkins could just be more successful with fewer targets.
In his three best seasons (2015, 2017 and 2018), he had at least 11 touchdowns after dropping to seven last year. He could get back to double digits in scores, although Fitzgerald and Kirk tied for the team lead in receiving touchdowns in 2019 with four.
I think you're starting to see the pattern here for Hopkins. Targets could be a problem. Touchdowns could be a problem. We know he catches everything -- he has just two drops in the past two seasons and has caught at least 69 percent of his passes over that span -- but you don't get Fantasy points for that stat.
The Cardinals also might run the ball more than you expect. While they averaged 24.8 rushing attempts per game last season, which was tied for 18th in the NFL, that number increased to 30.7 over the final three games of the year -- when Drake was rolling and Arizona won two of those outings.
I like Hopkins a lot. He's helped me win many Fantasy titles. But he's no longer a first-round pick in the majority of leagues. He's no longer ranked as a top -five Fantasy receiver now that he's with the Cardinals.
NYJ N.Y. Jets • #8
Age: 40 • Experience: 19 yrs.
Rodgers didn't have a good season in 2019, but he did finish as the No. 7 quarterback in total points and No. 10 in points per game for quarterbacks who made at least 10 starts. But Rodgers should be considered a borderline Fantasy starter at best this season, and he's only worth drafting with a late-round pick. He only had six games last season with at least 20 Fantasy points, and this offseason has been a nightmare for him when it comes to personnel. Green Bay lost right tackle Bryan Bulaga and tight end Jimmy Graham, although thatlosing Graham might be considered an upgrade, especially if Jace Sternberger steps up as a sophomore. More importantly, no receiver of significance was added in free agency or the NFL Draft. Instead, the Packers added another quarterback in Jordan Love in Round 1 and a third-string running back in A.J. Dillon in Round 2. The latter selection suggests Green Bay wants to run the ball more with Dillon, Aaron Jones and Jamaaal Williams. And what happens if Davante Adams gets hurt again likeas he did last year? Rodgers could still finish as a No. 1 Fantasy quarterback again, but his upside feels capped. He's someone to settle for, instead of target, on Draft Day.
It might seem like I'm picking on the Packers, but their offseason hasn't helped guys like Rodgers or Jones. The addition of Dillon should hurt Jones, who was awesome in 2019 when he tied Christian McCaffey for the NFL lead in total touchdowns with 19. He also set career highs in attempts (236), rushing yards (1,084), receptions (49) and receiving yards (474). Dillon could impact Jones' rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns. And the bulk of his receiving stats came during the four games when Adams was out with a toe injury from Weeks 5-8, with Jones catching 22 passes for 281 yards and all three of his receiving touchdowns over that span. Jamaal Williams could also remain a factor, and Jones could find himself in a brutal timeshare. I expect him to be Green Bay's best running back by far, but the earliest I'm drafting him is Round 3 in all leagues.
BUF Buffalo • #7
Age: 28 • Experience: 7 yrs.
I've tried hard to defend Fournette as a quality Fantasy option, but there's too much evidence mounting against him this offseason to justify drafting him in the first three rounds. The Jaguars tried to trade him but likely couldn't find any takers for the right price. They declined his fifth-year option, meaning this is almost certainly his final year in Jacksonville. They added a pass-catching running back in Chris Thompson, who has a history with new offensive coordinator Jay Gruden. The one scenario that could benefit Fournette is if the Jaguars try to run him into the ground before sending him packing, but it doesn't seem like there's a lot of trust in him to do that. We could see more of Ryquell Armstead than expected, making him a sleeper. Fournette is coming off a career season in games played (15), rushing yards (1,152), receptions (76) and receiving yards (522), but he scored just three touchdowns. I expect his touchdowns to rise, but his receptions should plummet with Thompson there. Fournette can still be a starting running back in all leagues, but the earliest you should draft him is Round 4.
Le'Veon Bell RB
TB Tampa Bay • #6
Age: 31 • Experience: 8 yrs.
Bell was a bust in 2019, and I'm not sure things will get much better this year. While the Jets invested a lot in their offensive line, especially with Mekhi Becton, Conner McGovern and Alex Lewis, Bell is likely going to lose some of the 311 touches he had from last year to Frank Gore and La'Mical Perine. And Bell just had his worst average in the NFL at 14.3 PPR points per game, as well as a career-low 3.2 yards per carry. He's still someone to draft as a No. 2 running back in all leagues, but the earliest I would draft him is Round 4, even in PPR. Let someone else deal with the headache of Adam Gase screwing with Bell's touches because of Gore or Perine. It will happen, and you could regret drafting Bell with a pick in the top 40 overall.
Mark Ingram RB
NO New Orleans • #5
Age: 33 • Experience: 13 yrs.
Ingram should still have a solid season in 2020, but you could be chasing his production from last year if you draft him too soon. That means look for him at the earliest in Round 5 in non-PPR leagues and Round 6 in PPR. I still expect him to get the most touches in Baltimore's backfield this year, but rookie J.K. Dobbins will likely play a prominent role. And if Gus Edwards or Justice Hill also get work, Ingram's production could really suffer. He was the No. 11 PPR running back last year, and most of his success was as a result of scoring 15 total touchdowns. That includes five receiving scores, which happened on just 26 catches. That's not realistic to repeat. Ingram also will be 31 this year, and the Ravens would likely want him fresh for a potential playoff run after he hurt his calf in Week 16 last year. He's still a low-end No. 2 running back in all leagues, but his arrow is likely pointing down after his quality season in 2019.
HOU Houston • #26
Age: 26 • Experience: 5 yrs.
I was excited for Singletary following last season, but the Bills selecting Zack Moss in Round 3 of the NFL Draft was a bad sign, especially with what the team said about Moss and his role. Buffalo general manager Brandon Beane said Moss could play on third downs, but the Bills also envisioned Moss as someone who can play on early downs and be a goal-line runner. Beane compared Moss to Frank Gore, who dominated goal-line work in 2019 compared to Singletary. Gore had 18 carries inside the 10-yard line last year and 11 inside the 5-yard line. By comparison, Singletary had three carries inside the 10-yard line and two inside the 5-yard line, which is why he scored just two rushing touchdowns on the season. Josh Allen also led all quarterbacks with nine rushing touchdowns, which is a problem for Singletary and Moss. Singletary is capable of being a good receiver out of the backfield and had six games with at least three catches. But he averaged just 2.4 receptions for the year. I don't see Singletary having a high ceiling if Moss is healthy, which is why he's a low-end starting option at best in all leagues. The earliest I would draft Singletary is Round 6.
You can't blame the Cowboys for selecting rookie receiver CeeDee Lamb at No. 17 overall in the NFL Draft. He's an elite talent, and he immediately makes their team better. After all, their No. 3 wide receiver before the NFL Draft was likely Cedrick Wilson. But Dallas already had two standout receivers in Cooper -- who got a five-year, $100 million contract extension this offseason, including $60 million guaranteed -- and Michael Gallup, and now both could suffer with Lamb on the roster. I still like Cooper and Gallup better than Lamb as Fantasy receivers, but I was drafting Cooper toward the end of Round 2 before Lamb came to Dallas. Now, the earliest I would draft Cooper is Round 4 in non-PPR leagues and late Round 3 in PPR. While the Cowboys do have 166 targets available for Lamb with Randall Cobb and Jason Witten gone, Blake Jarwin will take a good portion of that. I can see Lamb hurting Cooper enough to drop him down a round or two with his production, and his Fantasy value is on the decline.
BAL Baltimore • #3
Age: 31 • Experience: 9 yrs.
Beckham posted a workout video in May that his recovery from January abdomen surgery is going well. He's expected to be ready for the start of the season, and that's good news. But I'm not ready to buy back in on Beckham being a top-tier Fantasy option again. He struggled in 2019 with the Browns and again battled injuries. While he didn't miss time, he had a career-low 64.7 yards per game. And he scored just four touchdowns. The Browns added another significant weapon on offense with Austin Hooper, and new coach Kevin Stefanski wants to run the ball given the offense he oversaw in Minnesota. Jarvis Landry (hip) also is expected to be fine this year, meaning Beckham has plenty of teammates who also want the ball, including Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt and David Njoku. I'm fine with Beckham in Round 4 in all leagues, but I expect most Fantasy managers will reach for him in Round 3. That could be a pick you regret in 2020.
DEN Denver • #14
Age: 28 • Experience: 6 yrs.
Like Cooper, Sutton was impacted by the NFL Draft in a negative way. But unlike Cooper, Sutton got a lot more company when the Broncos drafted a receiver with each of their first two selections in Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler. Sutton was by far and away the best receiver in Denver last season. He had 124 targets for 72 catches, 1,112 yards and six touchdowns. The second-best numbers in those categories were 66 targets, 43 catches, 562 yards and three touchdowns. Jeudy can challenge Sutton to be the No. 1 receiver for the Broncos this year. And Sutton didn't post great numbers with Lock -- he averaged 12.0 PPR points in five starts with Lock compared to 14.1 PPR points in 11 starts with Joe Flacco and Brandon Allen -- but that's a connection that should be fine. Still, it's hard to view Sutton as a must-start Fantasy receiver in all leagues. I'd prefer him as a high-end No. 3 option, and the earliest I would draft him is Round 5.
A.J. Green WR
ARI Arizona • #18
Age: 35 • Experience: 12 yrs.
I'm likely not buying back in on Green this season, even though he's expected to return from sitting out in 2019 with an ankle injury. He'll be 32 in July, he hasn't played with quarterback Joe Burrow or for coach Zac Taylor, and both of those could be a problem. Cincinnati also added another receiver in rookie Tee Higgins, who could take away targets, as well as Tyler Boyd, John Ross and Joe Mixon. And Mixon should be the focal point of this offense. Green also has played more than 10 games just once since 2015, missing seven games in 2018 and then the entire year last season. He might be worth the risk in Round 5 in PPR and Round 6 in non-PPR leagues, but I only want him as a No. 3 receiver this year. It's hard to expect him to recapture his glory days with the new faces in Cincinnati, as well as staying on the field for a full campaign.
TB Tampa Bay • #87
Age: 34 • Experience: 12 yrs.
I'm excited that Gronkowski is back in the NFL. It's more fun when he's playing. And it's great that he was able to reunite with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay. But while Gronkowski has the greatest rapport with Brady of anyone on the Buccaneers, this is the most talent he's ever had the share the field with in Chris Godwin and Mike Evans. And the last time we saw Gronkowski in 2018 with the Patriots, he was mediocre at best, catching 47 passes for 682 yards and three touchdowns on 72 targets. He averaged just 10.1 PPR points per game that season, which was his worst year since his rookie campaign in 2010. He'll be 31 when the season starts, and he hasn't played a full season since 2011, although he said he feels great following a year off. I have Gronkowski ranked as a top-10 Fantasy tight end, but that feels too high. The earliest I would draft him is Round 8 in all leagues, but I'm not confident in him producing at a high level.
Hooper was a star in 2019 with the Falcons, and he was rewarded with a four-year, $44 million contract, including $23 million guaranteed, by the Browns. He's now the highest-paid tight end in the NFL. If he plays like he did last year in Atlanta, when he was the No. 3 PPR tight end at 14.7 points per game (behind only George Kittle and Travis Kelce), then the money would be worth it. But I'm expecting a downturn in production in Cleveland. The Falcons led the NFL in pass attempts last season with 684, while the Browns were at No. 19 at 539. It's doubtful Baker Mayfield's attempts rise under new coach Kevin Stefanski, who was the offensive coordinator of the Vikings, and they were No. 30 in pass attempts at 466. Hooper also shares the field with standout players in Beckham, Landry, Chubb and Hunt, and Njoku, the No. 2 tight end, will also be a factor. Hooper still thrived on the same field with Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley, but Matt Ryan was clearly better than Mayfield. I would only settle for Hooper this season with a mid-round pick as a low-end starting option.
More Breakouts from the Fantasy Football Today crew
With the exception of Ronald Jones and Ameer Abdullah, nearly every running back drafted in the second round over the past five years has played at least a solid role for their new team. Either A.J. Dillon is another sad rookie exception, or Aaron Jones won't have quite as many chances to touch the ball or score as he has previously. Round 2 is too soon for him.
NE New England • #7
Age: 27 • Experience: 7 yrs.
There's no doubting Smith-Schuster's talent, but the Steelers added Eric Ebron and Chase Claypool and have second-year wideout Diontae Johnson ready for a breakout. They also have a total question mark at quarterback with Ben Roethlisberger coming back from elbow surgery. Suddenly, Smith-Schuster's upside is cloudy, making him a risky top-24 pick.
CLE Cleveland • #4
Age: 28 • Experience: 7 yrs.
I'll still take Watson to be my starter, but it has to be at the right point on Draft Day. DeAndre Hopkins was responsible for pretty much 30% of Watson's career totals. Given their injuries and inconsistencies, it's hard to believe Brandin Cooks or Will Fuller will pick up much of that slack. Don't take Watson until at least Round 7.
BAL Baltimore • #8
Age: 26 • Experience: 6 yrs.
I love Lamar Jackson. I think he's awesome. But he's going to be drafted in the first round of most Fantasy leagues, just like Patrick Mahomes was in 2019. Don't make the same mistake again.
Age: 24 • Experience: 4 yrs.
It's not like Kerryon Johnson is terrible, he just hasn't held up to a feature role yet. A timeshare should be the expectation in Detroit and that is not a run offense that is good enough to support a timeshare. Swift is best served as a mid-range flex with weekly upside. Instead, he'll be drafted like a top-25 back.
Hooper went from a high volume team short on targets to what I expect to be a run-first team with too many mouths to feed. Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry will hog at least 50% of the targets and Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt will take a chunk as well. If the Browns defense is good, I'm not sure Hooper will see even 80 targets in 2020.
MIA Miami • #31
Age: 31 • Experience: 9 yrs.
Mostert is a great athlete and in line to lead a powerful rushing attack, but peel back any layers beyond that and his profile gets questionable. A lack of receiving work limits his weekly ceiling, but we also can't project him as a lead back for 16 games when the 49ers went through backs like hotcakes in 2019. Oh, and Mostert had almost no production prior to his age-27 season last year. Now being drafted in a range where legitimate difference-making receivers are available, Mostert is the poster boy for the overreaction to a lack of stable running back options in 2020 drafts.
BAL Baltimore • #33
Age: 30 • Experience: 9 yrs.
I've long been a fan of Gordon, but I have a hard time paying a third-round price for a 27-year-old back who has never been a particularly efficient runner joining a crowded backfield in an offense that will throw to backs at a lower clip and generate fewer scoring chances. Gordon should play on passing downs and he'll likely be a reasonable option, but this feels like paying up for yesterday's production.
I have Cooper on a couple of dynasty teams, so it brings me no pleasure to point out that the Cowboys drafted arguably the best receiver in the 2020 class and Cooper is still going in the same range he was pre-draft. Michael Gallup is still there, by the way — he's the guy who had more targets and yards per game than Cooper last year. Cooper's a fantastic talent but I'd rather play this passing game through Gallup or CeeDee Lamb.
So what Fantasy football busts should you avoid in your draft draft? And which WR1 candidate can you wait on until late? Visit SportsLine now to get Fantasy Football cheat sheets from the model that was all over Derrick Henry's huge season, and find out.