“In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is Freedom, in water there is bacteria.”
― Benjamin Franklin
Happy Birthday America! We live in the land where freedom rings daily! However, this is also the same land where you have the freedom to make poor decisions, just ask Kareem Hunt. Don’t let the freedom of poor decision-making bite you! Help us help you by listening to the podcast and reading these articles, so you don’t make poor decisions at your draft!
We’ve hit on traditions, busts, values, and rookie wide receivers already, but now we are going to dive into more of the specifics for some fantasy situations. Currently, a big question lingering around the NFL surround the Chiefs and Tyrek Hill. Personally, I won’t be owning any shares of Hill regardless of the suspension, but that isn’t what this article is about. Will Mahomes and the Chiefs be able to roll out an elite offense without Hill? Who will step up to fill Hill’s shoes if he is suspended?
Let’s start by looking at last year and how the Chiefs fared with Hill on the field. The first big hit that jumps out to me is that Hill accounted for 84 of the 565 points the Chiefs put up during the regular season. His absence will leave a huge void not only for the offense, but for the return game as well. What makes this even more concerning is that there is no lock for anyone to fill Hill’s shoes while he is out. The only person close enough to Hill’s speed is in rookie wide receiver Mecole Hardman. Hardman is talented, but it typically takes rookie wide receivers time to adjust to the NFL. Hardman could be great, but any adjustment period will make it difficult for Mahomes and the offense to be as productive as they were last year.
Now let’s look at targets! During the regular season Mahomes attempted 580 pass attempts. Hill accounted for 137 of those targets, bringing in 87 of them for 12 receiving touchdowns. For anyone that had to cheat off the smart kid in math class, that’s around 23.6% of targets that went Hill’s way, to go along with 24% of Mahomes’ touchdown passes. Hoping for Travis Kelce, Sammy Watkins, Demarcus Robinson, and Mecole Hardman to be there to replace this production is wishful thinking at best. I’m not saying that Mahomes will be a bust, but when you look at the amount of production the team loses with Hill out, I don’t see him passing for 50 touchdowns this season.
Say Hill gets slapped with a 4-6 game suspension, does this move Kelce into the first-round conversation? I don’t have a problem with that, but it would have to be at the back end for sure. Mahomes currently has an ADP in the middle of the 3rd round. That is some high draft capital for a quarterback in that spot if you play in a one quarterback league. I do think there will be an adjustment period for Hardman and I’m not depending on him to be a starter from day one. I do love the possible value that Robinson holds as he is going ridiculously late in drafts. Sammy Watkins sits with an ADP in the 6th round, but I look for that to skyrocket if Hill is suspended. I’m not a Watkins believer so if his ADP moves any higher than the 5th, it’s a hard pass for me.
So, the final question is what to do with Hill. Where is it safe to draft this guy? His ADP sits in the middle of the 4th round and he is going before guys like Cooks, Kupp, Ridley, and Godwin. It boils down to the makeup of your team, and if you can take the hit of drafting Hill in the 4th, he could also be a league winner. I traditionally play in a ten-team league and this is a little high for me. If a suspension does come out, I expect his ADP to fall so in the end there could be value to be had, but I’d rather use the draft spot for a guy I know will be playing. If you really can’t use your freedom to decide if you should draft Hill, just give our host Matt Higgins a call and ask him if it paid off when he drafted Lev Bell first overall last season😊