Football Outsiders on the Minnesota Vikings receivers
01-03-2019, 10:28 AM,
Football Outsiders on the Minnesota Vikings receivers
We conclude the offensive portion of our Minnesota Vikings preview with Scott Kacsmar of Football Outsiders Cheap Linval Joseph Jersey , celebrating the release of the Football Outsiders 2018 Almanac. Since we’ve talked about the quarterback position and the offensive line, we’re going to take a look now at the wide receiver corps. We know that the Vikings’ receivers have had a great deal of praise heaped upon them since last season, and with good reason. They may have the best 1-2 receiver punch in the league, and the battle for spots behind them this offseason has been one of the best battles of camp thus far.So, what does Scott think about the Vikings’ receivers and where their best fit in the offense is? Let’s find out.Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs have developed into what might be the best 1-2 wide receiver tandem in the NFL. From what you’ve seen from them, is there any reason to fear that they might be in for a regression even with what (in theory) should be an upgrade at quarterback?It’s interesting to see the disparity between Diggs and Thielen when it comes to the number of targets that each had from the slot. We’ve seen that both of them are talented and versatile enough to be successful in either role, whether it’s in the slot or out wide, but it would appear that Diggs is much more successful from the slot than Thielen is.It makes sense when you look at Diggs’ traits. He possesses such great quickness and route-running ability that if he lines up off the line of scrimmage where a defensive back can’t get an initial jam on him, he could well be totally uncoverable. . .I think that’s a word, despite what my spell checker tells me.When Kacsmar talks about the Vikings’ two primary options as the #3 receiver. . .or, at least, the guys that were the primary options when I first submitted these questions. . .they both offer quite different skill sets. Treadwell, as he mentions has just about no slot value and is pretty much exclusively an outside receiver, while Wright likely wouldn’t offer much on the outside and should be used primarily in the slot.Of course, this doesn’t take players like Brandon Zylstra (who will make his preseason debut on Friday), Cayleb Jones, Stacy Coley, or any of the other receivers that are fighting for spots. Whoever comprises the rest of the wide receiver depth chart behind Diggs and Thielen will certainly have earned their spots and should find themselves as the recipient of quite a few targets.We’ve got two more questions that we’ve thrown Scott Kacsmar’s way about the Vikings Cheap Laquon Treadwell Jersey , and they both concern the Minnesota defense (though nothing about new acquisition George Iloka, who was not a part of the equation when I sent my questions in). Stay tuned tomorrow to find out the question and answer, and check out the Football Outsiders 2018 Almanac if you’re so inclined.Where the Vikings are landing in Fantasy Drafts Draft season is in full swing! Some of you have completed drafts, others have drafts coming up. Nonetheless, many of us will make the homer picks out of respect for the Vikings, along with the fact that they could be quite good. This is where the main guys have been going so far based on my 3 drafted teams so far, and over 50 mocks. The format here is 12 team, .5 PPR. QB, RB, RB, WR, WR, TE, Flex, D/St, KDalvin Cook: Round 1, pick 11.I’ve seen him go as high as 6, and as low as 18. He’s going top 10 because many view him as a special talent , and running backs are very much a premium asset. He also is a very good pass catcher, pushing him higher up many people’s boards. The other side of the equation presents three different things. First, many fantasy owners are not fully convinced he will be good as new or better following his ACL injury. Second, the Vikings offensive line presents the team’s largest question mark, with inexperience, and a straight up lack of talent. Finally, Latavius Murray looked very good in the preseason minus the two fumbles vs. Jacksonville. Projection: 1,833 total yards from scrimmage, 60 catches, 12 total touchdowns.Adam Thielen: Round 3, pick 4Stefon Diggs: Round 3, pick 5The only reason he is above Diggs in most drafts is because his overall stats were higher in 2017, even though they were very similar in FPPG. The interesting bit here is that Diggs has seemingly had better chemistry with Cousins in preseason than Thielen. However, Thielen has proven to be a bit more durable, as Diggs has yet to complete a 16 game regular season in his career. Both wide receivers were among the best in the league in contested catch rate according to Pro Football Focus, with Diggs at the top for the 2017 season. What’s interesting as well is how often opposing team’s lined up their top corner’s on Thielen as much, if not more than Diggs. Marshon Lattimore matched up with Thielen almost the entire NFC Divisional Playoff Game. Will that be the case all season? Not likely, but double covering both players is not a feasible option , so one or the other will get better looks each week. Both are relatively safe picks, and if both are available upon an owner’s pick, decide between the following: Diggs play ability vs. Thielen’s volume.Projection for Thielen: 73 catches, 1,151 yards, 7 touchdownsProjection for Diggs: 89 catches, 1,392 yards, 9 touchdownsKyle Rudolph: Round 7, pick 8As I’ve stated before, Rudolph is very touchdown dependent. The upside to him for 2018 is that Kirk Cousins has fared well throwing to tight ends over the duration of his career. The downside is that Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis do a lot more running with the ball in the open field than Rudolph, at least in the last few season anyway. Rudolph’s size will gives him a big edge over defenders in the red zone, an area of the field Cousins has had his issues with in the past. Expect Rudolph to put him stats that match up well relative to his ADP.Projection: 61 catches, 803 yards, 7 touchdownsKirk Cousins: Round 8, pick 2I’ve seen Cousins go as high as the start of the 5th round, and as low as the end of the 12th round. It’s really dependent on how each league and owner values quarterbacks. Dalvin Cook will play a huge role here, as Cousins is considered arguably the top play-action quarterback in the NFL. Even Jalen Ramsey said so! Cousins has all the skills position players he could ever need , the question will be how the offensive line protects him. If they are competent, don’t be shocked if his season is one of the five best among all quarterbacks in the 2018 campaign.Projection: 3,850 yards, 31 passing touchdowns, 3 rushing touchdowns, 9 intercetionsLatavius Murray: Round 12, pick 3Many Dalvin Cook owners will draft him as a spell. What’s interesting hear though is the notion that Murray could put up solid numbers, particularly early in the season if the Vikings decide to ease Cook back into action. Murray also could get a lot of looks deep in the red zone, stealing some touchdowns from Cook as well. He’s proven he can be a capable back when asked to have a heavier workload, but most signs point to Minnesota wanting to have him simply be a spell option. Still, don’t be shocked if he is someone who has a year that’s slightly better than where he is being drafted.Projection: 691 total yards from scrimmage, 7 total touchdowns,
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