After effectively over a yr, the Deshaun Watson authorized saga has lastly reached a conclusion … not less than because it pertains to his NFL standing. All of us knew a suspension was coming, however we simply didn’t know the way prolonged. Right now, it has been introduced that Watson is suspended for the first six games of the 2022 season. Let’s dive into the fantasy football impression this has on the Cleveland Browns’ offense.
Observe: Though Watson settled with 23 of the 24 plaintiffs, this example is much from over. Him enjoying soccer has a major fantasy impression, however it’s trivial when in comparison with the precise allegations towards Watson. I hope everybody’s reality is heard and everybody concerned will get the justice they deserve. With that stated, let’s get to the fantasy implications.
Deshaun Watson suspension: Affect on Watson and Jacoby Brissett’s fantasy worth
This information actually breathes life into Watson’s fantasy worth. Realizing that fantasy managers could have him for as much as 10 or 11 weeks, together with the fantasy playoffs, is big. From 2018 to 2020, Watson was a top-five QB in all three seasons. Given he’s lacking six video games, he possible gained’t get that top general, however on a week-to-week foundation, there’s no cause he can not produce these numbers.
Watson’s ADP will possible rise within the coming days. There was common optimism he would mess around half the season, so it shouldn’t skyrocket. Nevertheless, certainty will possible encourage fantasy managers to be bolder in relation to choosing Watson.
It was at all times anticipated that in some unspecified time in the future, Jacoby Brissett can be taking snaps for the Browns this season. Brissett may be very a lot a replacement-level-at-best QB for fantasy managers. In his two seasons as a starter for the Colts in 2017 and 2019, Brissett completed because the QB20 and 23, respectively.
That degree of efficiency shouldn’t be dismissed in a Superflex league. Brissett generally is a stable matchup-based starter on a week-to-week foundation, however it doesn’t get far more thrilling than that. In 1QB leagues, Brissett is basically an undraftable commodity. He might have worth throughout the season as a streamer, however it’s actually nothing greater than that.
Affect on Amari Cooper
The largest impression of Watson’s absence shall be felt by Amari Cooper. The Browns’ new WR1 was poised for a bounce-back yr after a disappointing WR25 end in 2021. Cooper averaged simply 13.5 PPR fantasy factors per recreation final season.
Brissett was final a beginning quarterback (not counting the 5 video games he stuffed in for Tua Tagovailoa final yr) for the Colts, beginning two seasons for them. Throughout that point, the Colts’ WR1 was T.Y. Hilton. Listed here are Hilton’s ppg averages from 2016-2019. Let me know for those who discover a sample.
- 2016: 17 ppg
- 2017: 11 ppg
- 2018: 17.1 ppg
- 2019: 12.5 ppg
Care to guess which two seasons Brissett began?
Sadly, Cooper’s ceiling for the primary six weeks is severely capped with Brissett. A receiver that beforehand had high-WR2 potential is now set for a cut up season. These first six weeks with Brissett, he might wrestle to even have WR3 worth. Nevertheless, as soon as Watson returns, that worth instantly will increase to high-WR2 with WR1 potential in the precise matchup.
Affect on David Njoku
After signing a four-year, $74 million extension this offseason, fantasy managers have been again in on David Njoku as a sleeper TE1 hopeful this season. Watson’s suspension places these desires on maintain as soon as once more.
Njoku’s career-best efficiency got here in 2018 when he averaged 9.6 ppg. Over the previous two seasons, he’s averaged 6.7 ppg and 4 ppg, respectively. Brissett just isn’t going to be the architect of Njoku’s resurgence.
With that stated, Brissett did goal the tight finish place at a 29% clip in 2019. It was the fourth-highest price within the league. This information on Watson will possible have a slight on Njoku’s ADP. It might barely elevate it as many have been probably anticipating an eight-game suspension or longer. Nevertheless, it was turning into clear we’d see Watson on the sector in some unspecified time in the future in 2022, so his worth ought to be pretty settled.
What concerning the Browns’ different go catchers?
No matter who performs quarterback, I’ve little interest in Donovan Peoples-Jones. DPJ will do his normal factor the place he catches a deep landing from time to time. Exterior of a few spike weeks, he shall be beneath eight fantasy factors.
Brissett just isn’t able to supporting a number of fantasy-relevant receivers. Cooper will possible be the one Browns extensive receiver returning worth within the first few weeks. Nevertheless, when Watson returns, there is likely to be a case to have a look at a few of the different choices as waiver wire additions.
Rookie David Bell is intriguing. He utterly bombed athletic testing, however his school manufacturing profile is implausible. There’s undoubtedly an opportunity he emerges right into a productive NFL receiver, however it’s unlikely to be early in his rookie season with Brissett as his quarterback. Bell’s off the redraft radar for now, however he could possibly be a stable pickup once we are nearer to Watson’s return.
Affect on Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt
They are saying a rising tide lifts all boats. Though Watson’s mobility will probably take alternatives away from the operating backs, the general offense can be higher. This could possible improve dashing effectivity and landing upside.
With out Watson, it’s established order for Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. The 2 will proceed sharing work, with Chubb as the first runner and Hunt because the receiving again. Fantasy managers can depend on Chubb to be a floor-based excessive RB1/low RB2, proper round 16 ppg.
Hunt averaged 13.8 ppg final season and 13.7 ppg in 2020. Which will drop a bit as traditionally, Brissett doesn’t goal operating backs as typically as Baker Mayfield did. Brissett threw to RBs 18.7% of the time in 2019. Mayfield focused the place 21.1% of the time final season. Nevertheless, general, this backfield ought to look largely the identical.