BOOM OR BUST: TYREEK HILL

Every fantasy season, there are a variety of players that unexpectedly take the NFL by storm and assert themselves as superstars. For example, Peyton Hillis was a one-year wonder for the Cleveland Browns. During his 2010-2011 campaign, he rushed for 1177 yards and 11 touchdowns. His season performance allowed him to become the featured player on the cover of Madden NFL 2012. Last year, seemingly out of nowhere, Tyreek Hill was another breakout player for the Kansas City Chiefs. Now he’s taking fantasy drafts by storm and is being selected as high as the fourth round. I’m not buying it. This article explains why I’m passing on Hill even though others commend his sky-high potential as the number one play maker in his second season for the Chiefs.

2016 Statistics

Primarily as a return man, Tyreek Hill began the season showing off his blazing speed on special teams which eventually led to an increased offensive role as the season rolled on. He finished the 2016 season averaging 15.2 yards per punt return and 27.4 yards per kickoff return and had three total return touchdowns. This lead to a trip to the pro bowl. Alongside his Devin Hester like skill set, he added valuable play making ability to the Kansas City offense. He contributed not only as a receiver but also a runner. Hill tallied 860 yards from scrimmage with 9 total touchdowns on only 85 touches. At that rate, he scored a touchdown every 9.4 times he touched the football. His efforts put him as the WR15 in standard leagues and the WR25 in PPR leagues according to Fantasy Pros. While his rookie year was certainly impressive, there are statistics that show he may have a challenging time repeating his success in year two.

 

Transition to a Primary Receiver

Kansas City coaches are excited to use their new toy in an offense that typically lacked big plays with Alex Smith at the helm.  They  expect Hill to be the top option at the receiver position throughout the 2017 season. I doubt his transition will be as seamless as most people expect. Kansas City has the most difficult fantasy season for their receiving options according to Fantasy Pros. Just in the division alone, Tyreek Hill will have to face off against the likes of Aqib Talib, Chris Harris Jr., and the interception leader from a year ago, Casey Heyward.

I don’t see how fantasy owners can throw their trust into a player that failed to top 100 yards receiving in any game last season. Hill was even held to five or fewer catches in 13 out of 16 games. The adjustment to a number one receiver may also limit Tyreek Hill’s usage in the run game in which he accumulated 267 yards and 3 touchdowns a season ago. While this seems impressive, his rushing numbers are a deceiving statistic. When looking at his stats from last season, I noticed he had two rushing touchdowns of 68 and 70 yards respectively. These two runs alone accounted for approximately 51.7% of his total rushing yards for the whole season. Take those away and you have 22 carries, 129 yards and 1 touchdown. Pretty lackluster for a whole season. Tyreek Hill is a big play utility player who doesn’t yet stand out as a true number one receiver in the NFL. His game breaking ability is like that of Tavon Austin or Percy Harvin. These are two players who have had respectable seasons, but none worthy of a fourth-round draft choice in fantasy football.

Current ADP and Value

Speaking of the fourth round in fantasy drafts, this brings me to the current ADP of Tyreek Hill. On Fantasy Football Calculator, Hill is being taken with the seventh pick in the fourth round in standard drafts. At pick number 55, he is being selected higher than other receivers such as Michael Crabtree, Davante Adams, Jarvis Landry, and Martavis Bryant.  My advice for fantasy owners is to avoid Tyreek Hill at almost all costs. If he somehow fell to the fifth or sixth round I would then consider selecting him for my team. Unless that’s the case, I would take players who have consistently proven themselves as productive fantasy players. Don’t draft Tyreek Hill solely based on his perceived upside. Be smart and take the best value players in your drafts.

 

Care to argue against my viewpoint? Any comments, questions or concerns? Find me on twitter: @DJFezler_TFR and we can debate.