Carson Wentz enters the 2019 season as one of the better values
at the quarterback position. Although he was limited in each of
his last two seasons with leg and back injuries, Wentz continues
to put up QB production in what should be a potent Philadelphia
Wentz played in only 11 games last season as a back injury forced
him the IR. However, in those games, Wentz averaged more fantasy
points than a host of other fantasy players, including Baker Mayfield,
Russell Wilson, Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, and Kirk Cousins.
The second overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft ranked 5th overall
for qualified QBs on our consistency rankings (at least ten games),
behind only Patrick Mahomes, Matt Ryan, Andrew Luck, and Cam Newton.
Positive trends surround the Eagles offense on both the offensive
line and skill positions, as Howie Roseman added tackle Andre
Dillard in the draft, along with running back Miles Sanders and
wide receiver JJ Arcega-Whiteside. Perhaps the most significant
addition to the offense is the return of wide receiver DeSean
Jackson, who will give Wentz a much-needed player to stretch the
Only a few quarterbacks in the league boast the number of weapons
that Carson Wentz has at his disposal. While there is always the
concern of injury, Wentz could be one of the best values of the
Miles Sanders followed his former backfield mate at Penn State,
joining an NFC East team in the NFL Draft. Although not as highly
touted as Saquon Barkley, Sanders is a well-rounded player who
could end up being the three-down back that the Eagles have struggled
to find over the last few seasons.
Unfortunately for Sanders, the backfield of the Eagles is deep,
and head coach Doug Pederson loves to use different backs in different
formations. The team traded for veteran back Jordan Howard this
offseason, and Corey
Smallwood, and Josh
Adams are still on the roster.
It may take Sanders time to earn more carries, but there is no
question that the Eagles offense is potent and there is a ton
of fantasy value to be had there. The one area in which Sanders
shines over his competitors, notably Howard, is in the passing
Before using an early draft pick on Penn State running back Miles
Sanders, the Eagles shipped off a late-round pick to the Bears
for running back Jordan Howard, a north-south tailback who did
not fit the scheme run by Chicago head coach Matt Nagy.
One could argue that the move is a bit of a head-scratcher for
the Eagles based on the fact that Doug Pederson also likes to
have running backs that can catch. The one thing that does make
sense is the Eagles did not have a bruising back on their roster
for short yardage and early down work, a role that Howard will
likely assume to start the season.
Howard finished the 2018 season as the No.27 ranked running back
based on fantasy points per game, just .2 points per game behind
his former backfield mate, Tarik Cohen. A concerning trend for
Howard is the fact that he has declined in fantasy points per
game and yards per attempt in each of his three seasons in the
league. His 3.7 yard per carry average last year was disappointing
considering the improvements to the Bears offense, and he continues
to be a non-factor in the passing game.
For the second consecutive season, Alshon Jeffery finished just
inside the top-24 rankings at the wide receiver position. In only
13 games of action, the seven-year veteran posted 65 catches for
843 yards and six touchdowns on 92 targets. His 16-game pace would
have given him 80 catches for 1,037 yards and seven touchdowns,
which would have made him a strong No.2 WR in all formats.
Injuries continue to be an issue for Jeffery - a player who has
logged a full-16 game season just three times in his career and
just once dating back to 2014. Another issue is the chance for
a decline in targets with the addition of DeSean Jackson and JJ
Arcega-Whiteside. There are a finite number of targets to go around,
and tight end Zach Ertz is going to once again be the leading
target hog on the team. Will Jeffery get enough volume to justify
the mid-round draft cost required to get him? In standard leagues,
the answer is likely yes, but owners in PPR formats may want to
find another option.
Jackson returns to the team that drafted him out of the University
of California in the second round of the 2008 NFL draft. At age
32, Jackson still possesses elite speed and exceptional talent
for beating coverage downfield, which are two aspects that were
missing from the Eagles last season.
As the third or fourth option in the passing game, Jackson will
not be a volume player and reaching the 100-target mark may be
a challenge. But with opposing defenses focused on stopping Zach
Ertz and Alshon Jeffrey, Jackson should get more than his fair
share of deep passes with the opportunity for big plays.
In standard scoring leagues where touchdowns are more valuable,
adding a player like Jackson as a high-end No.3 WR is an excellent
Agholor might be the forgotten man in a crowded Eagles wide receiving
corps that now includes DeSean Jackson and JJ Arcega-Whiteside.
The former first-round pick in the 2015 NFL draft posted a career-high
62 catches for 768 yards and eight touchdowns in 2017, only to
follow up with four touchdowns last season on nearly the same
number of targets, receptions, and receiving yards.
The eight touchdowns in 2017 appear to be more of an outlier
than a trend in the right direction for Agholor, and the addition
of Jackson will make it difficult to approach the 97 targets he
received last season.
At 6’2”, 225 lbs, Arcega-Whiteside has excellent
size to be a downfield and red zone threat for the Eagles. On
film he played even bigger than his 6’2” frame, excelling
at boxing out defenders on contested catches like a power forward
grabbing a rebound.
As a senior at Stanford, he posted career-highs in catches (63),
touchdowns (14), and receiving yards (1059). While his combine
scores may not be as impressive as fellow draft mates like D.K.
Metcalf, his production on the field in college is undeniable.
It remains to be seen how much action Arcega-Whiteside will see
as a rookie on a team flush with capable wide receivers and the
league’s leading pass catcher at the tight end position.
Look for Arcega-Whiteside to start slowly; as most rookies do,
but he could have some value in standard formats should he become
a TD-dependent red zone option in the offense as a rookie.
Ertz set an NFL tight end record with 116 receptions last season
in route to finishing as the No.3 tight end behind Travis Kelce
and George Kittle. In addition to making a sizable leap in receptions,
targets, and receiving yards, Ertz followed up 2017 with a second-consecutive
year of eight receiving touchdowns.
With four straight seasons of at least 100 targets, there is
no doubt that Ertz will once again be the focal point of the Eagles
offense. As many teams struggle to incorporate the tight end position
into their offense, the Eagles, 49ers, and Chiefs each feature
their respective tight ends prominently, making Kelce, Ertz, and
Kittle worth an early draft pick in all formats.
You could argue that no other team in the NFL did more this free
agent and NFL draft period to improve their offense that the Eagles.
With additions to an already highly touted offensive line, and
the signing of free agent DeSean Jackson and rookies JJ Arcega
Whiteside and Miles Sanders, Philadelphia is going to be a very
strong offense filled with fantasy value. Sitting atop that value
pyramid is Zach Ertz, who has another strong chance to be an elite
TE in 2019.