In a shared role with Tua Tagovailoa last season, 36-year-old
journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for 2,091 yards and 13 touchdowns
in nine games for Miami, with eight interceptions and a pair of
rushing touchdowns. Although he was not great for fantasy at 18.1
points per game, his propensity to hyper-target wide receivers
and force the ball downfield has many people anticipating a monster
season for Terry McLaurin and a strong first year with the team
for newly signed Curtis Samuel.
Fitzpatrick signed a 1-year, $10 million deal to be a bridge
starter this season for whomever the Football team views as their
long-term solution in the draft or their QB room.
Washington boasts a strong defense and ground attack, which could
limit the number of passes for Fitzpatrick and reduce his ceiling.
However, he is a solid QB2 in super-flex formats and a streaming
starter in plus matchups, assuming he doesn’t go too crazy
with his gun-slinging ways and get benched for Taylor Heinicke.
Few running backs carried more buzz heading into fantasy draft
season last year than Antonio Gibson, a third-round selection
from Memphis who posted ridiculous efficiency stats and above-average
receiving skills in college.
With so much hype surrounding Gibson, it was impressive to see
him live up to that hype with 11 rushing touchdowns and just over
1000 total yards, despite getting eased into action by the Washington
coaching staff. Gibson did not see more than 13 carries in a game
until Week 7 against the Cowboys, when he went ham with 128 yards
and a score.
Gibson proved that he could shoulder most of the load as a first
and second down back, and his receiving skills earned him 36 receptions
in a crowded backfield of pass-catching options that includes
There has been talk in Washington’s camp that the team
wants to expand Gibson’s role in the passing game further,
making him even more of an attractive option and a solid pick
in the second round of most drafts.
We should all be lucky enough to find someone in our lives as
much as Alex Smith loved J.D. McKissic in 2020, with the 27-year-old
veteran running back posting a ridiculous 80-catch season with
captain check down throwing him the ball at an excessive rate.
Now that Smith has retired and the team has handed the ball to
Ryan Fitzpatrick, a QB who loves to throw the ball downfield and
force passes into tight windows, McKissic may not see the crazy
volume he enjoyed in his first year with the team. The addition
of Curtis Samuel also could be a knock for McKissic, as Samuel
is a skilled WR who could also see some work as an RB.
A sophomore slump for Terry McLaurin did not materialize despite
multiple injuries that limited his production and subpar quarterback
play. The former third-round pick from Ohio State saw a massive
increase in targets to 134 and posted his first 1100-yard season
as a pro.
On the downside, his touchdown production was cut in half, and
his yard per reception average dipped three full yards. Both of
these issues could be remedied by the addition of veteran quarterback
Ryan Fitzpatrick, who helped make DeVante Parker a fantasy stud
two seasons ago in Miami.
The addition of Curtis Samuel via free agency and the emergence
of tight end Logan Thomas could limit McLaurin’s volume ceiling.
Still, the change in QB and Fitzpatrick’s history of targeting
alpha wide receivers like McLaurin make the WR a desirable option
in the third and fourth round for those owners who go RB early.
Assuming his TD rate gets closer to the 12% rate he had as a
rookie compared to just 4% last year, look for McLaurin to push
into the top 12 at the position by the end of the year.
Samuel parlayed a career-best season in 2020 into a lucrative
free agent contract with the football team and a chance to reunite
with the man who drafted him, Washington Football Team head coach
Ron Rivera and his former OC Scott Turner.
The irony is Samuel had his best season with the Panthers under
Matt Rhule, and it was Rhule who finally started using Samuel
as a multi-dimensional threat as a runner and a receiver. Will
Rivera and Turner learn from their past mistakes with Samuel and
utilize him that way? Only time will tell. What we do know is
Samuel will be the No.2 WR opposite of Terry McLaurin and should
see at least 100 targets, making him a nice WR with upside to
target later in drafts.
Humphries was limited to just seven games in his final season
with Tennessee before the Titans cut him this offseason. In those
seven games, the six-year veteran managed to post just two games
of over ten fantasy points as the No.3 WR for Ryan Tannehill.
The addition of Humphries to the Washington Football Team passing
game will give newly signed veteran QB Ryan Fitzpatrick a reliable
option underneath, but from a pure fantasy perspective, it is
hard to imagine him getting enough volume as the presumed 4th
option after McLaurin, Samuel, and tight end Logan Thomas.
It may surprise some fantasy owners to learn that Thomas posted
the third-most targets for tight ends in 2020, trailing only Darren
Waller and Travis Kelce. The converted quarterback caught 72 passes
for 670 yards and six scores after building an excellent rapport
with Alex Smith, a QB well known to target tight ends and running
backs in the passing game.
Thomas enters 2021 as the starter at TE, but his tight-end friendly
quarterback retired and has been replaced by Ryan Fitzpatrick,
a QB who has a history of preferring wide receivers over tight
Although we do think he will take a bit of a step back this season,
Thomas is squarely in the mix for late-round tight ends to target
for those owners who pass on the top 5 at the position.