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AFC East 2021 Fantasy Football Profile

AFC East 2021 Fantasy Football Profile

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Buffalo Bills

The Bills are the class of the AFC East in terms of wins and Fantasy Football production Buffalo didn’t really add any players of note to one of the most explosive offenses of 2020. 34 year old WR Emmanuel Sanders and RB Matt Breida were the only players added to the offense that could make even a slight difference. Bringing almost their entire starting offense back will be the key to their success entering 2021.

QB Josh Allen

  • Allen Finished 2nd in NFL MVP voting and as the #1 scoring fantasy QB in 2020 finishing 25 points clear of 2nd place finisher Kyler Murray
  • He had 8 rushing TDs in the regular season which tied him for 7th most in the NFL.
  • The 3rd year pro had 5 games of 35+ fantasy points…Most in the NFL.
  • Allen brings almost all passing weapons back in 2021 and should post another top 3 fantasy finish.

RB Zack Moss

  • The rookie missed 3 games at the beginning of the season with a toe injury and was never able to get on track after the injury and losing the pre-season due to covid.
  • Moss only finished with 1 top 13 RB scoring week and 2 top 24 weeks on the season.
  • He also only saw 18 targets as a rookie in a passing attack that was looking to push the ball down field.
  • Moss will be part of a 3 headed RB attack in Buffalo and should be avoided in drafts unless his ADP drops into the teens. 

RB Devin Singletary

  • Singletary led the Bills with only 5 top 24 scoring weeks at the position
  • The former 3rd round pick seemed to lose his starting position a few times to rookie Zack Moss during the 2021 season.
  • He finished 37th in RB scoring in 2021 and didn’t miss a single game. 
  • The Bills added RB Matt Breida do give the short passing game a spark and that will surely cut heavily into Singletary’s role. Avoid the 3rd year pro on draft day as Breida will probably overtake him in the backfield.

RB Matt Breida

  • Breida had a lost season in Miami due to hamstring and Covid issues
  • The veteran comes to Buffalo with speed to burn and is the fastest, most explosive RB on the roster by a mile.
  • Look for Breida to secure the 3rd down role in this Bills backfield and is the Buffalo RB I am targeting in the final rounds of Best-Ball Drafts.

WR Stefon Diggs

  • Diggs exploded onto the scene in Buffalo finishing as a top 3 Fantasy WR.
  • He had 3 top-3 weekly finishes which tied him for 2nd in the NFL and also posted 11 top-24 weeks, showing his great consistency with his new QB Josh Allen.
  •  Diggs led the NFL with 166 targets in 2020 and that should change much in 2021 with John Brown leaving in free agency and the team only adding 34 year old Emmanuel Sanders.
  •  He is only 27 and will continue to lock in with his new QB going into his 2nd year with the Bills.
  •  Do not hesitate to draft the elite WR in the 2nd round of all your drafts this summer.

WR Gabe Davis

  • The rookie got better as the season went on and finished with 7 TDs in 2021. He also had 3 TDs called back.
  •  He finished with 62 targets which was 3rd on the team. WR John Brown is gone and only Emmanuel Sanders was added. Those targets could definitely go up in 2021.
  •  He also had a big playoff game against Indy with 4 huge catches for 85 yards. He clearly had Allens confidence and should continue to jell with him in 2021.
  •  Davis is one of my favorite sleepers in Best-Ball drafts and I love stacking him with Cole Beasley in rounds 12-15.

WR Cole Beasley

  • He had a career year in 2020 with 82 catches for 967 yards and 4 TDs. 
  • Beasley had 3 top-12 scoring weeks and 5 top-24 scoring weeks in 2020 finishing as WR 31.
  • Beasley has built a great rapport with Josh Allen but may face some target competition in the slot from newcomer Emmanuel Sanders. 
  • This is his 2nd year in a row with over 100 targets in this Bills offense.
  • I am drafting him in rounds 12-15 in most best-ball drafts and usually stacking him with Gabe Davis when I can. 

TE Dawson Knox

  • Knox was a 3rd round pick in 2019 and has shown some flashes as a Bill scoring 5 TDs in 2020 including 2 in the playoffs.
  • His speed and athleticism are his strengths but he has really struggled with drops since coming into the league.
  • The Bills only added Jacob Hollister to the TE room but Hollister and Josh Allen did play together at Wyoming.
  • I am only looking to draft Knox as a TE3 in TE Premium Best-Ball leagues.

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Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins added a ton of weapons this off season to help support their 2nd year QB Tua Tagovialoa. Adding Will Fuller through Free Agency and taking Jaylen Waddle in round 1 of the 2021 draft were 2 of the biggest upgrades any single team made to their receiving core. Improvements made to the O line as well should help this Dolphins Offense make a huge leap in 2021.

QB Tua Tagovialoa

  • His 10 game sample size and lack of Weaponry due to injury make it hard to evaluate Tus’s rookie season.
  • 3 Rushing TDs in only 10 games was nice to see from the rookie. Let’s see if the Dolphins continue to  use his legs around the goal line.
  • Tua only had 1 top 12 finish at the position through 10 games in 2020
  • The Dolphins have potentially top 5 weapons and a much improved O line in 2021.
  • WRs Jaylen Waddle and Will Fuller might combine to be one of the fastest WR duos in the NFL and should help produce plenty of big plays for Tua.

RB Myles Gaskin

  • Gaskin was the best RB in Miami last season and the Dolphins only added 7th round RB Gerrid Doaks and free agent Malcolm Brown. Neither will push to take carries from Gaskin.
  • Gaskin only averaged 4.1 YPC last year with 3 TDs and 2 fumbles but his 41 catches in 10 games is what kept him in flex starter range.
  • Covid and an MCL sprain cost Gaskin six games last season, but he was a top-eight in PPR points per game when healthy.
  • Gaskin is being drafted as RB 23 in recent FFPC drafts and is a nice value there as long as the Dolphins don’t add anyone else.

RB Salvon Ahmed

  • Ahmed showed flashes in 2020 averaging more YPC and having the same amount of rushing TDs (3) as his running mate Myles Gaskin.
  • He clearly ran behind Gaskin in 2020 but the Dolphins only added Malcolm Brown to the backfield as competition this season, so Ahmed may get another crack at carving out a role.
  • Remember Ahmed was a rookie last year with no camp and running behind Gaskin, Breida and Jordan Howard. I don’t think we have seen his best yet.

WR WIll Fuller V

  • The landing spot for Fuller could not have been worse as he competes with DeVante Parker, Jaylen Waddle and TE Mike Gesicki for targets in an offense led by a noodle-armed QB in Tua Tagovialoa. 
  • He was coming off of his best season yet with 4 top 12 WR weeks in only 11 games due to his season being cut short after being suspended for PEDs.
  • Fuller has had trouble staying healthy in the past but played every game (he left early week 2) before the suspension. 
  • He will again be in a contract year after only signing a 1 year deal with the Dolphins.
  • After being all in on him in 2020 I am not optimistic about Fuller in 2021 but his WR40 price tag in recent FFPC drafts keeps him in a draftable range for me. 

WR DeVante Parker

  • He played 8 games with Tua in 2020, in those games he averaged 7.1 targets, 3.6 receptions, 43.1 yards, and 0.25 touchdowns. Now he has to compete with newly added WRs Will Fuller and Jaylen Waddle.
  • Parker has the size to be a Red Zone threat but has only topped 4 TDs one time.
  • He has pretty much been a bust since entering the league as a first round pick 6 years ago
  • Parker may be the odd man out in Miami and even his 12th round price tag sounds expensive.

WR Jaylen Waddle

  • Waddle brings huge play-making ability to the Dolphins receiving core. 
  •   As the 2nd WR off the board in the 2021 NFL draft Miami will look to make significant use of him in his first year.
  • The signing of Will Fuller should allow Waddle to move into the slot and take full advantage of nickel corners. Also Tua lacks prototypical arm strength and will welcome a game breaker on the underneath routes.
  • Being a rookie, not having an elite QB and an overall lack of targets make Waddle a gamble at his 9th round ADP.

TE Mike Gesicki

  • He was 3rd in the NFL with 3 Top-2 fantasy finishes at the position in 2020
  • Gesicki only finished with 5 top 12 weeks which ranked 21st at the position on a per game basis. That shows how boom or bust he was last season.
  • Only 85 targets came his way in 2020 and there will be much more competition for looks in 2021 after Miami added Jaylen Waddle and Will Fuller in the off season. 
  • The ceiling is low for Gesicki with all the mouths to feed and his TE12 price tag makes him too expensive for me. 

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New England Patriots

The Patriots made some interesting off season additions to their offense trying to spark one of the league’s worst units from 2020. The Pats spent a ton of money on TEs Hunter Henry and TE Jonnu Smith in Free Agency. They also added WRs Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne. A trade with the Baltimore Ravens brought in Trent Brown to solidify an already rock solid O line. The draft brought in 1st round QB Mac Jones to be the future at QB and in the 4th round they selected bruising RB Rhamondre Stevenson. This could be a whole new offense in 2021.

QB Cam Newton

  • Cam comes off a season where he threw 8 TDs in 15 games. I didn’t think that was possible in today’s NFL.
  • His 7.2 Y/A was actually the second most of his 8 year career.
  • The additions of TEs Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry should offset the loss of WR Julian Edelman to retirement.
  • He has been working with a throwing coach this off season trying to improve his fundamentals.
  • 1st round draft pick Mac Jones will be waiting in the wings if Cam struggles early in 2021
  • Cam is being drafted as QB23 in the 17th round of FFPC drafts and that still may be a little high for me as I don’t see him making it through the season as the starter in New England.

QB Mac Jones

  • Mac was the 5th QB taken in the 2021 NFL draft.
  • He is a drop back pocket passer that offers nothing on the ground.
  • If Mac does get thrust into the starting lineup he would have great protection due to the Pats elite O line and running 12 Personnel. 
  • Mac should not be drafted in season long drafts at this point.

RB Damien Harris

  • Only topped 16 touches twice in 2020
  • There will be more competition in 2021 as Sony Michel and James White are back in the mix and they drafted Rhamondre Stevenson in the 4th round of the draft.
  • Harris did average 5 ypc and also flashed with 3 games of at least 100 yards rushing. 
  • I am fading the New England backfield if Cam is the starter as he will garner all the goal line work, but if Mac Jones takes over Harris could pop, especially around the goal line. 

RB James White

  • White is a pass catching specialist and in 2020 had the least amount of targets he’s seen since 2015.
  • The crowded backfield will only allow for white to see work in the passing game in 2021.
  • Mac Jones would be a huge boost to White’s fantasy value as he would be much more likely to check down.
  • White is a fine Zero RB target in the late rounds of your draft.

RB Rhamondre Stevenson

  • A 2 down bruiser that can steal goal line carries in this offense. 
  • If Mac Jones gets the nod at QB Stevenson is a sneaky sleeper late in drafts

WR Nelson Agholor

  • Had a career high in yards, YPC and TDs in 2020.
  • His 18.7 YPC is 6 more than his previous high of 12.4. This will be unsustainable in 2021.
  • Agholor will be the number one receiver in New England but probably the 4th in targets behind TE Hunter Henry, TE Jonnu Smith and RB James White.
  • He is the only WR worth drafting for the Pats right now and is going in the 16th round as WR67 in FFPC Drafts.

TE Jonnu Smith

  • Smith signed a 4 year, $50 Million Dollar contract this off season
  • He signed before Hunter Henry and for a bigger contract
  • Jonnu’s skills were never utilized to their fullest potential in Tennessee, but he still finished as a top 12 TE in 2020.
  • I envision the Patriots rolling out a similar offense to when they had Gronk and Aaron Hernandez and there should be plenty of targets to go around.
  • Jonnu is a fine pick as the TE16 of the board in FFPC drafts.

TE Hunter Henry

  • Henry signed a three-year deal worth $37.5M. 
  • It is important to note that he signed after TE Jonnu Smith and for less years and money. 
  • Henry is coming off of a 60 catch 4 TD season for the Chargers.
  • He should be the main Red Zone threat for the Patriots as they lack any size at the WR position. 
  • The Patriots should run plenty of 12 personnel with Henry and Jonnu Smith never leaving the field.
  • There is plenty of upside as the TE15 off the board in FFPC formats.

The Team Rise or Fall Study Hub, seen above sorted for Buffalo RB, was an invaluable tool for researching the information in this division preview.

New York Jets

The Jets revamped the entire team from top to bottom. There is a new Head Coach, a new coaching staff and a new Quarterback. QB Zach Wilson was the Jets pick at #2 overall after the team traded away Sam Darnold to the Panthers. The offense also gets a spark at RB by adding Tevin Coleman in free agency and Michael Carter in the draft. WR Corey Davis came over from Tennessee after having a career year and WR Elijah Moore was added in the 2nd round of the draft.

QB Zach Wilson

  • 2nd overall pick by the Jets.
  • Has a huge arm and is mobile but his height and concerns with competition in college may hold him back in his rookie season.
  • Should have a deep receiving core to throw to with nice size in Corey Davis and Denzel Mims and speedy underneath receivers like Elijah Moore and Jamison Crowder.
  • Wilson has the potential for a few hundred rushing yards and a couple TDs which will boost his fantasy scoring even if he struggles as a rookie.
  • Wilson is going as QB31 in FFPC drafts and that is probably where he belongs until he proves otherwise.

RB Tevin Coleman

  • He had a lost season in 2020 with only 28 carries for 53 yards and 0 TDs
  • Coleman is already 28 years old and has yet to have that breakout season or clear 800 yards rushing.
  • He follows the Niners coaching brass over to NY and knows the Kyle Shannahan system very well.
  • The Jets did add RB Michael Carter in the draft and some think he fits the system perfectly.
  • Coleman may not end the year as the lead back but he will probably begin the season as the starter.
  • You could do worse at RB in the range that Coleman is being drafted, he is currently the 57th RB off the board in FFPC drafts.

RB Michael Carter

  • The rookie fits the Shannahan zone running scheme to a tee.
  • The Jets drafted this 4th rounder to a backfield with not much competition as Journeyman Tevin Coleman and Ty Johnson are the only RBs that stand in his way of significant touches.
  • Carter is already the best pass catching back on the roster and should secure the 3rd down role very early in the season.
  • Unfortunately there isn’t much value and Carter is a darling of early drafters going as the RB32 in FFPC drafts currently. I am willing to take a shot on him in the 7th round of early drafts and hope the price doesn’t go up.

WR Corey Davis

  • He had a breakout season in 2020 with 65 catches for 984 yards and 5 TDs…all career highs.
  • Davis is still only 26 years old and joins a team without an alpha receiver.
  • The Jets should be playing most of their games from behind and drafted a rookie QB with a huge arm. All of this bodes well for Davis who should thrive downfield at 6’3”.
  • Davis is being drafted as the WR48 in FFPC drafts and would be a nice value there if he become the Jets #1 target.

WR Denzel Mims

  • Was taken in the 2nd round by the old Jets regime in 2020
  • Will probably be the odd man out as the new Jets coaching staff signed Corey Davis and drafted Elijah Moore and they already have Jamison Crowder on the roster.
  • Mims has an ADP in the 15th round and there are players in that range with higher upside

WR Elijah Moore

  • Taken as the 6th WR in the 2021 draft as pick 34.
  • The Jets receiving core is very crowded at the moment with veteran slot receiver Jamison Crowder and outside WRs Corey Davis and Denzel Mims.
  • Moore will need to make an early impact to see time over Crowder who is rumored to be on the trading block.
  • He is undraftable right now with ADP in the 13th round around players like Cole Beasley, Gabe Davis and Rashod Bateman.

TE Chris Herndon IV

  • Might be the only skill starter left from the Adam Gase regime and almost all talented players rise after leaving Gase.
  • Is this Herndon’s year to finally break out? He is only 25 and has shown flashes through 3 seasons.
  • Don’t forget that most TEs take a few years to develop regardless of situation.
  • The Shannahan coaching tree has always utilized the TE in their offense.
  • I have been targeting Herndon in every draft as the 27th TE off the board and you should too!!

Make sure to check out the Rise or Fall Draft Kit for comprehensive research and draft tools as you prep for the upcoming Fantasy Football season!

Featured Photo Credit: Erik Drost

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