Since August 25th, I’ve had a thread pinned to my Twitter profile containing one Redraft prediction for each NFL team. Now that the fantasy football season is over, it’s time to look back at those predictions and see which ones were spot on and which were laughably wrong.
One redraft prediction for each NFL team.
I’ll pin this thread and revisit it after the season. 🧵
— Paul DFF (@fantasyfreezer) August 25, 2022
In this article, I’ll cover all 16 NFC teams. The AFC edition will be coming soon.
Three quick notes before we get started:
- None of these predictions were meant to be “hot takes.” I thought each of these predictions had a good chance of hitting before the season began.
- All scoring predictions are in PPR points per game with four points per passing TD.
- Week 18 is not included because it is not a part of the fantasy season.
Okay, let’s get to these predictions.
Arizona Cardinals: Marquise Brown will lead the Cardinals in TPG.
Marquise Brown got off to an incredible start in 2022, but he cooled off down the stretch after he suffered an ankle injury and DeAndre Hopkins returned to the lineup. Brown finished with a respectable 8.9 targets per game while Hopkins remained the top dog with 10.6.
Atlanta Falcons: Drake London will lead all rookies in receiving yards.
Considering the Atlanta Falcons only threw for 2,699 yards this season, it’s almost a miracle that Drake London reached 866 receiving yards. However, he was not the leading rookie receiver. That honor belongs to Garrett Wilson, who compiled 1,103 yards for the Jets.
Carolina Panthers: D.J. Moore will set career highs in yards and TDs.
The Baker Mayfield experiment did not go exactly how I expected, but I do have to give myself some credit here because I was half-right. D.J. Moore did set a new career high with six TDs. Thank you, regression.
Chicago Bears: Cole Kmet will finish as a Top-10 TE.
I expected Cole Kmet to command a significant target share in the Bears’ offense due to a lack of receiving weapons, which is exactly what happened. Kmet’s 19.3% target share ranked eighth at the position in 2022. Unfortunately, that only resulted in 69 total targets and a TE18 finish because the Bears threw the ball less than any team in the last 20 years.
Dallas Cowboys: CeeDee Lamb will finish as a Top-6 WR.
CeeDee Lamb broke out in 2022 with 107 receptions, 1,359 yards, and nine TDs, but he fell just short of the top six. Lamb finished as the WR8 for the season, just 0.5 PPG behind Ja’Marr Chase, the WR6. Despite being technically wrong, I’m still happy with this prediction. If Dak stayed healthy the whole season, or the Cowboys blew out fewer opponents, Lamb may have gotten there.
Detroit Lions: Amon-Ra St. Brown will outscore Amari Cooper.
Hey, I got one (completely) right! Amon-Ra St. Brown demonstrated elite target-earning potential in his rookie season, and that carried over to 2022. With a 28.1% target share in one of the league’s most-improved offenses, Amon-Ra finished as the WR9. Amari Cooper, who was typically drafted ahead of Amon-Ra, finished as the WR15.
Green Bay Packers: No Packers WR will finish inside the Top-36.
I have to give myself partial credit here because I was so, so, so close to being right. With Davante Adams out of the picture, I expected Aaron Rodgers to spread the ball around. And he did! Allen Lazard led the team with a 21% target share. Unfortunately for my prediction, he did just enough with that target share to finish as the WR36. And right behind him at WR37? Packers rookie Christian Watson. You just can’t make this stuff up.
Los Angeles Rams: Allen Robinson will catch Nine+ TDs.
I have no comment at this time.
Minnesota Vikings: Kirk Cousins will outscore Aaron Rodgers.
Aaron Rodgers fell flat in 2022, scoring fewer PPG than Mike White, Carson Wentz, and Marcus Mariota. Apparently, a couple of rookies could not mask the loss of Davante Adams. Shocking. Meanwhile, Kirk Cousins scored the second-most fantasy points of his career in Kevin O’Connell’s new offense. In the end, this one wasn’t close.
New Orleans Saints: Chris Olave will finish as a WR3.
Chris Olave put together a dominant rookie season, ranking 15th in target share and third in air yards share. But his production was limited by an inefficient offense and poor QB play. He finished 2022 as the WR27, which is firmly within WR3 territory.
New York Giants: Saquon Barkley will outscore Joe Mixon and Najee Harris.
Drafters that avoided Saquon Barkley due to a couple of injury-riddled seasons have to be feeling pretty bad right about now. Not only did Barkley play in every game this season, but he handled a massive workload and finished as a top-five RB. He outscored Joe Mixon and Najee Harris by a wide margin despite going after them in drafts this past summer.
Philadelphia Eagles: A.J. Brown will set career highs in targets, receptions, and yards.
In 2020, A.J. Brown set career highs in all three of these categories with 106 targets, 70 receptions, and 1,075 yards. He blew those numbers out of the water in his first season with Philadelphia, turning 145 targets into 88 receptions and 1,496 yards. Dominant.
San Francisco 49ers: Trey Lance will finish as a Top-8 QB.
This prediction wasn’t even close to correct because Trey Lance broke his ankle in Week 2. And, of course, there is no way of knowing how Lance would have faired if he had played the full season. But I will always bet on the immense upside of mobile QBs with elite weapons.
Seattle Seahawks: D.K. Metcalf will finish outside the Top-20 WRs.
When I made this prediction, I wasn’t expecting Geno Smith to break the Seahawks’ franchise record for passing yards in a season. But even with that unexpected twist, I was correct about D.K. Metcalf, who finished as the WR22. He wasn’t a bust by any means, but he fell short of expectations this year.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Mike Evans will finish outside the Top-10 WRs.
Mike Evans finished outside the top 10 WRs in 2020 and 2021 despite scoring a combined 27 TDs. But with the departures of Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski, drafters were able to talk themselves into Mike Evans as a Top-10 option once again. Unfortunately for them, Evans failed to deliver. He finished as the WR16 with his lowest TD total since 2017, and prior to his Week 17 explosion he was all the way down at WR30.
Washington Commanders: Terry McLaurin will set a career-high in fantasy points.
This prediction is technically correct. Terry McLaurin’s 212.6 fantasy points are a career-high. However, he did not eclipse his highest career PPG of 14.8, which he set in 2020. Looking back, I’m not sure why I phrased the prediction this way, but I will gladly take the win.
Now it’s time to tally up the NFC results.
Partially Correct: 2
Thanks for reading this article! Follow me on Twitter at @fantasyfreezer if you’d like to hear more from me. I love discussing strategy and trades and engaging in heated debates about this very silly game we play.