28-year-old Robert Woods is now coming off back to back to back 1,000+ yard seasons, establishing himself as a steady and dependable WR. Woods is a crafty route runner with a high football IQ, making him a trusted target for his QB Jared Goff. In 2018 Woods saw 131 targets (13th most in the league), he then followed that up with 140 targets in 2019 (8th most). In addition to being a target magnet, he adds value and fantasy points as a ball carrier. In 2018, Woods carried the ball 19 times for 157 yards and a touchdown bringing his total yards and touchdowns to 1,376 and seven. This past season Robert Woods had 17 carries for 115 yards and one touchdown bringing his total yards and touchdowns to 1,249 and three. This production equated to 261 PPR points (WR9) in 2018 and 212 PPR points (WR19) in 2019. Woods is a safe bet to be a WR2 in 2020, with the upside of mid-tier WR1 production.
Looking into 2020, Woods projects closer to his 2018 finish of WR9. Down the stretch in 2019 Woods became THE MAN in Los Angeles, a real target hog to end the season.
From weeks 9-17, Robert Woods averaged 11.2 targets per game (not including Week 10).
Over that same time frame, Tyler Higbee averaged 8.25 targets, while Cooper Kupp averaged just 5.9 targets per game.
If that trend held through 16 games, Woods could have 140+ targets pic.twitter.com/A0Xc8uInEO
— Matt Williams (@MattWi77iams) June 22, 2020
In addition to the all the targets Woods should see in 2020, positive regression points to Woods scoring a lot more than two receiving touchdowns. Another plus for Woods in 2020 is the departure of Brandin Cooks, who leaves behind 72 targets. The Rams still have Josh Reynolds on the roster and added Van Jefferson in round two of the draft, but it is hard to project all 72 targets going to either one of them. Simply put, in 2020 Woods should see over 120 targets and should score more than two receiving touchdowns. This sets him up for an improvement on his 2019 finish of WR19. A conservative projection for Woods in 2020 is 85 receptions, 1,300 total yards, and five total touchdowns. This comes out to 245 points which would have been WR12 in 2019.
When looking beyond 2020 for Woods, things are a little murkier. Robert Woods is only signed with the Rams through 2021, so there is no guarantee he is there long term. However, 2021 could be a very big year for Woods, as Cooper Kupp’s contract expires at the end of the 2020 season. For this reason, I believe it is safe to assume Woods walks the line between a high-end WR2 and low-end WR1 for the next two seasons. Come 2022 if Woods is on a new team, at worst-case scenario he is their second option at WR.
In the past month or so, Woods’ ADP has been on the rise, up to 52 at FFPC. However, with this ADP on the rise, I still think Woods is a value in startups and buy for contending teams. At 28 years old, just one year older than Michael Thomas, Odell Beckham, and Cooper Kupp, his ADP is low considering his production the past two years and outlook for the next two years. In the past two mock drafts I have been in, Woods has gone in the fifth round at 5.08 and 5.05. If you can add Woods to your team as your second or third WR in the fifth round you should be sitting pretty at the WR position for the next few years. As a contending team, I would feel comfortable giving a mid-late 2021 first and maybe another smaller piece to move the needle for Robert Woods. I have been targeting Woods in startup drafts and will continue to shop for him on my contending teams. I would encourage you to do the same as the price is more than fair for the production you can expect in 2020 and 2021.
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