It’s that time of year once again! Football Absurdity will bring you a breakdown of every notable fantasy football-relevant player throughout June, July, and August. We start off with the quarterbacks. I rode hard for Ryan Tannehill last season, as he was adding Julio Jones to an offense that was poised to be one of the most calculatingly explosive teams in the NFL. They exploded alright, as the Titans had the #1 seed in the AFC bracket of the NFL playoffs last year. But, that came down to a whole team effort, and Ryan Tannehill languished on fantasy football rosters. Fast forward to 2022, and Derrick Henry is coming off of a foot fracture, A.J. Brown is a Titan, and Ryan Tannehill has a new set of weapons. Will he get back to his QB9 ways, where he finished in 2020? Let’s take a look!
Ryan Tannehill ADP and AAV:
Average Draft Position: QB24, 182 overall
Average Auction Value: $1
Ryan Tannehill Statistics:
|Year||4 PPTD||6 PPTD||4 PPTD/G||6 PPTD/G||Year||Att||Yd||TD||YPC||Att/G||Yd/G|
aDOT+ represents a player’s depth of target compared to the league average for that season. Air yards data is from FTNFantasy.com/air-yards
2022 Ryan Tannehill Fantasy Football Overview:
Ryan Tannehill lived and died with Derrick Henry’s workload. Through the first six games of 2021, Henry averaged 27 rush attempts for 130 rushing yards and scored 10 touchdowns in six games. There wasn’t a lot left for Ryan Tannehill after all of that, which is why he had just 245 passing yards and a touchdown per game in that same timeframe. Then, Derrick Henry broke his foot, and the whole offense sort of fell apart. That helps to explain the reorganization this year because having A.J. Brown and nothing else (except a rebuilt D’Onta Foreman) was not the recipe for an exceptionally functional offense.
Now, Tannehill trades in A.J. Brown Treylon Burks, Robert Woods, and Austin Hooper. Gone are the days of us squinting and trying to figure out how Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and Geoff Swaim could be good. Tannehill has some weapons now! And they’re good!
But, I still don’t think that Tannehill has top-ten upside anymore. It has nothing to do with Tannehill, and everything to do with A.J. Brown. The year that Tannehill finished inside the top ten, twelve of A.J. Brown’s 63 catches were for over 20 yards, while A.J. Brown ranked eleventh in yards after the catch, and just 49th in target distance. That means that he was getting lots of short passes and doing all the hard work for Ryan Tannehill. While I hope that Treylon Burks can do the hard part for Tanny in 2022, I worry that a guy who is 80% of A.J. Brown just turns the 21-yard pass attempts into 7-yarders, and it won’t buoy Tannehill’s fantasy football value.
Another problem with Tannehill in 2022: A.J. Brown did all the hard work on the long plays, and he led the league in 50+ touchdown receptions since he entered the league in 2019. In fact, in the span that he’s been in the league, only Cincinnati, Minnesota, both L.A. teams, Seattle and Green Bay have more such plays in the same timeframe.
The only thing that keeps Running Matt Ryan’s value upright is that he has seven rushing touchdowns in each of his full seasons as the Titans’ starting quarterback. Because of this, he has more upside than guys like Matt Ryan but the entire offense just scares me.
2022 Ryan Tannehill Fantasy Football Draft Strategy:
Ryan Tannehill lost the one thing in his offense that will help him be good in 2022. Granted, the rest of the offense will be better, which should help offset that loss, but I’m not entirely sure if I want to get ahold of Ryan Tannehill in any league. He’s a more volatile Matt Ryan at this point, and that volatility could get him benched. He has Malik Willis waiting in the wings, which means he could get benched at any point and your 2QB league quarterback is suddenly worthless.
I’m not super interested in Tannehill in a 1QB league, at any price but in a 2QB or Superflex league, his QB23 price is a risk I’m willing to take, especially since I can back that up with Malik Willis at QB35. This will insulate me from Tannehill’s downside, and get me some of that upside.
Best Case Scenario:
Treylon Burks is A.J. Brown, and they return to running that style of offense, but with Robert Woods in tow. Tannehill finishes as a top-ten quarterback.
Worst Case Scenario:
Treylon Burks isn’t A.J. Brown, and the Titans just let Derrick Henry and Malik Willis run the ball 50 times per game.
Check out all our 2022 player profiles, here.
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For more analysis like these player profiles, check out these links!
[Header Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8c/Ryan_Tannehill_2019_10-13.jpg under CC-SA 4.0]