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 continue with the wide receivers. Today, we take a look at a wide receiver who had a massive breakout 2021 campaign right before the Raiders went out and got one of the best wide receivers (if not the best wide receiver) in the NFL. What should we do with Hunter Renfrow for our 2022 fantasy football leagues?
Hunter Renfrow ADP and AAV:
Average Draft Position: WR34, 80 overall
Average Auction Value: $1.7
Hunter Renfrow Statistics:
|Year||Std Pts||HPPR Pts||PPR Pts||Pts/G||HPPR Pts/G||PPR Pts/G||Pts/Tgt||HPPR Pts/Tgt||PPR Pts/Tgt|
|Year||Air Yards||aDOT||YAC||YAC/Tgt||YAC/Rec||AYMS||Tgt MS|
2022 Hunter Renfrow Fantasy Football Overview:
Hunter Renfrow had himself a breakout in 2021 (6 catches for 61 yards per game), after he had a mini-breakout in 2019 (5 catches for 70 yards per game in the second half of the season, with two of eight games over 100 yards receiving) and then broke my heart in 2020 (3.5 catches for 41 yards per game over the season, with one game over 75 yards). He did his damage from the slot, where he has played about two-thirds of his snaps in the NFL. Newcomer superstar Davante Adams only runs about 20% of his plays from the slot, so he isn’t a real threat to Renfrow’s snaps.
But, what about Renfrow’s targets? That’s really what we’re worried about here, anyway. Personally, I’m not too concerned about Renfrow’s targets. While vacated targets aren’t as simple as their proponents make them out to be, they also aren’t as complicated and unnecessary as their opponents make them out to be. But, here’s the simple calculus: Henry Ruggs is a felon, Zay Jones is a Jaguar, Bryan Edwards is a Falcon, DeSean Jackson is off doing antisemitism, and Davante Adams deserves about 160 targets. Well, Jones and Edwards accounted for 184 targets. So, Davante Adams can get his without Hunter Renfrow losing significant targets. And, this is before we get into the fact that the offensive pie is likely to grow since Davante Adams is more talented than Ruggs, Jones, and Edwards combined.
So, am I concerned with Adams’ arrival? Sure. But those four players almost play a different position than Renfrow, as they all had an average depth of target of at least 14 yards downfield, and ranked 1-4 on the team in average depth of target. They were all the downfield guys, and they’re all gone. Renfrow, in contrast, ranked eighth on the team with an average depth of target just 6.5 yards downfield and Adams boasted a 9.0 aDOT on the Packers last season. Renfrow is the scrappy little slot guy for the Raiders, and coincidentally, former Patriots’ offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, who focused on guys like Wes Welker, Danny Amendola, and Julian Edelman, is the new head coach. I’m not super worried about Renfrow.
2022 Hunter Renfrow Fantasy Football Draft Strategy:
The drafting populous also isn’t too concerned about Renfrow, taking him as WR34, pick 80 overall. This puts him into a starting slot for a lot of squads who take him in twelve-team, three-receiver leagues, as one of the top-36 wide receivers off the board. I love him at that value, and I hope you do, as well, mostly because the value is the result of prognosticators manufacturing of targets away from Renfrow and toward Adams. The reality of the situation is that Renfrow and Adams occupy different parts of the route tree, and therefore the target volume. There shouldn’t be any real competition between them for targets, as they essentially play two different roles in the offense.
Because Renfrow is basically a shoo-in to repeat his startable rate from last year (12 of 17 games inside the top-36), he’s even crazier value in salary cap drafts, where his average salary is less than Tyler Lockett, who might get Drew Locked Up in the Seattle offense). There’s a perception shift that’s happened to Hunter Renfrow that you can use to your advantage in your drafts. Go ahead and do that.
Best Case Scenario:
Hunter Renfrow continues in the lineage of Josh McDaniels’ scrappy lunchpail 9-to-5er gym rat wide receivers and finishes top-20.
Worst Case Scenario:
Josh McDaniels switches everything up and instead focuses his offense on targets to Brandon Bolden and Ameer Abdullah, for some reason.
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[Statistics are sourced from pro-football-reference.com, airyards.com, and ftnfantasy.com]