In the aftermath of Thursday’s trade that sent wide receiver Kadarius Toney from the New York Giants to the Kansas City Chiefs, there is plenty of intrigue to unpack about what type of role exists for the second-year wideout as he acclimates to his new digs. Could Toney potentially fill the shoes of the departed Tyreek Hill? Will quarterback Patrick Mahomes be quick to trust a new addition at the midway point of the 2022 NFL season?
While these hypotheticals are interesting to ponder, the situation Toney leaves behind is more intriguing, particularly as it pertains to a rookie who has come on in a big way as of late. Wan’Dale Robinson, the Giants’ second-round pick in 2022 out of the University of Kentucky, has been nothing short of a revelation for the Daniel Jones-led offense since returning from injury in Week 6.
According to 4for4, Robinson possesses a 22.2% target share that accompanies nine receptions and an average of 43.5 yards per game through the air over the last two weeks, categories in which the slot receiver leads the team in that span. Perhaps more impressively, Robinson has accomplished these feats with a route participation of only 55.9% in that time. In essence, he has become the primary receiver in an NFL offense in a matter of less than a month without being heavily involved. Wow.
Though historical precedent exists for a slot receiver to thrive in an offense schemed by head coach Brian Daboll, Robinson is performing above expectation. For context, Daboll was the Buffalo Bills’ offensive coordinator from 2018 to 2021 before becoming the head honcho in New York. Wide receiver Cole Beasley served as the primary slot receiver for the Bills in three of the four seasons Daboll was responsible for calling plays for that offense. In that time, Beasley averaged the 46th-most PPR points per game (11.99) and the 27th-most points overall per Stathead.
Why does this matter? At a minimum, Robinson is a flex consideration for fantasy managers, given what we know about what a slot receiver is capable of in a Daboll offense. However, the main difference between Buffalo and New York is that no Stefon Diggs, let alone Gabe Davis, equivalent exists on the Giants’ roster.
To illustrate this point, consider that Robinson only briefly appeared in Week 1 prior to succumbing to the knee injury that kept him out until October. Through Week 7, Robinson is the WR97 overall in PPR scoring per 4for4. Here is a list of where his teammates rank in that span, in descending order:
- Richie James (WR75)
- Sterling Shepard (WR81) [three games played before landing on IR]
- Darius Slayton (WR83)
- Kadarius Toney (WR158)
- Kenny Golladay (WR159)
If you take away nothing else from this analysis, understand that Wan’Dale Robinson finds himself in a once-in-a-blue-moon type of situation in which a player has waltzed in midseason to become the focal point of a passing attack with very little competition around to stop him. Currently available in 46% of Yahoo leagues and 25.9% of ESPN leagues, Robinson needs to be on your roster immediately. While his ceiling is merely hypothetical at this point, you are seemingly guaranteed to have a team’s WR1 available to you essentially for free amid bye weeks and the flurry of injuries to other players around the league.