NFL Free Agency Fantasy Fallout: DeAndre Hopkins in, David Johnson out, Kenyan Drake tagged in Arizona

Remember when we thought tagging Kenyan Drake was a big deal? I do, because I wrote 500 words about how he’d coexist with David Johnson. You can throw that out the window now because Cardinals somehow convinced the Texans to send them DeAndre Hopkins for Johnson. Yes there were draft picks involved too, but none of them are first-round picks, so this is still the kind of trade that might get you kicked out of a Fantasy league. But enough about Bill O’Brien. Let’s dive back into the Cardinals projections. 

This team was absolutely spectacular at producing Fantasy points from the running back position. and now Drake has all the opportunity he could ever ask for. He was a top-five back in the second half of 2019 and has that type of upside in 2020. I’m projecting him for 55% of the team’s rush attempts (20% goes to Kyler Murray) and 13% of their targets which comes out to 275 touches over 16 games. That’s still fewer touches per game than he saw in Arizona last year, but it’s enough to vault him into the top 12 of my PPR projections. 

The math is far more difficult for a DeAndre Hopkins projection. All statistical indication we have are that this is a downgrade for him. Kingsbury’s system really chopped targets up in college, and that was true last year as well. Kyler Murray isn’t as accurate as a passer (yet) as Deshaun Watson, but we’re still talking about one of the best receivers in the league. I am projecting a small decrease in Hopkins target share and a small decrease in his career efficiency. In Houston I had him projected for 96-1,175-8 on 142 targets. In Arizona that drops across the board, but it’s a very small drop because of uncertainty surrounding Kingsbury’s system and Murray’s growth as a passer.

Of course, the math is a lot worse for Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald. Here are the rest of the Cardinals projections as of March 16:

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