SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 18: Miles Austin #19 of the Dallas Cowboys catches a touchdown over Madieu Williams #20 of the San Francisco 49ers and Carlos Rogers #22 at Candlestick Park on September 18, 2011 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
This week's Target Report includes several players who were targeted more in the second half of the 2011 season than they were in the first half, and one player who underperformed due to injury.
Here are a few facts about some of the players I will discuss today:
- One of the receivers had more targets than Jordy Nelson, Santana Moss and Jeremy Maclin in 2011.
- One receiver scored 5 touchdowns and had two 100+ yard receiving games in his last 7 games last season.
- One receiver scored touchdowns in 3 of his last 4 games of the season, and scored double digit fantasy points in half of his games played last season.
- One tight end was targeted more than Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez and Jason Witten in 2011, and has had 100+ targets in each of the last two seasons.
The five receivers who will outperform their ADP in 2012 after the jump:
1. Antonio Brown, PIT
Brown just signed a new 5 year deal with the Steelers, which means he is definitely in their plan for 2012. He had a breakout 2011 season, catching 69 of his 123 targets, for 1,108 yards, a 16.1 YPC, but just 2 touchdowns. He had 8 targets or more in 8 of his 16 games played last season. He could be targeted in the red zone more in 2012 now that Todd Haley has taken over the offense. His current ADP, according to Mock Draft Central, is 62.49, but he could easily outperform his ADP with a few more looks in the red zone.
2. Andre Roberts, ARI
Roberts was tied for second amongst Cardinals receivers in targets in 2011 with 98, but he was targeted 60 times in his last 8 games, but scored just two touchdowns. He had more targets in 2011 than Jordy Nelson, Jeremy Maclin and Santana Moss last season, but may have trouble repeating it with the Cardinals drafting Michael Floyd. Roberts has a slight advantage as he knows the offense, and could see more targets early in the season as Floyd learns the offense.
3. Miles Austin, DAL
Austin was slowed by several hamstring injuries last season, but when healthy, he produced. He played just 10 games, but scored 7 touchdowns, with three of the TDs coming in the last 4 games of the season. In addition, he scored double digit points in 5 of his 10 games. He was targeted 73 times last season, and I could see him targeted at least 120 times if he can stay healthy this season. His current ADP is 44.38, and I can see him outperforming his ADP in the Dallas pass happy offense.
4. Nate Washington, TENN
Washington scored 5 touchdowns in his last 7 games in 2011, and caught 74 of his 121 targets for 1,023 yards and a 13.8 YPC. He was a top 20 wide receiver in terms of touchdowns and fantasy points last season, and could be the main target in the Titans offense since Kenny Britt will almost certainly be suspended after his DUI arrest. His current ADP of 106.85 appears low to me.
5. Brandon Pettigrew, DET
Pettigrew was second amongst all tight ends with 126 targets in 2011, catching 83 balls for 777 yards and 5 touchdowns. He received more targets than Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez and Jason Witten last season, and has received 100+ targets in each of the last two seasons. What he has going for him is that his quarterback is Matt Stafford. With a healthy Stafford, you know the Lions are going to throw the ball. Pettigrew's current ADP is 100.36 and for some reason he is being drafted behind Redskins tight end Fred Davis.
Eric Decker, DEN
Reports indicate he and Peyton Manning are clicking in early training camp, so he is someone to watch in preseason games. His current ADP is 101.70, but if he can perform in preseason, he will shoot up draft boards because the Broncos didn't sign Manning to watch him hand the ball off 40 times per game.