Anthony Miller is the receiver so many analysts and fans have predicted to have a breakout season in 2020. After a mediocre first two seasons in the NFL, Miller has the tools to become a star wide receiver in the NFL. A former second-round pick, Miller just hasn’t reached his potential. Part of this stems from the poor quarterback play from Mitch Trubisky that limited this team’s offense and playoff aspirations. On the other hand, Allen Robinson’s emergence as a borderline top-15 receiver in the NFL has forced Miller to take a backseat in the offense. Lastly, the Bears’ lack of trust in Trubisky has lead head coach Matt Nagy to lean on the run game.
Given these issues the team has yet to address, specifically the quarterback situation, I don’t see a breakout season for Anthony Miller. While I do expect him to slightly improve on his 2019 numbers, I can’t find a scenario where he takes the leap from 600 yards to 900+ yards. He’s not in a winning situation, which will limit his fantasy impact.
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2019 was an improvement for Anthony Miller. In his second season, the receiver caught 52 passes for 656 receiving yards and 2 receiving touchdowns. He was an otherwise steady second option in a receiving unit dominated by fellow receiver Allen Robinson. What hurt Anthony Miller was consistency. Against the Lions in week 12, Miller flashed star power catching 9 passes for 140 yards. Miller backed this up once again in week 14 with 9 receptions for 118 yards. However, Miller had too many games where he disappeared from the field. In 6 games, Miller failed to record more than 1 reception for 10+ yards. The Bears showed that he wasn’t apart of the offensive gameplan throughout the season, and with the Bears having a few more offensive weapons, I worry that this will continue in 2020.
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Again, I don’t see Miller having this breakout season in 2020. The offensive line has a few weak points and the receiving core is more crowded than previous seasons. Second, Miller hasn’t been consistent week to week which makes me believe this will be an ongoing issue throughout his career. Additionally, the Bears failed to address the quarterback situation after Mitchell Trubisky’s regression in 2019. All these situations are working against Miller’s “breakout season”
Lineups agrees projecting Miller to finish 2020 with 57 receptions for 665 receiving yards and 4 receiving touchdowns. Fantasy-wise, Lineups expects Miller to finish with 148 fantasy points for 9.25 points per game. This is a quality season in the NFL, but below average for the wide receiver position in fantasy.
ADP: 117.9 WR: 48
Auction Value: $2
Fantasy owners are currently drafting Anthony Miller at an average draft position of 117.9, meaning he’s a late 11th round early 12th round player. I don’t mind the average draft position given, it shows that most fantasy owners are also not that high on Miller’s 2020 season. His ADP is currently grouped with Preston Williams, Golden Tate, Jerry Jeudy, and Jamison Crowder. In all honesty, I am fine with Anthony Miller going within this group. He has the potential to have better seasons than all these receivers and has a bit more upside to his game given the age. Drafting Miller as your fourth wide receiver is not a bad selection so I’m all for owners taking him in this draft range.
— Erik Lambert (@ErikLambert1) June 26, 2020
Anthony Miller has a high floor. He’s stayed relatively healthy his entire two seasons and improved beyond his rookie season. I also expect head coach Nagy to try and incorporate Miller into the offense on a consistent basis as Miller disappeared far too often in 2019. Miller is talented and should have no problem breaking 500+ yards. When drafting Miller, owners should expect to get that kind of production at the minimum.
Despite his high floor, I believe Miller has a very low ceiling. The wide receiver’s situation with new weapons, a below-average offensive line, and poor quarterback play will prevent his leap to rising star status. Other than having an otherworldly season, I don’t see any scenario besides injury where Miller can reach 900+ yards. However, at his ADP, you aren’t asking for that – instead, you are asking for big performances in several weeks throughout the season.
As alluded, the Bears offense is slightly improved from last year. The Bears signed veteran tight end Jimmy Graham and drafted top tight end prospect Cole Kmet in the 2020 draft. Also, Ted Ginn and Cordelle Patterson are still receiving threats on this team. David Montgomery is an emerging running back in the NFL. All these factors could inhibit Miller’s opportunities in this offense.
Also, the quarterback room does not look promising. Mitch Trubisky severely regressed, becoming a check-down machine while Nick Foles doesn’t offer much as a starting quarterback in the NFL. Without any changes to the quarterback room, I don’t see Miller improving.
Strength of Schedule
What works in the Bears and Miller’s favor is the easy schedule. With matchups against the Colts, Lions, Giants, Falcons, Panthers, Bucs, and Texans, some of the league’s worst defenses. This could elevate the offensive line and quarterback’s play. However, I don’t see it having too big of an impact of Miller given that he isn’t the number one wide receiver on this team. All the easy schedule does is improve his floor.
Overall, I’m not very high on Anthony Miller outside drafting him at his current ADP. Fantasy owners should not expect a breakout season. He’s got too many consistency issues with his own game as well an offense not designed for success. Mitch Trubisky and a suspect offensive line prevent me from drafting Miller any higher than what other fantasy owners are currently valuing him at. If Mitch Trubisky can realize his potential and have a bounce-back season, then I see Anthony Miller as a potential standout player in 2020. However, I’m very pessimistic that this situation happens. Instead, I see a quarterback change waiting to happen.