For the second straight season, Kenny Golladay impressed football fans by hauling in 60+ catches, 1,000+ receiving yards, and 200+ fantasy points. Throughout his three years in the NFL, Golladay has steadily improved as a deep-threat receiver. This improvement is great for the Detroit Lions because Golladay is consistently emerging as one of the NFL’s best wideouts. If he can sustain this progress, he has a good chance of repeating as a top-ten WR.
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Last year, Kenny Golladay bolstered fantasy football teams with a second straight stellar statistical season. In the receiving game, he totaled 65 receptions for 1,190 yards, 11 touchdowns, and 248 fantasy points. Interestingly, Golladay was significantly more valuable in standard leagues than PPR leagues. In standard leagues, Golladay was the third-best wideout, but he was only the ninth-best ranking in PPR leagues.
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This variance between his standard and PPR rankings will likely continue into 2020. Golladay just isn’t a target hog who will absorb a 25%+ target share or 135+ targets. Instead, Golladay is a wideout who will create explosive plays and excel as a deep threat. He’ll still probably be reliable because of his presence in Detroit’s offense, but he will need a gunslinger like Stafford to ensure elite production every now and then.
While playing with 3 different QB, Kenny Golladay leads the NFL in receiving TD (11), is 3rd in yards/catch (18.0) and posted his second straight 1,000+ yard season. Another dominant year for him.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) December 26, 2019
Auction Value: $36
Similar to Keenan Allen, Kenny Golladay’s draft position is fair. He isn’t worth a first or early second-round pick because his current target and receptions numbers aren’t on par with elite WRs like Michael Thomas, Julio Jones, or De’Andre Hopkins. Although, he still excels at picking up intermediate and deep catches so the return on investment will provide fantasy managers with reliable tier two production. Plus, his explosive playing style makes him more likely to be a TD threat than other tiers two WRs. Therefore, he would be a solid selection, especially in the third round.
Kenny Golladay’s auction value is a fantastic investment. He is currently less expensive than Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, who will likely finish with similar reception totals as Golladay since they compete for targets in Tampa. Plus, unlike other receivers, he’s less likely to be negatively impacted by a poor record because Detroit passes way more often than other teams when they are trailing. Therefore he isn’t a matchup-dependent receiver.
It’s hard to envision Kenny Golladay’s floor dropping below top-ten status because he plays well regardless of who’s throwing to him. With QB Matthew Stafford at the helm, Golladay was averaging an impressive 80 receiving yards per contest. Even though he had a slight drop off when Stafford was injured, he was still a productive fantasy WR who averaged 68.8 receiving yards with other QBs. Golladay is still worth starting regardless of which QB plays, but you can expect his best games to come when Stafford is healthy.
Due to his low target share and reception totals, Golladay’s absolute floor will be a high-end tier-three WR in PPR leagues. These numbers will likely carry over into 2020 because Golladay ranked 26th in total target share last season and 28th during the 2018 season. Consequently, it would be wiser to add WR who hogs target share, such as Keenan Allen, if you are drafting in PPR leagues.
In standard leagues, Golladay has a better likelihood of being a tier-one receiver in standard leagues. Since he had the sixth-highest yards per target and 3rd highest yards per reception last season, he is dependable and efficient in standard formats. Although if Kenny can continue his receiving yardage success, he has a great opportunity to play like a high-end tier two WR in PPR leagues.
The best aspect of having Golladay on your roster is that he is neither matchup or QB dependent. Consequently, he will consistently play closer to his ceiling than his floor throughout the next season. Even though his explosive playing style might lead to two or three dud performances, he is certainly a more reliable deep-threat than players like Tyler Lockett.
Detroit Lions Offense
Early last season, Lions offensive coordinator, Darren Bevel sought to establish a run-pass balance that would make them more frequently run the ball. However, due to RB Kerryon Johnson’s injury and the fact that they were often trailing, the Lions remained pass-heavy and ran on less than 40% of their plays. As a result, 2019 marked just the fourth year in Darren Bevel’s 12-year career, where his passing offense ranked in the top ten. Although Detroit will probably return to a more run-oriented offense if they can maintain success.
With the draft approaching in less than ten days, the Lions could potentially make a splash with the third overall pick. Throughout the off-season, the Lions have been linked to QB prospect, Tua Tagovailoa. If Detroit drafts Tagovailoa, this could signal that Stafford’s time in Detroit is coming to an end. However, if this occurs, Stafford would probably play for the majority of the 2020 season. Although, if even Tua does start, his aggressive play-making skill-set should mesh well with Golladay.
Strength of Schedule
Heading into next season, Detroit’s divisional matchups could present challenges to Golladay’s fantasy value. For instance, Chicago’s secondary was top-ten against the pass, from both a box score and an advanced analytic perspective. Additionally, Minnesota and Green Bay Vikings might be difficult because their defensive efficiency was better than the stats indicate. Although, Kenny Golladay excels against tough secondaries so this shouldn’t hurt him too much.
Outside the division, Golladay is in line for a plethora of cakewalk games. The Cardinals and Buccaneers will most likely be the easiest contests because their secondaries were two of the three worst at stopping the pass. As a result, Kenny Golladay will be a must-start in those games. Moreover, the Titans, Texans, and Colts will also be easy contests because they were all generous to opposing passing offenses last season.
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