Bust to Lust is back for its second season. In this series, I will be looking at the positions of Quarterback, Running Back, Wide Receiver and Tight End.
As the title suggests it’s all about players that had a bust season in 2020 that have the potential for us to lust for in 2021.
First up I look at the Wide Receiver position.
The first Bust to lust in 2021, Campbell came into the league with some hype around him potentially being the next guy to step up in Indianapolis. Unfortunately many things derailed his 2019 campaign. Luck retired, Brissett wasn’t quite at the same level and Injuries didn’t help the rookie get going either.
I had Campbell down as a guy to look out for in 2020, after showing some promise in 7 games in 2019 and an upgrade at Quarterback for the 2020 season. Unfortunately once again Campbell was injured in week 2 and that was the end of his season.
In total Campbell played seven games in his rookie season in 2019. Catching 18 passes for 127 yards. 2020 saw just two games played as he picked up a PCL injury in week 2 and then got shut down for the rest of the season. The first game of the season looked very promising after being targeted nine times, catching six and taking those for 71 yards.
Granted, it’s not a sample size to go off but in that one game Campbell was targeted! He averaged 11.8 yards per reception and was averaging 8.8 yards before the catch. I highlight this because it shows a different part of his game that we didn’t see in his rookie year and a promising trait that links nicely with his new Quarterback.
In Campbell’s rookie year, of the 127 receiving yards he caught, 96 were after the catch. Averaging 5.3 yards after every catch. That was better than OBJ’s 4.4, Fantasy hero Michael Thomas’ 3.9 of 2019 and Brady’s New England go-to man, Edleman’s 3.2.
The one game in the 2020 season showed us a different side to Campbell. He averaged 8.8 yards before the catch which ended up seeing his yards after the catch average drop down to just 3 yards.
Campbell is in the right spot
In the 2020 season, I commented on how Rivers was the right QB for Campbell to thrive with due to his short pass and minimal average air yards per pass completion. For 2021 it looks good once again for Campbell even with a new Quarterback coming in called Wentz.
For the last three seasons, Wentz has averaged 7.7, 8 and 8.8 intended air yards. Yes, that’s a mixture of long, mid and short passes but when you marry that up with his average air yards completed this then drops down to an average of 6, 5.8 and 6.4 yards for the last three seasons.
This bodes well for Campbell. Campbell thrives off the short to mid rage passes and will be a welcome range for Wentz to get a completion off whilst learning the new Offence. An early wide receiver friend could end up being a solid full season friend. As long as Campbell can stay on the field.
The Hilton and Pittman factor
Since losing Luck, TY Hilton has also had a decline. When catching passes from Luck, Hilton averaged 6 yards after the catch following an average air yardage of 10.7. Showing us that Hilton produces better down the field.
Since then, Hilton averaged 6.4 yards before the catch in 2019, dropping Hilton’s production down to 4.7 yards after the catch. Which in 2019 was less than Campbell’s 5.3. Hilton did bring his average back up to 10.1 yards before the catch with Rivers in 2020 but the yards after reduced significantly down to 3.5.
Pittman, on the other hand, was the short-yardage guy Rivers used while Campbell was out injured. If all three are back and healthy, I see Pittman eating into Hilton’s production more than Campbells with the way Wentz likes to play, plus Pittman’s draft capital over Hilton’s reduction in production could see Hilton used a lot less.
Right now you are looking at getting Campbell at an ADP of 163 in a half ppr draft. That’s the Wide Receiver 63 off the board. That works out at around the middle of the 14th round in a 12 team league.
At this time of the draft, you are looking at filling your bench with hopeful prospects and players with potential upside. Instead of grabbing that kicker or DST that can be picked up off waivers and streamed, grabbing a talent like Campbell this late on could give you great fantasy value.
2020 was the year to forget but the easiest to remember for many people. Unfortunately, that goes for Broncos Wide Receiver Courtland Sutton too, as he played in just one game before he tore his ACL.
In that one game he was targeted 6 times, pulling in three catches for 66 yards. Giving him an average of 22 yards per catch In that one game. Granted one reception went for 45 yards but that then averaged the other two at 10.5 yards per reception which is still good going.
Sutton has the ability to make big plays which was highlighted by that 45 yard reception and the season before that, Sutton’s long was 70 yards. Sutton’s 2019 season was memorable for all the right reasons after making it to the Pro bowl. Sutton racked up 70 receptions for 1112 yards, averaging 15.4 yards per reception and pulled in six TD’s.
All this happened whilst dealing with a Quarterback carousel. Sutton started the season with Joe Flacco throwing him the ball but when Flacco was injured Brandon Allen stepped up as the new Quarterback. Just to add to the crazy season, rookie Quarterback Drew lock finished off the season.
Sutton has all the pedigree to be the lead man in this offence. Even with the likes of Sophomore star Jerry Juedy opposite taking his fair share. If anything, having both Sutton and Juedy together should be a positive. The opposition’s Defense will have both star receivers to deal with and trying to work out who to cover.
One thing that Denver still needs to work out is if their Quarterback Drew Lock is the man they think will be able to lead them. Drew didn’t get the best of opportunities with his key man out injured after one game and then having to rely on a fresh out the packet rookie.
Whatever Denver decides to do at the Quarterback position, one thing is for certain. Having the two star receivers on that team and another exciting talent in Tim Patrick is only going to be a massive plus for everyone involved. With all three taking the heat off each other, that can only mean great things for Sutton.
Right now Sutton is coming off the board at number 71. Which is around the end of the 6th round and the 28th Wide Receiver picked. Granted he is coming back after an injury in 2020 but in 2019 he finished the season as the 19th Wide Receiver for half point PPR putting him in the Wide Receiver 2 category.
Don’t forget he did this with three different quarterbacks throwing him the ball. He was only 13 points away from being a Wide Receiver 1. If you are going after Running Backs early in the draft and looking for a second Wide Receiver in and around the 6th round, Sutton could be a huge pick up. He offers the potential of solid Wide Receiver 2 production with the upside of Wide Receiver 1.
I feel like it’s been bust central for Beckham over the past few years. Issues at the Giants held him back and since being traded to the Browns it’s been hard for him to get into the swing of things.
The first year with the Browns had Beckham deal with a brand new system. Good Wide Receivers should be able to fit into new systems and still play well I hear you say. To an extent I agree, however, the Browns also had a brand new head coach to contend with.
Mayfield was also in his sophomore year and dealing with his 2nd head coach in as many years. Things didn’t stack up in favour of an easy transition for Beckham. 2020 had similar issues but one big issue stopped the season early.
Beckham started 7 games but unfortunately tore his ACL early in the Bengals games. For those 7 games he had a total of 319 yards 1 rushing TD and just 3 receiving TD’s. In the 7 games, Beckham only managed 2 games over 70 yards.
Both those games saw his only TD’s. He bagged 1 in week 2 when he went 74 yards. He then scored 3 TD’s in week 4 where he went for 81 receiving yards for 2 TD’s and 73 rushing yards and a rushing TD. Things did seem to be trending better than in previous seasons but it was cut short with the season ending injury.
As with Mayfields previous seasons in the NFL, the Browns had another new Head Coach running things in 2020. A new system to learn and in a time when a pandemic hit and reduced quite a lot of time to get the system running smoothly. By the time Beckham was done for the year the Browns were starting to click and finished the season well.
On the up
The 2021 season will be the third year for Mayfield and Beckham together. Things at the Browns seem to have turned a corner for the better. For the first season in Mayfields NFL career, he’s entering a second season with the same head coach and system.
That should mean things run a lot smoother for all involved. Better plays can be added and the Quarterback – Wide Receiver connection should be stronger knowing how the system works.
Beckham showed he still has it when he’s being fed the ball. If you give him the opportunity, he can make things happen. In a 4 game span, Beckham had 4 receptions in weeks 2 and 3 where he managed to go for 74 and 59 yards. Then in weeks 4 and 5, he had five receptions in each going for 81 and 58 yards. Not including the 73 rushing yards tagged onto week 4.
Right now Beckham’s ADP is the 66th player off the board which makes him the Wide Receiver 27. Beckham is just ahead of Sutton mentioned above, making Beckham a mid 6th round pick.
Granted Beckham is coming back after an ACL injury but you see Most ACL injuries fix well and have the player come back with no real issues.
On top of all that, the buzz in Cleveland after making the playoffs is something not to be forgotten. They have a good set up and a good set of players to back up last season with another good show. Bring all the factors mentioned above together, and Beckham could see himself have a much needed boost.
That is it Rush Nation, my Bust to Lust at the Wide Receiver position.
Next up is the Running Backs.
Until then, keep Rushing.
Pittsy – @PittsyNFL