Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Cleveland Browns

2019 Coaching Staff

I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a team this optimistic after firing its coach mid-season the year prior and then ditching its interim coach. Funny what a sudden stockpile of elite players will do for the soul. It’s quite poetic how the team’s prospects have mirrored the meteoric rise of Freddie Kitchens, who somehow managed to go from starting last year as the running backs coach to starting this year as the head coach. While Kitchens does plan to retain the scheme he inherited from Todd Haley as well as play-calling duties, he did bring in former Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken to become his OC. Former Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks will come in as defensive coordinator.

Cincinnati Bengals v Cleveland Browns

What to Expect

As mentioned above, Kitchens plans to retain Todd Haley’s offensive scheme and continue calling plays. This means the Browns’ 2019 offense should look pretty similar to the 2018 version in structure. However, it’s hard to ignore the hiring of Todd Monken. Monken’s background is in the air raid offense, something he ran to great effect in Tampa Bay last year as the Bucs set franchise records left and right. These two minds creating a gameplan every week is scary enough for opponents, but what will really give defensive coordinators nightmares is the sudden influx of talent GM John Dorsey has brought in. Questionable off-field actions aside, pairing Kareem Hunt with Nick Chubb has to be the most lethal backfield duo in the NFL. Yet, you can’t stack the box to stop them unless you want Jarvis Landry, Odell Beckham, Jr., and David Njoku going to town on your secondary. It’s no exaggeration to say that the Browns could field the top offense in the NFL next year.

In fact, the only thing that might slow down Cleveland’s offense is Cleveland’s defense. Steve Wilks’s resume is a little short on coordinating experience – he had one year as defensive coordinator in Carolina and one year as head coach in Arizona, with moderate success at both on the defensive side of the ball – but if he’s worth his salt at all he’ll be able to make something of the solid defensive pieces the Browns have accumulated. The defensive line in particular almost rivals the Rams as the most talented in football. While the defense as a whole isn’t quite at the same level as the offense, there’s enough to work with that a good gameplan from Wilks could quickly turn games into one-sided affairs. This probably won’t happen every game, but it might be enough to slow down an otherwise torrid pace from the offense.

The Data

There’s no reason to sugar-coat this; the Browns are going to pass early and pass often. Under Kitchens last year, the Browns called a 60/40 pass/run split. Tampa Bay under Todd Monken was even more extreme at a 63/37 split. To be fair, Tampa had no defense and no running game worth mentioning, but nevertheless these are two very pass-happy coaches running the show in Cleveland. Despite this, I don’t expect the Browns to pass at a higher rate than last year. It appears to be the dawn of a new age in Cleveland, and if the Browns are leading more often than not then there’s little reason to suspect they won’t lean on the running game to chew up the clock. If the offense is more pass-happy but spends more time ahead, I would expect a very similar 60/40 split to last year.

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The positional target splits get more interesting. The Buccaneer wide receivers under Monken led the league in positional target share last year at about 67% while the Browns were just above average at about 58%. Reconciling this discrepancy will shape the Browns’ offense more than anything else this year. On the one hand, Monken’s influence will surely bump up the wide receiver target share from last year, and a wideout corps featuring OBJ and Jarvis Landry will demand targets. On the other, Tampa’s stable of running backs was pitiful and their starting tight end was injured halfway through the year, while the Browns boasted a surprisingly deep running back rotation and a rising star tight end in David Njoku. Cleveland’s wide receivers should see their target share creep up, but the sheer volume of talent across the offense should temper that growth.

Fantasy Impact

Cleveland’s offense figures to be explosive this coming year. It should look pretty similar to the offense they fielded last year, except relying a bit more on wide receivers. Any way you slice it though, you’ll want a piece of this offense.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 415 Attempts
Projected Passing: 385 Completions on 595 Attempts, 30 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 215 Receptions on 355 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 85 Receptions on 115 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 85 Receptions on 125 Targets

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Cincinnati Bengals

2019 Coaching Staff

After hanging onto the just-better-than-mediocre Marvin Lewis for what seemed like an eternity, the Bengals are finally cleaning house. The fact that it happened was expected (I think many Bengals fans would say overdue). The direction they went was not. While it is true that the current NFL coaching trend focuses on creative young minds who may not have so much experience, Cincinnati’s hire of Rams QB coach Zac Taylor took that philosophy to the extreme; Taylor has all of five games worth of pro-level offensive coordinator experience. For that matter, his coordinators aren’t exactly household names either; defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo served as the interim defensive coordinator on the same 2015 Dolphins squad that Taylor was offensive coordinator for, and Brian Callahan has never served as a coordinator at the pro level…or any level for that matter.

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What to Expect

With so little pro-level experience to draw from with the new coaching staff, it’s hard to say what we should expect from the Bengals. It’s almost a certainty that Taylor and Callahan will put their own spin on their scheme, but given that Taylor will hold play-calling duties it seems likely that the offense will be based on Sean McVay’s playbook. Don’t hold your breath for the same level of offense though; the Bengals have noticeable downgrades at almost every position on the offense, with the notable exception of A. J. Green.

While the offense may not be as effective as the Rams, they will likely be a higher volume offense. Anarumo will have his work cut out for him with a defense that just ranked dead last in the NFL in yards allowed and third worst in points allowed. He doesn’t have much talent to work with (outside of the defensive line) in his effort to improve it either. With all signs pointing to the defense struggling again, Taylor will likely run a bit more pass-heavy offense than his mentor McVay.

The Data

Assuming Taylor wants to emulate the Rams’ offense, it makes sense to take a look at what the Rams have been doing under McVay. In McVay’s first year as the Rams’ head coach, he called around a 55/45 pass/run split. This balance skewed a bit more pass-heavy in year two (up to a 57/43 split), but then that’s the difference between playing a 3rd place schedule and playing a 1st place schedule. The Bengals likely won’t have much defense to speak of – which will skew their play-calling a little more pass-heavy – but they will be playing a 4th place schedule. Also, while they might not have quite the same level of talent and depth as the Rams, they do have some blue chip pieces of their own; the 1-2 punch of Joe Mixon and Gio Bernard is not much of a downgrade from Gurley, and while Cincinnati can’t completely replicate the Kupp-Woods-Cooks/Watkins combo, they could do worse than A. J. Green and Tyler Boyd. It’s probably safe to say that the Bengals will only be a little more pass-happy than McVay’s year-one Rams, so we’re expecting around a 56/44 split.

NFL: Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals

The place where the depth concerns come in is determining positional target shares. The Rams have targeted their wide receivers a little more than 60% of the time under McVay. This is in no small part because the Rams’ base offense is 11 personnel with three wide receivers, but part of the reason they can play 11 personnel so frequently is that they’ve had three solid wideouts at all times. The Bengals have Green, Boyd…and that’s about it. The wide receiver target share should still go up a bit if Cincinnati does strive to emulate the Rams, but Cincinnati is more likely to give a few exotic looks given their strength at running back.

Fantasy Impact

There’s a lot of guesswork in trying to determine what the offense will look like under people with minimal experience designing offenses, but based on what we do know it will be based on Sean McVay’s Rams scheme. Implementing that offense could be a bit tricky given the difference in depth, not to mention the lack of defensive talent, so expect something akin to McVay’s scheme but leaning a little more pass-heavy.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 440 Attempts
Projected Passing: 340 Completions on 525 Attempts, 35 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 190 Receptions on 315 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 90 Receptions on 120 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 60 Receptions on 90 Targets

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Chicago Bears

2019 Coaching Staff

Well that was a surprise. Many expected first year head coach Matt Nagy to begin the turnaround from the John Fox disaster, but I’m not sure anyone expected the Bears to win the NFC North and come just a few doinks away from the second seed (or, you know, winning the wild card game). While it was a disappointing end to an otherwise miracle season, that doesn’t change the fact that it was an otherwise miracle season. Nagy unquestionably returns to one of the safest head coach seats in football, bringing offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich with him (though let’s be honest, this is Nagy’s offense and Helfrich is just along for the ride). Chicago unfortunately lose defensive coordinator Vic Fangio to the Broncos, though. He will be replaced by former Colts head coach Chuck Pagano.

NFL: Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers

What to Expect

Matt Nagy was brought in as a recognized QB guru to help shape the extremely inexperienced Mitchell Trubisky. While I’m sure that means that someday Chicago’s play-calling will lean more pass-happy, for now that means a strong running game that Trubisky can lean on as he develops. Regardless of whether Jordan Howard is kept or replaced, whoever is paired with Tarik Cohen in the backfield will be the heartbeat of the offense. Also helping Trubisky’s growth will be the continuity of the personnel; almost every 2018 day one starter will also be day one starters in 2019. With this in mind, it seems very likely that the 2019 Bears will look a lot like the 2018 Bears.

In fact, the most notable change with regard to how the offense will perform is actually a change on the defense. It’s tough enough having to follow up Vic Fangio’s top tier coaching, but Chuck Pagano’s resume feels particularly incomplete. Pagano has a pretty solid history as a secondary coach – and to his credit, those secondaries performed rather well on the whole – but he only spent a single season as the Ravens’ defensive coordinator before being scooped up as the Colts’ head coach. His one season in charge of the Ravens defense was great. His six years with the Colts? Not so much. Only once in those six seasons was Pagano’s defense in the top half of the league in yards allowed. The only plausible silver lining is that Pagano’s defense wasn’t a complete dumpster fire given how little talent GM Ryan Grigson was able to acquire. It’s tough to overlook six years of mediocrity when those were the last six years Pagano was in charge of anything, but given the circumstances and level of talent Pagano will get to field with the Bears defense, I’m inclined to believe that there shouldn’t be much dropoff.

The Data

While an argument can be made that Chicago will need to throw more than 2018 (Trubisky’s growth, tougher schedule, etc.), it’s also worth pointing out that the Bears were frequently forced to throw because the run game was that bad. The Bears started the season primarily running a gap blocking scheme, which was not the strength of the offensive line and certainly not the strength of primary back Jordan Howard. To that point, Howard only managed 2.9 YPC running behind a gap scheme last year. If your primary running back is getting less than 3 YPC, you’re going to have to pass if you want to maintain drives. What was lost in the shuffle though was that Chicago switched back to a zone scheme toward the end of the year, which Howard ran for 4.1 YPC behind. If the Bears keep that zone scheme (or if they bring in someone else more adept at running behind a gap scheme), they could easily run the ball more with better success. On balance, it seems likely that Nagy won’t stray much from the 54/46 pass/run play-call ratio he had last year.

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As mentioned above, the 2019 starting lineup will be almost identical to the 2018 lineup. If all the starters are the same and all the offensive coaches are the same, then it stands to reason that the target shares won’t change much either. The only thing that should really alter the balance is Trubisky’s own growth. In Trubisky’s first year under Nagy, he frequently only checked a single read before taking off. If Trubisky has a future in the NFL, he’ll need to do a better job of making it all the way through his progressions. Given that the shorter throws to running backs and tight ends were frequently the first read in an effort to build up Trubisky’s confidence and rhythm, more progressions will likely benefit the wide receivers the most.

Fantasy Impact

The Bears return almost all of their 2018 starting lineup in 2019, so the scheme shouldn’t change very much; we expect Chicago to continue to pass just a little more than they run, with a disproportionately large target share going to running backs thanks to Tarik Cohen. Ultimately, if there are any major changes, it will depend on Trubisky’s growth.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 475 Attempts
Projected Passing: 355 Completions on 520 Attempts, 35 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 185 Receptions on 290 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 100 Receptions on 130 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 70 Receptions on 100 Targets

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Carolina Panthers

2019 Coaching Staff

The Panthers finished a disappointing 7-9 last season, but don’t let the record fool you. After all, it’s rather difficult to win when your star QB spends half the season physically unable to throw the deep ball. The Carolina brass certainly was not dissuaded as it stayed the course with long-time head coach Ron Rivera. Norv Turner was also kept on as offensive coordinator as he managed to find reasonable success despite the handicapped QB.

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What to Expect

The fascinating thing about the last three Panther offensive coordinators is that they all basically run the same offense. Sure there are some personal tweaks here and there, but Rob Chudzinski, Mike Shula, and Norv Turner all run an Air Coryell offense that features a power running game and deep shots down the field. After all, what else would you run with a cannon-armed QB who runs as well as any running back?

Of course, the caveat of having a premier dual-threat QB is that he’s going to take a beating, which is precisely what sunk the Panthers’ season. After nine weeks, the Panthers were sitting pretty on a 6-2 record. In week 10, though, Newton took a shot to his throwing shoulder, aggravating an injury that had been nagging him since week 7. The result? Seven straight losses as Newton was suddenly unable to push the ball down the field, a rather important aspect of a scheme that relies heavily on vertical routes. Turner will have to do a better job of protecting his QB if he hopes to revive the Panthers offense. The good news is that Newton will be at full health for the start of the new season. With a healthy Newton, a rising star in Christian McCaffrey, and an up-and-coming wide receiver corps, the Panthers should field one of the more explosive offenses in 2019.

The Data

The exact balance of passing plays vs. running plays is a bit tough to predict for the Panthers offense. Norv Turner has frequently adjusted the balance to match his team’s strengths, so there’s no clear cut answer there. Even assuming he calls plays similarly to his predecessors in Carolina doesn’t give a definitive answer at first glance as the ratios bounce all over the place. When you start to dig though, there is one thing that sticks out; the Panthers throw the ball a lot more when Newton isn’t healthy. This past season, the Panthers ran pass plays almost 59% of the time. In 2016, when Newton was playing with a partially torn rotator cuff, the Panthers passed 57% of the time. The Carolina pass percentages in 2015 and 2017 with a healthy Newton? 50% and 52%, respectively. Injuries are tough to predict, which makes this part of the projections particularly tricky. Complicating the issue is that star running back Christian McCaffrey is just a little smaller than you’d like a feature back to be at 205 lbs, and the Panthers don’t have a good 1B option behind him. Ultimately, a healthy Newton means more running plays, but the ratio might not drop all the way back down to a 50/50 split. Expect more of a 53/47 pass/run ratio.

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The other interesting dynamic at play is the turnover at the skill positions for Carolina. For a while, the Panthers passing attack was dominated by Steve Smith out wide and Greg Olsen up the seams, while Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams split the backfield. Steve Smith gave way to a short era featuring Kelvin Benjamin, but for the most part Newton’s supporting cast was pretty stable. This has not been the case the last couple of years; the wide receiver corps has gotten much younger and now boasts several new faces, Greg Olsen has struggled to stay on the field due to foot injuries (and has looked like a ghost of his old self when he does play), and the two-headed backfield has been replaced by do-everything back McCaffrey. With all the change, target shares have been fluctuating wildly as everyone jockeys for position in the new order. Predicting how it will turn out will be difficult, but there are a couple things we can keep in mind.

First, Christian McCaffrey received a huge boost when Newton hurt his shoulder. Through week 10, McCaffrey was averaging 6 receptions per game. From weeks 11-16, that number skyrocketed to 8.7. If Newton stays healthy, McCaffrey will struggle to replicate his record-setting pace from last year.

Second, the likelihood that Olsen comes back fully healthy at this point seems slim, but if he does he could easily command a huge target share. Carolina tight ends have been targeted well under 20% of the time while Olsen has struggled with injuries the last two seasons. Before that though, Olsen pushed the group to target shares as high as 30%.

Finally, the wide receiver corps is very young and still has much to improve on. D. J. Moore in particular led all Panther wideouts in targets despite being a rookie. Second year receiver Curtis Samuel also really started to heat up toward the end of the year after struggling with injuries to start his career. If the group continues to improve, it will be difficult to deny them targets. The group is still going through changes though as “veteran” (relatively speaking) receiver Devin Funchess is being allowed to leave in free agency.

Fantasy Impact

If Newton can stay healthy, the Panthers offense should return to a more run-heavy approach. It’s hard to envision a scenario where McCaffrey isn’t peppered with targets, but the degree to which that happens depends on the health of Olsen and the growth of Moore and Samuel.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 475 Attempts
Projected Passing: 320 Completions on 505 Attempts, 35 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 160 Receptions on 280 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 95 Receptions on 125 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 65 Receptions on 100 Targets

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Buffalo Bills

2019 Coaching Staff

There’s some coaching continuity in Buffalo for a change. Despite a down year in terms of standings, head coach Sean McDermott was retained due to the promise the Bills showed on the field. Namely, the defense was surprisingly effective and rookie QB Josh Allen routinely put the offense on his back. More importantly for our purposes, offensive coordinator Brian Daboll was retained to continue working with Allen, hopefully turning him into the franchise QB Buffalo drafted him to be.

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What to Expect

The key in Buffalo is fixing the offensive line. The Bills bled talent from their O-line during the offseason and it showed as PFF ranked the Bills’ O-line 26th by the end of the season. Josh Allen was constantly under pressure and the line couldn’t open holes for the running game to take pressure off him. That’s not an easy thing to deal with for veteran QBs, but it’s especially tough on a rookie QB who isn’t known for finesse and doesn’t have much in the way of receiving talent to throw to. The Bills have hired a new offensive line coach to try to address the issue, but they’ll need some more talent at the line positions as well. Failure to fix the issue will end with Allen on his back and the coaching staff out the door.

Improving the O-line enough so that Allen isn’t constantly running for his life will also be critical for Daboll to run his preferred scheme. Daboll hasn’t spent much time as an NFL offensive coordinator – certainly not much recently, at least – but what little data there is on him shows dedication to the running game; his offenses finished outside the top 6 in rush attempts only once in five years, but never finished better than 28th in pass attempts. For that matter, his passing game isn’t even very efficient as it has only recorded a yards per attempt number better than the bottom 25% once. His running game is a little better – typically around the middle of the pack – but it has still been rather inconsistent across his coaching career. This is a little alarming as the top two RBs on the roster are both on the wrong side of 30 and both coming off the worst years of their respective careers. The defense should give the offense plenty of chances, but the Bills need to surround Allen with a lot more talent before the offense will be able to begin pulling its weight.

The Data

Before last year, Daboll’s previous stint as an NFL OC was with the Chiefs back in 2012. While we can glean some insight from looking at his offenses back then, it’s a wide enough gap that we will primarily be considering Daboll’s offense with the Bills last year. Despite being known as a run-first coordinator, the Bills actually only had 468 rush attempts last year against 540 passing plays (including 41 sacks) under Daboll, approximately a 54/46 pass/run ratio. That doesn’t account for the fact that Allen was the team’s leading rusher on the season, so it’s fair to say that Daboll actually called an even higher percentage of pass plays. Which way that ratio goes from here depends on what kind of talent the Buffalo front office can surround Allen with. I’m sure Daboll would love to take some pressure off Allen and return to his preferred run-heavy approach, but that would require either a late-career resurgence from LeSean McCoy or new blood at the running back position, not to mention the improvements required along the offensive line. Given where the team roster stands right now, it seems likely that the pass/run ratio isn’t dipping any lower than last year.

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It also seems likely that the wide receivers will continue to dominate targets in the passing game. Last year, Buffalo wide receivers were targeted about 60% of the time while the running backs and tight ends both saw a little under 20%. There is an argument to be made that the tight end group was just young and that there will be improvement moving forward, but no one in the group looked like a future star. The running backs are on the opposite end of the spectrum in age, and both spent time injured last year. They could see improvement this season with some better health, but both McCoy and Chris Ivory have reached the dreaded big 3-0. It’s fair to think that their bodies could be breaking down (especially Ivory, who has been a bit injury-prone his whole career). Meanwhile, Zay Jones and Robert Foster aren’t exactly household names at the wideout position, but both certainly proved to be capable this past year. Allen’s penchant for throwing deep also adds to the wide receiver target share. Unless there are some significant personnel changes in Buffalo, expect Jones and Foster to continue to anchor the passing game.

The final point worth noting is the effect Kelvin Benjamin had on Josh Allen’s accuracy and the catch percentage of the wide receiver group as a whole. Despite finishing solidly as the second most targeted player on the Bills, Benjamin finished fourth in receptions with a pitiful 37.1% catch rate. With him in, the wide receivers only compiled a 51.4% catch rate. Without him, the group catch rate rose to 55%. Make of that what you will, but I think Allen will see at least a little improvement in that area with Benjamin gone.

Fantasy Impact

Buffalo has a strong defense that, in theory, should provide the offense with plenty of attempts and complement Brian Daboll’s run-first approach. In practice, the Buffalo front office has to fill holes across the offense if they hope to see any real improvement. Any notable acquisitions could alter the balance, but for now it seems likely that the Bills will enter 2019 with a very similar offense to what they had last year.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 465 Attempts
Projected Passing: 305 Completions on 505 Attempts, 40 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 175 Receptions on 310 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 65 Receptions on 95 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 65 Receptions on 100 Targets

Updates

Update 1: The Bills have been active early in free agency. In addition to a couple of defensive moves, the Bills signed RB Frank Gore and TE Tyler Kroft. Gore shouldn’t have much impact on how the team operates (quite frankly I’m not sure what prompted the Buffalo front office to sign yet another 30+ year old back), but Kroft might. Kroft had some success as Tyler Eifert’s backup in Cincinnati, and his surprisingly large contract (up to $21 million over 3 years) indicates that Buffalo has a particular role in mind. Most of Kroft’s production will probably come at the expense of the tight ends already on the roster, but don’t be surprised if he siphons off some of the running backs’ target volume.

Update 2: Buffalo’s early involvement in free agency continues as they welcome new receivers Cole Beasley and John Brown. There still isn’t a true #1 wide receiver on the roster, but it’ll be tough to defend the sheer volume of #2 receivers the Bills have accumulated. Surrounding Josh Allen’s cannon arm with wideouts also would indicate a bit more willingness to fire downfield.

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Baltimore Ravens

2019 Coaching Staff

There was some speculation earlier in the year that head coach John Harbaugh was on the hot seat after a slow start. A quarterback switch later and Harbaugh gets a nice extension instead. His offensive coordinator was not so fortunate. Marty Mornhinweg’s tenure as the Ravens’ offensive coordinator was marred by inconsistency. His offense struggled to pick up yards more often than not, and the surprisingly high points scored numbers were bolstered significantly by some of the best starting field position in the league (courtesy of the Ravens defense).

cs5kq5eocpl3pubjegxuWith Mornhinweg opting to leave instead of taking a demotion, Greg Roman will take his place after being promoted from his previous position as tight ends coach and run game coordinator.

What to Expect

Seeing as how the Ravens offense finally hit its stride when they started running the ball more, there is reason for optimism after putting the run game coordinator in charge of the whole offense. Roman’s coaching history fits the bill as well. In six seasons as offensive coordinator of the 49ers and Bills, Roman’s teams rarely threw the ball, never finishing higher than 29th in pass attempts. However, they’ve only finished outside the top 3 in rush attempts twice, and never outside the top 10. More importantly, Roman’s offenses run with volume and efficiency; his teams have finished outside the top 5 in yards per carry only twice in six years. With a mobile QB like Lamar Jackson and a veritable army of running backs and tight ends, this offense should continue to focus on the run game.

Speaking of Jackson, Roman might be the perfect coordinator to mold the raw-but-talented Jackson into a true NFL quarterback. After all, this won’t be the first time that Roman gets to take advantage of a dual-threat QB; his previous stops featured Tyrod Taylor and Colin Kaepernick.  There is some risk that Jackson’s inexperience could make the offense rather one-dimensional and predictable – the primary reason for the playoff collapse against the Chargers – but, then again, is that really all that different from Kaepernick’s early years? Besides, a strong running game is a defense’s best friend. Given how tough the Ravens’ defense already is, a clock-chewing running game will allow the stingy Baltimore defense to hide mistakes from Jackson’s growing pains.

The Data

As mentioned above, Greg Roman really emphasizes a strong running game. His offenses have typically finished with right around a 50/50 pass/run ratio, and it hasn’t exactly been uncommon for his teams to finish with noticeably more rush attempts than pass attempts. This is a major departure from the classic west coast pass-heavy style that previous coordinator Mornhinweg liked to run, but it’s a change that makes sense. The Ravens boast a deep stable of running backs in addition to their new dual-threat QB and wide selection of high-pedigree tight ends. Meanwhile, they enter 2019 with their top wide receiver being…Willie Snead? Gee, why are they focusing on the run game?

With this in mind, it’s likely that Roman will de-emphasize the wide receiver position compared to what he’s called in the past. While in Buffalo and San Francisco, Roman’s wideouts typically saw target shares between 55-60% with a high water mark of 71%. Given the extreme lack of wide receiver talent in Baltimore compared to the other skill positions, Roman’s scheme should bend a bit and drop the wideout target share to the lower 50% range, possibly as low as 50% depending on how the Ravens approach free agency and the draft. I would expect the tight end group to pick up the slack. Historically, Roman’s tight ends have seen target shares in the mid-20% range. Baltimore’s group has more depth than anything Roman has had to work with before, and his promotion to offensive coordinator was from the tight end position coach so he should be particularly familiar with this group. It’s not far-fetched to think that the Baltimore tight ends could reach a 30% target share next year.

NFL: Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns

The last consideration to make when looking forward to the coming year is the number of plays the offense will run. Under Mornhinweg, the offense was frequently near the top of the league in plays run. In fact, they led the league in that category last year (1135). Going off Roman’s history, expect the Ravens to slow it down a bit this year. The Bills offense under Roman ran about the league average number of plays (just a hair over 1000 plays in both 2015 and 2016), while the 49ers matched that twice and actually dipped all the way down to the 960 range twice.

Fantasy Impact

In a league that has progressively become more pass-centric, the Ravens will be dialing it back with a punishing run game and stout defense. Of the passes that Baltimore does throw, the tight ends should command a rather large share given the depth at the position and lack of depth at wide receiver. However, someone has to catch the ball out wide, so there’s some sleeper potential for those willing to take the risk.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 500 Attempts
Projected Passing: 300 Completions on 480 Attempts, 35 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 135 Receptions on 245 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 70 Receptions on 95 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 95 Receptions on 140 Targets

Updates

Update 1: Free agency is hitting the Ravens defense hard. Four key starters (Eric Weddle, C. J. Mosley, Za’Darius Smith, & Terrell Suggs) signed elsewhere, leaving gaping holes in the Baltimore defensive lineup. I have faith that defensive coordinator Don Martindale can continue to coach up a high-level defense, but his job just got a lot tougher watching all that talent walk out the door. We’ve adjusted our offensive projections to slightly favor the passing game.

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Atlanta Falcons

2019 Coaching Staff

Dan Quinn returns as head coach, but just by the skin of his teeth. It wasn’t all that long ago that the Falcons took the league by storm en route to a Super Bowl appearance, albeit one with an unfortunate result. Sadly, they just haven’t been able to put it together since. The defense held together the following year, but the offense just couldn’t repeat the magic sans Kyle Shanahan. Last year, Steve Sarkisian finally managed to piece the offense back together, but the defense was absolutely ravaged by injuries.

In a bid to hold his job, Dan Quinn decided to start over fresh by firing all his coordinators. Quinn himself will take over defensive play-calling while Dirk Koetter returns from a stint as the Tampa Bay head coach to resume his old roll as offensive coordinator.

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What to Expect

What we learned during Koetter’s run as Tampa Bay’s head coach is that he might not be the best head coach out there (though his front office didn’t do him any favors with a talent-deficient defense), but he does know his way around an offense. In fact, his tenure in Tampa really just looked like a microcosm of his entire career. Sometimes he has a stud running back with no passing game worth mentioning. Sometimes he has a high-flying passing attack with a patchwork backfield. No matter what he’s working with, however, he finds a way to make his offense work. This time, he faces a mandate to keep the Falcons’ existing blocking scheme while implementing his own playbook. There will be some challenge with that, but Koetter has proven flexible in the past.

What’s particularly interesting in this case is that Koetter already has experience working with his “new” QB. Back in 2012, Matt Ryan was just coming off an impressive 4th year in the league. He was certainly showing promise, but still needed just a bit more to make the leap to elite status. Koetter came in and gave him that push, leading to a prolific stretch for the Falcons’ offense. Unfortunately, the Falcons were weighed down by a complete lack of defense during Koetter’s run, which led to the release of the entire coaching staff after the 2014 season.

This time around, Matt Ryan is already established as one of the premier passers in the league and is surrounded by weapons to throw to. Devonta Freeman’s injury history and the loss of Tevin Coleman aren’t good for the running game, but Ito Smith looked good in limited usage last year. Overall, this should be the most talented backfield Koetter has had to work with since his time with Maurice Jones-Drew. Koetter should be able to hit the ground running, and Atlanta’s offense should continue to chug along without missing a beat. The only concern is the possibility of a defensive resurgence. Keep in mind, the Falcons’ defense looked pretty good in 2016 and 2017 before getting decimated by injuries last year. If the defense returns to form, it may limit the volume of the offense.

The Data

Koetter’s coaching history is a bit of a mixed bag in terms of pass/run ratio. He’s rarely had talent in both the running and passing games at the same time, so his offenses tend to end up heavily focused on one or the other. His first two years with the Buccaneers sported a fairly typical 55/45 pass/run ratio as Koetter leaned heavily on Doug Martin to ease his young QB Jameis Winston into the NFL. Going back further, he actually called more run plays than pass plays a few times while with the Maurice Jones-Drew-led Jaguars. On the flip side, he racked up well over a 60/40 pass/run ratio during his latter two years in Tampa (didn’t have a true lead back) and his original stint in Atlanta (slew of past-their-prime running backs). The 2019 Falcons clearly have a higher concentration of talent in the passing game, but there should be enough talent in the running game to keep the passing game from tilting that ratio even more. We expect right around a 60/40 split.

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For that 60% of the plays going to the air, it seems likely that the vast majority of those will be targeting wide receivers. Koetter’s air attack relied heavily on wideouts in Tampa; the group only dropped below a 60% target share once in four years, and its 67% target share last year actually led the league. It’s fair to say that those numbers might have been influenced by the Bucs’ abundance of wideout talent, but then it’s not like the Falcons are too far off. In fact, there’s a pretty solid argument that Koetter is working with basically the same pieces across the entire starting lineup; Mike Evans to Julio Jones, DeSean Jackson/Chris Godwin to Calvin Ridley, Adam Humphries to Mohamed Sanu, O. J. Howard to Austin Hooper, and Chris Sims to Ito Smith. The point of this being that looking at the Tampa Bay offense from the past few years is probably a better sneak peak at the 2019 Atlanta offense than one would think. Compiling the last 3 years, the Bucs’ wideouts typically own between 60-65% of the targets, the tight ends are usually around 20%, and the running backs take in only around 15%.

Fantasy Impact

While a healthy defense may dampen the volume of the aerial attack, the Falcons will most likely still be a pass-happy team. It’s not unreasonable to think that Matt Ryan may join the 5000-yard season club, but even if he doesn’t this will be a good offense to own some pieces from.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 410 Attempts
Projected Passing: 385 Completions on 575 Attempts, 40 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 245 Receptions on 380 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 70 Receptions on 95 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 70 Receptions on 100 Targets

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Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Arizona Cardinals

2019 Coaching Staff

No one really expected the Cardinals to do well last year, but somehow the Cards managed to fall short of the low bar set for them. The Steve Wilks era lasted all of one year, with offensive coordinator Mike McCoy not even lasting that long after being fired following a week 7 beatdown at the hands of the Broncos. Interim OC Byron Leftwich couldn’t do much better, which isn’t necessarily surprising given the lack of talent outside of David Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald.

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The Cardinals look to the 2019 season with new head coach Kliff Kingsbury – who was just fired from Texas Tech – to tutor Josh Rosen and hopefully turn him into the franchise QB Arizona drafted him to be. Kingsbury will be his own offensive coordinator while Vance Joseph will run the defense after being fired from his position as the Broncos head coach.

What to Expect

There are questions about Kingsbury’s ability to be an NFL-caliber head coach. After all, what was the Arizona front office thinking when they signed a coach who went 35-40 at the college level? However, keep in mind that recruiting is a big part of being a college coach; if you have a team stacked with future NFL talent playing against Division III Podunk University, Bill Belichick himself would have troubles pulling off the upset. Suffice to say that Kingsbury was not adept at recruiting while at Texas Tech. His recruiting classes rarely strayed from the mid-40s rankings, which is on the low side for a major Big 12 school.

Fortunately for him, recruiting isn’t his job with the Cardinals. His job will only be to coach. There might still be some questions about his ability to be a head coach – which may limit his longevity at the NFL level – but there’s not much negative you can say about his ability to scheme an offense. During his tenure at Texas Tech, the Red Raiders never fell out of the top 20 in total offense and never fell out of the top 10 in passing offense. While it is true that his best years came with Patrick Mahomes at the helm, his offenses ran just fine while talent-deficient as well. This is important on a team like the Cardinals, and gives some hope that Arizona might provide some fantasy relevance in 2019. If nothing else, one of the byproducts of Kingsbury’s air raid offense is the tendency for lots of plays, yards, and high-scoring games. Essentially, we may be looking at something of a Kansas City-lite.

The Data

Kingsbury’s offenses at Texas Tech spent most of their time around a 60/40 pass-run ratio, though this dropped to more of a 55/45 ratio toward the end of his tenure. While the air raid offense certainly lends itself to a pass-heavy split, a very weak defense also played a part in that. Proportionately, the Cardinals have far more talent on defense than Kingsbury ever worked with at the college level. However, DC Vance Joseph has an inconsistently mediocre record between his one season as the Miami defensive coordinator and two seasons as Denver head coach. The Cardinals’ NFC West opponents won’t make Vance’s job any easier either; the Rams are NFC favorites, and the Seahawks and 49ers are no slouches themselves. Arizona is likely to frequently find themselves trailing, which will lead to more pass-heavy game scripts.

Arizona Cardinals v San Francisco 49ers

Of course, the real question is where will all those passes be going? If Kingsbury’s time at the college level is any indication, the answer is mostly wide receivers. A whopping 78% of all Texas Tech completions in the Kingsbury era went to wideouts. Running backs brought in a respectable 17%, but tight ends saw less than 5% of all completions during that time (almost all of which came during the 2013 season when Jace Amaro led the team in receiving). This type of split is unlikely to continue in Arizona due to the dearth of wide receiver talent, but it still provides insight as to the type of scheme Kingsbury likes to run. The biggest difference we’re likely to see as he adjusts his offense for the NFL is that the running back split should noticeably increase. After all, if your offense features one of the best receiving backs in the NFL while also lacking receiver talent, it makes sense that your running back will see a few more targets than usual.

Also worth considering; the Cardinals offensive line gave up the 5th most sacks in the NFL last year. Unless Arizona can find some significant upgrades to the O-line either through free agency or the draft, I don’t see any reason for that to improve. Yes, Kingsbury’s scheme should be better, but if the offensive line is still bad and you’re still throwing the ball a ton then you’re still inviting a beatdown on your QB.

Fantasy Impact

Arizona will be running a pass-happy offense while likely playing from behind more often than not. The bulk of those throws will likely go to wide receivers, but keep an eye out for a prolific receiving year for RB David Johnson to cover some of the talent deficiency plaguing the Cardinals.

Projected Team Rush Attempts: 420 Attempts
Projected Passing: 335 Completions on 555 Attempts, 50 sacks allowed
Projected WR Catches: 200 Receptions on 345 Targets
Projected RB Catches: 90 Receptions on 135 Targets
Projected TE Catches: 45 Receptions on 75 Targets

Return to Team List

Fantasy Opportunity Breakdown: Team List

Everyone likes to talk about how great players are, how much potential they have, and therefore how good they’ll be in fantasy. In a perfect world, they’d be correct. However, success isn’t just a bunch of skill with a dash of luck; players still need the opportunity to perform if they hope to get any production. So the question is, how do players get more opportunities? While it is true that certain levels of skill simply demand the opportunity to make plays, most players are dependent on the scheme. No matter how good your running back is, he just isn’t going to be that good on a team that only runs the ball 10-15 times per game. Conversely, if you’re Tom Brady’s slot receiver, chances are you’re in for a good year.

With scheme being so critical, you can’t project your players until you understand their coaches. Now that the offseason coaching carousel has made its rounds, it’s time to dive back into the wonderful world of fantasy football. Listed below are links to our Fantasy Opportunity Breakdowns for all 32 teams. Each one delves into the tendencies of the coaching staffs to project how many rush attempts, pass attempts, and receptions by position group each team will have. While we won’t fully dig into individual players just yet, this will provide the basis for determining how many touches we expect players to get and, by extension, where there may be over-saturation (leading to busts) or vacuums (leading to sleepers).

We’ll be updating the links as we go, so if a link isn’t there yet check back later.

Arizona Cardinals
Atlanta Falcons
Baltimore Ravens
Buffalo Bills
Carolina Panthers
Chicago Bears
Cincinnati Bengals
Cleveland Browns
Dallas Cowboys
Denver Broncos
Detroit Lions
Green Bay Packers
Houston Texans
Indianapolis Colts
Jacksonville Jaguars
Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Chargers
Los Angeles Rams
Miami Dolphins
Minnesota Vikings
New England Patriots
New Orleans Saints
New York Giants
New York Jets
Oakland Raiders
Philadelphia Eagles
Pittsburgh Steelers
San Francisco 49ers
Seattle Seahawks
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tennessee Titans
Washington Redskins

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Awards: Winners, Review, and Analysis

Yes, folks, it’s that time of year. It’s the time of year where the NFL turns the page into playoff football and caps off a season of terrific regular season football. When the playoff bracket is unveiled after the results from Week 17, we will be able to make our playoff predictions. But for now, many of the staff at Pro Sports Fandom collaborated on this beautiful project. Welcome to the 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Awards! We all submitted ballots and are ready to unveil the award winners for this season. From the MVP to the Play of the Year, we’ve got you covered. Now let’s sit back and enjoy as we look back at what a great regular season of NFL football it was! Before we get underway, I’d like to issue a special thanks to each of the following writers who participated in voting. You should give them a follow on their respective Twitter accounts! Thanks! We hope you enjoy!

  • Tristan Beckmann: @TBeckmann24
  • Eric Jensen: @eric18utah
  • Ian Cusick: @IanMCusick
  • Chris Chastain: @ChrisC_01
  • Brian Willis: @RealBrianWillis
  • Obstructed Viewer: @obstructedview2
  • Alex Levin: @TubaDeus

Now without further ado, let’s get into the awards!

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year is…

New York Giants RB Saquon Barkley

Why: Barkley’s gap over the field may have slimmed considerably due to the recent play of Baker Mayfield, but he’s just been way too good for him to not win this award. Barkley has been the kind of generational talent that the Giants expected him to be when they picked him at number two in the 2018 NFL Draft. He’s nearing 1,200 rushing yards, has scored 10 rushing touchdowns, while making an impact in the passing game, catching 87 passes for 688 receiving yards and 4 touchdowns.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Browns QB Baker Mayfield, Broncos RB Phillip Lindsay, and Colts OG Quenton Nelson.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year is…

Indianapolis Colts OLB Darius Leonard

Why: How on earth did Darius Leonard fall to the second round in the 2018 NFL Draft? I find myself asking the same question frequently. Leonard has been a freak on the Colts defense, and is one of the big reasons for their success. The South Carolina State alum has played in 14 games, racking up 155 combined tackles, 8 QB hits, 12 tackles for loss, 7 sacks, 2 fumble recoveries, and 1 interception. Those are ridiculous numbers and they’ve pushed him over Derwin James in the Defensive Rookie of the Year race.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Chargers SS Derwin James, Cowboys OLB Leighton Vander Esch, and Broncos EDGE Bradley Chubb.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Game of the Year is…

Kansas City Chiefs @ Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football in Week 11.

Why: One of the greatest NFL games in recent memory, the Chiefs and Rams battle in Week 11 on Monday Night Football was an absolute showcase for the whole family. It was a shootout as we witnessed the future of the NFL collide in quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes II and Jared Goff. The two heavyweights slugged it out until the Rams used some fourth quarter turnovers by Mahomes to pull away victorious in a 54-51 thriller. This was an easy pick for the Game of the Year award.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Bears @ Packers in Week 1, Rams @ Saints in Week 9, Chargers @ Chiefs in Week 15.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Play of the Year is…

The Miami Dolphins Miracle Last Second Touchdown versus the New England Patriots.

Why: Down by five with seven seconds to play, the Miami Dolphins had virtually zero chance to walk away victorious in a Week 13 battle with their division rival New England Patriots. Ryan Tannehill threw a 16 yard pass to Kenny Stills, who threw a lateral to DeVante Parker. Parker quickly tossed a lateral to running back Kenyan Drake, who broke a tackle before running back into the middle of the field. Drake used some quick cuts to beat out Rob Gronkowski and score the miraculous game-winning touchdown as time expired.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Patrick Mahomes II left handed throw versus the Broncos, Derrick Henry’s 99 yard touchdown run against the Jaguars, and Baker Mayfield’s 2 point conversion catch against the Jets.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Most Valuable Player is…

Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes II

Why: The internet constantly drools over this kid, and he undoubtedly deserves it, which is why he’s the favorite for NFL MVP. He’s taken the league by storm in his first season as a full time starter and is just as “Showtime” as his nickname describes him. He’s led the Chiefs to a 11-4 record and likely a first round bye if they beat the Raiders on Sunday. Mahomes has completed 66.4% of his passes for 4,816 passing yards and 48 passing scores compared to only 11 interceptions. He’s also added 271 yards on the ground with two scores. He’s a statistical superstar and will be a force to be reckoned with in the league for many years to come.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Saints QB Drew Brees, Colts QB Andrew Luck, and Rams RB Todd Gurley II.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Offensive Player of the Year is…

Carolina Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey

Why: How is it that our pick for NFL Offensive Player of the Tear did not get invited to the Pro Bowl? We often wonder. Christian McCaffrey has broken out in his second season in the NFL and is the dominant workhorse in the Carolina offense, but he’s just not getting enough credit for the fantastic season he’s currently having. He hasn’t missed a game all season and has carried the ball 215 times for 1,080 rushing yards and 7 touchdowns, to a tune of 5 yards per carry. To make matters better, McCaffrey has broken NFL records by catching a whopping 106 passes for 845 receiving yards and 6 scores, some totals that are rare for running backs. He’s been the best all around offensive weapon in the entire league this season and he is truly deserving of this award.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes II, Saints QB Drew Brees, and Rams RB Todd Gurley II.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Defensive Player of the Year is…

Los Angeles Rams DL Aaron Donald

Why: Do you want me to really prove to you how good Aaron Donald has been in 2018? Well, he’s been frequently mentioned as an MVP candidate, which is undoubtedly rarely associated with defensive players. Donald has been dominating the league for years, but this campaign has been his most special to date. He’s forced four fumbles, recovered two, and racked up a league-leading 19.5 sacks. Plus, Donald has a total of 38 QB hits, 24 tackles for loss, and 55 combined tackles. Donald has a ridiculously high 95.3 grade on Pro Football Focus and made a tremendous impact in stopping the run and rushing the passer.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Bears EDGE Khalil Mack, Texans DE J.J. Watt, and Seahawks MLB Bobby Wagner.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Coach of the Year is…

Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy

Why: The Chicago Bears have been arguably the league’s biggest surprise in the 2018 season, but to be fair, I’ve always believed in this team. Matt Nagy came in from Kansas City and used his tutelage from Andy Reid to steal the show in the Windy City. The Bears have the league’s most dominant defense and a developing young signal caller in Mitchell Trubisky. Nagy has surrounded him with a weapon-filled offense and that has helped lead the Bears to an 11-4 record and their first NFC North title since 2010. They are headed to the postseason and Nagy is one of the bright young minds on the NFL landscape.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Colts HC Frank Reich, Chiefs HC Andy Reid, and Seahawks HC Pete Carroll.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Comeback Player of the Year is…

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck

Why: Nobody ever knew if Andrew Luck would be able to return to the success that he had before his nagging shoulder injuries arrived around 2015. The Captain has returned to his form however and his mother would surely be proud of it. Luck has helped put the Colts back into playoff contention in the AFC and they’ll be headed to Nashville for a chance to make the postseason on Sunday night. He’s played every game this year, completing 67.2% of his passes for 4,308 yards, 36 touchdowns, and only 14 interceptions. He’s definitely pushed aside any doubt upon whether he’d be able to return to success on the football field.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): Texans DE J.J. Watt, Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr., and Texans QB Deshaun Watson.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Offensive Line of the Year is…

The Indianapolis Colts Offensive Line

Why: With Andrew Luck winning the Comeback Player of the Year award, not enough can be said about the stellar play of the revamped Colts offensive line, which looks like its going to be one of the best in the league for a long time. Anthony Castonzo is still a solid veteran left tackle, and he’s been paired with young guns in guard Quenton Nelson and right tackle Braden Smith. Ryan Kelly does a fantastic job of anchoring the line at the center position and they’ve done their main job in 2018, which was to protect Andrew Luck.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): The Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints, and Los Angeles Rams Offensive Lines.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Offense of the Year is…

The Kansas City Chiefs Offense

Why: The Kansas City Chiefs offense has been a historic one that continues to put up ridiculous numbers behind the breakout season for quarterback Patrick Mahomes II. Tyreek Hill is one of the toughest receivers to cover in the entire National Football League and Travis Kelce is the consensus number one tight end in football. They’ve got an offense that’s rolling and sometimes it seems like it cannot be stopped. Andy Reid’s scheme has played out terrifically and it remains to be seen how this works out in the postseason for them.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): The New Orleans Saints, Los Angeles Rams, and Los Angeles Chargers offenses.

The 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL Defense of the Year is…

The Chicago Bears Defense

Why: Khalil Mack changed the Bears franchise for the future when they acquired him late summer of 2018. He’s made their defense the best in the league and has arguably pushed them into the playoffs by a large margin. Eddie Jackson has been one of the top safeties in football and Vic Fangio’s defense seems like it’s capable of making a big play at any time, and it sure does make game changing ones when they really count. There’s so much talent on this Chicago defense that I can’t name them all, but this team has a bright future and possibly a Super Bowl or two calling it’s name.

Others Receiving Votes (in order): The Baltimore Ravens, Dallas Cowboys, and Los Angeles Chargers defenses.

My 2018-2019 Pro Sports Fandom NFL All-Pro Team:

OFFENSE:

Saints QB Drew Brees

Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey

Rams RB Todd Gurley II (FLEX)

Chiefs TE Travis Kelce

Falcons WR Julio Jones

Saints WR Michael Thomas

Packers LT David Bakhtiari

Browns LG Joel Bitonio

Eagles C Jason Kelce

Ravens RG Marshal Yanda

Saints RT Ryan Ramczyk

DEFENSE:

Texans EDGE J.J. Watt

Rams DL Aaron Donald

Eagles DL Fletcher Cox

Bears EDGE Khalil Mack

Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner

Colts LB Darius Leonard

Panthers LB Luke Kuechly

Patriots CB Stephon Gilmore

Bears CB Kyle Fuller

Bears S Eddie Jackson

Chargers S Derwin James

Jets S Jamal Adams (DB)

SPECIAL TEAMS:

Saints K Wil Lutz

Seahawks P Michael Dickson

Jets KR Andre Roberts

Raiders PR Dwayne Harris

Chargers ST Adrian Phillips

Thanks for reading! We hope you enjoyed! Let us know what you think about our award picks and give us your award picks on Twitter! Peace out!