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Minnesota Vikings Fantasy Preview

2018 Projections

Note: all points are calculated with PPR scoring
Team Reception Breakdown

Kirk Cousins: 272.4 total, 17.0 ppg (360/540 passing, 4320 yards, 25 TD, 11 INT; 156 yards rushing, 2 TD, 3 fumbles lost)
Cousins has been a solid fantasy QB for a few years in Washington. Now in Minnesota, he has superior talent around him at pretty much every position. While this does mean he should be more efficient than he was with the Redskins, the superior talent includes the defense. If the defense clamps down this year like it did last year, Kirk won’t have to throw that much. Ultimately I wouldn’t expect anything extraordinary stat-wise except for the yardage. New offensive coordinator John DeFelippo also adds a wrinkle in that he’s never been an NFL OC before. Cousins certainly has the potential to be a QB1, but it isn’t a sure thing this year. He’s probably best used as a reliable backup for fantasy purposes.

Dalvin Cook: 255.4 total, 16.0 ppg (220 carries, 990 yards, 5 TD, 1 fumble lost; 60 Rec, 504 yards, 3 TD)
Latavius Murray: 120.9 total, 7.6 ppg (165 carries, 660 yards, 5 TD, 1 fumble lost; 15 Rec, 119 yards, 0 TD)
Back to full health after a season cut short, Cook looks primed to be the lead back this year for the Vikings. Unfortunately, I would only expect him to be the lead back, not the workhorse back. The Vikings undoubtedly are concerned about his future injury potential and Murray has actually be quite effective as an early-down bruiser. Expect Murray to sub in frequently on early downs and especially in short yardage situations. Yes, that includes the red zone. I would not count on Cook getting too many touchdowns as Murray is likely to vulture them. Ultimately, Cook will be relying on yardage and catches to buoy his fantasy season. He should see enough volume to be a back end RB1. Murray, meanwhile, should be a touchdown-dependent RB4 with RB1 potential if Cook goes down again.

Adam Thielen: 253.6 total, 15.9 ppg (90 Rec, 1296 yards, 6 TD, 1 fumble lost)
Stefon Diggs: 200.3 total, 12.5 ppg (75 Rec, 1013 yards, 4 TD, 0 fumbles lost)
Laquon Treadwell: 69.6 total, 4.4 ppg (30 Rec, 336 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles lost)
Thielen and Diggs would probably be pretty close to even if Diggs could ever stay healthy for a full season. Unfortunately, Diggs has yet to play a full season in his career, missing 2 or 3 games every year and often playing through nagging injuries. Thielen should continue to be the WR1 instead of just 1A as a result. Thielen should be a back end WR1 while Diggs should be a WR2 with upside. It sounds like Treadwell is finally coming to play at an NFL level, just a few years too late. He should see some targets as the established WR3 this year, but I would not expect him to be fantasy relevant without an injury to Thielen or Diggs.

Kyle Rudolph: 204.0 total, 12.8 ppg (75 Rec, 750 yards, 9 TD, 0 fumbles lost)
If you ever doubt who Kirk Cousins’s favorite target is, just remember Star Trek; Captain Kirk always loves himself his tight ends. Nerdy references aside, think about the tight end production the Redskins have seen over the past few years; yes, they had Jordan Reed occasionally, but while he was out with injury after injury Niles Paul and a 90-year-old Vernon Davis both became waiver wire darlings. Cousins targets his tight ends early and often, and Rudolph is one of the most talented in the business. Bonus; he generally stays healthy! This should be one of the best years of Rudolph’s career. He should be a high end TE1, only losing out to elite fixtures Gronk and Kelce.

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