Aaron Rodgers didn't bounce back as we hoped in 2019, though given how little the Packers continue to invest in the passing game, it's hard to blame him too much. Unfortunately, the Packers essentially made no investments in the passing game yet again in the 2020 offseason, so it might be hard for things to get much better. Plus, all of a sudden we've got a very crowded backfield to sort through, and Davante Adams isn't enough to make Rodgers an elite Fantasy option anymore, especially if the Packers remain as run-heavy as they were, which seems likely.
Record: 13 - 3 (2)
PPG: 23.5 (15)
YPG: 345.5 (18)
Pass YPG: 233.3 (17)
Rush YPG: 112.2 (15)
PAPG: 35.8 (16)
RAPG: 25.7 (13)
2019 Fantasy finishes
Number to know: 5.5
In four games Davante Adams missed, Aaron Jones caught 5.5 passes per game; in the 12 games Adams played, Jones caught just 2.25 passes per game. Two other big numbers to know for Jones are 19 and 65%.19 represents his total touchdowns in 2019, a number that was due for regression even before the Packers selected AJ Dillon; 65% represents a snap threshold Jones only hit four times — twice during games Jamaal Williams missed and two more where he left early. The addition of Dillon is just one more data point in a long trend of the Packers limiting Jones from being a workhorse for Fantasy.
1. (26) Jordan Love, QB
2. (62) AJ Dillon, RB
3. (94) Josiah Deguara, TE
5. (175) Kamal Martin, LB
6. (192) Jon Runyan, OT
6. (208) Jake Hanson, C
6. (209) Simon Stepaniak, OT
7. (236) Vernon Scott, S
7. (242) Jonathan Garvin, DE
7 carries, 16 RB targets, 56 WR targets, 60 TE targets
Rankings and Projections
|Heath Cummings' projections|
|QB||Aaron Rodgers||3,908 YD, 28 TD, 7 INT; 227 Rush YD, 2 TD|
|RB||Aaron Jones||1,205 YD, 10 TD; 44 REC, 372 YD, 2 TD|
|RB||AJ Dillon||493 YD, 5 TD; 3 REC, 24 YD, 0 TD|
|RB||Jamaal Williams||154 YD, 1 TD; 33 REC, 260 YD, 2 TD|
|WR||Davante Adams||166 TAR, 106 REC, 1,285 YD, 11 TD|
|WR||Allen Lazard||107 TAR, 72 REC, 961 YD, 5 TD|
|TE||Jace Sternberger||59 TAR, 39 REC, 473 YD, 3 TD|
What did the Packers draft mean?
Green Bay selected a quarterback in the first round, a 247-pound back in the second, and no wide receivers at all. Rodgers is safe for 2020, but Jones will have a hard time repeating his league-leading 19 touchdowns. Meanwhile, the targets are there for Adams to have a monster year plus for Lazard to build on a solid end to 2019 if he can become the clear No. 2 over free agent addition Devin Funchess.
One sleeper, one breakout and one bust
Dillon was a surprise second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft that the Fantasy community seems to have written off a bit, in part because of the talent the Packers already have at running back and in part because of the number of higher-profile backs who went before him in. Both Jones and Williams are in contract years, so maybe Dillon was a long-term pick. But Dillon's size/speed combination closely mirrors Derrick Henry's as a player who very much has the physicality and collegiate track record to handle the load at the next level, and the Packers were clearly enamored with him. Think of Dillon as a high-end handcuff in a good offense that wants to run the ball, but he has the potential for stand-alone value with 8-10 carries per week to keep Jones fresh. And given the nearly 40 pounds he has on Jones, Dillon is arguably the front-runner for goal-line work in an offense that generated 25 running back scores in 2019.
Someone's going to need to step into a second pass-catching role, even as Adams is expected to dominate looks. That someone could be Lazard, who worked his way into playing time as 2019 went on. After not catching a pass in the season's first five weeks, Lazard closed the year with at least three catches in eight of the final 11 games, notably drawing praise from Rodgers throughout. At 6-feet-3, 225 pounds, Lazard is a big outside receiver who was an impressive four-year producer at Iowa State — he broke out as a sophomore and posted three straight seasons with Dominator Ratings north of 30%. The biggest hurdle for wide receivers like Lazard — an underrated college producer who didn't generate much buzz and went undrafted in 2017 — is simply finding a role with some playing time. He found that in his third season, and the Packers did little to block him all offseason, giving the 24-year-old a solid shot to make a Fantasy impact as a late-round flyer in 2020.
Jones is an incredible talent who had a breakout 2019 and deserves all the credit in the world for his performance and abilities. But he's also a tricky Fantasy selection in 2020 because of the Dillon pick, and because so much of Jones' performance was tough to repeat based on how the Packers have used him. Jones only played over 65% of the snaps four times in 2019, and those coincided with absences from Williams. Three of Jones' five 100-yard rushing performances and seven of his 19 total touchdowns came in those four games, and now they've added Dillon, seemingly furthering their preference for Jones not to play bell cow snaps.
Jones' receiving production was also far better when Adams missed time. For as much as it seemed like Jones was unleashed in 2019, dig a little deeper and it's clear the Packers treated it as more of a "break glass in case of emergency" situation. It's hard enough for backs to repeat anything close to Jones' 2019 season — particularly the 19 touchdowns — when their team wants to use them as full-time players. It will be incredibly hard for Jones given the Packers seem hell-bent on keeping him in a rotational role.
AFC East: Bills | Jets | Patriots | Dolphins
NFC East: Giants | Cowboys | Eagles | Redskins
AFC South: Colts | Texans | Jaguars | Titans
NFC South: Panthers | Bucs | Falcons | Saints
AFC North: Ravens | Steelers | Browns | Bengals
NFC North: Packers | Vikings | Bears | Lions
AFC West: Chiefs | Broncos | Raiders | Chargers
NFC West: Seahawks | 49ers | Rams | Cardinals
So what Fantasy football sleepers should you snatch in your draft? And which WR1 candidate can you wait on until late? Visit SportsLine now to get cheat sheets from the model that was all over Derrick Henry's huge season, and find out.