Doug Baldwin Set for Another Quiet WR1 Campaign

by Luc Veris
Jul 8, 2017

Doug Baldwin has been one of four players to finish as a WR1 in each of the last two seasons

Is Doug Baldwin an elite talent? Maybe, maybe not (OK, probably not). But is Doug Baldwin an elite fantasy asset? Absolutely. He is one of four wide receivers to finish as a top 10 WR in both standard and PPR scoring – total points, and points per game – in each of the last two seasons. He shares that honor with Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham Jr., and Julio Jones. And all the conditions are right for Baldwin to keep that trend alive in 2017. In fact, he’s due to improve upon his production again as the situation around him becomes more favorable.

Sync your draft to our Draft Assistant for pick by pick advice >>

Consider his situation

– Seattle is morphing into a pass-first offense. Russell Wilson’s attempts have increased year over year: 393, 407, 452, 483, 546. I’m not expecting 600 attempts, but 550-575 is a safe assumption.

– Wilson incurred knee, ankle, and pectoral injuries in 2016. He did play all 16 games, just not at 100%. Expect positive regression to the mean for Wilson’s health in 2017.

– Seattle’s poor offensive line and RB depth chart will prevent them from scoring effectively on the ground. Wilson is going to have to throw to score if Seattle is to win games.

Jimmy Graham, who competes with Baldwin in the middle of the field and in the red zone, has never played 16 games in consecutive seasons in his career. He played 16 games in 2016. The aging, fragile TE is the greatest scoring threat on the roster, and perhaps the only player preventing Baldwin from eclipsing 12 TDs.

Tyler Lockett – Baldwin’s primary competition for WR targets – suffered a gruesome leg injury in Week 16 of the 2016 campaign. The Seahawks have provided minimal details as to when he’ll be back, and in what capacity.

All of these factors, to one degree or another, signal one thing. Doug Baldwin is going to be the most important part of the Seattle Seahawks offense, even more so than in his last two prolific years. Expect a bump both in volume and in scoring for this consistent, reliable performer in 2017.

Next, consider his talent

In neither 2015 nor 2016 did Doug Baldwin fail to eclipse a 75% catch rate. He has that Steve Smith Sr. competitiveness factor. He’s clearly the most talented WR on the team, unless perhaps Lockett comes back in full health, not having missed a stride.

Put it together

– 2015: 103 targets, 78 receptions, 1,069 yards, 14 TDs, 11.9 standard points per game.

– 2016: 125 targets, 94 receptions, 1,128 yards, 7 TDs, 9.7 standard points per game.

– In 2017, expect to see 135 targets, 100 receptions, 1,200 yards, 9 TDs (with upside for 12+), 10.9 points per game in standard scoring settings. Don’t hesitate for a moment to draft this proven commodity as a third-round WR1. Even a mid-to-late second-round pick would be warranted for more conservative drafters.


Subscribe: iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud | Google Play | TuneIn | RSS

Lucius Veris is a correspondent at FantasyPros. For more from Lucius, check out his archive and follow him @LucVarys.

What's your take? Leave a comment

Fantasy Games
DRAFT photo
Get a FREE FantasyPros upgrade with first deposit
Get our Mobile App!

Enter your phone number below, and we'll text you a link to download the app.

1Todd Gurley (LAR)RB
2Le'Veon Bell (PIT)RB
3Ezekiel Elliott (DAL)RB
4David Johnson (ARI)RB
5Antonio Brown (PIT)WR
6DeAndre Hopkins (HOU)WR
7Alvin Kamara (NO)RB
8Saquon Barkley (NYG)RB
9Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG)WR
10Kareem Hunt (KC)RB
 View All Rankings 
11Julio Jones (ATL)WR
12Leonard Fournette (JAC)RB
13Melvin Gordon (LAC)RB
14Michael Thomas (NO)WR
15Dalvin Cook (MIN)RB
16A.J. Green (CIN)WR
17Keenan Allen (LAC)WR
18Davante Adams (GB)WR
19Devonta Freeman (ATL)RB
20Mike Evans (TB)WR
21LeSean McCoy (BUF)RB
22Jordan Howard (CHI)RB
23Rob Gronkowski (NE)TE
24Doug Baldwin (SEA)WR
25Jerick McKinnon (SF)RB
26Christian McCaffrey (CAR)RB
27Tyreek Hill (KC)WR
28Joe Mixon (CIN)RB
29Adam Thielen (MIN)WR
30Travis Kelce (KC)TE
1Mike Trout (LAA)CF
2Mookie Betts (BOS)RF
3Nolan Arenado (COL)3B
4Jose Altuve (HOU)2B
5Max Scherzer (WSH)SP
6Bryce Harper (WSH)RF
7Manny Machado (BAL)3B
8Freddie Freeman (ATL)1B,3B
9Charlie Blackmon (COL)CF
10Jose Ramirez (CLE)2B,3B
 View All Rankings 
11Corey Kluber (CLE)SP
12Chris Sale (BOS)SP
13J.D. Martinez (BOS)RF
14Trea Turner (WSH)SS
15Carlos Correa (HOU)SS
16Paul Goldschmidt (ARI)1B
17Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)RF
18Francisco Lindor (CLE)SS
19Justin Verlander (HOU)SP
20Joey Votto (CIN)1B
21Kris Bryant (CHC)3B,RF
22Aaron Judge (NYY)RF
23Anthony Rizzo (CHC)1B,2B
24George Springer (HOU)CF,RF
25Jacob deGrom (NYM)SP
26Luis Severino (NYY)SP
27Gerrit Cole (HOU)SP
28Andrew Benintendi (BOS)LF,CF
29Jose Abreu (CWS)1B
30Cody Bellinger (LAD)1B,LF
1Kevin Durant (GSW)SF,PF
2Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL)SF,PF
3James Harden (HOU)PG,SG
4Stephen Curry (GSW)PG,SG
5Russell Westbrook (OKC)PG
6Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)C
7Anthony Davis (NOR)PF,C
8Kawhi Leonard (SAS)SG,SF
9LeBron James (CLE)SF,PF
10Nikola Jokic (DEN)PF,C
 View All Rankings 
11John Wall (WAS)PG
12DeMarcus Cousins (NOR)PF,C
13Chris Paul (HOU)PG
14Damian Lillard (POR)PG
15Jimmy Butler (MIN)SG,SF
16Rudy Gobert (UTH)C
17Kyrie Irving (BOS)PG,SG
18Hassan Whiteside (MIA)C,PF
19Myles Turner (IND)PF,C
20Paul George (OKC)SG,SF
21Kyle Lowry (TOR)PG
22Draymond Green (GSW)SF,PF
23Kristaps Porzingis (NYK)PF,C
24Kemba Walker (CHA)PG
25CJ McCollum (POR)PG,SG
26Mike Conley (MEM)PG
27Bradley Beal (WAS)SG
28Klay Thompson (GSW)SG,SF
29Marc Gasol (MEM)C
30Gordon Hayward (BOS)SG,SF