Dynasty Buy Low Candidate: Mike Evans (Fantasy Football)

Feb 18, 2018

Mike Evans’ sheer volume of expected work should result in a bounce-back 2018

Geoff Lambert looks ahead to 2018 and explains why now is the best time to buy Mike Evans while his stock low. 

This piece is part of our article program that features quality content from experts exclusively at FantasyPros. For more insight from Geoff, head over to GoingFor2.com.

It is no secret that Mike Evans was one of the biggest fantasy disappointments of 2017. Drafted as a top five WR in re-draft and startup dynasty drafts, Evans finished the season at No. 17 in total fantasy points among wide receivers (PPR scoring). Some of his difficulties can be attributed to the struggles of his QB, Jameis Winston, who also had a down year, but ultimately if you drafted Evans this year, he left you disappointed.

Get a free $3 Best Ball entry into a 2018 DRAFT contest with your first deposit >>

There is only one good thing to come from a star player having a down season, and that’s buying him at a low price from a panicked owner. Even though it seems like Evans has been in the NFL forever, he is going into his fifth season and will be only 25 when the season starts. In other words, he is still very young for an NFL wide receiver and is just now entering the prime of his career.

After his down season in 2017, he has now alternated good and bad seasons over his first four years. He broke into the league as a rookie with 12 TDs but followed that up with only three the next season.

In 2016, he had a career year with 1,321 yards and 12 TDs before his disappointing 2017 season. If history repeats itself, we can expect a big bounce back for Evans in 2018.

His 2017 season wasn’t entirely a disaster, as he still had over 1,000 yards receiving, 136 targets and was firmly in the WR2 range for the season. The 136 targets he got was the second-lowest total in his career — only his rookie season was worse — but despite that number being near a career low, he still ranked as the 11th-most targetted wide receiver in the league. That was more targets than the likes of Stefon Diggs, Tyreek Hill, Devante Adams, and Golden Tate, all of whom had better fantasy season then did Evans.

His biggest drop off in fantasy production came from his lack of TDs, with only five on the season. Despite being tied for the seventh most red zone targets (19), he only converted four of them into scores — only Adam Thielen and Julio Jones had fewer TDs for receivers with at least 19 red zone targets. If we took that a step further and looked at targets inside the 10-yard-line, his 11 percent catch rate inside the 10 was the second worst for receivers with at least nine targets — only Adam Thielen’s nine percent was lower.

In fantasy football, opportunity trumps everything else, and Evans had plenty of opportunities in 2017, which is encouraging for dynasty owners as we look ahead to 2018. I think Evans’ season was the exception not, the rule.

If he gets similar chances next year with 130-plus targets and 19-plus red zone targets, his production will adjust to the mean resulting in a much better fantasy season. Some trigger-happy owners may not think that way, and you might be able to put together a package of low-end fantasy players, or draft picks to try and pry Evans away to reap the benefits next season.

What's your take? Leave a comment

Fantasy Games
FanDuel photo
New players get a free NFL contest every week until they win cash.
Get our Mobile App!

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

1Todd Gurley (LAR)RB
2Saquon Barkley (NYG)RB
3Christian McCaffrey (CAR)RB
4Ezekiel Elliott (DAL)RB
5Alvin Kamara (NO)RB
6Phillip Lindsay (DEN)RB
7Nick Chubb (CLE)RB
8Joe Mixon (CIN)RB
9Leonard Fournette (JAC)RB
10Michael Thomas (NO)WR
 View all Flex Rankings 
11Antonio Brown (PIT)WR
12DeAndre Hopkins (HOU)WR
13Dalvin Cook (MIN)RB
14Keenan Allen (LAC)WR
15Davante Adams (GB)WR
16Julio Jones (ATL)WR
17David Johnson (ARI)RB
18Adam Thielen (MIN)WR
19JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT)WR
20Tyreek Hill (KC)WR
21Chris Carson (SEA)RB
22Robert Woods (LAR)WR
23Brandin Cooks (LAR)WR
24Lamar Miller (HOU)RB
25Travis Kelce (KC)TE
26Aaron Jones (GB)RB
27Amari Cooper (DAL)WR
28Sony Michel (NE)RB
29Tarik Cohen (CHI)RB
30Mark Ingram (NO)RB
1Mike Trout (LAA)CF,DH
2Mookie Betts (BOS)CF,RF
3Nolan Arenado (COL)3B
4Max Scherzer (WSH)SP
5Jose Altuve (HOU)2B
6Bryce Harper (FA)CF,RF
7Manny Machado (FA)3B,SS
8J.D. Martinez (BOS)LF,RF
9Freddie Freeman (ATL)1B,3B
10Charlie Blackmon (COL)CF
 View All Rankings 
11Corey Kluber (CLE)SP
12Jose Ramirez (CLE)2B,3B
13Paul Goldschmidt (STL)1B
14Francisco Lindor (CLE)SS
15Trea Turner (WSH)SS
16Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)LF,RF
17Carlos Correa (HOU)SS
18Justin Verlander (HOU)SP
19Joey Votto (CIN)1B
20Anthony Rizzo (CHC)1B,2B
21Jacob deGrom (NYM)SP
22Chris Sale (BOS)SP
23Clayton Kershaw (LAD)SP
24George Springer (HOU)CF,RF
25Kris Bryant (CHC)3B,RF
26Luis Severino (NYY)SP
27Andrew Benintendi (BOS)LF,CF
28Aaron Judge (NYY)RF,DH
29Starling Marte (PIT)LF,CF
30Christian Yelich (MIL)LF,CF
1Anthony Davis (NOR)PF,C
2James Harden (HOU)PG,SG
3Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL)SF,PF
4Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)C
5Kevin Durant (GSW)SF,PF
6LeBron James (LAL)SF,PF
7Stephen Curry (GSW)PG,SG
8Nikola Jokic (DEN)PF,C
9Damian Lillard (POR)PG
10Russell Westbrook (OKC)PG
 View All Rankings 
11Victor Oladipo (IND)PG,SG
12Paul George (OKC)SG,SF
13Joel Embiid (PHI)PF,C
14Kawhi Leonard (TOR)SG,SF
15Chris Paul (HOU)PG
16Jimmy Butler (PHI)SG,SF
17Kemba Walker (CHA)PG
18Kyrie Irving (BOS)PG,SG
19Ben Simmons (PHI)PG,SF
20Jrue Holiday (NOR)PG,SG
21Rudy Gobert (UTH)C
22Andre Drummond (DET)PF,C
23John Wall (WAS)PG
24Kyle Lowry (TOR)PG
25Khris Middleton (MIL)SG,SF
26Donovan Mitchell (UTH)PG,SG
27Bradley Beal (WAS)SG
28Kevin Love (CLE)PF,C
29Draymond Green (GSW)PF,C
30LaMarcus Aldridge (SAS)PF,C
Follow the Pros!

Follow us on Twitter @FantasyPros for exclusive advice and contests