40 Fantasy Stocks You Should Buy (2020 Fantasy Football)
Do you remember what it was like in March and trying to speculate on whether or not there would be a NFL season in the fall? We’re now mere days away from actual football being played and everything appears to be set for the Houston Texans and Kansas City Chiefs to kick off the 2020 NFL season on September 10th.
With that on the horizon, I wanted to take some time this week and highlight 40 things that I like for this fantasy football season. There are some bold takes in here mixed in with some obvious calls, but my hope is that I cause you to stop and think before you head into your draft this upcoming weekend.
Enjoy your drafts, enjoy the food/drinks, and enjoy this fantasy football season.
Let’s dive in.
1. Lamar Jackson Repeating As A Top-Tier Fantasy QB
It’s a tall order, but if there’s one thing we know about fantasy football and the quarterback position, rushing production is king. If you have a mobile QB that can rack up rushing yards, it’s a cheat code at the position. Jackson proved that to be the case last season as he finished 73 fantasy points ahead of second place, while only playing in 15 games. Jackson certainly has the possibility of getting hurt with how much he runs, but he’s proven that he can handle some big shots and get right back up. As long as Lamar’s on the field, he’ll be a top-tier option in 2020.
2. Patrick Mahomes Leading The NFL In Passing Touchdowns
Mahomes was outstanding in 2018, but saw his production take a hit as he was out of the lineup for a spell in 2019 dealing with an ankle injury. While there are a few other players that you can argue could make a push to lead the NFL in passing touchdowns, Mahomes has to be the favorite. With the playmakers he has at his disposal, plus the addition of CEH to this offense, the sky’s the limit for this Chiefs offense. Mahomes should take home the title and should finish in the top-tier of fantasy QBs as long as he stays healthy this season.
3. Dak Prescott Finishing As A Top-3 Fantasy QB
Did you know that Dak was the No. 2 fantasy QB last season? This Dallas offense was high-powered last season and it should be even better this season with the addition of CeeDee Lamb in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Dak has all the weapons in the world to repeat as a top-option at the QB position for fantasy football and he’s going to pick up volume on the ground too. While guys like Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson should be right up there with him, Dak’s a solid bet to finish as a top-3 option.
4. Cam Newton Rebounding To His Old Form
There are plenty of people that are doubting Newton in 2020 and I’m not one of them. While this all hinges on whether or not he’s fully healthy, I believe he’s had plenty of time to get his body right. It would be nice to have preseason games to witness this ourselves, but we’ll have to rely on training camp reports right now. All indications are that Newton’s healthy and ready to go. He’s absolutely worth the draft price outside the top-12.
5. Tyrod Taylor Being A Fantasy Relevant Quarterback
If you’re looking for a super deep option at the QB position, I love Taylor this season. This Chargers team is going to look nothing like what we’ve seen in previous years with Philip Rivers. They’re going to rely on the run game, lean on their defense, and control the clock. If that’s the case, Taylor’s going to be utilized heavily as a runner and he’ll be asked to use his mobility on schemed runs. Those are easy points at the QB position for fantasy football and he has a great matchup in week one against the Bengals defense. As long as the Chargers are competitive, he’ll keep Justin Herbert on the bench. As long as he can do that, he’ll be a fantasy relevant QB.
6. Matt Ryan Leading The NFL In Pass Attempts
This Falcons offense should be on the most pass-happy units by design. However, once you factor in that Todd Gurley might not be able to handle a full workload, there’s a legitimate path for the Falcons to throw the ball over 700 times this season. That’s a fantasy goldmine for these receiving weapons and there’s going to be tons of points put up in this offense. Ryan should be drafted as a top-10 QB in 2020.
7. Joe Burrow Finishing As A Top-15 QB As A Rookie
It doesn’t happen often that we see a rookie QB come into the NFL and finish as a top-15 option right out of the gates. It also doesn’t happen often that we see a QB enter the NFL like Burrow. He’s not only one of the most talented QBs to enter the league in quite some time, but he has arguably one of the best receiving corps out there. Once you add in the fact that Burrow has some movability to his game, it’s not hard to see how he could ascend and become a consistent QB week in and week out for your fantasy football roster.
8. Josh Allen Finishing As A Top-7 QB Again
The general population does not like Allen, but he consistently produces for fantasy football. He’s used heavily around the goal line in this Bills offense and he consistently racks up high rushing touchdown totals. While he’s not one of the league’s best passers, adding Stefon Diggs to this offense can only help him and his passing yardage totals. If Allen can take even a slight step forward from a passing perspective, while still being used heavily as a runner, there’s no way Allen finishes outside the top-10 at the position. I’m willing to bet on him finishing inside the top-7 when it’s all said and done.
9. Kyler Murray Increasing His Efficiency
If you look at the numbers, Murray wasn’t particularly efficient last season. A 6.9 Yards Per Attempt isn’t going to cut it year in and year out in the NFL, but the Cardinals went out and acquired Nuk Hopkins to help with that issue. Hopkins is a top-5 receiver in the NFL and he should easily help Murray become more efficient this season. When you combine that with Murray’s rushing ability, it’s easy to see how he could finish within the top-5 at the position when the season wraps up.
10. Drew Lock Taking A Step Forward
Lock finished out the 2019 season strong and the Broncos are going all-in with the young quarterback in hopes that he’s finally the long-term answer for their franchise. They’ve surrounded Lock with all the weapons that he can handle and he’s absolutely set up for success moving forward. As long as Lock can execute the offense, this Broncos team should be tough to deal with in 2020.
11. Christian McCaffrey Repeating As The RB1
It’s very rare that we see a RB repeat as the RB1 in back to back years. However, CMC absolutely has the chance to be in that elite company this season with his involvement in the offense. As long as he’s healthy, he’s the likely candidate to finish as the overall RB1 yet again.
12. Saquon Barkley Rebounding From His 2019 Season
Barkley was unstoppable in 2018 and then dealt with an ankle injury that slowed him down in 2019. When he’s fully healthy, he just might be the best pure running back in the NFL. Some people are off of Barkley this year, but I’m all about selecting him with the No. 2 overall pick behind CMC. I’m fully expecting him to rebound to his old form and maybe even compete for the RB1 title.
13. Ezekiel Elliott‘s Red Zone Opportunity
Did you know that Zeke led the NFL in red zone rushes in 2019? Elliott had 59 rush attempts inside the 20-yard line last season, which is an absurd amount of volume. While Pollard should ascend and continue to become a bit more involved in the offense, Zeke’s a safe option at the No. 3 overall pick due to the volume he sees in the key parts of the football field.
14. Derrick Henry‘s Consistency
There are a ton of questions surrounding the backs in the back half of the first round right now. Alvin Kamara, Dalvin Cook, Miles Sanders, and Kenyan Drake all come with concerns and could end up hurting fantasy football rosters in 2020 if they don’t receive their contracts or aren’t fully healthy to start the year. With that in mind, if you want stability on your fantasy football roster, it’s hard to go wrong with selecting Henry even as high as No. 5 in Half PPR formats now.
15. Clyde Edwards-Helaire‘s Upside
If you don’t want the stable presence on your roster with Henry, but instead you want to swing for the fences, CEH is your pick. In this offense, there’s no telling what CEH can do from a fantasy football perspective. It’s a very small percentage chance, but CEH has the involvement in the receiving game to be in contention for the RB1 title when it’s all said and done. Henry doesn’t offer that, but it’s all about how you want to build your roster in the first round. I’m all in with CEH this season right now and I love his upside.
16. Austin Ekeler‘s Dominance In PPR Leagues
Do you play in Full PPR leagues? Then get Ekeler on your fantasy team this season. With Tyrod at QB, there’s no telling how many targets Ekeler could see at or behind the line of scrimmage. You don’t have to draft him to be this player, but I’d even be fine with Ekeler as my team’s RB1 in this format if it came down to it.
17. Jonathan Taylor Leading The Colts Backfield In Touches
Marlon Mack‘s a fine football player, but he’s not JT. Taylor should immediately separate himself from Mack in this backfield and pull away with the starting job sooner than later. 250 carries on the season for JT is not out of the realm of possibilities and he has the talent to make those count for fantasy football.
18. Ronald Jones Returning Draft Day Value
Editor’s Note: This prediction was written prior to Leonard Fournette signing with the Bucs.
Jones absolutely comes with risk and that’s why he’s being drafted as a low-end RB2 this year. However, when he’s on the field as the starter, he’s absolutely going to contribute to your fantasy roster this season. This offense should be a high-powered unit and Jones should see every opportunity inside the red zone. While there’s the potential that he gets benched at some point for missing a blitz pickup, you don’t need to rely on him as a weekly RB1. He can certainly put up those kind of numbers though.
19. Jordan Howard Being A Steady Low-End RB2 For Your Roster
Selecting Howard probably doesn’t feel the best because he doesn’t come with top-10 upside, but he’s absolutely going to produce for your fantasy lineup this year. There’s something to be said for having a steady RB2 in your lineup that’s going to see guaranteed touches. In this offense, Howard will be the lead back and we’ll see Matt Breida factor in as the pass-catcher. Breida will be kept in a change of pace role though, due to the fact that he’s proven he can’t handle a significant workload in the NFL previously, which leaves a lot of work on the ground for Howard. You can snag Howard as a RB3 or RB4 in your fantasy football drafts right now. He’s going to finish higher than that as long as he stays on the field.
20. Mark Ingram‘s Floor
Ingram was a draft day steal last year, but the presence of JK Dobbins in this backfield limits his overall upside for 2020. With that being said, Ingram is still going to be the lead back in this backfield and he should still see enough touches to return value on his current ADP. Just like with Howard, he’s a steady RB2 for your roster this season.
21. Kareem Hunt‘s Top-5 Upside
There are very few backs that have standalone value on their own as the second option in their backfield. Hunt has the potential to be a weekly FLEX option in PPR leagues, but he has top-3 upside if something were to happen to Nick Chubb. We’ve seen how good Hunt can be for fantasy football before when he gets the majority of the touches. In this offense, the sky’s the limit if he becomes the main guy.
22. Antonio Gibson‘s Ability To Be A Difference-Maker
If you’ve never watched Gibson’s highlights from college, I highly recommend you do so right now. At 6’0/228 pounds, he’s a freak athlete and has the ability to pull away from nearly every defender in the NFL. As evidenced by his 4.39 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, Gibson has speed to spare. The Washington team needs a receiving option like Gibson out of the backfield and one that can be moved around the formation. Gibson’s going to be heavily involved this season and he’s someone worth taking the shot on in drafts.
23. David Montgomery‘s Guaranteed Volume
Montgomery was someone I had high hopes for coming into this season before his groin injury. While I do believe that he’s not going to be ready to start the season, he should be back sooner than later. If that’s the case, he’s going to be a value in drafts still because of the workload that he’s going to see in this offense. The Bears still have yet to bring in anyone else to compete with Ryan Nall or Artavis Pierce for carries, which indicates that Montgomery will be the guy when he’s on the field. It’s hard to find a back in this range of the draft that will see the amount of work Montgomery will and he’s still worth taking the shot on in the mid-rounds of your draft.
24. Julio Jones‘ Chances Of Repeating As A Top-3 WR
Julio is one of the greatest wide receivers to ever play the game of football. Until we see a decline from him on the football field, I will still rank him as a top-tier option. In an offense that’s going to pass the ball as much as the Falcons are in 2020, it wouldn’t surprise me to see Julio lead the league in receptions and receiving yards.
25. Davante Adams‘ Target Volume
Michael Thomas saw an absurd amount of targets in 2019. This season, provided he can stay healthy, Adams could easily surpass him. There are a ton of other unproven options on this roster in Green Bay and Rodgers trusts Adams immensely. Adams should be off the board as a top-3 WR.
26. Allen Robinson‘s Opportunity In The Bears Offense
Did you know that Robinson finished tied for 3rd in the NFL last season in terms of red zone targets? He finished only two targets behind Michael Thomas in that part of the field. If this offense can be adequate in 2020 and can get into the red zone more than they did last season, Robinson could absolutely explode for fantasy purposes with that type of opportunity. He’s the clear-cut WR1 on this team and he’s poised to lead rosters to a fantasy football championship.
27. Calvin Ridley Finishing As A Top-7 WR
If you’ve read any of my work this offseason, or listened to the FantasyPros Football Podcast, you know that I’m all in on Ridley this season. In this offense, the sky is the limit for Ridley this season and there’s a very realistic chance that we see both Julio and Ridley finish in the top-5 at the WR position. Ridley’s a steal in drafts right now and you need to be buying him everywhere that you can.
28. Robert Woods Finishing As A Top-12 WR
Over the last half of 2019, we saw Cooper Kupp‘s involvement in the offense significantly decrease, while Woods remained on the field at all times. With the Rams relying heavily on two TE sets, Kupp came off the field routinely and Woods soaked up targets. All indications are that the Rams appear set to deploy this same strategy in 2020, which means that Woods is being criminally undervalued by the public. Woods is one of my favorite targets in the mid-rounds of drafts this year.
29. DJ Chark‘s Target Share
This Jaguars team is going to be throwing the ball a ridiculous amount in 2020 after Leonard Fournette‘s release. Chark is the unquestioned WR1 on this team and he should be in line for over 130 targets. He broke out in a big way last year and Minshew and Chark have chemistry together. I’d be ecstatic to have Chark as a WR2 on my fantasy football roster.
30. Tyler Boyd Leading The Bengals In Receiving
AJ Green has the talent to be the WR1 on this revamped Bengals team, but he’s no guarantee to be on the field for a full season. Boyd has been dominant out of the slot recently and Burrow force fed Justin Jefferson out of the slot at LSU in 2019. Boyd’s absolutely going to return value on where he’s being drafted right now and he’s the obvious answer if you want a piece of this improved Bengals passing attack.
31. Jarvis Landry Outperforming His ADP Yet Again
Landry has done nothing except outperform expectations throughout his NFL career. He’s consistently doubted in the fantasy football community and that’s reflected in his ADP again this season. Landry’s currently going off the board as the WR30 and it’s highly unlikely that he finishes all the way down there this season.
32. Diontae Johnson Emerging As A Fantasy Star This Season
If there’s a player that I’m willing to bet big on this season, it’s Johnson. Even as a rookie, Johnson showed up in a big way with Mason Rudolph and Devlin Hodges. Now, Big Ben returns and this offense should return to being one of the league’s best. With that in mind, and looking at the competition for targets on the roster outside of JuJu Smith-Schuster, it’s easy to see how Johnson can emerge as one of the league’s most consistent fantasy options.
33. George Kittle Leading All Tight Ends In Receiving
As long as Kittle is healthy and ready to go for week one, he will be force fed targets in this offense. This WR room is decimated with injuries, as evidenced by the fact that Kevin White is back in the NFL with the 49ers, and the ball has to go somewhere. Kittle should be peppered with targets and he has the talent to make them count. It’ll be close between him and the next guy on this list, but Kittle should get the title.
34. Travis Kelce Finishing In The Top-2 Yet Again
Kelce has finished as a top-2 tight end every year since 2016. That’s insane. In this offense, there’s no reason to doubt that he can do it again. End of analysis.
35. Hayden Hurst Cracking The Top-5 At The TE Position
Can you tell that I like the Falcons offense this year for fantasy purposes? Hurst is a good talent at the position, but he’s been buried beneath Mark Andrews in Baltimore for the past couple of seasons. The Falcons communicated how much of a focal point they expect him to be in their offense by selecting him with a second-round pick
36. Jonnu Smith Emerging As A Weekly Must-Start
Smith is one of the most athletic tight ends the league has to offer. Now that he’s the clear-cut option in this TE room, he’ll be featured heavily. The other Titans receiving options of Adam Humphries and Corey Davis are not going to command targets, which leaves a huge opportunity for Smith. He has the athleticism and ability to make it count for fantasy football.
37. Blake Jarwin Breaking Out
Jarwin has always been someone that’s caught my eye when he’d get touches, but he was buried on the depth chart in previous seasons. Now, he’s the clear-cut starter at the TE position in one of the league’s most potent offenses. Jarwin could be in line for a significant target share and there’s going to be scoring opportunities for him here in Dallas. He’s a solid breakout candidate.
38. Darren Waller Seeing Positive Regression With Touchdowns
Waller was essentially the lone wolf last season in Oakland, but he now has some serious competition for targets in this offense now. Las Vegas should be spreading the ball around to guys like Henry Ruggs, Hunter Renfrow, and Bryan Edwards, which eats into Waller’s overall target volume. However, he certainly has some room for positive regression in the touchdown category. On 1,145 receiving yards in 2019, Waller only scored three touchdowns. That was well below the league average at the position and we should see that number bounce up this year. So while it’s hard to see Waller getting 117 targets again, he can compensate with more touchdown production.
39. Zach Ertz Still Being A Weekly Must-Start
There were people that were willing to send Ertz’s fantasy stock sailing off to sea at the beginning of the offseason, but the injuries to this receiving corps have forced people to buy back in for yet another season. Wentz’s most trusted target will see all the work he can handle this season and he should easily finish within the top-5 yet again.
40. Mike Gesicki‘s Opportunity In This Dolphins Offense
If you’re looking for a TE to breakout this year, there are a quite a few options to choose from. A solid dice roll though is Mike Gesicki due to the need for him in this Dolphins offense. Gesicki’s been inefficient, but he has the athleticism to truly emerge once he puts it all together. The Dolphins need another option to step up outside of Preston Williams and DeVante Parker. Gesicki could be peppered with targets in 2020.