Richard Rodgers Is A Solid Streamer Against Dallas (2020 Fantasy Football)
The Philadelphia Eagles were stacked at tight end coming into the season. Not only did they have a top-three tight end in Zach Ertz, but they also had a talented youngster, Dallas Goedert, developing behind him.
But then injuries (and in Ertz’s case, inefficiency) struck. Now, journeyman Richard Rodgers finds himself atop the depth chart until Goedert returns in Week 10.
— FantasyPros (@FantasyProsNFL) October 22, 2020
The Eagles will play the Cowboys in Week 8 before their Week 9 bye. So while you may only get one game out of Rodgers, he’s a viable streamer this week against a bad Dallas defense.
Rodgers was a third-round draft pick of the Green Bay Packers back in 2014. After Green Bay moved on from him at the end of 2017, he spent time in Philadelphia and Washington, but he only caught one pass before this season. He has since been vaulted into a starting role for the Eagles, and he caught six passes in Week 7 alone.
The 28-year-old tight end is an unremarkable athlete. He has 30th-percentile speed, 32nd-percentile burst, and 34th-percentile agility. While that’s nothing to get excited about, the veteran has the awareness necessary to compensate and get open. Here’s his 30-yard catch from last Thursday:
A play that helped set up that TD to Scott was this 30-yard completion to TE Richard Rodgers.
The concept? Dagger. Perfect call against Cover 2, which the #Giants are running
BUT – great blitz call by NYG; the pressure beats the protection. Wentz creates and makes the play pic.twitter.com/YW0dEhyTiw
— Fran Duffy (@EaglesXOs) October 23, 2020
State of the Offense
While Rodgers isn’t the most athletic player, the Eagles don’t have many other options in the passing game. In addition to their injuries at tight end, DeSean Jackson is now on injured reserve, and the team is actively shopping Alshon Jeffery. Jalen Reagor could return for this week’s game, but his return won’t dramatically alter this offense; he’ll just replace John Hightower.
Of the 269 targets thrown so far, 82 of them (30.5%) have gone to tight ends. Last season, when both Goedert and Ertz were healthier, the team’s tight ends combined for 235 of 604 targets (38.9%).
Carson Wentz loves to feature his tight ends, and with just one of them healthy (okay, Jason Croom and Hakeem Butler are technically also around, but they’ve combined for one total target thus far), Rodgers is in line for plenty of touches.
Rodgers will probably only start one more game. Fortunately, that game comes against the Dallas Cowboys. Their defense has been horrific this season, and they’ve allowed opposing teams to score 34.71 points per game against them.
The Cowboys are a must-target defense in fantasy, as they rank as a bottom-12 team against every offensive position. They fare particularly poorly against tight ends — they give up 12.4 half-PPR points per game to the position. The team just allowed Logan Thomas to catch four passes for 60 yards and a score last week.
You should consider picking up Rodgers if you need a fill-in at tight end or if you’ve decided just to stream the position. I’m not optimistic about his long-term value, as Goedert’s return will torpedo his usage. If you need a long-term solution, see if you can still snag Trey Burton — I’m a big fan of his rest-of-season outlook.
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