Just four years removed from a Super Bowl appearance, the Carson Wentz era came to an abrupt end in Philadelphia. Jalen Hurts flashed a ton of potential in his four starts, but he'll need to prove reliable as a passer for this offense to live up to expectations. The addition of DeVonta Smith, Hurts' former teammate at Alabama, should help.
Record: 4 - 11 - 1 (28)
PPG: 20.9 (26)
YPG: 334.6 (24)
Pass YPG: 207.9 (28)
Rush YPG: 126.7 (9)
PAPG: 37.4 (10)
RAPG: 25.2 (23)
2020 Fantasy finishes
Number to know: 13.5%
Miles Sanders dropped 13.5% of the targets he earned in 2020, including six in his first six games -- a 20% drop rate. Sanders was routinely earning valuable downfield targets early on in the season but obviously left a lot of points on the field and saw his role in the passing game diminish considerably after an especially tough showing against the Ravens in Week 6. The question this season is whether he can earn that early-season role again; that will determine how high his ceiling can be in this offense.
1. (10) DeVonta Smith, WR
2. (37) Landon Dickerson, C
3. (73) Milton Williams, DT
4. (123) Zech McPhearson, CB
5. (150) Kenneth Gainwell, RB
6. (189) Marlon Tuipulotu, DT
6. (191) Tarron Jackson, DE
6. (224) JaCoby Stevens, S
7. (234) Patrick Johnson, LB
109 carries, 43 RB targets, 39 WR targets, 31 TE targets
Chris Towers' projections
|QB||Jalen Hurts||PA: 580, YD: 4061, TD: 27, INT: 12; RUSH -- ATT: 130, YD: 674, TD: 5|
|RB||Miles Sanders||CAR: 225, YD: 1015, TD: 8; TAR: 58, REC: 44, YD: 352, TD: 3|
|RB||Kenneth Gainwell||CAR: 67, YD: 269, TD: 3; TAR: 29, REC: 23, YD: 186, TD: 1|
|WR||Jalen Reagor||TAR: 102, REC: 60, YD: 749, TD: 5|
|WR||DeVonta Smith||TAR: 107, REC: 68, YD: 879, TD: 5|
|WR||Travis Fulgham||TAR: 60, REC: 34, YD: 437, TD: 3|
|TE||Dallas Goedert||TAR: 110, REC: 76, YD: 837, TD: 5|
Can Jalen Hurts be the guy?
There are lots of questions here -- Can Miles Sanders improve as a receiver? Can Jalen Reagor overcome his dreadful rookie season? -- but ultimately Hurts is going to be the key. The rushing ability is unquestionable, maybe second only to Lamar Jackson, and should make Hurts a must-start Fantasy option at QB. But he'll need to prove reliable as a passer in order to hold on to the job, and the Eagles have been a bit non-committal this offseason. Me? I'll buy him as my starter at QB all day, especially with the addition of last year's Heisman Trophy winner to his receiving corps.
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One sleeper, one breakout and one bust
Reagor had a pretty horrendous rookie season, but it's worth remembering that he was the 21st pick in the draft just a year ago and really struggled with injuries, especially early on. He suffered a shoulder injury right before the start of the season and then had a thumb injury after just two games, which is a tough way to start a rookie season -- especially when you had an abbreviated training camp and no preseason. I think DeVonta Smith is more talented than Reagor, but Reagor is no slouch himself, and it wouldn't be entirely surprising if he was the top target to start the season. And, if he's right, maybe he can take the opportunity and run with it.
Hurts showed his potential last season in his first three starts when he scored 28.6 points per game in that stretch. And … then he got benched in his fourth start. That kind of represents the risk/reward profile he brings to the table. He has a ton of upside as a Fantasy option, but the Eagles could very well decide to move on from him as the starter if things don't go too well. Hurts was good enough as a passer in a very bad situation that I think he'll hang on to the job, and the addition of Smith could make him an even better passer. Of course, all he needs to do is be competent in that regard and his rushing production should make him a must-start Fantasy option. When talking about the best rushing quarterbacks not named Lamar Jackson, Hurts is seemingly right there with Kyler Murray.
Based on his production at Alabama, Smith is a pretty unimpeachable prospect. But it took him a while to truly break out, and while he tested well at his Pro Day, he isn't necessarily an elite athlete -- especially when you consider that he is 170 pounds at 6-foot. I tend to believe the production matters more, but Smith's physical profile would be pretty unprecedented for a star receiver. Of course, his production at his size in college was pretty unprecedented, so that should count for something, too. I think Smith will lead this team in targets and be a solid Fantasy option, but if you're drafting him to be a must-start player, you might be disappointed, especially if Reagor develops rapport with Hurts. The risk is low, but Smith could disappoint.
So which sleepers, breakouts and busts should you target and fade? And which QB shocks the NFL with a top-five performance? Visit SportsLine now to get Fantasy cheat sheets for every single position, all from the model that called Josh Allen's huge season, and find out.