The Cardinals built a solid foundation in 2019 around Kyler Murray and Kliff Kingsbury, and then they went out and found a running back and elite wide receiver for Murray to play with. They jumped from dead last in scoring in 2018 to middle of the pack in 2019, and another leap seems inevitable. Now, it's about whether Murray can really be an elite QB playing with DeAndre Hopkins. The sky is the limit here.
Record: 5-10-1 (25)
PPG: 22.6 (16)
YPG: 341.7 (21)
Pass YPG: 217.3 (24)
Rush YPG: 124.4 (10)
PAPG: 34.6 (18)
RAPG: 24.8 (19)
2019 Fantasy finishes
Number to know: 38.8%
The Cardinals scored on 38.8% of their drives in 2019, the ninth-highest rate in the NFL. You probably didn't notice, of course, because just 21.3% ended in touchdowns, 20th in the league. This offense didn't have much trouble moving the ball but had trouble finishing off drives. Despite his reputation as a forward-thinking offensive guru, Kliff Kingsbury was frustratingly conservative near the end zone, kicking a league-high 10 field goals from inside the 5-yard line, two more than the second-highest total, and twice as many as the third-highest. Let's hope that approach changes in 2020.
RB David Johnson
97 carries, 48 RB targets, 84 WR targets, 24 TE targets
Rankings and Projections
|Heath Cummings' projections|
|QB||Kyler Murray||4,227 YD, 26 TD, 12 INT; 425 Rush YD, 4 TD|
|RB||Kenyan Drake||1,059 YD, 8 TD; 53 REC, 412 YD, 2 TD|
|RB||Chase Edmonds||335 YD, 3 TD; 37 REC, 365 YD, 2 TD|
|WR||DeAndre Hopkins||141 TAR, 94 REC, 1,152 YD, 7 TD|
|WR||Christian Kirk||101 TAR, 65 REC, 747 YD, 6 TD|
|WR||Larry Fitzgerald||90 TAR, 59 REC, 627 YD, 5 TD|
|WR||Andy Isabella||45 TAR, 30 REC, 362 YD, 2 TD|
How does DeAndre Hopkins fit in Arizona's offense?
"Hopkins likely won't see the same high target share in the wide open Cardinals offense, but Arizona should throw substantially more passes. Though the Cardinals didn't see quite the spike in overall play volume many hoped for, their quick average time to snap suggests further upside in their overall play volume if they can sustain more drives. If that happens, Hopkins can reach his prior target totals while Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald still see plenty of looks." - Ben Gretch
One sleeper, one breakout and one bust
Before the Cardinals acquired Hopkins, Kirk was one of my favorite wide receivers to target, and I haven't changed my opinion too much. Obviously, Hopkins is going to be the top target in this passing offense, but the Cardinals showed last season they want the ball in Kirk's hands, too — he had 118 targets plus carries in just 13 games, a pace comparable to what D.J. Moore had before his injury. Kirk will need to be more efficient on a per-touch basis and in the red zone, but with Hopkins taking on more defensive attention than anyone else could last season, I'd bet on that. It's not hard to see a path to 100 targets and 10-15 carries for Kirk, which could be enough to get him close to 1,000 yards and a half-dozen or so touchdowns. This could be a very good offense; don't let Hopkins' presence scare you off Kirk.
There are two obvious choices here, and I could have gone with either Murray or Kenyan Drake. However, it seems pretty clear Drake already broke out in 2019, putting up a 1,600-plus-total-yard, 16-touchdown pace after joining the Cardinals. Murray, on the other hand, didn't really have more than a couple of games in a row playing at the level we're hoping for — specifically, from Week 9 through 11, he averaged 29.5 Fantasy points per game. Aside from that, it was a pretty up and down season, mostly because he struggled to get the ball in the end zone. That's going to change in 2020, and Hopkins is obviously a big part of that. However, I would also expect the Cardinals to be more aggressive with more trust in the weapons around Murray in year two, and that will make a difference, too. Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson may have made us a bit too confident in Murray's chances of making a superstar-level leap in his second season, but that's the kind of potential we're working with here.
Oh, another reason I didn't pick Drake as a breakout: I don't think he's doing it again. I think he's being drafted pretty close to his ceiling. Drake finished his eight-game run with the Cardinals with 159.4 Fantasy points, the fourth-highest total in the league, and his average rank among our experts is RB8. If he could keep that pace up, yeah, he'll be worth his draft price. However, Drake really only had three good games, in Weeks 9, 15, and 16; he scored seven of his eight touchdowns and 62.2% of his Fantasy points in those three games. How high would we be drafting Drake if he hadn't had a flukey two-game stretch with six touchdowns? He feels like more of a No. 2 running back to me.
AFC East: Bills | Jets | Patriots | Dolphins
NFC East: Giants | Cowboys | Eagles | Redskins
AFC South: Colts | Texans | Jaguars | Titans
NFC South: Panthers | Bucs | Falcons | Saints
AFC North: Ravens | Steelers | Browns | Bengals
NFC North: Packers | Vikings | Bears | Lions
AFC West: Chiefs | Broncos | Raiders | Chargers
NFC West: Seahawks | 49ers | Rams | Cardinals
So which Fantasy football busts should you completely avoid? And which running back going off the board early should you fade? Visit SportsLine now to get cheat sheets from the model that called Baker Mayfield's disappointing season, and find out.