NFL Free Agency Fantasy Fallout: Stefon Diggs injects life in the Buffalo passing game
The Bills landed a legitimate No. 1. Will it push Josh Allen and Buffalo's passing game to new heights?
The Bills sent Minnesota first-, fifth- and sixth-round picks in 2020 and a fourth-round pick in 2021 for Diggs and a 2020 seventh-round pick. If only the Texans got something similar in return for DeAndre Hopkins, but that's a story for another day.
For Diggs, his new beginning is with Josh Allen in Buffalo, and hopefully this is a good move for his Fantasy value. I'm cautiously optimistic, but I don't think much is going to change for Diggs statistically.
He was good last year with 63 catches for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns on 94 targets, and I expect him to be in a similar range in 2020 with the Bills. Allen, as we know, isn't the most accurate of passers, completing 58.8 percent of his throws last season. By comparison, Kirk Cousins completed 69.1 percent of his passes for the Vikings in 2019.
Now, where Allen and Diggs should do well is taking shots down the field, and Diggs is coming off a career-best 17.9 yards per catch. Of receivers with at least 70 targets last year, Diggs is tied for fourth in that category — behind Mike Williams (20.4), A.J. Brown (20.2) and Kenny Golladay (18.3) and equal with Breshad Perriman (17.9).
In 2019, Brown led Buffalo with 115 targets, and he finished with 72 catches for 1,060 yards and six touchdowns. Beasley had 106 targets, which led to 67 catches for 778 yards and six touchdowns.
I doubt Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll will give Allen the chance to have three receivers with more than 100 targets, but Diggs should clearly be the No. 1 option in the passing game. He should be considered a quality No. 2 Fantasy receiver worth drafting in Round 4.
As for Allen, he was already someone I liked as a No. 1 Fantasy quarterback, and this move only enhances his value. I would draft him as the No. 7 quarterback this season, and he could challenge to be a top-five option in what should be a breakout campaign.
Brown loses with Diggs joining the roster, but not by much. He was a high-end No. 3 Fantasy receiver, but I would still draft him as a key reserve with a mid-round pick. And Beasley is only worth drafting with a late-round pick in PPR.
In Minnesota, Cousins obviously loses with Diggs gone, but no one was planning to draft him as a starter. He's a No. 2 quarterback to use as a bye-week or injury replacement, and we'll see what the Vikings do to replace Diggs in the NFL Draft.
Adam Thielen wins in this transaction because he goes from sharing the marquee with Diggs to clearly being the No. 1 option in the passing game. Thielen is worth drafting no later than Round 3 in all leagues.
Kyle Rudolph gets a boost as well, but he's still just a No. 2 tight end and not worth drafting in most leagues. If there's a sleeper to target it could be Bisi Johnson who, for now, appears to be the starter opposite Thielen. But he's only worth a late-round pick in all formats.
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