Sammy Watkins signed a three-year, $48 million contract with the Chiefs this offseason, and he will line up as the No. 2 receiver opposite Tyreek Hill. Watkins spent 2017 with the Rams, and finished as the No. 32 receiver in standard leagues. Watkins played 15 games, which was the second most of his career, and his eight touchdowns were also the second-best mark for Watkins. But he managed just four games with double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league. Watkins only had four games with more than five targets in a game and never had more than nine, so there's hope he'll be more invovled with the Chiefs. In Kansas City, Watkins should be the No. 3 receiving option behind Hill and Travis Kelce, and hopefully new starting quarterback Patrick Mahomes will build a solid rapport with Watkins. We like Watkins as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver, and he's worth a mid-round pick in all formats. He still has plenty of potential, and with 100-plus targets (that's happened once in his career) he could be around 65 catches, 900 yards and six touchdowns.
Watkins was held without a catch on three targets in Friday's preseason game against Atlanta. The three targets included a drop, an interception and another pass that was almost picked off. Watkins simply looked uncomfortable and unfocused, while fellow wideout Tyreek Hill did his usual thing with four catches for 87 yards and a touchdown. Although one bad half isn't cause for panic, it becomes slightly more problematic once we've considered Patrick Mahomes' preference for throwing to Hill over Watkins during practice, per ESPN.com's Adam Teicher. Watkins should improve on last year's disappointing mark of 4.7 targets per game, but a return to his Buffalo volume (7.4 per game) seems overly optimistic.
Watkins is in uniform for Thursday's preseason opener against the Texans, Nate Taylor of The Athletic Kansas City reports. Watkins, who missed practice time this week after picking up a hip injury during Monday's session, is going through pregame drills without any noticeable problem. It isn't certain if he'll actually log any snaps Thursday, but Watkins' mere availability for an exhibition game suggests that injury he was dealing with isn't anything too worrisome.
Watkins (hip) won't practice Tuesday, Adam Teicher of ESPN.com reports. Watkins walked out on the field with his teammates to observe practice, supporting the notion that the injury he suffered Monday isn't serious. While he'll likely be held out of Thursday's preseason opener against the Texans, this doesn't seem like anything that will threaten his Week 1 availability.
Watkins was forced out of Monday's practice early due to a hip issue, BJ Kissel of the Chiefs' official site reports. On the plus side, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network relays that Watkins' injury isn't major and that the wideout's exit from practice is being portrayed as precautionary. When healthy, Watkins is slated to start opposite Tyreek Hill, with the three-year, $48 million contract the Chiefs handed Watkins this offseason clearly indicative of the big plans the team has for the 2014 first-rounder.
Watkins said Tuesday that Chiefs head coach Andy Reid is making him a better player by asking him to learn all the receiver positions in the Kansas City offense, Adam Teicher of ESPN.com reports. "I've never been in an offense like this, around a coach that just feels like he's obsessed with the game and makes you want to be obsessed with it, too, to know more about the offense," said Watkins. "The more you break it down the more you can be available and switching different positions." In addition to praising his new coach, Watkins is taking a not-so-subtle shot at Rams boss Sean McVay, who often used the speedy wideout as little more than a distraction to open things up for Todd Gurley, Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp. Despite catching just 39 passes in 15 games with Los Angeles, the 25-year-old comfortably topped the free-agent market at his position this offseason, landing a three-year, $48 million deal with $30 million guaranteed. While Kansas City isn't the best situation for piling up a ton of targets, Watkins should get more looks than he did last year and likely will be efficient with his opportunities in an offense that also has Kareem Hunt, Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill and a solid line. Watkins already seems to have a strong rapport with Reid and starting quarterback Patrick Mahomes, perhaps making a case to challenge Hill and Kelce for the team target lead. It helps that Watkins will have a full offseason and training camp with his new team after not joining the Rams until mid-August last year.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|1||09/09||@Los Angeles Chargers||7||17.00|
|3||09/23||San Francisco 49ers||23||20.38|
|6||10/15||@New England Patriots||27||22.58|
|11||11/20||@Los Angeles Rams||11||18.47|
|15||12/14||Los Angeles Chargers||7||17.00|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||73||42||690||6||31||16.43||105|