Nobody wants to draft Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill in fantasy football, but some will be too tempted by the value. At full strength, Hill has the potential to be the best receiver in fantasy football and finished 2018 as the WR1 in standard scoring. Most fantasy owners weren’t planning on drafting Hill in any format, but that could change after Nate Taylor of The Athletic reported that Hill could serve a “maximum” suspension of four games. Based on this new information, let’s take a dive into Hill’s fantasy value and where you should select him, if he’s on your board.
Update: Hill will not miss any games to suspension in 2019. If you’re comfortable drafting him, take him in the first two rounds.
2019 Fantasy Football Outlook: Tyreek Hill
Let’s start by saying this: nobody will blame you if you pass on Tyreek Hill. I know I won’t be drafting him in any format. Tyreek Hill is an objectively horrible human being who has no right being a part of society, much less a star athlete. Fantasy football is, first and foremost, all about having fun and owners naturally root for their players to perform well. I personally find the idea of rooting for Tyreek Hill to be reprehensible, so don’t draft him if his presence will ruin your enjoyment of fantasy football.
That said, a decent portion of fantasy owners will want to take Hill if he falls far enough in the draft. Taking emotion out of it, let’s take a look at what Hill did in 2018 and what he should do in 2019.
Tyreek Hill’s speed and Patrick Mahomes’ arm are a match made in heaven, and the duo took the world by storm in 2018. Hill appeared in all 16 games, recording 87 receptions for 1,479 yards and 12 touchdowns. Additionally, he added another 151 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Hill’s 251.0 fantasy points made him the WR1 in standard scoring, and he earned First-Team All-Pro honors for his great season.
The craziest thing is that everything he did appears to be sustainable. His 63.5% catch rate was the lowest of his career and might actually improve in 2019. Despite the pedestrian catch rate, Hill still recorded the fourth-most yards per route run (2.98). His speed makes him a threat to score every time he touches the ball, and he saw the 11th-most targets in the league. He’s not just a deep threat, as his 10 red zone receptions were the 12th-most in the league. Basically, Hill can get open at any portion of the field and is arguably the most disruptive big-play threat in the league.
If it weren’t for the looming suspension, Tyreek Hill would be a unanimous first-round pick and might even be the first wide receiver off the board. However, he’s going to miss some amount of time, even if the exact length of the suspension isn’t known as of this posting. For the sake of argument, let’s assume Hill receives a four-game suspension.
Hill averaged 15.1 fantasy points per game last season, and the underlying statistics suggest he’s capable of putting up similar numbers in 2019. When extrapolating that average over a 12-game season, Hill would have 181.2 total fantasy points. This would have made him the WR10, locking him right between Juju Smith-Schuster and Robert Woods.
Hill’s easily worth a four-week stash, and he’ll be around during the fantasy football championship. Even with four weeks of inactivity, Hill is so good that he can still find a way to finish as a top-12 wide receiver. However, when he’s on the field, he should give you top-five production. Hill recorded at least 60 yards or a touchdown in 12 of his 16 games, and two of those times he finished with over 50 yards. He typically won’t be the reason you lose your matchup, but he can be the reason you win. Hill had six multi-touchdown games and six 100-yard games throughout the season. Seasons like this normally aren’t sustainable, but we’ve already established that Hill has the ability to do this again.
Tyreek Hill Average Draft Position
As of this posting, Fantasy Football Calculator currently projects Tyreek Hill go be selected with the 47th overall pick. This puts Hill right between Brandin Cooks, Kenny Golladay, and Robert Woods and just behind players like Julian Edelman and Stefon Diggs.
Objectively, getting Hill this late would be a steal. While he would waste a roster spot for the first four weeks of the season, his value over the final 12 games more than make up for the difference. Cooks, Golladay, and Woods all offer WR2 potential, but none have the ability to singlehandedly win a matchup like Hill. Considering Hill will be missing the first four weeks of the season, you should be able to find a short-term starter before bye weeks kick in. If you’re comfortable with grabbing Hill in the first place, make sure to take him late in the third round.
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