Sleeper Series: Tyler Higbee
By Cody Smith
As we slowly inch closer to the beginning of the 2020 NFL season, its time to start doing your fantasy football research.
Who has good value? Who are some potential late round steals? What about potential busts?
Luckily for you, the folks at We Know Fantasy are here to help.
This article will kick off my summer Sleeper Series, looking at a player on each team that is currently being undervalued in fantasy drafts.
For this Sleeper Series we’ll stick to guys currently being drafted in the mid-to-late rounds. Let’s say, round seven or later.
We start with my favorite team, the Los Angeles Rams.
Looking at the Rams, one player stands out as a guy that is being under-drafted and can present some serious value in the middle rounds of your draft. That player is Tyler Higbee.
Higbee is currently going 87th overall, or as the 8.01 in 12-team PPR leagues. He’s being taken as the ninth tight-end coming off the board on draft day.
Last season, Higbee was a hot free agent commodity late in the season, and may have even helped fantasy teams bring home a championship. After a slow start, the Rams shifted away from Gerald Everett and toward Higbee as a receiving threat in their 12 personnel offense.
Through the first 11 weeks of the season, Higbee mustered just 21 receptions for 192 yards and one touchdown. From week 12 on (a 6-week span,) Higbee caught 48 passes for 542 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
That is obviously an unsustainable rate for the third-year tight end, as those numbers would suggest a season-long rate of 128-1,445-5.
But remember, there have been some significant changes to the Rams offense this past offseason. The Rams cut Todd Gurley for extra cap space and traded away Brandin Cooks to Houston for draft picks.
The removal of those two pieces of the offense leaves 121 targets unaccounted for that are sure to be distributed elsewhere. Higbee ought to see a chunk of those, especially in a Rams offense that seemed to shift to the tight end late last season.
Higbee is currently being drafted behind tight ends such as Hayden Hurst, Evan Engram and Rob Gronkowski and is being drafted around players such as Marlon Mack, Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Will Fuller and currently injured Deebo Samuel.
I’d rather have Higbee than most – if not all – of these options.
I believe Higbee sees a jump from his 60 receptions from last year which would also suggest an increase in receiving yards. It is also certainly in the realm of possibilities that Higbee sees a jump in touchdown production this season after hauling in just three in 2019.
Last year Higbee finished as TE8 but is currently being drafted as the TE9. An increase in his stats would indicate an increase in his finishing position in 2020. Don’t miss out on this value pick. Take Higbee in the middle rounds and don’t look back.