Boudewijn

2019 Return Yard Sleepers

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Posted (edited)

If you play in a return yard league, it can often be interesting to reach a bit for a player who would normally drop some rounds, simply because of the bonus of the return yards he can bring you.

I compiled 4 lists, based on last years production (both rushing/receiving, and returning), and today’s ADP (I used https://fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp/half-ppr). I collected the returners in 4 groups:

  • Players who would be a top pick anyway but also give you those return yards
  • Players who would be a low pick, but go over 1000 yards with the return yards
  • Players who would be undrafted in a 12 team (at least according to FFC) but still go over 1000 yards
  • Some further special nominees, including a couple guys who produced last year on half a season.

 

1)      Top level picks with a bonus

Player

Age

Tm

Draft pick

G

Touch

YScm

APYd

KickYd

PuntYd

Tyreek Hill

24

KAN

5.11

16

109

1630

1843

0

213

Alvin Kamara

23

NOR

1.03

15

275

1592

1800

126

82

Tyler Lockett

26

SEA

5.02

16

70

1034

1670

493

143

Tarik Cohen

23

CHI

5.07

16

170

1169

1599

22

411

Kenyan Drake

24

MIA

5.02

16

173

1012

1225

213

0

 

These are the guys that would be picked high anyway; obviously Tyreek Hill has a huge asterisk right now, pending the league decision.

2)      Low picks who go over 1000 yards

 

Player

Age

Tm

Draft pick

G

Touch

YScm

APYd

KickYd

PuntYd

Dede Westbrook

25

JAX

10.08

16

75

815

1118

37

266

Curtis Samuel

22

CAR

11.03

13

47

578

787

209

0

 

Samuel wouldn’t actually go over 1000 yards, but he only played limited games, and the return yards provided a nice bonus.

 

3)      Undrafted who go over 1000 yards with the return yards

Player

Age

Tm

Draft pick

G

Touch

YScm

APYd

KickYd

PuntYd

Andre Roberts

30

NYJ

#N/A

16

12

99

1597

1174

324

Alex Erickson

26

CIN

#N/A

16

23

189

1450

1049

212

Cordarrelle Patterson

27

NWE

#N/A

15

63

475

1138

663

0

Ryan Switzer

24

PIT

#N/A

16

42

274

1133

607

252

Jakeem Grant

26

MIA

#N/A

10

22

273

1036

535

228

 

This list includes Andre Roberts, who hasn’t had 200 yards receiving in the past 4 seasons, but on the other hand returned for 1000+ yards in 4 out of the last 5! Even in again another team (Buffalo), even at 31, this guy is worth a flyer in a return yard league.

Alex Erickson has an even better story; he’s still young but had already three straight 1000+ yard returning seasons. Unfortunately, he has only had one career TD (as a receiver).

4)      Also-rans

Player

Age

Tm

Draft pick

G

Touch

YScm

APYd

KickYd

PuntYd

Corey Coleman

24

NYG

#N/A

8

6

76

693

598

19

Corey Clement

24

PHI

#N/A

11

90

451

801

333

17

Isaiah McKenzie

23

2TM

#N/A

8

28

245

582

237

100

Dwayne Harris

31

OAK

#N/A

15

8

52

996

663

281

DeAndre Carter

25

2TM

#N/A

14

23

223

897

425

249

Tremon Smith

22

KAN

#N/A

14

0

0

886

886

0

Taysom Hill

28

NOR

#N/A

16

40

200

546

348

0

 

In this list I’d like to highlight Corey Coleman and Isaiah McKenzie, who did respectable stuff on half a season; the rest is probably not that interesting.

Edit: crap, I see the table formatting is completely fuXX0red. I'll see if I can fix that later, my apologies.

Edited by Boudewijn
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Let's try that table again, formatted with the power of 1997:

Player...............Draft pick    Games/Yds    Kick + Punt return
Tyreek Hill..................5.11    16 / 1630    0 + 213
Alvin Kamara..............1.03    15 / 1592    126 + 82
Tyler Lockett...............5.02    16 / 1034    493 + 143
Tarik Cohen................5.07    16 / 1169    22 + 411
Kenyan Drake.............5.02    16 / 1012    213 + 0
 Level 2:               
Dede Westbrook.........10.08    16 / 815    37 + 266
Curtis Samuel.............11.03    13 / 578    209 + 0
 Level 3:               
Andre Roberts............#N/A    16 / 99    1174 + 324
Alex Erickson.............#N/A    16 / 189    1049 + 212

Cordarrelle Patterson...#N/A    15 / 475    663 + 0
Ryan Switzer................#N/A    16 / 274    607 + 252
Jakeem Grant..............#N/A    10 / 273    535 + 228
 Level 4:               .
Corey Coleman..........#N/A    8 / 76    598 + 19
Corey Clement ..........#N/A    11 / 451    333 + 17
Isaiah McKenzie........#N/A    8 / 245    237 + 100
Dwayne Harris...........#N/A    15 / 52    663 + 281
DeAndre Carter..........#N/A    14 / 223    425 + 249
Tremon Smith............#N/A    14 / 0    886 + 0
Taysom Hill................#N/A    16 / 200    348 + 0
 

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Great posts @Boudewijn

 

Do y'all think lockett still gonna return in 2019 with Baldwin gone? 

 

It's real tough to find info on this going into the seasons but the only thing I've seen so far is lockett himself claiming he still wants to be the return man. 

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They drafted FS Ugo Amadi, who did some decent punt return work, so that might eat a bit into Lockett's volume:

https://www.nashvillepost.com/sports/people/blog/21031129/new-role-helps-amadi-add-to-his-td-total-reputation

"Amadi, an Overton High School graduate, is the latest Pac-12 Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance Saturday against UCLA. Most notably, he returned a punt 56 yards for a touchdown."

 

Carroll also commented on this:

https://seahawkswire.usatoday.com/2019/05/21/dk-metcalf-not-likely-to-factor-into-seahawks-return-game/

"He was much more positive regarding Amadi, saying he looks comfortable catching the ball and that he’s well-equipped to be a returner."

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Lockett has been losing return yards every year.

 

I would add Jojo to the level 3, whoever is McVeys return man tends to be worth owning.

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14 hours ago, hoppychokes said:

Lockett has been losing return yards every year.

 

I would add Jojo to the level 3, whoever is McVeys return man tends to be worth owning.

JoJo is interesting but he doesn't come close to my requirements for group 3. Those would be the guys who I expect to go undrafted in a 12-team league, but last season got over 1000 yards with the return yards.

As I see I messed up the numbers in the table for that group, here are the numbers again:

Player..........................Age    Tm    G    YScm     APYd    KickYd    PuntYd
Andre Roberts................30    NYJ    16    1174    1597    99    324
Alex Erickson.................26    CIN    16    1049    1450    189    212
Cordarrelle Patterson.....27    NWE  15    663    1138    475    0
Ryan Switzer..................24    PIT    16    607    1133    274    252
Jakeem Grant................26    MIA    10    535    1036    273    228

JoJo had 388 return yards, which is great, but he would need another 600-700 receiving yards to make this group, and I don't see that happening anywhere soon.

 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Boudewijn said:

JoJo had 388 return yards, which is great, but he would need another 600-700 receiving yards to make this group, and I don't see that happening anywhere soon.

 

He also broke his hand in September and was used sparingly. McVey is aggressive and lets his returners run everything out; he let Pharoh fumble away the playoffs without flipping him out. For me its moreso predicting production from the Rams previous stats than Jojos specifically. Cooper is gone, Countess is gone Jojo is a lock for 1k IMO.

Edited by hoppychokes

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On 7/14/2019 at 2:49 PM, Dreams And Dwightmares said:

Great posts @Boudewijn

 

Do y'all think lockett still gonna return in 2019 with Baldwin gone? 

 

It's real tough to find info on this going into the seasons but the only thing I've seen so far is lockett himself claiming he still wants to be the return man. 

I'm watching Lockett closely.  I think he still ends up returning punts and maybe only situationally for kickoffs.  Last article I read (which I couldn't find right now) had Carroll saying that while they were hoping one of the other potential returners would step up (since they have been hoping to shift Lockett out of some of his return duties since last season), it would be difficult to remove Lockett (particularly on punts) since he is so good at them.  At least that was my take away.

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Per Carroll on lightening Lockett's return role: “We’re always thinking that way,” head coach Pete Carroll said in May. “We’ve been thinking that way for a few years. We look for opportunities and stuff like that and see if we can maximize his play however we do that. He’s such a great catcher and a great return guy it’s hard to put somebody else in his spot. But, we continue to always lean that way. We’d rather have him pick and choose when we do it, particularly on the kickoffs. He’s just such a great punt returner, it’s hard to take him out of there.”

 

https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/06/20/tyler-lockett-still-wants-to-handle-returns-though-seahawks-exploring-options/

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I'm paying close attention to Jakeem Grant to start the season in return yardage leagues.  He was noted at the end of tier 3 in the OP's post, but he was a viable flex play the first 8 weeks of the season in return yardage leagues, particularly standard leagues.  If he continues to return kickoffs and is able to get more involved on offense, he could be a nice pickup.  He also just signed a sizable contract extension, indicating to me that is role may be expanding.  He didn't get chump change.

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Great list, @Boudewijn.  Don't forget Tony Pollard.  Unless he's taking on such a large role on offense that he can't be used there (in which case you're just happy he's getting that volume), Pollard has a lot of potential returning kickoffs.  He had 7 career kickoff return TDs in college (tied for the all-time record).

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13 minutes ago, WEIL3R said:

I'm paying close attention to Jakeem Grant to start the season in return yardage leagues.  He was noted at the end of tier 3 in the OP's post, but he was a viable flex play the first 8 weeks of the season in return yardage leagues, particularly standard leagues.  If he continues to return kickoffs and is able to get more involved on offense, he could be a nice pickup.  He also just signed a sizable contract extension, indicating to me that is role may be expanding.  He didn't get chump change.

I agree Grant is one to watch. I had him last year and he provided some value before his injury. The fact that they extended him before the 2019 regular season has even begun, is a very nice sign. 

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With McKissic cut, Lockett is in line to return both punts and kicks.  Last year he returned punts and only returned kicks occasionally.  He could be in for a monster year in return yardage leagues (I should say another monster year as he was WR7 last year in my league) unless they have Penny assist with kick returns.  

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12 minutes ago, WEIL3R said:

With McKissic cut, Lockett is in line to return both punts and kicks.  Last year he returned punts and only returned kicks occasionally.  He could be in for a monster year in return yardage leagues (I should say another monster year as he was WR7 last year in my league) unless they have Penny assist with kick returns.  

I'd be shocked if they use Lockett on kick offs.  With Doug Baldwin gone, he's pretty much their only decent WR.  I can't see them risking him getting hurt returning kicks.

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1 minute ago, murraygd13 said:

I'd be shocked if they use Lockett on kick offs.  With Doug Baldwin gone, he's pretty much their only decent WR.  I can't see them risking him getting hurt returning kicks.

I would have agreed with you all summer.  Now I'm not so sure.  He's listed at both positions on all depth charts, but it's possible Penny or Amadi contribute to the return game as well.  They don't really have anyone else.

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Diontae Johnson

He also succeeded on special teams, averaging over 20 yards per punt return and over 23 yards per kick return

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Everyone is sleeping on Christian Kirk. It's been confirmed he will be the primary punt returner. He already is expected to get a high amount of targets in the passing game and has a great connection w the new qb.

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On 8/22/2019 at 1:56 PM, WEIL3R said:

I'm paying close attention to Jakeem Grant to start the season in return yardage leagues.  He was noted at the end of tier 3 in the OP's post, but he was a viable flex play the first 8 weeks of the season in return yardage leagues, particularly standard leagues.  If he continues to return kickoffs and is able to get more involved on offense, he could be a nice pickup.  He also just signed a sizable contract extension, indicating to me that is role may be expanding.  He didn't get chump change.

For me it is Grant too. Shhhhssssshhhhhh.... my hidden weapon. Shhhssssshhhhssshhsssssshhhhhhhh

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Diontae Spencer

 

 Diontae Spencer hoping to cure Broncos' returner woes

Sep 02, 2019

Recently signed returner Diontae Spencer says his goal for Monday night's regular-season opener in Oakland is to be consistent and put the offense in good field position.

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Here's another returner

 

TJ Logan for the Bucs

 

 Logan only got in 18 snaps on offense and 10 on special teams before the aforementioned wrist injury, but he produced four runs for 24 yards, two kickoff returns for 71 yards and one punt return for 10 yards. It's no wonder Arians felt like he had unfinished business with Logan.

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Probably a question for a Chiefs homer or return yardage league guru....I'm seeing on the week 1 stats that Armani Watts was in on a KR at some point.. Was that a situation where Tyreek went down and they pulled Hardman from special teams for more use at WR?  Or can we expect Hardman to retain return duties, even with the increased role in the offense? 

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