Who doesn’t love a bold predictions list? While most don’t pan out it is still fun to look at what analysts and rankers think is possible and who they have strong convictions over. I want to do this list to have a little fun and take some shots at what I think is possible by seasons end. I want to stress this point however. I AM NOT factoring in these bold predictions into my rankings or outlooks. While I do see these things as possibilities and think that they very well could come to fruition, I am not going to advise everyone to take them at face value. For instance if I say a WR could finish top 10 that doesn’t mean that I will have them ranked there. It will be close I am in the market of helping fantasy owners not hurting them with a prediction that could end up being off base. With that said lets have some fun and make some bold predictions!
Dante Pettis will be a top 20 WR in 2019
If you have followed me on any social media you will know of my deep love for Dante Pettis in 2019. I love his versatility to play any spot as a WR and I think he will be the top weapon for QB Jimmy Garoppolo that is not named George Kittle. I am not worried about the addition of slot man Deebo Samuels or the remaining WR from 2018. Pettis flashed enough for me to see him as the leading man with upside with Garoppolo coming back from his season ending injury. I love his draft price as well and he reminds me of Kenny Golladay last year as you were able to grab him in the later rounds if you were a believer which paid off. I think he finishes as a solid WR2 for fantasy.
Matt Ryan will finish as a top 3 QB once again in 2019
While Ryan usually bounces back and forth in fantasy every year, this year is where he breaks the trend. He has the best group of weapons that he has ever had surrounding him and he will look to capitalize on his astounding 13 games inside of a dome. Ryan has statistically been much better inside of a dome especially for fantasy and with 13 of his 16 games inside of a dome, Ryan has the best chance to finish top 3 than he has in any recent season. The Falcons have done well over time adding weapons for Ryan to throw to and with the draft choice of WR Riley Ridley last season, Ryan seemed to take that step forward. The biggest thing against him is that he traditionally bounces back and forth between a top 10 finish to outside of the top 10 year to year. This is more coincidence to me than a predictable trend and I will take things one step further and predict that he will finish top 3 once again in 2019.
Tom Brady will finish outside the top 20
I know the fate of all before me that have called for the decline of Tom Brady, but I will take up that torch in 2019! Brady finished as QB14 last season and averaged 17.5 fantasy points per game making him the 17th most consistent QB overall. He did this with Josh Gordon (at least at times) and an, admittingly, shell of Gronkowski who was used to draw coverage more than contribute as a weapon. The Patriots did draft N’Keal Harry to give Brady a big target, but they have little behind him and Julian Edelman. They signed Austin Seferian-Jenkins and got Ben Watson to come out of retirement to attempt to replace Gronk, but this will not be enough. Brady was already on a bit of a decline last season for fantasy and will do the same again in 2019 as the Patriots look to run the ball more and play time management to win their games. Brady to me is more of an Alex Smith for fantasy with is slightly higher ceiling and I don’t see him finishing inside the top 20 at QB.
Todd Gurley will still finish as a Top 3 RB
This shouldn’t have to be a bold prediction, but the drop in Gurley’s draft price warrants this prediction. Gurley will see his workload scaled back no doubt, but I don’t see this as a bad thing. He will still see the important carries around the goaline and when the Rams are in a touch situation they will not sit their arguably best weapon on the bench. He will still have the ability to reach the endzone 15 plus times in 2019 and that is not including the damage he will do through the air. The hate has gone way to far on Gurley and it will end up giving owners that draft him a massive value.
Noah Fant will beat out T.J. Hockenson in year 1 for fantasy
Former college teammates Fant and Hockenson went to great situations in terms of their fantasy value and I think they will both perform well in year 1 for fantasy. However, I see Fant as the man to finish higher in 2019. I see Fant in a better situation to score more fantasy points as the Broncos starter rather than Hockenson starting for the Lions and sharing snaps with TE Jesse James. Fant has a lot less receiving talent around him in Denver and a QB that has produced top fantasy TE’s in the past when he has a talented one. Fant could very well lead the Broncos in receiving Touchdowns and has a better chance to see more starting reps than Hockenson does with the Lions. Don’t take this as a knock on Hockenson. I think he has amazing potential and over time he could be a top 5 TE in fantasy, but in year 1 with a pretty stacked Lions receiving core compared to the Broncos, give me the athletic pass catcher Noah Fant who has more upside to me.
Sammy Watkins will FINALLY finish as a WR1 by seasons end
It is finally time to be hyped about Sammy Watkins again and this time it will pay off in buckets of fantasy goodness. Tyreek Hill has been suspended from all football activities and the team has even drafted a sudo-replacement in Mecole Hardman. When this happened my love for Watkins in 2019 was cemented. I am not going to predict a speedy rookie to be the top WR on the high powered Chiefs like other have and I will put my chips in on Watkins instead. He already has 1 year in the system and will now look to get a massive target increase with Hill gone. This will result in a top 12 finish in my opinion and should very easily make him the fantasy asset he was once thought to be. Grab him now when his draft price is cheaper and take him with confidence in August.
Greg Olsen and Delanie Walker will BOTH finish as Top 10 TE’s
I have been shot down consistently when talking about Walker and Olsen all offseason and I do not understand why. These are 2 TE’s that have been top scorers at their position when on the field and are now being treated like after thoughts. They have not really missed a step when on the field and while they have been hurt recently they are not injury prone players and haven’t been for most of their careers. Both are being taken round 10 or later in drafts and will be massive values as I predict a major comeback season for both finishing inside the top 10 as top targets for their teams. The hate has gone way to far on Olsen and Walker so I will gladly capitalize on their value.
Geronimo Allison will finish in the Top 30 WR’s and has a shot to finish as a WR2
Geronimo Allison is in a prime position to be the number 2 target for Aaron Rodgers and a lot of people have told me they do not believe this to be the case. The number 2 WR for Aaron Rodgers has always been great for fantasy and Allison will be that in 2019. The pair of rookies in Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Equanimeous St. Brown did not really do much to replace Allison when he went down in 2018 and Allison signed a contract extension while losing the competition of Randall Cobb and not seeing any added in the offseason. All things went his way in the offseason yet few believe he will be the WR 2 for the Packers and I am baffled by it. Allison should easily be a high end WR3 and has the upside to finish as a WR2 by years end and I believe he does just that.
D.K. Metcalf will finish as the Top Rookie WR for fantasy
The loss of Doug Baldwin in Seattle is a big one and I am by no means stating that Metcalf will replace him entirely. I am saying that he will see more than enough work to finish as the top rookie WR over N’Keal Harry of the Patriots. I see Metcalf having a Calvin Ridley-esk season and he could very well see near double digit Touchdowns in year 1 with the Seahawks. There are a lot of open targets in Seattle and while Tyler Lockett stretches the field and takes the deep balls, Metcalf can be the big possession receiver that will give Wilson a top option to win against coverage when the ball is in the air. Metcalf will also be a top redzone target and could very well lead the team in receiving Touchdowns when all is said and done. His upside is enormous to me.
So what do you think? Do you agree with any of the 9 Bold Predictions? What are some of your Bold Predictions? Let us know and be sure to share and follow us on our social media pages to stay up to date on when we upload! We are Finish First Fantasy on Facebook, @Finish1Fantasy on Twitter, and we are @finishfirstfantasy on Instagram. Click on the link below to sign up for our newsletter for the latest publications on our site, special discounts, and membership rewards!
By Ryan Larrison, Contributor, Fantasy Football for the People