In the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast, Matt Harmon and Scott Pianowski examine the second-year wide out's fantasy potential alongside Tyreek Hill and some other new faces.
MATT HARMON: Jaylen Waddle-- there's going to be a sharing element here because, obviously, Tyreek Hill, who, talk about game breaker, talk about one of the best receivers in the NFL, has now entered this ecosystem that is also going under change because there's a new head coach-- Mike McDaniel, offensive coordinator obviously from the San Francisco 49ers.
There's a whole sort of like structural change here. I don't think that the little goofy RPO offense that they ran last year in Miami, I don't think it's going to really look anything like this version of a potentially more traditional West Coast style offense with obviously a lot of the kind of more modern sprinkle that the current Shanahan offenses have run.
So the interesting question here is with Jaylen Waddle, who-- there hasn't really been a different-- like, difference with a guy like DeVonta Smith. Like, I think the ADP has reacted to the fact that a dominant alpha receiver has entered Philadelphia and has pushed Smith down the board. Waddle, I think, maybe-- we haven't seen that as much. So how are we feeling about this second year receiver, who, I think we all agree, is a really, really good player?
But what is-- like, we're projecting a lower target share than you probably would have liked with a quarterback that we have questions about and an offense that probably is going to lean more run heavy than most across the league. So that's three things there that I think you have to ask pretty big questions about.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: Yeah, which is probably why I, you know, go traffic light. I'm going yellow light on Waddle and just a little bit nervous. We're going to find out if Tua is good. Because they've set him up to be successful. And the great thing about Tyreek Hill is he's one of those players that no matter what he does in the box score, he helps you. Because every play, the opponent has to be afraid that Tyreek Hill is going to run by everybody and score an 80-yard touchdown.
You know, I always say Randy Moss changed football. Because when he came into the league, the object of defense was like, oh, my god, we can't allow an 80-yard touchdown pass to Randy Moss every play. What are we going to do? Well, it's back up our safeties. Like, they're practically out of the stadium now. And it just changed defense. It changed the whole objective of what you were trying to do. Tyreek Hill is that type of guy. DeSean Jackson was that type of guy. Tyreek Hill is probably the best version of that type of guy. But how does he mesh with Tua?
You know, Waddle, even as he was impressive in his rookie year, it was not aesthetically pleasing to me, just to watch the way they used him with that tiny [INAUDIBLE] and all the throws you have right after the snap and all the short catches. He can average 10 yards a catch. That's not Waddle's fault. That's the offense he was placed in.
And so the question is how much more-- you know, we saw him at Alabama. It's not like this guy can't run the intermediate routes. And I'm curious how he graded. I don't even know what type of stuff they ran other than all those quick hitters last year. I'm curious how he graded in your metrics as a downfield receiver. But I'm curious how Miami is going to look, how Tua is going to be in a real offense with fully supported.
But as you said, they're going to run a lot. I think the defense is going to allow them to run a lot. I think they have that look of, you know, a 10 and 7 and 9 and 8 team, a quasi contender. And I don't think they want to be an aerial circus. So I'm probably going to watch this with much interest.
And I think a lot of times we'll be doing that Sunday night wrap-up show, we'll be talking about like a game. Miami just had. And we'll be sharpening our Tua takes and stuff like that or how-- yeah, how Tyreek Hill likes things. I talked last week about I wonder if Tyreek Hill a month into this will be like. Man, I'd pay my way back to Kansas City because it's just going to be so different with what he's getting into.
But Waddle for me is not a proactive pick. I'm not against taking him. But I just-- the quarterback makes me nervous. And this is a team that probably more than most teams, I think, wants to have a running component to their offense.
MATT HARMON: Yeah, I feel like that's kind of the right way to go about it. On Jaylen Waddle, the player, I think he absolutely shows the ability to get open on dig routes, post routes, nine routes, corner routes, like the more downfield vertical patterns like the intermediate areas like you mentioned. There's a lot more to his game than sort of those little bunny hop targets that he got last year. It just-- the question is, can the quarterback consistently hit those plays?
And I also wonder too. I feel like Jaylen Waddle because-- Tyreek Hill, obviously, is a big time game breaker. You know, he can take a slant and run at 80 yards of the house, whatever. But I think if you're designing like YAC opportunities, I feel like Jaylen Waddle is probably the slightly better player there.
I kind of wonder if he stays in that short area target role. Because if you're throwing deep balls-- like I mean, Jaylen Waddle, I think, has the potential to be a great deep ball receiver. Tyreek Hill already is the best deep ball receiver in the NFL, right?
So I think that there's going to be some push and pull there and it all comes back to Tua. I just-- I kind of agree with you that I feel like I'm very interested to see how this is going to happen. I'm probably going to want to watch it happen on somebody else's team, not my own.