In football, there are surprise breakouts, unexpected busts, and devastating injuries each year. Predictable unpredictability is in the very DNA of this game we all love. We can do all the research and preparation we want, but we are really at the mercy of the Football Gods.
With that in mind, members of the RoD Squad put their prognosticating skills to the test as they put forth their favorite bold, yet realistic, predictions for the 2021 NFL season.
Enough chatter, let’s get into it.
Duncan Smith (@duncafc):
1 – Tom Brady finishes as quarterback one on the season. He’s the GOAT, a man that simply defies time and logic. Bruce Arians’ quarterbacks always improve in their second year under his system, Brady finished as QB7 last year, and there’s no reason he can’t continue that trend and finish top of the pile this year.
2 – CeeDee Lamb finishes as wide receiver 1 overall. He’s an exceptional talent coupled with an exceptional quarterback in Dak Prescott. The Cowboys have an exciting offense and a questionable defense. This season has all of the makings of a breakout season for Lamb.
3 – Zach Wilson finishes the year as the best rookie quarterback. The pieces are all there in Gotham to make this happen. The Jets have an exciting wide receiver corps, a revamped O-line, a running back room full of competent but not elite backs who would demand a certain level of touches every week, and a brand new coaching staff. The defense has suffered some injury setbacks, which could lead to some high-scoring games. All Wilson needs to do is put the pieces together.
Rob Mongole (@therotorob):
1 – Deebo Samuel will outscore Brandon Aiyuk on a points per game basis. Neither receiver finishes in the Top 24. Don’t get me wrong, both receivers are talented. With questions surrounding the QB situation and George Kittle being the bonafide number 1 target, neither are able to produce for your fantasy team this season.
2 – Justin Fields leads all rookie QBs in points per game and has the highest ADP of the rookie QBs this time next season. Fields has two great field stretchers in Darnell Mooney and Marquise Goodwin, two reliable tight ends in Jimmy Graham and Cole Kmet, and a true alpha in Allen Robinson. If defenses stack the box to prevent the QB run, I expect Mooney and Goodwin to get behind the defense often. Bonus Bold Prediction – Mooney finishes as a top-24 WR in standard scoring formats.
3 – Jared Goff finishes the year as a Top 12 QB. He is not the 12th most talented QB in the league, but the Lions are bad and I am expecting a lot of garbage time production from their passing offense. Bonus Bold Prediction – T.J. Hockenson finishes the year as the TE3 ahead of Kittle.
Ryan Bickerstaff (@thedevydirtbag):
1 – Antonio Gibson finishes as a top-five fantasy running back. The Washington Football Team wants to use Gibson in a role similar to that of Christian McCaffrey’s. Not only that, Gibson possesses the skill set to make that kind of usage a reality. Okay, maybe not 100% of CMC, but damn close. Keep in mind, Gibson is a converted college receiver and still learning the running back position. His potential is astronomical.
2 – Three rookie wide receivers go over 1000 yards; Ja’Marr Chase isn’t one of them. That’s right. I have DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle, and Elijah Moore all projected to go over 1000 receiving yards as rookies. After a year away from football and faced with much more competition than his rookie compadres for targets, don’t be shocked when Chase underperforms to expectations – and relative to his peers.
3 – Zach Wilson will be the highest-ranked dynasty quarterback in his class, and top eight overall by the end of the season. Duncan already discussed Wilson, but I want to expand on him. Already a top 10 dynasty QB in my eyes, an Offensive Rookie of the Year performance will raise Wilson to that status and then some in the eyes of the masses. Hop aboard this train while you still can. This is the cheapest Wilson will ever be in dynasty.
What are your favorite bold predictions for the 2021 NFL season?
Thanks for reading!