Tyler Boyd Fantasy Football Profile
Tyler Boyd exploded onto the scene in 2018 with a breakout campaign of 76 catches, 1,028 yards, and 7 touchdowns, while only playing in 14 games. In 2019, Boyd enters the season with expectations and is a known commodity that has a 5th round ADP (55 overall). The big difference is that 2019 brings a new head coach into the mix for the Bengals. Zac Taylor spent the last 2 seasons with Sean McVay and the Rams as the Assistant Wide Receivers coach (2017) and the Quarterbacks coach (2018). It is expected that he will bring many of the Rams offensive schemes with him. This bodes well for Boyd as the Rams focus on their best players and utilize the slot receiver often.
Boyd’s current ADP is making him the WR25 overall a high-end WR3/low end WR2. Based on what Boyd was able to accomplish last year, this is a nice spot to grab him. Boyd was on pace for 123 targets, 87 catches, 1,175 yards, and 8 touchdowns. These full-season stats would have scored 252.5 fantasy points and made him the WR13 overall. This would be up from his WR17 (221.1 points) overall finish he had in 2018 with just 14 games played.
There was concern early on that with AJ Green back, Boyd would see a reduced role in the offense. We know now that Green is most likely going to miss multiple games to start the 2019 campaign, opening the door for Boyd to take over as the team’s number 1. Boyd and Green played together in 8 games in 2018. Boyd was still solid in these outings. He caught 49 balls for 620 yards and 5 touchdowns. This 16 game pace would have given Boyd 98 catches, 1,240 yards, and 10 touchdowns. So as you can see, Green being on the field does not limit Boyd, it actually benefits him because defenses are not able to focus their attention on just him. The chart below shows Boyd’s targets, catches, yards, and touchdowns when Green was on the field for the entire game vs. when he was not.
|Weeks With A.J Green|
|Weeks Without A.J Green|
As I stated earlier, I expect new head coach Zac Taylor to utilize the slot often in the passing game. In 2018, Boyd ran out of the slot 73.28% of the time. When targeted, his quarterback had a QB rating of 122. These same quarterbacks did not throw a single interception in the 108 targets that Boyd received. It is important to note that although Boyd’s primary position was the slot, he did excel on the targets he received while running his routes on the outside. When lining up wide on either side of the formation, Boyd received 25 targets, catching 20 of them and scoring 4 touchdowns.
Data for this graphic provided by: The Quant Edge
If we take a quick look at the first preseason game where the Bengals starters played one series, it is apparent that Boyd will be featured in the passing game. Andy Dalton threw 9 passes in the game. 4 of those were directed at Boyd. Furthermore, All 4 of those passes to Boyd, came within Dalton’s first 5 passes. Boyd is trusted and Dalton will force the ball to his most trusted assets. With Green being out early on Boyd will be leaned on heavily by Dalton.
Most of the projections I am seeing are expecting Boyd to take a step back statistically in 2019. FantasyData is projecting 70 catches, 881 yards, and 7 touchdowns. This would give him 198.4 PPR points in the 2019 season. This would have made him WR23 in 2018. With Boyd being drafted as the WR25 right now, he is being drafted right around where he should be. Boyd does have the potential to be a top 20 receiver again in 2019 but if his ADP starts creeping up, he may be too rich to return value.
I really like Boyd at his current 5th round ADP. He has the potential to finish as a mid to high WR2 and he could be your WR3 depending on your draft. I truly think the Bengals staff is going to lean heavily on Boyd in 2019 after Green has struggled to stay healthy the last couple seasons. I think they are going to continue to groom Boyd to be the team’s new number 1. However, if I start to see his ADP climb much higher, I will start to pass on Boyd take other receivers going in that same range.