Only Julio Jones reeled in more receiving yards than DeAndre Hopkins did last season. Even so, Nuk is going off the board first in 2019 fantasy football drafts while Jones has been the second or third wide receiver selected. It makes perfect sense for a number of reasons. Hopkins has played in at least 16 games in all but one of his six NFL seasons, and the one season he failed to do so, he still took the field 15 of times. Second, he enters 2019-20 off a career campaign in which he hauled in 115 receptions and turned them into 1,572 yards and 11 TD. On top of all that, he averaged 7.2 receptions per game and has proven time and time again that he is one of the elite wide receivers taking to the gridiron every passing Sunday. Because of it, online sportsbooks have deemed him the emperor with his 1,400+ receiving yards the highest number to beat in the futures market entering the regular season. With Keke Coutee already injured and it only being a matter of time until Will Fuller once again goes down with a season-ending injury, Hopkins is in line for another huge campaign with Deshaun Watson slinging the pigskin his way!
Total Rushing Yards: 1400.5
The Texans have been a run-first team with head coach Bill O’Brien at the helm. That’s highly evidenced by the fact that the Texans’ pass play percentage ranked No. 25 overall with Watson dropping back just under 56 percent of the time. Only the Patriots, Bears, Saints, Bills, Ravens, Titans and Seahawks passed the ball less. While Houston ran the ball 44 percent of the time, it still did a solid job whenever it took to the air in averaging 236 yards per game and more importantly, 8.2 yards per pass attempt. The latter ranked out as the fifth best mark in the league!
So, whenever Houston did decide to pass the ball, it did so in chunks and big yards through the air are what we’re going to need to overcome Hopkins’ lofty impost this season. Another reason why the Texans passed the ball so much was because the offensive line was horrendous at keeping Watson upright after the former Clemson Tiger was sacked a season-high 62 times. He got hit so much that he was forced to play with an injured sternum a bulk of the season. Though he killed it last year, Hopkins – and Watson for that matter – are going to need the newly retooled offensive line to take dramatic steps in the right direction.
Houston Texans Football Schedule
Week 1: Texans at Saints
Week 2: Jaguars at Texans
Week 3: Texans at Chargers
Week 4: Panthers at Texans
Week 5: Falcons at Texans
Week 6: Texans at Chiefs
Week 7: Texans at Colts
Week 8: Raiders at Texans
Week 9: Texans at Jaguars
Week 10: Bye Week
Week 11: Texans at Ravens
Week 12: Colts at Texans
Week 13: Patriots at Texans
Week 14: Broncos at Texans
Week 15: Texans at Titans
Week 16: Texans at Buccaneers
Week 17: Titans at Texans
While there are some troublesome spots on the schedule, there’s also a number of easier matchups that will go a long way in allowing Hopkins to live up to his WR1 billing for those betting on him having another huge season. The Monday nighter at the Saints to kick off the year is one of his few plus matchups going by last year’s defensive stats, but the next two games against the Jaguars at home and Chargers on the road will be tough. He’ll get more opportunities to take advantage of leaky NFC South secondaries the following two weeks against the Panthers and Falcons before traveling to Arrowhead for a likely shootout with the Chiefs.
After that, the schedule gets noticeably tougher with two games set to go against the hated Colts with the Raiders, Jaguars and Ravens sandwiched in between. The remainder of the schedule has the Patriots, Broncos and Titans on it along with a road game at Tampa Bay. While the best of it looks to be coming early, who knows how good or how bad the defenses will be in the predicted tougher section of the schedule.
While it’s never fun trying to topple the highest total on the board, I simply have no desire to get in the way of Hopkins this season. The dude is in the prime of his career and looks to be getting better with every passing season. Though I’m not high on the Texans as a team, it doesn’t mean they can’t hang some crooked numbers on the board going down in defeat.
Hopkins led me to a second straight fantasy football title in my home league last season, and his effort against the Jets in Week 16 was one of the main reasons why. He proved time and time again that he can still get his regardless of who lines up alongside him. You can double and triple-team him and he’ll still come down with the pigskin. You saw his workout hanging upside down and snaring passes from the Jugs right?
Houston is going to be forced to throw the ball a ton this season and Hopkins stands to benefit from it the most. Hit the over and watch him come out with the most receiving yards of any other player!
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