Earlier this month we opined that Atlanta Falcons rookie wide receiver Drake London may be a little low on Pro Football Focus’ Top 150 Fantasy Football Player Rankings.
Seems at least one of their writers agreed with us, because London has moved up from No. 72 on the list published by PFF’s Dwain McFarland to No. 63 on the most recent list published by PFF’s Ian Hartitz.
London is ranked WR29 by Hartitz, when he came in at No. 39 by McFarland.
The Falcons also placed Kyle Pitts (No. 28, TE3), Cordarrelle Patterson (No. 74, RB23) and Tyler Allgeier (No. 150, RB51) on the most recent list by PFF. The difference for Pitts was negligible with Pitts being listed as the No. 3 tight end on both and just five spots lower to No. 33 by McFarland.
Different analysts, even within the same company, are expected to have different opinions on players, but we’re more likely to side with Hartitz’ more generous ranking of London.
With London, it’s about opportunity.
London is going to walk into the starting lineup in Atlanta as the Falcons top wide receiver. He may be the second option behind Pitts, but he’s WR1 for this team.
With a 17 game season, he only needs to average 59 yards per game to have a 1,000 yard season and a touchdown every three games to hit six on the year.
1,000 yards and six touchdowns are the numbers Hollywood Brown posted for the Baltimore Ravens in 2021 making him roughly WR21 in most leagues.
The New Orleans Saints had the worst passing attack in the NFL last season, and they still threw for over 3,400 yards. Matt Ryan and the Falcons threw for just under 4,000 in 2021. The Falcons could take a big step backwards in the passing game under Marcus Mariota or Desmond Ridder and still throw for 3,500 yards.
It’s not out out of the question that Pitts and London could both crack the 1,000 yard mark.
Hartitz lists Patterson as one of the players he’s higher on than most. Patterson was a revelation with the Falcons last year, but most analysts are hedging their bets that his 2021 breakout season was an anomaly for the then 30-year old mostly special teams standout.
Instead of hedging, Hartitz is willing to double down.
“Age concerns for the position are relevant, although Patterson has far less wear and tear than your typical 31-year-old NFL veteran,” wrote Hartitz. “Consider that Jonathan Taylor (640) already has 52 more career regular-season offensive touches than Patterson (588).”
“The Falcons felt good enough about Patterson to give him the team’s 12th-highest contract value. While Atlanta is able to move on after 2022 without too much trouble if it desires, Patterson projects as a fantasy-friendly starting running back with one of the position’s better target floors.”
There are three main offensive weapons for the Falcons… Pitts, London, and Patterson, but most fantasy analysts are betting rookie running back Tyler Allgeier is the team’s next running back.
The Falcons drafted Allgeier in the fifth round with the No. 151 pick overall. Allgeier is outstanding after contact and ran for a whopping 1,600 yards and 23 touchdowns in his final season with the BYU Cougars.
The lack of options at receiver and running back may not be the best scenario for the Atlanta Falcons in 2022, but they could be good options for fantasy football players. Instead of spreading the ball around, the Falcons primary weapons should be engaged week in and week out.