The Duel

2019 Fantasy Football Breakout Candidates for Upcoming NFL Season

By Braulio Perez
Wild Card Round - San Diego Chargers v Baltimore Ravens
Wild Card Round - San Diego Chargers v Baltimore Ravens / Rob Carr/Getty Images
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While many fantasy football owners are likely focused on the top guys at each position grouping heading into their 2019 drafts, you can't forget about the breakout candidates that can be big-time difference makers this coming season.

If you're lucky and end up landing a diamond in the rough, it could make the difference for you come the fantasy playoffs. With that being said, here's a look at 10 players who could break out during the 2019 NFL season.

10. Derrius Guice, RB, Washington Redskins

Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Last August proved to be devastating for Redskins running back Derrius Guice, who tore his ACL early in training camp. Fast forward to 2019, he's back to full strength and looks ready to officially kickstart his NFL career. The Redskins may have re-signed Adrian Peterson, but you can't ignore the fact he's now 34. Guice has all the potential in the world and will look to showcase it this coming season.

9. Darrell Henderson, RB, Los Angeles Rams

You may not know much about rookie Darrell Henderson now, but you most certainly should. The Rams traded up to take Henderson in the third round in 2019 NFL Draft for a reason. He's a shifty back with blazing speed, and with Todd Gurley's knee causing plenty of concern, Henderson could see plenty of action early in the season to take some pressure off the team's superstar running back. This could be good news for Henderson's fantasy owners as he could break out, if Gurley's knee doesn't hold up.

8. Jordan Howard, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

With the Eagles looking to get back to the Super Bowl, the addition of Jordan Howard at running back could prove to make a big difference. The RB landed with Philly this offseason and will look to carry the load for the team's ground game. Last season, Howard rushed for 935 yards and nine touchdowns, but he's being drafted on average at pick 82. Though Philly has a crowded RB room, Howard could end up being the consistent back this team has been looking for.

7. DK Metcalf, WR, Seattle Seahawks

Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Built like a linebacker, the hype is through the roof for DK Metcalf with the Seattle Seahawks this season. With Doug Baldwin retiring due to injury, the Seahawks are in need of playmakers on offense and Metcalf could fill that role. Though Tyler Lockett will be ready to lead the unit, Metcalf will be asked to step in immediately and be a playmaker as a rookie. He's got the tools to get the job done and break out during his rookie season.

6. Jared Cook, TE, New Orleans Saints

Jared Cook was a startable tight ends in fantasy football last season, and he had Derek Carr throwing him the rock in 2018. Imagine what he'll be able to do now that he's with the Saints catching balls from future Hall of Famer Drew Brees. Cook is coming off a year where he caught 68 balls for 896 yards and six touchdowns. With Brees tossing him the pigskin, a 1,000-yard season most certainly isn't out of the question.

5. Christian Kirk, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Christian Kirk quietly put together a strong year for the Cardinals last season, hauling in 43 balls for 590 yards. With No. 1 pick Kyler Murray now in Arizona, Kirk will have a true playmaker throwing him the ball each week. Look for No. 13 to build on his numbers from last season and make a ton of noise in 2019.

4. Jameis Winston, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cliff McBride/Getty Images

With Ryan Fitzpatrick now in Miami, there's no question who the No. 1 QB for the Bucs is. Jameis Winston unfortunately hasn't lived up to his No. 1 pick hype, but he'll look to silence all of his haters this season. With Bruce Arians now the head coach in Tampa, he may be the guy that changes Winston's career trajectory and finally has a breakout season in 2019.

3. David Njoku, TE, Cleveland Browns

When the Browns went ahead and traded for Odell Beckham Jr. this offseason, Baker Mayfield was probably doing cartwheels in his living room. He's not the only beneficiary, though, as TE David Njoku should thrive as well. With OBJ now in town, it's going to add even more attention to Cleveland's WRs, which could open up the door for Njoku to see his targets and catches climb. With his talent, he should be able to take full advantage of his extra opportunities and end the season as a top-5 TE.

2. Marlon Mack, RB, Indianapolis Colts

Marlon Mack rushed for more than 900 yards last season and people aren't talking about it enough. Oh, and he also had 10 total touchdowns. With Andrew Luck back to 100 percent, the Colts have the makings of a team that can make a deep postseason run in the AFC. Another big year from Mack would obviously make a huge difference for the Colts and his fantasy owners.

1. Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

Harry How/Getty Images

After a seemingly disappointing rookie year, Chargers receiver Mike Williams bounced back in a huge way in his sophomore season. The WR finished 2018 with 43 receptions for 664 yards and 10 touchdowns and has flashed breakout potential at times during his two NFL seasons. There could certainly be big things in store for Williams in 2019.


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