5 Fantasy Football Busts to Avoid in 2022 Drafts
A lot of people have been under the assumption that players in the first couple of rounds in fantasy football drafts are incapable of being a bust if they stay healthy. However, a bust is simply someone who underperforms their average draft position (ADP). That means every single player is at risk here.
For example, all three of the top players in terms of ADP last season were running backs (Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook, Alvin Kamara). None of them even finished as a top-12 back, though. With that in mind, here's a look at five fantasy football busts to avoid in 2022 drafts.
2022 Fantasy Football Busts
1. D'Andre Swift, Detroit Lions
The first few rounds of fantasy football drafts are all about grabbing studs capable of putting up one big performance after another. That's what makes it surprising to hear D'Andre Swift's name mentioned in second round conversations. Swift has missed at least three games and failed to finish with more than 617 yards on the ground in each of his first two NFL seasons. His ability to leak out as a receiver (135 career targets) is making fantasy managers overlook his disappointing rushing efforts. The 23-year-old averaged only 1.5 yards after contact as a ball-carrier and finished with less than 50 yards on the ground in 10 of his 13 games in 2021. Seeing him drafted over players like Nick Chubb and Alvin Kamara makes no sense.
2. Tyreek Hill, Miami Dolphins
Fantasy managers have to remember that Tyreek Hill is no longer catching passes from Patrick Mahomes in one of the NFL's best offenses. An offseason trade pairs him with Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins, instead. Tagovailoa has shown improvement in the NFL, but his playmaking abilities and arm strength pale in comparison to Mahomes. This is a quarterback that averages only 9.9 yards per completion in his career. Keep in mind the Dolphins also welcome back two players that garnered over 100 targets in 2021 (Jaylen Waddle & Mike Gesicki). Head coach Mike McDaniel comes from an offensive background with schemes that favor spreading the ball around, too. When taking all of that into account, a WR2/3 finish seems much more likely than a high-end WR1 finish does.
3. Saquon Barkley, New York Giants
Injuries have killed any chances Saquon Barkley has had at being a reliable fantasy football running back over the last two seasons. The former Penn State standout has missed 18 games during that span, yet is still connected to an ADP in the late second round. Barkley also failed to post double-digit PPR fantasy points in seven of his 13 games last year and scored a measly four touchdowns. Reports out of training camp say Barkley has looked explosive and capable of returning to his 2019 form (2,028 yards from scrimmage). That would be exciting if he wasn't stuck on a New York Giants offense that ranked second-to-last in the NFL in yards (287.3) and points (15.2) per game in 2021. Avoid drafting Barkley at all costs.
4. Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons
There's no denying that Kyle Pitts showcased why the Falcons used the No. 4 overall pick on him in 2021. The dynamic tight end posted 1,026 yards on 68 receptions (110 targets). Hidden in his dominance was a lack of red zone efficiency and a lack of competition for targets, though. Pitts only scored one touchdown last season with a veteran quarterback in Matt Ryan throwing his way. An obvious downgrade to the mobile Marcus Mariota isn't going to help him increase that mark. Pitts was also the clear-cut No. 1 target in Atlanta's passing attack. That can no longer be said with 2022 first-round pick Drake London in the mix. Pitts' ADP slates him as the TE3, but his floor is that of a finish outside the top five.
5. Cam Akers, Los Angeles Rams
Cam Akers has the best chance to outperform his ADP out of anyone on this list. He also has a chance to finish lower at his position than anyone else on this list. That is because fantasy managers have no idea what to expect from him. The third-year pro dominated the Rams' backfield in terms of snaps and touches during their run to the Super Bowl, but averaged only 2.6 yard per carry (67 rushes, 172 yards). First-team reps have been split between Akers and Darrell Henderson during training camp and the Rams used a fifth-round draft pick to bring in RB Kyren Williams. None of that bodes well for Akers' chances of being a workhorse back. He's better off staying on the board past the third round.
Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.