T.J. Hockenson Fantasy Outlook Set to Soar as Top Target in Lacking Lions Offense

T.J. Hockenson fantasy outlook is set to soar as a top target in the Lions' lacking offense.
T.J. Hockenson fantasy outlook is set to soar as a top target in the Lions' lacking offense. / Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

T.J. Hockenson proved he's one of the rising young talents in the league last season. He followed up a solid rookie year in 2019 with career highs across the board in 2020, and he should be even better entering his third season.

Several huge departures from the Detroit Lions this offseason set up Hockenson for a monster year as possibly the main focal point of the offense.

T.J. Hockenson Fantasy Outlook

Hockenson finished 2020 as TE5 in PPR scoring after a breakout campaign. He could be a steal at his current average draft position (ADP) of TE6, according to FantasyPros, when we look back on this season.

Kenny Golladay being limited to just five games helped Hockenson's role expand in the offense. The former No. 8 overall pick set career highs in targets (101), receptions (67), yards (723) and TDs (6) as a featured weapon on a weekly basis.

Now the young tight end is in prime position to best those numbers this year. The Lions have 64.1% of last year's targets up for grabs in 2021 thanks to the departures of Golladay (32 targets), Danny Amendola (69 targets) and Marvin Jones Jr. (team-high 115 targets last season).

Not only did key receiving weapons leave, but Detroit didn't do much to replace them. Top free-agent signings Tyrell Williams and Breshad Perriman aren't true No. 1 wideouts, and fourth-round pick Amon-Ra St. Brown could be a starter right away.

It's clear this team is lacking receiving talent, and Hockenson should be the direct beneficiary. At 6-foot-5, 247 pounds, he provides new quarterback Jared Goff with a huge weapon in the middle of the field to target. Williams and Perriman have also both missed time due to injury in recent seasons, which could present even more opportunities for Hockenson during the year.

The 24-year-old standout may reach top-3 tight end status by the end of the 2021 season. He's a lock for a boatload of targets after a career year, which could vault him into 100-catch, 1,000-yard territory.

Hockenson comes in at TE5 in The Duel's 2021 PPR fantasy football rankings.

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Isaiah De Los Santos is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Isaiah De Los Santos also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username zayyy05328. 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.