Earlier this week, Pro Football Focus published an article projecting all the receivers who will have more than 1,000 receiving yards this season. 23 names are on the list. For what feels like the first time in forever, there isn’t a Houston Texan on there after DeAndre Hopkins was traded to the Arizona Cardinals.
For this week’s GroupThink, I asked the masthead if the Texans will have a receiver break 1,000 yards in 2020. These are their answers:
I get this idea of wanting to spread the ball around. I understand the Texans want to zoom zoom like a Mazda commercial this season. This would make it more difficult to have one receiver dominate the box score week in and week out, but all great offenses have a receiver that consistently converts first downs. See Michael Thomas in New Orleans. Or Travis Kelce in Kansas City. Or Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski in New England back in the day. Regardless of the ideals, if the Texans’ plan works, they should have a receiver break 1,000 yards.
I think if Will Fuller is healthy for sixteen games, he will do it. He’s more than just a deep threat. His speed creates easy catches. Comebacks and curls are bunnies for him. Additionally, I don’t buy Brandin Cooks being used on a lot of quick drags, screens, and jet sweeps like he was previously used in Los Angeles because, you know, he’s had five concussions.
Based on this offseason, Bill O’Brien is trying to diversify the offense. Less reliance on one or two pieces to run the entire offense. We all saw that the Texans were a shell of themselves without Fuller, so the goal is to spread the wealth out. The addition of David Johnson should result in an additional 200 receiving as well.
A large portion of this question is predicated on the type of offense the Texans will run. Watson threw for 3,800 yards last season (really sad that I didn’t have to look that up). He threw for 4,100 yards in 2018 (I did have to look that one up). So let’s say DW4 will throw for exactly 4,000 yards in 2020. I could see a healthy Will Fuller crack 1,000 yards, especially as the #1 guy. However, there are a ton of mouths to feed and the idea that Fuller will get 25% of all yards seems daunting.
I always have a receiving targets prediction article in the offseason. I’ll be sure to write one heading into this season.
I’d have to parrot what Kenneth said.
I think this offense is looking to get the ball out to multiple targets since we’re lacking a clear-cut WR1. If it’s a perfect world and there are no injuries to the unit, I’d pick Will Fuller V as my candidate to crack 1,000 yards. As we all know, the world just isn’t that fair.
If football is played this season, I believe we’ll see one or more of our receivers spend time out with an injury. In that scenario, it’s dubious to think that there will be one guy to get the lion’s share of yardage. The Texans are trying to make it harder for me to win in Madden every single year.
I don’t think anyone will this year (if there’s even football in 2020).
First off, odds of a full 16 game schedule at this point are growing slimmer. But let’s roll with the notion the season goes on as scheduled.
The two most likely to do it are Brandin Cooks and Will Fuller V. Cooks has yet to really establish a rhythm in the Texans’ offense, build chemistry with Deshaun Watson, and he’s one concussion away from IR. Fuller, based on his injury history, will never play a full 16 games, making it nearly impossible to break the 1,000 yard mark.
Without a clear cut WR1 and the sheer number of targets Deshaun Watson has this season (Cook, Fuller, Kenny Still, Randall Cobb, Darren Fells, Jordan Akins, Duke Johnson Jr, David Johnson, the ball boy, etc.) and Quincy Avery’s comments about Watson spreading the ball around more than ever, chances are there will be several guys with well over 500 receiving yards but not one guy with over a thousand.
My prediction: Three guys land in the 700-800-ish range (Fuller, Cooks and Stills); three land in the 500-ish range (Cooks, Duke Johnson Jr. and Akins); and the rest contribute another 500 total, putting Deshaun Watson in the over 4,000 yard club without a receiver who goes over 1,000 receiving yards.
For once, I’m going to allow myself to be optimistic. If the Texans new-look offense has a 1,000+ yard receiver in 2020 - if there is a 2020 season - it will be Will Fuller V.
He was not an injury risk in college, but obviously things have not gone well in that department since he turned pro. I have no basis for this belief in Fuller’s health other than hope. He and Deshaun Watson have incredible chemistry, and the speed-injection the Texans have added in Brandin Cooks, plus veteran slot receiver Randall Cobb, should equate to match-up nightmares galore if Bill O’Brien and Tim Kelly do their jobs correctly.
Not to mention there is some solid talent in the TE group, you’ve got the versatile Kenny Stills, and though his prospects look grim after the acquisition of Cobb, I would still love it if O’Brien and Keke Coutee could figure out their issues and get on the same page because that guy could legitimately be a menace.
These are our thoughts. What about you? Do you think a Texan receiver breaks the 1,000 yard mark?