We’re officially through the first quarter of the NFL season, and there have been quite a few fantasy football disappointments to this point. While not all of the names on this list can be labeled as “busts,” each has let fantasy owners down to this point. So, let’s check out the five biggest disappointments through four games.
Amari Cooper, WR, Oakland Raiders
Through four games, Amari Cooper has 12 catches for 110 yards and one touchdown. In the past two games, he’s tallied 15 total receiving yards on three catches and has been completely non-existent throughout the bulk of games. To go along with that, after seeing 13 targets in Week 1, his targets have dropped to five, five and eight in the next three games.
Cooper was a second-round pick, possibly early third in most fantasy football leagues, yet he’s laid a complete and total egg to this point in the season. At this pace, he’s looking at fewer than 500 receiving yards and four touchdowns. Obviously, he’ll likely get it going, but to this point, it’s been rough.
Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers
Most people had Christian McCaffrey as a third-round draft pick in 12-team leagues, and if you spent your third pick on him, you probably aren’t feeling great right now. The positive about McCaffrey in point per reception (PPR) leagues is that he has 22 catches for 206 yards already.
The problem here is that he’s struggled to do much on the ground. In four games, he’s received 31 carries and has only 89 yards. Even more importantly, after receiving 13 carries in Week 1, he declined down to four in Week 3 and six in Week 4. McCaffrey is certainly a bounce-back candidate in the second half, but I’m not likely to bet on him playing a huge role due to his struggles in the running game.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts
This one can’t be completely put on T.Y. Hilton himself. Most fantasy football players who spent a second (or hopefully third) round draft pick on him, were likely expecting Andrew Luck to already be back. Aside from one monster game in which he caught seven passes for 153 yards and a touchdown, Hilton has been quiet.
Between the three other games, Hilton has 10 catches for 136 yards. So those three games combined don’t match his Week 3 performance against the Cleveland Browns. To put it gently, Luck can’t return to the field soon enough for fantasy football owners.
Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons
Realistically, Julio Jones’ numbers haven’t been terrible. He’s been pretty productive, but this is a guy who was a top-5 fantasy football pick this season. Taking that into account, he’s certainly left fantasy owners wanting much more.
Jones hasn’t scored a single touchdown this season and has topped the 100-yard mark just one time. Obviously, he’s a focal point of the Falcons offense, but heading into the team’s Week 5 bye week, owners are going to be hoping he can come out and torch the Miami Dolphins in Week 6. The biggest concern for fantasy owners with Jones has to be that this production from a first-round pick puts a lot of pressure on the rest of the roster to produce.
Isaiah Crowell, RB, Cleveland Browns
Crowell is in a contract season, so all those fantasy football owners who spent a third or fourth round draft pick on him were expecting big things. Especially coming off his best season as a pro, in which he rushed for 952 yards and seven touchdowns with a 4.8 yard per carry average.
But through four games, Crowell is on pace for the worst season of his career, as he’s averaging 2.9 yards per carry with just 134 yards and no touchdowns. To make matters even worse, he has just five catches for 50 yards as well. Duke Johnson has all but taken over the pass-catching work for the Browns, and Crowell’s running hasn’t even been close to enough to make up for that. It may be safe to call Crowell a fantasy football bust.
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