Antonio Brown has been a slam dunk top three pick in fantasy football for the past four years but he may finally be entering the category of being slightly overrated. Of course, if Brown slips to even 6 or 7 in your draft, scoop him up immediately. But he is no longer a sure bet to be an elite fantasy football talent capable of winning your league by himself. Here is a look at why you should avoid Antonio Brown Rob Gronkowski Fantasy football with big drop offs expected.
Brown is now 30-years-old and has seen his catch totals dip the past three years. He also saw his season touchdown totals dip to under 10 for the first time since 2013 last season. In 2014 Brown had 13 touchdown catches, in 2015 he had 10, in 2016 he had 12 and this past season that number fell to nine. His yardage was up from 2016, however, as he racked up 1,533.
Catch-wise, Brown peaked in 2015 with 136 catches but that total dipped to 106 in 2016 and and to 101 last season. It was the lowest number of catches Brown had in a season since 2012.
Some of this drop-off has been due to injury, which is very concerning considering how quickly wide receivers age. Former fantasy stud Eric Decker, who retired on Sunday, turned 31 this past March. Brown will turn 31 next summer.
Many fantasy football owners who went deep in the playoffs last year will also recall Brown’s inopportune injury in Week 15 against New England. Brown left the game with a calf injury and submarined many owners’ semi-final.
It’s also worth noting that Brown has been nursing a quad injury this preseason and has not played yet in the exhibition season.
With all wide receivers in fantasy football, it’s also important to look at the man who is throwing him the ball. Ben Roethlisberger is no spring chicken himself at 36-years-old and isn’t exactly thriving in the later stages of his career like a Tom Brady. Roethlisberger had his worst passer rating since 2013 last year. Below is more info on why to avoid Antonio Brown Rob Gronkowski Fantasy football and more.
Avoid Antonio Brown Rob Gronkowski Fantasy football: Down years ahead
Last year was the first year Rob Gronkowski had an incentive-laden contract and it paid off for fantasy football owners as Gronk pulled in 69 catches for 1,084 yards and eight touchdowns. But Gronkowski is disgruntled at his pay in New England as the Pats won’t pony up to pay him “receiver money,” despite his gaudy numbers produced at the tight end position.
There is enough tension in Foxboro where if Gronk is even “nicked up,” he could wind up sitting. Several years back Gronkowski and his family played hardball with the Pats and thought the team was rushing him back from injury too soon. That, combined with the fact that the Patriots treat him with kid gloves anyway could cause him to miss several games this season – particularly toward the end of the season when New England usually has the division title wrapped up.
Also worth looking at is that Gronkowski is not the touchdown machine he was earlier in his career. In his first six years in the NFL he registered over 10 touchdowns in a season five times. Two years ago he had just three TDs in eight games played and last year he totaled eight TDs in 14 games played.
Much-maligned fantasy tight end Jimmy Graham had more TDs last year, with 10. Zach Ertz, Travis Kelce and Kyle Rudolph each had eight like Gronkowski. In other words, the drop-off from Gronkowski to the No. 2 fantasy tight end is not nearly as significant as it used to be. Above is information on why to avoid Antonio Brown Rob Gronkowski Fantasy football with down years ahead.