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Over/Under: Michael Floyd

floyd

Back by popular demand, it’s “Over / Under!” With this series I will highlight a player and determine some projections based on past tendencies and current trends and state whether I think they will go over or under those projections in the upcoming season. The criteria will be different for each player based on position and situation.

We’re going to start this series re-birth with Michael Floyd, wide receiver for the Arizona Cardinals. We will put his line at 70 receptions, 1,100 yards and eight touchdowns.

Coming out of Notre Dame in 2012, Floyd was a hot target in dynasty league drafts. He left storied South Bend owning just about every career receiving record they have, including career receptions, yards, 100-yard games and touchdowns. He was selected 13th overall by the Arizona Cardinals in the NFL Draft, which was a viewed as a great destination because of the presence of Larry Fitzgerald. Floyd had a couple of alcohol related run-ins with the law during his time in college, so being under the wing of Fitzgerald, one of the game’s true professionals, was best case scenario.

According to the archived ADP data provided by MyFantasyLeague.com, Floyd was being selected as the second wide receiver and the overall rookie 1.07 in the summer/fall of 2012. How many GM’s, NFL and fantasy alike, would like a redo of this draft class? Alshon Jeffery isn’t even listed in the top 10 selections here, his ADP was 13th.

floydchart

Floyd’s rookie year was promising considering the quarterback play Arizona had with Kevin Kolb, John Skelton, Ryan Lindley and Brian Hoyer. The team collectively threw for 3,383 yards, or just 187.8 yards per game and 11 total touchdowns. Floyd finished the year with 45 receptions, 562 yards and a pair of touchdowns while splitting time with Andre Roberts.

[inlinead]?In an effort to correct the worst quarterback situation this side of Cleveland, the Cardinals traded for Carson Palmer before the 2013 season. Floyd took a step forward both in role and performance with Palmer at the helm. Palmer doesn’t mind throwing a ball up for his receiver to fight for, which is one of Floyd’s best traits. He would go on to lead the Cardinals with 65 receptions, 1,041 yards and five touchdowns.

Entering last season, Floyd was on just about everyone’s list of probable breakouts. According to Ryan McDowell’s ADP data, available here at DLF, his value peaked with an average draft position at 14th overall in the month of September. It had previously held firm in the mid-20’s.

Even though Floyd led the Cardinals in receiving yards and touchdowns, his 47 receptions, for 841 yards and six touchdowns were considered a disappointment as he finished tied for the WR43 in PPPR leagues. His role in the passing game was also questionable at times with the presence of newcomer John Brown who tied Larry Fitzgerald for the team lead in targets with 103, four more than Floyd. Another punch to the gut for Floyd owners was the fact his best outing of the season came when he lit up the 49ers to the tune of eight receptions for 153 yards and a pair of scores in week 17, when it didn’t matter for the majority of fantasy land.

What it did do was put Floyd owners at an advantageous crossroads. With a strong close to 2014, his value was salvaged and provides an opportunity to sell on a high note. It also provides reassurance for his future. Last year’s quarterback play was nearly as bad as his rookie year. Carson Palmer was in and out of the lineup before he tore his ACL in week 10. Drew Stanton took over but was not good enough to provide a fantasy relevant offense during his eight starts. Although, he looked like Peyton Manning compared to the dumpster fire that was Ryan Lindley. Limping to the finish line, this team went into pure survival mode on the back of an elite defense and a running game going on fumes.

Now entering year four, Floyd will be counted on to make a much bigger impact. The team was able to restructure Larry Fitzgerald’s contract, so he’ll be back, but this team wants Floyd to take the reigns as the go-to receiver. Bruce Arians has already gone on record saying he wants to see more consistency from Floyd, but getting more consistency from the quarterback position would lead to more consistency from all of the team’s wide receivers. I would expect the Cardinals to address the quarterback position in the upcoming draft as well. I also believe this team is building the offensive line the right way and will provide a stronger running game this year. They’ve been linked to acquiring Adrian Peterson to pair with Andre Ellington, but I think it is unlikely. I think the most likely scenario is the team taking advantage of one of the deepest running back draft classes in recent memory to find a thumper to complement Ellington – these additions will all aid in the performance of the passing game.

As far as our betting line goes, I’ll take the OVER. I believe Floyd’s 2014 stats were directly related to the poor quarterback play of the team and not of his ability or efforts. He is one of the league’s best jump ball receivers in the red zone as well, he just needs the opportunity. Even with constant turnover at the quarterback position, he came very close to hitting these projections. He’s an incredibly talented wide receiver who is just 25 years old and entering the prime of his career.

So, I ask you, are you taking the “over or under” on Michael Floyd recording 70 receptions, 1,100 yards and eight touchdowns? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading.

Follow me on Twitter @OlingerIDP.

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Eric Olinger
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19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. fantasyFreak

    April 10, 2015 at 7:08 am

    I’ll take UNDER. Floyd seems like a one trick pony. Runs fly routes all day, has a poor release of the LOS, and can’t seem to run complex routes with any success. John Brown is the receiver I would much rather own, given the price difference. He actually ran some nice routes, and looked superior to Floyd in every way. The only thing Floyd has over him is the size advantage. I don’t see 70 catches or 1100 yards in his future next year. I watched quite a few Cardinals games, and his problem wasn’t just QB play. He played poorly. One of those TD’s against the Niners was a flea flicker, by the way, and he was so wide open your grandmother could have caught it.

  2. TommyL31

    April 10, 2015 at 7:52 am

    As much as it pains me to say so I’ll take the under. While I don’t think he’s a one trick pony by ability I think that’s how he’s being used in the offense with the emergence of John Brown. Thankfully I was able to trade him this offseason for the equivalent of two 2nds and Justin Blackmon. Blackmon may not get reinstated but Floyd likely wouldn’t have started for me so if I’m going to have potential wasting away on my bench anyway I might as well get some picks too while I can still get them.

  3. Mullmania

    April 10, 2015 at 8:30 am

    That line feels about right but I agree several of the points made above. Brown looks like a more well rounded receiver and Fitz is still there. I don’t see him emerging well beyond them into a 1.A situation necessarily.

    I had the choice of selling him or M. Bryant and I kept Bryant FWIW.

  4. David Stevens

    April 10, 2015 at 10:45 am

    There is little chance that it will be over

  5. Eric Olinger

    April 10, 2015 at 11:01 am

    All good points. I think the hardest protection to attain will be the reception total. I’d be shocked if he misses the yardage and touchdown projections.

  6. JohnnyD

    April 10, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    I’ll confidently take the under in every category, with the possible exception of TD’s. Suppose Floyd does have a shot to meet or exceed 8 TD’s. I wouldn’t give John Brown straight up for him right now.

    What do you think Floyd’s value is in draft pick(s) now is, in say a 16 team PPR league?

  7. SJ

    April 10, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    Totally agree that he was on everyones breakout list.. as he was on mine. And never felt so burnt after the horrible (IMO) season he put up. It was looking so promising in preseason and then … clunk.

    So, as nothing has changed really in ARZ this year, I have to side with the UNDER crowd. I wish I could see something happening, but hes not really a guy you peg as in need of improving physically, or even mentally. I honestly think were seeing the peak of his game

  8. JohnnyD

    April 10, 2015 at 7:18 pm

    The other thing about Floyd’s game that gnawed at me all year and even some of last year – is that he doesn’t seem to have it in him to adjust and overcome. Do whatever the game flow needs of him. Someone posted earlier that he runs go routes great all day long, but not much else.

    All the great ones have a full bag of tools that they deploy to get make their imprint (and usually productivity) on the game. Floyd seems to be lacking that from my (biased) perspective. Maybe he can develop it…

    BTW – Corollary of Floyd’s down times, why are expectations for Jon Brown so low? Yeah Fitzy’s back, but Brown is clearly the future in Arizona and is already a much better WR than Floyd, even if he doesn’t have his size.

    • fantasyFreak

      April 10, 2015 at 7:32 pm

      Well Johnny, you were referring to my earlier comments. I agree with everything you just wrote. Floyd makes most of his catches in one of 2 ways, and they are usually both off the same route. The “go”. He either gets past the guy and catches it, or leaps over good coverage to get it. His doesn’t have very good change of direction ability, and I think that’s why his route tree is very basic. Look at a guy with the same type of size in Dez Bryant, and he can run so many different routes comparatively. What we are talking about though, is a different tier of receiver. Floyd doesn’t have the drive that Dez does, either. You talk about adjusting, but Floyd seems so passive in that regard. He seems lethargic and disinterested when competition is heightened against him. How many catches did he have in the 2 games against Seattle this year? 2 catches for 41 yards………in 2 games. That’s right. That was his big game against the Hawks this year. 2 catches for 41 yards. He got shut out the other game. He was invisible. Now some may say “but the QB!” Well, John Brown managed 6 catches for 115 yards against the Hawks, as a rookie. My point is on this, against the Rams and Hawks and hers(who have taken a step backwards defensively, but nonetheless) he has some tough divisional games which he seems unprepared and motivated to compete in, lowering the chances of any fantasy relevance in direct correlation to his ADP.

      • fantasyFreak

        April 10, 2015 at 7:34 pm

        hers should read 9ers, sorry about the few typo’s. Damn auto correct!

  9. leehwgoC

    April 10, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Going with the under. John Brown is an ascendent talent himself, and I suspect Arians already likes him more than Floyd. His arrival into the equation caps Floyd’s statistical ceiling now.

  10. InvestLikeKB

    April 10, 2015 at 10:32 pm

    I like these projections for Floyd. If Palmer stays healthy the full season give me the over. If he gets injured give me the under but not too far away. I like Brown and very interested to see how he responds with defenses adjusting to him in year two. I think we’ve seen Floyd’s floor and that was last year when “frustration went into his play sometimes”-Arians. Which is why I’d easily accept Floyd straight up for Brown. Both are 25 yr old WRs with Floyd only 4 months older than Brown, but with two more years in the league. He’s already proven he can hit the 1000 yardage mark. He was 160ish yrds away from breaking that again last yr. A healthy Palmer last yr and he does just that. Add on the fact that he’s potentially an UFA after this yr depending on if the Cards pick up his option and he’s a buy low in my book right now. I’m with Eric on this, with a healthy Palmer, I’d be shocked if he doesn’t hit at least the yardage and TD numbers.

  11. Jbauman32

    April 11, 2015 at 7:56 am

    I think the line is right on assuming Palmer stays healthy. The critisism that all of Floyds receptions are on “go” routes is irrelevant to me. Thats the Ariens offense. He has the size and proven ability. Cant fault him for a down year with bums at QB. i see 2015 playing out as Floyd and Brown as the top 2 Cards recievers with Fitz’s role deminishing further.

  12. Fantasy stud

    April 11, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    Regardless of the fact that he lost a 4500 passer for a carousel of inenpts barely capable of half that. Last year was the first time he drew #1 coverage away from Fitz. Therefor comparing John brown’s production going vs Nickle guys to Floyd vs #1 corners is stupid. He will adjust and break 1k yards easily this year.

    • leehwgoc

      April 11, 2015 at 8:54 pm

      Bud, Floyd definitely wasn’t drawing ‘#1 coverage’ for very long last year. Maybe the first three weeks or so. The rest of the season? No way.

      Btw, Palmer threw for 4274 yards, not 4500 (he’s literally NEVER thrown for that much), and that was two years ago. Now he’s 35 and that much further along in his age decline. You need to reign in your expectations.

      And really, that’s the issue: there’s only going to be so many receiving yards to go around. Arians will help, but the bottom-line is that Palmer is neither elite, nor young. Floyd barely reached a thousand yards in 2013 when Fitz was the only other guy that really took targets away from him, and Palmer threw for the most yards that he ever has in his career.

      Now here in 2015 there’s a third rising talent at receiver that will siphon targets and yards, plus a new emphasis on RB targets that wasn’t a factor in 2013, and Palmer will probably finish in the 3800-4000 yard range considering his age and history. So this projection for Floyd will likely require him to account for more than a fourth of Palmer’s total passing-yardage. This boils down to meaning that the projection here is *very* optimistic for Floyd.

    • leehwgoc

      April 11, 2015 at 8:56 pm

      Oh, and Brown was lining up on the outside very often last year, btw. Fitz spent more time in the slot than he did.

  13. GunLaker

    April 12, 2015 at 5:21 am

    I’m taking the under as well. I believe Floyd has the talent, but with your best QB coming back from a torn ACL, I’m not buying it. I expect Palmer to struggle this year being as old as he is, and the fact that lower leg injuries can vastly effect foot mechanics, arm strength, pocket mobility and delivery. Granted ACL tears aren’t what they used to be, but I’m not a believer that Palmer comes back and plays at the top of his game to help get Floyd “the over”.

  14. Not sure

    April 12, 2015 at 7:21 pm

    Under. I just traded him straight up for Mark Ingram. Even his best season wasn’t all that impressive.

  15. go

    October 31, 2015 at 3:58 am

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