by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Early in the season it appeared that the Steelers’ JuJu Smith-Schuster was emerging as a can’t miss weekly start. Things have changed dramatically in recent weeks, however, and many fantasy owners may not have adjusted. Just take a look at his average targets per game:
- First 4 Games – 12.25 targets/game
- Next 4 Games – 7.25 targets/game
That’s a significant difference and it shouldn’t be a surprise that his production has taken a hit. Over his first four games he totaled 31 receptions, 416 yards and 1 TD. Those are borderline WR1 type numbers, but in the subsequent four games he’s posted 22 receptions, 256 yards and 1 TD.
How do those numbers compare to the rest of the field? Over the past five weeks (due to the bye week this represents Smith-Schuster’s last four games), he has averaged 13.90 points/game for those in PPR formats (1 point/reception). That puts him as the 25th best wide receiver, compared to being the 15th best over the first four weeks (when he was averaging 19.65 points/week).
In other words he’s suddenly become a touchdown/matchup dependent WR2, and a much better fit as a WR3, as opposed to a must start on a weekly basis. Keep that in mind before you utilize him as a “set him and forget him” type wide receiver.
Sources – ESPN, NFL.com, My Fantasy League
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