It’s easy to think Amon-Ra St. Brown will fall well short of his rookie season in 2022, but his fantasy outlook/stock is more stable than you might think.
From Week 13 on last season, Detroit Lions wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown had 51 catches for 560 yards and five touchdowns with double-digit targets in all six games (61 total targets). Any way you slice that season-closing stretch, the fourth-round rookie was a league-winner in fantasy football leagues.
Purely based on the returns to health of running back D’Andre Swift and tight end T.J. Hockenson next season, who both missed big chunks of that late-season stretch, St. Brown’s fantasy stock for 2022 was in decline. An overall target share close to 33 percent from Week 12 on and (h/t to Jack Camenzind of Fantasy Data) a 47.8 target share among Lions’ wide receivers from Week 13 on, was never going to be sustainable. Then the Lions signed DJ Chark in free agency.
Amon-Ra St. Brown’s fantasy stock will not go in the tank
With time and space to allow the overreaction to diminish, St. Brown’s fantasy stock, for 2022 or beyond if dynasty leagues are your thing, is not in fact going to go in the tank. Pro Football Focus analyst Dwain McFarland has St. Brown at WR19 in updated 2022 rankings, with rookies on the list without landing spots, and as the fourth-ranked second-year wide receiver (behind Ja’Marr Chase, Jaylen Waddle and Elijah Moore).
PFF’s Ian Hartitz has St. Brown at WR22 (full PPR scoring) in his new 2022 rankings.
"Amon-Ra St. Brown was one of the bigger winners from free agency after the Lions decided to bring back Kalif Raymond and Josh Reynolds while only signing D.J. Chark. Yes, Brown’s obscene stretch run was fueled by injuries to T.J. Hockenson and D’Andre Swift. Also yes, he continues to profile as the No. 1 pass-game option for ever-conservative Jared Goff. Historically rookie wide receivers that ball out in a similar manner as St. Brown don’t turn back into a pumpkin at midnight."
There is certainly a line where St. Brown will no longer be ideal value in fantasy drafts this year. That cut-off point for me is something like WR20, or mid-fourth round, in a 12-team league.
An early draft pick by the Lions at wide receiver will probably bring another drop in St. Brown’s fantasy ranking. But the market corrected from a little over a month ago, from WR37 in full PPR then to WR25 now (via Fantasy Pros). If the same happens late next month or into early May, there will be time to ride out the dip and the correction before fantasy draft season really gets going.