Kendall Hinton, starting quarterback. No, that is not a typo. The Denver Broncos are in quarterback hell, as all four of their typical passers have either tested positive for COVID-19 or been in close contact with someone who did. After early reports that Royce Freeman would be the emergency quarterback, Benjamin Albright reported that practice squad wide receiver Kendall Hilton will handle starting duties.
Hinton is available in literally every league and still has wide receiver eligibility. The volume alone makes him an interesting play for the desperate, but what can fantasy owners expect from the unknown passer?
Kendall Hinton, Starting Quarterback: Fantasy Football Outlook
While he signed with the Denver Broncos as a wide receiver, Kendall Hinton spent the vast majority of his high school and collegiate career as a quarterback. During his first four collegiate seasons, Hinton completed 53.0% of his passes for 1,504 yards, eight touchdowns, and seven interceptions. The advanced numbers weren’t much better, as he AY/A sits at an underwhelming 5.4. Considering the fact he never won the full-time starting job and had to transition to wide receiver, it’s safe to say he wasn’t very good, even at that level.
However, Hinton managed to show some ability as a runner. During his four years playing quarterback, Hinton recorded 187 rushing attempts for 872 yards and 12 touchdowns, good for 4.7 yards-per-carry. While this obviously didn’t set the world on fire, watching the tape shows that he is a decent athlete.
Truthfully, Hinton looks a little something like a considerably less athletic Tim Tebow. Like Tebow, Hinton’s accuracy leaves a lot to be desired, but he can operate a read-option offense and make plays when the rushing lane is available. While he’s obviously not the same type of athlete, he does possess enough raw athleticism to run a gimmick offense.
Volume is important in fantasy football, and Hinton is going to have a lot of that. However, you still need to have some efficiency. Nobody expects Hinton to set the world on fire, but can avoid being an active liability?
New Orleans Saints Matchup
The New Orleans Saints have one of the best defenses in the league and are going to do everything in their power to stop the rushing attack. This means Hinton is going to be staring down stacked boxes on just about every snap, as the Saints dare the rookie to win with his arm.
Based on his college tape, it’s safe to say that Hinton cannot consistently win by throwing the ball. However, the silver lining is that this game could get out of hand rather quickly. Once it does, the Saints will probably play a more relaxed defense, which means more running lanes and easier completions. Garbage time stats count just as much as regular stats, after all.
If Hinton only had quarterback eligibility, you should avoid him like the plague. However, since he’s listed as a wide receiver, he could be a serviceable flex play. Hinton is going to touch the ball on every play, and that volume alone makes him an interesting flex. However, his lack of talent combined with New Orleans’ strong defense puts a serious cap on his ceiling. Chances are, he’ll finish the week in the WR20-30 range.
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