Mark Andrews 2022 Fantasy Football Outlook

Mark Andrews Fantasy Football

Entering 2022, Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews sees his fantasy football value at an all-time high. Among the top three options at the position, it is hard to argue against drafting Andrews early. Otherwise, without Andrews, fantasy football managers will wish they had the stability the Ravens tight end offers.

2022 Fantasy Football Outlook: Mark Andrews

2021 Recap

Mark Andrews is coming off a monster year in 2021. Playing in every game, Andrews caught over 107 passes for 1,361 yards (sixth highest in NFL), and nine touchdowns. By way of standard and PPR fantasy football formats, those numbers were enough to crown Andrews as TE1.

The 2021 season saw Andrews take a massive jump in productivity. Albeit, he was still a starting fantasy football tight end prior, in 2019 and 2020. Nevertheless, it was this past year that put Mark Andrews in the elite tight end discussion.

What makes Andrews’ 2021 breakout even more impressive is the fact that Lamar Jackson had an injury-riddled year. Even with Tyler Huntley under center, Andrews posted career-high marks in being the backup quarterback’s favorite target. This resulted in Andrews’ first First-Team All-Pro selection in four seasons in the NFL

2022 Outlook

There is little to suggest that Andrews’ production will drastically dip in 2022. It is safe to say that Andrews will finish the year as a top-five tight end at the worst. However, fantasy owners should be confident to select Andrews within the top three of his position.

The Good

Andrews ran the most routes of any tight end during the 2021 season, displaying the Ravens’ willingness to dominantly use him as an inside receiver (he ran a route on 84% of offensive dropbacks). This trend should continue into the 2022 season, with Andrews one of the most reliable receivers in the league.

The tight end is expected to retain his role as the team’s primary receiver too. The Ravens’ loss of Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown to the Arizona Cardinals via trade only cements Andrews’ status. As of now, Andrews’ only competition to be the team’s primary receiver is Rashod Bateman, a largely unproven second-year receiver. The rest of the receivers are also largely unproven, though the likes of Tylan Wallace and Devin Duvernay are potential breakout candidates.

While the wide receiver group is among the most unproven in the league, they can still open things up for Andrews. The Ravens are said to be developing their deep-passing game, something that the team has struggled with in recent seasons. Not only are the young receivers developing deeper routes, but Jackson is also developing his deep throwing. If the team is successful in honing their deep attack, Andrews could benefit greatly from defenses being vertically stretched.

The impact of having Jackson back and fully fit cannot be overstated. Jackson is a far more polished passer than Huntley and keeps defenses grounded and honest. With the former MVP back, the Jackson-Andrews connection will be back in full swing, with Andrews being Jackson’s favorite target.

The Potential Concerns

Those who followed the Ravens closely will know that 2021 was an unusual year for the team. The sheer number of serious injuries to starters resulted in the team changing their scheme. Most of this was down to the team relying on backup Huntley for large parts of the season. Huntley’s starting stints saw the team resort to the short passing game, rather than a smashmouth style. That meant that the team passed more than in previous years, evidenced by Andrews’ 153 targets. For perspective, Andrews had 186 total targets in 2019 and 2020 combined. The return of Jackson points to the team returning to their previous smashmouth style. Jackson’s rushing ability will be heavily leaned on, and it will reduce the number of times the Ravens pass the ball.

Alongside this, running back J.K. Dobbins will return for the 2022 season. Dobbins’ return points to the Ravens being able to rely on their running game again. This was something they could not do in 2021 due to season-ending injuries to Dobbins and Gus Edwards.

Dobbins could also provide competition for Andrews as a receiver. The former Ohio State Buckeye developed his pass-catching prowess last off-season. The team also signed Mike Davis and selected Tyler Badie in the 2022 NFL Draft, both of whom are good receiving backs. Fantasy owners should not be too concerned, however, as Jackson rarely throws to the running back position. Andrews will likely be the dominant ‘checkdown’ receiver.

The only other concern surrounding Andrews is the strength of the schedule. FantasyPros list the strength of schedule at #25 for tight ends – meaning Andrews will see some tough matchups in 2022. However, Andrews exceptional production last year proves that he is among the few tight ends that should be considered ‘matchup proof’.

Average Draft Position

Currently, FantasyPros have Andrews as the #21 overall player, making him TE2 behind Travis Kelce. His lowest ranking is TE3, with Darren Waller taking TE2. Therefore, it is safe to say that Andrews should be one of the first tight ends drafted in every fantasy league.

Given that the Ravens will likely pass less this year, it would be no shock to see Andrews’ production fall slightly. His 2021 season is a high bar to set, and fantasy owners should not expect Andrews to top it (though he certainly could). A realistic expectation for Andrews’ season would be 1,100 receiving yards and 10+ touchdowns.

The difference between Kelce and Andrews is truly minimal. However, given that Kelce’s production is expected to improve for 2022, and Andrews’ numbers could regress slightly, Kelce might be the better option as TE1. For fantasy managers to maximize draft value, it would be wise to target Andrews relatively early. Where tight ends start to get drafted strongly depends on the preferences of league members – the best way to snag Andrews could be to wait for Kelce to go first before subsequently drafting Andrews. However, if managers view Andrews as the outright TE1, reaching for him slightly will still pay dividends.

Some managers could also opt to select Dobbins later in the draft due to the expectation that Andrews will lose some snaps to the running game relative to last year.

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