What the 2018 class of rookie wide receivers lacked in top-end talent, it made up for in depth, with 11 different wide receivers scoring at least 96 fantasy points in their maiden year. Next up in our look at the historical comparables for the class is Bills WR Robert Foster.
From Undrafted to Top 10
No team wanted to draft Foster. Thirty-three WRs were selected ahead of him, but when the dust settled, the 24-year old out of Alabama put up more rookie fantasy points than all but nine of them.
- Foster finished fourth in rookie efficiency with an reFPOE of 24.7
- Among all WRs, his efficiency was better than DeSean Jackson, Josh Gordon, and A.J. Green in 2018
- He ranked seventh in rookie receiving yards
Using inputs of target volume, production, efficiency, age, weight, and draft stock, I used the RotoViz Screener to come up with the most similar rookie seasons to Foster’s.
While his efficiency allowed for a decent fantasy season for the Bills rookie, as Foster’s cohorts have shown, sexy efficiency figures aren’t sowing the seeds of future NFL success.
It’s an uninspiring group, but to be fair to Foster, he did put up 12.5 percent more yards than any of these rookie comparables. That made me wonder if it was his undrafted status that was weighing down his overall profile, but even in removing the draft variable altogether, the results are mostly the same — not great.
N+1: What Did They Do?
There’s not much to say about this group. None of them flashed in Year 2, and none would go on to make any real fantasy impact in their careers.
As a sophomore 658 yards on 97 targets would represent the climax of David Nelson’s NFL story; he wouldn’t accumulate that many in the last three years of his career combined.
Same goes for D.J. Hackett, who put up 610 yards on 66 targets but was out of the league two years later.
Hank Baskett accumulated 19.2 percent of his rookie receiving yards on one 89-yard play. It was all downhill from there.
Marc Boerigter went on to a fine career in with the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League.
Malcolm Mitchell caught 70 yards in the Super Bowl as a rookie and would never play another snap in the NFL.
As a football fan, I loved watching Foster’s emergence from complete anonymity. Heck, we didn’t even have him in any of our metrics for the 2018 rookie class, and we like to think we dig pretty deep in the prospect pile.
As a dynasty player, I’m shopping him around for someone with a little more built-in draft stock. Foster is just too replaceable, and based on his historical comps, chances are that he’s at his apex value today.
If you’re looking for more on Foster, Eric Burtzlaff and Nathan Powell talked about Foster’s dynasty prospects near the end of the season.
Check out the rest of the comparables for the top-11 rookie WRs:
11. Michael Gallup