Is A.J. Green capable of a renaissance season for the Cincinnati Bengals?
One NFL offense to keep a close eye on this year is the Cincinnati Bengals‘. This will be the second year Zac Taylor will serve as the team’s head coach. No longer is Andy Dalton their starting quarterback. Instead, it is 2019 Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow. Also, we will be getting the return of borderline Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver A.J. Green. How good can he be?
Jason Moore of The Fantasy Footballers used Green in his ‘What if?” scenario on Monday’s episode. While Moore has long been a doubter of Green’s long-term NFL viability at this point, he decided to go positive and see what an absolute best-case scenario could be for Green as a vibrant part of the 2020 Bengals’ passing offense. If you’re Team Green, then you’re going to love this.
Moore looked at Green’s stats from his last two full 16-game NFL seasons of 2015 and 2017 and has projected the Bengals wide receiver could be as good as WR5 in 2020, re-emerging to WR1 status league-wide. While Moore is so down on Green that it’s disrespectful, as he has him actually at WR38, it’s hard to see a player that talented perform that poorly if he has his health.
What if the A.J. Green of old returns to the Cincinnati Bengals in 2020?
If Green plays up to his best level, it would be like the Bengals have their version of Julio Jones headlining their receiving corps again. This would aid all Bengals offensive players as well, especially wide receivers Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins. As for Burrow, he could be as good as QB15 in his rookie season out of LSU. Not too bad for a first-year pro taking over for a lousy 2-14 team.
Ultimately, what should we expect Green to be in 2020 from a fantasy football standpoint? If he ends up being a bona fide WR1, then you have won your fantasy draft going away. If he’s closer to WR38 league-wide, then he’s probably not even worth drafting at this point. However, he’ll end up somewhere between WR5 and WR38. Do we split the difference or does he favor either extreme?
Overall, look for Green to be around WR21, which would make him a low-end WR2 in most leagues, but a high-end WR3 in others. In short, he’s too talented to not be drafted and at least initially played as a WR2 or in the flex as a WR3 right out of the gate in fantasy this season. Not sure if he’ll get to WR1 status, but Green should slot in nicely as a WR2 at the end of the year.