While the Denver Broncos loaded up at wide receiver this offseason, tight end Noah Fant may be the fantasy football breakout star to target for 2020.
Following the 2020 NFL Draft, the Denver Broncos offense is among the hottest topics in the league. Second-year quarterback Drew Lock not only has Courtland Sutton at wide receiver now but incoming rookies Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler as well. But in terms of fantasy football, no one in that trio of pass-catchers is the safest pick to be a breakout star. Tight end Noah Fant, however, is that player.
The No. 20 overall pick of last year’s draft by the Broncos, Fant proved at the NFL Combine that he’s a phenomenal athlete. And he put that on display as a rookie. According to ESPN’s Mike Clay (subscription required), Fant was the TE16 in fantasy football last season. More importantly, however, he had the fifth-best fantasy season by a rookie tight end since 2009.
Furthering that notion, Fant clearly became a bigger option in the Broncos offense as the year progressed. His four best games (all over 50 yards) came after November. With Lock as the starter, the young tight end caught 10 of his 14 targets for 188 yards and a touchdown. That all bodes well for him.
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But what makes Noah Fant a breakout fantasy football candidate for 2020 at tight end is actually the addition of the weapons around him. While it could be difficult to ascertain who will be the best option at wide receiver between Sutton, Jeudy and Hamler, they all help Fant.
As the tight end for the Broncos, the Iowa product should have a ton of space to operate in the middle and intermediate parts of the field. The top three receivers can all be vertical threats that demand attention, which gives Fant more room to work. Not only does that make him a safety valve that could reel in a ton of targets but it puts the youngster in the best position for him as a player.
Because of his speed and agility, Fant is a nightmare for defenders after the catch. He can take a short gain and turn it into a monster play. He did so on a 75-yard touchdown catch as a rookie, which is just a taste of what he can do.
It should be noted that Noah Fant’s breakout campaign does hinge on Lock. While he was 4-1 as a starter at the end of 2019 and showed a ton of promise, he does have only five starts. That’s too small of a sample size to determine whether or not he’s the surefire answer in Denver at quarterback. And if he’s not, then the weapons won’t totally matter.
However, should Lock build off what happened in his rookie season, Fant should be able to do the same. A year ago, we saw Mark Andrews and Darren Waller emerge as fantasy football stars at tight end. With the moves Denver has made this offseason, Fant could be in line for that same type of jump in the 2020 season.