Kyle Yates’ “My Guys” For The 2022 Fantasy Football Season

It would be really easy for me to “plant my flag” as a fantasy football analyst next to the players going off the board in the 1st round of ADP, wouldn’t it? I obviously love Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook, Jonathan Taylor, etc. this year, but that doesn’t exactly help you – the reader – all that much.

You want to know who some of the players are later on in the draft – where things get a lot more murky – that I absolutely love scooping up at their ADP and am looking to have on every roster that I can this season. The players below are ones that I find myself quite higher on than the rest of the industry it seems, which makes them easy selections for “My Guys” here heading into the 2022 NFL season!

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Let’s have a little fun with it this time around though. How about we build out the list as a fantasy football lineup? 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, and 1 TE.

Let’s get to it.

ADP is pulled up from FantasyPros’ latest ADP Consensus.

Kyle Yates’ My Guys

Quarterback: Trey Lance (San Francisco 49ers)
Yates’ Ranking: QB9

It’s only appropriate that I continue to stand by the QB that I had as the 1.01 in Dynasty Superflex rookie drafts last off-season. Lance was my QB1 coming out of the 2021 NFL Draft class – yes, over Trevor Lawrence – because of his ridiculous upside and how it meshes with where the NFL is trending at the QB position. I classified him as a league winner last year because I assumed that the 49ers would want to get their No. 3 overall pick onto the field and get him game reps  – which is what he desperately needs after barely playing over the past couple of years – but they chose to ride with Jimmy Garoppolo for one more season in 2021. Now, welcome to Trey Area. Lance is unquestionably the starter here for the 49ers and, as such, he carries immense upside this season for fantasy football. Is he going to be as crisp and effective of a passer as Josh Allen or Justin Herbert right out of the gate? Absolutely not. He’s going to need some time to adjust to playing at the NFL level, but in the meantime he’s going to provide an incredibly high floor for fantasy football because of his rushing ability. Even in Week 3 of the preseason, we saw a glimpse of what this 49ers offense is going to look like with Lance behind center and it involved getting the athletic QB on the move a lot! If he does grow the way that I think he can throughout the course of the season, we could potentially have a top-3 fantasy QB on our hands and you got him at an incredible discount.

Running Back: Dameon Pierce (Houston Texans)
Yates’ Ranking: RB29

Check the receipts! I have been all in on Pierce since the end of April when we found out he landed in Houston and I was living my best life scooping him up in mock drafts in the 12th or 13th round all off-season. That is no longer going to be the case though as Pierce has been the star of the NFL preseason and he’s coming off of a dominant performance in Week 3 after not even dressing in Week 2. Marlon Mack and Rex Burkhead are still here in town, but they’re going to be complimentary pieces to the young and talented rookie RB. The scoring opportunities for Pierce aren’t going to be plentiful in this Texans offense here in 2022, but the volume is going to be too hard to ignore. Add on to that the talent level and what we’ve seen here from him over the past few weeks and Pierce is set to be a key contributor for fantasy lineups this season. That RB40 ADP that you see above? Get ready for that to takeoff here over the next week or so.

Running Back: AJ Dillon (Green Bay Packers)
Yates’ Ranking: RB18

There are a lot of players that could slide into this second RB spot for the “My Guys Fantasy Lineup”. Joe Mixon, Ezekiel Elliott, and Khalil Herbert are all names that I thought about here that I am seemingly higher on than the rest of the industry, but Dillon gets the nod. The third-year RB out of Boston College is one of my favorite values in fantasy football drafts currently and it’s shocking that his ADP has stayed around this range all off-season. The Green Bay Packers are going to need Dillon this year more than ever before with all of the uncertainty surrounding the WR corps and we could see a ton of 2RB sets with Aaron Jones and Dillon both on the field at the same time. With Jones being moved around the formation as a receiver, Dillon could start to see more of the goal-line work and that has plenty of value here for an offense that still figures to be in the opponent’s red zone with regularity. Add in the fact that he has top-5 upside if Jones were to miss time for any reason and Dillon could absolutely be a league-winner here in 2022.

Wide Receiver: Michael Pittman Jr. (Indianapolis Colts)
Yates’ Ranking: WR11

There’s not a drastic difference between ADP and my ranking here for Pittman, but I believe that I’m now contractually obligated to dub the talented WR as one of “My Guys” for the remainder of his career with how much I’ve hyped him up over the past two seasons. In his rookie year, I was incredibly bullish on Pittman as a deep sleeper but that didn’t necessarily come to fruition. Last year though, I continued to pound the drum for Pittman as a steal at his WR50 overall ADP while others were making claims such as T.Y. Hilton or Parris Campbell were going to outscore him in 2021 from a fantasy perspective. It paid off in a big way last year and Pittman was one of my best calls of the whole season. With that in mind, we’re running it back again for 2022 even though his ADP looks a whole lot different this time around. You’re going to have to pay up in a big way for the third-year wideout, but he could easily be in line for 140 targets this season from Matt Ryan. He’s someone that I’m absolutely willing to pull the trigger on every single time when I’m on the clock and he’s available.

Wide Receiver: Allen Robinson (Los Angeles Rams)
Yates’ Ranking: WR14

If you’ve been listening to my shows or advice at all this off-season, this was probably one of the easiest predictions ever. After an abysmal 2021 campaign with the offensive mastermind Matt Nagy, Robinson had to be looking ahead to free agency and saying that he wasn’t going to play with anything less than a top-5 NFL QB. Well, we know now that that’s exactly what happened as Robinson finds himself as the WR2 in a Matthew Stafford led offense in Los Angeles and that means some very good things are coming his way this season. It’s certainly a bit of a risk to project a monstrous campaign after what we just witnessed last year in Chicago, but there’s little to no target competition here for Robinson in LA outside of Cooper Kupp and this offense is going to continue to put up points week in and week out. 10+ receiving touchdowns is absolutely in the cards here for ARob and we should see Stafford learn to lean on him and trust him very early on. His ADP has been laughably low all season long and he’s going to prove a lot of the doubters wrong this season.

Wide Receiver: Gabriel Davis (Buffalo Bills)
Yates’ Ranking: WR23

There were analysts early on this off-season that were legitimately making the case for Jamison Crowder outperforming Gabe Davis from a fantasy standpoint in 2022 and I logically couldn’t understand how they got to that conclusion. Davis has been a part-time player up to this point of his career, but when he’s been on the field and gotten his shot, he has scored touchdowns like it’s nobody’s business. We saw the ascension happen in front of our eyes last year in the Wildcard Playoff game against Kansas City and there are still people who are refusing to acknowledge that Davis’ time is here and now. Yes, Stefon Diggs is going to see 150+ targets yet again in 2022 and Isaiah McKenzie seems poised to have a good season as well as the starting slot receiver…but Davis is going to be the one that Josh Allen is looking for deep downfield and in the red zone to make plays and that’s what he does best. At this time next year, it wouldn’t shock me if Davis is being drafted as a top-15 WR off the board because of the ridiculous campaign he put up in 2022. Adding him as a WR3 on your roster – which you can do essentially everywhere right now – feels like cheating.

Tight End: Dalton Schultz (Dallas Cowboys)
Yates’ Ranking: TE5

Gotcha! You thought this was going to be Jonnu Smith, didn’t you? While I do like Jonnu again this year as a deep sleeper, he’s still just TE21 for me in my latest Half PPR rankings. However, Schultz has been someone that I’ve found myself drafting everywhere this year if I am going to be taking a TE in the mid rounds. It’s hard to ignore his potential opportunity in this Cowboys offense this season that is desperately going to need some other receiving weapons outside of CeeDee Lamb to step up. I don’t believe that Schultz is a supreme athlete or on par with some of the other options that are in his range of ADP at the TE position from a talent standpoint, but he’s sure-handed and Dak Prescott trusts him immensely as a safety blanket in this scheme. Six or more receptions each and every week is very realistic for the veteran TE this year, especially if we see this defense regress a bit from last year and Prescott is forced to air it out a bit more. With Darren Waller missing most of training camp with a hamstring injury, plus the safety that Schultz seemingly provides this year, it’s an easy decision for me to snag Schultz over Waller in drafts.