Tyreek Hill was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL Draft after seeing his draft stock plummet due to past issues with domestic violence.
Hill’s big-play ability was felt immediately on special teams, as he finished his rookie year as PFF’s highest-graded returner on the back of a league-leading 592 punt return yards and three return touchdowns.
The speed demon would become a full-time starter in Year 2 and set a career-high with 133 receiving yards in the season opener. He would go on to finish the season fifth in fantasy points per game (13.4).
But 2018 marked the peak of Hill’s fantasy power, with second-year quarterback and eventual MVP Patrick Mahomes under center for the Kansas City Chiefs. Hill was the highest-scoring wide receiver in fantasy with 1,400-plus receiving yards and 12 touchdowns (17.8 fantasy points per game).
Hill took a slight step back in 2019 as he battled through early-season injuries, but he still finished as a top-10 receiver on a per-game basis.
So it came as no surprise that the following season, Hill was back atop the WR rankings when the dust settled as the No. 2 finisher behind only Davante Adams. His 19 fantasy points per game were higher than his elite 2018 campaign.
Heading into 2021, Hill was a consensus top-three receiver option. But he came in slightly under expectations. The ‘Cheetah’ wrapped a bow on the year as the WR6 overall and in points per game (14.2).
It’s worth noting that Hill posted a career-low in yards after the catch per reception (4.3, 42nd) and yards per route run (2.14, 11th). Hill’s aDOT also dipped dramatically to 10.6, which was the lowest it’s been since his rookie season.
The league’s best deep threat went from second overall in targets of 20-plus air yards to outside the top 10 in that category. 16% of his targets from him were deemed downfield targets, while 84% were under 20 air yards. In 2020, 25% of his targets were considered downfield targets, while 75% were under 20 air yards.
Tyreek Hill was traded to the Miami Dolphins during the 2022 offseason for a boatload of draft picks that included a 2022 first, second, and fourth to go along with two Day 3 picks in 2023.
The blockbuster transaction was just another signal that Miami is going all-in on third-year quarterback Tua Tagovailoa by providing him one of the NFL’s deadliest weapons.
Hill adds the most unique blend of speed and explosiveness to the Dolphins’ offense that should theoretically take Tua’s game to the next level. The team tried to add a vertical speed threat last year to unlock the southpaw’s deep passing in Will Fuller, but that flamed out due to an injury.
As a result, Tagovailoa’s aDOT was 34th in the league (7.4). That number might rise some with Hill in the fold, but it’s not necessarily the expectation. Hill finished seventh in yards after the catch last season, so he’s a candidate to take full advantage of Tagovailoa’s “YAC attack”.
Quick-hitters and yards after the catch will be the focal point of the Dolphins’ offense in 2021 as new head coach Mike McDaniel stems from the 49ers’ YAC-heavy passing offense. 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo ranked 29th in aDOT in 2021 (7.6) after ranking 39th and 35th in the category the two years prior.
😅 haha this offense is going YAC, YAC, and YAC some more. If McDaniel indeed runs the same style offense in SF, not sure why we’d expect anything less than a run-heavy offense that features a QB’s aDOT ranking near dead last.
2021 – 29th
2020 – 39th
2019 – 35th
— Andrew Erickson™ (@AndrewErickson_) May 11, 2022
General Prediction for 2022 and Rest of Career
It’s undeniable that going from Mahomes to Tagovailoa is a massive downgrade for Hill. Tagovailoa has yet to show that he can properly fuel a fantasy WR1, so it’s hard to expect Hill to deliver a top-five season with a lesser passer. Especially with Tagovailoa’s lack of a consistent deep ball, a prominent running game, and Jaylen Waddle also heavily involved in the offensive game plan. Sure, Hill will have his weeks when he is peppered with low-value targets in PPR formats, but the massive downfield touchdowns will happen much less frequently.
Southpaw Jimmy G https://t.co/qTyomNIQUj
— Andrew Erickson™ (@AndrewErickson_) May 11, 2022
With his efficiency marks trending in the wrong direction and massive quarterback downgrade, Hill remains a sell for me across all dynasty formats. Although he is just 28 years old, wide receivers that rely on blazing speed tend to age more poorly than their bigger-bodied route running savant counterparts.
There’s also a scenario where Hill just flat-out gets outproduced by a spry ascending Waddle, which would further knock Hill’s dynasty stock.
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