article featured image background
Article preview

Fantasy football bounceback candidates for 2022

NFL Fantasy



Now it’s time to discuss some players who hurt us in 2021. Whether it was a mid-round fantasy football draft selection that flopped or an early-round player who didn’t put your team over the top, every year there’s more than a handful of players who disappoint. With that in mind and with our focus now shifted to what can be done in 2022, let’s discuss some heartbreakers who can make it back into our good graces next year with bounceback seasons. 


Allen Robinson, WR, Free Agent

Allen Robinson’s 2021 season was one to discard and put in the rearview. Robinson struggled all season, dealing with injuries and underperformance. He saw his yards per route run dip from 2.05 to 1.13, and even his slot yards per route run (1.27) looks ugly. He finished with the lowest receiving yardage (410) output for his career for a season in which he played at least eight games. Could Robinson be dust entering his age 29 season? Sure. It’s possible, but it’s also possible that he still has 1-2 productive seasons left in him. As an unrestricted free agent, he now could land with a team with improved quarterback play and return to top 20 fantasy wide receiver status. 

Darren Waller, TE, Las Vegas Raiders

Darren Waller’s 2021 season as the TE7 in fantasy points per game wasn’t what you envisioned when you drafted him aggressively last season. I get it. This doesn’t mean Waller is past his prime or that it’s time to shove him to the scrap heap. Waller still finished 10th in yards per route run (among all tight ends with 15 or more targets) immediately behind Travis Kelce, so the efficiency remains. Entering 2022 fully recovered from his injury and with a new offensive system that should feature him, Waller is a prime bounceback candidate. 


Miles Sanders, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Miles Sanders finishing as the RB41 in fantasy points per game is an eyesore. Sanders wasn’t a top-end draft pick in the first two rounds last year, but even that fantasy output screams 2021 bust. Nagging injuries and touchdown variance tanked Sanders’ season. Sanders receiving 163 touches last year and never getting into the end zone isn’t a testament to his talent, but more of a picture of bad luck. He finished top 10 in breakaway runs, breakaway run rate and true yards per carry (per With the Eagles still possessing a formidable offensive line, and Boston Scott and Jordan Howard possibly heading out the door, Sanders could be in store for a banner 2022. 

Chase Claypool, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

For those like myself who expected Chase Claypool to take another step forward in 2021, you’re probably disappointed. Claypool finished with a season stat line eerily similar to his 2020 season, while also noting that his touchdowns dropped from nine to two. Despite the touchdown regression, his fantasy finishes (WR35, WR36) were also nearly identical. If we believe in talent (we should) and that his rookie season wasn’t smoke and mirrors (it wasn’t), as he was top 25 in yards per route run, EPA, and fantasy points per route run (per, then we should also believe he can still offer another level to his game. With improved quarterback play in 2022, Claypool can resume the moon trajectory promised by his rookie season.

Previous Kup’s Closers: Interactive Chart Next Fantasy Football Rookie QB Tiers 1.0