Update August 24: Samuel is dealing with a tight hamstring. That’s worth monitoring just in case it lingers, but there hasn’t been any update about whether Samuel or Anderson has the edge in the battle for the WR2 spot.
In this series we will look at the most important fantasy football position battles for each NFL team. Opportunity is king in fantasy, as you can’t produce fantasy statistics without getting on the field. So, the first step when looking for value plays is to project, correctly, which players will win training camp battles.
The Carolina Panthers have undergone some major roster changes since last season. Cam Newton has been released, Luke Kuechly retired, and Teddy Bridgewater has replaced Kyle Allen as the starting quarterback. Carolina focused on developing its defense in the 2020 NFL Draft, but it also added some offensive talent to help its new signal caller.
Greg Olsen has departed to join the Seattle Seahawks, but former Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson has joined a receiving corps that will likely be led by D.J. Moore. A new pecking order needs to be established in the receiving corps, and only one wideout can be the number one option. Curtis Samuel and Anderson are the frontrunners to become Bridgewater’s WR2.
Both Samuel and Anderson have an abundance of speed, but neither player has had much consistency at quarterback. They each fell somewhere between 30th at 40th in standard and PPR fantasy football leagues as second options last year. Anderson has flashed a higher ceiling though and cracked the top 20 in standard and PPR leagues in 2017, when he tallied 63 receptions for 941 yards and seven scores. Curtis is only entering his third pro season, but could unlock more potential in due time.
Anderson’s 6’3” frame and top-notch straight line speed gives Carolina a much-needed deep threat. He’s getting paid $20 million over two years for a reason, so seeing him as the number two receiver out wide shouldn’t be a surprise. Curtis’ versatility and agility could lead to continued use in the slot and as a gadget player.