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Countdown to 2021 fantasy football drafts: Mike Evans No. 36

Mike Evans comes in at 36 in our fantasy football rankings countdown to the 2021 NFL season.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) runs the ball during the second quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium. Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Evans has gone for over 1,000 receiving yards in every season he’s been in the league. He will go for his eighth 1,000 yard season in 2021 along with back-to-back championship rings. With the Buccaneers set for a similar run this season, Evans should be in line for similar numbers if he can remain healthy.

To commemorate the 2021 NFL season, we’ll be counting down the 75 best fantasy football players in the league. Picking a Top 75 is subjective, especially when you are projecting a whole season of accumulated fantasy points, but that’s part of the fun. We’ll assume what I see as an average league, which is 12 teams, .5 PPR scoring and a roster of 1QB, 2RB, 3WR, 1TE, & 1RB/WR/TE. Kickers and defenses need not apply.

Change is the nature of the NFL beast, so trades and injuries will likely impact this list as we go along, but hey, this isn’t rocket science. We’re here to have a little fun and build up some much needed anticipation for a league cast in the shadow by baseball, soccer, hockey, etc. Sarcasm aside, the NFL is addictive and we’re here to give your daily fix as we close in on the season.

The official fantasy football drafting tiers can be found here.

No. 36, Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, WR

Evans’ consistency keeps him as one of the best fantasy receivers in the league. Last season his volume numbers went down, but with Tom Brady at the helm he had his most touchdown receptions of his career with 13. We should expect another strong scoring season out of Evans, but touchdowns are always the toughest stat to predict.

Competition for touches

Chris Godwin is Evans’ biggest competition for targets, as they averaged around seven targets per game each last season. We should expect a similar breakdown in work this season as well.

Team offensive expectations

The Bucs had a good offense all season with the addition of Brady, but it went into hyperdrive in the last quarter of the year and onto the Super Bowl win. Expectations are for more of the same, but with more upside in their second season with Brady at the helm.

What’s his upside?

Evans and the whole Bucs offense should be better in year two of Brady behind center. Brady and company didn’t have a normal offseason with COVID-19 disruptions, while Brady had an injured knee all year. The hope is that the passing offense will look more like it did in the latter portion of last year for the whole season this year. That would give Evans another shot at high touchdown numbers and an uptick in receptions and yards.

What’s his downside?

Evans doesn’t have much downside this season. His consistently high floor keeps him from hurting your fantasy team. Injury to Brady or himself are really the only variables which would make him a bad pick this season.

Projection

80 receptions, 120 targets, 1150 yards, 12 touchdowns