After watching quarterback Joe Burrow struggle for every completion in 2020, the Cincinnati Bengals determined that the receiving corps needed an influx of talent. The front office parted ways with longtime wide receiver A.J. Green to move Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd into more featured roles and invested a top-5 draft pick on LSU wideout Ja’Marr Chase, a former teammate of Burrow.
While Burrow will again work behind a porous offensive line, the collection of talented receivers should open up the passing game.
While Chase arrived with considerable hype, he struggled with drops and failed to consistently separate from defenders during training camp and the preseason. That doesn’t mean he won’t contribute meaningfully in 2021, but second-year pro Tee Higgins will serve as Burrow’s No. 1 wideout for the foreseeable future. Boyd will get his touches as well, but some of those will transfer to Chase as the latter acclimates to the NFL.
Fantasy football implications
After a solid rookie season and a similarly impressive training camp, Higgins has high-end WR2 potential in an offense that should lean heavily on the passing game. Chase’s physicality could make him a red-zone threat and could move into the starting discussion for fantasy managers at some point, he lacks the high floor of his teammate. Boyd looks like a streaming option in PPR leagues.