Long absences leave sour tastes in fantasy owners’ mouths, especially when that absence is followed by ACL reconstruction surgery; as is the case with Reggie Wayne. After a Week 7 season ending injury, Wayne left fantasy GMs scrambling for a replacement. In his absence, T.Y. Hilton flourished and people are buying him higher than they did with the aging Indianapolis Colts WR. In turn, this has lessened Wayne’s cost in drafts, but maybe for good reason.
Even though Wayne has not participated in OTAs, Andrew Luck has gone on record to say that the private workouts he’s seen of his wide receiver, “He’s a freak.” Certainly there’s some bias here, but it’s comforting to know Wayne is working out just as hard as if he were with his teammates at camp.
In his seven games last season with Luck, both Wayne’s success and catch rate increased from his numbers during Luck’s rookie season. Luck has been proving to be more successful: improving in his proficiency and overall output last season. This should bode well for Wayne.
Even though he’s 35-years-old, Wayne has increased in his yards per reception over the last few seasons.
He’s not been a very dominant touchdown target. He was only on pace for five touchdowns last season, and he only reeled in a collective nine touchdowns in the preceding touchdowns.
Wayne’s injury is the elephant in the room. His absence last season has allowed Luck and Hilton’s connection to flourish.
Even though Wayne has shown improvement, his age can’t go without question. There comes a point in a player’s career that he can’t produce as he did in years past. Maybe this isn’t the season, but there should be some trepidation with his age.
I really like how well Wayne and Luck have connected over the past two seasons. I’m not even concerned about how well Wayne has recovered from his surgery. But I am worried that Luck has become more reliant on the rising star in Hilton. Wayne certainly won’t go unnoticed by Luck, but with his age and inability to find the end zone consistently make me a little concerned about drafting him – although, the cost isn’t too much.
Auction Value: $2
Projected Round: 6 (12 team league)
Bye Week: 10