The San Francisco 49ers will be the protagonist of today’s article. Last season, the 49ers showed signs of a bright future even without their QB, Jimmy Garoppolo going down with an ACL tear. Without Garoppolo, the 49ers still ranked middle of the pact at 16th in 2018, with 5,769 yards. They ranked slightly lower in their point totals at 21st in the league with 342 total points good for 21.4 points per game. The 49ers defense faired slightly better than their offense as they ranked 13th, however; that didn’t display itself in the amount of points that they allowed, as they ranked 28th, allowing 27.2 points per game. This is favorable in a fantasy perspective because allowing more points on defense causes the offense to press more and try to put up more points. Overall the 49ers were a sub-par team that struggled more without their starting QB. In 2019, expect the 49ers to improve pretty dramatically in the NFL, and for many of their players to perform well in fantasy.
Now, I will get into the 49ers QB, Jimmy Garoppolo, RBs, Jerrick Mckinnon and Matt Brieda, WRs, Dante Pettis and Marquise Goodwin, and TE, George Kittle.
Obviously everyone knows Garoppolo is a good QB. In 2018, his season ended after just 3 games (2 games and about 3 quarters) after he was injured against the Chiefs trying to scramble for a 1st down. Garoppolo in those games averaged around around 16 points per game not great but also not bad. Over the entire season that would have but him 256 points which would have ranked him as the 15th best fantasy QB for the season. I would expect Garoppolo to be even better this season as he has some legitmate weapons around him. I currently have Garoppolo as a top 10 fantasy QB for next season around the 7th-8th spot. Expect around 4,200-4,500 yards and 30 TDs next season.
The RB situation in San Francisco is going to be very difficult to predict because both Mckinnon and Bridea are good RBs. However, I expect Mckinnon to take a majority of the carries and will likely dominate the passing down role. Therefore, I’m expecting Mckinnon to be the main back and will be ranking him as such. I’d expect Mckinnon to not get a ton of carries as he’s a smaller shiftier back similar to a Phillip Lindsay. I’d expect Mckinnon to get around 200 carries for around 900-1,000 yards. Mckinnon’s value will be in his pass catching as I’d expect around 70-80 catches for 600-800 yards for a total of around 8-10 TDs. Although I’m high on Mckinnon I currently don’t have him ranked as a top 24 RB simply because I haven’t seen the split between him and Bridea. During the preseason I will have my final rankings for the pre-draft where Mckinnon will likely be put in there if he gets more than 75% of the snaps.
If you just read what I wrote about Mckinnon you will know that I’m not high on Brieda and therefore his portion of this article will be brief with just my expectations. For Brieda, I can see him getting around 100-150 carries for 400-750 yards and will add around 20-30 catches for 200-300 yards and will have 3-5 TDs. If Brieda isn’t the main back or at least splitting touches he will not be viable for fantasy in 2019. Again, this will change as we are close to the preseason.
I am a huge fan of Pettis for fantasy in 2019. In 2018, he was hurt for some of the season and didn’t see much action in the early half of the season. However, after the bye in week 11, Pettis saw 31 targets in 5 games and caught 20 of those passes for 359 yards and 4 TDs. In those 5 games, only one of those teams, the Bucs, were a poor defense. Therefore, you can see why I think Pettis has the ability to be a huge steal in fantasy for 2019. I’d expect Pettis to see around 120 targets and catch 75-80 passes for around 1,000-1,200 yards and 10-12 TDs. Pettis has the ability to be Garoppolo #1 WR and I expect him to become that.
Goodwin is a speedy WR who struggled tremendously last season without Garoppolo. However, I am predicting somewhat of a comeback for 2019. Goodwin is going to be the 3rd or 4th target in this stacked offense next season. Therefore, I would expect him to not see a ton of targets, but his big play ability makes him somewhat viable in fantasy. I expect Goodwin to see around 60-80 targets and catch around 40-50 passes for around 700-800 yards and 4-5 TDs. He will be a late round flyer in fantasy who has the ability to be a week winning player, however that will be hard to predict and very risky.