5 Reasons to Draft Titus Young in Your Fantasy Football League
He's no Calvin Johnson.
Then again, who is?
Slippery second-year receiver Titus Young is the ideal slot complement to the otherworldly talent on the outside and should be an integral facet in one of the most dangerous offenses in the NFL this season.
Johnson will be picked in the first or second round of most fantasy football drafts, but Young is one of many Detroit Lions who should be on everyone's fantasy radar in 2012.
Here are five reasons to get him on your roster.
He Plays Within the Detroit Lions Offense
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First and foremost, the fact that Young's playing within the Detroit Lions offense considerably boosts his viability as a fantasy option.
The Matthew Stafford-led attack averaged a shade below 400 total yards per game, 300 of which came through the air, and scored 29.6 points per game in 2011.
It enters the 2012 season as one the premier offenses in football and has the potential to be even more explosive this year.
He Had a Strong Finish to the 2011 Season
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If the end of the 2011 season was any indication as to what is ahead for Young, he'll turn in a respectable fantasy campaign this year.
In the Lions' last four games of the regular season, he caught 17 passes for 171 yards with four touchdowns.
Those numbers may seem minimal, but he had four catches in each game during that span and demonstrated his ability as a consistent target out of the slot.
According to Anwar S. Richardson of MLive.com, Young thoroughly impressed during spring practices:
Young is catching nearly every ball thrown his way, including the less-than-perfect passes. Maybe Detroit's selection of Ryan Broyles is giving Young extra motivation, but he is starting to look like a 1,000-yard receiver.
There's still a long way to go before the games and statistics count, but Young's offseason performance is undoubtedly encouraging.
The NFC North Secondaries Are Not Strong
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There's no telling if the Minnesota Vikings, Chicago Bears or Green Bay Packers will field significantly better secondaries in 2012, but last year, they were among the worst in football.
The Packers allowed the most passing yards in the NFL in 2011. The Vikings surrendered a league-worst 107.6 QB rating per game. The Bears were one of seven teams to allow more than 4,000 yards through the air.
Sure, all these teams addressed their pass-rush and secondary in free-agency and/or the draft, but they all have to improve greatly to return to respectability.
Young has six games against these divisional foes in 2012—games in which he'll be an underrated starter at WR No. 2 or, at the very least, the WR No. 3 spot.
He Represents Fantastic Value
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Because he's relegated to a WR No. 2 or WR No. 3 role on his own team, there's a good chance Young could slip to the mid- to-late rounds of your fantasy draft.
Most owners are aware of him and his potential but will look to select more established wideouts before taking the chance on the former Boise State Bronco.
Due to that, you won't need to take a high pick on him. If he breaks out—which is certainly plausible—you'll have stolen an extremely viable wideout, especially if you're playing in a points-per-reception league.
He May Return Kicks and Punts in 2012
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According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free-Press, "Young worked extensively in the return game this spring, and when training camp opens later this month the second-year receiver will be in the mix to handle kicks and punts."
While you obviously won't rely on Young's return yardage to factor in your scoring on a weekly basis, the more touches, the better.
After completing a tremendous return career in college, Young's definitely capable of taking a punt or kick to the house.