Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers starting quarterback Josh Freeman has signed a one-year deal with the Minnesota Vikings, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today on Monday, instantly boosting the fantasy credibility of Vikings wide receiver Greg Jennings.
Jennings was a pass-catching sensation with the Green Bay Packers before signing with Minnesota last offseason, but he wasn’t considered a fantasy impact player with an unproven quarterback like Christian Ponder starting in Minnesota.
Ponder and Jennings were not impressive together through the first three weeks of the season.The veteran wideout amassed only 11 catches from Ponder for 160 receiving yards and zero touchdowns. In his one start with Matt Cassel under center, as Ponder missed Week 4 with a rib injury, Jennings totaled three receptions for 92 yards and two touchdowns.
While Cassel may get the nod for Minnesota in Week 6 coming off a bye week, Freeman will almost certainly get a crack at the starting job, and fantasy owners should buy Jennings low with a trade or hold on to him if he is already on your roster.
Freeman has been anything but impressive on paper with a completion percentage of 45.7, a rating of 59.3 and two touchdowns compared to his three interceptions, but he has a strong arm that is ideal for stretching the field.
That’s great news for a deep threat like Jennings.
While it’s unclear how long it will take Freeman to get acclimated to the Vikings' playbook or if the team will turn to him as its lead quarterback, Jennings’ speed will make him Freeman's favorite weapon whenever he sees the field.
Fantasy owners should see a spike in Jennings' targets each week, as his speed helps the Minnesota offense take the top off of opposing defenses, resulting in big chunks of yardage and monster touchdown catches.
As long as Jennings is heavily infused into the game plan, as he should be, fantasy owners should expect around five receptions and 80 yards from him every week. With favorable matchups in the NFC North and throughout the rest of Minnesota’s schedule, expect around six touchdowns for Jennings for the remainder of the season.
Before the fantasy frenzy over Jennings kicks into high gear, get him on your roster.