Fantasy: 2019 Projections - Who will lead the Patriots' backfield?
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Get ready for your season with theScore's 2019 Fantasy Football Draft Kit and subscribe to push notifications in the NFL Fantasy News section.

With training camps approaching, theScore's Justin Boone is releasing his offensive projections for all 32 teams, including his thoughts on every fantasy-relevant player.

Projections are based on the following point values in PPR leagues:

  • Passing Yards: 1 point per 25 yards
  • Passing TDs: 4 points
  • Interceptions: -2 points
  • Rushing Yards: 1 point per 10 yards
  • Rushing TDs: 6 points
  • Receptions: 1 point
  • Receiving Yards: 1 point per 10 yards
  • Receiving TDs: 6 points
  • Fumbles Lost: -2 points
  • Two-point Conversions: 2 points

2019 Fantasy Projections

AFC East
NE | BUF | NYJ | MIA
AFC North
BAL | CIN | PIT | CLE
AFC South
JAX | IND | HOU | TEN
AFC West
DEN | KC | OAK | LAC
NFC East
DAL | PHI | NYG | WAS
NFC North
DET | GB | MIN | CHI
NFC South
ATL | NO | CAR | TB
NFC West
LAR | SF | SEA | ARI

New England Patriots

Tom Brady, QB

Fantasy Points 230.58
Attempts 564
Completions 361
Pass Yards 3892
Pass TDs 25
INTs 12
Carries 21
Rush Yards 29
Rush TDs 0
Fumbles Lost 3
2PT 1

Can Brady still carry the offense with his arm? Probably, but Bill Belichick has wisely stocked up on backfield options to help take the onus off his 41-year-old quarterback. New England has quietly ranked top 12 in rushing attempts in each of the last three seasons, including two top-three finishes. With Rob Gronkowski now retired - and with the receiving corps up in the air outside of Julian Edelman - expect the Pats to lean on the run as they cruise to another AFC East crown. That makes Brady a streaming option and not an every-week fantasy starter, though his name value might persuade someone in your league to reach for him earlier than they should on draft day.

Quarterback depth: Jarrett Stidham might be the quarterback of the future in New England, but veteran Brian Hoyer will be Brady's immediate backup in 2019. However, neither replacement passer will offer any real fantasy value this season, even if Brady gets injured.

James White, RB

Fantasy Points 197.9
Carries 63
Rush Yards 216
Rush TDs 2
Fumbles Lost 0
Targets 104
Receptions 71
Rec. Yards 582
Rec. TDs 5
2PT 0

White posted the seventh-most fantasy points among running backs in PPR scoring last season, and without many reliable pass-catchers in New England, he should see another sizable target share in 2019. He's an underrated PPR fantasy weapon, as evidenced by his ADP in the late fifth round.

Sony Michel, RB

Fantasy Points 161.4
Carries 216
Rush Yards 929
Rush TDs 8
Fumbles Lost 0
Targets 21
Receptions 14
Rec. Yards 95
Rec. TDs 0
2PT 0

In PPR leagues, White gets the nod over Michel, who needs to prove he can stay healthy after missing time as a rookie and undergoing offseason surgery. It appears the red flags regarding Michel's knee prior to the NFL draft were legitimate, which is why we're projecting him to play 14 games (he suited up for 13 in 2018). It's also worth noting that while Michel displays the skills to be an effective receiving threat, he's yet to be deployed that way in college or the pros - another knock against his projected PPR production.

Running back depth: If Michel's knee limits him, the Patriots will likely turn to third-round pick Damien Harris. The rookie has become one of the more coveted backup running backs in fantasy, and for good reason, given Michel's durability concerns and the upside that exists in this backfield. Harris is a name to remember later in your draft. And though veteran Rex Burkhead is worth consideration as a deep-round stash, his roster spot is less stable after the arrival of Michel and Harris in consecutive years.

Julian Edelman, WR

Fantasy Points 256.5
Targets 149
Receptions 97
Rec. Yards 1106
Rec. TDs 7
Carries 11
Rush Yards 89
Rush TDs 0
Fumbles Lost 0
2PT 0

After serving his four-game suspension at the start of last season, Edelman was a top-10 fantasy receiver in PPR leagues the rest of the way. His connection with Brady is undeniable, and given all the uncertainty on this depth chart, you can feel confident that his target share is secure once again.

N'Keal Harry, WR

Fantasy Points 139.7
Targets 74
Receptions 48
Rec. Yards 657
Rec. TDs 4
Carries 0
Rush Yards 0
Rush TDs 0
Fumbles Lost 0
2PT 1

Josh Gordon might not be reinstated before the season, so the Patriots will need their first-round selection to get up to speed quickly. The only thing standing in Harry's path to a starting role is the rookie learning curve, which was a problem during minicamp when the young wideout struggled repeatedly, according to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe. Still, unless he falls flat on his face in the preseason, the Pats will have no choice but to trot out Harry in Week 1. Even with some early-season speed bumps in the forecast, he should see enough targets to be a borderline flex play with a very high ceiling.

Josh Gordon, WR

Fantasy Points 104.2
Targets 56
Receptions 31
Rec. Yards 492
Rec. TDs 4
Carries 0
Rush Yards 0
Rush TDs 0
Fumbles Lost 0
2PT 0

Gordon working out with Brady in the offseason is a nice story, but it doesn't guarantee the league will let him return to an NFL field anytime soon. This projection accounts for him being active for eight games in the regular season, which is purely speculation for a repeat offender. However, if he's reinstated before the season, Gordon will be a borderline WR2 in fantasy, obliterating Harry's season-long value.

Receiver depth: Everything is dependent on Harry's development and Gordon's status. A negative outcome in both situations would force the Patriots to give significant snaps to players like Phillip Dorsett, Dontrelle Inman, Braxton Berrios, or Maurice Harris - all of whom are very deep sleepers for fantasy purposes. Demaryius Thomas is also on the roster, but he's far from a lock to make the team as he recovers from an Achilles tear entering his age-32 season.

Matt LaCosse, TE

Fantasy Points 53.5
Targets 34
Receptions 21
Rec. Yards 205
Rec. TDs 2
Carries 0
Rush Yards 0
Rush TDs 0
Fumbles Lost 0
2PT 0

Our collective sadness over Gronk's retirement is only amplified when you look at the current list of tight ends in Foxborough. LaCosse's incredibly brief stint as a waiver-wire fantasy option for the Broncos isn't enough to generate hope that he can even partially fill the cleats of the future Hall of Famer. LaCosse will be a desperation play in the opening month for those who believe in miracles.

Tight end depth: If we had a time machine, Ben Watson might be the solution to New England's tight end woes. Unfortunately, he's 38 years old and is set to serve a four-game suspension for violating the PED policy. You can safely set your sights on another team when searching for a starting tight end.

2019 Fantasy Projections

AFC East
NE | BUF | NYJ | MIA
AFC North
BAL | CIN | PIT | CLE
AFC South
JAX | IND | HOU | TEN
AFC West
DEN | KC | OAK | LAC
NFC East
DAL | PHI | NYG | WAS
NFC North
DET | GB | MIN | CHI
NFC South
ATL | NO | CAR | TB
NFC West
LAR | SF | SEA | ARI

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Fantasy: 2019 Projections - Who will lead the Patriots' backfield?
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