Fantasy Football

Who is Josh Reynolds? Should I Pick Him Up?

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Josh Reynolds exploded onto the fantasy football scene in Week 1 of the 2023 season. The 27-year-old wide receiver for the Detroit Lions hauled in 4 catches for 80 yards against the Kansas City Chiefs. This impressive performance has fantasy owners scrambling to the waiver wire, wondering if Reynolds can sustain this production. Here’s a comprehensive look at Reynolds’ background, Week 1 performance, and fantasy outlook.

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The Background

Reynolds played college football at Texas A&M from 2014-2016. He steadily improved each year, capping off his senior season with 61 catches for 1,039 yards and 12 touchdowns. The LA Rams selected Reynolds in the 4th round of the 2017 NFL Draft.

He worked his way up the depth chart in LA, peaking in 2020 with 52 catches for 618 yards and 2 TDs. Prior to 2022, Reynolds signed a 2-year deal with the Lions in free agency. He is currently listed as a starting outside receiver on Detroit’s depth chart.

Week 1 Breakout Game

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In Sunday’s matchup against the Chiefs, Reynolds led the Lions with 4 catches for 80 yards on 7 targets. He averaged an impressive 20 yards per catch, with a long of 33 yards. Reynolds accounted for nearly 1/3 of Detroit’s total passing yards.

Projected Over 17 Games

If Reynolds can maintain this level of production over a full season, he’s looking at some seriously impressive numbers. Over 17 games, he would be on pace for about 68 catches and1,360 receiving yards. For perspective, if Reynolds hit those marks, he would have finished 2022 as the WR11 in total fantasy points.

Fantasy Football Outlook

It’s unlikely that Reynolds keeps up that exact same pace all season long. However, he has clearly established himself as Detroit’s top outside receiving weapon. Jared Goff loves pushing the ball downfield to Reynolds. With defenses focused on containing RB David Montgomery and WR Amon Ra St. Brown, Reynolds should continue seeing plenty of single coverage and deep targets.

Reynolds is currently rostered in just 2.5% of ESPN fantasy leagues. If he can average even 14 fantasy points per game in 0.5 PPR formats, he will outproduce his ADP and become a weekly fantasy starter. Consider picking up Reynolds now before his ownership shoots up.

The Bottom Line

Josh Reynolds has an excellent opportunity for a career year in Detroit. He has the size and speed to win one-on-one matchups and should see plenty of downfield targets. Reynolds has a real chance to establish himself as a high-end fantasy WR3 this season. Don’t hesitate to put in a waiver claim for the emerging Lions wideout.

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