This post comes from Justin Becker of FantasyFootballOverdose.com. You can follow him on Twitter@NBAandNFLInfo or on the Fantasy Football Overdose Google+ Page, and for more Arizona Cardinals Rumors and News visit Fantasy Football Overdose.
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Michael Floyd was supposed to bust out in 2014. With Larry Fitzgerald supposedly in his decline stage of his career and Floyd stepping up his game in 2013, it was a natural progression for Floyd to take the next step and settle in as Arizona’s top receiving option in the passing game.
Along with that new, expanded role, would come the glory of becoming one of the top producers at the wide receiver position in fantasy football. Fantasy owners who took Floyd earlier than others in fantasy drafts would be regarded geniuses. Instead of a mere WR3 option, Floyd would provide amazing value as a legit WR1.
So far, that hasn’t come to fruition. In fact, it hasn’t even come close.
With just 19 catches and two touchdowns on the season, Floyd has been a total bust across the fantasy spectrum, ranking just 49th overall among receivers according to FantasyData.com. That puts Floyd almost 100 full fantasy points behind the league leader (Antonio Brown), who is running away from everyone with over 133 fantasy points.
Not being as good as or better than Brown isn’t what crushes the souls of Floyd owners, however. It’s that he has barely been a top-50 producer over the course of the season, while not even being a top-25 producer most week, as well.
You know it’s bad when Greg Jennings, Allen Hurns, and Stevie Johnson are ahead of Floyd in the fantasy ranks. It’s even worse when Floyd isn’t even a top-two producer at his position on his own team.
Yes, the seemingly dying Larry Fitzgerald has put up top-40 numbers, while rookie slot man John Brown has also accumulated better fantasy production than both of his Arizona teammates (34th).
Figuring out that Floyd hasn’t met expectations isn’t too difficult. It’s a little eye-opening when you break it down and see exactly how poor his production has been, but anyone who owns him knows Floyd hasn’t been getting it done.
The important question is whether or not the guy can still be trusted moving forward.
While that might be impossible to know, he does have a few things working in his favor. For one, some of Floyd’s poor showings came in the three games Carson Palmer missed with a shoulder/nerve issue. During that three-game span, he caught seven passes total, while two out of the three games had him catching just one pass. That left him with one blow-up game in week three (five catches for 114 yards).
In other words, we saw what Floyd could do with Palmer right away in week one (five catches for 119 yards in the opener), and without him he understandably struggled.
Palmer returned in week six and despite being away, immediately reconnected with Floyd for two touchdowns in his next two games.
The light at the end of the tunnel is that Palmer and Floyd do have chemistry. In four games together, Palmer has helped Floyd to a solid 12-213-2 line. That goes for 100% of Floyd’s touchdowns and well over 50% of his catches and receiving yardage.
Floyd’s slow start is also magnified by a catchless Week 8 outing, which naturally has his owners panicking a bit. As bad as it came off, a slight knee tweak could have been partially responsible for Floyd’s terrible Week 8. Floyd was still targeted four times and could have potentially had some big plays if he had hauled a few of them in (two were arguably drops).
The skinny? Floyd is still going to be a huge part of what the Cardinals do, he’s still insanely talented and it’s not like he’s done absolutely nothing. It’s clearly been tough sledding to this point, but that has largely been due to Palmer being out of the lineup.
Floyd’s week nine prognosis is a solid bounce back game. He does face a solid Dallas Cowboys defense on the road, but there is just no way a guy this talented with a role in the offense stinks it up that badly again.
His rest of season projection is even better. Floyd has shown well with Palmer, and he really hasn’t even gotten started yet. Expect several big games moving forward, as Floyd eventually wrestles his fantasy value back and ascends the fantasy ranks.
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