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Julio Jones fantasy outlook: Dominance, dominance, dominance

Unless you’re in a scoring only format, Julio’s your boy.

Atlanta Falcons Practice Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Julio Jones is a monster. End of story. When it comes to fantasy football, the story is only slightly more complicated, because no one has ever regretted drafting a healthy Julio Jones. But we should talk about him, even so, because chances are this year will be a bit different for #11.

Let’s talk fantasy, though. The 2017 season in particular.

2016 Production

Standard: 12.6 ppg

PPR: 18.6 ppg

2016 WR Rank: #6

Julio, like Matt Ryan, is a much more productive real world player than he is a fantasy player. In 2016, Julio was one of the league’s most incredible receivers again in 2016, putting up insane production on under 100 receptions, and making the Panthers his children along the way.

In the world of fantasy, however, Julio is merely one of the best, not the best. He was around the #6 receiver in the NFL last year after a 2015 season that ranks as his most productive ever. In scoring-only formats, which is chiefly what I play, he’s decidedly middle of the pack.

Let’s not get it twisted, though. Julio’s great, and as always, he was a fantasy asset in 2016.

2017 Outlook

If you’re hoping for bigger and better things for Julio in 2017, there are reasons for optimism. Steve Sarkisian has pledged to get him more red zone targets, and Kyle Shanahan’s play calling certainly wasn’t as helpful for #11’s fantasy stock in 2016 as it was in 2015.

I think it’s very possible Julio pulls down 100 receptions and 8 touchdowns this year, which would make him one of the best two or three receivers in most fantasy formats. You need to understand that Julio’s variance, if healthy, swings between great production and truly elite production.

Even if he mimics his 2016 production, Julio will be worth going for after the first round in all non-scoring formats. He’s an absurdly great receiver, and as good as this Falcons offense is in so many facets, Julio will continue to be the man this offense runs through. Draft with confidence.