10. Rondale Moore – WR, AZ
Rondale Moore struggled with injuries last year, but when healthy he appeared to improve upon a solid rookie year. The speedy, undersized receiver has found a solid niche as the Cardinals’ slot receiver. Before his injury, Moore recorded three straight games with at least eight targets.
Moore had a massive target share last year, and even saw 13 targets in a win against the Rams, perhaps his best performance of the year. Moore was a Kingsbury favorite, but if the trade rumors around DeAndre Hopkins come to fruition, he could see a massive role in the Cardinals’ offense next year under the new regime.
9. Greg Dulcich – TE, DEN
Greg Dulcich was stellar for a rookie tight end, despite playing in the league’s worst offense in terms of points per game. Dulcich showed off excellent receiving skills and athleticism, traits that are rare in a 6’4 tight end with solid size.
If he can improve as a route runner and blocking threat, he could emerge as one of the premiere tight ends in fantasy football.
8. Darnell Mooney – WR, CHI
Darnell Mooney is one of the more talented young receivers in the game right now but has yet to turn in a solid fantasy football season to this point. Last year, Mooney missed the Bears’ last six games of the season with an ankle injury. Meanwhile, quarterback Justin Fields took a major step forward as a runner, but struggled with consistency as a thrower.
With Fields blossoming into a star, one must expect him to hone his elite arm talent into more consistent accuracy next year. If he does, you can expect Mooney to be the main benefactor of that success.
7. Cam Akers – RB, LAR
Cam Akers was a massive disappointment for much of the 2022 season, along with most of the highly coveted fantasy assets on the defending champion Los Angeles Rams. After trudging through twelve weeks of awful production, Akers did not even look like he would be worth a roster spot in 2023.
However, Akers improved dramatically in the final six weeks of the season, averaging 17.7 points per game, while scoring six touchdowns. Akers looked like a stud as a rookie and seemed to finally return to his pre-Achilles tear form at the end of last year. He could be a massive steal next season in redraft formats.
6. George Pickens – WR, PIT
George Pickens, also known as NFL Youngboy, fell to the Steelers in the second round of the 2022 draft thanks to off the field issues and injury concerns. However, the young buck looked fantastic as a rookie, making spectacular one-handed grabs and clutch plays at times.
The rookie connection of Pickett to Pickens looked like a worthy investment for the Steelers organization, and only figures to grow stronger in year two. With Pickens likely to jump Diontae Johnson as the top dog in the WR core, he should be the most heavily targeted receiver on this team in redraft formats.
5. Tyler Allegier – RB, ATL
It was quietly a very solid season for rookie running backs last year, as Dameon Pierce and Breece Hall lived up to lofty preseason expectations. However, one rookie who slipped through the cracks was Falcons running back Tyler Allegier. He amassed over 1,000 yards on the ground, more than any rookie running back in the league, and managed to stay healthy the entire season.
The Falcons backfield was difficult to trust in the 2022 offseason, led by an aging Cordarelle Patterson and another young back in Caleb Huntley. However, with injuries saddling Huntley and Patterson throughout the year, Allegier took over the backfield, and even looked like the best offensive player on the team by the end of the season.
In his final four games, Allegier averaged 17 fantasy points per game, and recorded two games with over 130 rushing yards. His receiving production may be concerning, but he should see more red zone and goal line work in his second season. With his projected ADP sitting at the fraction of the cost of Hall and Pierce, Allegier could be a very sneaky breakout pick in 2023.
4. Javonte Williams – RB, DEN
Not too long ago, Javonte Williams was the most talked about rookie running back in the league. With the ferocity and talent to become a true feature back, and the ghost of Melvin Gordon no longer haunting his backfield, Williams could see a major fantasy breakout next year.
He figures to be an under-the-radar player in re-draft formats, as he missed almost the entire 2022 season with a torn ACL. Make no mistake, Williams has all the tools necessary to become an RB1 in fantasy.
3. Tua Tagovailoa – QB, MIA
Unfortunately, after an electric and promising start to the year, the Dolphins season became better known as the year of the concussion for Tua Tagovailoa. However, the young quarterback managed to accomplish a lot in the time he did spend on the field. He proved that the offseason hype from his coaches and teammates was warranted, growing into one of the more accurate quarterbacks in the league.
Tagovailoa’s deep ball looked much better than many anticipated. With Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill still terrorizing opposing secondaries for him next year, fantasy managers should trust that Tagovailoa will see better injury luck, and more fantasy success in 2023.
2. Chris Olave – WR, NO
Chris Olave was stellar as a rookie, using elite quickness and route running to put together a 1,000-yard season. He instantly became the Saints’ top receiver, with Michael Thomas struggling with injuries and looking like he is past his prime.
Olave is a star waiting to break out, and with the Saints evaluating the quarterback market he should improve yet again next year.
1. Garrett Wilson – WR, NYJ
Garret Wilson needs no introduction, as he was an elite receiver despite being saddled with poor quarterback play all year during his rookie season. Wilson is a stellar route runner, just like his former college teammate in Olave. Also similar to Olave, Wilson’s Jets were saddled by inconsistent QB play all season.
Luckily, Wilson will almost assuredly have a new veteran quarterback by next year, with the Jets ready to move on from the failed Zach Wilson experiment. He was already solid as a rookie, but could burst into WR1 territory in his second year.