PFF projects big year for Texans’ offense in fantasy football

The Houston Texans look poised to be one of the league’s top units both on the field in the world of fantasy football behind second-year star C.J. Stroud.

Houston made two big splashes on the offensive side of the ball, acquiring Pro Bowl running back Joe Mixon in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals and adding All-Pro receiver Stefon Diggs from the Buffalo Bills. 

When factoring in the return of Tank Dell from his broken fibula, plus another prominent year from Nico Collins, the Texans have arguably the best-supporting cast in the AFC entering draft weekend. 

Pro Football Focus is high on the Texans offense, too, ranking seven players in its pre-NFL draft top 200 list. 

Collins and Diggs each produced as No. 1 targets last season while helping their respective franchises make the postseason. Now as a duo, their overall status dipped compared to teams with only one legit top weapon.

Collins is the first Texan to appear on the list at number 30 overall as WR 16. Diggs made an appearance at No. 39 and was listed as WR 22.

Houston is one of four teams with two receivers ranked in the top 25, along with the Philadelphia Eagles, Miami Dolphins and San Francisco 49ers. However, the Texans are the lone team with three wideouts ranked inside the top 30, as Tank Dell is the WR 29.

There’s no telling who the number one option is until the season starts, but all three are rated highly in targets per route run. Collins ranked ninth at 27%, Diggs at 26% ranked 11th, and Dell posted a 23% TPRR.

PFF doesn’t foresee a sophomore slump from Stroud with a former All-Pro added to the offense. The reigning Offensive Rookie of the Year finished last season as QB 10, but shot up the list to QB 4 following Houston’s trade for Diggs.

Stroud thrived on efficiency, dropping back an average of 36.35 times a game, which was the 15th highest, according to Fantasy Life

Last season Houston finished 13th in scoring, averaging 22.2 points per game. Stroud also led the league in passing yards per contest (274.1) and touchdown-to-interception ratio.

The Texans entered the offseason with the intent of upgrading the ground game. Even after a promising first year behind Stroud, Houston averaged the fifth-fewest yards per carry (3.7) and scored ten rushing touchdowns.

Mixon’s arrival should alleviate the pressure off Stroud on early downs. That’s at least the hope on paper. On PFF’s list, Mixon ranked 51st overall as the 16th among RBs.

Neither Mixon nor backup running back Dameon Pierce —ranked 200th and RB 66 — profile as terrific receiving backs, meaning the Texans may add one through the draft. If they don’t, Mixon slots as a workhorse on one of the league’s best offenses.

Mixon had the second-highest percentage of his team’s carries inside the 5-yard line last season at 88%. At 208 pounds, Mixon’s frame makes him a promising option to handle the bulk of goal-line attempts.

Dalton Schultz’s targets likely will go down with Diggs’ arrival, but he’ll benefit from playing in a pass-heavy offense. Last season, Schultz posted a 21% endzone target rate, which ranked ninth amongst tight ends, according to Fantasy Life

Schultz is the TE 13 between Dallas Cowboys‘ Jake Ferguson and Philadelphia Eagles’ Dallas Goedert. Last year, he finished as the TE 10 with 59 receptions, 635 yards, and five touchdowns.

The draft will shake the rankings up, but it’s clear that many people want a slice of the Texans’ offense this year.

Story originally appeared on Texans Wire