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7 months agoAtlanta Falcons newly acquired tight end Hayden Hurst is primed to enter the TE1 landscape in 2020. After the Falcons lost Austin Hooper to the Cleveland Browns in free agency, the team gave up a second-round pick and a fifth-round pick to the Baltimore Ravens for Hayden Hurst and a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. The 6’4” tight end is a former first-round pick (25th overall) of the Baltimore Ravens, but he was injured in year one and hardly touched the field. Last year, he was buried on the depth chart with no real shot at optimal playing time, and finished with a dismal stat line of 30 receptions for 349 yards and two touchdowns. The move to Atlanta should finally allow him to shine as a featured tight end and produce as a TE1 in fantasy. Matt Ryan has targeted his TE1 92 times on average over the last two seasons, whereas Hurst’s career-high is just 39. He immediately steps into the featured tight end role, and the Falcons have all the weapons to make the most out of his skills. Wide receivers Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley are deadly weapons on the outside, and running back Todd Gurley is a force that will keep safeties and linebackers on their toes. That should allow the former South Carolina Gamecock to run free in the middle of the field and take advantage of linebacker mismatches. He has great hands, as evidenced by his 76.9% catch rate last year, and he is a physical runner with the ball in his hands. The former first-round pick also has deceptive speed, posting the fastest recorded time of any Ravens player last year. He currently sits as a screaming value at TE15 in ADP and is the perfect target for fantasy owners who do not spend an early pick on a tight end in their draft. He is especially appealing in PPR leagues as he should catch 60 passes in his sleep.--Frank Dyevoich - RotoBaller
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