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Player Showdown: Marvin Jones or Golden Tate?

(All offseason, Michael Moore will be looking at some specific draft conundrums facing drafters in an effort to determine which player should be the preference.)

The last big piece of the offseason, the NFL draft, has come and gone. We now know where rookies are headed and which veteran’s jobs are up for grabs. And with that we also have a clearer picture of what fantasy drafts will look like. Two players who have a lot of similarities, including playing for the same team, could have their roles upended in 2018. Marvin Jones and Golden Tate were the only receiving duo from the same team to both eclipse 1,000 yards last season. They are being drafted at nearly the same exact spot in My Fantasy League drafts, with Jones having a current ADP of 27 and Tate an ADP of 28. But the Lions have put an emphasis on the run this offseason, which could have a big impact on the passing game.

The players

While neither Tate nor Jones is often talked about as top fantasy receivers, they are both fully capable. In fact, Jones was a WR1 last year, finishing with 61 receptions for 1,101 yards and nine touchdowns. Jones was signed before the 2016 season to fill the Calvin Johnson deeper role and, to his credit, has performed well. He finished with an average depth of target of 16.1 yards last season, good for ninth in the league, and had the second-best WR rating (passer rating when targeted) last year on ‘Go’ routes behind only Tyreek Hill. Needless to say, Jones has been an effective deep threat for the Lions.

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