One of the top-ranked quarterbacks to enter the NFL and fantasy football in recent years, Jacksonville Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence projects to be a late-round pick as his 2022 fantasy outlook suggests there is upside but some lingering questions. With the NFL season and fantasy drafts closing in, what is Lawrence’s fantasy outlook in 2022, and could he prove to be valuable at his current ADP?
Trevor Lawrence’s fantasy outlook for 2022
I am sure this will come as no surprise, but Lawrence’s rookie season did not go according to plan. Virtually every stat paints the same picture, only with a different brush. Finishing as the QB22, Lawrence led the NFL with -72.3 FPOE (fantasy points over expectation). He completed just 59% of his passes for less than 3,700 yards, had a nearly 2:3 TD-to-INT ratio, and averaged fewer fantasy points per game than Darrell Henderson. Not an ideal start for the QB deemed the next great one since his high school days.
It’s hard for me to put all the blame on Lawrence when his coach was Urban Meyer, the greatest charlatan in NFL history. Now, Lawrence goes from a coach who couldn’t keep his hands to himself to one who has a Super Bowl ring around his finger in Doug Pederson.
While I hate to take too much from the preseason, Lawrence has looked comfortable and is making throws we know someone of his pedigree can pull off. There is also far more space, thanks to properly designed route concepts. Lawrence, for me, is getting a pass for last year but did earn some valuable experience on what it feels like not to be the best player on the field for the first time. I wouldn’t bet on a repeat of last year for him as a sneaky QB option.
Volume and some much-needed stability will be there for Lawrence in 2022. Only once in Pederson’s five years in Philly did the Eagles finish outside the top 10 in passing attempts. Throw in negative game scripts and a relatively decent schedule, and Lawrence could have a breakout fantasy season in 2022.
How the Jaguars’ depth chart impacts Trevor Lawrence’s fantasy projection for the season
Few want to admit this, but I will. The Jaguars are sneakily loaded with talent. Travis Etienne Jr. is back from injury and should be a fixture in the passing game. While he shouldn’t have been a first-round pick, the chemistry between the former Clemson teammates should make for easy completions to move the chains. Also, James Robinson looks ready for Week 1. Not only did he avoid the PUP list, but he has been practicing as he continues to recover from a torn Achilles he suffered last year.
At receiver is where it gets interesting. Christian Kirk received a boatload of cash in the offseason and will fill the role left by DJ Chark. Based on what we are seeing, Kirk is still in the prime of his career and will have the ball coming his way a ton in 2022. In Week 2 of the preseason, Kirk caught five of Lawrence’s first eight passes. He is a great value right now in drafts.
Speaking of value, Marvin Jones Jr. is likely underdrafted. Jones led the way with 120 targets last season, recording 73 catches for 832 yards and four TDs. When the Jaguars were inside the 30-yard line, Jones could get an outside release, and Lawrence would target him for a big play. The WR34 of 2021 recorded 17 red-zone targets, good enough for the fourth most.
There is also Laviska Shenault, who, despite having 100 targets, is a bit of an enigma as there have even been trade rumors circulating. Also at receiver are Zay Jones, Laquon Treadwell, and Jamal Agnew. At tight end, Jacksonville signed Evan Engram to pair with the underrated Dan Arnold. Pederson ran 12-personnel on 52% of his plays with the Eagles in 2019. Between 2016 and 2020, it never dipped below 35%.
Lawrence’s ADP for 2022
With an ADP of 143, Lawrence is coming off the board as the QB19 in PPR formats, placing him in the 13th round in 12-team fantasy leagues. In Superflex drafts, he tends to go between the third and fourth rounds due to the positional scarcity.
In PFN’s 2022 fantasy football redraft rankings, Lawrence is the QB18 as the 148th-ranked player. In 1QB formats, I tend not to draft two quarterbacks or wait this long to select my starter. However, if you have deep enough benches where the extra pick will not hurt your depth, drafting Lawrence to your fantasy football team does add both injury protection and some upside if everything all of a sudden clicks.
In Superflex drafts, I typically try to have both of my QBs selected before Lawrence is the best available. The cutoff for me this year is the Derek Carr and Kirk Cousins range as the stability seems to dip. With that said, if the draft doesn’t work out right for some reason or you simply couldn’t pass up on value sliding in the draft, Lawrence is an upside QB2 to pair with a more stable and proven QB1.