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Sizing Up Fantasy Football Rookies That Flopped in 2022 (Skyy Moore, Zamir White, Isaiah Spiller, Jalen Tolbert)

Skyy Moore - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Regardless of the fantasy football format you play in (dynasty, keeper, redraft, etc.), rookies represent an opportunity to acquire young talent with an unknown ceiling. Each year, we draft several of these individuals hoping they actualize their potential.

Unfortunately, not all of them will. Sometimes injuries will derail their campaign or end it early. Other times it is because of their inability to earn a substantial role and climb the depth chart. In any case, they disappoint relative to expectations.

Below you'll find a list of all the rookies drafted in the top 170, averaged from August 20th, 2022, to September 7th, 2022, primarily when redraft and keeper leagues were completing their drafts. You'll also find four individuals who outright flopped this year, failing to contribute in any meaningful way, separate from injuries. They're listed by ADP from highest to lowest.

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List of Rookies Drafted - Top 170

No. 50 - Breece Hall
No. 64 - Dameon Pierce
No. 85 - Drake London
No. 95 - Chris Olave
No. 101 - James Cook
No. 102 - Kenneth Walker III
No. 104 - Skyy Moore
No. 106 - Treylon Burks
No. 111 - George Pickens
No. 124 - Rachaad White
No. 128 - Jahan Dotson
No. 129 - Garrett Wilson
No. 133 - Tyler Allgeier
No. 134 - Isiah Pacheco
No. 139 - Romeo Doubs
No. 144 - Brian Robinson Jr.
No. 150 - Zamir White
No. 155 - Isaiah Spiller
No. 156 - Jalen Tolbert
No. 158 - Wan'Dale Robinson
No. 161 - Alec Pierce
No. 164 - Christian Watson


Skyy Moore (Wide Receiver - Kansas City Chiefs)

The Chiefs spent a second-round pick to add Moore, who they took 54th overall. Following the Tyreek Hill trade, there was a lot of speculation about who would fill his role and the utilization of the remaining receivers. They still had Mecole Hardman, plus they added JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling in free agency, but there was definitely an opportunity for Moore.

In their opening contest against the Cardinals, they scored 44 points, but Moore had just one catch for 30 yards. He also contributed on special teams, returning kicks and punts, indicating he was still vying for playing time. He went the next two weeks without a reception before compiling a better three-game stretch, totaling five catches on 10 targets for 70 yards. It wasn't a huge role, but at least it was trending in the right direction.

Things took a turn two weeks later when the team traded for Kadarius Toney, a sign they felt the need to bolster their receiving corps. He resurfaced briefly in Weeks 11 and 12, correlating with injuries to Hardman and Smith-Schuster, but never made a significant impact. He finished with 22 catches for 250 yards and no touchdowns, adding three carries for 24 yards. Anyone who invested in him or picked him up off waivers was disappointed.

In terms of his future outlook, there are some ways in which his role could grow. Hardman's rookie contract is over, Smith-Schuster and Justin Watson only signed a one-year deal, and Toney has yet to demonstrate he can stay healthy. That leaves a depth chart of Valdes-Scantling, Toney, and Moore. Kansas City will bring one of them back or draft/sign other players, but there is a path to relevance if he can earn the coaching staff's trust.


Zamir White (Running Back - Las Vegas Raiders)

It was a rollercoaster ride for White, who at one point seemed primed to take on a lead-back role in Las Vegas. There were rumors about the future of Josh Jacobs that stemmed from the team declining to pick up his fifth-year option. Things intensified when Jacobs played a significant number of snaps in the Hall of Fame game. Depending on when your draft was, White may have crept into the middle rounds, making him a player you believed you could start.

Not only did Jacobs maintain his workhorse role, he actually won the rushing title. White totaled 17 rushing attempts on the season for 70 yards, plus he finished without a target.

Everything about White's value depends on what the Raiders do with Jacobs. He was a fourth-round pick, so they didn't invest high draft capital, but he might be the last one remaining. Ameer Abdullah's contract ended, and they can cut Brandon Bolden for $625,000, so there are a lot of variables. Early reports indicate the team would like to bring Jacobs back. However, all possibilities are on the table at this point. It'll be a fascinating offseason for Las Vegas, both at the running back and quarterback positions.


Isaiah Spiller (Running Back - Los Angeles Chargers)

The Chargers went through the 2021-2022 NFL season without a competent backup for Austin Ekeler. After drafting Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree III, they took a shot by acquiring Spiller in the fourth round. He struggled to prove he was capable of the role during training camp and the preseason, but many decided he was worth grabbing in the later rounds as an insurance back.

After the first seven weeks, he carried the ball once for a five-yard loss. However, Kelley suffered an injury that sidelined him until Week 12, thrusting Spiller into the backup role. In those four contests, he operated he rushed the ball 17 times for 46 yards with three receptions for 13 yards. Unfortunately, Kelley returned and the team signed Sony Michel to fill the void, relegating Spiller to fourth on the depth chart. He never touched the ball again, finishing with 54 total scrimmage yards in his rookie campaign. 

Kelley is in the final year of his rookie deal, and they can cut Rountree III without any dead cap hit. However, the most likely option for Los Angeles is adding someone in free agency or drafting another back. Spiller is a stash in dynasty leagues, with a strong probability of being irrelevant for the remainder of his rookie deal.


Jalen Tolbert (Wide Receiver - Dallas Cowboys)

Something we learned from the Cowboys' recent playoff exit is that they need help at receiver. They traded away Amari Cooper for pennies on the dollar to Cleveland, added James Washington, and drafted Tolbert 88th overall. Michael Gallup was coming off a serious knee injury, creating a massive opportunity for whoever could establish themselves behind CeeDee Lamb

Tolbert was inactive for their first two games, which was obviously not the start fantasy managers who selected him had in mind. He made his debut in Week 3, hauling in one pass for four yards before sitting out Weeks 4 and 5. In total, he played only eight games, caught two passes, and never cleared 36% of the offensive snaps. Furthermore, the team expressed interest in Odell Beckham Jr. and  T.Y. Hilton, the latter of which they signed.

Lamb and Gallup will lead the way in 2023, but despite Hilton and Noah Brown becoming free agents, there's nothing to indicate Tolbert will rebound in the future.

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