Fantasy Football

2021 Dynasty Football: K.J. Osborn


Last week we talked about the Dynasty impact of Elijah Mitchell, so let’s hope you either drafted him or picked him up in your league, because he might be the only healthy body in San Francisco’s backfield. This week we’re talking about another hot pickup in 2021 Dynasty Football: K.J. Osborn.

He’s lit it up as the third guy in Minnesota’s already high-flying offense this year. He leads the team in receiving yards and showed big-play ability on his 64-yard touchdown catch against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 2.

That’s all well and good, but what about the prospects going forward? Well, you’ve got a couple of factors here and they’re pretty big ones. Adam Thielen is 31 years old, so he’s entering the twilight portion of his prime. Justin Jefferson is an Alpha Wideout already, so you’ve got to contend with him for targets.

The final piece to this puzzle is Kirk Cousins. The Vikings QB is incredibly talented but inconsistent. Sometimes he looks like he belongs among the top guys at the position, and then other times (mostly when he’s under pressure) he doesn’t look like he should be starting. Cousins’ contract with the Vikings is up after the 2022 season. So you have to think a bit ahead, but the general rule for Dynasty is try to win now and keep the future alive.

2021 Dynasty Football: K.J. Osborn

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The Good And Bad For K.J. Osborn In Minnesota

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So, you have some roadblocks ahead of Osborn for production, but there are some silver linings here, especially for this year.

One, Minnesota doesn’t have a viable Tight End to throw to, like in years past. Kyle Rudolph is gone, Irv Smith Jr. is out for the season, and Chris Herndon might be the darling of every fantasy expert out there, but it’s not working this year. Dalvin Cook will also command targets, but the Vikings are looking like a team that’ll have to pass for the foreseeable future to stay in games.

That’s the obvious path to relevancy for Osborn. He’s also looked fantastic out there in the 80 percent of offensive snaps that he played this week.

Second, Adam Thielen and Dalvin Cook aren’t the poster children for health. They both have lengthy injury woes including Thielen breaking down as last year went on. That’s where Osborn comes in. There really isn’t a guy behind him on the depth chart that can leapfrog him unless you’re a huge Dede Westbrook or Chad Beebe fan.

If you’re looking farther into the future, it might look like Adam Thielen’s contract is a roadblock for Osborn to really take a step forward into the WR2 of this team, but closer inspection shows that the Vikings can cut Thielen after this year and save a huge chunk of change on the cap. That number gets larger as we get through his four-year extension, but it could only be a year or two before Osborn is the number two in this offense.

If Cousins sticks around or Minnesota gets crazy bringing in Aaron Rodgers or someone like that, the ceiling gets even higher. Osborn is a talented player out of Miami, he just needs the opportunity.

What To Do With Osborn?

If you have him, hold onto him, you likely didn’t need to spend a lot on him.

If you want to acquire him, he might be harder to trade for now that he’s had two pretty great games in a row. Check with the owner in your league and see what it’ll take to get him. They might be trying to sell high thinking that Thielen and Jefferson are the real deal and Osborn is a two-week wonder.

This Minnesota offense has shown that it can support three pass-catchers. Remember when Kyle Rudolph was stringing together useable fantasy finishes. Now that they don’t have a Tight End that’s playable, Osborn can really step in.

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About Hunter Bolding

Dynasty, DFS, and everything else under the Fantasy Sports umbrella.

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