2022 Fantasy Football Best Stacks

by Herms
2022 Fantasy Football Best Stacks

Greetings, readers. Welcome back to Fantasy Six Pack. If you do not already, feel free to follow me on Twitter (@HermsNFL). This article will look at the 2022 Fantasy Football Best Stacks using the multi-site average draft position (ADP) data from 4for4.com.

For those unfamiliar with the term,  the "stacking " strategy is when a Fantasy manager selects two members of the same NFL offense for their lineup. This is most commonly executed by selecting a quarterback and one of their top pass catchers (either a wide receiver or a tight end, depending on the situation).

Plainly, the logic behind this strategy is that by stacking a quarterback and a pass catcher, you are minimizing the number of variables for scoring points in your lineup. Let's use the 2013 Denver Broncos, for example. Quarterback Peyton Manning threw 55 touchdowns that season. About one-quarter of those (14) went to that season's WR1 overall in PPR scoring Demaryius Thomas per FantasyData.

Fantasy managers who rostered both Manning and Thomas that year would have benefitted twofold one out of every four times their quarterback threw a touchdown. They would have earned four points (or, depending on scoring format, six points) for the Manning passing touchdown and the six points for the Thomas receiving touchdown. That's ten points alone. And that's not counting the yardage totals, on one scoring play.

With that explained, let's look at some of the best stacks based on ADP for the 2022 Fantasy Football season.

2022 Fantasy Football Best Stacks

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Minnesota Vikings: QB Kirk Cousins (ADP QB15) and WR Justin Jefferson (ADP WR2)

This one is a touch on the obvious side. Yet sometimes the best stacks are the ones that stare you right in the face. Kirk Cousins ranks fourth in passing touchdowns (205), 13th in passing yards per game (266.3), and fifth in completion percentage (67.7%) since 2015, per Stathead. He is a remarkably consistent quarterback that has finished no lower than QB15 overall since becoming a starter in 2015. While he may not offer much rushing upside, there should be no discounting how good of a quarterback Cousins has been over the last several seasons.

Cousins' top receiver, Justin Jefferson, leads the NFL in receiving yards (3016), ranks sixth in receptions (196), and stands fifth in point per reception (PPR) Fantasy points per game (18.32) since entering the league as a rookie in 2020. On top of that, the connection between these two players shows no signs of slowing down. A little over 30% of Cousins' passing touchdowns went to Jefferson last year. Plus, Jefferson had the largest market share of his team's overall air yards (45.4%) and the fourth-highest target share (29.9%) of any receiver in 2021 per 4for4.

The Cost?

From the perspective of draft pick value, the Vikings stack is one of the more expensive ones. It requires having one of the top-half first-round selections in your draft to acquire Jefferson (average 1.05 overall ADP per 4for4). However, the benefit is that Cousins (average 9.10 overall ADP) does not require a premium selection, unlike the other top five wide receivers' battery mates in ADP.

Of the top five wide receivers in 4for4 ADP (Cooper Kupp, Justin Jefferson, Ja'Marr Chase, Davante Adams, and Stefon Diggs), only Jefferson and Adams have quarterbacks that, on average, can be selected later than round eight. If you're looking for the single-most proven, cost-effective, elite-level stack in 2022, look no further than Cousins and Jefferson.

Las Vegas Raiders: QB Derek Carr (ADP QB14) and WR Hunter Renfrow (ADP WR35)

As referenced previously when discussing draft capital affordability, Derek Carr is the other quarterback with a top-five receiver (Davante Adams) in ADP that can be selected in the ninth round (average 9.05 overall ADP). While the two haven't played football together since college in 2013, Adams has been the number one receiver in overall PPR points (813.0) and PPR points per game (21.84) since 2018 per Stathead. Pairing Carr with his former Fresno State teammate would be a sound and highly viable stack in 2022.

However, it would require a remarkably similar draft cost as the Vikings' stack of Cousins and Jefferson. And the previously stated success of Adams (average 1.11 overall ADP) came with Aaron Rodgers as his quarterback. So why not look at something a little cheaper? Despite only receiving the 30th-largest target share (min. five targets per game) in the NFL last year (21.8%) per 4for4, Hunter Renfrow finished as the WR10 overall in PPR and 17th in PPR points per game (15.2) per FantasyData.

Primarily operating out of the slot (56.5% target rate), Carr had a passer rating of 122.4 when targeting Renfrow last year. That number is tied for seventh-best per Pro Football Focus (PFF). Despite the presence of the newly-acquired Adams and incumbent tight end Dallen Waller in the Las Vegas receiving corps, what Carr and Renfrow were able to establish last year was pretty remarkable.

Josh McDaniels is coming to Las Vegas after an extensive tenure with the New England Patriots. He has a long history of an offense with slot receivers such as Julian Edelman and Wes Welker that have historically produced anecdotally in that system. Thus, there is a halfway decent chance Renfrow could operate in a similarly influential role.

The Cost?

Renfrow is being drafted on average at the 7.10 overall spot in 12-team leagues. He is a low-cost/high-upside PPR investment to pair with Carr. And we should suspect that McDaniels carries over that classic New England flavor into the Raiders offense. Bypassing Adams early in drafts and going with Renfrow offers up roster freedom while also locking in the potential for a solid return on investment in the aggregate for your lineup.

Indianapolis Colts: QB Matt Ryan (ADP QB19) and WR Michael Pittman Jr. (ADP WR13)

To close, we look at a stack better served for superflex leagues or deeper 1QB leagues. While this Colts stack does not feel particularly inspired given what we saw from veteran signal-caller Matt Ryan (average 12.02 overall ADP) last season, he does have a historical tendency to lock onto one receiver. Take it from Dave Kluge of Footballguys:

Ryan is a great quarterback for Pittman Jr. (average 3.10 overall ADP) to have on his side. In addition to Ryan's tunnel vision, the 37-year-old had not finished lower than QB15 overall since 2015 prior to last year and has only done so thrice since 2008, per Pro Football Reference.

To add to the potential for hyperfocus, Pittman Jr. finished last season as WR17 overall in PPR per FantasyData with only the 22nd-highest market share of air yards (31.9%) and the 15th-highest target share (25.9%) per 4for4. All that happened with Carson Wentz (PFF's 19th-worst graded quarterback in 2021) throwing him the ball last season.

The third-year receiver has little competition standing in his way for the passing game.  Parris Campbell, rookie Alec Pierce, and running backs Jonathan Taylor and Nyheim Hines are the majority of that competition. With a quarterback in Matt Ryan that is likely to force-feed him while presumptively better than Wentz, this Colts stack is primed for a possible breakout WR1 and safe-albeit-boring QB combo. It could very well be the smartest of all the 2022 Fantasy Football Best Stacks.

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