Devery Henderson’s Fantasy Value

By Vidur Malik

Drew Brees’ ability to spread the ball around to all his targets is great for the New Orleans Saints’ offense, but it can force fantasy owners to make some tough decisions. Unless you have the entire Saints offense on your team, you’re going to have to guess when to start or sit players based on who you think is going to be a target for Brees. I had this issue last season when I picked up Saints receiver Devery Henderson, but he should be able to start more this season, and be a number three receiver on your team.

With Henderson, Marques Colston, Robert Meachem, and Lance Moore, the Saints are loaded at the receiver spot. Jeremy Shockey is a receiving threat at tight end, and David Thomas has become another tight end option as well. Add in running backs Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas, who can both catch the ball out of the backfield, and you’ve got a toss-up for who will be the main target on any given game day. Even with all the weapons around him, Henderson put up 804 receiving yards and two touchdowns last year. He did this despite another productive year from Colston, and a breakout season from Meachem, who didn’t record as many yards as Henderson, but did have nine touchdowns. When he is healthy, Colston is one of the NFL’s best receivers, and is the Saints’ number one option, but he has been injury-prone throughout his career. Meachem is probably the number two receiver. He had toe surgery during the off-season, but reports indicate that he should be able to participate in training camp. Henderson was also injured with a sports hernia in the off-season, and had surgery for it in May, but he should be good for training camp according to reports. If anyone else isn’t at full strength this year, Henderson is someone who can become a more reliable option.

Though he only caught two touchdowns last year, he is a big play threat who can stretch the field. He equaled his regular season touchdown total in the postseason, with a touchdown in the Saints’ victories over the Cardinals and the Vikings. He didn’t catch a touchdown in the Saints’ Super Bowl win, but he did have a game-high seven receptions, which tied him with Colston and Colts tight end Dallas Clark in that category. His production in the regular season and playoffs indicates that he is a player who can be counted on. The criticism he took earlier for dropping passes seems to be gone now, and if he gets close to the 15.8 yards per catch average he had last year, he can get fantasy points even if he doesn’t catch as many touchdowns as other Saints receivers. If he can team up with Brees on a few more big plays this year, he can record 800+ receiving yards, and get more touchdowns. Though he may not be the go-to guy every week for the Saints, Henderson can score at any time, and will be a helpful addition to a fantasy team.


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