Evaluating the Case for Allen Hurns
In the RotoViz spirit of leaving no stone unturned, I give you Allen Hurns, Deep Dynasty Stash. Hurns went undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft and probably for good reason, as his combine stats were pretty average or even below.
Robert Woods is an OK comparable and Rueben Randle shows up to a lesser degree but overall a pretty uninspiring list. His college production was similar. He didn’t break out until he was a 22-year-old senior.
A solid if unspectacular 0.29 senior season Dominator Rating and 11.17 YPT. But the thing that really jumps off the page is the steady decline from his sophomore season to his final season in RZTR, although he was able to convert 9 touchdowns on 28 career red zone targets (.32 RZTDR). Hurns did however, set the single season receiving record last season for the Hurricanes at 1,162 yards–topping Leonard Hankerson as well as other all-time greats at Miami such as Reggie Wayne and Andre Johnson.
So, just to recap: he had average combine numbers, does not have ideal size, and just OK production . . . what gives? Well, Hurns may have some dynasty value as early as this season.
Hurns was signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars late in May after going undrafted earlier in the month. It was a long shot for Hurns to make the roster, especially after they drafted Marquise Lee (39th overall) and Allen Robinson (61st overall) in the second round. Yet Hurns came in and was able to impress the staff.
So far this preseason, Hurns has played 80 snaps and caught six balls on nine targets for 117 yards. He’s started both preseason games but has received targets from both Chad Henne and Blake Bortles. Mike DiRocco of ESPN expects Hurns to make the final 53-man roster.
Hurns likely was thrust into the starting role because of the various Jags receivers who are currently unavailable. Justin Blackmon has had a myriad of problems that led to his indefinite suspension from the NFL last season after playing in just four games for the Jags after being suspended for the first four games to start the season. After another recent arrest it’s not likely Blackmon plays again. Ace Sanders left the team to tend to personal issues and will face a four-game suspension upon return. Veteran Cecil Shorts suffered a grade 2 hamstring strain on July 27 and has just returned to practice. It’s not expected for the Jags to push him too hard in his return. Finally, and possibly the biggest help to Hurns, rookie Allen Robinson suffered a hamstring pull of his own on August 1 and hasn’t returned, missing all of the preseason.
Hurns most likely will not crack a re-draft roster all year if Shorts and Robinson are able to come back healthy and contribute. If Robinson continues to miss time and Shorts isn’t 100 percent, it becomes more of a possibility that the undrafted rookie can give you something as the third or fourth wide receiver for the Jags. The Robinson situation is one to monitor throughout the season with an eye on the waiver wire. In deeper dynasty leagues, Hurns presents a value as he’s shown chemistry with Bortles, the Jags’ perceived long-term solution at quarterback. I would pick him up as a bottom of the roster stash and continue to see what he can do as the season progresses.