When Oklahoma star wide receiver CeeDee Lamb fell to the 17th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, it was one of the most obvious draft steals in recent memory.
Lamb, who was predicted to go near the top 10 in a receiver class that included route technician Jerry Jeudy as well as Henry Ruggs, was a great fit for the Dallas Cowboys offense at an absolutely low cost.
Henry Ruggs, Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb
Fast-forward to two years later, and Lamb is already considered among the top wide receivers in the NFL. Unsurprisingly.
In the post-draft fantasy football rankings on ESPN, Lamb comes in at No. 8 on the list. He is projected to score 249.79 fantasy points, which is predicted to narrowly edge out his 2021 production of 232.8 fantasy points.
This prediction puts him just behind receivers such as Devante Adams, Stefon Diggs, and Tyreek Hill -- all of whom have been first-team All-Pros within the last two seasons.
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Additionally, ESPN's model has Lamb accruing a combined 85 receptions of 130 targets for 1108 yards and seven touchdowns. This production is marginally better than his 2021 production, in which he caught 79 receptions on 120 targets for 1102 yards and six touchdowns.
For the first time in his career, Lamb is truly projected to be drafted as a primary wide receiver on fantasy football rosters. This sudden rise in fantasy football draft stock comes on the heels of the Cowboys dumping wide receiver Amari Cooper earlier in the offseason.
With Dallas' second wide receiver on the depth chart Michael Gallup missing the beginning of the regular season as he rehabs his knee, it's no surprise that Lamb is being looked to as the statistical beneficiary of a pass-heavy offense that thrived behind quarterback Dak Prescott's arm.
With OTAs approaching in the near future and training camp just a couple of months away, the regular season is almost here; Cowboys Nation hopes it's only a matter of time before Lamb begins to add his name to the list of elite NFL receivers.