Though the starters only played one drive, Kirk Cousins and Stefon Diggs were deadly in-sync to kick off 2018. Cousins went 4/4 for 42 yards and 1 TD — with Diggs hauling in 3 of the completions for 35 yards and the score. New OC John DeFilippo’s offense looked as explosive as can be, and Diggs appears primed for a Target Hog role in this juggernaut. Barring health, Diggs seems locked-in for a WR1 season.
Though overreacting to Preseason Box Scores is sheepish, spotting rapport is necessary– especially between a new QB-WR duo. The Cousins-Diggs connection was in midseason form, especially on a beautiful 28-yard reception; here, Diggs destroyed the coverage with a pristine double-move, and Cousins tossed a dime down the sideline, over the defender’s shoulder and right into Diggs’ outstretched arms. Just two failed rushes later, and the pair connected once more for the 1-yard TD after Diggs shielded the defender with his body on a deadly slant.
Post-game, Cousins suggested this chemistry is nothing new, while hinting he’ll deliver weekly target baths:
“[Diggs] makes plays,” Cousins said. “He makes plays and gives you the motivation to give him the ball more and more. To trust him and throw him open and make the contested catch. Once again tonight, he proved me right.”
We’ve long been recommending Diggs over last-year’s breakout star Adam Thielen, and this early showing only further validates our case. With some Antonio Brown-lite to his game, Diggs has always been a strong “Individual Talent.” Now, this should fully flourish thanks to the “Surrounding Talent” upgrade in Cousins, and a “Coaching Scheme” boost in DeFilippo — an aggressive play-caller who’s a master in the Red Zone (perfect, considering Diggs was PFF’s top-graded WR in contested situations). Health is an admitted question mark, as Diggs has missed time each year and played banged up through others. Still, with every other factor on the Fantasy Stock Formula grading out to perfection, Diggs seems ready for the WR1 Elite Leap.
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