Adam Thielen 2021 Fantasy Football Tip: Can The Vikings WR Return To Elite Form?

Last Updated: Jul 14, 2023

Juan Carlos Blanco offers his Adam Thielen 2021 Fantasy Football Tip And Outlook. See our full 2021 fantasy football draft coverage.

Adam Thielen 2021 Fantasy Football Tip

Adam Thielen 2020 Fantasy Football Recap

Playing without former position mate Stefon Diggs for the first time since his rookie 2014 season, Thielen appeared to have some trouble early in the 2020 season with the extra defensive attention heaped upon him. However, after averaging a modest 4.6 receptions for 58.1 yards per game over his first 10 contests of the season, Thielen bounced back to put up 5.5 catches for 67.0 yards over his last six games, turning in a trio of eight-reception efforts over that latter span.

Justin Jefferson’s emergence opposite him over the course of the season progressively appeared to make life easier on Thielen, who’ll look to hit the ground running this season in a quest to record his first 1,000-yard season since 2018.

Adam Thielen 2020 Fantasy Football Ranking (PPR)

41st Overall, WR6 (per FantasyPros)

Adam Thielen 2020 Stats:

  • 108 targets
  • 74 receptions
  • 925 yards
  • 14 receiving touchdowns
  • 12.5 yards per catch
  • 68.5% catch percentage
  • 15 games

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Adam Thielen 2021 Fantasy Football Outlook

A year ago, the Vikings’ air attack heavily centered on Thielen, Diggs, and Dalvin Cook, with the trio the subject of 287 of Kirk Cousins’ 516 pass attempts. Thielen’s 108 looks placed him only behind Jefferson’s 125, but they were a far cry from his 142 and 153-target days back in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

Now at 30-years-old but extremely durable throughout his career, Thielen could be set for a bump in looks this season. Not only is Jefferson now a widely respected commodity opposite him after a spectacular rookie campaign, but the Vikings didn’t do much to address the generally thin nature of their receiving corps behind the starting duo.

The likes of Chad Beebe and Dede Westbrook shouldn’t command too much of Cousins’ attention at Thielen’s expense, and the fact veteran tight end Kyle Rudolph is now in New York also means there’s one fewer obstacle for passes.

Adam Thielen 2021 Fantasy Football Draft Value (PPR)

Despite the up-and-down nature of his 2020 season, Thielen still managed to comfortably finish within the top 10 at his position in PPR formats. Thielen garnered 32 percent of the team’s air yards and 22.1 percent of the targets. With Jefferson no longer a wide-eyed rookie and starting from Week 1, Thielen should be primed for less overall defensive attention, especially if the young athletic tight end Irv Smith Jr. also blossoms as the unquestioned top option at his position.

It’s also worth noting Thielen’s red-zone usage was already off the charts in 2020 as he logged a career-high-tying 21 touches inside the 20, with 14 of those inside the 10. A similarly robust role in the coming season could propel him back into the top 5 at his position in PPR formats.


Juan Carlos Blanco

Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports since 1997 and actively writing about the fantasy sports and sports betting industries since 2015 for multiple websites. He has covered a wide variety of professional sports leagues, including the NFL, MLB, NBA, CFL, Arena Football League, Alliance of American Football, XFL, NPB and KBO. He was the recipient of the FSWA's 2016 Newcomer of the Year award for his work with RotoWire.

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