Jesse James
Jesse James
25-Year-Old Tight EndTE
Detroit Lions
2019 Fantasy Outlook
The four-year, $25 million deal the Lions threw at James is mostly tied to his blocking ability, as he's never been a top-20 fantasy performer at tight end through four NFL seasons. But perhaps the Lions will find more use for James' height at the goal line than the Steelers did. It was interesting to see his yards per target spike last year in a season where his opportunities cratered, but that's probably more of a small-sample anomaly than anything else. If James and Matthew Stafford show rapport in September, you can go to the market with a restrained FAAB bid. Of course, the requisite cold water applies here, too - Detroit used the No. 8 overall draft pick on T.J. Hockenson, who is a vastly superior athlete. Even with increased use of two-TE formations, the Lions will have a tough time finding regular targets for both players. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $25 million contract with the Lions in March of 2019.
No touchdowns in 2019
TEDetroit Lions
January 2, 2020
James, who caught two of three passes for five yards in Sunday's season finale against the Packers, finished the 2019 season with 16 catches (27 targets) for 142 yards and no touchdowns over 16 games.
ANALYSIS
Detroit signed the former Steeler in the offseason to help the Lions offense establish its identity in the run game. For the most part, James played his role well. While fantasy owners likely hoped for more production as a receiver -- especially when T.J. Hockenson (ankle) missed time due to injury -- prolific pass-catching has never been James' game and probably never will be. Instead, the 6-foot-7 James excels in opening holes for running backs, and that's exactly what the Lions are likely hoping from James in 2020 and beyond. The 25-year-old tight end is under contract through 2023.
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NFL Stats
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Fantasy/Red Zone Stats
See red zone opportunities inside the 20, 10 and 5-yard lines along with the percentage of time they converted the opportunity into a touchdown.
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Advanced NFL Stats
How do Jesse James' 2019 advanced stats compare to other tight ends?
This section compares his advanced stats with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average. The longer the bar, the better it is for the player.
  • Air Yards Per Game
    The number of air yards he is averaging per game. Air yards measure how far the ball was thrown downfield for both complete and incomplete passes. Air yards are recorded as a negative value when the pass is targeted behind the line of scrimmage. All air yards data is from Sports Info Solutions and does not include throwaways as targeted passes.
  • Air Yards Per Snap
    The number of air yards he is averaging per offensive snap.
  • % Team Air Yards
    The percentage of the team's total air yards he accounts for.
  • % Team Targets
    The percentage of the team's total targets he accounts for.
  • Avg Depth of Target
    Also known as aDOT, this stat measures the average distance down field he is being targeted at.
  • Catch Rate
    The number of catches made divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Drop Rate
    The number of passes he dropped divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Avg Yds After Catch
    The number of yards he gains after the catch on his receptions.
Air Yards Per Game
7.5
 
Air Yards Per Snap
0.25
 
% Team Air Yards
2.4%
 
% Team Targets
4.7%
 
Avg Depth of Target
4.9 Yds
 
Catch Rate
61.5%
 
Drop Rate
11.5%
 
Avg Yds After Catch
4.1
 
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2019
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2018 NFL Game Log
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2017 NFL Game Log
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2016 NFL Game Log
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Snap Distribution / Depth Chart
Detroit LionsLions 2019 TE Snap Distribution See more data like this
% of Team Snaps

540
0
502
0
343
0
42
0
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How often does Jesse James run a route when on the field for a pass play?
This data will let you see how Jesse James and the other tight ends for the Lions are being used. Some tight ends may have a lot of snaps, but they're not that useful for fantasy purposes because they're not actually running routes. This data will help you see when this is the case.
Jesse James
169 routes   27 targets
← More Blocking
% Routes Run
More Receiving →
66%
288 routes   59 targets
89%
6 routes   3 targets
67%
Receiving Alignment Breakdown
See where Jesse James lined up on the field and how he performed at each spot.
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2019 Jesse James Split Stats
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Measurables Review View College Player Page
How do Jesse James' measurables compare to other tight ends?
This section compares his draft workout metrics with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average.
Height
6' 7"
 
Weight
261 lbs
 
40-Yard Dash
4.83 sec
 
Shuttle Time
4.50 sec
 
Cone Drill
7.53 sec
 
Vertical Jump
37.5 in
 
Broad Jump
121 in
 
Bench Press
26 reps
 
Hand Length
9.38 in
 
Arm Length
33.00 in
 
Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Jesse James
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
The Steelers traded for Vance McDonald a week before the regular season started last year, popping whatever fantasy upside James had coming into 2017. But the 6-7 James showed what he had to offer in Week 1 while McDonald got acclimated, catching six of eight targets, including three inside the 10-yard line, for two TDs. That's as good as it got, though. Even in the six games McDonald missed, James didn't do much. He caught 17 of 26 targets in those game but posted only 5.5 YPA and scored just once more. McDonald is back to handle the starting role this season. Even if McDonald, who has missed 22 games in five seasons, were to sustain an injury, James' upside is limited because tight end has been somewhat of an afterthought in the Pittsburgh offense.
The first key point with James is his age -- although he's already played two pro seasons, he didn't turn 23 until early June. To put this in perspective, James is only a few months older than O.J. Howard, the first tight end selected in this year's draft. Benefitting from Ladarius Green's absence for most of last season, James was Pittsburgh's No. 2 red-zone target (13 looks), turning those chances into seven catches, six first downs and three touchdowns. However, he faces new competition in Vance McDonald, whom Pittsburgh acquired in an August trade with San Francisco. It's possible this could turn into a tight-end-by-committee situation before long, leaving both with marginal utility in fantasy.
Catching eight of 11 targets for 56 yards and a touchdown, James made the most of limited playing time in his rookie season. It appeared he was poised to assume the starting tight end job after Heath Miller abruptly retired during the offseason, but the signing of free agent Ladarius Green suggests the Steelers may not believe James is ready to take on that role. Still, James should see an increase in offensive snaps, particularly within the red zone, making him an interesting late-round draft pick with upside in touchdown-only formats.
Recognizing that Heath Miller can’t play forever, the Steelers selected James in the fifth round of the draft. His size (6'7/261) and athleticism suggest he can create mismatches, particularly in the red zone, but his poor blocking skills will likely limit his playing time, and subsequent fantasy value, this season.
More Fantasy News
Makes one catch
TEDetroit Lions
December 23, 2019
James caught his only target for 12 yards during Sunday's 27-17 loss to the Broncos.
ANALYSIS
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Five targets against Tampa Bay
TEDetroit Lions
December 16, 2019
James caught three of five targets for 31 yards during Sunday's 38-17 loss to Tampa Bay.
ANALYSIS
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Two catches in starting role
TEDetroit Lions
December 9, 2019
James caught one of two targets for 23 yards during Sunday's 20-7 loss to the Vikings.
ANALYSIS
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Likely new No. 1 tight end
TEDetroit Lions
December 2, 2019
James is expected to serve as the Lions' top tight end for the team's final four games of the season after T.J. Hockenson (ankle) was placed on injured reserve Monday, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports.
ANALYSIS
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Not used in passing game
TEDetroit Lions
November 29, 2019
James was not targeted during Thursday's 24-20 loss to the Bears.
ANALYSIS
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