As SI.com's Patrick D. Starr notes, the Texans have been waiting for the offense to take off, and it is no coincidence that it put up nearly 600-yards of total offense on Sunday and Will Fuller
had one of the best days of his career.
As fantasy managers are undoubtedly aware, it has been a relatively slow start for Fuller. Until Sunday against the Falcons.
That's when Fuller put up 14 receptions for 217 yards and three touchdowns. His 200-plus yard receiving day was the first of the 2019 season in the NFL, showing how explosive Fuller can be on the outside of the offense.
Fuller has been working the entire camp and preseason to get his knee back to form for the long haul of the season.
"I'm still working on some things, too," Fuller said of his knee. "It still gets stiff here and there, so still working on some things, still going to treatment, taking care of my knee. But yeah, definitely helped, it played a big part. I'm starting to feel more like myself like you said. Just staying on top of it because it was a serious injury. I don't want it to get stiff."
Head coach Bill O'Brien knows how important Fuller is to the offensive scheme for the Texans and how well he works with Deshaun Watson
in the passing game.
"He's a good player," O'Brien said of Fuller. "He's a good open-field player. He's a good deep route runner. We've got a good deep ball thrower and an accurate passer, and they have good chemistry."
Fuller's 14 receptions tied him for the most receptions in a game in franchise history with Andre Johnson
, and he put up the fifth-most receiving yards a player in a game in franchise history with 217.
took joy in seeing his good friend Fuller not only produce but have the biggest game of his career bouncing back from his torn ACL from last season.
"I love it," Hopkins said of Fuller. "Will putting in work, putting work in all season. Coming off of injuries, a guy like that to come out and have that kind of game, I'm a proud big brother."
Fuller put in the extra rehab work this off-season to get back on the field for the start of training camp with no limitations. The sooner he was able to do that, the more preparation he could do to get ready for the season.
His main goal was to get back on the field to be part of the offense when the season started.
"I mean, I really can't explain it," Fuller continued. "Just coming back from my ACL, I just wanted to be out there with my guys and help them win."
Fuller continued, "I was just trying to get into a groove of things and help my team
Remember: Fuller entered the game with a 14 catches for 183 yards and no touchdowns on 23 targets during Weeks 1-4.
But ESPN's Mike Clay contends last week's explosion shouldn't have been a complete surprise. The 2016 first-round pick entered the game having handled a 19 percent target share while playing 97 percent of the offensive snaps.
Clay added: "Fuller has had an extremely boom/bust career and that's what we should expect moving forward. Consider him a WR3 most weeks and a fringe WR2 in a good matchup against the Chiefs in Week 6."
Be clear, however; the Chiefs have allowed the second-fewest fantasy points to outside receivers, but the ninth-most to the slot this season. Despite that fact, Clay notes the likes of Kenny Golladay
(5-67-2), DJ Chark (4-146-1), Chris Conley
(6-97-1) and Tyrell Williams
(5-46-1) all primarily align outside and still had good fantasy performances against the Chiefs.
ESPN's Al Zeidenfeld notes we haven't seen that jaw-dropping game from Hopkins yet, but he's been very steady so far. He's one of only three players in the league with at least five catches and seven targets in every game this season (Cooper Kupp
and Michael Thomas
are the other two). The Chiefs have allowed three wideouts to score over 21.5 points -- and they were all taller targets like Hopkins.
It's only a matter of time before he dominates a game and, with Fuller demanding more attention from opposing defenses, Hopkins could be left running free more often than in the past.
The Texans get to attack a Chiefs defense that has seen the fifth-highest amount of deep throws on the season and Zeidenfeld notes that Watson ranks fourth in terms of completions on balls thrown 20-plus yards this season.