|Ht / Wt:||6'0" / 198 lb.|
|Born:||November 6, 1992|
|Drafted:||2016 / UDFA|
Erickson got added work with the first-team offense in spring workouts due to the injuries of A.J. Green (toe) and John Ross (undisclosed), Michael LaPlaca of the Bengals' official site reports.
Analysis: Already valued for his prowess on kick and punt returns, Erickson seems to be making a case for an expanded role on offense. Whether the Wisconsin product actually improves upon the career-high 362 offensive reps he logged in 2018 is no sure thing, but it's particularly possible since the receivers above him on the depth chart (A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd, John Ross) have combined to miss 31 combined games over the past two seasons. Meanwhile, Erickson has been a modicum of health since entering the league in 2016 and hasn't missed a game. In 16 contests last year, Erickson caught 20 of 29 targets for 167 yards and no touchdowns with his best performance coming in Week 17 against the Bengals, when he caught six of six targets for 63 yards.
Erickson had six catches for 63 yards in the Bengals' loss to the Steelers on Sunday. He also had 87 kick return yards.
Analysis: Erickson's output represented two-thirds of the passing offense for the game, unfortunately. He finished the season with 20 catches for 167 yards, with the vast majority of that production coming in the final three weeks after injuries sidelined both Tyler Boyd and A.J. Green. If he returns next season, most of his production will remain on special teams.
Erickson caught both of his targets, accumulating 35 receiving yards during Sunday's 26-18 loss to the Browns.
Analysis: The third-year man out of Wisconsin has 58 receiving yards over the past two weeks, more than he's racked up in any two-game span since Weeks 11 and 12 of last season. Usually a full-time special teams ace, Erickson has garnered seven targets in the past two games, a vast increase compared to typical passing game involvement (1.5 targets per contest entering Sunday). Erickson also had a 33-yard kick return Sunday that helped spark Cincinnati's first scoring drive of the afternoon (a field goal to cut the deficit to 23-3). If Erickson continues to garner attention in the passing game with A.J. Green (foot) on injured reserve, it will come against a Pittsburgh defense that ranks 13th against the pass (237 yards allowed per game).
Erickson caught three of five targets for 23 yards during Sunday's 30-14 win over the Raiders.
Analysis: Erickson experienced an uptick in usage after teammate Tyler Boyd exited the game with a knee injury. He tied for the team lead in targets, equaling his season high in catches while finishing one yard shy of his personal best in that category. Erickson could see more targets next week against the Browns if Boyd is forced to miss out, but the latter downplayed the severity of his injury after the game.
Erickson had a 14-yard run during Sunday's 26-21 loss to the Chargers.
Analysis: The 14 total yards were the most Erickson has picked up since Week 5. The Wisconsin product has been targeted just twice, gaining two receiving yards, over his past five games. Cincinnati is bottoming out with seven losses in the last eight games, the past two with backup Jeff Driskel at quarterback. A rebound is unlikely against a Raiders defense ranked in the top half of the league in passing, surrendering just 253 yards per game.
Erickson had one catch on his lone target for two yards in Sunday's loss to the Broncos.
Analysis: Erickson barely saw the field when the Bengals had the ball, seeing just five snaps on offense.
Erickson didn't have any catches in Sunday's loss to the Ravens and was targeted just once.
Analysis: For a while it appeared that Erickson had an opportunity to get more targets with A.J. Green out, but instead those targets have flowed elsewhere. Erickson was on the field for only nine offensive snaps.
Erickson was not targeted in the passing game in Sunday's loss to the Saints. He did have five kick returns for 110 yards.
Analysis: There was some speculation that Erickson might be more active in the passing game with A.J. Green out, but it didn't work out that way, though the Bengals ran hardly any plays in the blowout loss.
Erickson was held to one catch for five yards on four targets in Sunday's win over the Bucs. He was on the field for 50 offensive snaps.
Analysis: Erickson picked up a start in place of the injured John Ross, but instead of lining up in the slot he was outside more often, leaving Tyler Boyd to carve up the Bucs from the slot instead.
Erickson will draw the start in the slot Week 8 against Tampa Bay, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
Analysis: Erickson is typically better known for his role on special teams as a return man, as he has yet to surpass three targets in a single game this season. With John Ross (groin) inactive, however, he'll draw the start and could see added looks behind the likes of top receiving options A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd. Even with a very favorable matchup -- Tampa Bay allows the second-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers in PPR formats -- Erickson is a bit of a risky fantasy play.
Erickson had just one catch that lost a yard on two targets in Sunday night's loss to the Chiefs.
Analysis: Andy Dalton nearly exclusively targeted A.J. Green in the first half, and the team had a number of three-and-outs, thus limiting Erickson's opportunities. He also had 65 yards in kickoff returns.
Erickson caught two of three targets for eight yards during Sunday's 28-21 loss to Pittsburgh.
Analysis: Erickson has now seen three targets in each of the past two games following just two in the first month of the season. The targets coincide with the absence of tight ends Tyler Eifert (ankle) and Tyler Kroft (foot), the former ending up on injured reserve. With a thinner tight end group, down-the-roster receivers such as Erickson become more valuable. Erickson has converted his targets into a measly 6.7-yards-per-catch average thus far this season, but takes on a Kansas City defense Sunday that ranks 24th in the league with a 12.5-opponent-yards-per-catch average.
Erickson had three catches for 24 yards in the Bengals' win over the Dolphins. He also had 19 yards in punt returns.
Analysis: Erickson had more offensive snaps this week with John Ross out. One of the punt returns drew a big personal foul against the Dolphins that helped set up a scoring drive in the third quarter.
Erickson could serve as the Bengals' No. 3 running back behind Joe Mixon and Mark Walton in Sunday's game against the Dolphins, Richard Skinner of Local 12 Cincinnati reports.
Analysis: Beyond Mixon and Walton, Thomas Rawls is the only other healthy running back on the 53-man roster with Giovani Bernard (knee) set to miss the next 2-to-4 weeks, but the limited value Rawls provides on special teams means he could be destined for an inactive status in Week 5. If that's the case, Erickson would likely be available as an emergency option out of the backfield, but it's still expected that his greater impact on offense would come out wide. With John Ross (groin) ruled out for the contest, Erickson, who has been limited to one catch for eight yards this season, could see ample snaps in three-receiver sets.
Erickson played 36 of a possible 73 offensive snaps (49 percent) and finished with one catch for eight yards on two targets in Sunday's 37-36 win over the Falcons.
Analysis: Erickson had logged just eight offensive snaps in the Bengals' first three contests, but he saw an enhanced role in three-wideout sets while John Ross nursed an apparent hamstring or groin injury. The added workload didn't translate to many looks for Erickson, who also benefited from No. 1 tight end Tyler Eifert's early departure due to a fractured ankle. Ross' availability for the Week 5 matchup with Miami will likely hold significant weight in how extensively Erickson is used, but even if he's pressed into action again as the No. 3 receiver, Erickson wouldn't offer much fantasy intrigue with A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd and Giovani Bernard all representing higher-priority options in the passing game.
Erickson signed a two-year contract extension with Cincinnati, Paul reports.
Analysis: Erickson is now signed with the Bengals through the 2020 season. The 25-year-old accumulated 663 kick return yards and 278 punt return yards in 2017, in addition to logging 12 catches for 180 yards and a touchdown. Erickson stands to resume his role as Cincinnati's top return man this season, but could see less work in three-wideout sets with John Ross posed for increased snaps.
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