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Fantasy football slow starts: Why Kyle Pitts can still be this year's Mark Andrews

Here's why fantasy managers should expect more catches like this from Kyle Pitts. ERIK S LESSER/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Tom Brady.

Derrick Henry.

Kyle Pitts.

It happens every fantasy football season. Someone performs beneath expectations, and while the players above aren't the only three to have done so this year, they're certainly three of the most-mentioned to have underperformed.

But simply because a big-name player -- in this case, three selected among the top 65 overall in ESPN leagues on average -- struggles early, that doesn't mean he's condemned to a season-long funk. Two weeks, while technically 11.1% of the entire season, remains a precariously small sample size from which to judge, and history gives this quartet (as well as other underperformers) a realistic chance at a full value rebound from this point forward, if not an improvement on what you might have expected.

Taking just the past five NFL seasons (and two slightly earlier for repeat instances), the following players were highly sought-after picks on draft day who struggled in the opening weeks, only to fully recapture their value from this stage of the season forward. Each, in his own way, might serve encouraging evidence not to give up on your slow-starting, hefty draft capital selections just yet.

Mark Andrews, 2021
No. 45 overall pick in ADP, 43.3 PPR fantasy points through four weeks, 257.8 in his final 13 games for a No. 1 positional finish.

His progression serves a fine comparison point to Pitts, other than the clear differences between their respective supporting casts, and it's critical to point out that