The NFL might only be through Week 1, but that gave us enough time to have plenty of overreactions for the fantasy football season.
Still, it is only one week and while you don’t want to have too many knee-jerk reactions because of one good or bad week, it's also important to keep an eye on certain players.
For instance, Eagles players — specifically Carson Wentz and the running backs — might be in for a long year thanks to their terrible offensive line that got absolutely owned by the Washington Football Team. In Los Angeles, maybe Cam Akers isn’t going to be the top back as Malcolm Brown appears to have the hotter hand at the moment in a committee backfield.
Whatever the situations might be for your team, it's important to try and figure out what player’s stocks are on the rise and which are on the decline. Remember: selling high and buying low is the name of the game.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
This might be a tough trade to land but it's one that will certainly be worth it as the season goes along. The Kansas City Chiefs have the league’s best offense and the addition of Edwards-Helaire is only making it worse for opposing defenses.
It's clear that this is Edwards-Helaire’s backfield as he had 25 rushes while Darrel Williams had just seven. Rushing for 138 yards in his NFL debut, Edwards-Helaire showed he is capable of handling the load as the lead back. In an offense that is so pass-heavy, Edwards-Helaire will get a lot of great opportunities as defenses focus on the pass first. Likely the Rookie of the Year on offense, CEH could finish the year as a top-five running back.
Nyheim Hines, RB, Indianapolis Colts
The Indianapolis Colts’ backfield was looking like an oversaturated one before the season started. Now, Marlon Mack is out for the season with a torn Achilles and it appears that Hines and Jonathan Taylor will be sharing the backfield. Both Hines and Taylor caught all 14 targets they received (eight for Taylor, six for Hines). This shows that both will be featured heavily in the pass offense as well.
Taylor got two more rush attempts than Hines but only averaged 2.4 yards per carry to Hines’ 4.0. This should be a 50/50 backfield from here on out in both running and passing situations. Both backs are worth rostering but Hines is the one that will have a smaller price (especially in dynasty or keeper leagues).
Calvin Ridley, WR, Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons didn’t have a very good Week 1 performance thanks to their defense. Their offense, however, was actually pretty, pretty, pretty good. Two costly turnovers plus a missed extra point had the Falcons chasing points the entire game. Still, the offense showed its potential as Matt Ryan threw for 450 yards.
The interesting stat of the game was that Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage all had nine receptions on 12 targets. With that defense, the Falcons are going to need to score a lot of points this season and it appears they have no problem spreading the ball around to these three skilled receivers. The cost for Jones is too high but Ridley could be bought for the right price. Also, picking Gage up off of waivers this week would be a smart move as well for bye week and injury scenarios.
Jamison Crowder, WR, New York Jets
Crowder has been a high-volume fantasy football player for years. Still, he is overlooked every year and is a mid-late round pick year after year. One of the most underrated receivers in the NFL, Crowder is a solid WR1 in New York with a young quarterback who should only get better as the season goes along.
Crowder saw 13 targets in Week 1 and hauled in seven of them for 115 yards and a touchdown. Chris Herndon was second with seven targets and nobody else had more than five. It's clear Crowder is the equivalent of a bell-cow running back in this offense. Keep in mind, Crowder did this against one of the league’s best defenses in Buffalo. He should be in line for a big season in New York.
Will Fuller, WR, Houston Texans
DeAndre Hopkins is gone and the Texans need someone to step up and be their top target. That man is none other than Fuller. Fuller has always been a solid receiving option when he is on the field. While he is of course no Hopkins, he is still a talented receiver.
Fuller saw 10 targets against the Chiefs last Thursday. The next highest on the team was Brandin Cooks with five. Deshaun Watson will need to take over if they want to make a playoff run this season. To do so, he will need a reliable receiver to go to each week. Fuller is the only one on this Texans’ team capable of being his reliable target. Expect career-high numbers from Fuller if he can stay on the field for 16 games.
Potential Trade Candidates: A.J. Green, Julian Edelman, Michael Gallup
Robby Anderson, WR, Carolina Panthers
Like Jamison Crowder, Robby Anderson has always been a reliable target wherever he has played. Teddy Bridgewater isn’t exactly Drew Brees so we won’t see huge numbers in the Carolina passing attack this year. When you have Christian McCaffrey on your team, most of your offense will flow through him. Still, Anderson is a receiver that is worth adding to your team.
D.J. Moore is the WR1 in Carolina but Anderson could end up with the better statistical season. Bridgewater did well to spread the ball around (nine targets for Moore and eight for both Anderson and Curtis Samuel). Anderson, however, had 115 receiving yards while the next highest (Moore) had just 54. Anderson scored the lone receiving touchdown as well. Yards after catch (YAC) has always been a specialty of Robbie Anderson so big chunk plays will be a regular occurrence. Anderson could be a sneaky-good Flex/WR4 that can step up in big bye week situations.
Potential Trade Candidates: Sterling Shepard, Brandin Cooks, Preston Williams
Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens
After Travis Kelce and George Kittle, the fantasy value for tight ends drops off a bit. However, at the next tier is Mark Andrews. The Ravens tight end had an excellent fantasy season last season and he is off to a great start in 2020 as well. In a Ravens offense that features plenty of volume, Andrews is the biggest receiving beneficiary. Jackson has shown that he relies on Andrews in big situations, especially in the red zone.
If you have Kelce or Kittle, you are fine. If not, Andrews is a guy you should be trying to acquire. Trading for another tight end won’t be enough as you will likely have to deal some decent flex candidates. Still, if you can afford to trade off a decent RB/WR and need help in the TE spot, Andrews is your best option. A strong tight end is a big advantage over your opponent. So if you don’t have one of the “Big Two”, Andrews isn’t a bad third option.
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