5 Players to Buy in Dynasty Fantasy Football
Even though it's been just a month since the Super Bowl, I think it's time to wake up your dynasty fantasy football league with a few trade offers.
With free agency right around the corner and the NFL Draft not too far down the road, situations are about to change for a lot of guys around the league. That makes this an interesting time to make moves as the market tends to be a little more volatile and unpredictable than usual until the NFL Draft takes place.
Of course, that can work against you if you dealt for, say, Damien Williams at this time a year ago and then watched the Kansas City Chiefs draft Clyde Edwards-Helaire in the first round. But it can go the other way, too, if you had traded for someone like Marvin Jones, whose team didn't make any notable additions at receiver last offseason, paving the way for him to have a nice 2020.
With that in mind, here are some players I'm targeting right now in my dynasty leagues.
All average draft position (ADP) data comes from DynastyLeagueFootball.com.
Joe Mixon, RB, Bengals
Joe Mixon's stock has really taken a hit over the past 12 months. At this time a year ago, Mixon sat 12th overall (RB7) in ADP, so he's fallen almost two full rounds. Why? Because he got hurt last year?
Almost everything about Mixon's situation with the Cincinnati Bengals is trending up as long as Joe Burrow gets healthy. Burrow looked every bit the part of a franchise stud as a rookie prior to getting injured, and he should help elevate the fantasy outlook for everyone on the Bengals' offense. Cincy's offensive line is bad -- second-worst, per PFF -- but that's something the Bengals will surely be addressing this offseason via the draft and/or free agency.
By PPR points per game, Mixon was the RB11 in 2020, so he performed well in the six games he played. He also got fed, seeing at least 20 opportunities (carries plus targets) in all six games. He is signed through 2024 with fairly significant dead-cap hits for this upcoming season and the next, so he should be Cincinnati's locked-in starter for at least two more years.
All in all, I think there's a lot to love about Mixon at his current ADP, and he's a guy I'll be pursuing aggressively this offseason.
Marquise Brown, WR, Ravens
ADP: 88th Overall (WR43)
Through his first 10 games in 2020, Marquise Brown was stinking up the joint. In that span, he had just two games of 80-plus yards along with a mere two scores. That wound up being the ideal time to trade for him, because he got hot down the stretch.
Across his last eight games, including two postseason affairs, Brown had four outings of 80-plus yards and scored six times. He really stepped up in the playoffs, going for 109 and 87 yards in two games.
Brown's usage numbers were nice as he accounted for 38% of the Baltimore Ravens' air yards, per AirYards.com. His target share over his final six regular-season games was 34%. While the Ravens will likely add a wideout this offseason, Brown's elite wheels and talent should keep him heavily involved, and the addition of another playmaker alongside Brown and Mark Andrews could wind up helping Hollywood see more favorable coverage. Oh, and there's the chance Lamar Jackson -- who was in his age-23 campaign last year -- improves as a passer.
Despite Brown's play over the second half of 2020, his ADP now is lower than it was in November (68th overall, WR36), so the 2019 first-rounder is still a bit of a buy-low candidate.
Chase Edmonds, RB, Cardinals
ADP: 118th Overall (RB39)
Chase Edmonds' 2020 outlook hinges a lot on whether or not the Arizona Cardinals bring back unrestricted free agent Kenyan Drake. But with Edmonds' ADP barely inside the top-40 running backs, I am willing to roll the dice on Arizona letting Drake walk (and not taking a back with a high pick in the draft).
Edmonds clearly has pass-game chops. He got a whopping 67 targets last year, the fifth-most among all running backs. That role is valuable in the Cards' fast-paced offense, one that ran the third-most plays per game last campaign. It would be a little naive to assume Edmonds would jump into a workhorse role sans Drake -- even though the team has said they're comfortable with him as their primary back -- but if he got even just a mild uptick in carries into addition to his usual pass-game volume, Edmonds would have a great shot at having a nice fantasy output in 2021.
And even if Drake comes back (or Arizona brings in another running back), Edmonds would still have value as a pass-catcher and an elite handcuff. Heck, Edmonds was the PPR RB25 last year, so he's a fine situational flex play or bye-week fill-in even as the number-two guy.
There isn't too much downside in acquiring Edmonds, and there's quite a bit of upside.
Bryan Edwards, WR, Raiders
ADP: 155th Overall (WR73)
It's definitely concerning when a player does very little as a rookie, and Bryan Edwards didn't do a whole lot last year, totaling 11 catches for 193 yards and a score. But a quiet rookie year isn't a death sentence, and I'm still intrigued by Edwards' combination of situation, size and college production.
Edwards was a really interesting prospect coming into the league. According to PlayerProfiler, Edwards' breakout age (99th percentile) and college dominator rating (94th percentile) were top-shelf marks. At 6-foot-3, 212 pounds, he has great size to go along with his enticing college résumé. And the situation seems dope, too, as the Las Vegas Raiders' receiver depth chart is pretty blah even if free agent Nelson Agholor re-signs.
Agholor signing elsewhere would leave a lot of target volume up for grabs -- 82 targets to be exact -- but Edwards and fellow rookie Henry Ruggs should both have a chance to do more in their second seasons regardless of Agholor's situation.
Valued outside the top 150 players, Edwards is a lottery ticket I'll be trying to land this offseason.
Tarik Cohen, RB, Bears
ADP: 170th Overall (RB53)
Similar to what we covered with Mixon, Tarik Cohen's ADP has dropped a significant amount, and it likely has to do with him missing most of 2020 due to injury. A year ago, Cohen's ADP checked in 112th overall (RB37), and his stock has plummeted since then.
But in PPR formats, Cohen should still be a handy asset to have. This is a dude with 53, 71 and 79 catches in his first three seasons, and he's signed with the Chicago Bears through 2023, although he can be cut with not-too-harsh dead-cap charges after 2021. Cohen has ridden his receiving prowess to PPR finishes of RB11 in 2018 and RB27 in 2019.
With David Montgomery in town, Cohen isn't going to sniff something like his RB11 campaign, especially with Montgomery showing good receiving skills in Cohen's absence this past year, but with Cohen's value where it is, he doesn't need to be anything more than a solid depth piece and bye-week fill-in to be worth acquiring. I'll gladly take the discount on one of the league's better pass-catching running backs.