Free Agents: Fantasy Impact

With NFL Free Agency looming I decided to take a look at 5 guys who’s fantasy value will be impacted by Free Agency. Some players are looking to get their shot at being “the guy” while others are looking to solidify what others think they know and some are looking for fresh starts to capture previous success.

Eric Decker

Eric Decker hits the market looking for his first big contract extension this off season. Fantasy owners would prefer Decker stay in Denver, where he has vaulted into an elite receiver on the other end of Peyton Manning passes. Some question if Decker has simply emerged or if the Peyton Manning effect is creating a haze over his numbers. If you watched Decker at the University of Minnesota you saw the tremendous potential and massive numbers. There are a few potential suitors for Decker’s services and one that makes a ton of sense. As a fantasy owner I love the sound of Decker landing in Indy, Peyton’s former home with his successor Andrew Luck. Decker would be able to transition from one elite passer to another with massive long term potential. This acquisition would not only boost Lucks fantasy potential but T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne as well. Both would see more single coverage .  Another possible landing spot is Jacksonville, while not nearly as exciting, still has fantasy potential joining Cecil Shorts and Justin Blackmon to create a formidable receiving core. If the Jags add a QB via the draft they could be on their way. Jacksonville isn’t as far away as their perceived to be.

Potential homes: Colts, Jaguars, Raiders, Vikings, Redskins


Ben Tate

Is it finally the year where Ben Tate gets the full workload and shows his full potential? All signs point to this being the case. The biggest rumor for his potential destination is Cleveland. The Browns would want to solidly their offensive line and retain center Alex Mack to create lanes for Tate to utilize. The acquisition of Tate should allow Josh Gordon get better looks with the defense forced to at least respect the threat of the run. The a Dolphins are also potential suitors for Tate’s services. This is a typical Dolphin move to create a timeshare and under utilize both Tate and current starter Lamar Miller. While I do see the Dolphins bringing in another running back I think Tate wants a spot where the rush attack is all his.

Potential homes: Browns, Dolphins, Cardinals

Maurice Jones-Drew

While MJD has been injury riddled and a shell of his former self the past 2 seasons. In the not too distant past Maurice Jones-Drew was a perennial top 3 pick and competed for best running back in fantasy. While it may be the case the Jones-Drew is done, the right situation could reignite his spark and could provide tremendous value for fantasy owners. A return to his hometown Oakland Raiders who have money to spend seems realistic but not the most enticing for fantasy owners. A feature role on the Giants would be very intriguing and could Eli rebound from last season as well.

Potential homes: Raiders, Giants, Cardinals, Dolphins

Knowshon Moreno

Knowshon Moreno finally put it all together in Denver last season putting up career numbers across the board. Now Moreno enters free agency and the return to Denver seems highly unlikely with Montee ball and Ronnie Hilman much cheaper alternatives ready to assume the load. While there is no team the scream ideal fit there is a need for a quality back in Arizona, Cleveland, Oakland, Jacksonville, Miami and Tennessee. We shall see who’s ready to invest in Moreno.

Possible homes: Arizona, Cleveland, Jacksonville

Hakeem Nicks

Hakeem Nicks has worn out his welcome in New York with the Giants at least, and will be seeking employment elsewhere. While Nicks hasn’t been as productive the last couple seasons, there’s always a market for a big physical receiver. Staying in New York only dawning Jet green seems like a real possibility. The Jets will be in the market to give their second year quarterback, Geno Smith targets. Nicks would be an instant upgrade. The Carolina Panthers seem like the frontrunner for Nicks and his services. Not only would this be a homecoming for Nicks who started at the University of North Carolina but it would give Cam Newton a big target opposite Steve Smith. Nicks could become fantasy relevant once again and could have a big touchdown season for the Panthers.

Possible homes: Carolina, New York Jets, Pittsburgh, Baltimore

As the free agent pieces fall into place owners will have a better idea of the future potential. There is some tremendous value to be had for teams if the price is right and fantasy owners could be beneficiaries of the moves as well.




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