Pay Attention to All Players
The re-draft stock market is much more volatile than any market in fantasy football. It is a week-to-week up-and-down roller coaster that is determined by match-ups, injuries, hold-outs, and more. Notably, if a top notch running back has a sprained ankle in a dynasty format, you may lose some value for a couple of games. But barring real structural damage, that player’s value is still high. In a re-draft, if that player misses 4 games, then you have lost 25% of that season’s production. Also, a fantasy player must pay attention to not only the skill players they drafted, but the teammates around him! There have been times when three starting offensive linemen have been injured, and against a stout defense, that spells trouble! With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the stock movement of a few players as we head deeper into the pre-season.
- Tony Pollard – Pollard’s value rises more with each passing day that the Cowboys are without Ezekiel Elliott. Take note of the fact that the Cowboys pulled him after just one series with the Dak Prescott group in their first pre-season game. This could be a sign that things aren’t looking promising in the Elliott saga. Jerry Jones has admitted “We’ve seen him do it, we know he’s capable”, which may not be a complete endorsement, but certainly indicating he is their focus right now. Stay tuned to this hold-out, because it could mean drafting a full time player or just a bench warmer.
- James Washington – The excitement early on was with the pickup of Donte Moncrief in the off-season. While Moncrief adds a solid veteran to the Steelers’ offense, James Washington has no-so-quietly been showing off his talent in camp and the pre-season. Now, I don’t like to get over-hyped in pre-season, but he had flashes last year as well. He seems to be maturing quickly and in my opinion, this offense is still lethal. Washington should definitely be on your radar if your draft is coming up soon!
- Dede Westbrook – Westbrook is coming off a 66/717/5 campaign in 2018. On the surface, that isn’t a lot to get excited about. But delving deeper you find that Blake Bortles is gone. Like Nick Foles or not, he is an instant upgrade from Bortles. Couple this with the fact that Marquise Lee had a devastating ACL tear last year and most likely will not be ready for Week 1. Westbrook is the clear WR1 on a team that will be passing more. Dede Westbrook is a breakout candidate this year and you shouldn’t let the woes of the Jags’ past offenses prevent you from drafting him.
- Antonio Brown – What really needs to be said about this situation? Brown is threatening to quit football if he can’t wear his old helmet? I recommend staying away from this guy no matter what. The price you would have to pay is going to be too high, considering his volatile nature. Brown is a great talent, but you know the old saying: A million dollar talent with two quarters between his ears.
- Melvin Gordon – This holdout is very concerning. Gordon has a very capable backup in Austin Ekeler. Unfortunately for Gordon, he is a very desirable talent, but the offense is not running through him. Phillip Rivers is the main cog in this machine. Take note: Gordon as the clear RB1 on the Chargers, only had 417 more total yards than Ekeler in 2018. Ekeler had almost 1,000 total yards and 6 TDs. He can run, catch and score. The Chargers are NOT out of contention without their RB1 as such other teams might be (i.e. Cowboys, Jets, Panthers).
- Jordan Howard – Howard was productive in Chicago, but sent packing to Philadelphia in the off-season. Seemingly, he doesn’t have the explosiveness that was expected, (YPC have declined each of his three years from 5.2 to 3.7) and hence he has become a real RBBC candidate. The Eagles look like they have a real mix of backs with Howard, rookie Miles Sanders, Corey Clement, Darren Sproles, and more. Howard will get his goal line chances, but to rely on him as a RB2, doesn’t look nearly as possible as when he was first traded. Conversely, don’t avoid him, but don’t over pay.
This is just scratching the surface of why to keep tabs on players. Injury, holdouts, poor performance, and more all play into a player’s stock value in Re-draft formats. There will be more to come, so stay tuned. Remember, Re-draft isn’t long term investment. It is for one year only and week to week! A great (or poor) previous year doesn’t mean the same this year. In fact, week to week matchups, a questionable designation or a suspension can mean significant decreases in your fantasy team’s production. So pay attention to the stock market and buy or sell accordingly.
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