PLAYERS TO TRADE FOR
Lamar Jackson (Bal) — He made some great throws in Week 3, and were it not for Marquise Brown’s three drops (worth 35.6 FP), Lamar lost out on a whopping 17.8 FP, which obviously would have put him at QB1 for the week (he was only QB14). Hollywood needs to be more consistent with his hands, but the guy’s been getting open a ton, and impressive rookie Rashod Bateman is returning to practice this week with an eye on a Week 4 return. Even Sammy Watkins is contributing, and their lack of solid running game, while likely to hurt Lamar at times, should mean more of a dependence on Jackson’s arm and legs, so if he can hold up (contract year), he could start going ballistic.
Joe Mixon (Cin) — I’m a little worried about his lack of targets the last two weeks (only 3 and 2/6 receiving), but Mixon has now seen at least 19 opportunities (carries + targets) in nine-straight games for an average of 24.3 per game. He has a nice three-game run starting now against Jax, GB, and Det, and the last time he played the Jaguars in Week 4 last year, Mixon put up 36 FP, so his value may soar after this week. He’s only the RB35 the last two weeks with 9.3 FP, so it’s time to make the Mixon owner an offer.
Jonathan Taylor (Ind) — Here we go again with Taylor, who lived in this article for two months last year - and then finished as the RB3 the final six weeks of the season. Once again, HC Frank Reich’s inability to commit to their best back, and to use Nyheim Hines in obvious passing situations exclusively, is hurting Taylor. One thing that should help is them moving on from Marlon Mack, who will likely be traded in the coming weeks. That at least removes another viable option from the mix, which does help. They are a mess, but their schedule overall isn’t that bad, and Taylor is damn near a lock to bounce back and start delivering. His production may not be up to his 2020 standards, but his value will rise.
Zack Moss (Buf) — I had Moss on my list of targets all summer, and while I knew he wasn’t a sexy pick, I thought the possible ROI at around 100 overall was fairly appealing. Turns out it was, and Moss took over as the Bills No. 1 back against Washington. He played on 44 snaps to Devin Singletary’s 34, and he even out targeted and out-produced Singletary with 3 targets and 3/31/1. Singletary had only 2 targets and 1 catch for 0 yards. The Bills do need to have more balance than they did last year, which is why I liked Moss in the first place, and Week 3 was encouraging. I can’t say it’s a lock that will continue with Moss, but that was my expectation all off-season.
Antonio Brown (TB) — Think about where his value was two weeks ago, coming off a huge game in the opener. He had one bad game and missed Week 3 on the covid list, so things have gone perfectly for him since that big game in the opener. Perfectly in terms of his value taking a hit.
LISTED HERE LAST WEEK, BUT STILL GOOD BUY-LOW GUYS:
Joe Burrow (Cin) — He’s still not running yet, and maybe he won’t all season, but he’s clearly getting better and better as the weeks progress, and he already has 4 TD passes to his boy Ja’Marr Chase. He also has a nice string of games starting in Week 4: vs. Jax, vs. GB, at Det, at Bal, vs. Cle, and at LV.
Brandon Aiyuk (SF) — Aiyuk’s value rose in Week 3, but it’s hardly peaking, so trading for him now could still be a great move if he does even remotely well as he’s capable of doing. Aiyuk was back to a full-time role in Week 3 as he ran a route on 44-of-48 dropbacks.
Robert Woods (LAR) — At this point, regression has to happen for Woods, so I’m listing him again. I will continue to list him until he starts producing, which he will. His usage this year may cap his upside, but he’s still a good buy-low guy.
Darnell Mooney (Chi) — All the vibes on this guy have been great all off-season and in training camp — and the vibes were even decent leading up to Week 3. We all know what happened in Week 3, which probably will prompt many people to cut him this week. That’s understandable, but in deeper leagues, he’s a buy-low, for sure. Things can only get better for Mooney and the Bears, and I mean that quite literally.
Jakobi Meyers (NE) — He was here last week, and he finally had a big catch day, but with James White out a while, if not the rest of the season, Meyer’s value hasn’t peaked, far from it.
Laviska Shenault (Jax) — Shenault does have solid usage, and they do need him as an offensive weapon, so the arrow should be pointing up soon for him.
Michael Thomas (NO) — Some risk here, but holy crap do they need him. Thomas may only need to miss the next two games, since his PUP stint is by weeks, not games. There’s a chance he’s traded because he’s disgruntled, but if so he’ll be traded to a good team with a viable QB, or else why bother?
George Kittle (SF) — He’s scoring this week, people.
OTHER PLAYERS I’D BE WILLING TO TRADE FOR NOW BEFORE VALUE GOES DOWN:
PLAYERS TO TRADE
Russell Wilson (Sea) — He’s hardly a “must-sell,” but I would not be against moving him if you had another good option because the vibes aren’t great. The defense is not good so far, and we saw last week when Tyler Lockett went down that they are an injury away from having a really lame receiving corps. Wilson is completing 73% of his passes so far for 10.2 YPA, which isn’t sustainable in this so-so offense. Wilson and the Seahawks also have some tough matchups coming up against SF, LAR, Pit, and NO.
Derek Carr (LV) — There was a time when I was a huge Carr guy, so I’m not that surprised he’s balling, especially since he’s reached a serious comfort level in Jon Gruden’s offense. He’s also seeing nice progress with young WRs Hunter Renfrow, Henry Ruggs and Bryan Edwards, so hang on to Carr if you need him, especially in a 2-QB league. They also have a nice schedule. But Carr is also maddening with his inconsistencies in this run-heavy offense, so I would not want to have to make tough lineup decisions with him weekly. Perhaps he turns a corner and balls out all year, but we do have five full seasons of up-and-down production for fantasy to consider from 2016-2020, which makes me inclined to move him if I can get max value now, even in a possible breakout season.
Sam Darnold (Car) — Darnold so far with the Panthers is rolling with a 68% completion rate, a fat 8.3 YPA, and a strong 99 passer rating, and we’re proud of him. But 65% of his snaps have come against the Jets and Texans, so his matchups have been easier. His upcoming schedule is still favorable overall, but as the sample size grows, his efficiency will likely drop, so selling high now may not be a bad idea.
DJ Chark (Jax) — He’s made a few big plays, two of them for TDs. Otherwise? Nothing. The man is rolling with a 31.8% catch rate. Chark is tied for the league lead in targets of 15 or more air yards (12) – yet he’s caught only 5 of those targets have been catchable, so it’s not all his fault.
Mecole Hardman (KC) — I wanted to like him this year, but it’s hard, man. They are clearly underwhelmed with him in KC just like his fantasy managers are, and Josh Gordon has been signed to the practice squad. Gordon’s been a disaster himself, but not in KC, and Hardman, again, has been seriously underwhelming. If Gordon’s around on the active roster, Hardman is completely unreliable.
Mike Gesicki (Mia) — He had a huge game in Week 3 with 10 catches on 12 targets, but he looked like a league-loser the first two weeks with 9 targets total and only 3/41. If you can get anything for him coming off a big game, you’re likely better off discarding him.