The 2012 fantasy football off-season has begun. You have to pay close attention to everything in order to stay on top of your dynasty league. For most of us, we do well to steal some time away from our families and jobs to watch the games on Sunday. It becomes difficult to monitor the daily happenings around the league and even more demanding to process how that news affects your dynasty team.
That’s why we’re here!
Each week there are many news items that are important and helpful in the day-to-day managing of your fantasy team, yet have little affect on the dynasty value of players. Because of this, I will not be mentioning those here.
Here is a quick look at the events of the past week and how they impact the players on your team:
Maurice Jones-Drew, RB JAX
To the surprise of no one, the Jaguars placed running back Maurice Jones-Drew on the injured reserve list before the team’s final game. It had been evident for a while that he would not play anymore this season, so it is baffling what took so long. Making the situation even worse, the team announced that their starting running back would have to undergo foot surgery and he would be out of action until May. While he should be back to full strength by training camp, this looks like another poor decision by the Jaguars brass. Jones-Drew’s value has been holding steady despite not playing in weeks. He can likely be had in the third or fourth round of startup drafts this off-season.
Dustin Keller, TE NYJ
Free agent tight end Dustin Keller spoke out this week, telling reporters he did not want to be franchised by the Jets this off-season. Keller endured the worst statistical season of his career, thanks to the eight games he missed due to a hamstring injury. In the half of the season he played, Keller managed 28 catches for 317 yards and two scores as one of the focal points of the Jets offense. Keller offers his quarterback a big receiving target and has some upside in the right offense. There has been little discussion regarding the possibility of him leaving the team, though he is an unrestricted free agent.
Joseph Morgan, WR NO
Saints wide receiver Joseph Morgan, who averaged a ridiculous 38 yards per catch this season, will play a larger role for the team in 2013, according to offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael. Quarterback Drew Brees has never been afraid to spread the ball around and Morgan has shown a propensity for the big play on a deep pass. Add to that the fact that Devery Henderson will be a free agent this offseason and it is easy to see a larger role for Morgan next season. Morgan is still relatively inexpensive in dynasty formats, and may even be on the waiver wire in some leagues. He is the perfect candidate to stash as we see how this off-season develops.
Marvin Jones, WR CIN
Bengals rookie wide receiver Marvin Jones posted another solid outing in week seventeen, catching five balls for 45 yards and a touchdown, the first of his career. Jones saw his playing time really increase with the injury to fellow rookie Mohamed Sanu and he finished the season with just over 200 receiving yards. Although Jones flashed some great ability when given a chance this season, he will likely enter 2013 as the fourth option in the Bengals passing offense, behind AJ Green, Sanu and tight end Jermaine Gresham. This role obviously limits his upside.
Terrelle Pryor, QB OAK
Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor earned his first career start in week seventeen versus the San Diego Chargers. Pryor threw for only 150 yards, but did manage two passing touchdowns. He added nearly fifty rushing yards and another score on the ground. It is unclear what direction the Raiders will go at quarterback in 2013, but it would be a shock if they handed the job to Pryor. For the offseason, he is worth stashing, but keep your eye on the waiver wire and don’t be afraid to drop him for a better option.
DuJuan Harris, RB GB
Packers running back DuJuan Harris enjoyed the best game of his career in week seventeen, rushing for 70 yards and gaining another 17 yards on receptions. The Packers have a huge gap to fill at the running back position and Harris is doing his best to earn a share of that role for 2013. Harris, just 24, could have some rising off-season value if he continues to play well through the Packers playoff run. If he is available, he is certainly worth a roster spot in most dynasty formats.
Jake Locker, QB TEN
Titans quarterback Jake Locker will undergo shoulder surgery and miss much of the off-season as he recovers. The surgery is intended to repair the damage from the multiple dislocations of his non-throwing shoulder. Locker struggled this year, although it is unclear if the injury played a major role in that disappointing play. With two electric playmakers at wide receiver in Kenny Britt and Kendall Wright, expectation will again be high for Locker and the Tennessee offense in 2013. After his poor year, Locker could be a decent buy low candidate this off-season.
Ryan Mallett, QB NE
That didn’t take long. Even though the Patriots season is not even over, there are already trade rumors involving backup quarterback Ryan Mallett. Last offseason, there were rumors that the team would deal one of either Mallett or fellow backup Brian Hoyer, who was released instead. Now, with so many teams lacking a quality starting quarterback, the rumors are surfacing again. Specifically, ESPN’s John Clayton mentioned Cleveland as a possible destination for Mallett. In the meantime, be sure Mallett is not on your waiver wire. If he is moved, he gains instant value thanks to his big arm and a potential starting job being handed to him.
David Wilson, RB NYG
New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese said this week that rookie running back David Wilson could carry the load for the team in 2013. And so begins an offseason full of speculation and “coach speak.” I have said before the challenge for fantasy owners during the off-season is to wade through the talk and decide what is real. Maybe this comment is designed to motivate Wilson to work on his pass protection and ball control, or maybe it’s the beginning of a long good bye to starter Ahmad Bradshaw. Either way, Wilson makes a great candidate to buy this off-season. He is already being drafted in the fourth round of startup drafts, so the value is steep.
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