The 2013 fantasy football season is over, but the dynasty season is just beginning. As you prepare for next season, it’s more important than ever to stay on top of the news. You have to pay close attention to everything 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!
Here is a quick look at the events of the past week and how they impact the players on your team.
Dennis Pitta, TE BAL
The Baltimore Ravens and Dennis Pitta agreed to a five-year contract extension. There was never any doubt Pitta would be back with the Ravens, though it appeared as if the team might have to use their franchise tag to assure that happened. Instead, Pitta will spend the next five years alongside Joe Flacco and company. The Ravens offense struggled all around last year with the injury to Pitta and the running game never getting on track. Look for the Ravens to improve in 2014 with a healthy Pitta and a new wide receiver addition expected later in the off-season. Pitta will maintain his status as a mid-range TE1 in dynasty leagues.
Jimmy Graham, TE NO
The Saints and tight end Jimmy Graham were not able to come to a similar agreement on a long-term deal, so instead the team chose Graham as their franchise player. Though he was tagged as a tight end, Graham and his representatives plan to fight the label in hopes of having Graham paid as a wide receiver due to the percentage of time he spent split out wide. In the meantime, it appears as if both sides will also continue working on a long-term contract extension while they’re not battling over Graham’s position designation.
Jeremy Maclin, WR PHI
The Philadelphia Eagles re-signed wide receiver Jeremy Maclin to a one-year deal, which will pay him $5.5 million. After missing the 2013 season due to a torn ACL, most assumed Maclin would hit the open market for the first time in his career. Instead, he chose to stay with the Eagles for one more season. It’s likely Maclin wants to prove he is healthy and can still be a contributor in hopes of a big payday a year from now. With fellow wide receiver Riley Cooper also remaining with the team, the players could cancel each other out, hurting the value of all involved, including veteran DeSean Jackson.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE FA
We’ve known since the NFL Combine that incoming rookie tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins, formerly of Washington, had suffered a stress fracture in his foot. This week, Seferian-Jenkins had surgery on the foot, which will keep him out of action for the next eight weeks – that likely means he won’t be able to work out for any teams prior to the NFL Draft. He should be a steal for dynasty owners in the late second round of rookie drafts.
Anquan Boldin, WR SF
Wide receiver Anquan Boldin agreed to a two-year deal with the San Francisco 49ers. Boldin led the team in receiving in 2013, his first year with the team following his tenure in Baltimore. With Michael Crabtree expected to be fully healthy, Boldin moves back to a complimentary role, one that he has excelled at in the past. Boldin has little dynasty value due to his age, but could be a cheap option for teams needing some wide receiver help.
Giovani Bernard, RB CIN
A Bengals beat writer this week shared his opinion and expectation that sophomore running back Giovani Bernard could near 300 touches in 2014 – that’s news to the ears of Bernard owners. His value has already been steadily increasing due to the lack of quality fantasy starting backs. Expect his value to continue to climb, even though many already consider him a top five dynasty running back.
Jake Locker, QB TEN
It was reported this week that Titans quarterback Jake Locker is still in a walking boot and is not expected to ditch it for a few more weeks. Locker is not close to returning to the practice field, though the team doesn’t really have any other options to challenge Locker for the starting quarterback position. The 2014 season could be his last shot to claim the job on a long-term basis. He has very little dynasty value outside of two quarterback leagues.
Bobby Rainey, RB TB
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers re-signed running back Bobby Rainey to a one-year deal. Rainey had some success following the season ending injury to starter Doug Martin and it appears he is in prime position to be the top reserve in the Bucs’ backfield next season. Rainey only has handcuff value, especially since he will still need to compete with the equally impressive Mike James for snaps and touches.
Pierre Thomas, RB NO
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported this week that the New Orleans Saints are potentially looking to trade running backs Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles, along with wide receiver Lance Moore. The Saints are dealing with salary cap issues, especially when it comes to the potential long-term deal for tight end Jimmy Graham. The Saints’ high powered offense is one of the best case scenarios for any skill player, so if any of these three players are dealt, it would negatively impact their dynasty value, which is already low.
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