Golden Tate was one of the first significant wide receivers to sign during free agency as he inked a five-year, $31 million contract with the Lions that includes $13.25 million guaranteed. Tate had considered a hometown discount to stay with the Seahawks, but instead found the offer from Detroit too enticing to pass up. He’ll team up with Calvin Johnson and give the Lions the long awaited second option they’ve been desperately looking for over the past few years. Let’s examine the players involved and assess how their dynasty values may have changed after this signing.
Golden Tate, WR DET
Tate enjoyed his best year as a pro last season with 64 catches, 898 yards and five touchdowns. In his four years with Seattle, he posted a total of 165 catches for 2,195 yards and 15 touchdowns. Tate has never really lived up to his pedigree, but he’s been a dependable performer on a run first team – that all changes now. Matt Stafford will love Tate’s after the catch ability. He’s dynamic with the ball in his hands and should be just what the Lions have needed for so long opposite Megatron.
It would be a surprise to nobody to see Tate set career highs in all categories next season. Calvin Johnson will still demand double and triple coverage, leaving Tate one-on-one virtually every Sunday. Stafford is certainly not shy about throwing the football and Tate will almost certainly get more than 100 targets next season. Tate is currently the WR65 in our latest ADP and that will undoubtedly trend upward with this news.
Free agency is really interesting. With all the talk of Eric Decker possibly losing value going from a WR2 in Denver to a WR1 elsewhere, here we likely have a WR1 in Seattle gaining value by becoming the WR2 in Detroit.
Matt Stafford, QB DET
You have to be happy for Stafford. He’s had his fair share of players attempt to take that spot across from Johnson, including Nate Burleson and Ryan Broyles, but it just hasn’t worked out. He’ll make his share of mistakes and force a large number of throws, but Stafford is still an underrated performer in dynasty leagues and this move should do nothing but help him.
Calvin Johnson, WR DET
If you think Tate eats into any part of his production, I think you’re sorely mistaken. Johnson will get his, no matter who is on the field.
Russell Wilson, QB SEA
The champs were hoping to get Tate back, but it just didn’t work out financially. With Sidney Rice and Golden Tate both gone, the Seahawks are in the market for a receiver or two via free agency or the draft. The addition of Jermichael Finley would be great, but you have to figure the Seahawks will be looking at the likes of Decker, James Jones, Hakeem Nicks and the whole slew of star studded rookie receivers scheduled to come out. If the Seahawks fail in their quest to upgrade their corps, this could spell some trouble for Wilson.
Depending on what their next move may be, the values of Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse just took a nice little bump up. You figure Percy Harvin (much like Johnson) will get his fair share of plays when healthy, but at the moment, Baldwin and Kearse look to be key players in the Seahawks offense next season.
The sleeper appeal of Kris Durham, Kevin Ogletree, Corey Fuller, Jeremy Ross or any of the others takes a sizable hit. I genuinely feel bad for Ryan Broyles as well.
A lot of mock drafts had the Lions taking a receiver like Mike Evans at #10 overall in the 2014 NFL Draft, but this likely throws a bucket of cold water on that notion. They could still use some more talent at the position, but the sense of urgency is tempered with the addition of Tate.
Ken is on Twitter at DLF_KenK