Much like us here at DLF, there really is no offseason in the NFL. Even after the dramatic conclusion of the Super Bowl and the MVP’s trip to Disney World, the day-to-day business of the league continues. This means you should be paying attention to give yourself every advantage in 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 it Impacts the players on your team.
Mohamed Massaquoi, WR CLE
Following last week’s supplemental draft selection of rookie Josh Gordon, ESPN Cleveland speculates that the veteran Massaquoi will eventually lose his starting role in the Browns offense. Many dynasty owners are still holding tight to the former Georgia Bulldog, but the truth is his numbers have declined each season and he only has two career 100 yard games, both coming his rookie season of 2009. It is time to cut the bait on the former second rounder and take a chance on another younger prospect like Panthers wide receiver Joe Adams, or even a veteran who might start for you this year, like the Broncos Andre Caldwell.
Drew Brees, QB NO
Brees and the Saints agreed on a long-term deal that will keep Brees in the Big Easy for the next five seasons and pay him a cool $100 million. Many had criticized the team for not ponying up and rewarding Brees for his role in the revival of the Saints, not to mention the city of New Orleans. No one really doubted a deal would eventually get done though and Brees owners, along with those owning Marques Colston, Jimmy Graham and Darren Sproles can rest easy. All can be penciled in as weekly starters for another season.
Mike Williams, WR FA
Big Mike Williams was released by the Seattle Seahawks – the team that gave him his second chance in the league and with whom he enjoyed his only success as a professional. There had been rumors around Seattle that this move could come, but the timing was still somewhat surprising as training camp approaches. After a surprising 2010 season that saw him catch 65 balls for over 750 yards, Williams suffered injuries and was outplayed by rookie Doug Baldwin in 2011, totaling 18 catches on the year. It seems like many owners had already given up on the former Trojan, but being cut by his former college coach is a good sign that he belongs nowhere near your dynasty roster.
Charles Clay, TE MIA
The Miami Dolphins are convinced the tight end/running back hybrid can play a significant role as part of the team’s offense. The team lacks playmakers outside of running back Reggie Bush and should give Clay, and anyone else that shows any promise, plenty of opportunity to show what they have as the team rebuilds. It had been in question of what position Clay would be assigned in fantasy leagues, but MyFantasyLeague has designated him as a tight end for the 2012 season. Clay has been a hot pickup in many leagues lately and is worth rostering while we see how the team uses him in training camp.
Jeff Fuller, WR MIA
Local beat writers in Miami are wondering if rookie Jeff Fuller will even make the team’s active roster. Fuller was once a top prospect at wide receiver, but fell down the draft boards following a poor senior year. As an undrafted free agent, Fuller signed with the Dolphins and was reunited with college teammate Ryan Tannehill, leading some to label Fuller a fantasy sleeper. This news is worrisome considering the lack of options the Dolphins have at wide receiver. There are several other rookie wideouts to take a chance on instead of Fuller.
Matt Forte, RB CHI
Running back Matt Forte and the Chicago Bears agreed to terms on a four year contract, averaging $8 million per season. Forte’s fantasy stock can finally start a slow climb back after an off-season where many in the fantasy world questioned Forte’s long term role with the team. The Bears signed former Raider running back Michael Bush to backup Forte and there were many rumors that the Bears were not comfortable rewarding Forte with a long term deal. Forte remains an RB1 in PPR leagues and is a steal in the second or third round of startup dynasty drafts.
Ray Rice, RB BAL
The Baltimore Ravens signed their star runner to a five year deal, paying him $40 million. Unlike Forte in Chicago, Rice’s fantasy stock never took a hit as contract talks were ongoing, even as it looked like a deal would not be made. Rice is being taken in the top five of most startup drafts, but with his touches piling up, a wide receiver or even Browns rookie Trent Richardson are tempting options.
Dez Bryant, WR DAL
Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant was arrested and charged with assault following a confrontation with his mother. This is just another cause for concern among the Cowboys brass, along with dynasty owners. While it is still uncertain if Bryant will face any punishment from the league for this recent occurrence, it does show us that Bryant has not turned the corner. This risky behavior he continues to exhibit is reason enough to drop him in dynasty rankings as there are many safer options in the same wide receiver tier. If you own Bryant, now is not the time to move him. If you are ready to give up on him, wait for the inevitable big game he will put up and you will have the chance to deal him.
Marshawn Lynch, RB SEA
Another top player in trouble with the law this week was Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch, who was arrested and charged with driving under the influence. Lynch is a repeat offender to the league’s behavior conduct policy and will almost certainly be suspended multiple games for this offense, even though his representatives seem to think he will avoid missed games. Like Bryant, Lynch’s value takes a hit not only because of this specific event, but the pattern he has displayed throughout his career. Backup running backs Leon Washington and rookie Robert Turbin are now hot commodities. If either are on the waiver wire in your league, they are well deserving of adding while we wait for the league’s ruling.
Bryce Brown/Dion Lewis, RBs PHI
The two young running backs for the Philadelphia Eagles will battle for the backup job behind starter LeSean McCoy. It was assumed that Lewis would again earn the backup job, but Brown, the team’s seventh round draft choice, has been very impressive. Another rookie, the undrafted Chris Polk, seems to be out of contention for one of the top two jobs. As training camps begins, watch this battle closely and be sure to roster the Eagles primary backup. All three young running backs are worth holding at this point.
Kenny Britt, WR TEN
More bad news for Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt, who has a history of trouble off the field. This news, though, is related to the star’s injured knee. Britt underwent his third knee surgery in the past ten months, although this procedure was on the wide receiver’s left knee, not the right knee he injured early in the 2011 season. Britt has been ranked and drafted highly this off-season, being taken in the second round of some startup dynasty drafts, despite the severe knee injury. This news has a major affect on Britt’s dynasty value, possibly dropping him out of the top ten dynasty wide receivers. If you are a believer in the 24 year old’s ability and are willing to take the risk, now is a great time to try to buy low. Britt will likely start training camp on the PUP list and could miss early regular season game time.
Alex Green, RB GB
It was noted on the Green Bay Packers’ official website recently that the team is counting on running back Alex Green to make an impact on offense this season. With veteran Ryan Grant gone and the team failing to bring in a replacement to compete with starter James Starks, it is easy to assume that the team has high hopes for Green. His value surged early in the off-season, but seems to have leveled off. Now is a good time to check on Green’s price before training camp reveals how much the Pack will rely on him. The other running back to watch is Brandon Saine, who is expected to contribute on third down.
Check back every Friday for another update on the week’s impact events!
Follow Ryan McDowell on Twitter @RyanMc23.