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!
Now that we have entered the off-season, the next few months will be filled with rumors. Much of the “news” will be speculation about the futures of individual players. While this can be important, it can also be a challenge to determine the validity of certain reports. I will included many of these reports and share my opinion about how the player’s value might be affected, for better or worse.
Here is a quick look at the events of the past week and how they impact the players on your team:
Alex Smith, QB SF
Although the 49ers off-season has not begun as they face the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC championship game this weekend, the conjecture regarding potential off-season moves has already started. One move that seems clear is that the team will, in some form, part ways with former starter Alex Smith. As we’ve mentioned here before, there are clearly several teams in need of help at the position, so Smith will likely be in demand. He still has value in dynasty leagues and I have yet to see him dropped in any leagues I am part of, so he’s a player to hold for now with the hopes he gains value with a change of scenery. Colin Kaepernick is clearly entrenched as the starter in San Francisco.
Daniel Thomas, RB MIA
The Dolphins disappointing second year running back Daniel Thomas underwent surgery to repair the knee injury that landed him on the injured reserve list. The surgery was successful and Thomas should be a full participant in training camp, but is now third on the depth chart, depending on the status of free agent Reggie Bush. If Bush departs Miami, the Dolphins are expected to give rookie Lamar Miller a larger role, but would likely add another running back as well. Thomas now has back to back disappointing seasons after he was expected to unseat Bush as the lead back. He has become one of the roster cloggers I have mentioned in the past. Although he is rostered in most dynasty leagues, he carries little value and is not good enough to trust in your starting lineup. Miller, on the other hand, is a good option to buy right now before Bush makes his decision later this off-season.
Kenny Britt, WR TEN
Even though the NFL’s off-season has not even begun for all teams, Titans oft-troubled wide receiver Kenny Britt has already earned headlines for the wrong reasons. Britt was involved somehow in a stabbing and shooting in his home state of New Jersey. Reportedly, a friend of Britt’s was stabbed and driven to the hospital by Britt, though the Tennessee wideout failed to cooperate with police at the scene. Later that night, there was also a shooting in the same area that Britt is said to have had some part in. The details are fuzzy at this point, but Britt continues to find trouble and it cannot be comforting for the Titans brass or his dynasty owners. This could be a case where enough is enough and the Titans decide to cut him loose. Dynasty owners might want to follow suit and sell low.
Rob Gronkowski, TE NE
Although the Patriots cruised to a victory over the Houston Texans, tight end Rob Gronkowski was a casualty of the game as he again suffered a broken right forearm. The injury will cost him the remainder of the playoffs and require surgery to repair. Gronkowski is clearly the top tight end in football, but now has three serious breaks over the past year, including last season’s broken ankle that cost him much of the season and hobbled him in the Super Bowl. It is clear though that he will remain the top tight end for most dynasty owners and will likely be chosen in the first or second round of startup drafts this off-season.
DeVier Posey, WR HOU
Another player suffering a serious injury in that game was Texans rookie wide receiver DeVier Posey, who tore his Achilles. The injury will cost him all of the off-season workouts and likely much of the 2013 regular season. Although Posey showed some flashes, especially towards the end of the season, he is not worth holding onto throughout this injury, unless you have the deepest of dynasty rosters.
Jared Cook, TE TEN
According to ESPN reports, the Titans are expected to use their franchise tag on free agent tight end Jared Cook. The tag would pay Cook the average of the top five tight end salaries in the game. It would be an interesting move, considering the team has shown little interest in working out a long term deal with him. This could be a sign that they feel he only adds short term value to the team. Cook’s value would be unchanged should he remain with the Titans, although with a new offensive coordinator, Dowell Loggains (who took over for the fired Chris Palmer) and a new tight end coach, Cook could improve.
Darren McFadden, RB OAK
Even though he struggled and dealt with injuries in 2012, running back Darren McFadden was praised and labeled as the Raiders starting tailback for next season by Oakland general manager Reggie McKenzie. The Raiders plan to change their running scheme next season, which should benefit McFadden should he manage to stay on the field. McFadden’s dynasty value has taken a huge hit over the past year, thanks to the previously mentioned struggles. If you expect him to bounce back, now is a great time to make an offer.
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