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One Trick Pony

nicks

The Colts jumped into the free agency frenzy and signed former Giants receiver Hakeem Nicks to a one-year, $3.5 million deal late this afternoon. The deal reportedly contains an extra $2 million in incentives. The one-time fantasy superstar has a myriad of leg injuries and whispers about his desire have crept us as well, deflating his value and forcing him to accept this one-year “prove it” deal with the Colts. The signing of Nicks has a wide ranging impact from New York to Indianapolis.

Let’s examine the parties involved.

Hakeem Nicks, WR IND

It’s simple.

If Nicks is healthy and his head is in it, he can be one of the most dominant receivers in the game.  At just 26 years old, he still represents a ton of potential for the Colts and they have to hope the injuries he’s incurred haven’t totally zapped his explosiveness. In his first three years in the league, Nicks posted 24 touchdowns and two 1,000 yard seasons en route to being one of the most coveted receivers in all of dynasty leagues. In the last two years, he’s only recorded a total of 109 catches for 1,588 yards and three touchdowns en route to being one of the biggest disappointments in all of fantasy football. In fact, he didn’t even score last year, despite starting in 15 games. It really didn’t matter if his landing spot was in Indianapolis, Carolina, New England, Seattle or anywhere else – if he’s right, he’s a legitimate threat on offense. If he’s not, this is going to be a really short stay in Indy.

Expect the Colts to use Nicks on the outside, opposite Reggie Wayne and use a three receiver rotation with the likes of TY Hilton. There will be much speculation on who the “starters” will be on offense, but the Colts will likely go three wide quite often so it really won’t matter too much in the end. Again, if Nicks is truly healthy (he’s been cleared by multiple doctors), he’s going to get his targets in the offense as he’s simply too good not to.

This is a tough one.

There’s really no way to accurately speculate on just how impactful the presence of Nicks is on the offense until you see him play. If he’s the same Nicks we’ve seen over the past two seasons, this is going to be a disaster. If he’s not, Andrew Luck is going to be thrilled. Nicks has to be considered a “hold” in dynasty leagues as a WR2/3 with major upside and major risk.

Andrew Luck, QB IND

Again, it all depends on Nicks’ health. If he’s back to 100% and Reggie Wayne returns to form as well, it’s going to be tough to find a team with a better trio of receivers than the Colts have amassed. Regardless, Luck continues to be a highly coveted dynasty asset and will be a QB1 for the next decade, with or without Hakeem Nicks in tow. The sky’s the limit for this Stanford grad and it’s almost unfair he gets a cupboard this stocked this early in his career.

Reggie Wayne, WR IND

Much like Nicks, Wayne needs to show he’s healthy before we can accurately assess what impact the presence of Nicks would have. At first blush, you’d think the veteran receiver would be just fine, though he certainly can’t be counted on to be a WR1 any longer. He’ll be the top target on a good team, but there are only so many balls to go around.

TY Hilton, WR IND

Make no mistake, Hilton is still the receiver to own on this roster. He enjoyed a true breakout last season with 82 catches for 1,083 yards and five touchdowns. Young, fast and talented, this playmaker is going to be a staple in the Indianapolis offense for a long time. If an owner in your league thinks this signing puts a pin in the Hilton balloon, pounce on it before finishing this article.

Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener, TEs IND

The question here isn’t really if the arrival of Nicks carves into their value – it’s if the presence of each other does it. They haven’t played together enough to really determine just how much they can contribute. Allen still looks to be the better player, but we need to see more. Nicks could conceivably take some targets away, but one of these two will still likely emerge more. Our money is on Allen.

Da’Rick Rogers, Griff Whalen and LaVon Brazill, WRs IND

Rogers has long been a hot prospect based on his talent and late season burst. Believe it or not, I don’t believe this signing really changes things all that much. He was already a deep prospect and wasn’t realistically going to be a starter this year. Reggie Wayne is aging quickly and coming off an ACL tear. Nicks is far from a sure thing as well. If and when one of those two moves on, Rogers could be poised to be ready to move to a more prominent role. If he makes the team this year, he’ll remain what he is now – a deep roster stash.

As for Whalen and Brazill, this signing does much the same for them. Whalen actually showed pretty well last season and Brazill has always flashed talent. Let’s wait and see what the Colts do in the 2014 NFL Draft and the rest of free agency before making any determinations about their future. It’s still too early to do so.

Rueben Randle and Jerel Jernigan, WRs NYG

It’s time fellas. Let’s see what you’ve got.

Ken Kelly

Ken Kelly

Senior Partner - Executive Editor at DynastyLeagueFootball
Ken is a corporate trainer by day an a tireless editor of dynasty content by night. His passion for the World Champion Seattle Seahawks is second only to his love of fantasy football and the dynasty format.

Ken is on Twitter at DLF_KenK
Ken Kelly

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Bill

    March 14, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    I don’t think this signing does anything to change Hilton’s value, but I also think his value is already super-inflated for such a boom or bust guy. TY needs to show some level of consistency before I would consider him a breakout player. Too many flops he had last year and the fact that he is so overrated by so many owners as I doubt I will ever own him.

    • Ryan Krcil

      March 18, 2014 at 7:30 am

      I think Hilton gets this “boom or bust” tag way too early considering he has only 2 years under his belt. There are multiple examples of WRs who were boom/bust and then became WR1s. Vincent Jackson is probably the best example.

  2. Ryan

    March 14, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    This was a great signing by the Colts, at worst, Nicks busts and the offense is the same as last year or better with the “addition” of Wayne (which was good enough to make the playoffs) . . . at best, they get a year of a potentially great nfl wr and the ability to lock him up long term before free agency next year.

    Roger’s value has been inflated a bit according to adp, so this probably will have an affect on his value there and he will probably drop back into that 150ish range

  3. kcDemonSlayer

    March 15, 2014 at 8:57 am

    I wish the Colts would have signed Decker. Nicks is the next best thing I think and he brings length and athleticism to a WR corp that seriously lacks it. Everyone wanted to bag on Nicks last year but the entire Giants team looked like garbage. What were Cruz’s numbers? Randle had about 3 good games and 13 disappointing games yet is a “breakout candidate”. Jernigans was great down the stretch last year…….in the slot…..where Victor Cruz plays and will also play next year. Eli looks panicked in the pocket and the O-Line was atrocious and all retired this year because of it. I think Nicks can still contribute and a change of scenery will probably do him good.

  4. Pete

    March 15, 2014 at 9:12 am

    More like one-trick phony.

    Hilton, Rogers, Allen > Nicks

    • Jon

      March 15, 2014 at 7:06 pm

      I simply do not understand this way of thinking at all.

      • DynastyFrank

        March 18, 2014 at 9:10 pm

        neither do I….and I hate Nicks. to each his own i guess.

  5. Bennie Blades

    March 15, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    I admit I do not know Indys cap situation or how much guaranteed money is included here. However, this seems like a no lose situation with zero risk. If you get a healthy Nicks for 12 games everything is great and the offense is stronger and you’ve got some more flexibility with T.Y. If he fails due to injury or lack of production, the team eats a few dollars and he stands on the sideline. Mr. Luck will be fine regardless.

  6. phantasy5

    March 16, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Yes, Decker would have been a better fit here by far but, what do we know? I really can’t stand guys like Nicks (Bowe comes to mind) that have a boat load of talent and the worst attitude, coupled with the injury bug! For the Colts it’s not terrible b/c he’s got a 1 yr. prove deal laiden with incentives, which better be enough to motivate him? If it works out he could take Wayne’s place and have Rodgers step up next season, if not they move on. I would love to see them use the TE more in this offense so we can find out which TE is the bread winner? Lastly, I’m happy Randle will be getting his shot to prove himself. Guys, don’t forget NYG have a new OC this season, no more Gilbride, no more stupid play action that fools nobody! They’ll be running a West Coast style offense which I’m not a fan of but a change was needed in order to get better. I see Cruz playing on the outside with Randle and Jernigan in the slot? This team has more holes than a golf course!

  7. Sultan of Swat

    March 17, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Ken,

    A bit off topic but … How does the Carolina Panthers’ loss of their top 4 WR’s with no replacements to this point in free agency impact the value of Greg Olsen? Cam Newton?

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