Rookie hype is very dangerous and it happens every season. Some owners give up way too soon on rookies and allow for great buy lows. Other times, people view prospects as the second coming of Hall of Fame players and would never sell them off. I’m going to give you my stock trader opinion on a bunch of rookies from this season who you can take advantage of this off-season.
Marqise Lee, WR JAX
I’m not ready to throw Lee to the wolves (as most have) because we are just now seeing him play healthy (hamstring/ankle injuries in the off-season, training camp, early season). I don’t see him becoming a #1 FF WR, but I could see him settle into a nice WR2/3 role for a FF team. I consider him a buy low right now because most attention in Jacksonville will be about Allen Robinson and Lee is the forgotten man.
Carlos Hyde, RB SF
The 49ers were a mess this season and Frank Gore is most likely done. Hyde is very talented and could thrive once that OL gets healthy next season.
Davante Adams, WR GB
People loved his landing spot and he’s done some good things in Green Bay. But he’s hit a rookie wall, now is the time to swoop in for him. Randall Cobb is an UFA and could leave a huge hole for Adams to fill in year two.
Brandin Cooks, WR NO
[inlinead]Marques Colston is a prime candidate to be released and Cooks impressed the heck out of everybody in training camp/preseason. But now Kenny Stills is getting attention and that only helps Cooks’ buy low value. Use that and snatch up Cooks before he catches 100 passes in the near future.
Donte Moncrief, WR IND
Andrew Luck is the best quarterback in dynasty format and right now all he has is TY Hilton. Another receiver will be getting a lot of quality targets with Reggie Wayne and Hakeem Nicks likely gone next season. Moncrief had an inconsistent rookie season, but is a very good athlete. If you can grab him without paying through the nose, do it because his value could blow up.
Isaiah Crowell/Terrance West, RB CLE
I’m going to be doing a piece on the Browns running game, but I’m buying all day for the right price.
Martavis Bryant, WR PIT
I was a fan of him out of Clemson, but he’s improved as a receiver. He has the size and athletic ability to be a WR1 in FF. His situation isn’t ideal because he’s sharing with Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown. Bryant has also hit a rookie wall down the stretch and seems to have regressed in his route running. But I saw some incredible things during the middle of the season: high pointing fades, good route running, and tracking the ball well down field. Bryant is my #1 buy low target this off-season from the rookie class due to his price.
James White, RB NE
Remember this guy? He was taking first team reps in training camp and was a sleeper for a number of people. Through 16 weeks, he had only 12 touches on the season and is now a forgotten man. Perfect for a buy low! Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley are free agents and that creates a big opportunity for production in New England. I know many don’t want any part of this running game, but White isn’t going to cost a lot to obtain right now. Pick him up and then flip him in the off season when he gets some hype.
Paul Richardson, WR SEA and Kevin Norwood, WR SEA
The Seahawks desperately need improvement to their passing game and have Russell Wilson. Now they just need a wide receiver to step up and I see a great opportunity for targets for one of these players. I like Richardson more than Norwood, but both could be had for peanuts right now.
Mike Evans, WR TB
This is more of a buy high than anything, but Evans has progressed more than I thought in his rookie season. I think he is flying a bit under the radar thanks to Odell Beckham and won’t garner as high of a price to obtain. Evans has 11 touchdowns on only 118 targets, that’s the same amount of touchdowns as Demaryius Thomas on 59 less targets with much worse quarterback play. The kid is good and I think can be obtained for less than elite wide receiver prices, which is where I see him in the future.
Derek Carr, QB OAK
Quietly he has turned in a good rookie season and nobody is paying any mind to it. That’s when you sneak it for a buy low. Carr has a better TD/INT ratio than Matt Stafford and has been sacked less than Aaron Rodgers – not bad for a rookie quarterback in Oakland of all places with very little talent around him. I also like the potential of Jim Harbaugh teaming up with him and helping him develop.
Kelvin Benjamin, WR CAR
He had a better than expected season and is in a great situation. I don’t think people are going to pay above market value for him and I think he could repeat this year’s numbers most seasons.
Eric Ebron, TE DET
I’m not a fan of his game and he has a lot of competition in Detroit for targets. But he has performed so badly this season, I would hold him just because he hasn’t gotten a fair shake thus far in his career. He could be a stud or a dud, nobody knows.
Odell Beckham Jr., NYG
Look, he’s played lights out and I like him as a player…but if you can sell him for a great premium., I’d do it. Not many can play that lights out for that long and some owners will give top 5 dynasty value for him.
Tre Mason, RB STL
I liked what I saw from him, but i’m not certain he’s the long term answer there. I don’t see his small frame holding up year in and year out. He may prove me wrong for a year or two, but not beyond that IMO. He can do everything, so he should yield a good return.
Devonte Freeman, RB ATL
I just don’t see a FF starter in this guy. If someone does, cash out if the Falcons move on from Steven Jackson this off-season.
Charles Sims, RB TB
If the Bucs move on from Doug Martin this offseason, sell Sims while the market is high. They have a terrible offensive line and Charles Sims turns 25 in September. I didn’t like him out of college and his rookie season has shown no improvement.
Andre Williams, RB NYG
He is averaging 3.35 yards per carry, if anyone thinks he’s the answer with the Giants, accept the deal.
Johnny Manziel, QB CLE
I’ve given up on him because being a quarterback is all about preparation. With his size, he can’t afford not to watch film and be at the facility longer than anyone. I would sell and get what you can, despite having Jordan Cameron and Josh Gordon as targets.