In this age of instant access, text alerts and 24 hour a day rumor mills, NFL fans are rarely taken by surprise. Earlier today, fans and specifically the dynasty fantasy football community was stunned by the news surrounding running back Kareem Hunt. Notice I didn’t say Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt. That’s right, in case you’ve been completely out of touch today, the Kansas City Chiefs plan to waive their star back Hunt after entertainment website TMZ released a video showing a February altercation in which Hunt assaulted a 19-year old woman.
Back in February, a report surfaced that a young woman had accused Hunt of “shoving and pushing” her. No charges were filed. While we’ve now learned the Chiefs investigated that event, including speaking with Hunt, there was little more information reported publicly after that. Essentially, we ignored it. As we’ve seen in the past with players like Ray Rice and Joe Mixon, video evidence changes everything. Even in the past couple of weeks, linebacker Reuben Foster was claimed after being arrested and subsequently waived by the 49ers. There was no video, as far as we know, of the Foster incident.
As we always have at DLF, we will focus on the dynasty impact the off-field events have on the players involved and reserve the passing of judgment for others. Obviously, this does not mean we condone Hunt’s actions, but our purpose is dynasty-centric.
Kareem Hunt, RB KC
There are so many questions surrounding Hunt and how he should be valued in dynasty leagues moving forward. Clearly, there will be a major loss in value. Personally, I quickly moved him from RB8 to RB18 in my dynasty rankings and could easily see him falling further as we learn more. With Hunt now part of the waiver system, teams will have a chance to claim him and his cheap rookie contract. As I mentioned earlier, Foster was recently claimed but the Washington Redskins took a huge amount of public criticism for that move. Their choice will serve as a warning to avoid a similar fate for some teams, while others might see it as a precedent being set, giving themselves permission to “take a chance” on Hunt.