NFL Roster Cutdown Roundup: Dynasty Analysis
The roster cutdown weekend is always an exciting one in dynasty leagues. Some veterans are always surprisingly let go, teams give up on previously highly coveted youngsters, depth charts formulate and we even have an occasional big trade. Redraft leagues may not be affected all that much, but dynasty league enthusiasts always see some massive shifts in long-term player value. With that all said, let’s take a look at this year’s roster moves and their impact in dynasty leagues.
Check back on this article often as it will be updated throughout the weekend. Player news items are listed in reverse order, with the newest movements towards the top.
LESEAN MCCOY SIGNS WITH KANSAS CITY
The Chiefs were one of the teams rumored to have interest in McCoy after he was cut by the Bills. In the end, McCoy’s free agency lasted only 12 hours as he agreed to a one-year deal to reunite with Andy Reid with the Chiefs. The signing of McCoy throws a major monkey wrench into the running back situation for the Chiefs. While Damien Williams is likely still the starter, McCoy and rookie Darwin Thompson are both going to make this a committee approach. It’s a frustrating signing for the owners of the other Chiefs backs and will make all three of these players tough to trust early in the season. McCoy received $3 million in guaranteed money, so he’s going to surely make the team. While he’s not the player he once was, it wouldn’t be too surprising to see him have a bit of a career renaissance under Reid. However, if you have an owner who believes McCoy is going to be “vintage McCoy,” I’d take advantage of them as the chances of that aren’t very high.
TEXANS ACQUIRE KENNY STILLS
The Dolphins stunned many when they traded Laremy Tunsil, Stills and a 4th round pick for a package from Houston that included two first round draft picks. The Texans are all-in and are likely learning from Indianapolis’ handling (or mishandling) of Andrew Luck and don’t want to see Deshaun Watson’s career end earlier than it should by adding one of the league’s best blind-side protectors. They also get Stills, who was on the outs with the rebuilding Dolphins. Stills’ dynasty value doesn’t change too much as he’ll start out as the WR3 in Houston. However, Will Fuller can’t stay on the field and Stills should get plenty of snaps. He has the looks of a bit of a roster clogger in shallow leagues at the moment, though that could clearly change.
PATS CUT DEMARYIUS THOMAS…FOR NOW
After Demaryius Thomas blew up in the Patriots final preseason game, many felt he had sewn up a spot on the New England final 53-man roster. That wasn’t the case as the Pats cut him. However, it sounds like New England may use his roster spot to stash a player on IR who would have to clear waivers, then re-sign Thomas as he won’t have to clear waivers at all. Stay tuned.
JERICK MCKINNON BACK TO IR
Yikes. In the saddest news of the weekend, Jerick McKinnon was placed on IR again by the 49ers and will be lost for another season. After tearing his ACL last year and missing the entire season, his recovery has obviously not gone as planned. McKinnon’s dynasty value is just about shot and while many owners will keep him around (especially those with IR slots), he’s going to be a player trying to come back after missing two full seasons. The likelihood of him really rounding back into form seems slim at this point. His ADP is going to tank now. It’s likely good news for the pair of Tevin Coleman and Matt Breida, however.
While all dynasty eyes are on Ezekiel Elliott’s contract situation, Tony Pollard has put himself on the radar not just in dynasty leagues, but in redraft ones as well. He’s been so good that the Cowboys cut bait on fellow rookie Mike Weber today. Pollard should be on a roster in every league imaginable and could even see a regular season role with Elliott eventually back in the fold.
MELVIN GORDON GIVEN PERMISSION TO SEEK A TRADE
The biggest news of the weekend revolved around something that hasn’t even happened…yet. The Chargers are now allowing Pro Bowl running back Melvin Gordon to seek a trade. Los Angeles seems unwilling to acquiesce to Gordon’s contract demands and are already rumored to be interested in LeSean McCoy to pair with Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson. Gordon’s ADO has been slipping as of late and is under 20 for the first time in over a year. Dynasty owners are hoping there’s a resolution here soon as possible with Gordon settling on a new contract or finding a new home before next weekend. At this point, it’s hard to say just what his future may hold and his ADP is going to be in flux until this is resolved. In the meantime, Gordon owners can let their imaginations run at the thought of him landing in Kansas City, Houston, New Orleans, or Philadelphia even though he’ll likely end up in New England because they hate fantasy football.
CARLOS HYDE ACQUIRED BY HOUSTON
After lackluster stops in both Cleveland and Jacksonville last year, the Chiefs were hoping Carlos Hyde could find himself rejuvenated in an Andy Reid-led offense. Instead, Hyde looked washed up this preseason and was thoroughly outplayed not just by Damien Williams, but by Darwin Thompson as well. Hyde lands in a good spot at this point, but it’s hard to see him really surpassing Duke Johnson on the depth chart. The move was bad news for Damarea Crockett, who was given his walking papers after the move. As for Hyde, it’s likely going to take an injury or two to make him anything more than a change of pace player or handcuff. He’s just not an intriguing dynasty player at this point in his career.
TAYWAN TAYLOR TRADED TO CLEVELAND
A former preseason star, Taylor never really got it going in Tennessee. He’ll cover for Antonio Callaway during his suspension, but the shine on Taylor is fading. He finds himself in an upgraded offense, but also in a crowded receiver room. As such, Taylor is a pretty tough hold in dynasty leagues.
SEAHAWKS CUT MOST OF THEIR BACKUP OFFENSE
After getting Jadeveon Clowney, the Seahawks needed to cut payroll. They achieved that by cutting Geno Smith, Jaron Brown and Paxton Lynch, among others. Brown is the one who saves them the most and they’re rumored to be interested in re-signing Smith instead of keeping him and guaranteeing his deal. It’s a tough break for Brown, who has been a back-of-the-roster favorite for dynasty owners considering the depth (or lack thereof) of the Seahawks receiving corps.
For those Todd Gurley owners out there, this is likely noteworthy. While Darrell Henderson looks like the handcuff to Gurley, he wasn’t overly impressive this off-season. The former Tennessee Vol will look to find a new home or head to the practice squad. While Brown really isn’t too roster worthy for owners who don’t have a high investment in Gurley, he’s clearly worth monitoring.
END OF THE ROAD FOR DWAYNE ALLEN
Dwayne Allen has really hit hard times and was cut by Miami this weekend. It’s bad news for Allen and great news for Mike Gesicki, who should get all he can handle for the rebuilding fish.
SAMAJE PERINE CUT BY THE REDSKINS
Another one-time dynasty rookie draft darling, Perine did little with his chances in Washington and was never able to look like the back from Oklahoma that re-wrote the single game FBS record book with 427 rushing yards against Kansas. Perine’s departure is good news for the health of Derrius Guice, who has looked good so far this preseason.
THE TURK VISITS J’MON MOORE
The Packers loaded up on receivers in last year’s draft, but have come up empty on a bunch of them, including Moore. If you were holding out hope Moore would develop and shine with Aaron Rodgers, go grab your favorite beverage and cry in it.
JOSH ADAMS GETS HIS WALKING PAPERS
The Eagles cut both Josh Adams and Wendell Smallwood today, paving the way for a Miles Sanders / Jordan Howard / Darren Sproles-led backfield. Adams showed some flashes last season, but the writing was on the wall for both of these players after the Eagles re-tooled their backfield.
REDSKINS GIVE UP ON JOSH DOCTSON
Laquon Treadwell was certainly disappointed he was let go in Minnesota, but at least he wasn’t the only first round receiver sent packing as Washington finally cut bait with Doctson. While his athleticism is still intriguing, Doctson has just not been able to stay healthy or productive enough to really make an impact in the NFL. Like Treadwell, it’s time to waive him unless he somehow gets claimed by a receiver-needy team with a solid quarterback and real need at receiver, which is pretty doubtful.
VIKINGS THROW IN THE TOWEL ON LAQUON TREADWELL
Minnesota finally admitted what we’ve all known for some time now – Treadwell is a first round bust. The former 23rd overall pick was just never able to separate at the NFL level and could find it hard to get a second chance as he’s shown relatively nothing throughout his career. Dynasty owners who burned a high rookie pick on Treadwell were burned themselves and even the most stubborn of dynasty league owners should admit defeat on this one.
The biggest news of the cutdown period came early on Saturday morning as the Bills cut veteran LeSean McCoy. This will reportedly put Singletary into the RB1 role for the Bills and will immediately improve his rookie draft ranking to that of a late first round selection. McCoy will certainly get another chance, but his value is in serious flux right now. While Frank Gore will clearly get some carries, the 5’7″ Singletary is going to get a golden opportunity. Expect his ADP to rise pretty steadily over the next week or so.
BRAXTON BERRIOS LET GO BY NEW ENGLAND
Every off-season inevitably brings a search for the next New England slot reciever. Berrios looked like he could be that player last off-season, but he just couldn’t put it together for the Pats. I guess we’ll keep searching.
MASON RUDOLPH TO BACK UP BIG BEN
One of the bigger winners this preseason was Rudolph, who looked like the heir apparent in Pittsburgh. While certainly owned in Superflex or 2QB leagues, Rudolph is now worth a look in deep dynasty leagues as well. While not an elite prospect, he clearly looked the part this preseason. In other rookie backup quarterback news, Jarrett Stidham looks like he’ll begin the year as the backup in New England and he seems like a solid deep stash.
CHAD WILLIAMS LET GO IN THE DESERT
Former third rounder Chad Williams was released by Arizona. The writing was on the wall with a new coaching staff and so many draft picks used on receivers by the Cardinals this season. It’s a tough break for a highly drafted rookie and a bad sign for his career. Owners who were holding out hope can open up a shiny new roster spot.
It was a tough week for more veterans as these three were all let go by their respective teams. Henderson was moderately interesting, but all three belong in the free agent pool.
THOMAS RAWLS GETS THE AXE IN JACKSONVILLE
Tough break for Rawls, who is now four years removed from his 830-yard season in Seattle when he took over for Marshawn Lynch. Rawls is just about at the end of line here.
ELIJAH MCGUIRE LET GO BY THE JETS
A popular sleeper last season, McGuire failed to capitalize on his opportunity with New York and is now out of work. With Le’Veon Bell in the fold, it was unlikely McGuire was going to get much run. However, getting cut isn’t a great sign for his dynasty future. He can be sent to waivers in dynasty circles.
RODNEY ANDERSON TEARS HIS ACL AGAIN
Awful, awful news for Anderson, who has torn his ACL in the same knee. He was explosive at Oklahoma and was a rising sleeper in dynasty circles. After the latest injury, it’s going to be tough for him to make a roster next season. He’s an easy cut in dynasty leagues at this point.
TERRELLE PRYOR RELEASED BY THE JAGS
This could be it for Pryor. After his one magical season in Cleveland, Pryor has now been cut by the Jaguars, Bills and Jets after he failed to re-sign with the Redskins. At 30 years old, he’ll be lucky to get another shot. He shouldn’t be anywhere near dynasty rosters.
RYAN FITZPATRICK NAMED DOLPHINS STARTER
The Dolphins are in full-blown tank mode, yet aren’t quite ready to hand the reigns over to Josh Rosen. Fitzpatrick will be a serviceable backup on dynasty rosters, but he’ll most likely be benched in favor of Rosen after a month or so. As for Rosen, the fact he didn’t dominate the competition is a little alarming. He’ll make starts this year and they need to be good ones as the Dolphins are clearly in the hunt for the first overall pick that would likely push Rosen to his third team in as many seasons.
- The Dynasty Aftermath: Mascot Tournament NFC Finals - December 5, 2023
- The Dynasty Fantasy Football Impact of Tank Dell’s Injury - December 4, 2023
- Five in Five: Week Thirteen Dynasty Storylines - December 2, 2023