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Twitter Observations: Injuries Boost Elijah Mitchell and Kenyan Drake, but Where is Kadarius Toney?

What was the dynasty chatter on Twitter this week?

Kenyan Drake

Now the real fun begins with our dynasty teams. We have real-life games to analyze and scrutinize so we can build the best dynasty team possible. We also have real-life tweets from the week after week one to dissect a few of which are below.

O ye of Mitchell Faith

Let’s start with the bad. The news from Raheem Mostert was truly heartbreak-emoji worthy. After just two carries to start the 2021 season (and totalling 20 yards!), Mostert’s season is done after suffering a knee injury. He was already pushing the envelope as a 29-year old running back and now won’t be back on the field until he’s 30.

In the meantime, rookie Elijah Mitchell stepped up and looked like the starter going forward. After the surprising news that third-round pick, Trey Sermon, was a healthy scratch to start the season, Mitchell was the next man up and proceeded to run for 104 yards and a touchdown on just 19 carries. Granted, it came against a Detroit defense ranked dead-last in DVOA last season but it’s still a promising debut for the sixth-round rookie.

Dynasty Impact: To be perfectly transparent, I have never understood why Sermon was going as high as he was in rookie drafts even before week one. Maybe it was the lack of other rookies at the position but he was still a third-round pick for a team that consistently rotated their backs. They’ve had exactly one running back in the Kyle Shanahan-era clear 200 carries in a season and that was four seasons ago. No matter who the back is, they will not be a workhorse or close to RB1 material.

Having said that, Mitchell will be a value compared to where he was a week ago. He was probably the first or most expensive claim this week in your dynasty leagues and should have been. He appears to be the starter for the foreseeable future and did nothing to change that. As far as trades go, you can check out some of the most recent deals involving Mitchell on our DLF Trade Finder here. There are a few that involve bench players or later (third or fourth) rookie picks. For those prices, I would do it. That situation may not warrant RB1 production but it certainly would garner RB2.

United Saints

Perhaps the most surprising storyline from week one took place in Jacksonville. It wasn’t Aaron Rodgers and the Packers completely lying down for the Saints. Rather, it was quarterback Jameis Winston throwing for five touchdowns, committing no turnovers, and looking like an MVP candidate. It’s (extremely, very, ridiculously) early but it’s a great sign for Winston to do so well.

Dynasty Impact: The week one performance will have an immediate impact on Winston’s dynasty value especially considering how low it was.

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Granted, he wasn’t named the starter until very late in the preseason but to only be considered a low-end QB2 despite having a clear path to a starting job and a coach who’s been so fantasy-scoring friendly in his career is strange.

Needless to say, his value won’t be that low again for a while. Using the DLF Trade Analyzer, Winston is still valued lower than a first-round rookie pick in superflex leagues. If you can do that, do it now before it’s too late.

Toney Express

It’s only two games but the early returns on Kadarius Toney can’t be what the Giants envisioned. Taken in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Giants selected Toney after he played just 18 games as an actual receiver at Florida but were blown away by his measurables. Traits like his 4.37-second 40-yard dash speed, 96% burst score and more pushed Toney to the top of many mock drafts in the lead up to the actual draft where he was taken 20th overall.

Issues immediately arose after he signed his contract, from being placed on the COVID list, and was relegated to second-team duties in mini-camp. He powered through but has only been on the field for six weeks and it shows. He caught just two balls in week one and none in week two and is obviously at the bottom of the pecking order when it comes to the Giants offense.

Dynasty Impact: While it hasn’t been a great start for Toney, at least dynasty players could say they saw it coming. Consistently ranked behind second-round receivers, you can see where Toney was going in rookie drafts using the DLF Rookie App. Even those who took him in the middle of the second round of rookie drafts knew they were taking a flyer.

Toney had played less than two seasons at the position and was drafted by a team with Jason Garrett calling the plays. He was an uneven prospect going into a bad situation. If you have him, he’s riding your taxi squad and may be used as a throw-in for other trades. But steer clear if you can because things will get worse before they get better.

Drake-Even

It didn’t take long for Kenyan Drake dynasty owners to get some redemption. After signing with the Raiders in the off-season, presumably, to handle backup/passing down duties, his role seemingly was set to change in week two. With the injury to Josh Jacobs that will sideline him for at least one week, Drake is set to start for the third team in his career.

Or will he? The tweet above can’t provide a good feeling to those who had Drake stashed on their dynasty bench. And it’s not as if he couldn’t handle starter duties in the past so for coach Jon Gruden to talk about him like he’s a rookie is just odd.

Dynasty Impact: Any bump in Drake’s dynasty value as a result of the Jacobs injury was quickly squashed with the quote above. Not that it was high in the first place after his move to Arizona. Case in point, he finished the 2020 season as low-RB2 in dynasty ADP but plummeted to the RB3/4 category.

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He’s committed to the Raiders for a good chunk of money no matter what happens so he isn’t going anywhere. But starter minutes could have boosted his present-day value. At the end of the day, it’s not worth it to mess with a Jon Gruden player as long as Gruden is prone to these thoughts about Peyton Barber popping into his head. Hard pass.

Twitter Observations: Injuries Boost Elijah Mitchell and Kenyan Drake, but Where is Kadarius Toney?
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