We all know the pain of holding onto that stud player too long as their production evaporates and your once highly-priced asset is essentially worthless. There are also plenty of cases of players being sold expecting that decline only to go on defying the odds. This series will examine what you should do as players approach these decision points.
Geno Smith, QB SEA
If I’d said a year ago we’d be having this conversation about Smith, I think you would have all thought I was crazy. The resurrection of his career and with it, his dynasty value, has been nothing short of remarkable. However, what should we now be doing with him from a dynasty perspective moving forward?
When reviewing Smith’s previous production, there is a relatively small volume of recent production. Since his benching in the preseason of 2015, he has been a career backup starting only five games across those six years. After then proceeding to beat out Drew Lock in training camp, Smith had an incredible season. Finishing as the QB5 in points, he also set career highs in completion percentage, passing yards, touchdowns, yards per attempt, and QBR.
The one-season sample size for a 32-year-old heading into his tenth season is unheralded and raises some serious questions about the sustainability of the situation. From an NFL perspective, his performance dropped in the second half of the season. Utilizing Pro Football Focus grades, Smith achieved a grade above 80 in four of his first eight games; however, in the second half of the season, he didn’t achieve anything higher than a 73.4 grade against the Chiefs in week 16.
Despite this drop in performance, his fantasy production was sustained. He averaged 18.22 points in that first eight-game stretch and 18.79 points per game in the final nine games. He combined a sneaky rushing floor with efficient passing statistics while targeting elite talents in Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf.
Situation and Usage
Last season he couldn’t have picked a better landing spot, with two elite receiving weapons and a much improved offensive line after both rookie tackles performed impressively. Smith capitalized on pushing the ball downfield with great success. He led the league with 15 touchdown passes of over 20 air yards; the next highest were Aaron Rodgers, Jalen Hurts, and Josh Allen with 12.
Being a free agent heading into the 2023 season, there is a serious question mark. He will be in a strong position. However, the chances are that he will return to Seattle on a two or three-year deal. Even if they decide to go in another direction, he will likely have multiple suitors and be able to pick a beneficial landing spot. With the state of the quarterback position in the NFL, I am confident he will be a starting quarterback for at least the next two seasons.
ADP and Trade Value
He is currently the QB19 in January Superflex ADP, and the trade analyzer has him worth around a late 2023 first-rounder. Recent trades are below; as you can see, his value is quite possibly even lighter than the trade analyzer suggests, with multiple examples of him being traded for a second-round pick in value.
Your opinion on the journeyman quarterback almost exclusively depends on how you approach the quarterback position. In the current ADP, he is going after Jared Goff, which I find shocking considering Smith is more likely to be a long-term starter than Goff and outproduced him considerably this last year. If you like to shoot for upside and youth, you’re probably not interested in him. However, if you prefer to aim for a solid investment return, he is a screaming value.
He will never excite or win you any off-season rounds of applause from your league mates if you acquire him. However, you’re in an excellent position if you can acquire him on the cheap to be your QB3. I like to build my superflex rosters with opposite players at the Qb2 and QB3 spots. So if I have a young high, ceiling QB2, I will opt for a steadier and safer QB3 option and vice versa.
Smith is the perfect player who can complement someone like Trey Lance, Tua Tagovailoa, or one of the incoming rookies. You can probably take advantage of rookie fever and look to acquire him for a couple of mediocre seconds or an early second and a third. As soon as he signs a new contract, his dynasty value will increase, and you can act now before that happens. At 32 years old with very few miles on the clock, I’m not concerned about him wearing away across the next couple of years and think he is a great player to acquire at a discount whether you’re competing or rebuilding.
- Dynasty Decision: Chris Godwin - March 24, 2023
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- Dynasty Decision: Jerry Jeudy - March 18, 2023