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Dynasty Fantasy Football Trading Post: D’Andre Swift

What now for a player who was once regarded as a top-five dynasty asset, D’Andre Swift?

D'Andre Swift

Everybody has their price. For example, do I want to eat a ghost pepper chip? No. If someone offered me $50 to eat one, I would politely decline. However, if someone offered me $50,000 to eat a ghost pepper chip? Pass the bag and call an ambulance because down the hatch it goes.

On the other hand, I love pizza. Do you want to give me a slice for a dollar? Yes, please! If you ask me to pay $100 for a slice of pizza? No thank you.

The same principle applies to fantasy players. Players who score fantasy points are nice. Players who have the upside to score a lot of points in the future are nice as well. The important piece you need to figure out is how much you think a player is worth when taking points and potential into account. There are many times your personal answer to this equation does not match the answer of the masses. For the past few years, this was the case for running back I want to talk about today.

But I think we are finally at a place where I can get on board with the price of…

D’Andre Swift, RB DET

Before looking into his current price I think it is important to look back and gain perspective on the ride we took to get to this place.

As part of a very strong running back draft class, Swift came into the league with an impressive ADP of 25 in February 2020. He had all the makings of a workhorse back and good enough measurables to carry the hopes and dreams of fantasy managers on his back. Ending the season at RB17 in points per game with 14.5 was enough to fill our hearts with hope that next year could be the year he and the rest of the Lions’ offense put it all together and dreams become reality.

By October 2021, Swift raised his average draft position to four. Not running back four, not fourth best player whose name starts with a D, but fourth player overall. While not quite living up to fourth overall, our main character finished the season as the RB11 in points per game with 16.2.

Entering the 2022 season, not much has changed. We have seen enough where we believe the upside is still obtainable and not enough running back talent has come in to feel like we needed to push back Swift’s ADP. September 2022 ADP shows our guy sitting strong at seventh overall. This is where things start to get a little ugly. If you look at the graph above you will see what either looks like a really fun slide to go down or a precipitous mountain cliff, depending on your personality.

After a strong two-game opening to the season, Swift got injured and missed his obligatory three games. At this point, Jamaal Williams was setting the touchdown world on fire and Swift was barely lighting a spark in the stat sheets. Weeks 8-17 saw him scoring as the RB25 in points per game including an RB3 finish in week 17. Finishing in a familiar spot as RB17, the shine and shimmer had fallen off. DLF’s most recent ADP of February 2023 has our once dreamboat drop down to 40th overall.

Why did I make you sit through that whole rollercoaster? Because I can! And because like I said in the beginning, price is very important. I have always been a fan of Swift and in the beginning, had the same hopes and dreams as everyone else. It appears I may have seen the reality of the situation a bit quicker and realized that while the upside is there in his talent the upside might not be there on the field. So while I would be very amenable to having him on my fantasy team, it wouldn’t be able to happen since I did not value him nearly the same as everyone else. But now here we are, and his ADP of 7 is now 40. What was once a Trade Analyzer score of the upper 600s is a much more digestible 431.

Now let us continue our journey to the DLF Trade Finder and Trade Analyzer to look at some recent trades and see how we feel about his real-world price.

If you know me at all, then you know I will do anything in my power to never trade away Tee Higgins. But in a world where someone says to me: “Russ, either you trade away Tee Higgins or you can never eat pizza again”, this is a trade I would be okay with actually hitting the accept button. We now know the reality that Swift isn’t a top-ten dynasty asset and honestly, might not be a top-ten dynasty running back, but we have seen stretches where he can score like one. If you replace “running back” with “wide receiver” you get the exact same sentiment about DJ Moore. These are two players who will be very good for your team.

This just might be the sign of someone who has given up on a player. Even with Derek Carr in his new home of New Orleans, I don’t see a way to call this trade close. Regardless of the state of my team, if someone offered me this trade I would take D’Andre, all day (I know I should not call players by their first names, but it rhymes!)

It is difficult to reconcile your feelings on a player when you had such high hopes to call them a top-five dynasty asset and they fall this far. It can be tough to realize that even though they didn’t live up to your expectations of studliness they still have very good value to your team with the points they can score. I can feel the anger and disappointment emanating from this trade. It is okay to be out on a player but you should still try and get real value back when doing whatever you can to get them off of your team. This is not that.

As usual in my articles, we may have taken the long, scenic route with lots of heavy-handed metaphors, repetitive jokes, and lots of help from our wonderful editors, but we got to the point in the end. It can be a tough and long wait for your feelings on a player and their price to meet at a point where you can get them on your team and feel good about it. Patience is a very tough virtue to practice but usually it works out for the best.

Dynasty Fantasy Football Trading Post: D’Andre Swift
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Mark Boutot
16 days ago

Lots of good points made in the article. But one thing I can’t understand is the herd mentality in valuing players in dynasty. Swift, in three years, has surpassed 1,000 yards from scrimmage just once, that just barely with 1,069 total yards in 2021. And only once in three seasons has he had double-digit TDs, that, again just barely, with 10 in 2020.
I could see ranking Swift high going into 2021 based on his production from his rookie year but to have an ADP under 10 for a full year, where does that come from? During that time frame, I wish I would have had Swift because I easily would have taken the other side of the trade and used his overratedness (it’s not a word but I’m making it one now) to bolster my team with other assets. Seeing Swift ranked as high as he has been over the past couple of years is very reminiscent of one Javonte Williams pre-injury. I just never saw that either.
The “P” word can psych people out of reality very easily, IMHO…

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