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Dynasty Fantasy Football Mailbag: Pivoting Away from Jonathan Taylor

We answer your mailbag questions as the season approaches.

Jonathan Taylor

Welcome back to the DLF Dynasty Fantasy Football Mailbag, the preeminent mailbag in all the dynasty fantasy football land. This year I’ll be answering questions from you via X, Discord, or the old-fashioned way (via email).

We are now just weeks away from “point-scoring season”, with honest-to-god real-life football to digest and analyze with preseason games in full swing. All your work during the off-season is now ready to pay dividends. This will be the last week of the mailbag of his off-season, and I just wanted to thank everyone for the questions provided and everyone for reading every week.

Pivoting off Jonathan Taylor

If given my choice, I’d rather move away from Taylor to another position, specifically a wide receiver. That option may not always present itself though, so pivoting to another running back while getting a second piece back is also a viable approach. I would not pivot from JT to another running back straight up unless I was getting back Bijan Robinson, Breece Hall, Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, or Tony Pollard. Running backs continue to be the hand grenades of the fantasy game and I wouldn’t want to just swap out the hand grenade I’m holding unless there’s some juice involved.

As always, I like to look to the DLF Dynasty Trade Finder to see what real-world trades have taken place to give myself a frame of reference for the market.

Both the above trades are wins for the manager dealing away Taylor, I don’t really think I need to explain why. In general, you should look to move Taylor for another starting-level running back/wide receiver and a future rookie pick.

Future casting

Currently the WR8 (ADP), Chris Olave is the player I’ve invested in all summer, expecting an increase in value to WR4 or better. I’m not going to belabor this point, but if you’d like some reasons as to why I believe in his ascension see here, and here.

George Pickens is the WR37, which actually seems low to me, even though I’m not really a Pickens guy. Even if his target share was pedestrian last year, he still had a successful rookie season, and he seems to turn in a giant play every week, which is something our community loves.

Marvin Mims is the WR57, and due to injuries to KJ Hamler, Tim Patrick, and now Jerry Jeudy, is set up for instant success in Denver.

My fallers are probably not going to come as a shock. Give me Christian McCaffrey (RB2), Austin Ekeler (RB7), and Kenneth Walker (RB10). McCaffrey will be 28 this time next year, while Ekeler will be 29, and I will continue to bet against running backs in that age range. Walker is locked in a running back committee with a player (Zach Charbonnet), who is as good as a pure runner and is a better pass catcher than he is. I can’t see Walker as producing any better than a back-end RB2, and his value will follow suit.

Lance’s Red flags

The Trey Lance experience has been a brutal one for anyone who bought in on him in the dynasty. What can we learn from that experience though? First and foremost we probably should have been weary of his lack of experience, with just 18 college starts and 318 pass attempts under his belt.

Additionally just one of those starts came in the year prior to him being drafted, as he played one game in 2020. If a player is a physical marvel like Anthony Richardson, projecting traits might make sense, but Lance simply was never that guy. He’s a good athlete, but not truly elite.

The level of competition Lance played against in college – FCS – should have been something that raised our antenna as well. These factors, in and of themselves, might not have been reason to fade Lance, but in the aggregate, they should have kept the fantasy community from falling in love with him.

Moving Swift-ly

In a vacuum, with no consideration for cost, I’m out on D’Andre Swift. Generally, you want running backs who either get goal-line work and/or will see a lot of work in the passing game. In the last two seasons combined, Swift has a total of eight rushing attempts from within the five-yard line. While Swift is a good receiving back, the Eagles ranked dead last in % of targets to the running back position in 2022 with just a 12.1% target share.

Swift will compete with Kenneth Gainwell and Rashaad Penny for touches, and it’s hard to imagine he’ll see enough of an opportunity to be productive unless he is hyper-efficient. Though he ranked second in fantasy points per opportunity last season, that still only resulted in him finishing as the RB15 (PPG). Any decrease in volume, or regression to even his 2021 efficiency (16th in fantasy points per opportunity), and Swift’s fantasy production will suffer.

Dynasty Fantasy Football Mailbag: Pivoting Away from Jonathan Taylor
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joseph kepple
26 days ago

Agree that we should be weary of QBs with little experience. That is A Richardson. Here we go again. Everyone is all in on the underwear Olympics but he has little experience and he’s not a winner in college. I think the community is doing it all over again with AR. Time will tell.

Thomas Meeks
25 days ago

I remember bringing up all the points listed above in regards to Lance. I couldn’t wrap my head around the hype. It was like everyone completely forgot how to study incoming rookies and just hopped on the loony bandwagon. The fantasy community is a funny bunch

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