Dynasty Trending Observations: CJ Stroud is a Stud, Jared Goff (Somehow) is Too

Michael Moore

With offenses having more trouble scoring than they have had in over a decade, having the right players on your dynasty team is more important than ever. Below are a few of the bigger trends to follow so you can get those players on or off your dynasty team.

Stroud in Mystery

There were a few options when it came to quarterbacks in this last NFL Draft. Carolina used the first overall pick on Bryce Young, a former Heisman winner from Alabama. So far, Young is averaging a little more than five yards per attempt and has more turnovers (six) than touchdowns (five). The Panthers are also 0-6. Then there was Scouting Combine stud Anthony Richardson who the Colts took at five. The Colts are 3-3 but Richardson has only appeared in four of those games and has more rushing touchdowns than passing touchdowns.

Which brings us to CJ Stroud. Selected second overall, the expectations were always going to be high when it came to his production. But as the post above references, Stroud is making history. Not only did he have the most attempts before throwing an interception but he’s averaging over 275 passing yards, thrown nine touchdowns, and is a bona fide QB1 in fantasy leagues. The Texans have also matched their entire win total from last year and are 3-3.

It’s still very early in Stroud’s – and the others’ – careers but it’s a great start, nonetheless. But what does it mean for the future of your dynasty team?

Dynasty Impact: If Stroud were to keep up this kind of production all season, he’d be the consensus top rookie from the 2023 class. And there is no reason for Stroud not to keep it up – he’s certainly not being propped up by an elite receiving corps or productive run game which means defenses are focusing on Stroud the most and he’s still burning them.

Currently, our DLF rankers have him as the tenth-ranked dynasty quarterback. He could easily make a case to jump his classmate Richardson; Justin Fields and his wildly frustrating inconsistency; and Trevor Lawrence who looks like a game manager rather than a gunslinger (albeit, a good game manager). If that happens, Stroud is knocking on the door of truly elite company like Lamar Jackson and Justin Herbert. Stroud has already proven to be a blue-chip superflex option but is close to being one in 1QB leagues as well. If your dynasty team is looking to rebuild this season, Stroud would make an excellent starting point.

The McLaughlin One

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Denver running back Javonte Williams was supposed to make his triumphant return to the field after suffering a torn ACL last year and resume his RB1 production. He gained that reputation after a solid rookie campaign that saw him gain 1,200 total yards and seven touchdowns. His sophomore season was off to a hot start, too, before the injury that saw him play in only four games in 2022. But with a whole off-season to regain the starting job, no one gave a thought to a challenger.

Enter undrafted rookie Jaleel McLaughlin. Off the radar to start the off-season, McLaughlin impressed enough in pre-season to win a roster spot. He took advantage after another injury to Williams and has shown that it won’t be easy to take him off the field. Case in point, Denver’s week six matchup with the snap counts denoted in the tweet above. Expect this kind of split to continue, especially if both Williams and McLaughlin continue to perform at the same level. It’s a great problem to have for Denver but not so much for dynasty managers of either back.

word image 1477573 1

Dynasty Impact: At the moment, Williams is the more valuable dynasty back thanks to what he built up over his first two seasons. But between the torn ACL and another (minor) injury suffered this year, it’s getting hard to rely on Williams, and certainly not in a bell cow role. For the Broncos offense, McLaughlin is a great supplement to the running game who can provide burst but also spell Williams. As far as which back-to-back for your dynasty team, Williams is probably worth less than what his current ranking represents while McLaughlin is probably worth more.

Long-term, Williams is under contract for just one more season after this. McLaughlin, on the other hand, is under contract for two. They are both in their age-23 season but with McLaughlin under team control for an additional year (and on a rookie deal, no less), look for Denver to roll with McLaughlin. He’d be worth a lower rookie pick if your dynasty team is lacking depth at the position.

Williams would be difficult to trade for between the now-shared role he has and the heightened injury risk.

Ticked Goff

Did anyone see this coming? After being shipped off to Detroit (along with several draft picks) for Matthew Stafford, most assumed Jared Goff would play out his contract on bad Lions teams and move on. That hasn’t happened. Not only are the Lions looking like a Super Bowl contender but Goff is putting up QB1 fantasy numbers. On the season, he’s averaging nearly 270 passing yards per game and 11:3 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He’s also added two rushing touchdowns for good measure. In all, he’s a top-five fantasy quarterback to start the season.

Dynasty Impact: If you’ve managed to hold on to Goff for the majority of his career, you’ve truly ridden a roller coaster when it comes to his dynasty value.

word image 1477573 2

The first incline was timed with the arrival of Sean McVay when the Rams ultimately made it to the Super Bowl. The decline was his last years on the Rams before bottoming out with the trade to Detroit. Now it’s going back up again.

If Detroit is smart, they’ll keep Goff around. He’s surrounded by elite talent at all the skill positions and is converting that talent into wins. How’s now proven – in two cities – that he can win and he’s now proving how valuable he can be in fantasy leagues. No one will mistake him for Patrick Mahomes but Goff is a good value if you don’t want to spend a lot on a starting quarterback in either a 1QB or superflex league.

michael moore