Eight OTA Dynasty Risers

Ryan McDowell

Around the league, NFL teams have been holding mandatory OTAs (Organized Team Activities). In recent weeks, we’ve seen multiple players agree to new contracts with their teams and tons of buzz about individual players. It can be difficult to determine which reports are trustworthy, but as Footballguys’ legend Sigmund Bloom says, listen for the drum beat. When the reports, whether positive or negative, are consistent, and when they come from varying sources, it’s time to listen.

Here are eight players who are in a position to gain dynasty value following positive reports from recent OTA sessions.

Tyrone Tracy Jr, RB NYG

The Giants fifth-round pick, running back Tyron Tracy, is already drawing praise and earning first-team snaps. Following the departure of long-time starter Saquon Barkley, the Giants signed veteran Devin Singletary, the presumed starter, and drafted Tracy. A former college wideout, dynasty players have targeted Tracy as a third-round rookie pick but his ADP could climb as a result of this positive news, along with his favorable pathway to playing time. Singletary is viewed as a short-term option only and second-year back Eric Gray is Tracy’s main competition for the RB2 job.

Demario Douglas, WR NE

After signing and drafting several wide receivers, the Patriots’ depth chart is in the early stages of a much-needed overhaul. The receiver who seems to have the attention of presumed future franchise quarterback Drake Maye is Demario Douglas. After surprising as a rookie last season, Douglas saw his dynasty value spike as he stood out as one of the few Patriots’ playmakers. Maye, the third-overall selection of the Patriots, recently compared Douglas to his former Tar Heel teammate Josh Downs. Maye praised Douglas’ speed and elusiveness, attributes that are rare on the New England depth chart currently. Douglas has a current DLF dynasty ADP of 153 overall and the WR69.

Braelon Allen, RB NYJ

Once viewed as the potential RB1 in this rookie class, Braelon Allen’s dynasty value has been in a steady free fall for two years now. That tumble may be coming to a close following a strong start to his professional career. With starter Breece Hall dealing with a minor injury, Allen and other backup runners saw plenty of work in OTAs and it was Allen who was the most impressive. Jets beat writer Zach Rosenblatt suggests Allen is the “clear frontrunner” to be the RB2 behind Hall. It is also noteworthy that Allen stood out as a pass-catcher out of the backfield, since that is something he rarely had the chance to do in college. Allen is coming off the board in the fourth round in current rookie ADP, making him well worth the investment in dynasty leagues.

Trey Sermon, RB IND

This one might be more of a stretch but running back Trey Sermon might just be making his way back to dynasty rosters. The former rookie bust is currently favored to win the RB2 job in Indianapolis behind Jonathan Taylor. There’s not much meat left on the backfield bone when Taylor is healthy but it is always worth investing in his backup. Taylor has missed 13 games over the past two seasons combined. A Sports Illustrated report said it was “quite clear” that Sermon was the next man up after Taylor. Even better news is that Sermon is basically free, as he doesn’t even show up in our latest June ADP data.

sermon

trey sermon | credit: grace hollars

Jaleel McLaughlin, RB DEN

Every report I have read regarding the Broncos’ backfield makes one thing clear…we should expect change in 2024. Following a disappointing season from veterans Javonte Williams and Samaje Perine, the Broncos added rookies Audric Estime and Blake Watson. Add in last year’s rookie Jaleel McLaughlin, and suddenly the Broncos have way too many bodies in the backfield. It’s Williams who is still carrying the lofty dynasty value, sporting a June ADP of 92 overall and RB24, but this backfield could belong to any of the five names listed here. Estime has often fallen to the fourth round of rookie drafts while Watson almost always goes undrafted, just as he did in the NFL Draft. My current favorite target is McLaughlin and Cecil Lammey, who covers the Broncos, seems to agree. Lammey last week, on the Denver backfield, “The top Denver running back looks like Jaleel McLaughlin. Will Javonte Williams even make the team?” While that might seem like a wild off-season take, it should be enough to impact the value of both players.

Luke McCaffrey, WR WAS

The Commanders surprisingly used the 100th overall pick in the NFL Draft on Luke McCaffrey, Christian’s brother. The draft capital was much higher than most expected for the receiver and the landing spot should also be encouraging for dynasty managers. Washington hired former Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury as their new offensive coordinator, drafted a new franchise quarterback in Jayden Daniels, and have no experienced and reliable pass-catchers beyond Terry McLaurin. McCaffrey has reportedly been showing up to team facilities early, along with Daniels, to get in extra work. The receiver has more than name value and is a steal in the mid-third round of rookie drafts, where he is currently being selected.

mccaffreyl

luke mccaffrey | credit: geoff burke

Jameson Williams, WR DET

I am a bit leery of this one, but there has been positive buzz, so Lions receiver Jameson Williams belongs on this list. Head coach Dan Campbell called Williams a “man on a mission” and the most improved player in early practices. Williams was slowed with an ACL recovery as a rookie and was suspended to begin last season but even when he’s been on the field, most haven’t noticed. He has certainly shown to be a big-play threat, scoring three 40+ yard touchdowns in his limited playing time, but he has lacked consistency. Campbell and his coaching staff have been masters over the past two seasons, so it is difficult to doubt them, but Williams seems to be capped as the third option behind Amon-Ra St. Brown and Sam LaPorta.

Bijan Robinson, RB ATL

This is probably a name you did not expect to see following the group of late-round rookies and unproven backups, but the drum beats continue to sound for current dynasty RB1 Bijan Robinson. After a somewhat frustrating rookie season, Robinson maintained his dynasty value. A coaching change and the addition of veteran quarterback Kirk Cousins solidified that value even further. Now that we are starting to hear about how Robinson will be used in the Falcons’ offense, dynasty managers are looking for ways to move him up the rankings even further. Robinson himself suggested he’d have a more balanced role as a runner and receiver out of the backfield. When asked about Robinson, new head coach Raheem Morris said the plan is to “get the ball to Bijan as much as you can in as many ideal situations as you possible can.” Sitting atop all dynasty running backs, for Robinson to actually gain value, he’ll need to overtake the receivers ahead of him in dynasty ADP, namely Marvin Harrison Jr, Amon-Ra St. Brown, CeeDee Lamb, Ja’Marr Chase, and Justin Jefferson.

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