Dynasty Buy Low/Sell High: Wide Receivers (Fantasy Football)

by Mike Tagliere | @MikeTagliereNFL | Featured Writer
May 17, 2017

Just because John Brown wasn’t on the field very much in 2016, it doesn’t mean that he still can’t offer you WR2 production for years to come.

Right after the season, recency bias is at an all-time high, as people overreact to what they just saw. It’s only human nature, after all. But this is how championship-worthy dynasty rosters are built. This is when the strong prey on the weak. You might say it’s even cruel to take advantage of someone the way you will, but hey, we’re here to dominate the competition, and that’s what we’re going to do.

As dynasty drafts rapidly approach, the trade winds will start to blow (if they haven’t already). Your inbox will be littered with offers for your best players while someone tries to unload depth to make room for their incoming rookies. Instead of just blowing them off, let’s take a look to see if there are certain players on their rosters.

Below you’ll find wide receivers to target at their lowest point, as well as others you should look to get rid of before their stock trends in the wrong direction. And just because someone is here as a buy, it doesn’t mean that you give up the world to get them, because we are trying to buy low, remember? If you missed any of the other positions earlier in the week, you can check out the links below.

Quarterbacks
Running Backs

Wide Receivers to Buy

John Brown (WR – ARI)
As mentioned at the top of the article, all that everyone remembers is what happened over the last few months, and with Brown it was filled with an illness that limited him to about 20 snaps per game. They don’t remember that he was the wide receiver who finished with 700 yards and five touchdowns with Drew Stanton throwing to him for much of the year. Or how about his second year in the league where he went over 1,000 yards and had seven touchdowns despite seeing just 101 targets. The only player to finish with more yardage on less targets was Sammy Watkins. And now, you can get Brown as the 55th wide receiver off the board in startup dynasty drafts. Larry Fitzgerald is going to be 34-years-old when the season starts and Michael Floyd is gone. Brown is entering his contract-year and could finish as a top-20 wide receiver this season.

Davante Adams (WR – GB)
I’m not sure what else Adams has to do to earn your trust, as he’s just 24-years-old, plays with the best quarterback in the league, and finished as the No. 7 wide receiver in 2016. The crazy part is that he didn’t even play up to his potential, dropping more than a few passes in the endzone last season. Aaron Rodgers said that Adams was going to be a star in the league and he started that journey last season. The Packers must feel comfortable with him as their No. 1 receiver, because Jordy Nelson is going to be 32-years-old at the end of this month, and they didn’t draft a wide receiver until the end of the fifth-round. As long as Adams is playing with Rodgers, you want to own him in dynasty. To know that you can get him in the range of Jarvis Landry and his teammate Nelson, it’s time to buy.

Donte Moncrief (WR – IND)
Similar to how the player above him (Adams) was last year, it’s now-or-never for Moncrief. Plagued by injuries over the last two seasons, Moncrief hasn’t had his breakout party, but it’s very much in the realm of possibilities this season. Andrew Luck was also dealing with injuries, but the two have now connected for a touchdown in 11 of their last 15 games played. The Colts defense has added some pieces, but are far from a shutdown unit, which means the pass attempts will be there for Luck and Moncrief. High-round draft pick with massive talent, a stud for a quarterback, and a bad defense. Sounds eerily similar to Davante Adams and the 2016 Packers team, right? Don’t be shocked if Moncrief costs you a top-25 pick next offseason.

Martavis Bryant (WR – PIT)
There are a lot of things that you hear over the offseason, but certain things resonate with me. One quote that I heard referenced was from ESPN’s Matthew Berry, who talked to a Steelers offensive coach at the NFL Combine about Bryant. They told him, “You know who he could be? He could be Randy Moss. He’s got that kind of talent.” If that doesn’t say something, I don’t know what does. Bryant was one of the most efficient receivers in NFL history over his first two seasons, totaling the most fantasy points per snap in his first season and tying Julio Jones for first in his second season. Sure, his year-long suspension clouds his outlook, but getting a 25-year-old wide receiver with his ceiling as the 39th wide receiver off the board is incredible value. He’s going off the board after Randall Cobb… think about that for a second.

Honorable Mentions: Stefon Diggs, Laquon Treadwell, Kevin White

Wide Receivers to Sell

Keenan Allen (WR – LAC)
Let me start by saying that Allen was going to move lower down my board before the Chargers drafted Mike Williams with the seventh overall pick in the NFL Draft. Let’s go ahead and admit that wasn’t a good thing for Allen’s target outlook. Regardless of how you feel about Allen’s talent, he’s been a volume-dependent receiver to this point in his career. He’ll see a better quality of targets, but his volume will take a hit with the arrival of Williams, as well as the emergence of Tyrell Williams, Hunter Henry, and Dontrelle Inman. Take a look at the chart below, describing why you should be worried.

Games STD PPG PPR PPG
More than 10 targets 11 15.60 25.96
10 or less targets 27 6.92 10.88

 
Jordy Nelson (WR – GB)
I’m not sure if people think Nelson is going to play forever, because he’s still being drafted inside of the top-20 wide receivers in startup dynasty drafts. The soon-to-be 32-year-old is coming up to the point in his career where it’s difficult to sustain WR1 production. If you missed my article on the age of decline for wide receivers, you can read that here. If it says anything, it’s that Nelson may have one more solid year in him. Nelson has been great for a long time, but if you’re able to find someone who’ll trade you straight-up for a player like Doug Baldwin, Stefon Diggs, or even his teammate Davante Adams, I suggest you jump on years of production over just one more year.

Demaryius Thomas (WR – DEN)
Similar to the above-mentioned Nelson, Thomas is coming towards the end of a pretty remarkable career. He’s not quite at the end yet, but he’s going to turn 30 at the end of this year. In dynasty, you need to sell before that stock starts trending down, which may have already happened. Not to say Thomas’ skill isn’t up to par anymore, but rather his quarterback play is a legitimate concern. Trevor Siemian isn’t going to light up scoreboards any time soon, as he threw for more than 283 yards and two touchdowns just twice in 2016. Thomas himself has already suffered due to the quarterback play, as he hasn’t scored 25 PPR points since Week 12 of 2014. They also added play-maker Carlos Henderson in the draft, giving him a bit more competition for targets. Get rid of him for someone who can be a WR1 or WR2 for years to come.

Cameron Meredith (WR – CHI)
This is not me saying that Meredith isn’t a solid player, but rather me reading in between the tea leaves. The Bears went out and spent solid money to bring in veterans Markus Wheaton and Kendall Wright, who are slated to see the field with Kevin White in three-wide receiver sets, leaving the undrafted Meredith on the outside looking in. The risk you’re taking by betting on him to finish ahead of those guys isn’t worth the risk of what you can acquire in exchange for him. According to early ADP, he is going as the No. 45 wide receiver in startup drafts, right behind John Ross (what??), and in front of Rishard Matthews and Breshad Perriman. If you can get anything close to Ross in return for Meredith, consider it robbery.

Honorable Mentions: Brandin Cooks, Jordan Matthews, Julian Edelman


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Mike Tagliere is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @MikeTagliereNFL.

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