Dynasty Players to Sell (2020 Fantasy Football)
There are no ‘sell no matter what’ players for fantasy. Dynasty is so dependent on your situation that sell players for most might be buy players for you. If you were a championship-contending team this last year in need of a wide receiver, a player like Julian Edelman – who is 33 years old – would be a buy candidate for you when he is generally a sell candidate for any non-contending team. If you sacrificed a younger player or high draft pick for an old but proven player at a needed position who helped you win it all, you still played it right regardless of what anyone says. Fantasy is all about winning the championship, dynasty is about winning and maintaining.
The average dynasty team should win once for every number of years as there are teams in your league. Whether you’re in win-now or rebuilding mode, here are some general practices to improve your roster.
Important reminders for dynasty
Age, longevity, and production are key. Targeting younger players with a proven track record is the best way to sustain a contending team. Running backs and wide receivers carry more value than other positions simply because you typically start more of them and they have value above replacements when they hit. Wide receivers carry the best dynasty value of all because they have the longest career production arc of the skill positions. Most running backs have 3-5 years of sustained production and wide receivers have 4-8 years.
Mike Tagliere did an exceptional breakdown on the age versus high-end production for each position of running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends. To try and summarize, target selling the following age groups at the positions:
- Running backs over 26 years old
- Wide Receivers over 30 years old
- Tight ends over 31 years old
In return, you want to target the exact opposite of these age groups to try and build on youth and upcoming prime performance years.
Touchdown totals inflate or deflate the value of players tremendously, even though it is the least reliable year-to-year stat in fantasy. I broke down this occurrence twice this year, once before the season found here, and once mid-season found here. You’ll notice an accuracy rate of about 70% or higher, which is the same success rate it has had for over three years in a row. If you aren’t a believer in touchdown regression, please read these articles and check out leaders from years prior at each position.
Even with all this information at our disposal, each player’s circumstances are always uniquely different that we need to take into consideration. Without any more ado, here are some top sell candidates for 2020 and beyond.
Jared Goff (LAR)
Goff had a full arsenal of weapons available for him in 2019 with Brandin Cooks, Cooper Kupp, and Robert Woods. What did he accomplish with it? A disturbing 22:16 TD:INT ratio. He also had one of the worst QBRs among all starting quarterbacks. While his passing yardage total looks nice on the surface, his receivers led the league in yards-after-catch with 2,310 yards. Combine this with his low-end average throwing depth, and we see his game was dependent on short, quick passes and the receiver to make a play afterward. He is still young and could rebound, but that could mean years of wasting a roster spot.
Drew Brees (NO)
Brees very well may have a few good fantasy years left in him and has been one of the greatest of all time. Having said that, he’ll be 41 next year and is only under contract through 2021. He is still more than serviceable in one of the best offenses in the league with stars like Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara catching the ball. Find a quarterback-needy team in your league to see what you could get in return or prepare to ride off with him into the sunset of retirement in a few years.
Mark Ingram (BAL)
Remember what we said about aging running backs? Remember what we said about touchdowns? Ingram checks two of the biggest lists when looking to sell a running back. At 30 years old and coming off a career-high touchdown season with 15, Ingram’s value hit a peak at a perfect time to get selling value in return. The lure of the Ravens’ offense and his current contract will likely sway a potential buyer over. Time to cut bait before his value plummets completely over the next two years.
Todd Gurley (LAR)
I’m still not convinced that the Rams traded up for Darrell Henderson because they were comfortable with Gurley’s health long-term. Despite another season of high usage and very little Henderson involvement, his totals diminished dramatically from his career trajectory. There appears to be something off in his performance as he also posted some of his worst rushing efficiency metrics in his career. One positive that appears to never change is that when the Rams are at the goal line, he is getting the score. The Rams’ offensive line also played much worse this season and I don’t see that getting fixed in one year unless they invest heavily this off-season. It’s time to move on as his glory days are likely behind him.
Aaron Jones (GB)
I love Aaron Jones as a football player. I think he is an incredible talent that is perennially underused. He’s a great fantasy asset and finished as the PPR RB2 this year. So why is he a sell?
- He likely hit the highest fantasy finish of his career at RB2. Where can his value go other than down? It’s likely at an all-time high.
- His touchdown rate was outrageous and tied for most among running backs at 19.
- For reference, CMC had 19 touchdowns on 403 touches. Jones had 19 on 285.
- Running backs start declining after 26 years old – Jones turns 26 next year.
- Hit a career-high in snap rate at 61%. Year after year he is unrightfully put in a near 50/50 timeshare.
- You should be able to net a king’s ransom for him in any trade you do.
Please note that you should be very much rebuilding and far away from contention if you are even considering trading him.
Kenny Golladay (DET)
As the touchdown reception leader with 11, Golladay is a prime sell candidate. As explained earlier, strong touchdown outliers are nearly guaranteed to come back to earth the following year. While he is still plenty good as a dynasty asset, selling at peak years gives you the best bang for your buck. Just make sure you are getting enough in return to make it worth it as he is still in his golden years.
Julian Edelman (NE)
Believe it or not, Edelman finished the year as WR7. He’s also 33 years old. No need to overthink this. He will probably be the toughest sell among anyone on this list as unless your league mates live under a rock, they are also well aware of his age. His value should have spiked with his nice finish in 2019, but don’t sell him for nothing. Find some contending teams short on the wide receiver position and start fishing by sending out offers.
John Brown (BUF)
What an amazing bounce-back year for Brown finishing as WR20. The Bills and Josh Allen made him their top receiving option and peppered him with 115 targets. However, it seems apparent the Bills want more players at wide receiver after a busy off-season last year. Many 2020 mock drafts already have them taking a receiver with a round one draft pick, at worst in rounds two or three. I expect them to make some free agency moves as well. Turning 30 years old in a few months, he will slowly start to fade out in the coming years to their rookies and free agency additions.
Kyle Rudolph (MIN)
Rudolph hit per game career lows in targets, receptions, and yards. Yes, he’s a great red zone threat, but the Vikings saw the writing on the wall when they drafted Irv Smith Jr. He is rounding out the twilight of his career but saw enough touchdowns and spectacular plays to keep fantasy owners well aware of his scoring potential. Get some rookie picks or youth back in return before Father Time sweeps him away completely.
Others to consider: Travis Kelce (KC) (only if in hardcore rebuilding mode)
Thanks for reading and stay golden! If you like what you learned, follow me @DavidZach16 for more interesting stats and analysis throughout the year.