Whether you’re buying or selling, here’s a list of players to consider making a move on before it’s too late.
Players to Buy
Derrick Henry (RB – TEN)
If you’re a team that’s in the playoffs already, you should be trading for Derrick Henry. He’s likely going to be a fantasy MVP this year with matchups against the Jaguars, Lions, and Packers in Weeks 14-16. Those might be three of the five best matchups a running back can ask for, and Henry always picks up steam in December.
Allen Robinson (WR – CHI)
We all know the Bears are a pass-happy team and that Robinson is among the league leaders in targets, right? When you take that and add in his playoff schedule, Robinson should be a top-10 receiver for the fantasy playoffs. He’ll go against the Texans, Vikings, and Jaguars in Weeks 14-16. None of those matchups scare you. Instead, they entice you.
David Montgomery (RB – CHI)
If you’re looking to trade for a running back, or add some depth before the trade deadline, making a move for Montgomery would make sense. He’s not someone fantasy managers are excited to roster, as he just doesn’t offer any upside. However, we constantly look at rankings and think, “I really don’t love this player, but given the state of the running back position, he’s ranked as a top-25 option.” Montgomery’s schedule from Week 12-16 is among the best in football, going against the Packers, Lions, Texans, Vikings, and Jaguars in that time. He can be a role player on a fantasy championship team.
Lamar Jackson (QB – BAL)
If you’re looking like a playoff team, a trade for Jackson would be wise. From Weeks 13 through 16, he’ll play against the Cowboys, Browns, Jaguars, and Giants. Jackson is a prime buy-low quarterback.
Jamaal Williams (RB – GB)
With Aaron Jones is back, you may have seen Williams hit the waiver wire in some leagues. While that shouldn’t happen, we know it does. Even if he’s on someone’s roster, go and see what it’d take to acquire him. We already know how things would go down in the Packers backfield if Jones were to miss any time, and that amounts to an RB1 in Williams. These are the types of players who win fantasy championships.
Latavius Murray (RB – NO)
When you make a trade for someone like Murray, you’re trading for someone his manager views as a bye-week filler or RB4 option. Now that most bye weeks are out of the way, your goal should be to collect as many league-winners on your bench as possible. If Alvin Kamara were to miss any time, Murray would be an every-week RB1, which is worth much more than Murray’s bye week filler/RB4 pricetag. His schedule isn’t going to allow you to start him right now, but we’re not acquiring him to be a starter right now.
Players to Sell
Dalvin Cook (RB – MIN)
Look, this doesn’t mean sell Cook no matter what, but if you’re able to get a combination of Derrick Henry and a receiver like Tyler Boyd in exchange for Cook, you may want to consider it. The playoff schedule is brutal for Cook, as he’ll have to play the Bucs, Bears, and Saints run defenses in Weeks 14-16. Those are all bottom-five matchups for running backs, so while Cook will still have value, he won’t be the most valuable running back when it matters most.
James Robinson (RB – JAC)
The tough Week 11 matchup was only the beginning of Robinson’s tough schedule down the stretch. During the two most important weeks of the fantasy season (Weeks 15-16), he’ll have matchups against the Ravens and the Bears, two matchups you don’t want to see for your RB1, which is what Robinson has been to this point. He’s still valuable given his workload, but he won’t carry you to a fantasy championship.
Antonio Gibson (RB – WAS)
It might not be a bad time to sell Gibson, as his schedule is about to take a turn for the worse. He played against the Giants (twice), Cowboys, Lions, and Bengals over his last five games, which have led to great fantasy days. Unfortunately, we don’t have that in Weeks 13-15, as he will play the Steelers, 49ers, and Seahawks over that time. Not only are those tough matchups on the ground, but Washington is likely to be in a negative gamescript, which doesn’t bode well for Gibson’s role.
Todd Gurley (RB – ATL)
He keeps falling into the end zone, which is what’s holding up his fantasy stock, but his inefficiency cannot be ignored. Neither can his schedule, which ranks as the third-toughest in the NFL over the remainder of the season, including another game against the Saints and one against the Bucs, two teams you really don’t want to start running backs against.
D.J. Chark (WR – JAC)
This is the time of the year where you look to the fantasy playoffs. You aren’t aiming to finish in third place, are you? The Jaguars will be playing against the Ravens in Week 15, and then the Bears in Week 16. Those are two of the worst possible matchups available to wide receivers, and we can’t pretend like Chark has been ultra-consistent anyway.
Darrell Henderson (RB – LAR)
Remember how we saw Ronald Jones‘ fantasy value disappear overnight? The same thing can happen to Henderson, who’s stuck in a three-way timeshare with Malcolm Brown and Cam Akers. On top of that, the Rams have the fifth-hardest remaining schedule in football.
Deshaun Watson (QB – HOU)
If you’re looking ahead to the playoffs, you shouldn’t rely on top-six production out of Watson. In Weeks 14 and 15 he’ll play the Bears and the Colts, two of the worst matchups for quarterbacks. Between both teams, they’ve combined to allow just two top-10 quarterback performances all season.
Jerry Jeudy (WR – DEN)
You won’t find a bigger Jeudy fan than me, but if you’re looking ahead on his fantasy schedule, there are going to be tough times. Starting in Week 12, he’ll play the Chiefs (4th-worst matchup for wide receivers), Panthers (9th-worst), Bills (7th-worst), and then Chargers (8th-worst).
Ryan Tannehill (QB – TEN)
We’re starting to see a trend develop with Tannehill and it’s not a good one. His starting left tackle Taylor Lewan was hurt in Week 5 and announced as out for the season. Since that time (span of five games), Tannehill has not thrown for more than 233 yards or two touchdowns. To be fair, he’s played against the Steelers, Bears, Colts, and Ravens during that stretch, but he’s lost the fantasy floor/ceiling he used to have.
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