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Dynasty Veterans to Trade Away (2022 Fantasy Football)

Mar 4, 2022
Mike Williams

Should Mike Williams leave the Los Angeles Chargers in free agency, he could be a good player to trade in your dynasty league.

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The offseason is a time to reflect on your roster. What went wrong or right this past season? Does your team have any significant holes? If you did not win the championship, what pieces do you need to compete for the title in the new season? Is it time to tear it all down and rebuild? Some tough decisions must be made, including determining which players you are willing to trade away.

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Adam Thielen (WR – MIN)

Thielen’s 2021 season started with a bang, catching four touchdowns over the first three games, which included a nine-catch two-touchdown game in the opening weekend. All-in-all, his season wasn’t bad as he caught ten touchdowns in only 13 games. Unfortunately, several factors down the stretch have thrown up some red flags indicating it might be time to sell while he still has value — the first of which is his health.

Thielen only played in two of the final six games of the season and couldn’t finish either of the games he played in. He only managed three catches in those two games for 40 yards and no touchdowns. He will be entering his age-32 season, and while receivers can be productive beyond 32, there is usually a fairly steep drop-off in performance.

Another factor contributing to Thielen’s declining value is the volume and productivity of his running mate, Justin Jefferson. With his 108 catches on 167 targets, it is clear that Jefferson is the clear alpha in this offense and, entering just his age-23 season, will only continue to get better.

With all that said, Thielen still has value — especially for a contending team that needs a solid WR3 or Flex player. Yes, Thielen’s value is probably the lowest it has been in years, but it’s also probably the highest it will ever be again. Selling now would be the optimal time to get back a decent return.

Mike Williams (WR – LAC)

The uncertainty around Mike Williams creates one of those rare cases in fantasy football where the uncertain future could actually increase his value in a trade. There are owners in fantasy that still think Mike Williams can be an alpha wide receiver in the right situation (for the record, I’m not one of them). If you happen to have one of those owners in your league, take advantage.

Williams was the No. 1 receiver in fantasy through the first five games of the season, and then he inexplicably disappeared from Week 6 to Week 17 when he failed to reach double-digit targets and caught only two touchdowns during that span. Luckily, if you’re trying to trade him, he ended the season with a monster game with nine catches on 17 targets for 119 yards and a touchdown.

Everyone believes that Williams will be gone via free agency this offseason, and if there is an owner in your league that thinks he could go to a team and be a No. 1 or even a No. 2 with more volume, I would try to get whatever I can for him. He has been in the league for five seasons, and this was his first season finishing in the Top 24 for wide receivers; in fact, his best finish was WR32 (PPR) in 2018 when he caught a ridiculous ten touchdowns on a mere 43 receptions.

He finished this season in the Top 12 (PPR), but on the strength of those first five games. I’m not ready to put him in my Top 15 wide receivers yet, but I would accept if you could get Top 15 value for him.

Dalvin Cook (RB – MIN)

These next two guys will be a bit controversial, so let me caveat this: if you are a contender and this might be your year, don’t trade Cook just yet. However, if you are a mediocre team or close to going into a complete rebuild, the time to trade Cook is now. Despite having a down season by his standards, he is still a Top 12 running back in an offense that can put up points, and his name value alone should draw some reasonable offers.

Anyone who watched Cook this season will tell you he looked as explosive as ever; he just had some bad luck in the touchdown department. This year’s lack of production was due to his low touchdown total of six, his lowest total since becoming the full-time starter in 2019. He also had his lowest reception total and receiving yards since his rookie season, but these factors aren’t due to him slowing down.

Now, keep in mind, just because Cook is on this “trade away” list, it does not mean you sell him for anything less than his total value — which according to is two mid-1st-round picks in 2022, and you might be able to get more if you’re selling to a contending team that won’t value their picks as much — especially if they are 2023 picks.

Nick Chubb (RB – CLE)

First, I love Nick Chubb, and I think he is one of the best running backs in the league. However, he doesn’t get the passing down work, limiting his value in fantasy. Many people assumed he didn’t get passing down work because Kareem Hunt was just better at it. However, we saw this season with Hunt out for a good portion, Chubb still only had 20 receptions and played only 55-percent of the snaps — splitting time with D’Ernest Johnson, who played the “Kareem Hunt role” when Hunt was out.

Without the passing down work, Chubb becomes very touchdown-dependent. If he scores one or two touchdowns, you’re happy with the performance — if he doesn’t, you’re left wanting more. The coaching staff will remain the same in 2022, meaning they will not change their running-back-by-committee philosophy, which limits the upside that we all know Chubb has. As the RB13 in PPR in 2021, Chubb still has a ton of trade value; however, just like Dalvin Cook, don’t just trade him to trade him. You will need a reasonably significant offer to let him go, but I would start putting out some feelers to see if anyone will bite.

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