With free agent signings cooling down, let’s talk about some of the risers and fallers in dynasty. Which players cashed in and increased their stock? Which players’ value is taking a nose dive and who’s at risk of dropping further?
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Dynasty Risers & Fallers
At this point in the offseason, essentially every article I write leads off with Tony Pollard. Free agency has been kind to Pollard. The Cowboys tagged Pollard, cut Ezekiel Elliott, and the only running back signing the Cowboys have made is Ronald Jones. While it’s unlikely that Pollard has a Derrick Henry type of usage, this is a fantastic sign that the Cowboys want to lead with Pollard in 2023. The Cowboys will likely draft a running back with size to supplement Pollard but for now, Pollard is the man in Dallas.
Justin Fields is an obvious dynasty riser. While it’s difficult for any quarterback to crack the top-3 with Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen and Jalen Hurts leading the way, fantasy managers can rest much easier with Fields moving forward. The Bears affirmed their commitment to Fields by trading away the first overall pick in a quarterback-rich draft class and acquired DJ Moore to serve as Fields’ WR1. With increased weapons and protection up front, Fields has top-5 dynasty upside if he can increase his pass attempts to the 30-35 range and maintain 1,000 yards on the ground.
The Giants signed Daniel Jones to a four-year/$160,000,000 contract. The contract alone makes him a winner but the Giants showed more commitment to passing by adding Darren Waller. Jones quietly put together a top-10 season at the position with a mere 15 passing touchdowns. With a new contract, new weapons, and a second season under Brian Daboll, Jones should continue to make progress through the air and thrive on the ground.
New England has typically maintained a split backfield that limits upside and makes Patriot running backs terrible dynasty investments. But this offseason has been kind to Rhamondre Stevenson and he could break the typical Patriot mold and be their unquestioned RB1. Damien Harris signed with the Bills, the Patriots’ only significant offseason signing was James Robinson and young backs Pierre Strong and Kevin Harris had a combined 28 carries last season. Stevenson has little competition and is climbing the ranks in dynasty leagues.
With Jamaal Williams set to hit free agency, the Lions had the chance to show a commitment to Swift as the lead back. Instead, they signed David Montgomery to a three-year/$18,000,000 contract. This will still likely be a split backfield, however, and if Swift is healthy, his receiving capabilities give him significant upside. Still, Swift will likely concede goal-line opportunities to Montgomery. He will not be the lead back in Detroit’s system and his dynasty value will continue to suffer.
Mike Evans’ dynasty value has taken a massive hit in free agency. The Buccaneers lacked the funds to invest in a top quarterback and the offense will likely be led by Baker Mayfield or Kyle Trask. While Chris Godwin right now is an interesting buy-low candidate, I worry for Evans. Evans will be 30 at the start of the 2023 season and has typically relied on big plays and touchdowns – two things the Bucs will likely struggle with this season.
By the time you read this article, there will probably be another crazy twist in the Lamar Jackson offseason saga. Unless a team presents the right contract and is willing to give up two first-round picks, Jackson will likely remain a Raven. The relationship is extremely fractured and there’s a possibility Jackson could forgo a significant portion of the 2023 season. Jackson’s future is a mystery and his value is dipping as the risk level increases.
The 2022 season was a bit of a letdown for Dalton Schultz but there was a good reason. Schultz played through an injury in the early portion of the season and Dak Prescott missed time. After Prescott returned in Week 7, Schultz was TE6 in average PPG in PPR the rest of the way. Combine that with an overall TE3 finished in 2021, Schultz was set to be the hottest tight end in free agency. However, his one-year/$9,000,000 deal with Houston is very underwhelming. Houston will be led by a rookie quarterback and without a multi-year deal, thus making Schultz’s value in serious danger of taking a significant hit this year.
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