Fantasy's reverse stock market: Who are the buy-highs and sell-lows?
If you’ve been playing fantasy football long enough, you’ve heard it a thousand times by now – buy low, sell high. Like the stock market, success in this game often comes down to which owner finds the best value on draft day and throughout the season via trades and waiver wire moves.
However, sometimes it is still OK to buy or sell late. It’s better to be late to the party than to not attend it at all. With that in mind, we take a look at a reverse stock market of sorts. Here are some players that are still ascending and some that have yet to hit rock bottom.
The second-year passer continues to show great strides and added four more passing touchdowns in Monday’s win over the Redskins. He now leads the league with 17 TD strikes, including 11 over his last three contests, sits third with a 10.7-yard average depth of target while ranking fourth in dropbacks (274) and passing yards (1,852).
Wentz has now thrown for multiple scores and/or 300-plus yards in five of his last seven outings. He’s also providing added value as a rusher. He ran for a season-high 63 yards in Week 7 and is third in the league in rushing yards by a quarterback with 196.
The Eagles put some pieces around him this offseason and it’s paying dividends. The time to buy low likely already passed, but expect his stock to continue to rise. Wentz appears to be a sure-fire QB1 at this point and should be a trade target if you’re in need of help at the position. Considering most of his owners drafted him as their QB2 you may be able to get him cheaper than you think.
Many are scared off of the Green Bay offense with Aaron Rodgers sidelined with a broken collarbone and rightfully so. However, one Packer is actually seeing his value on the rise – rookie Jones.
Jones produced 100-plus yards and a touchdown rushing for the second time in three weeks in Week 7’s loss to the Saints and now has surpassed Ty Montgomery in fantasy points for the season in standard formats despite playing in two fewer games. Jones has nine carries of 10-plus yards in 62 attempts whereas Montgomery has just one carry of 10 or more yards in his 60 totes.
He dominated the snaps this past week, playing on 44 of the team’s 55 offensive plays compared to just seven for Montgomery. Jones had 20 touches while Montgomery had just five. With Rodgers sidelined Green Bay is going to have to turn to its running game and defense to shoulder the load and it appears as if Jones is going to be the anchor back.
Hopkins has five touchdowns in his last three games and with Deshaun Watson under center the best football might still be ahead for the Texans’ passing attack.
Coming off a bye week, Hopkins may no longer be at the top of mind for fantasy owners. However, in his three games before taking a week off he pulled in 16 catches on 27 targets and 178 yards.
While it would be nice to see him improve on his 59 percent catch rate, he has pulled in six of his eight red-zone targets. In addition, he continues to display big-play ability with a 15.4-yard aDOT during that span. Hopkins finished as a WR4 in PPR formats in 2015 with a 111/1,521/11 stat line. He’s well off that pace currently for the season, but he still has the look of an elite WR1.
Pryor’s nightmare season in D.C. reached its lowest point on Monday night as he was benched in favor of Josh Doctson. Doctson got the start at the X receiver spot while Pryor remained on the sidelines.
Pryor was in on just 30 of the team’s 64 snaps, all but one of which came in the second half as the Redskins were playing from behind. He finished the game with just two catches on four targets for 14 yards.
He has now gone five straight contests with three or fewer catches and scored just one touchdown while averaging 31.4 yards per game in that span. Pryor, who was going as high as Round 3 late in the summer, is arguably the biggest fantasy bust of 2017. The Redskins only signed him to a one-year deal this offseason, so don’t expect them to feel obligated to keep Pryor in the mix.
After scoring four times in the first two games of 2017, Gillislee hasn’t sniffed the end zone since. Now it appears as if he has been passed up on the depth chart by Dion Lewis.
He only played on 13 snaps in Week 7 against the Falcons, carrying the ball a season-low eight times for 31 yards. Lewis had 14 touches to Gillislee’s eight touches against the Falcons. In addition, he has yet to be targeted in the passing game.
With Rex Burkhead now back in the mix as well and James White locked in as the team’s passing-down back, the opportunities for success in the Patriots’ backfield are drying up quickly for Gillislee. He can be cut in most PPR leagues and is a RB4 at best right now in standard formats.
Martellus Bennett, TE, Green Bay Packers
All pieces of the Green Bay passing game took a hit in terms of fantasy value when Rodgers got hurt and Bennett’s value was fading even before losing the Pro Bowl passer.
Bennett led the team in receiving in Week 7 against the Saints, but that is more of statement of how bad the team’s passing attack is sans Rodgers, considering Bennett only had two catches for 17 years. The 30-year old tight end has yet to find the end zone this season and is still searching for his first double-digit fantasy output in a Packers’ uniform.
The tight end position has been a mess all season for fantasy owners with very few standout performers. Still, Bennett ranks as TE29 in PPR leagues and TE44 in standard formats through seven weeks. It’s time to move on for owners still holding out hope.