Welcome to the Dynasty Three & Out, where each week we’ll focus on three players gaining value and three others losing dynasty value based on the latest news and performances on the field.
Note: Any dynasty ADP or dynasty trades referenced in this article can be found at dynastyleaguefootball.com
Leonard Fournette, RB JAX
After a Week One hamstring injury, which lingered all the way until Week Ten, 2018 appeared to be a lost season for second-year RB Leonard Fournette. Fantasy players had already grown frustrated and skeptical of Fournette by the time he returned in Week Ten. Fortunately, Fournette wasted no time in regaining the trust of all dynasty owners. In his three full games this season, Fournette has averaged 27 touches for 119 yards and 1.7 touchdowns. That’s a ridiculous season-long pace of 1,904 yards from scrimmage and 27 touchdowns. With so many missed games, Fournette’s end of season rank will surely not be impressive on its own standing but just over the past three games, the Jags starter is the RB5, averaging over 25 fantasy points per game.
While Fournette’s dynasty ADP fell nearly a full round as a result of his missed time, dropping him from 13 overall to 23 overall according to November dynasty ADP, he’s more likely to settle in as a mid-second rounder in upcoming dynasty startup drafts.
Christian McCaffrey, RB CAR
In Week Twelve against the Seahawks, Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey rushed for 125 yards and caught seven passes for a total of 112 yards. This was only the thirty-fourth time this has been accomplished and only the third time this decade. RBs Todd Gurley and Arian Foster previously hit the mark. McCaffrey also scored twice, giving him nine touchdowns in the past five games. Even after a successful rookie season, there was doubt in the dynasty community about McCaffrey’s role and potential as a ball carrier. Entering the season, McCaffrey seemed to be lost in the depth of the past two rookie RB classes, reaching an ADP peak of 14 overall. His on-field performance has been a pleasant surprise, including seven RB1 performances. In fact, McCaffrey’s “worst” game this season was his Week One RB21 game in which he totaled 95 yards from scrimmage. That has boosted McCaffrey solidly in the top 12 overall and he currently ranks ninth overall per the most recent dynasty ADP.
Baker Mayfield, QB CLE
To the surprise of no one, Browns rookie QB Baker Mayfield is thriving now that he’s away from the influence of former Cleveland HC Hue Jackson. Jackson was reluctant to even allow the top overall draft pick onto the field, infamously not giving Mayfield any first-team reps throughout training camp. Things eventually changed once veteran QB Tyrod Taylor suffered an injury. Mayfield played six games under Jackson, throwing eight touchdowns and six interceptions while posting a high FF rank of QB6 with all other weeks at QB15 or worse. After the Browns’ Week Eight loss, Jackson was fired. In the three games since, Mayfield has weekly fantasy finishes of QB13, QB5 and QB4, pending Monday Night Football. With several veterans faltering this year, Mayfield is essentially locked into a top-ten dynasty quarterback rank. Since Jackson was canned, Mayfield is the QB8, notably outscoring players like Russell Wilson and Cam Newton.
Golden Tate, WR PHI
It has been a difficult season for veteran WR Golden Tate. A victim of the Lions movement towards a run-based offense, Tate was very inconsistent early in the year, mixing in a pair of WR1 games with others well outside of the WR3 range. Things seemed to be looking up when Tate was surprisingly shipped to the defending Super Bowl champion Eagles at the trade deadline. That hasn’t been the case at all. In three games with Philadelphia, Tate has weekly fantasy ranks of WR73, WR44 and WR54, pending MNF. Tate’s dynasty value was already set to take a hit after he turned 30 years old prior to the season but that fall has been hastened by his poor play. Tate’s current ADP of 75 overall and WR37 is his lowest since November of 2016. Our own Evan Silva recently detailed the negative impact the Tate trade has had on all involved.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Weeks 10-12 fallout from <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Eagles?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Eagles</a> trade for Golden Tate:<br><br>* 97 scorelesss yards on 20 targets from Tate<br>* Less usage of Dallas Goedert (5 targets in 3 games)<br>* Less usage of Alshon Jeffery (targets way down)<br>* -45 point differential since Tate was acquired</p>— Evan Silva (@evansilva) <a href="https://twitter.com/evansilva/status/1067122239101984768?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 26, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Sterling Shepard, WR NYG
Speaking on inconsistent receivers, few have been more frustrating this season than Giants WR Sterling Shepard. After a productive beginning to his career, even battling through an injury last season, Shepard was expected to take the next step forward in 2018. He does have a pair of top ten fantasy performances this year but in six of his eleven games, he’s finished as the WR40 or worse. Last offseason, Shepard’s dynasty ADP climbed as high as 60 overall, making him the WR31. Now, he’s down to 92 overall and WR46. There is reason for hope for Shepard and the entire Giants Offense, pending a quarterback change in 2019. Until then, Shepard’s value will continue to fade.
Marvin Jones, WR DET
Andy Dalton, QB CIN
Jack Doyle, TE IND
Normally, we have to wait for the day after Week Seventeen for “Black Monday” but for some fantasy teams, it may feel like that came early as multiple teams placed key contributors in the injured reserve list on Monday. Most notably was the Lions move of adding veteran WR Marvin Jones to the IR with a knee injury. Jones suffered the injury in Week Ten, when he was the WR27, and there was an immediate concern it could be a season-ender. The Lions tried to give him a couple of weeks but as the losses piled up, this move made sense. Breakout WR Kenny Golladay will now have QB Matthew Stafford to himself.
Bengals QB Andy Dalton left the team’s game after a poor snap resulted in a turnover and a thumb injury. Cincinnati wasted no time in placing the veteran on the IR, ending his season. Dalton was quietly having a solid season, ranking as the QB16 overall and posting four QB1 games on the season. He’ll be replaced by backup QB Jeff Driskel and some are already speculating this could signal the end of Dalton’s Cincinnati tenure.
Finally, the Colts placed TE Jack Doyle on the injured reserve list after he suffered a kidney injury in the team’s Week Twelve game. This hurts Doyle’s dynasty value but is a major short-term boost for TE Eric Ebron, who has been a top-five fantasy scorer when Doyle has been out of the lineup. Ebron has 12 touchdowns already this season.