Your Buy Low and Sell High Targets as the Fantasy Trade Deadline Approaches
The trade deadline in most leagues is coming up either this week or next. What are the last-minute moves you can make to strengthen your team heading into the playoffs or to increase your chances of making the postseason?
- If you’re in a strong position, one in which you know your playoff spot is secure, look to poach players on byes from weaker teams. There will be teams on the playoff bubble in your league that have good players on bye this week. There are six teams out on bye in Week 11. Let’s say a team that needs a win will be losing a Julian Edelman or Nick Chubb this week. As a team that doesn’t have any playoff worries, you may be able to offer a lesser player for an Edelman or Chubb. Granted, this will only work if the bubble team doesn’t have a viable replacement, but they just might not. Perhaps depth is the reason they are on the bubble.
- The reverse is also true. If you’re 4-6 and probably need to win out to make the playoffs, then do what you have to in order to make the playoffs. If you know one more loss will eliminate you, then any trade that ensures a win this week is probably worth it. Worry about Week 12 next week, you need to win now.
- Don’t be afraid to think ahead. Once again, this is for those teams that know they will make the playoffs. Look at the playoff schedules. See what NFL teams you believe have the best schedule for your team’s needs. Try to acquire those players.
- Make sure you have depth at each position but not an over abundance at any one position. If you start three WRs and a flex, there is little reason to have seven WRs on your roster but only three RBs. Don’t be afraid to trade some of that excess depth for additional depth at a position that would help you more.
- Know your rules. In some leagues, you can’t make any waiver claims during the playoffs. I don’t like this rule, but it is out there. In this case you may want to make sure you have a backup QB, TE, and K to cover yourself in case of injury. I hate to do this in leagues in which you have a limited bench, but I learned my lesson the hard way several years back in one league. I didn’t have a backup kicker, thought it was worthless. Sure enough, my kicker got hurt and I took a zero in the semi-finals and it cost me the win (not the championship as I still would’ve lost).
Now we will take a quick look at three players who are buy lows, three that are sell highs, two that you’d like to deal but can’t get equal value for, and three you should hold.
- Golden Tate, Philadelphia Eagles: Yes, I was a little surprised that he only played 18 snaps Sunday night versus Dallas. Still, this is why you can get him for a cheaper price from an owner who might believe this usage won’t change much.
- Keke Coutee, Houston Texans: Coutee is sort of an afterthought due to the addition of Demaryius Thomas via trade. Coutee will play out of the slot, which means Thomas shouldn’t really affect him. Unless you believe Lamar Miller and the run game is going to take off, there should be enough balls to go around for everyone.
- Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals: Fitzgerald finally looks healthy and the Cardinals have finally figured out how to get the ball into the hands of David Johnson. With opposing defenses having Johnson to worry about again, that should open up the passing lanes for Fitzgerald.
- John Ross, Cincinnati Bengals: Yes, A.J. Green is out for another couple of weeks and yes, Ross had a touchdown Sunday, but that was all he did in a game that the Bengals were forced to throw from the outset. If someone wants to pay for him, let them.
- Eric Ebron, Indianapolis Colts: This just may be my inner anger talking as I started Jack Doyle in three leagues this past week. It was a great game for Ebron, but one he is unlikely to repeat, maybe ever. Every Lions fan has to be sick about this.
- Mike Davis, Seattle Seahawks: I’m was in position to lose this week because Russell Wilson threw that last TD pass to Davis. Anyone else but Davis catches that pass and I had a much better chance of winning. Oh well, once Chris Carson is healthy it will be a three-headed monster in Seattle, as all of a sudden Rashaad Penny looks good.
- Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins: It’s really simple, the Dolphins prefer Frank Gore. I don’t know why, yes, Gore is a future Hall of Famer and still somewhat productive, but Drake is the more explosive back and should be getting the majority of touches. But he is not.
- Tom Brady, New England Patriots: Brady will be lucky to remain a Top 12 Fantasy QB after this week and he’s on bye next week. His value is in name only right now. Perhaps you can trade him for something. Maybe he hasn’t been as big a bust as Rob Gronkowski this season, but he’s not that far off either.
- Jarvis Landry, Cleveland Browns: Landry only has 111 yards receiving in his last three games, so I understand the angst among his owners, but what are you hoping for in a deal? You would be selling light. If you can’t get a piece back that you believe would help you win, I’d stand pat and just hope the Browns remember what they have in Landry and that the emergence of Nick Chubb helps the short passing game.
- Tre’Quan Smith, New Orleans Saints: Zero catches Sunday. Yeah, seeing that in the box score after the Saints scored 51 points had to be a gut shot. Still, someone else has to catch the ball in that offense other than Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara, and it won’t be Dez Bryant (IR), and if you think Brandon Marshall is the answer, good luck to you.
- Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts: See Ebron above. Doyle has been Andrew Luck’s BFF forever. Ebron may have been more game specific versus the Jags, or maybe I’m just going down with the ship.