Three Dynasty Fantasy Football Players To Trade FOR This Offseason
If you are anything like me, you have already started planning out your dynasty fantasy football offseason. If you haven’t started to evaluate your rosters, I suggest you start now. Regardless of how your 2019 season ended (and of course we hope it ended with championships), now is not the time to get complacent. In fact, starting to engage in trades now before rookie drafts and free agency is a pretty ideal time to make trades in dynasty. Other owners are probably not taking fantasy football quite as seriously as they normally do and even if they are, this is the most uncertain window of the football year. Will Derrick Henry be on the Titans next year? I don’t know! Will the Dolphins draft Tua? Was N’Keal Harry encouraging enough to be considered a BUY in dynasty?
These are all important questions. Now, of course, we have you covered with dynasty fantasy football rankings but I encourage all of you to actively project out players and develop your opinions. The purpose of articles like this is to add some color to the rankings and help you think constructively about your rosters and the range of outcomes for each player on your roster (and the rosters of others). The following players are all guys that I will be sending out trade offers for over the next few months of the offseason and be looking to draft above market in start up dynasty leagues this offseason.
Three Dynasty Fantasy Football Trade Targets
Noah Fant, Tight End, Denver Broncos
Fant was a player that I was higher on than the market during the NFL draft and his rookie season as well. I was one of very few dynasty fantasy analysts who had Fant ranked ahead of his college teammate T.J Hockenson as a prospect and after their rookie season, it should be clear why Hockenson is likely a superior NFL player because he is really a third tackle in the running game but Fant is the superior pass catcher. In 16 games, Fant was targeted 66 times and gained 562 yards while scoring three touchdowns. Fant became only the 13th tight end in NFL history to have more than 60 targets and 500 receiving yards as a rookie tight end.
His closest comps as a player are Aaron Hernandez (yikes) and Jermichael Finley both of whom are very good comparables. Fant did not have a Rob Gronkowski-level rookie season but building on 99th percentile speed and size at the tight end position while also getting on the field right away and performing as a pass-catcher in a below-average passing offense makes me very bullish on his future. If Fant was a rookie in this class, he would be worth a late first-round pick especially as this class has gotten a little weaker with a few key players like Chuba Hubbard and Travis Etienne returning to school. Fant is a clear top-ten tight end in dynasty and is a top trade target.
Michael Gallup, Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys
There are a few clear key reasons to be buying Gallup at the top end range of his outcomes. The first is that he is already at his peak age/performance. You are not buying future production, he is in his main window of production right now as a third-year wide receiver who is about to enter his age 24 season. If you trade, for example, Christian Kirk and a 2021 first for Michael Gallup, I think that would be an equitable trade that is both a win-now trade and gives you a starting player for the next five-seven seasons. The second buying reason on Gallup is: he might straight up be the WR1 for the Cowboys in 2020. Amari Cooper is a free agent and is not a lock to be back with Dallas in 2020. The final reason is that Dallas was the best offense in football in 2019 (finishing top of the league in yards per play) and they will be retaining their offensive coordinator and likely getting better at TE with Jason Witten leaning towards retiring or moving on.
While Gallup doesn’t have insanely good career comps the way the younger Amari Cooper did, he still is in a productive bucket of players. Through two NFL seasons, his closest comp is Stefon Diggs. At age 23, Diggs had 196 targets to Gallup’s 181. Diggs had 1,623 receiving yard to Gallup’s 1,614 and seven touchdowns to Gallup’s eight. The players closest to Gallup in before-age-24 yards per target through two seasons are DJ Moore and DeSean Jackson. The portrait I am painting here is a simple one: Gallup has had good-to-great production as a young player in an elite offensive environment. His ceiling is not currently being captured by the dynasty fantasy football market.
Darrell Henderson, Running Back, Los Angeles Rams
So my proposition is this: if you just sent out super buy-low offers on every player LIKE Darrell Henderson and you got, let us say, 20% of them accepted over the long run, you’d turn a profit. Thinking of the best way to approach Henderson’s range of outcomes, I diagnosed the situation by running a draft finder search on Pro Football Reference for the following: running backs drafted between picks 35 and 80 overall (Henderson went 70th overall to the Rams) from the years 2000-2015. Of those 62 players, 14 of them saw over 1,000 NFL carries, 40 of them started 10 or more NFL games and some of the players who meet neither criteria posted fantasy-relevant seasons (Shane Vereen, Montario Hardesty, Daniel Thomas, Montee Ball). Of all of these players, there were fewer than 10 who were straight-up useless busts.
So is Henderson part of the group of busts? Things certainly do not look great but it might just be easier to pretend that Henderson did not play at all as a rookie and using it as a redshirt year. The Rams threw to their running backs less often than every other team in the NFL last year after heavily targeting their RBs in 2018. No one really knows the story of what happened to the Rams offense but year over year but there was a dramatic fall that certainly was not Henderson’s fault (though it was clearly Henderson’s fault that he couldn’t pick up the Rams’ blocking schemes). My sense is that Henderson could be had for a mid-second round rookie pick plus some sort of stable veteran WR that your roster might not in fact need and that sort of risk is a worthwhile gamble.