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Players on the Move – 9/16/22

@thedynastyrobot is here to discuss the swings in values within the dynasty market

To keep our finger on the pulse of the dynasty community, I have included this week’s players with the most significant moves in value determined by consensus rankings.  A value-above-replacement “Reserve” system derives player value. The system values a “start 9” 12-team league along with each starter’s back up for a total of the top 216 (18*12) players.  See my previous article on how to value players to further understand this system.  The below summaries shows the new value in dollars, change in value in dollars, and % change in value for each player.  Note that rankings become available each Friday. There is a natural lag in this data which will not include the player’s current week’s performance.

Top 3 Largest Gains with 10%+ increase in value

Saquon Barkley

Saquon had a rough and injury filled 2020 and 2021. After bursting onto the scene in 2018 as a first round NFL pick, he held the RB1 spot in fantasy in PPR format.  He followed up 2018 with another top 10 season in 2019 maintaining his top overall dynasty rank.  Saquon only saw the field for a little over one game in 2020.  Worse yet, 2021 saw his backup Devontae Booker outperforming him based on their overall PFF grade.  There was a lot more hope than hype as he approached the 2022 season.  In week 1, Saquon seemed to be in 2018 form, leading the position in fantasy points.  His gaudy stat line of over 9 yards per carry and 7 targets have dynasty managers salivating.  Only time will tell if he truly remains a premier back and can make it through a full season healthy.  Its likely we see his value continue to trend upward so now would be the time to make a move if you are interested.

A.J. Dillon

Dillon has been in a committee at best behind Aaron Jones.  Each year the dynasty community claims it will finally be the year he takes over as lead back.  He only earned half the snaps five times last year.  However, this year he is starting off on the right foot.  He received 51% of snaps in week 1 to Jones’ 61%.  While I dont believe short of an injury he will takeover lead back duties, it seems he is headed towards a more even split this year.  More importantly, he received 19 to Jones’ 11 in opportunity based expected points (OEP).  OEP is based on how valuable each touch is from a fantasy standpoint and is a metric created by Joe Sydlowski and Tan Ho that was featured in a recent FiveThirtyEight article.  If Dillon can continue his week 1 momentum with his 91 all purpose yards and a score, he should be worthy of a much higher price.

Jerry Jeudy

As the 15th pick in the NFL draft, Jeudy had high expectations. However he fell flat in his first year finishing 47th in PPR formats. He followed up his rookie season missing 7 games in 2020 with no strong weekly performances. Now with Russ passing to him in this new look Denver offense, Jeudy went 4 for 7 with 102 yards and a TD in week 1.  He can continue this momentum and see a similar target share.  There is a large run up in price available for Jeudy and should be seen as a buy candidate.

Bottom 3 Largest Losses with 10%+ decrease in value

CeeDee Lamb

While not quite hitting the 10% mark, is on the list for how notable the drop is.  Coming into the season, many predicted that this would be the year he finally broke out. There has been talk of a potential top 6 upside season as anticipation was building.  A week later, CeeDee is ranked 78th in PPR leagues at the position and down a starting QB for likely at least 4 weeks, down from the initial 8-week diagnosis.  He went 2 for 11 garnering 29 yards.

I believe he can still improve on his 19th-ranked finish last year but it will be an uphill battle.  On the positive side, the targets are there for the taking.  Cooper Rush performed decently well last year and in his limited time this year.  While certainly not Dak, he is seemingly a decent enough QB to keep the team competitive.  CeeDee has been an overrated player.  However, now would not be the time to panic and sell low.  There is likely a better exit point on the horizon and I would at least wait until Dak is back before considering a sell.  We should test out our leaguemates to see if anyone is ready to panic so we can take advantage of this falling asset.

Cam Akers

Akers was a 2020 rookie darling receiving significant playing time towards the end of the year.  He put up double-digit fantasy totals in weeks 12 through 14.  He suffered a preseason Achilles tear in 2021 which had been viewed as a career death sentence at the RB position. However, he was miraculously back on the field for the final week of the regular season in a limited capacity.  The hype train was building during the offseason as his value was approaching that of preinjury status.  However, week 1 saw a shocking 3 rushing attempts for no yards on 12 snaps.  It is unclear if Akers is now in McVay’s doghouse or if he truly has been silently demoted to backup duties for Henderson.  Among all players, owners are likely the most panicked by Akers lack of opportunity.

Allen Robinson

Sticking with the Rams, Allen Robinson had a dismal fantasy performance. He found the field for 45 routes but only being targeted on two of them.  He ended the night scoreless with one reception for 12 yards.  Robinson finished top 10 in PPR leagues, back to back in 2019 and 2020. 2021 proved to be a challenging year with poor QB play and some time off the field in the middle of the season.  With the move to the Rams and a premier QB at the helm, his value quickly rose in the offseason.  At age 29, he will need to rebound quickly to keep any value after this year.

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