As the dust settles in the NFL after the trade deadline and we look at the moves that have taken place the main question on every fantasy footballers lips is “Does this help or hinder me?” Well, the bottom line is that in the short term it can be hard to tell. Players need time to adjust to offenses and that can be frustrating for fantasy owners who were counting on a certain level of production from a player which now seemingly hangs in the balance as they get to know a new system and teammates. If last week you needed to start Golden Tate and then all of a sudden he got traded to Philly and immediately given a week off you might be annoyed with the process more than most, but don’t worry – start your players if you can regardless of where they are now playing. The teams would not have traded for them if they didn’t plan on involving them. And with that being said, let’s look at some players that I like the look of this week.
Andy Dalton (vs. New Orleans Saints)
The Saints are good. Very good. They will probably make it to the Super Bowl. But, they are still giving up the 2nd highest fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, and the most to opposing wide receivers. I fancy Andy Dalton’s chances of success coming off a BYE week.
Nick Mullens (vs. New York Giants)
Nick Mullens burst onto the scene last week dismantling the Raiders to the tune of 34-3 whilst throwing 3 scores and 262 yards with a completion rate of 72.7%. If Mullens isn’t on your fantasy radar yet, he will be soon – grab him whilst you still can.
Aaron Jones (vs. Miami Dolphins)
Jones has now firmly established himself as lead back in Green Bay, and many (including me) have been predicting a breakout game for him for a while. It hasn’t properly happened yet, but this week I see the stars aligning against Miami’s porous run defense.
Dion Lewis (vs. New England Patriots)
Fresh off a win in Dallas, the Titans are feeling like they’re not out the AFC South race just yet. They want to continue this against Lewis’ former team this week and cause an upset for the travelling Patriots. Lewis has had over 280 yards from scrimmage over the past two matchups and I expect to see Vrabel looking to use him further this week.
John Ross (vs. New Orleans Saints)
Did you see my comments about the Saints and what they have given with regards to fantasy points versus wide receivers so far this year? If so, you should also consider this – AJ Green is out for the next two weeks, and John Ross is back from injury. With Tyler Boyd looking to be the #1 against New Orleans, look for Dalton and Ross trying to take the top off the vulnerable defense.
Marquez Valdes-Scantling (vs. Miami Dolphins)
With Geronimo Allison out Valdes-Scantling looks to be the new favorite deep threat for Aaron Rodgers. When you also consider that Miami gives up 20+ yard gains at the second highest rate in the NFL, and Valdes-Scantling runs a 4.37sec 40-yard dash, it could be a nice day for the guy with the coolest name in the NFL.
Adam Humphries (vs. Washington Redskins)
Last week in the NFL showed two things of note: Firstly, the Redskins defense is mortal after all, both on the ground and through the air. Secondly, Adam Humphries is a baller. Securing all 8 of his targets for 82 yards and 2 touchdowns, Humphries made us all take note with some highlight reel plays. Regardless of who is throwing against the ‘Skins, I expect Humphries to be looked for a lot.
Dez Bryant (at. Cincinnati Bengals)
So Dez Bryant is a Saint (in the technical sense that he now plays, finally, in New Orleans…) not only will he now be receiving throws from the most accurate quarterback in NFL history, but he has the chance to quickly ascend to #2 on the depth chart behind Michael Thomas. Whether or not he is utilized this week will be the question. But Amari Cooper and Demaryius Thomas both had great first games for their respective new teams, so why not Dez? If someone let him slip to the waiver wire this season, it would be a smart move to grab him before he reminds others of his relevance.
Jack Doyle (vs. Jacksonville Jaguars)
Jack is back. He is returning from a week off, but before the Colts rested he reminded us of what he could do against the Raiders with a stat line of 6 of 7 grabs for 70 yards and a TD. The Jags, although stingy against wide receivers, are actually pretty soft versus tight ends giving up the 3rd most fantasy points in the NFL to the position.
Vance McDonald (vs. Carolina Panthers)
Vance has been having a tough time of it over the past couple of weeks but I expect a bounce back on Thursday Night Football against the Panthers who have given up the most touchdowns in the league to tight ends and are statistically the worst at defending against the position with regards to fantasy points allowed.
Any team that plays the Buffalo Bills.
The Bills have the worst three quarterbacks in football according to the stats. Their QB ratings are as follows – Peterman (30.7), Anderson (56) and Allen (61.8) they have thrown 16 picks between them so far this year. If you are streaming defenses, just see who is playing the Bills.
Our NFC East reporter is Chris Milner who covers Redskins, Eagles, Cowboys, and Giants. Chris is a Washington Redskins fan who has followed the game since 2011. He is one of our fantasy football correspondents and also co-hosts the ‘Same Level Fantasy Football’ podcast. Follow him on Twitter @chrismilner