Finding the right information (maybe a cheat sheet?) to help you build the perfect fantasy football dynasty can be very similar to drinking from a fire hose. Yes, the off-season is a lot of fun. Everyone has their go-to few sites that pump out quality dynasty content all throughout the off-season. But then it happens. The redraft noise starts to hit in June. In July everything starts to be about single-year #basic leagues. By August it seems that all of the top sites are calling their “sleepers” who are really just guys you have known about since January.
As dynasty owners, the number of questions we’re faced with on a weekly basis is insane. Every snap, injury, reception, touch, and transaction can have implications extending for years to come. Finding as much helpful information in one place (like a cheat sheet) at the right time can be a real lifesaver.
And that’s what I always wanted. I just wanted simple advice that I could apply every week based on the mayhem that just wrapped up from the previous NFL week. So that’s where this article comes in. This “Dynasty Cheat Sheet” is designed to cover as many players as possible with some practical “do this now” advice to help you build a sustainable dynasty.
So without further ado, let’s dive into the third edition of the Dynasty Cheat Sheet.
Dynasty Cheat Sheet Player Values
Aaron Jones – Hopefully the Packers realize that their second best running back is indeed Aaron Jones and leave Jamaal Williams benched when he returns. Aaron had one of the best NFL Combine performances this spring. He runs fast and aggressive. If Ty Montgomery misses time or is limited expect to see Aaron Jones moving forward. Acquire him with a projected late 3rd round rookie pick or the equivalent.
Kendall Wright – I have seen a lot more flex questions with Wright involved this week. People forget that he actually had a 1000-yard season with the Titans when he stayed healthy. If Mitchell Trubisky performs competently Kendall could and should present the safest flex value at wide receiver for Chicago. He’s still dirt cheap. Get him as a “throw-in” piece in a larger trade to help improve your depth.
Charles Clay – I’m just going to leave this guy in the cheat sheet all season. Clay is a dynasty cheat code. His trade value is still fairly low due to the limited upside of the Bills offense and former perception of his talent. Charles has always been a decent tight end. Now he’s on pace for 72 catches, 908 yards, and eight touchdowns. “Buy high” and watch his value continue to ascend.
Tevin Coleman – Coleman’s price is about to an hit all-time high thanks to the health issues at wide receiver for the Falcons. And don’t get me wrong here. Tevin is talented. However, he’s still only seeing less than 40% of the team’s offensive snaps. Now is when you sell to a Zero RB owner looking for points where he can get them. The Falcons have their feature (or at least “lead”) back and his name is Devonta Freeman. It’s time to admit that and move on.
Marcus Mariota – Week four is the time where many teams stop and take a good hard look at their team. If they decide they’re a competitor, yet own Mariota, they may be willing to part ways for a much lower price than you think. Marcus is “injury prone” apparently, so sell that hard. He’s still a top 10 dynasty quarterback that will continue to grow with his young assets at wide receiver.
Deshaun Watson – All this kid does is win and yet his critics persist. Stop it. Enjoy watching a young quarterback flourish in a surprisingly creative Texans offense. All assets on the Texans get a boost in dynasty value thanks to his success. If you’re in Superflex leagues Watson will be a tough buy. Just wait for a bad rookie week and pounce. He’s only going to get more expensive.
Alvin Kamara – This is what happens when a team takes advantages of a player’s strengths. Mark Ingram will still lead the team in carries moving forward. Kamara will likely finish as the team’s second-leading wide receiver when it’s all said and done. Alvin was one of the most athletic running backs at the NFL Combine in an absolutely stacked draft class. He caught all ten of his targets this past week. This is not a sell candidate. Enjoy the PPR flex value every week.
DeVante Parker – Did you know that DeVante Parker is quietly on pace for a 1200-yard season through the air? Yeah. No one else did either, apparently. He only has one touchdown, and that lack of red zone opportunities should continue in 2017. But Parker is becoming the player many thought he would. Jay Cutler destroys his upside for now, but a savvy dynasty owner would be looking to acquire Parker this instant.
JuJu Smith-Schuster – This kid just threw a Kamehameha Wave after scoring a touchdown. I already liked this kid as a big playmaker for the future, but now he’s just awesome. If your league has deep rosters be looking to add JuJu via trade after a few down weeks that are inevitable for a rookie. JuJu will still just be 25 when Antonio Brown is 34 years old. His time to shine will come.
Alex Collins – Collins boasts the agility of a freight train. If you watch his Arkansas tape you’ll find that he never once actually made a stop and start cut worth admiring. Collins wins with vision, technique, and leverage. If you own him enjoy the production for now. He’s a talent that can take advantage of opportunities but will be replaced shortly.
Joe Mixon – The production hasn’t quite matched the usage, but his breakout is coming soon. Mixon has 21 touches in back to back weeks now for the Bengals. Don’t get impatient. Hold strong or buy fast.
Duke Johnson – Young Duke may never be a feature back, but he is most assuredly the best back in Cleveland. Isaiah Crowell continues to disappoint. In fact, he about got his rookie quarterback killed on a play where he should have at least chipped a blitzing linebacker before sprinting into the flat. Duke is averaging about ten touches per game now and is the only bright spot in the offense. Spend a second round rookie pick or an aging flex to acquire with ease.
Todd Gurley – Gurley has been on this cheat sheet nearly every week pleading with you to buy him. And now it’s too late.
Jason Witten – It looks as though the wheels may have finally fallen off with Witten. Use that to your advantage. He may be close to done, but Witten could still present back-end TE1 value down the stretch. Witten will cost next to nothing right now.
Ameer Abdullah – Here are Abdullah’s total touches from each week this season: 18, 17, 17, 23. And here are Abdullah’s total yards from each week this season: 41, 86, 86, 109. That’s on pace for 1288 total yards from scrimmage. The Lions want him to be their guy. Once the touchdowns start to hit Ameer’s price will soar sky high. If you’re worried about long-term durability, the selling point is soon, but not yet. If you’re a believer, your clock is ticking.
Stefon Diggs – When a former five-star recruit produces adequately on a stereotypically horrific college offense and is then drafted into a situation with no clear lead wide receive there long-term, why are we surprised that he dominates? Stefon Diggs was always going to be a hit. If there was any doubt before, there is none now. Stefon Diggs will be a first-round startup pick next year. Your buy window is gone, sorry. Sell for the farm if you can or ride and enjoy.
Devin Funchess – He has grown as a player, but just like Kelvin is fools gold that will be a frustrating flex most years.
Chris Hogan – Hogan is on pace for 60 catches and 16 touchdowns this season. One of those numbers makes sense. Chris Hogan is a fun best ball toy that is doing his best stud wide receiver impression. The price and perception have gotten out of hand. If I had 20 shares today I would have zero by the end of tomorrow. People forget he is already 29 years old. His value will only go down from here.
Carlos Hyde – The “cut candidate” himself is averaging 21 touches per game and has at least 77 total yards in every single game. Won’t it be something when the 49ers finally have a competent quarterback? Carlos Hyde is still a buy-low candidate. He just turned 26 and has at least a few more solid years ahead of him.
Larry Fitzgerald – Since the expectation is that Larry Fitzgerald (one of the GOATS) may be done after this season or next his price is just fantastic. He’s on pace for a measly 104 receptions yet again. If you’re a competitor you need to be inquiring about the best Larry on the planet (except for my Dad, the real GOAT Lary).
Wayne Gallman – Don’t get too excited. He managed 42 yards on the ground against a defense missing two of the best starting linebackers in the NFL. Wayne Gallman does a lot of things well and nothing great. Expect flex level upside at best. If you got him on the cheap, move him for something better now.
OJ Howard – Hooray! He scored a touchdown. Well, the other tight end, Cameron Brate, did too and he actually had two more targets. Howard still has a long way before he’s used in the passing game on a consistent basis. This was always going to be a situation with some patience required.
Frank Gore – The fantasy community has been collectively disrespectful to this future Hall of Fame player for a few seasons now. Frank Gore is 34 years old and can still touch the ball 15 times each week. Like Larry Fitz, Gore is the perfect depth piece to add for nearly nothing to help you win down the stretch.
TY Hilton – Andrew Luck’s absence has been perfect for fantasy owners that want to grab TY Hilton for a slightly depressed price. It seems that some have already forgotten that Hilton logged at least 1083 receiving yards in each of the past four seasons. Yes, Hilton is still the same guy who led the NFL in receiving last season. Once Andrew Luck returns the window will be closed.
Cheat Sheet Simple Strategies
No cheat sheet is complete without some practical things that can help you accomplish your dynasty goals today.
If you are 4-0, it’s time to figure out how to make a push for the playoffs regardless of what you thought about your team four weeks ago. I don’t mean sell your future. But you need to realize that you could go 3-6 the rest of the way and still limp into the playoffs. It’s time to go win the whole dang thing.
If you are 0-4, I’m sorry, but you are done. Plan accordingly. Don’t be stubborn. I don’t want to hear it. You’re done. You would have to go 7-2 the rest of the way to even limp into the playoffs on a tie-breaker. Even if everything went perfectly from here on out that may not happen. It’s time to plan for the future.
I mention this every week, but it wouldn’t be a dynasty cheat sheet without it. Keep buying picks, no matter what. They’re only going to remain cheap for a few more weeks.
And that’s all folks. Week four of the Dynasty Cheat Sheet is in the books. Feel free to ask questions or suggest players and topics on Twitter @FF_TravisM. This cheat sheet is for you. Let’s build your dynasty all season long!