With Week 4 in the books, everyone except the Packers and Eagles has now completed a quarter of their season. Depth charts are playing themselves out, and we can begin to see who is for real, and who isn’t. If you take a look back at past weeks, I’ve had my fair share of hits and misses on drop candidates. Last week I suggested Golden Tate, who was benched in the second half, and Justin Forsett, who was just inactive altogether. I’ve also missed on players like Matt Jones and Terrance West. But as the weeks pass, and we gain more and more info, cut candidates will continue to present themselves. So let’s take a look at players who might be on their way out following Week 4.
Owned in 69.9% of ESPN Leagues
Recent reports have surfaced that Lockett is in fact, playing with a PCL injury. This could perhaps explain his lack of usage. He has seen very low snap and target totals, and with Jimmy Graham reasserting himself as a threat, targets may be tough to come by. While he is a threat to score from anywhere on the field, his role is too small and inconsistent for fantasy purposes. Barring an injury to Doug Baldwin, that role doesn’t seem set to increase anytime soon. That is IF his own health cooperates. He’s no doubt an exciting player, and an excellent player to have in Dynasty leagues, but his redraft value is very low at this point. There are plenty of wide receivers out there on waivers who figure to have a role larger than Lockett’s and that’s not saying a whole lot. Exciting player, not exciting redraft prospects.
Owned in 53.4% of ESPN Leagues
After a solid Week 1 performance, and with Coby Fleener gone, many thought Allen could break out this season. However, since that Week 1 game, Allen has failed to accrue more than 3 catches or 35 yards in any single game and has not reached the end zone. He’s also losing pass-game looks to fellow tight end Jack Doyle, which doesn’t bode well for his season long usage. We know what Allen is at this point in the season. A TD dependent tight end, who will disappoint you if he doesn’t find the end zone. Honestly, that’s a fair synopsis of a large portion of the tight end position. However, there are many options available that will see more targets than Allen. As we know, opportunity is huge in fantasy football. Sitting outside of the top 10 in tight end targets, Allen doesn’t have enough volume to produce consistently. Owners should be able to find a better option on the wire.
Owned in 52.1% of ESPN Leagues
Many of us waited for this upcoming Week 5 for the return of Josh Gordon. Well, that’s not happening. Those of us who stashed Gordon, hoping to get a nice boost to our lineups come Week 5 can give up on that. At this point, it’s clear Gordon won’t play in the NFL this season. He remains suspended indefinitely after checking himself into rehab. His football career will not resume unless he can get the rest of his life under control, something that has proven difficult in the past. With a talent like Gordon’s, I hope this isn’t the end of his NFL career. But it is no doubt an end to his 2016 season, and he can be dropped in all redraft leagues. No, he won’t leave rehab and come play this year. It just won’t happen.
Keep an Eye on Carson Palmer…
Owned in 95.2% of ESPN Leagues
First of all, Palmer looks set to miss Week 5’s matchup with the 49ers due to a concussion suffered in Week 4. While he doesn’t have a history of concussions, this is still not something to be taken lightly. The Cardinals are 1-3, and Palmer has 6 turnovers in the past two weeks combined. He has only eclipsed 3oo passing yards once, and it was against the putrid Tampa Bay secondary. In a 2-QB league, you obviously have to hold Palmer. That’s not debatable. But in a 1-QB league, Palmer owners may want to begin to explore a potential backup plan, as Palmer is not trending in the right direction. He’s not a drop candidate yet, but with QB’s being quite readily available in 1-QB leagues, he should be on a short leash.
Keep an eye out for recommended waiver adds from other members of TFA! Playing the waivers is extremely important in all competitive leagues. Don’t be afraid to drop someone just because they are highly owned. Ownership rates can be deceiving. If a player is performing poorly, without a clear turnaround in sight, don’t be afraid to pull the trigger and drop them for a better option. Names and ownership rates don’t win championships. Working the waiver wire wins leagues, and how are you going to do that if you hold on to dead weight players? Check back again next week, and let me know what you think in the comments, or on Twitter, @FF_Schmaltz.