Each week, Footballguys staff members will share the big movers in their respective Dynasty Rankings. Since the contributors will rotate, please check in weekly. The focus of this article will be on the “why” more than the movement itself. Dynasty Rankings are fluid and we hope that sharing the rationale will help you in your quest to create dynasties with all your teams. The diversity of rankings will result in a variety of opinions weekly.
Jalen Hurts - The Eagles are surprising a few of us by winning well. Some of the credit goes to the excellent performance by the defense, but Jalen Hurts is more than deserving as well. With more than a third of the season still to play out the likelihood of Philadelphia carrying Hurts into 2022 becomes higher every game. As a fantasy option, he finally gets some credit from me, purely from the rushing numbers. As a passer, we need more time. He has exceeded 200 passing yards only once in the last 7 weeks and has only six passing touchdowns over the same time frame.
Taylor Heinicke - Starting as a fill-in for Ryan Fitzpatrick, Taylor Heinicke has started to push for a more permanent role as the team starts to find its groove. As a fantasy option, he is currently a nice bye week fill-in or starter in two QB leagues. He is accurate, good in the pocket, and not afraid to run. In deeper leagues, he presents as a nice keeper and moves well inside my top 30 quarterbacks
Mac Jones - The most impressive rookie quarterback to date has been Mac Jones. He is playing well within a proven system, but lacking the weapons to become a fantasy dominant quarterback. He is well worth investing in dynasty leagues as the team develops its passing game. The lack of rushing yardage is going to limit his upside, but as a long-term project, he should provide consistent numbers. Moves to number 13.
Russell Wilson - Wilson drops a few spots to QB12. He is a tough player to value right now given his uncertain future in Seattle and his poor play in recent weeks. Also, Wilson turns 33-years old this week. For a player who relies so heavily on escaping the pocket to create many of his big plays, you have to wonder if his advancing age is more of a negative than it would be for a pure pocket passer.
Mac Jones - Jones moves up to QB13. There are still some concerns about his fantasy upside but he at least looks like he is going to be the long-term answer for the Patriots. Even if he never emerges as a fantasy star, there is real value in Superflex leagues to having a young starter you can feel safe relying upon over the longer term.
D'Andre Swift - A few weeks ago the lack of rushing numbers from D'Andre Swift had me concerned about his long viability. The last two weeks have put to bed those concerns. His fantasy numbers were previously boosted by inflated usage in the passing game. The absence of Jamaal Williams has helped, but it will be interesting over the next few weeks if we see the split in numbers like earlier in the season now that Williams has returned. I have finally moved Swift to an RB1.
Saquon Barkley - The Bucs defense is notoriously tough to run against and in his comeback game, Saquon Barkley struggled to make an impact. The true test will come in the next few weeks, but I have seen enough to be concerned long-term. His career looks like it will go down as unfulfilled potential due to injuries and a poor offensive line. The journey isn’t finished, but I would sell if others offer a high price. He moves down.
Jonathan Taylor- Taylor moves up to RB1 in all formats. He has been dominant in recent weeks and the Colts are finally using him as a true three-down workhorse.
Josh Jacobs- Jacobs falls all the way to RB25. He just does not look like the same player as he did two years ago as a rookie. It is impossible to trust him in your starting lineup right now and it is unclear what would have to change for him to get his career back on track.
D'Andre Swift- He moves up to RB4 after back-to-back monster weeks. As with Taylor, we are finally seeing Swift emerge as a true three-down workhorse. The fact he is putting up numbers in a woefully bad offense is especially impressive.
Deebo Samuel- Samuel moves up to WR10 on my list. He is 25-years old and keeps putting up monster numbers week after week. His recent numbers may be slightly inflated due to the 49ers running back injuries but Samuel was regularly getting a few carries every game as a rookie also.
Elijah Moore- I moved Moore up to WR23. We are starting to see him emerge as the top weapon in the Jets' passing offense. The biggest question for Moore will be whether he can build upon his recent momentum once Zach Wilson returns.
Brandon Aiyuk- Aiyuk finally seems to be out of Kyle Shanahan’s doghouse and has had two strong games in three weeks. It was a reminder of how talented Aiyuk is. He moves up to WR33.
Elijah Moore - It looks like the Jets have finally figured out what to do with Elijah Moore. The most obvious concern to me is that he has done this without the guy he is supposed to develop with, Zach Wilson. With Joe Flacco, Josh Johnson, and Mike White, Moore is averaging 6 receptions for 84 yards and a touchdown a game. He shoots up the rankings, but I am wary about a Wilson return.
Dez Fitzpatrick - Before his injury and then the trade for Julio Jones, Dez Fitzpatrick was seen as a fantasy sleeper this year. He probably will not be on a lot of dynasty rosters either. Time to grab him now. The Titans have got 100-yard games out of Marcus Johnson and Nick Westbrook-Ikhine in the last two weeks. Fitzpatrick is by far a better prospect than either of those guys and with Jones a shadow of his former self, it is time to invest in the future.
Michael Gallup - After a lengthy absence due to a calf injury, Gallup will go from projected third choice to the class of the Cowboys passing game for at least a game. This will be an excellent audition for his free agency ticket at season's end. He should waltz into a starting role next year and at age 26 is potentially an elite receiver elsewhere. If you can, grab him now. Moves steadily up my rankings in anticipation.
Kenny Golladay - Only once this year has Kenny Golladay justified his expensive offseason signing. The Giants need a number one receiver and on paper Golladay was that guy. That’s the problem with paper though, it doesn’t always match reality. Golladay moves down my inflated rankings considerably, but maybe it all comes together. The optimist in me hopes that is true, the realist thinks otherwise.
Adam Trautman - After being a training camp darling, Trautman faded from rankings during the preseason. Over the last few weeks, he started to develop into a future fantasy option. Unfortunately, a knee injury has sidelined him, just as he was fulfilling his potential. We probably won’t see him again until 2022 where we begin the adventure again. Keep him tucked away safely.
Zach Ertz - Stuck in no man's lands with the Eagles, his move to Arizona breathed life into his fantasy stocks. A two-touchdown performance against the Seahawks solidified that opinion. Whether his numbers keep him as a fantasy starter beyond 2021 remains to be seen. He just turned 31 and could land anywhere next year. If he extends with Arizona his numbers should push him close to a TE1 for at least another year. He moves back inside my top 20.
Pat Freiermuth- He moves up to TE7. There is still a big gap between him and my TE6 but Freiermuth belongs at the top of that next tier based upon how well he has played as a rookie. Given the difficulty of the transition to the NFL at the position, we should grade on a bigger curve for rookie tight ends than any other position. From that perspective, Freiermuth is passing with flying colors.
Zach Ertz- He appears rejuvenated after the trade to Arizona and profiles as a solid TE1 option the rest of the season. Given how few tight ends you can trust in your starting fantasy lineup at this point, that has real value. Based upon his early success for the Cardinals, he is also a candidate to get a contract extension after the season. He moves up to TE15.
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