We scour the news around the NFL to bring you what matters most to you and your dynasty team: the most current news on players, both superstars and the relative unknowns, and analysis to decipher the respective situations. These are many of the major stories and are not meant to be an exhaustive look at all the recent happenings around the league.
By now, we know not to take any midseason remarks too seriously, but it was surprising for Tom Brady to tell reporters that there’s "no retirement in my future." He made these remarks last Thursday. Perhaps, these comments came in response to the “divorce” rumors. Many dynasty managers assumed this was Brady’s last season, so this could make him a buy-low. We still have no idea how this will turn out. He will retire soon, whether it is in 2023 or 2024. The Buccaneers are not playing well, which may play into the decision-making.
Last week, Ian Rapoport reported that Washington quarterback Carson Wentz is facing a 4-6-week recovery after injuring his finger in Thursday's win over the Bears. Wentz was placed on injured reserve Saturday after having surgery to fix the injury. He fractured his right ring finger in the game. Taylor Heinicke started Sunday against Green Bay and should be a multi-week fantasy-viable option once the receivers get healthy. The offense has weapons and has shown the ability to put up points.
On Wednesday, Field Yates tweeted, “The Panthers have designated QB Sam Darnold to return from IR.” A team eyeing a quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft will have to decide between two journeymen, Baker Mayfield and Darnold. We expect Darnold to see extended action down the stretch as Mayfield has not looked good. Interim head coach Steve Wilks told reporters that the way P.J. Walker played Sunday, it would be hard to take him out as the starter. Walker did play well in the upset victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. There is little fantasy upside in whoever is under center for Carolina.
Late Thursday night, during the Arizona-New Orleans game, the news broke about the Panthers trading Christian McCaffrey to the 49ers. It was quite the shocker, though not unexpected. Few expected San Francisco to be in the mix for McCaffrey’s services, but we applaud Kyle Shanahan and company for taking a chance on greatness. The rest of the NFC – sans Philadelphia – is underperforming and there is an opportunity for a late surge. Ian Rapoport tweeted the trade compensation, “Full terms: The #49ers get star RB Christian McCaffrey. The #Panthers get a 2nd round pick in 2023, a third-rounder in 2023, and a fourth-round pick in 2023. Plus, a fifth-rounder in 2024.” McCaffrey gives Shanahan a consistent tailback that he has not had. ESPN Stats and Info had some interesting tidbits, “Christian McCaffrey has eclipsed 100 scrimmage yards in 5 straight games, the longest active streak in the NFL” and “McCaffrey has accounted for 39.8% of his team's scrimmage yards this season, which is the highest of any player.” Fantasy managers must decide whether McCaffrey will get the same number of touches in San Francisco as he had in Carolina. Adam Schefter tweeted an interesting fact, “Here’s some of the consistency that SF hopes to get with Christian McCaffrey: Kyle Shanahan is in his 6th year as 49ers’ HC and the Niners have had a different leading rusher in each of his first five seasons. The 49ers haven’t had a 1,000-yard rusher since Frank Gore in 2014.” Yes, the 49ers gave up a lot. They had no 2023 first-round pick after trading up for Trey Lance. After this trade, it appears as though the team will not pick until Day 3 of the draft. However, Schefter added a possible reason why San Francisco was willing to part with the Day-2 selections, “What helped the 49ers pull off the trade for Christian McCaffrey was that they had six extra 3rd-round compensatory draft picks granted to them for losing Robert Saleh to the Jets, Mike McDaniel to the Dolphins and Martin Mayhew to the Commanders in recent off-seasons.” So, it is great that they were rewarded for developing great underrepresented coaching and front-office talent. By the way, the other team in the mix was the Los Angeles Rams. The Rams have always been willing to part with picks.
The New York Jets have been a huge surprise this season. Rookie tailback Breece Hall has been emerging past few weeks. He went down with a knee injury in the victory over the Denver Broncos Sunday and it was later confirmed as an ACL injury. Given the success rates for recovery, Hall makes a great buy candidate for rebuilding dynasty squads. Monday evening, New York traded for James Robinson from Jacksonville. The Jets consider themselves contenders and this trade shows lack of faith in Michael Carter II. We expect Robinson to be the starter and potential bellcow back on a team that loves to run the ball..
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