Week 15 is complete, and dynasty movement continues. Injuries have created new opportunities or raised long-term questions about players. Elsewhere young players are solidifying their opportunity for playing time and fantasy production. Weekly the Footballguys staff will share their thoughts on the dynasty ranking movement and answer a critical question you may face.
What player will face the most severe overreaction this offseason from the dynasty community due to injury or underperformance in 2022?
TE Kyle Pitts, Atlanta - The tight end position is an absolute disaster, and Pitts did the impossible with 1,000 yards as a rookie on an otherwise milquetoast offense. Yet, injuries and further team ineptitude washed out his second season completely, and he's gone from the lock top tight end to someone viewed as a potential top-10 guy with upside. Pitts could be a transformative value if you think the Falcons will get a better quarterback next year.
My favorite is always the player expected to make a leap from promising rookie to fantasy stud in year two. Gabe Davis and Branson Aiyuk are two players who had huge expectations in their second season, and they flopped. They have both developed better in their third years and gave starting/flex stats at incredible value.
We have several players who disappointed on their ADPs in year two, chief among them Kyle Pitts, Rashod Bateman, Elijah Moore, and Rondale Moore. Expectations will be diminished in their third seasons for various reasons. We will see how their ADP shakes up for next year, but there is going to be value next year among this group.
WR Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh - Not being overly old, the Steelers' passing game underwhelming as a whole, and (possibly the biggest one) Johnson scoring zero touchdowns through Week 15 are key drivers to Johnson being a value profile in the offseason. Johnson collects targets and is firmly in his prime age window for peak seasons.
QB Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco - Garoppolo's value is going to be all over the place until he's traded or cut. He stepped in for Trey Lance and performed reasonably well - posting 207 completions for 2437 yards and 16 passing touchdowns vs. 4 interceptions in 11 games. But if Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy takes the 49ers deep into the playoffs, the speculation will reach a fever pitch on Garoppolo. Will Lance come back and be the starter? Will the 49ers let Garoppolo go? Will he be able to post similar stats with a new team, or is he just the beneficiary of a system that was built to make virtually any quarterback successful? It's going to be crazy. There are so many possibilities. He feels like a sell-high candidate right now, but there will be a lot of people who will buy on his future upside, while others will be in the wait-and-see mode, and still others will be in the no-chance group. It's going to be interesting, for sure.
Brock Purdy, San Francisco - Purdy has been an efficient game manager in his three-game stretch as the starter. Six passing touchdowns to only one interception is a fantastic start to his career. While the 49ers defense is dominating, he doesn’t have to do much. Everything is in his favor right now. But can he play catch-up? Can he win a game on his own arm? At the moment, his upside is limited, but he definitely is performing better than much more credentialed quarterbacks. He merits a good upgrade.
Gardner Minshew, Philadelphia - With Jalen Hurts likely to miss a game or two, the name of Gardner Minshew comes back into the fold. He will have better weapons than he ever had in Jacksonville and will be more experienced. He could put himself into contention to compete for a starting position next year with solid play. His dynasty potential, therefore, has significant upside, so if you have space grab him now.
Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville - Lawrence has moved up to QB9 on my neutral-settings dynasty rankings with his massive step forward in Year 2. A quality coach, system, and supportive weapons have Lawrence as a mid-QB1. It has been six games and 14 touchdowns since Lawrence's last interception. The quarterback position is stacked at the top, but having Lawrence as high as QB4 this offseason is not outlandish.
Lamar Jackson, Baltimore - Jackson is still not practicing and could miss another week. Tyler Huntley has struggled as Jackson's replacement, but it's clear the Ravens need to take precautions. As a dynasty team manager, you will need to do the same. Jackson hasn't played a full season since his rookie year, and while his point-per-game average remains high due to his rushing, it's hard to build a team around a guy you can't count on for a quarter of your season.
Kyler Murray, Arizona - Murray was placed on IR after tearing his ACL against the Patriots. He expects to have surgery in the next two to three weeks and most likely miss the start of next season. After signing a big contract extension, the Cardinals are committed to Murray for the next few seasons, but from a fantasy perspective, you're going to need other options for at least part of next season, possibly longer.
Justin Fields, Chicago - Fields already has 1,000 yards rushing, and we've seen the light click on after a very slow start. It's remarkable what he's doing considering a historically bad (and injured) receiving corps. Presuming the Bears prioritize the offensive line and receivers in the offseason, Fields could be set for years of must-start value.
Jared Goff, Detroit - I'm still not sure Goff is good enough to be the centerpiece of a perennial playoff contender, but the Lions are happy just to be in the playoff hunt this late in the season. It seems more likely that he'll stick in Detroit as the starter for a handful of years, and given the sorry state of the defense, he should remain a prolific passer. He's not a QB1, but in an era of Superflex dynasty formats, Goff has earned his way into a coveted role of a high-value QB2.
Trey Lance, San Francisco - Brock Purdy's unlikely performance of late reinforces how effective Kyle Shanahan's system is and begs the question of whether any quarterback is overtly valuable in San Francisco. With rumors of Tom Brady heading there next year, Purdy's solid play, and Garoppolo's performance earlier this year, I'm not sure why we should trust Trey Lance will ever get a chance to be the team's new cornerstone.
James Robinson, New York Jets - Robinson being pushed out of Jacksonville with Travis Etienne surging to the lead role early in the season was no reason for concern. However, plunging to the bottom of the Jets' depth chart and being a healthy scratch is reason for concern. Robinson has a profile of production as a lead back but did not have much athletic latitude if losing juice following his season-ending injury in 2021. Robinson has fallen from the RB30s as one of the better-profiled backups in the NFL to the RB50s heading into the offseason.
Zonovan Knight, New York Jets - Knight was outside my top-100 running backs as recently as early in the regular season but now moves into the RB60-65 range. As a 21-year-old rookie, Knight has shown quality power and after-contact ability, even if limited as a receiver by Michael Carter II and Ty Johnson. Breece Hall projects back in 2023 to the lead back perch, but Knight's 2022 season raises his dynasty profile to officially intriguing as an RB2/3 type on an NFL depth chart.
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