Fantasy Football Dynasty Report for Week 16
Welcome back to the Dynasty Report, Footclan!
As the year progresses, dynasty values will continue to fluctuate as injuries occur, depth charts are adjusted, and rookies emerge. Keep in mind that managing a dynasty team will require year-long engagement, with a balanced view of your team’s short and long-term outlook. Therefore, each week I will be highlighting some of the dynasty risers and fallers in the form of a Dynasty Stock Report. My hope is that this article can be a go-to resource on your journey to a dynasty #FootclanTitle. In addition to the Dynasty Stock Report, you will also find an updated Rookie Opportunity Dashboard (market share, red-zone stats, etc.) along with either a 2022 prospect breakdown, a dynasty strategy discussion, or a player to stash for the future.
Let’s dive in
Rookie Opportunity Dashboard: Week 15
Below you will find a summary of each rookie’s performance and usage from this past week. Because we have a couple of games on Tuesday, stats for those matchups will be reflected on the Dashboard by Thursday morning at the very latest. For reference:
- Expected Fantasy Points is a value calculated based on a player’s usage in their offense. The more high-value opportunities they receive (deep targets, red-zone opportunities, etc.), the higher their expected value will be.
- FPOE stands for Fantasy Points Over Expected and signifies efficiency relative to a player’s usage. FPOE is the difference between a player’s actual PPR points and their expected PPR value.
- Red-Zone Opportunities include targets and rush attempts. For quarterbacks, pass attempts are included as well.
If there are any specific metrics you would like me to include, or if a rookie was excluded, let me know on Twitter @FF_MarvinE.
A Few Rookie Observations from Week 15:
- Mac Jones threw the ball 45 times for a total of 458 air yards. Despite the higher volume, this was one of Jones’ most inefficient games, scoring a -4.5 Completion Percentage Over Expected (CPOE) and 5.3 fantasy points BELOW expected
- In Michael Carter’s return from injury, he only received 33.3% of the team’s carries. For comparison, from weeks 3 through 10 prior to his injury, Carter averaged 60.8% of the team’s carries while ranking as the RB19 in PPR points per game (15.2)
- Kyle Pitts averaged the highest expected fantasy value among all rookie skill position players this week. His 24.1% target share is his 3rd highest weekly total this season
- Amon-Ra St. Brown was by far the most impressive rookie wide receiver this past week, ranking as the WR7 in Expected PPR points (19.6). More on his recent production in the Dynasty Stock Report
2022 Prospect Breakdown
Jahan Dotson – Penn State, WR
In the last two editions of the dynasty report, I highlighted two players, Chris Olave and Treylon Burks, who are near locks to be drafted within the first round. And while Jahan Dotson – wide receiver out of Penn State – seems to have a wider range of outcomes, he is the perfect example of why this WR class is a lot deeper than we might think. Despite only receiving a 24.5% chance of being drafted in the first round, per the NFL Mock Draft Database, there are a lot of positives within his production profile and skill set that should make him an intriguing fantasy wide receiver. First off, similar to Olave, Dotson is a 4-year player who did not immediately break out in his college career. In fact, in his first two seasons, he only totaled 691 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns in 21 games, playing behind both K.J. Hamler and Pat Freiermuth. It wasn’t until his third year at Penn State that he assumed a more prominent role as their lead receiver. As a result, his breakout age of 20.5 only ranks in the 50th percentile according to PlayerProfiler.
Generally, when a wide receiver is not an immediate contributor, you want to see them take full advantage and truly dominate when their opportunity finally arrives. That is exactly what Dotson did in his final two years at Penn State. Starting in his Junior year, in 9 games, he averaged 98.2 receiving yards per game on a 38% receiving yards market share. Even more impressive, he accounted for nearly 47% of their receiving touchdowns. Combining those values, Dotson’s 42.5% receiving dominator rating stands out as one of the most productive WR seasons in 2020. In 2021, Dotson would maintain that level of production. In 12 games as a Senior, his receiving yards average remained mostly unchanged at 98.5 per game, despite a slight decline in market share (36%) due to the improved Penn State passing offense. Where Dotson did improve is in his touchdown market share at 50%, averaging one score per game in 2021. So despite a relatively unchanged dominator rating at 43%, Dotson still had a very productive senior year for Penn State.
In short, Dotson does not have a perfect profile but his dominant final two years place him in the upper tier of this WR class. Coupling his production with his versatility as a returner, outside receiver, and occasional rusher, Dotson could be a swiss army knife for whoever lands him in the draft. And considering he is currently projected to be a late first-round pick, Dotson could find himself on a contending team such as the Chiefs or Packers with an opportunity to make an immediate impact in his rookie season.
Dynasty Stock Report
The Detroit Lions have had a tumultuous season as they started the post-Matthew Stafford era of their franchise. After going winless in their first 11 games this year, the Lions are actually trending in the right direction as they have won two of their last three games. A key contributor in that timespan has been their 4th round rookie wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, who has led the team in receiving yards since week 13. In addition to being an integral part of their offense, St. Brown has emerged as one of the most productive wide receivers over the last three weeks. In the month of December (3 games), St. Brown is the:
- WR5 in PPR per game (21.2)
- WR11 in Receiving Yards per Team Pass Attempt (2.35)
- WR7 in Yards after the Catch per game (34.3)
- WR9 in Targets per Route (0.32)
- WR4 in Target Share (34.3%)
To expand on that last statistic, the only wide receivers that have a higher target share than St. Brown since week 13 are Justin Jefferson, Michael Pittman, and Cooper Kupp. And as you can see in the chart below, St. Brown’s expected PPR value ranks ahead of Davante Adams and only slightly behind Chris Godwin. While the production has been encouraging, keep in mind that both T.J. Hockenson and D’Andre Swift have missed multiple games. In addition, considering their lack of depth at the wide receiver position, it would not surprise me if Detroit used one of their first-round picks on one of the top prospects in this class. And so unless this offense as a whole takes a step forward (potentially with a new quarterback), St. Brown is unlikely to command the same level of usage heading into the next season. For now, his dynasty stock continues to rise as he approaches a favorable matchup against the Falcons in week 16.
If you were following the Tampa Bay matchup this past week, you already saw the news that Chris Godwin, Mike Evans, and Leonard Fournette all suffered injuries that ended their week early. But while Evans and Fournette are expected to return at some point this year, Godwin will miss the rest of the season due to an unfortunate ACL tear. Not only will this injury impact his 2021 campaign, per Matthew Betz, this could also jeopardize his production in 2022. And with free agency looming for Godwin, his dynasty value will be heavily affected by his recovery and landing spot. It truly is an unfortunate injury for Godwin who returned on a franchise tag and has been one of the more reliable fantasy wide receivers in the league. In 14 games, Godwin has finished with double-digit PPR points in all but three matchups, while ranking as a WR2 or better in 57.1% of those games. And even if we include his week 15 matchup in which he left early, Godwin still ranks as the WR8 with 17.3 PPR points per game this season.
As mentioned previously, Godwin’s dynasty value will be heavily dependent on the contract that he signs in 2022. Ideally, he remains with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where he has carved out a fantasy-friendly role as their possession receiver. This of course assumes that Brady will play for another five years as he continues to drink from the fountain of youth. And while there are plenty of other appealing landing spots, the concern remains whether a team will want to invest in a player coming off of an ACL tear. Regardless, Godwin is only 25 years old, which means he should still have plenty of productive (and hopefully healthy) years ahead of him. And considering his past production (three top-15 campaigns in PPR per game scoring), Godwin should be a trade target for all rebuilding teams who are still a year or two away from truly contending.
Justin Herbert entered his second season coming off of a historic rookie year in which he averaged 22.19 points per game, ranking as the QB7 in 15 games. To put that number into perspective, in the Super Bowl era, Herbert’s first season ranks 3rd among all rookie campaigns in fantasy points per game only behind Cam Newton and Deshaun Watson. Naturally, the expectations were relatively high heading into his second season. But through 15 weeks, he is on pace to exceed those numbers, setting career highs in several metrics. So far this season, Herbert ranks:
- QB2 in Fantasy Points per game (22.8)
- QB3 in Passing Attempts per game (38.7)
- QB6 in Touchdown Rate (5.9%)
- QB4 in Passing Yards per Game (289.9)
- QB9 in Adjusted Net Yards per Attempt (7.7)
What has allowed Herbert to produce at such a high level is the passing volume for this Chargers offense. Under new head coach Brandon Staley, the Chargers are averaging the 5th highest early-down passing rate at 59%, which is a significant improvement from last season when the team ranked 18th in the league at 52.2%. Couple Staley’s pass-friendly scheme with elite weapons Keenan Allen and Austin Ekeler, and you have an offense that should be one of the best in the league for the foreseeable future. As a result, Herbert is quickly becoming one of the most valuable quarterbacks in the dynasty landscape. And while he does not have the same upside as some of the premier rushing quarterbacks in the league, Herbert still provides dynasty managers with top-tier QB1 upside in any given week.
In the Super Bowl era, the most productive fantasy QBs through their first two years in the league?
1) Patrick Mahomes (25.5 p/g)
2) Justin Herbert (22.5) 👀⚡️
3) Deshaun Watson (21.8)
Herbert is also the only QB to start his career with two 30+ passing TD seasons.🔥 pic.twitter.com/9OfHy0jIGM
— Marvin Elequin (@FF_MarvinE) December 21, 2021
Despite finishing as a WR2 or better in three of his first four games this year, Sterling Shepard’s season has been derailed by pair of quad and hamstring injuries, forcing him to miss 7 games early on in 2021. Unfortunately, a third injury will end his season prematurely as Shepard suffered a torn Achilles this past week. This severely hurts his dynasty value as he is set to enter his age-29 season in 2022. And after such a major injury, Shepard’s fantasy-relevant days are likely coming to an end. While he did sign a contract extension that could have him linked to the Giants through the 2023 season, it is important to note that his final two seasons (starting in 2022) are non-guaranteed. In other words, the Giants could release Shepard after June 1st and save upwards of $8.5 million dollars in each of the next two seasons. And considering the investments made to Kadarius Toney (first-round pick) and Kenny Golladay (4-year contract), Shepard could be the odd man out in this wide receiver corps. As a result, Shepard might just be borderline droppable in dynasty leagues depending on where he finds himself next season.