Fantasy Football Dynasty Report for Week 6
Welcome back to the Dynasty Report, Footclan!
“You know what the happiest animal in the world is? It’s a goldfish. You know why? It’s got a 10-second memory. Be a goldfish.” – Ted Lasso
Love that show.
After another tough week in fantasy football with several injuries to multiple key players, sometimes we just need to have the memory of a goldfish and swiftly shift our focus to next week. From Saquon Barkley’s ankle sprain to Juju Smith-Schuster’s season-ending shoulder injury, hopefully, you were still able to overcome these injuries to win your week-5 matchups. Regardless, in dynasty football, we get to look beyond just this season. If your team is overwhelmed by injuries, you can still make moves to put your team into dynasty contention – if not this year then potentially in 2022. Stay active in your waiver wire, engage with your league-mates in trades, and continue to pursue a dynasty championship.
As always, 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, each week I will be providing you an updated Rookie Opportunity Dashboard (market share, red-zone stats, etc.) along with one of the following topics:
- Dynasty Strategy
- 2022 Prospect Breakdowns
- Dynasty Stashes
Rookie Opportunity Dashboard: Week 5
Below you will find a summary of each rookie’s performance for the past week. Monday Night Football games may be initially excluded but will be added as data becomes available. For reference:
- Expected Fantasy Points is a value calculated based on a player’s usage in their offense. The more high-value opportunities that 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 5:
- Trey Lance had the 2nd highest expected value among rookie quarterbacks and accounted for an impressive 57% rushing share (16 attempts)
- Davis Mills was the most efficient rookie QB at +15.2 FPOE. Just as we all predicted
- Najee Harris continues to dominate in usage, ranking as the RB1 this week in expected value (27.8)
- In the absence of David Montgomery, Khalil Herbert finished 3rd among rookie running backs in expected value (12.7)
- Volume was never a concern for Kyle Pitts, though week 5 was by far his most efficient week scoring +8.4 in FPOE
- The breakout continues for Kadarius Toney, accounting for a 35% target share and an expected value of 25.4 PPR points
- Amon-Ra St. Brown has quietly improved his usage over the last two weeks. Against the Vikings, St. Brown finished as the WR23 in Expected Value (13.9)
2022 Prospect Breakdowns
Garrett Wilson – Ohio State, WR
Garrett Wilson is having another remarkable season for the Buckeyes, leading them in total receptions (31) and receiving yards (546) in six games this year. Week after week, he continues to showcase exactly why he is currently projected to be one of the top receivers drafted in the 2022 class. And according to the NFL Mock Draft Database, 88.8% of mock drafts have Wilson projected in the first round. From a skillset standpoint, Wilson should provide plenty of versatility as he can be used in motion, in the slot, and out wide. He also boasts an impressive combination of technique and physicality in his route running. He is explosive in and out of his breaks and can shake defenders with seamless change-of-direction in his routes. Wilson also possesses tremendous athleticism, with the ability to make acrobatic catches and create yards with the ball in his hands.
As a freshman, Wilson did not break out immediately, only finishing 4th on the team in receptions and receiving yards in 2019. However, during his sophomore season, he would operate as one of Justin Fields’ main targets while assuming a more prominent role alongside Chris Olave (another potential first-round wide receiver). He would total 723 receiving yards and 43 receptions, for an impressive 34% receiving yards market share in 8 games. This gives him a breakout age of 20.1, per PlayerProfiler, placing him in the 59th percentile among all drafted wide receivers. His Junior season has been equally impressive, though a slight downgrade from last year. Through six games, Wilson has accounted for 25.9% of the team’s receiving yards and 30.3% of their receiving touchdowns. This equates to a 28.1% wide receiver dominator rating, which is currently a decline from his 2020 season (31%). Ideally, you would like to see Wilson improve on that number by the end of the year, as we generally want prospects to continuously improve heading into the draft. Regardless, Wilson should be a lock as a first-round receiver, which continues to be the primary indicator for immediate fantasy success. Therefore, expect Wilson to be a top-3 wide receiver in your rookie drafts next off-season.
Dynasty Stock Report
Michael Pittman Jr. had a slower start to his career, suffering a calf injury that required surgery three weeks into his rookie year. After returning from his injury following the Colts’ bye week, he never truly broke out, finishing in the top-24 only once in their final 10 games. However, with T.Y. Hilton set to miss the start of the 2021 campaign, Pittman entered this season with every opportunity to seize the WR1 role in Frank Reich’s offense. Fast forward to week 6 and Pittman has operated as Carson Wentz’s unquestioned lead receiver while setting career highs in target share (25.3%), air yards per target (11.7), and receiving yards per game (73.6). From a volume standpoint, Pittman has impressively been a top-20 wide receiver in the league, ranking as the WR18 in Weighted Opportunity Rating (0.63) to start the season.
As you can see in the chart above, Pittman’s volume improved significantly after a quiet first week. From then on, his volume was consistently within the top-24 in expected fantasy points, with the exception of week five. In fact, Pittman was impressively the WR2 and WR8 in expected points in weeks two and three, though scoring slightly below expected due to his lack of touchdowns. And despite the slight decline in usage against the Ravens this past game, he finally found the end zone, leading to his most efficient week scoring +9.02 above expected. One interesting note to keep in mind is that Pittman continues to trail Jonathan Taylor and, surprisingly, Zach Pascal in total opportunities in the red zone. Regardless, the improved overall volume is still an encouraging sign. And based on his usage over the last four weeks, Pittman has the potential to be a weekly WR2 for your dynasty rosters going forward.
After a year in which he finished as the WR27 in PPR leagues, the expectation was that Robby Anderson would provide similar production in his 2021 season. Considering he would be reunited with his former quarterback in Sam Darnold, there were plenty of reasons to be optimistic. Through five games this season, however, Anderson has been anything but productive. Not once has he finished within the top-36, while eclipsing the 50-receiving yard marker only once this season. And through five games, Anderson ranks as the WR70 in PPR leagues, which would be his lowest finish since his rookie year.
Surprisingly, Anderson is still 3rd on the team in receiving yards per game (35.8), which just emphasizes how far ahead D.J. Moore and Christian McCaffrey are compared to the rest of the Panthers’ receiving group. As a result, Anderson should be mainly be considered a WR4 at the most going forward. From a dynasty perspective, he was being drafted as the WR42 in September, though I expect that to decline significantly at this rate. The positive news is that Anderson is still under contract in 2022, with significant dead money, which means the Panthers are unlikely to let him go this off-season. For now, dynasty managers may need to hold on to him as his trade value has declined significantly since the start of the season.
With the unfortunate season-ending injury to Raheem Mostert, the RB1 role in Kyle Shanahan’s offense was wide open for the taking. While draft capital would have suggested that 3rd round pick Trey Sermon would be the leading rusher, it was Elijah Mitchell who took advantage of the opportunity. Before his injury, he led all San Francisco running backs in several opportunity metrics such as snap share (62%), rush attempt share (62%), and total opportunity share (36%) in the first two games. To put his workload into perspective, in that timespan, Mitchell was the RB8 in opportunity rate, ahead of players like David Montgomery, Aaron Jones, and Najee Harris.
After suffering a shoulder injury in the second game of the season, there was some concern that Mitchell would lose the RB1 role in the 49ers’ offense. Surprisingly, despite Sermon’s increased opportunity in his absence, it was Mitchell who led the backfield yet again after returning healthy. Against the Cardinals in week 5, Mitchell accounted for 81.8% of the running back rush attempts (9), totaling 62 scrimmage yards and adding two receptions. And while it is slightly concerning that Trey Lance accounted for 16 of the team’s rush attempts, it should be extremely encouraging for dynasty managers that Sermon only received 1 opportunity against the Cardinals. We know “opportunity is king” in fantasy, and it looks like Mitchell should benefit from double-digit touches in Shannahan’s offense going forward.
— OurSF49ers (@OurSf49ers_) October 11, 2021
Juju Smith-Schuster’s dynasty stock has fallen significantly since his second year in the league. After totaling 111 receptions and 1,426 receiving yards (25% target share) in 2018, Juju was being drafted as the WR5 in dynasty leagues, only two picks behind Davante Adams. However, in the following two seasons, he only totaled 1,383 receiving yards, while averaging a career-low 5.6 air yards per target in his 2020 season. Fast forward to the 2021 campaign, and very little has changed. In the first four games of the season, Juju was averaging a career-low 16% target share and receiving yards per target (4.8). In addition to his lower opportunity share, his air-yards per target (6.4) were hardly improved from the prior year, severely capping his fantasy upside week to week. Couple this with Ben Roethlisberger’s 30th ranked completion percentage over expected (CPOE) of -6.9, and Juju’s outlook for the season has already been trending in the wrong direction.
Unfortunately, his year is prematurely coming to an end after suffering a season-ending shoulder injury against the Broncos this past week. What makes this injury even more devasting is that Juju was in the midst of a contract year, likely entering the free agency market again in 2022. On a positive note, per our injury analyst Matthew Betz, Smith-Schuster should be ready by next season. For now, expect his WR31 dynasty ADP to steadily decline over the next couple of months, especially as rookies continue to break out. Depending on how low his dynasty ADP drops by the end of the season, Juju might just be an intriguing trade target for a rebuilding dynasty team. At only 24-years old, with already one WR1 season under his belt, Juju provides intriguing upside, especially if he can find himself on a new team with a high-volume offense and improved quarterback play.