Fantasy Football Dynasty Report for Week 3
Welcome back to the Dynasty Report!
This article will highlight the most important storylines from a dynasty perspective. Since the season never truly ends in a dynasty league, changes throughout the regular season can significantly impact a player’s dynasty value beyond this year.
To give you a holistic view of the dynasty landscape, you can expect the following segments each week:
- Rookie Opportunity Dashboard: Overview of Rookie Performances in the NFL
- Dynasty Stock Report: Recap of the Risers & Fallers in the Dynasty Landscape
- Prospect Watch List: Production Profiles & Analysis for CFB Prospects
And if you are looking for an even deeper look into dynasty football, be sure to tune in every week to the Fantasy Footballers Dynasty Podcast with Borg, Betz, and a Baller!
Rookie Opportunity Dashboard: Week 2
To keep the dashboard concise, I will focus only on the most fantasy-relevant rookies at each position. For reference:
- Expected Fantasy Points (xFP) are synonymous with volume and usage. We want to target rookies that rank highly in this metric, as it could potentially signal future opportunity and fantasy success
- Fantasy Points Over Expected or FPOE signifies efficiency relative to a player’s usage. FPOE is the variance between each player’s actual fantasy points and their expected fantasy value. This metric will usually regress closer to the mean (zero), which is why we isolate it from their baseline production (xFP) to determine which players we can rely on
- Opportunity Share is the percentage of targets and rush attempts that a player accounts for on their team
Rookie Observations after Week 2:
- In last week’s dynasty report, I discussed how Bijan Robinson still had opportunities to improve in his usage, finishing behind Tyler Allgeier in xFP. In Week 2, the backfield completely flipped as the Falcons clearly relied on Robinson as their RB1. As you can see above, he accounted for 32% of the team’s opportunities, finishing the week with the 6th highest usage value among running backs (19.3 xFP). For reference, Allgeier was the RB21 in xFP with 10.8.
- Jahmyr Gibbs saw an improvement in nearly every opportunity metric. Despite only receiving seven carries, Gibbs still finished as the RB15 in Expected Points, heavily driven by his career-high 26.5% target share. And with David Montgomery out of the lineup for the next several games, Gibbs has an opportunity to take over the Detroit backfield as soon as Week 3.
- Tank Dell was never the biggest receiver in his class. However, his elite production clearly stood out in his draft profile, accounting for nearly 34% of his team’s receiving yards in his collegiate career. In Week 2, we finally saw flashes of his ability to earn targets, finishing with a 23% target share and 13.2 Expected Fantasy Points.
- Jayden Reed was the WR1 for the Packers in Week 2 – leading the team in target share (32%) and air yards share (27.6%) against the Falcons. Through two games, Reed now leads Green Bay in Expected Points with 9.9 per game. That barely qualifies as flex-level usage, so I would still temper my expectations going forward, especially as the Packers continue to rank in the bottom 10 in Pass Rate Over Expected.
- With Mark Andrews returning to the lineup, every Baltimore receiver took a backseat, including Zay Flowers. After an electric first game, Flowers played behind Nelson Agholor in Week 2, finishing with only a 15.1% target share.
- Marvin Mims was by far the most efficient rookie wide receiver with nearly +12.5 fantasy points over expected. Clearly, his production is unsustainable as he only received four opportunities on a 24% snap rate. If the Broncos do decide to give Mims more opportunities as their WR3, we could see his target share improve beyond his 7% average through two games. Until his usage improves, Mims is better left on your bench.
- After a shaky debut, C.J. Stroud took a significant step forward in Week 2. He finished with the seventh-highest adjusted yards per attempt (9.0) and the tenth-highest Expected Fantasy Value (21.5) among Quarterbacks. The Texans are also eighth in the league in Pass Rate Over Expected, implying that they want to run the offense through Stroud and their receiving weapons.
Dynasty Stock Report
Puka Nacua – Los Angeles Rams, WR
No other player has seen their dynasty value improve more than Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Puka Nacua. A four-year prospect out of BYU, Nacua would fall into the fifth round of the NFL draft. Despite the historically low hit rate by day three wide receivers, Nacua always profiled as a potential late-round gem due to his impressive production profile at Washington and BYU. In his four collegiate campaigns, he never had a season below a 20% receiving yards market share. Generally, even with day three capital, we have seen a higher breakout rate among receivers like Nacua who were highly productive in college.
Fast forward to his first two games in the NFL and his elite production has clearly translated into the next level. Over the last two weeks, Nacua has averaged an elite 39% target share and a 36% air yards share, leading all wide receivers in Expected Fantasy Points per game (22.2). In fact, his Week 2 xFP of 26.1 is the third-highest, single-game usage value by a rookie wide receiver since 2013. The only rookie to outperform Nacua’s Week 2 performance was none other than Odell Beckham Jr. In short, we have to acknowledge Nacua’s performance as more than just a fluke. He has earned the targets and clearly performed at an efficient level with his opportunities. And while the return of Cooper Kupp could still affect his usage, I would be very surprised if Nacua did not maintain a sizable role going forward after what we just saw over the last two weeks.
Aaron Rodgers – New York Jets, QB
One of the most shocking storylines to develop last week was the unfortunate injury to Aaron Rodgers, who tore his Achilles on his first drive with the New York Jets. As many have reported, Rodgers is very likely out for the full season, which has a rippling effect on the entire New York Jets offense. We saw this past week that outside of Garrett Wilson’s 68-yard touchdown reception, it was an unproductive game for the Jets. In fact, Zach Wilson is currently last in the league in Completion Percentage Over Expected with -18.8%, clearly lowering the floor of the entire offense.
From a dynasty perspective, Rodgers is still under contract with a sizable cap hit next season, which means he should remain the QB1 for the Jets if healthy. While this does hurt Rodgers’ immediate value (which was already low due to his age), I am still willing to invest in both Garrett Wilson and Breece Hall despite the uncertainty of the Jets’ offense going forward. Keep in mind that we should evaluate players based on their talent and not their situation. With how young Wilson and Hall are, I am willing to take the gamble that Rodgers could return and provide a boost to their fantasy production in 2024.
Nico Collins – Houston Texans, WR
Nico Collins has had a relatively quiet first two years in the league, totaling less than a thousand receiving yards in 24 games. However, we saw a significant improvement in his usage last season as he averaged a 19% target share and a 31% air yards share in 2022. With the addition of C.J. Stroud, Collins has taken another step forward, improving in a variety of receiving metrics. Through two games, he ranks as the:
- WR11 in Expected Fantasy Points (13.9)
- WR29 in Target Share (23.3%)
- WR13 in Air Yards Share (40.1%)
In short, Collins is having a career year, averaging borderline WR1 usage. While he will likely experience ebbs and flows as C.J. Stroud continues to develop in his rookie year, Collins is shaping up to be a top-36 dynasty wide receiver with the potential to move up even further if he can maintain this type of production. And with Robert Woods approaching his age-32 season next year, the Texans’ passing offense should run through Collins and Tank Dell for the foreseeable future.
Nick Chubb – Cleveland Browns, RB
This might be one of the most gut-wrenching injuries as Nick Chubb is out for the season with a dislocation and multiple ligament tears to his knee. Considering he was primed for another elite RB1 campaign, this will be a significant loss for dynasty managers who were likely relying on him for a potential dynasty championship. Unfortunately, approaching his age-28 season, we generally see running backs decline at this point in their careers. As a result, it is entirely possible that Chubb may never return to elite production, especially given the significant injury to the same knee that he injured back in 2015. From a dynasty perspective, Chubb has one more non-guaranteed year left on his contract, which will further affect his fantasy value going forward. Naturally, this opens up the opportunity for either Jerome Ford or Pierre Strong Jr. to take on an expanded role. I would also not be surprised if the Browns added a third running back to the mix, such as Kareem Hunt, Leonard Fournette, or Cam Akers. Regardless, this is hopefully not the last we have seen of Chubb, who has truly been one of the most consistent and efficient running backs over the last decade.
Prospect Watch List
One of the strengths of the 2024 wide receiver class is the depth behind some of the top names. Rome Odunze certainly belongs in that conversation as he is currently projected to be a borderline first-round wide receiver in next year’s draft. A four-star recruit and Senior out of the University of Washington, Odunze has been one of the most productive Power 5 receivers this year. At 6’3” and 216 pounds, he is a complete receiver who can line up all over the formation. In addition, with his exceptional catch radius and ball-tracking ability, he is one of the most prolific deep threats in college football.
In fact, Odunze has consistently produced at a high level, with his receiving yards market share never falling below 20% since 2021. His game has taken an even bigger step forward since quarterback Michael Penix Jr. arrived last year. And through three games this season, Odunze is averaging 3.46 receiving yards per team pass attempt, which would put him on pace for a 95th-percentile senior season. Keep in mind that while we prefer wide receivers to declare early, four-year receivers who produce at an elite level have found success as well – such as DeVonta Smith, Brandon Aiyuk, and Demaryius Thomas. So if Odunze can maintain his current usage and production, he should be one of the top receivers selected in next year’s NFL draft.