Fantasy Football Dynasty Report for Week 5
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 4
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 4:
- De’Von Achane‘s opportunity share decreased from 30.9% to 24.5% in a less favorable game script, resulting in only 10.7 Expected Points. Despite this significant drop, Achane still ranked as the RB23 in xFP and led the Dolphins’ backfield in several metrics. His efficiency will eventually regress, but his usage over the last two weeks suggests that he should be considered a flex-level running back in fantasy lineups going forward.
- Jahmyr Gibbs took a step back with David Montgomery in the lineup as the Lions featured a run-heavy game plan against the Packers. His 18.6% opportunity share is the second-lowest of his young career, as he was mostly featured in the passing game (18.5% target share). Unfortunately, with Montgomery entrenched as the early-down and short-yardage rusher, Gibbs’ upside will remain limited going forward. However, as long as he remains involved as a receiver, Gibbs will remain a flex option for fantasy managers.
- With Javonte Williams leaving the game early, Jaleel McLaughlin led the backfield in opportunities (10) and opportunity share (22.2%). While his efficiency is likely unsustainable at +10.8 Fantasy Points Over Expected, McLaughlin should be rostered in all dynasty leagues in the event Williams misses some time due to a hip injury.
- At this point, we should not be surprised anymore. Puka Nacua has earned a consistent role in this offense after finishing in the Top 10 in Expected Points in three of his first four games. If and when Cooper Kupp is healthy, I expect Tutu Atwell and Van Jefferson to be most affected by his return.
- Michael Wilson had not received more than 15% of the targets in any of his games before Week 4. However, in the previous week’s Rookie Dashboard, he stood out with his 33.5% share of air yards. In fact, despite his lack of targets, Wilson received over 30% of the team’s air yards in two of his first three games. In his breakout game in Week 4, his target share finally improved to 17.1%. So while his production was heavily driven by efficiency (+13.1 FPOE), Wilson still finished as the WR26 in Expected Points, which could be a sign of improved usage going forward.
- Zay Flowers is currently on pace to average the highest target share (28.4%) by a Ravens receiver over the last decade, ahead of both Marquise Brown and Steve Smith Sr. It has been an impressive start for Flowers as he continues to move up in dynasty ADP.
- Aidan O’Connell was forced into the starting role when Jimmy Garoppolo was unavailable last week. Although he led all rookie quarterbacks in Expected Points, he was by far the least efficient of the group, finishing with a -13.7 FPOE and a -8.1 Completion Percentage Over Expected. It was a forgettable game for O’Connell, who struggled heavily in his first starting opportunity.
- Anthony Richardson has started and finished two games this season, and in both of them, he finished in the top eight for expected points (usage) among quarterbacks. Even though he continues to struggle in the passing game (last in Completion Percentage Over Expected), his significant volume as a rusher and passer will keep him in the conversation as a top quarterback each and every week.
Dynasty Stock Report
Coming out of Notre Dame, Kyren Williams was one of my favorite prospects in the 2022 draft. In his class, Williams was third among running backs in yards per team play (1.56) and second in receiving yards market share (10.2%), finishing his collegiate career with a very accomplished profile. Unfortunately, struggles at the combine and concerns due to his size likely caused Williams to fall to the fifth round. As a result, he was barely involved in his rookie year as he played behind Cam Akers for most of the season. Fast forward to his sophomore campaign, Williams has earned the RB1 role and has been one of the most productive fantasy running backs this season. Through four games, Williams ranks as the:
- RB15 in Opportunity Share (31.7%)
- RB12 in Target Share (13.8%)
- RB6 in Expected Fantasy Points (17.1)
- RB6 in Half-PPR Points (19.0)
While it would be shocking for Williams to finish with over 350 opportunities (current pace of 21.5 per game), it is undeniable that he will remain a significant part of the Rams’ game plan barring any unexpected additions. As a dynasty manager, I would still field offers for Williams as I expect the Rams to at least bring a complimentary piece to their backfield next year. Until then, Williams is a borderline RB1 as he should remain a focal point of the offense going forward.
Dalvin Cook – New York Jets, RB
There was much speculation about which team Dalvin Cook would sign with after being released by the Vikings in June. Some argued that the Miami Dolphins would have been the ideal landing spot, which would have likely prevented De’Von Achane from breaking out. Instead, Cook joined the New York Jets, which limited the upside of all running backs in that backfield. However, with Aaron Rodgers’ season-ending injury, the entire Jets offense has struggled to produce this year. Through four games, Cook ranks outside of the top 40 in both Expected Points and half-PPR scoring, accounting for only 19.7% of the team’s opportunities. With Breece Hall continuing to lead the backfield, Cook is unlikely to be a starter in most league formats. And at age 28, his days as a top-20 running back in fantasy football are likely coming to an end.
C.J. Stroud – Houston Texans, QB
Former Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud was one of the most accurate and productive college quarterbacks in recent history. His adjusted yards per attempt (11.2) and conference-adjusted completion percentage (+0.05%) were both in the 98th and 94th percentiles, respectively. As a result, Stroud’s potential was never in doubt after being selected second overall by the Texans. And through four games, he has been the most impressive rookie quarterback, leading them in the following metrics:
- Pass EPA per Attempt (13.5)
- Success Rate (46.1%)
- Air Yards per Attempt (7.9)
- Adjusted Yards per Attempt (8.8)
In summary, Stroud’s dynasty value is rapidly increasing, as he also ranks in the top 16 in each of the metrics listed above. While he still has a long way to go to reach the level of Justin Herbert and Lamar Jackson, I would comfortably rank him alongside Trevor Lawrence and Dak Prescott. And if he can maintain his current level of production, Stroud should easily be considered a top-eight dynasty quarterback heading into the 2024 offseason.
David Bell – Cleveland Browns, WR
David Bell was a promising prospect coming out of college, having amassed nearly 3,000 receiving yards in three seasons with Purdue. However, despite being selected in the third round of the NFL draft, he has not made a significant impact in his first 20 games. Bell has averaged only a 6.3% target share and 5.2% air yards share, receiving only 1.9 opportunities per game. In addition, the Browns made some significant additions to their receiving corps this off-season, further limiting his opportunities. Through four games, Bell is playing behind Donovan Peoples-Jones, Marquise Goodwin, and the rookie Cedric Tillman. As a result, unless Bell emerges later this year, he can likely be dropped in most dynasty leagues, as players rarely break out after such an unproductive start to their careers.
Prospect Watch List
I briefly discussed this in an offseason version of the dynasty report, but the 2024 tight end class is unlikely to feature the depth we saw in 2023. Despite the lack of depth, the upcoming rookie class includes one of the best tight end prospects we have seen over the last decade. That player is Brock Bowers, a true junior who has been the focal point of the Bulldogs’ offense over the last three years. His production is by far the most impressive aspect of his profile. As you can see above, Bowers immediately contributed in his true freshman season. And while his first two seasons were already impressive, Bowers managed to set the bar even higher this year. He is currently on track to set career highs in several categories and finish with yet another elite campaign. In fact, if he can maintain this level of production, he will finish with one of the most impressive production profiles of any college tight end in recent history. For reference, the data below highlights where each of his seasons ranked among all drafted tight ends since 2013, using the metric Receiving Yards per Team Pass Attempt (RY/TPA):
- Freshman: 2.23 (99th percentile)
- Sophomore: 1.19 (95th percentile)
- Junior: 2.29 (96th Percentile)
To put this into context, Kyle Pitts only averaged 1.05 RY/TPA in his first two seasons at Florida. While he did have a dominant junior campaign (2.52 RY/TPA), he was not nearly as productive as Bowers early in his career. Pitts’ athletic profile is where he likely has the edge, as he entered the league with a 99th percentile weight-adjusted speed score. Whether Bowers can match that remains to be seen at the combine. Regardless, he will be one of the most accomplished college tight ends in recent history as he projects to be a 99th-percentile prospect in next year’s draft.