Dynasty league mailbag: What to do with De’Andre Hopkins, Kenny Pickett and more

My favorite element of covering this great game is the engagement with the readers and followers of my work and, while I’ve highlighted only some of your questions below, rest assured that if you do not see an answer to your question in-article, ask it here and I’ll be sure to answer. If you’ve taken the time to reach out, you deserve an answer!

As always, any referenced dynasty Trade Analyzer, player ranking or ADP data comes from DynastyLeagueFootball (DLF), the oldest and largest dynasty-centric site on the planet.

Please make sure you give me a follow on Twitter: @DLF_Jeff

Let’s get to it!


Is there any realistic hope for Clyde Edwards-Helaire? — Kevin M.

There’s plenty of hope for CEH but it starts with him staying healthy, and that’s the most concerning element in his equation. He played in 13 games in 2020 vs. 10 in 2021, which is going in the wrong direction. But at only 23 years of age, I’ve been acquiring him for late first-round rookie selections if available. A 4.4 ypc clip shows he’s capable. The 2022 season is now his make-or-break campaign before dynasty free-fall begins.

Is Davis Mills a more viable option than Zach Wilson? — Peter B.

no. Though history has proven that any starter under center has a chance to be a quality player and can become a viable long-term player. I believe Wilson takes a sizable jump in 2022, while Mills will be on a one-year trial but is very susceptible to being out of a starting job in 2023 via the draft should the Texans have another high draft selection. Mills showed himself capable late in the season and the team has upgraded the receiver room, so there’s hope. But I’m treating him as no more than a developmental QB3 until we see more.

I’m a dynasty newbie who’s just drafted in a SuperFlex league. Any general tips for a new starter, mainly around roster balance and mistakes to avoid? — Fred S.

Welcome to dynasty, Fred! Any “newbie” asking a question always gets highlighted if at all possible.

For new drafts in SuperFlex, I nearly always get my two starting QBs in the first 2-3 rounds. If there’s one cardinal sin in SF formats, in my bible, it’s not having two solid starting quarterbacks and at least one highly rated developmental name. Quarterbacks are the coin of the realm and even if you have to wait on other skill positions, positional scarcity means you must overweight the QB position. That doesn’t mean you can’t win without two top quarterback names, but your job is much more difficult.

In a SuperFlex league, are any of the rookie QBs worth taking with a Top 5 pick in a rookie draft? — Dan M.

This has been a common question after many of us stated the dangers lurking in the 2022 quarterback class for SuperFlex managers. This is simply a decision which comes down to your own quarterback depth chart and how dire your situation is. If you have little in the cupboard, your only play is a selection of Kenny Pickett (PIT) or a trade out for a veteran name. Even still, Pickett is being selected at 1.08, give or take two picks, which shows that he’s mostly residing outside the Top 5. Looking at quality upside alone, I believe a Top 5 selection carries too much of a premium, but coaches with dire need at the position don’t have the luxury to wait unless they are willing to punt on 2022 in hopes of securing a top 2023 draft pick, which initially looks like an intriguing QB class.

When is the best time to be moving current draft picks for future picks? Right before a rookie draft? — Nicholas F.

In most all cases, draft picks have the most value in the week before the first team goes on the clock during the NFL draft, when hype and excitement are at their highest points. In most cases, there is a point following the draft when one or more top picks can increase in value as we learn where the rookies have landed but, in most cases, this only impacts the very top end of the first round. I have the most luck trading for future draft picks before the NFL draft of the current year or with late first-round selections during my rookie drafts following the NFL draft.

Is it time to start considering trading Dalvin Cook and Alvin Kamara? When, if ever, should you start considering trading big assets like that? — John S.

This is essentially the crux of the dynasty game. And it comes down to your team’s competitive level over the next 2-3 years. To sell out of both players largely assumes that you aren’t looking to make the playoffs. But, that said, I find most teams feel they are a lot less competitive than they really are because injuries and anomalies still provide a lot of luck and mystery each season. Players like Cook and Kamara will not likely gain value given their current age, but they are certainly still top names within the running back rankings, and not easily replaced. Cook is still a very productive asset and, while Kamara exists under a legal overhang currently, should he not miss time in 2022, he’s likely an upside trade target for dynasty coaches looking for running back production.

I have Tyreek Hill, Justin Jefferson, Deebo Samuel, Courtland Sutton, Marquise Brown and Mike Williams in a 10-team league. Obviously I need to trade one or more of these for other positions, but who should I trade away? — Faustino F.

I don’t think it’s “obvious” that you need to trade any of these players. Hill, Jefferson and Deebo are clearly your front-line starters and that leaves Sutton, Brown and Williams as reserve talent for bye week fill-ins or rotations due to match-up. If I were to move one of these players, it would be Williams. Brown, in a new situation in Arizona, is intriguing enough for me to keep while Williams remains consistently inconsistent. He’s still valuable but, if provided with a good offer, I’d move him.

Does having Kyle Pitts make it a wise move to avoid drafting Drake London, taking one of the other top rookie receivers instead? Same goes for Elijah Moore managers in regards to Garrett Wilson. In other words, is it best to diversify as long as you aren’t taking a big hit in talent? — Brian T.

I don’t mind stacks of most positions except at receiver. It’s personal preference but the only time I violate this rule is when the team has an elite quarterback and an upside offense. I avoid receiver-receiver stacks and downgrade receiver-tight end stacks. Given the depth of receivers in 2022, I would not draft London to pair with Pitts in an Atlanta situation with significant quarterback risk. Whether it’s Marcus Mariota under center or a rookie, this could be a long-term downside situation I would prefer to avoid. But it’s manager’s choice.

What should I expect from Myles Gaskin and James Robinson? — Joseph S.

Miami had been signaling for two years that they didn’t believe Gaskin was the starter. I think he’s no more than a committee player now and a lost dynasty asset. The DLF Trade Analyzer shows these two as being valued as third-round 2022 rookie selections. I’m not buying Gaskin anywhere, but I like Robinson at this value given his age (23) and likelihood of returning from his Achilles injury, even with Travis Etienne still in the mix. If you have either of these assets, you’re likely holding until more is learned.

I have Lamar Jackson, Tua Tagovailoa, and Jared Goff as my QBs in a SuperFlex league. Is it worth drafting Kenny Pickett at 1.07 or should I wait for the others to fall and get a backup on waivers? — Scott L.

There are a lot of Pickett questions for SuperFlex, as expected. Pickett is currently being selected near the 1.08, give or take two positions. So your 1.07 is in the range. You have enough risk at the position to select Pickett, or, to simply take the best remaining receiver and select a quarterback in the second round or not at all. In SuperFlex, quarterbacks are ultra-premium assets, as I explained earlier in this article, and it’s never a bad idea to have too many. But the quality of this year’s class is poor, which lowers the value of the assets generally. In your case, I slightly favor passing and picking up the best remaining receiver.

Who is someone in this rookie class being drafted outside of the Top 18 who, this time next year, everyone will be asking how didn’t we draft this guy earlier? — Kyle S.

The short answer here is receiver Alec Pierce (IND). He’s a baller, has NFL size and game and he should be starting at the “Z” with Matt Ryan at quarterback. He’s a high-upside selection as the WR14, and No. 21 overall, on DLF’s rookie rankings. I’m buying everywhere I can after pick No. 18.

Which TEs in this draft have good long-term value? I assume Trey McBride and Jelani Woods, but any other intriguing landing spots for TE prospects? — Matthew G.

To be perfectly honest, after McBride, I’m fading all the rest. If you look at historical tight end scoring and where they come from in NFL drafts, it’s very difficult to find a compelling reason to draft one highly. Every year, there are 1-3 tight ends who emerge from nowhere to be producers and, often, to be Top 5 at the position for years. Travis Kelce, Mark Andrews, George Kittle, Rob Gronkowski, Dalton Schultz, etc. all were non-first-round selections in the NFL draft and were free agents in fantasy. You just have to be quick to claim them when they blow up mid-season.

In a full dynasty PPR league, is Cordarrelle Patterson worth keeping and, if not, what or who would be good value for him in a trade? — Jamie M.

If your team is competitive, you’re holding him because he’s in value limbo, too low to trade for any material return and teams that are rostering him will want more than what you are offering to move him. He’s a player like Keenan Allen and Tyler Lockett. Unless you get a significant offer for him, you probably hold. His current value is pegged somewhere near a third-round rookie selection. Too low of a return for me to trade him away.

What to do with De’Andre Hopkins? I’m a contending team with Stefon Diggs, Mike Evans and Rashod Bateman as my other starting WRs. — Adam B.

Another player in value limbo. But, he’s in his age-30 season and there’s every reason to believe he can still be productive for another 2-3 years. He’s still a WR1 and while he’s not the asset he once was, I’m buying if I can get him in return for a low-first selection, as long as my team is competitive. Teams have sourced on Hopkins such that he’s now a good buy-low(er) target.

How long do you carry premier but aging players? Do you offload early to try and capitalize on their peak value, or do you ride it out through their last productive seasons? A player example would’ve been someone like Julio Jones, who was a stud right up until he wasn’t anymore. — Patrick C.

I’m a “known over unknown” coach. That means I always prioritize what I know over what I do not. Julio burned a lot of coaches, including myself but, in most cases, you win championships by scoring points and nothing is more important to me than a player with established consistent production. That doesn’t mean the wheels won’t fall off, but I’ll usually ride them until they do. In most cases, once a player gets to that level, he doesn’t have the value to bring in noteworthy draft capital. I’ll hold those players into their later years as long as they’re producing, all the while adding young talent below them. When you possess veteran producers, it offers more time for young players to develop.


Hope you enjoyed this Q&A and, once again, if you didn’t see your message highlighted here, be sure to check the comments below as I’ll be answering each one. Also, head over to Twitter and give me a follow: @DLF_Jeff

As always, be happy, be well and, please, be good to each other!

(Top photo: Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)

.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.