This is a monthly segment where I’ll be reviewing significant ADP changes you need to know about. These are the players that have seen the biggest bumps up (or down) in their draft stock, and what that might mean for your roster.
It’s been about a month since I last wrote, and it’s crazy what can happen in that time span. Without going into too many details (I’m sure you have a general idea), it’s safe to say that football is still going strong in April. Free agency, trade acquisitions, cuts, drops, and tags abound as the new league year shakes off the dust and settles in for a long offseason that’s filled to the brim with hype, tension, and nervous hope that football will indeed be unaffected by the world around it.
These players have seen plenty of shifts of their own stock in recent weeks, and not without good reason. I’m here to help break down those that stick out the most, and why it’s important to say attention to them. Their ADP (Average Draft Position) is an important footnote that 2020 fantasy players should keep in mind as we delve into these individual breakdowns.
(FP) = Fantasy Pros
(FFC) = Fantasy Football Calculator
(DFD) = Dynasty Football Digest
The only trek that doesn’t need a captain.
Running Back, Las Vegas Raiders
2019: RB16, ADP #33 (FP)
2020: RB11, ADP #19 (DFD)
After a stellar rookie campaign that saw Jacobs hit over 1,100 rushing yards and 1,300 from scrimmage, his stock deservingly rose. What’s more, he’s bound to see an uptick in looks with new quarterback Marcus Mariota entering the locker room. Jacobs has played the part of workhorse well, and his game logs show it. In the 13 games he played, he rushed for 15 or more times in 10 of them. That’s a nice workload for a rookie who’s sure to be utilized heavily moving forward.
My only issue with him is his lack of involvement in the passing game. 27 attempts to the running back and 20 receptions isn’t a lot to be excited about from a PPR standpoint. This certainly lowers Jacobs’ ceiling, making him more touchdown-dependent, which is what he was last year. Not to say he’s not capable of receiving; it was actually one of his selling points out of college.
GM Mike Mayock recently noted that one of the aspects of Jacobs’ play the Raiders are actively going to work towards is his further involvement in the receiving game. Doing so would certainly boost Jacobs’ fantasy profile, which currently has him in the low RB1, high-end RB2 range.
Running Back, Philadelphia Eagles
2019 ADP: RB202, ADP #744 (FP)
2020 ADP: RB55, ADP #310 (DFD)
I do quite a bit of digging before I was able to uncover Scott’s ADP. He was so under the radar and far-removed from the spotlight that he was righteously drafted as such. Another footnote on a long list of running backs, he made his presence known last season when he took the injury advantage and scored big for fantasy. While Sanders exited early and missed a couple of contests, Scott enjoyed huge fantasy success in weeks 14 and 17 last year, the latter providing him an RB1 performance and finishing as the Running Back No. 2 on the week in PPR.
The fact that he’s shown he can carry the load for a few games in the case of missed time by the starter overwhelmingly benefits his draft stock. 19 rushes for 54 yards and three touchdowns to go along with 4 receptions for another 84 yards through the air is the exact kind of Darren Sproles-Esque replacement the Eagles have been looking for.
Scott’s value is just that, and he should be valued as such. Moving forward, keep an eye on how any training camp or off-field mentions of his usage play out. A split back committee could prove invaluable or extremely detrimental for both of the players, so it’s worth monitoring throughout the offseason. Should Sanders miss time, Scott is clearly the handcuff to have, making him one of the more valuable deep-round targets.
Ronald Jones II
Running Back, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2019 ADP: RB56, ADP #150 (FP)
2020 ADP: RB40, ADP #217 (DFD)
I wrote a small piece about Jones last year before the season began, highlighting his possible usage and how best to maximize his potential. I guess Bruce Arians must’ve just skimmed it or not even read it at all, because everything in this backfield went down the drain. While Peyton Barber has moved on to bigger and better (??) things, Jones is still here and should be the favorite to head the backfield. With support from Dare Ogunbowale, Jones seems to be the lead back for now. There’s no telling what the rest of the offseason or draft will bring.
Jones does have an opportunity though…again. While his job security will remain a big factor up until Week 1, he’s the most talented and diverse back on the team. The man that made David Johnson can work miracles, so it’s not out of the question to see Jones take that next big leap. With plenty of opportunity around him and an upgrade at quarterback, it’s no wonder his stock has risen. He’s still a low-end RB2, but with more assurances at his position, he should see more consistency this season.
Running Back, Los Angeles Rams
2019: RB36, ADP #101 (FP)
2020: RB33, ADP #166 (DFD)
2019: RB67, ADP #234 (FP)
2020: RB53, ADP #124 (FFC)
It’s too early to call it.
While a five-spot drop and a fall in overall for Henderson may not stand out to some, it’s important to remember that some of this information that we are basing these ADP positions off of are coming before the release of Todd Gurley. While it’s not assured thing that Henderson will have the starting role, his competition with Malcolm Brown is sure to be an intense one.
While it’s still too early to say who the starter will be, the team is a pretty bright spot for fantasy. Both backs registered high broken tackle rates and were able to be successful in their minimal usage, Brown more so. With Gurley out of LA, it’s anyone’s guess at this point who will the starter. One should view these players as of now on an even playing field, despite Brown’s heavier usage and Henderson’s recovery from ankle surgery. Henderson was a third-round pick and is entering his second year with a chance to compete as the top back, making him a hot commodity in future drafts.
I’d keep both of these guys on the bench for now. But that’s just it; for now. You might not be able to get one or either of them the closer to kickoff we get.
Wide Receiver, Chicago Bears
2019: WR28, ADP #70 (FP)
2020: WR19, ADP #48 (DFD)
I really wish Allen Robinson would get a decent quarterback. While Foles flopped in Jax, maybe he can find some semblance of usage in Chicago when he arrives. With Trubisky’s job finally in jeopardy, Robinson may finally see something close to consistency from the man in charge of getting him the ball.
Even when it was Mitch lobbing passes his way (and I mean lobbing), Robinson still had some killer weeks and managed a WR1 finish on the year as the WR8. With all the good it does him to have consistency, it can only help him with a fairly decent quarterback hitting him in stride.
While Robinson’s 2019 season may have not been the best of his career, it was certainly his best with the Bears. His 11.7 yards per reception was the second-lowest of his career, while his 7 touchdowns were his 2nd-highest. He posted career highs in receptions per game (6.1) and 1st downs (63) and had his first 1,000-yard season since his Pro Bowl 2015 season.
Robinson is a bonafide WR1 who just needs some reliability out of the pocket for him to really go the extra mile that he’s already going for this team. An upgrade at signal-caller means a high-end player that will sleep into WR2 territory. That’s a win for whoever drafts him.
Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys
2019: WR47, ADP #126 (FP)
2020: WR32, ADP #97 (DFD)
With Amari getting his money, Gallup’s role as No. 2 is still secure. While it’s by no means a super glamorous role, the fact that he’s another year in the Kellen Moore system only aids his fantasy appeal. If Prescott’s No. 2 fantasy finish last year is any indicator of his fantasy prowess (it is), Gallup is indeed in a prime position to take that leap.
He’s certainly being drafted as such. While we need to wait until we see the team in action on the field, Gallup’s role as a safe (albeit spectacular) flex option could quietly be a steal. He started and finished this past season strong, giving you a monster 3-touchdown performance in Week 17 (if you play Week 17). The only issue though is his uneven gameplay. For as many weeks as he gave you great performances, he dipped under 10 points or didn’t even play.
If Gallup can insert himself into a higher target share and score more (he only had 3 touchdowns all year if you take out Week 17), his upside his substantial. He’s one of my favorite sleepers to take that next huge leap into fantasy super-relevancy. For now, keep him in flex consideration with WR2 upside.
Wide Receiver, Denver Broncos
2019: WR44, ADP #115 (FP)
2020: WR21, ADP #54 (DFD)
Another year in Vic Fangio’s system means another leap forward. Sutton will enter this season as the undisputed one after Sanders was shipped off halfway through last year. With Drew Lock taking the reins and Noah Fant on the rise (we’ll talk about him in a minute), Sutton is looking in prime position to bring in some steady WR fantasy numbers.
Sutton struggled last year with maintaining consistent performances, but it’s hard to blame him. Like several other receivers in the league, he dealt with multiple quarterback changes, and none of the options were by any means great. The silver lining is that the Broncos have finally (hopefully) found their man in Drew Lock. Sutton is talented, but he’s not good enough to overcome the quarterback carousel (think DeAndre Hopkins).
If Sutton can find his footing and be grounded down with the same quarterback for the duration of the season, I think we’ll see some of that chemistry come to life for fantasy in a huge way. He has WR1 potential, but he’s still a middling WR2 for me right now. As for this season, we’ll just have to wait and see.
Wide Receiver, Baltimore Ravens
2019: WR61, ADP #184 (FP)
2020: WR44, ADP #146 (DFD)
While many wide receivers are looking to make that second-year leap, I don’t see Brown making one. His role I the offense, albeit an important one, made him less and less fantasy-relevant as the season progressed. His game logs speak for themselves:
Offensive snaps notwithstanding, Brown is in no way a reliable fantasy option. His draft stock has risen considerably this year, however, so it’s wise to keep an eye on how he progresses. You can still get him for fairly cheap, as he’s still a high-end WR3/flex option that could pay off in big ways.
It comes down to his overall utilization, but I personally don’t see him being a steady option to rely on week in and week out until his offensive snap percentages reflect such. That being said, he’s more of a bench spot right now.
A step by step guide to the bottom.
Quarterback, Free Agent
March 2020: QB14, ADP #198 (DFD)
April 2020: QB20, ADP #268 (DFD)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed free-agent quarterback, Tom Brady, to a two-year, $50 million contract, at the end of March. Once that became official, everyone in the NFL and in the dynasty community knew what that spelled for Jameis, him not being re-signed by Tampa Bay. Even prior to Brady signing there were rumors of Winston and the Buccaneers parting ways, before the start of the 2020 season.
What do you do with Winston in dynasty leagues now? Well, as of the writing of this article, he’s yet to find a new team and seems content to wait for the right fit. I own him in one of my dynasty leagues and I’m very content with holding onto the former #1 pick. Winston, 26, showed flashes of being able to be a franchise quarterback, last season. On other occasions, he showed why Tampa Bay decided to move in another direction. He ended last season with 5,109 passing yards on 380/626 for 33 touchdowns and 30 interceptions. I think it’s smart for Jameis to take his time in finding a new team and as someone who owns him, that’s all you can ask for. If you believe he’ll rebound either this year or next, i’d look to acquire him now, while he’s still a free agent.
Tight End, Cleveland Browns
March 2020: TE15, ADP #202 (DFD)
April 2020: TE16, ADP #226 (DFD)
The Cleveland Browns signed free agent tight end, Austin Hooper, to a four-year, $44 million, and includes $23 million guaranteed. At the time of his signing, he’s now the highest-paid tight end in the NFL, however, I don’t expect that to be the case at the start of the season. Hooper’s signing moves David Njoku to second on the tight end depth chart. I know the Browns got a new head coach, but here’s what the tight ends did last season.
Receptions: 41 Targets: 69 Yards: 497 Touchdowns: 9
Also, working against Njoku is all of the other offensive talents at wide receiver and running back. The only way I see David being fantasy relevant, this season is due to injury to Hooper or one of the wide receivers. We’ll also be able to tell how this new offense will look early on in the season, which could benefit Njoku’s 2020 outlook in the dynasty. I believe he’s someone that dynasty owners are hoping gets traded to a tight end needy team. Until we get more clarity, he’s someone I’m holding in dynasty leagues.
Zach Hargis is a writer for Dynasty Football Digest. He enjoys playing the drums, doing voice impressions, and quoting The Office. If any of those things interest you, he welcomes you to follow him on Twitter @ZachFFDrummer and to check out his personal interests on Instagram @zakktastic.