Every year, we Dynasty owners cast aside our so-so Rookie picks from the season before. This year’s class is so much better top to bottom, we tell ourselves. We are an impatient lot, unlike our spouses. What follows in a list players you have likely contemplated dropping already. Other Dynasty guys have maybe even given you the thumbs up. Well that is not right. So sit back and find out how you will reap your rewards.
Mitchell Trubisky, Chicago Bears – Everybody and their “all-holy” view on Deshaun Watson is little putting the cart before the horse a little bit if you ask me. Sure Trubisky’s production was rather anemic at times, but he will show improvement learning from his mistakes. Weapons will be added and a new scheme will be catered to his strengths. His pocket poise, fearlessness, and aggressive tendencies will be on full display.
Elijah McGuire, New York Jets – Bilal Powell is grown-ass man. By that I mean he will be 30 years old in October. He will not be 30 years young, and in RB terms, he might as well be 45 years old! Now I am sure you are screaming at your screen that the Jets will (you really really mean it) draft a RB in rounds 2 or 3. That is grand, and never stop believing in yourself, but does anyone ever truly know what the Jets are doing . . . ever? This is the same team that drafted back-to-back safeties in rounds 1 and 2 just a year ago. As the RB3 for Jets last season, McGuire amassed 105 touches (88 rushing & 17 receiving). Now with the 67 year old Matt Forte likely a cap causality, McGuire will fill a more important role. The Jets are likely to take a QB in round 1 as well as break camp with Powell as the starter. Its seems very likely that McGuire will assume the third pass catcher-role to protect Powell for the longevity of the season. If they in fact draft an RB, it will likely a work horse one that is to replace Powell in 2019, when Powell’s contract is up. Also it worth mentioning that the Jets could save nearly 3.2 million dollars by cutting Powell this off-season. The Jets may even do so after the draft, leaving McGuire as the lone wolf with experience in their offense. McGuire has real sticky mitts, and I would conservatively guesstimate that a 50-reception season is coming. That could even happen with Powell at RB1. Young QBs need that safety valve, and McGuire can be that kind of spark plug. Also I can’t imagine a non-first round RB would start over McGuire.
Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts – Indy has been linked to the “suck for Saquon” campaign. I will admit that marriage seems highly likely. Yet, news of Andrew Luck’s shoulder deterioration has me thinking a QB could now enter their thoughts. The Colts are still without a HC after Josh McDaniels mooned them all the way back to Foxboro. That means they have a lack of continuity and no present plan of attack. The other major issue with Colts is that they play defense like someone bringing a water gun to a missile strike. They need pass rushers more than my goalie son needs a shower and deodorant after a hockey game. So do not be surprised if the TBD regime thinks likewise. Mack managed 114 touches as a reserve during 2017. He also averaged 10.7 yards on 21 receptions. The +10 YPC is one of my boxes I check off during off-season evaluations. Mack has real gusto and the perfect RB frame (5’11”/215 Pounds) to be a highly successful RB in this league.
Zay Jones, Buffalo Bills – The Bills finally made the playoffs, yet this off-season is full of questions to be answered. It is very obvious that Tyrod Taylor will be out the door. Another player likely on his way out is Kelvin Benjamin. Buffalo can pay Benjamin 8.4 million dollars or cut him and lose $0,000,000.00. Jordan Matthews was also acquired in 2017 and he is now an unrestricted free agent. So you can bark all you like about Jones’s 36.5% catch rate. I know, it is abysmal, but ponder this: he still led all Bills WRs in targets (74). He was also tied for second on the team with Charles Clay and he was just three targets behind team leader LeSean McCoy. Because of his catch rate, Jones is dirt cheap in Dynasty. Jones is only going to be 23 at the start of the 2018 season. He was also basically Buffalo’s WR1 with Matthews and Benjamin in and out of the lineup. Other Bills WRs Andre Holmes (couldn’t beat Seth Roberts in OAK) and Deonte Thompson (cut by the WR-starved Bears) saw far fewer targets. Whomever the QB is will have a full off-season to build chemistry with Jones, who caught a NCAA record 399 passes in college, which included 158 reception senior season.
Curtis Samuel, Carolina Panthers – Just because Devin Funchess performed as a WR1 last season doesn’t mean he is legitimate. Even still Funchess will demand attention from opponents top cornerback. Tight End Greg Olsen and slasher back Christian McCaffrey will garner coverage from the Safeties and any LB who dares. I’m guessing you already forgot about Samuel? Remember how confused we all were when Carolina drafted Samuel after selecting McCaffrey in the first? Just think how confused defenses will be to see Samuel in the same huddle with McCaffrey and Olsen? Samuel was never quite 100% during his rookie season, but he is still a dual threat. Carolina invested a 2nd-round pick on him, and they will use him when he is healthy. I mainly love Samuel because the rest of the Panthers’ WR depth chart is Damiere Byrd, Russell Shepard, Brenton Bersin, Kaelin Clay, Charles Johnson, and “cousin” Mose Frazier.
Taywan Taylor, Tennessee Titans – Eric “BD” Decker is going to be gone and Rishard Matthews may follow soon enough. This means Taylor should be ready to run with the 1’s all off-season. Taylor was man-child in the Western Kentucky air raid offense; his understanding of route concepts and what to do when your is in trouble will make pop. New OC Matt LaFleur could certainly use Taylor like he did Cooper Kupp last season with the Rams. LaFleur also worked with Sean McVay last season in Los Angeles. McVay was instrumental in creating routes for Jamison Crowder, who flashed with the Washington Redskins in 2016. With Dynasty darling Corey Davis (who is not the picture of perfect health) patrolling at “X”, Taylor should produce as a consistent WR2 with hopefully a couple two-TD games sprinkled in.
Ricky Seals-Jones, Arizona Cardinals – New HC Steve Wilks is a defense-minded leader. Yet as the former DC of the Panthers, he knows the value of the Tight End as a pass catcher. During the Bruce Arians era in Arizona, no TE caught more than Rob Housler’s 39 receptions in 2013. In fact, in 2014, it was so bad that three Card’s TE combined for 17 total receptions. Newly appointed OC Mike McCoy also knows a thing or two about getting the TE the ball. When McCoy ran the show in San Diego, Antonio Gates averaged 6.67 targets per game! I do realize RSJ is a long away from being Mr. Gates. However RSJ’s TD upside may be right on par. I also realize that you efficiency nerds are gazing at his 28-to-12 target-to-reception ratio and crossing him off your buy-low list. Don’t forget, that was with three different QBs, and the majority of his targets came from Blaine “Frickin” Gabbert.