What is the fantasy football fallout from a surprisingly active NFL trade deadline? Who were the biggest winners? We’ve got you covered.
The NFL trade deadline is over and now it’s time to look at the trades from a fantasy perspective. Compared to other NFL trade deadlines, this one had impacts on our fantasy teams not only for this year but next.
CHECK OUT the NFL League Center: News, Stats, Standings
Seattle Seahawks trade third-and-fifth-round picks in 2018 plus a 2019 second- round pick to the Houston Texans for left tackle Duane Brown
Fantasy Winners: Russell Wilson and the Seahawks offense
Usually, when an offensive lineman is traded it doesn’t seem like that big of a deal, but this was a great move for Seattle. Wilson gets a huge upgrade protecting his blind side, which will allow him to stay in the pocket longer. The running game will also improve.
A good running game and a giant-size left tackle are a quarterback’s best friends. This move is exactly what the Seahawks needed and Wilson’s numbers will only get better. Wilson is now a top-five fantasy QB with the upside of being the top fantasy scorer in any week. I still don’t want anything to do with the running game because the team uses three running backs, but Wilson is a must start and he makes for an elite play in DFS.
Philadelphia Eagles trade a fourth-round pick in 2018 to the Miami Dolphins for Jay Ajayi
Fantasy Winners: Ajayi and Kenyan Drake
Philadelphia should be facing jail time for stealing Ajayi from the Dolphins. The Eagles now have added a Pro Bowl-caliber running back, one who should be handed the lead back role once he gets used to the system. I wouldn’t be surprised if he becomes a top 10 fantasy RB for the second half of the season. The Dolphins offensive line has been playing poorly all year and now he gets to run behind one of the best lines in football. So far this season, with the committee at running back approach, led by LeGarrette Blount, the Eagles have the fifth-most rushing yards in the NFL.
Ajayi showed us last year that he can be effective with a healthy offensive line and a commitment to the run. He averaged 4.9 yards per carry and totaled over 1,400 yards. He can catch the ball and carry the rock 20-to-25 carries a week. Blount will still be used on the goal line and I am guessing it will be a 70/30 split between the two backs with Ajayi leading the way.
Kenyan Drake now becomes the main guy in Miami. The offense has been horrible but it’s hard to ignore a team’s number one running back. Drake will get around 12-to-15 carries a game and if he is running well, he will get more. He’s worth a flex spot in your lineup with all of the bye weeks. Add him if he is available and if he has a big week or two, you can trade him before your league’s trade deadline.
New England Patriots trade Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Fransisco 49ers for a second-round pick in 2018
Fantasy Winners: Jimmy Garoppolo—in 2018
Jimmy G is finally out of Tom Brady‘s shadow. However, I don’t think he will be worth a fantasy roster spot this season. Kyle Shanahan runs a very fantasy-friendly offense and having a whole offseason to learn the playbook will only benefit Garoppolo.
The 49ers schedule for the rest of the season is rough for quarterbacks. The next four games are the Arizona Cardinals, New York Giants, Seattle Seahawks and the Chicago Bears. I wouldn’t feel confident in starting him in any of those games.
San Francisco will likely end up with the number one pick next year in the NFL draft and they will add someone who will help the offense. Garropolo has the talent to be a top-tier quarterback in the league—but won’t be until next season.
Buffalo Bills Trade third-and-seventh-round picks in 2018 to the Carolina Panthers for Kelvin Benjamin
Fantasy winners: Tyrod Taylor, Christian McCaffrey and Devin Funchess
The Bills traded away their top receiver, Sammy Watkins at the start of the NFL seasons and ever since then the passing game has been hurting. Taylor now gets a big target in Benjamin. Last season, the Bills converted 65 percent of their red zone trips for points. This season it has dropped to 55 percent. The team had no red zone threat until making this deal.
Benjamin is exactly what Buffalo has been looking for. This will not only help Taylor but also LeSean McCoy. Defenses just can’t take away the run and now have to focus on Benjamin on the outside. Taylor will benefit from having a playmaker on the outside and he will be more comfortable throwing the ball. The Bills offense will be more fantasy-friendly.
Devin Funchess will now be the focal point at wide receiver in the Carolina passing game. Funchess is already second on the team (first for wideouts) in targets and now he can see close to 70 targets for the rest of the season. The Panthers front office must see him as the team’s future number one WR; they will see in the second half of the season if they made the right choice between Benjamin and Funchess.
Christian McCaffrey is already leading the team in targets but he will be in line to see maybe four or five more targets now that Benjamin is gone. The team is focusing the offense around McCaffrey and now he is the guy for the Panthers. He has much more value in PPR scoring and he should see a bigger workload in the second half.