The Dynasty offseason is a time to reflect on your previous season, access your current roster and prepare for your upcoming Rookie draft. The offseason is also a great time to be active in your league’s trade market. Trades, along with draft picks can improve your roster, kick start your rebuild and potentially be the final pieces needed as you push for a Championship.
Selling a Dynasty asset can be difficult, and at times risky. Ideally, we seek to sell players at or near their peak and get as large of a return as possible. The reality is forecasting a player’s peak can be daunting task. Things change in this league fast. 10 players from 2018’s top 24 didn’t finish inside 2019’s top-24. 42% of last year’s top performers didn’t even break into the best-25 players of this season.
Of those 15 that did remain in the top 24, seven of them had a worse season than they did last year. On the flip side, six of last year’s top 24 remained and improved. Basically what all this means is 18 of last year’s top 24 (71%), regressed or stayed the same. Only 29% of the best players in 2018 improved in 2019. Staying in the top 24 year in and year out is very difficult.
I have selected 12 players that I am interested in selling this offseason and I have tiered them based on what I would expect your return to be. The top tier are guys that you should be selling for a large return, the middle tier should bring you decent return, and the bottom tier guys are players that hold some value that I feel you should get off your rosters while you can.
1. Top Tier Sells
Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers
Aaron Jones finished the 2019 fantasy season as the #2 overall scoring RB in PPR scoring with 298.50 fantasy points. His final stat line was 236 attempts for 1084 yards and 16 touchdowns with 49 receptions for 474 yards and another 3 scores.
There are a number of red flags here when it comes to Aaron Jones, the first of which was his boom bust games in 2019. Jones had a 49.20 week, a 41.60 week and five weeks under 10 PPR fantasy points. Any running back that busts in 31% of his starts concerns me.
The second red flag here is the 19 total touchdowns. 19 scores ranks tied for 30th all-time for number of touchdowns in a single season. Of the other 39 that have scored 19 or more in a single season, only 6 have done it more than once and only Emmitt Smith has accomplished 19 or more scores in three seasons.
The third red flag is Jones’ receiving totals. His 68 targets are 94.3% higher than his previous best and his 49 receptions are 88.5% higher than his previous best. Part of this can be attributed to a change in the offense, but the bigger reason is the absence of Devante Adams for five of the Packers games in 2019. In those five contests, Jones saw 44% of his targets and 47% of his receptions. In his other 11 games Jones saw a total of 38 targets and had 26 catches.
The final read flag is workload. Aaron Jones had 285 total touches in 2019. Jones averaged 17.8 touches per game in 2019 and when compared to the rest of the top 12 running backs, only Mark Ingram’s 15.2, and Austin Ekeler’s 14 are below Jones. Jamaal Williams will continue to have a role in the Packers offense in 2020. Williams had 146 touches in 2019 in 14 games played. Williams delivered 4.9 yards per touch compared to Jones’ 5.5. Jones is the better back but much to the chagrin of Jones owners, Williams will remain relevant.
Aaron Jones had a very productive 2019 season, a season that I would bet against happening again anytime soon if ever again. Jones is on top of my 2019 players to sell list with a bullet, and he should bring you quite the return in a transaction.
Lamar Jackson, QB, Baltimore Ravens
What a difference a year makes. Prior to the start of the 2019 season the last we saw of Lamar Jackson was during the Ravens 23-17 loss at home to the Los Angeles Chargers in the Wildcard round. A game that was so bad for Lamar that he was booed off the field and the Ravens fans were calling for Joe Flacco to relieve him. Think about that for a few minutes.
Now before everyone loses their minds here and questions my sanity, consider how good of a season Jackson had and weigh that against the odds of him repeating it let alone improving upon it.
Jackson set an all-time record for fantasy points per game this season (27.85) among quarterbacks and ranks seventh overall in the PPR scoring format. That, simply put, is ridiculous. Jackson has performed to incredible levels this year and is over what top-notch historic running backs like LaDainian Tomlinson and Priest Holmes did back in 2003.
Jackson threw for a league-leading 36 touchdowns through 15 games, while ranking 26th in pass attempts, and 27th in completions. Jackson led the lead with a 9% TD percentage. To put that number into perspective Lamar’s 2019 season was the best in terms of TD% since Peyton Manning’s 9.9% in 2004. TD% is not sustainable. I was big on Russell Wilson regressing in 2019 after he finished his 2018 with an 8.0% TD rate; he finished 2019 with a TD% of 6.0. Achieving at a level as high as 9% is outrageous, to do it again is damn near unthinkable.
Lamar finished the year with 1,206 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns. The rushing total set a new record for quarterbacks in league history. In a PPR scoring, his rushing totals alone would’ve finished as the No. 22 running back. That is another number I do not see Jackson sustaining, let alone improving upon.
Now just because I label him a sell, doesn’t mean you give him away. Jackson is an extremely valuable asset, especially in a Super-Flex or 2 Quarterback league. As noted above his rushing numbers equated to RB22 in PPR scoring. If you removed his rushing totals from his fantasy points scored, he would rank as the No. 9 quarterback. When you started Jackson in 2019 you were essentially getting a top-10 quarterback and a top-20 running back.
Lamar is a sell candidate in my opinion and one that should get you a King’s ransom should you move him.
Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angles Chargers
Keenan Allen is as close to sure thing as they come over the past three seasons, at the WR position. He has finished his seasons since 2017 as WR2, WR12, and WR6 in PPR scoring with 284.2, 260.1, and 261.5 PPR fantasy points. He has 6 touchdown catches in each of the last three years and his catch totals are 102, 97,104. Since the start of the 2017 season, Keenan Allen ranks 5th in total receptions with 303.
So why the sell here, there are a few reasons; 1. For such a consistent wide receiver, his 2019 season was anything but. In the first three weeks of the 2019 season, Allen had 29 catches for 404 yards and 3 touchdowns. The remainder of the season Allen averaged 6 catches for 61 yards and he scored 3 times. His first three games he was putting up an average of 29.2 PPR P/G, he was WR1 at the time. From weeks 4-16, Allen was WR26 averaging 12.6 PPR P/G.
The drop off leads into my second reason to sell Keenan Allen and that is quarterback play. Phillip Rivers is likely done in Los Angles and when it comes to Keenan Allen this is not a good thing. Rivers has seen better days, but his chemistry with Allen is unprecedented and his ability to target him at a high rate (26.5% since the start of 2017) is hard to match.
Rivers was inconsistent throughout the majority of the season and Allen struggled right along with his QB. If by chance Rivers is retained by the Chargers, I would expect his play to continue to deteriorate thus having a negative impact on Keenan Allen. If Rivers does the expected and leaves the Chargers, Tyrod Taylor is likely the starting QB in 2020.
Taylor’s best season came back in 2015 a season in which he went 242/380 for 3035 yards and 20 TD passes. The leading receiver for the Bills that season had a respectable 96 targets, but only 60 receptions, that WR was Sammy Watkins. Rivers worst season as a Charger in terms of passing yards was 3152 in 2017.
The opposing defenses will strive to take Allen away and force Taylor thru his progressions, which is not a strength of Tyrod’s.
Keenan Allen should struggle to be near what he has been for the past three seasons and barring a free agent signing, trade or fortunate draft choice at the QB position may never be the same again. Send Keenan Allen to a contending team and remind that owner of his consistent performance the past three seasons to maximize your return.
Chris Godwin, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Chris Godwin was hyped prior to the start of the year, but I am not sure anyone would have anticipated the season he had. He racked up the 21st-most fantasy points (276.1) and fantasy points per game (19.7) in PPR scoring. Godwin was the second-best wideout of the year only behind Michael Thomas and he bested teammate Mike Evan’s’ production easily in 2019.
The question Godwin owners have to ask themselves is, can he do this again? Can you trust the 23-year-old wide receiver to repeat such an incredible year, in a Jameis Winston led offense, sharing the field with another top 12 wide receiver such as Evans? To be honest it’s not going to be easy, nor should it be expected.
Only 12 offenses in history have featured two wide receivers that finished the year each with at least 118 targets each. Three of them (Cleveland, LA Rams, and Tampa Bay) did so this season, so I’m leaving them out of this. That leaves nine other pairs of receivers, all of them playing in the seasons ranging from 2015 to 2018.
While 198 WR seasons since 2000 (3,770 in the dataset) have had back-to-back years of 118-plus targets, only two of those nine pairs ( Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders; Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper) maintained that large volume in back-to-back seasons while playing on the same team (Denver and Oakland respectively in 2015 and 2016). That means either Mike Evans or Chris Godwin are more than probable to miss on that 118-target mark in 2020.
Even if he keeps a good amount of targets up, Godwin has had only four-of-15 games in which he has beaten his Expected Fantasy Points by more than 10 Fantasy Points in 2019. To that, it must be added that his nine receiving touchdowns through 14 games are the second-most in the league entering Week 17 and that he and Marvin Jones are the only players to have caught that many TDs in fewer than 15 games this year. Touchdown regression is extremely likely in 2020.
There have been 52 wide receivers since 2000 to have seasons of 119 or fewer targets while catching nine or more touchdowns. Of those 52, only 12 improved their FP/G in the next season. The problem is, none of those receivers had posted a season of more than 16 FP/G the prior year. Godwin averaged 19.7 in 2019. Also, just four receivers were able to score more than nine touchdowns, while the rest regressed in that department.
This is not to say Godwin is not a good WR to own on your roster, but chances are he regresses big time come 2020, and as a result I would be looking to cash out.
2. Middle Tier Sells
Tyler Lockett, WR, Seattle Seahawks
Locket had an unsustainable success rate back in 2018, with 10 touchdown catches on 70 targets and 57 receptions. Through smoke and mirrors Lockett finished 2018 as WR18.
In 2019, Lockett saw a spike in targets 110, increased his catches to 82, and went over 1000 yards for the first time in his career. Lockett finished as WR17 in 2019.
As we move forward into 2020, expect the Seahawks to continue with the run first approach on offense regardless of how boring and frustrating it is to watch. In 2018 Seattle attempted a league low 427 passes and in 2019 they improved to 23rd with 517 attempts. In 2020 don’t expect much of a change. In addition the role of D.K. Metcalf will increase and the Seahawks will add another WR via the draft. In the end I see a reduced role in the offense for Lockett, similar to 2018 without the ridiculous productivity.
DeVante Parker, WR, Miami Dolphins
DeVante Parker had his most successful season in 2019. He set career highs in targets, receptions, yards and touchdowns. He became the WR we had all heard he could be for the last 5 seasons. The odds of this being his career year are quite high and as a result its time to cash out.
Miami will likely have a new quarterback in 2020, moving on from Ryan Fitzpatrick. I am not sure who the Dolphins signal caller will be in 2020, but it is safe to say they won’t be a gunslinger like Fitzmagic. From weeks 7 -16 once Fitzpatrick was the starter in Miami he was the QB4 overall. In that span he averaged 288 passing yards and 1.8 TD/game. Parker in that same span was WR2 overall averaging 9 targets, 5 catches and 84 yards with .7 of a TD.
With Josh Rosen as his QB in weeks 1 thru 6, Parker was averaging 6 targets, 2 catches and .4 of a TD. He was the WR59. QB clearly matters here.
Also worth noting was the injury to Preston Williams, that ended his season in week 9. The targets and subsequently catches and yards for Parker increased once Williams went down. With Williams on the field Parker averaged 4.5 receptions and 50 yards. Without Williams his average increased to 5 catches and 95 yards. With Preston Williams out of the lineup, Parker became the deep ball threat.
Williams will be back in 2020, the Dolphins will have a lesser QB, and the Parker will regress. The selling window most Parker owners never thought would be there is wide open, take advantage of it.
Darren Waller, TE, Oakland Raiders
Not all players I look to sell are players I don’t like. Darren Waller is a player that I love.
Waller appeared in all 16 games for the Raiders in 2019 and finished with 117 targets, 90 receptions for 1145 yards and 3 touchdowns. 2019 was Waller’s first year of significance; he has been in the league since 2015 and had some off-field issues derail the start of his career. Clearly, he broke out in 2019 and the argument can be made that he should have had an even better season than he did based on his yardage vs. touchdowns.
As we move forwards into 2020 and the Raiders first season in Las Vegas, there are some unknowns with this offense. It is likely that Derek Carr is likely not the starting quarterback, and if he is out who is in. Carr was middle of the pack in yards per attempt last season, his replacement may be better or worse. Hunter Renfrow started to get going, then suffered a rib injury. Upon return from injury he went over 100 yards with a touchdown in each contest. I also expect the Raiders to add some pass catchers this offseason.
Will Darren Waller fall off a cliff in 2020? No. Will he regress? Yes. Based on the likely regression I am selling here.
Tyler Higbee, TE, Los Angeles Rams
Tyler Higbee ended the 2019 white hot. Over the last 5 games of the season Higbee saw 56 targets, caught 43 of them for 522 yards and 2 touchdowns. His 9 games prior to that; 27 targets, 21 receptions, 192 yards and a touchdown.
Higbee’s last 5 games of 2019 saw him exceed his seasonal career highs in targets by 11, receptions by 18, yardage by 227. Gerald Everett was injured in the first game of Higbee’s magical run and missed the next three weeks. Gerald Everett by no means is Travis Kelce or George Kittle, but he was the primary pass catching TE for the Rams prior to his injury and Higbee’s explosion.
The Rams offense seemed to change in conjunction with these games, was it the fact that Higbee was hot, that Copper Kupp was not, or was it a combination of both and the fact that quarterback Jared Goff was getting killed by the opposing team’s pass rush? Simply in my opinion it was a combination of all three.
In 2020 the Rams will have upgraded their offensive line, Kupp will bounce back, and Gerald Everett will be healthy. All of these will cannibalize Tyler Higbee. Higbee will be somewhat relevant, but he will not be close to the TE1 he was in the last five weeks of 2019.
3. Lower Tier Sells
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
Selling Andy Dalton is limited to Super-Flex or 2 QB leagues, if you can find a deal for him in a 1QB league more power to you. I like Andy Dalton and the fact is that despite the end nearing for Dalton he has been a viable fantasy QB for quite a few years.
The Bengals played their hand last season regarding Dalton by benching him in favor of Ryan Finley. After that experiment failed, they went back to Dalton to finish out the season. Entering the 2020 season, with the Cincinnati Bengals holding the first overall draft pick in the upcoming draft they will almost certainly grab a quarterback and that quarterback is likely Joe Burrow.
The Bengals with or without Burrow will not be good in 2020. There is a possibility that Burrow is eased into this offense. There is little to no reason to expose your franchise quarterback in a way that can affect him long term. Let Dalton start the season and bring Burrow in later on in the season around week 6-8, like what the Bengals did with Finley last season.
There isn’t much tread left on Dalton’s tires and selling him now might be your best bet to get anything at all for him.
Ronald Jones, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Rojo is a running back that you need to sell. He is a running back that you need to sell now. His value is currently as high as it is likely to ever be. Now that statement seems strange, but here is why it is true.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to add a running back this offseason. It will be via trade, free agent signing, draft choice, or some combination of the three.
In 25 games over the span of two seasons, Ronald Jones has totalled 768 rushing yards on 172 carries, and despite several opportunities could not shake Peyton Barber to grab a hold of that backfield. Jones did show some promise in the pass catching game hauling in 31 of 40 targets for 309 yards.
Ronald Jones could very well be a player you would want to add if he gets a shot in another organization, the problem with that is it makes little to no sense for the Bucs to move on from him. He has 2 years remaining on his deal, he’s a cheap cap hit with little cap savings if released. He likely remains in a limited capacity perhaps as a pass catching running back, or simply a change of pace guy for the new primary ball carrier.
The Ronald Jones truthers are still out there, find them in your league and sell this asset while he still holds value.
Zach Pascal, WR, Indianapolis Colts
Pascal saw 72 targets in 2019, turned those into 41 receptions for 607 yards and 5 touchdowns. Not too shabby of a stat line for the undrafted wide receiver. The reality is the stars aligned for Pascal in 2019. T.Y. Hilton missed significant time, free agent signing Devin Funchess was on IR, rookie Parris Campbell was injured, and Eric Ebron was lost due to injury. All of this added up to Pascal as the only viable pass catching option most weeks for the Colts.
The odds of catching lighting in a bottle next season or going forward at all seems unlikely. I would look to unload him prior to the start of 2020, just do so with reasonable expectations of a return.
Kyle Rudolph, TE, Minnesota Vikings
Kyle Rudolph finished as the TE14 in 2019, a season after finishing as the TE7. In both seasons Rudolph disappeared for large portions of the season.
Expect the decline to continue as the Vikings move forward with 2019 2nd round selection Irv Smith Jr. as the primary pass catching TE in their offense.
Kyle Rudolph is one of the more overrated TE in fantasy football. Ove the course of the last two seasons, Rudy has delivered single point production in PPR scoring 18 times. 25 times if you include the 2017 season. In two of those seasons he was a top 7 TE. The name stills holds some value. Every league has a TE needy team or two, target those owners and sell Rudy while you can.