The NFL’s post-season is coming in for a landing. The Super Bowl is Sunday, and the season will officially be over. This week, I’m looking at those who helped themselves and hurt themselves throughout the NFL post-season. Today, we’re looking at losers.
Stock Down: Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins
About: Without a long-term contract and coming into the season with serious health questions, the pressure was on Tua in 2023. He answered the bell with a strong season, starting all 17 games. But the Dolphins slipped in the second half of the season and had a dreadful post-season showing. Yes, it was historically cold, and the team was beaten up. But Tua had a chance to show he could be a leading franchise quarterback. He’ll likely get a long-term deal this off-season, but we still haven’t seen enough to feel confident he can lead a team to the next level.
Stock Down: Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens
About: Jackson is likely to win the NFL MVP award this week for his work in the regular season. But, to secure his legacy, he wants to go further. Things seemed to set up perfectly for Jackson this post-season as the No. 1 overall seed with the AFC Championship Game at home. And yet, he completed just over 50 percent of his passes, rushed for 54 yards, and threw just one touchdown and one interception in a loss to the Chiefs. Questions about whether he can ever win the big one will linger again all this off-season.
Stock Down: Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys
About: It was a good, not great, season for Pollard, who played on the Franchise Tag. That was the case in the post-season, too, where he managed just 56 yards on 15 carries and 29 yards receiving on seven receptions. Heading into an off-season looking for a contract, Pollard no longer looks like a franchise back.
Stock Down: Dalvin Cook, Baltimore Ravens
About: Cook followed a dreadful regular season with a non-existent post-season contribution. He signed with the Ravens to be a backfield weapon to help push them to a Super Bowl. He had 23 yards on eight carries in the Divisional Round and never even saw the field in the AFC Championship Game. Given his 2023 performance, it’s hard to say what value he’ll have on the open market. For fantasy managers, that means he’s little more than a roster-clogger at this point in time.
Stock Down: Christian Watson, Green Bay Packers
About: Theoretically, Watson is the best receiver on the Packers’ roster. But he struggled to stay on the field for the regular season. Despite that, the Packers made the post-season. While Watson was available, he hardly made any on-field impact in the playoffs. The Packers scored 48 points in getting a Wild Card win in Dallas and pushed the 49ers to the brink in the Divisional Round. And yet, Watson was an afterthought. He saw three targets and caught two passes for 20 yards. He’s far from the best receiver on his team, and, in fact, I’d be looking to move him this off-season before his role is further diminished.
Stock Down: A.J. Brown, Philadelphia Eagles
About: Brown and the Eagles aren’t vibing right now. The team has undergone some major coaching shifts because it clearly wasn’t working at the end of the 2023 season. But Brown didn’t even bother to show up for the Eagles’ playoff game. He was on the injury report, so that could be a part of it. But he didn’t even travel with the team, which feels like a grim sign. That, combined with diminished production, leaves his stock sagging as he heads into the off-season. In fact, I might look to move Brown in case his breakup with the Eagles becomes permanent.
Stock Down: Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams
About: The Rams found something in receiver Puka Nacua and running back Kyren Williams. That, combined with veteran receiver Cooper Kupp, leaves less room for a role for Higbee. In fact, Higbee saw just one target and caught no passes in the Rams’ post-season game with the Lions. He’s still a good role player, but in terms of fantasy, Higbee isn’t a player I want to bank on.
Stock Down: Dawson Knox, Buffalo Bills
About: It was fair to worry when the Bills drafted Dalton Kincaid. Now, we’ve seen the offense under Joe Brady work best when it focuses on the run, spreading its few targets to Stefon Diggs, Kincaid, and emerging receiver Khalil Shakir. With Brady back for the 2024 season, it’s fair to accept there will be a big fantasy hit for Knox. He’s still a good NFL contributor for the Bills, but he doesn’t have a role in your fantasy lineup.
Matthew Fox is a die-hard NFL fan and Broncos’ homer. He’s a member of the FSWA. You can find more from him on Twitter @knighthawk7734 or as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast, a part of the Campus2Canton Network.