Week 10 of the NFL Season featured some surprising upsets and interesting performances. Like each week, it offered another piece of the puzzle as we try to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to a player’s long-term value. We’re seeing some trends and some off-field events have created some opportunities. That gives us a chance to read the tea leaves and try to get ahead of our fellow dynasty players. That’s what this weekly column is all about.
As will be the case throughout the season, each week I’ll be taking stock of what we’ve learned. I’ll be offering one player per position—QB, RB, WR and TE—who improved their stock, and one who saw their stock slip. For those trying to win now and those playing the long game, it’s important to pounce at the right time. So, without further ado, here’s Week 10 of the Dynasty Stock Watch.
Stock Up: Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
About: Newton made news this week as he signed back in Carolina, the team that made him the No. 1 overall Draft Pick in 2011. Newton led the Panthers to the Super Bowl after the 2015 season but struggled for a few years after. He appeared in just two games for the Panthers in 2019 and was set free. Last season he finally landed in New England, struggling a bit as a passer but posting enough rushing stats to finish as QB16. This off-season, Newton was locked in a battle with rookie Mac Jones for the starting job. Jones won and Newton was released, finding no takers for the first part of the season. Now, back in Carolina, he appears to have a shot to be the starter with the Panthers losing Sam Darnold to a broken shoulder and placing him on IR. On Sunday, Newton made his debut, scoring a pair of touchdowns on his first two plays, one rushing and one passing. While it’s a small sample, and that likely won’t continue at the same rate, Newton showed he’s still got skills and could become relevant in this return, especially given the Panthers are likely looking for some options given Darnold’s performance. For those that have stashed Newton all this time, it looks like that gamble is about to pay dividends.
Stock Down: Mike White, New York Jets
About: Let’s be honest, it wasn’t going to last. The Jets spent the No. 2 overall pick on Zach Wilson and despite his uneven performance, he was always going to get the job back. But White looked strong in his relief effort, enough that it made some hopeful. In his first start, White led the Jets to a win over the Bengals. In his second start, he was 7-for-11 for 95 yards and a touchdown before leaving with an injury. But yesterday, reality came crashing in as White threw four interceptions and no touchdowns before being hooked for Joe Flacco. It was nice while it lasted but White’s future likely isn’t as bright as some had hoped.
Stock Up: A.J. Dillon, Green Bay Packers
About: Dillon was taken in the Second Round of the 2020 NFL Draft. For a time, this off-season, it looked like Dillon might end up as the lead back in Green Bay. Instead, Aaron Jones re-signed and seemed to return to his dominant role. The past few weeks, Dillon has gotten more opportunities and it’s turned out well. Dillon carried the load for the Packers after Jones left with an injury Sunday, rushing for two fourth-quarter touchdowns to put the game out of reach. He already has 421 rushing yards and two touchdowns, catching 16 passes for 162 yards and a touchdown. He’s shown he can help shoulder the load and seems to be working himself into a bigger role in the offense, which could prove to be a boon to those who drafted Dillon in 2020 hoping for a player that could be a weekly start.
Stock Down: Myles Gaskin, Miami Dolphins
About: Gaskin is the lead back for the Dolphins but that hasn’t meant much. I had hoped he’d be an RB2 if given the opportunity but the workload hasn’t been consistent and worse yet, even when he does get carries the production isn’t consistent. Gaskin has appeared in 10 games, starting seven. That’s the same as he logged in 2020, splitting time due to injury. In that time, he’s seen 100 carries for 344 yards and a touchdown. That’s 42 fewer carries and 240 fewer yards than he racked up in 2020. The same is true of his receiving. He’s caught 38 passes for 202 yards and three touchdowns. In 2020, he caught 41 for 388. Gaskin has only logged five games with double-digit PPR points, seeing less than 10 points in five games and less than six points in three games. He lacks consistency and it’s fair to assume Miami will address the running back position in the off-season, all of which leaves Gaskin’s long-term value murky at best.
Stock Up: Bryan Edwards, Las Vegas Raiders
About: Finally, we saw Edwards as a featured part of the Raiders’ passing offense. On Sunday night he caught three passes for 88 yards and a touchdown. Yes, he only saw four targets, but it’s an encouraging performance. Edwards is the last man standing from a 2020 Raiders’ draft class that has turned out to be something of a bust. He’s also the most talented receiver left in a depleted group. If he can continue to see targets and produce we could be closer to seeing the player many hoped for when he was snagged in rookie drafts last off-season.
Stock Down: Jalen Reagor, Philadelphia Eagles
About: While DeVonta Smith has his second huge game, catching two touchdown passes, Reagor remains an afterthought in the Eagles’ passing game. Reagor was a First Round pick in the 2020 draft but struggled to stay on the field as a rookie. He seemed to at least be drawing targets to start the season, seeing 19 targets over the first three games. In the seven games since, he’s seen 16 targets total. In yesterday’s win, Reagor saw two targets, catching a pass for 12 yards. He appears to have been jumped by several options on the depth chart, including receiver Quez Watkins. For those who thought Reagor had a chance to be an every week starter, it’s time to reconsider his value both now and for the future, especially given that the Eagles aren’t an incredibly high-volume pass offense.
Stock Up: Tyler Conklin, Minnesota Vikings
About: When Kyle Rudolph signed with the Giants, it seemed like the Vikings would have a new tight end leading their attack. But third year man Irv Smith, Jr., suffered a season-ending injury, throwing the position into disarray. The Vikings moved to acquire former Jet Chris Herndon, and many got excited he would be the guy. Instead, quietly, it’s been Tyler Conklin doing the heavy lifting. He’s seen 49 targets, catching 35 for 353 yards and three touchdowns. That includes a pair of touchdowns on Sunday as the Vikings beat the Chargers. Conklin currently sits as TE10 on the season, not only a good option for the 2021 season but looking like a player that will have an impact in the future, too.
Stock Down: O.J. Howard, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
About: It seems like hopes have been high for Howard for years but it never quite happens. Last season, prior to injury, Howard saw 19 targets, catching 11 and looking like a player that might thrive in the Buccaneers’ offense. This season, even with Rob Gronkowski missing a huge swath of the games due to injury, Howard has been a non-factor. In nine games, six starts, he’s seen only 19 targets, catching 13 for 125 yards—21 fewer yards and one fewer touchdown on two more catches than in four games in 2020. In yesterday’s loss, he didn’t see a single target even with Gronkowski and Antonio Brown out. Howard doesn’t appear to have any value with the Buccaneers in 2021 and it’s hard to imagine he’s going to be a hot commodity for another team in the off-season.
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.