We’re through 11 weeks of the NFL season, and we continue to see some surprising results on the field. All of that has made each Thursday, Sunday, and Monday exciting as we head toward December and the stretch run for the post-season. For fantasy players, this is the time of year when you’re buckling down to make a playoff or title run or perhaps looking ahead to 2022 and beyond. Every week we learn more about a player’s value and fit in the offense, and information is critical as we play the long game. That’s what this weekly check-in is all about.
As will be the case throughout the season, I’ll be taking stock of what we’ve learned each week. 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 crucial to pounce at the right time. So, here’s Week 10 of the Dynasty Stock Watch without further ado.
Stock Up: Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco 49ers
About: I know, I’m surprised, too. The 49ers mortgaged a chunk of the future to move up and snag Trey Lance at the No. 3 overall pick in the draft. We’ve seen Lance play at times and even start a game, but he isn’t the 49ers’ best option, and frankly, might not be the team’s best quarterback. The 49ers won again on Sunday and moved back to 5-5, squarely in the playoff race. A lot of that is thanks to Garoppolo, who has been QB3 over the past four weeks. The offense is going strong with Jimmy G. at the helm, and the 49ers are making a run. I don’t expect him to come out of the lineup any time soon, and it’s fair to wonder what his future might hold, even if the 49ers decide to turn to Lance in 2022.
Stock Down: Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
About: Wilson has perennially been a Top 12 option at quarterback and seemed to be on that path again in 2021. Then he broke his middle finger, missed three games for rehab, and returned to face the Packers and Cardinals in back-to-back weeks. I thought Wilson would bounce back in style. Instead, it’s been a disaster. Wilson has been QB24 the past two weeks, the Seahawks are 3-7, and it’s fair to wonder what the future holds. Rumors of Wilson leaving have swirled since the last off-season, and given the dysfunction in 2021, it seems more and more likely Wilson is playing somewhere else in 2022.
Stock Up: Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts
About: We knew Taylor was good this is more a matter of where he sits. The question for Taylor wasn’t usage but rather talent and opportunity in Frank Reich’s system. In 2020, when given a chance, Taylor looked great. He was a Top 5 running back for me in dynasty before the season, but after 11 weeks, he’s No. 1. I like the talent of some other backs, but Taylor is getting the usage, and he’s shining. He’s the No. 1 running back in fantasy and has recorded 1,122 yards and 13 touchdowns in 11 games, 47 yards shy of his total as a rookie with two more rushing touchdowns already than he had in 2020. He’s also added 32 receptions for 322 yards and two touchdowns, more yards and touchdowns on fewer receptions than he had a rookie. And there are still seven games left. Taylor is making the most of his touches and showing he can be a three-down beast.
Stock Down: Zack Moss, Buffalo Bills
About: The Bills are struggling and a big part of the offensive woes is the lack of rushing production. Moss is RB36 on the season, and while teammate Devin Singletary at RB35 is no great shakes either, Moss feels like more of a disappointment. I like the talent and potential, but the production has been lacking. He’s carried 75 times for 265 yards, averaging a woeful 3.5 yards per carry. He has four touchdowns and has caught 18 passes for 166 yards and a touchdown to buoy his numbers, but the production isn’t there. Moss has seen 21 carries for 57 yards and a touchdown in the last four games. That’s a four-game total. That’s not enough to feel good about his role.
Stock Up: Elijah Moore, New York Jets
About: Once is nice, twice peaks my interest, but three times feels like a trend. Three weeks in a row, Moore has found the end zone and been a featured part of the passing game. He’s caught touchdowns from Mike White, Josh Johnson, and Joe Flacco. During that span, he’s WR2 and has seen 25 targets, catching 18 passes for 269 yards and four touchdowns. He’s delivering on the promise we saw on draft day and in training camp. Let’s hope that the return of Zach Wilson keeps that streak going.
Stock Down: A.J. Brown, Tennessee Titans
About: Just about the time Brown was heating up, injuries appear to have dampened his outlook a bit. The Titans lost Derrick Henry for the rest of the regular season and saw Julio Jones go on injured reserve. That leaves Brown as the last star standing for Tennessee, and that’s made getting him the ball a challenge. In the past three games, Brown has seen 24 targets, which is encouraging, but he’s caught just 11 passes for 106 yards total. Following three explosive games, Brown is back to struggling to produce flex-worthy numbers, all of which provide some questions about his ability to have consistency in this offense for the long term.
Stock Up: Adam Trautman, New Orleans Saints
About: After being left for dead early in the season, Trautman is quietly coming back to life. Trautman has seen 27 targets in the past four weeks, at least six in each game. He’s caught 16 passes for 141 yards and a touchdown. While not incredible, it’s a sign that Trautman is shaping into a factor in the Saints’ passing offense and could be trending toward the TE2 with the upside he figured to be heading into the season.
Stock Down: Juwan Johnson, New Orleans Saints
About: In a corresponding move, the bloom is off the rose for Johnson. Johnson burst on the scene with two touchdown receptions on opening day. He seemed to be a guy that Jameis Winston was looking for in the offense. Since then, Johnson has caught six passes for 87 yards and a touchdown total. In other words, he’s a non-factor week-to-week.
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.