We saw some interesting performances and some misfires this Sunday in the NFL. In dynasty, we’re in it for the long haul. That doesn’t mean we can ignore the day-to-day fluctuations. That’s what the Stock Watch is all about. Each week, I look at one player whose stock is on the rise and one whose stock is on the decline at each of the key fantasy positions. Let’s look at some of the big swings from Week 18.
Stock Up: Mason Rudolph, Pittsburgh Steelers
About: Look, I get that Rudolph hasn’t been lighting up the scoreboard and stat line. But it was fair to wonder if we’d ever seen him start again after a couple of seasons deep on the depth chart. But Rudolph got the call and responded, winning the last three games to get the Steelers into the playoffs. He’s also likely to start over a healthy Kenny Pickett next weekend. Is Rudolph’s future in Pittsburgh? That’s unclear. It’s also unclear if he’s got a future as a starter beyond 2023. But after this stretch, heading into the off-season, he’s a player I’d roster.
Stock Down: Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles
About: Let’s not overreact—Hurts should still be rostered, is still a starter, and likely will still be a QB1 in the rankings. But this stretch to end the season—culminating with a 7-for-16 effort for 55 yards and an interception before leaving with injury—should give us all pause. The Eagles looked out of sorts down the stretch, losing five of the last six to drop all the way to the Wild Card. Hurts went from looking like an MVP last season to struggling mightily to close 2023. It’s worth watching moving forward.
Stock Up: Najee Harris, Pittsburgh Steelers
About: No one benefitted more from the change at Offensive Coordinator on the Steelers than Harris. He went from essentially being passed over by Jaylen Warren to looking like a great starting running back option again. He rushed for two touchdowns in a huge day in Week 17, then carried the Steelers to the playoffs with 112 yards and a touchdown Sunday. He’s also gone over 1,000 yards in each of his three seasons. Those holding Harris should be breathing a sigh of relief.
Stock Down: Alexander Mattison, Minnesota Vikings
About: Mattison started the season with a great chance to take a step forward. But at each phase, he’s proven he’s not the guy for the Vikings. First, the team traded to get Cam Akers. Down the stretch, it was the emergence of Ty Chandler. Mattison will likely be back in Minnesota again in 2024, but I think he’ll be a complimentary back at best. If you were looking for a solid starter in fantasy, look elsewhere.
Stock Up: Nico Collins, Houston Texans
About: Collins has had a monster season, and he stepped up big when the pressure was on. Nine receptions for 195 yards and a touchdown to help the Texans go from worst to first in the AFC South. Collins looks like a great No. 1 receiving option and a great player to pair with C.J. Stroud moving forward. If you’ve been holding him in fantasy, you’re sitting pretty going into 2024.
Stock Down: A.J. Brown, Philadelphia Eagles
About: One reception for nine yards. That’s all Brown managed in Week 18. I mentioned above the struggles of his quarterback, and it has trickled down to Brown. He’s a high-profile name who has come up small down the stretch. And this game came with DeVonta Smith out of the lineup. It will be worth watching Brown in the playoffs, but it might be time to adjust expectations for Brown and this Eagles’ passing offense in 2024.
Stock Up: Jake Ferguson, Dallas Cowboys
About: The Dallas offense is about Dak Prescott and CeeDee Lamb. But those two can’t do it alone. While Brandin Cooks has stepped up some down the stretch, the Cowboys’ No. 2 option in the passing game all season has been Ferguson. He caught six passes for 69 yards on Sunday and remains a key cog for the Cowboys and a boon for fantasy players.
Stock Down: Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers
About: What does the future hold for the Chargers? It’s unclear. But one of those who has struggled to establish themselves this year is Everett. He was a trendy late-round option for people who waited on tight end. And yet, he’s been inconsistent. That continued Sunday. No Mike Williams and no Keenan Allen, and yet Everett still managed just one reception. He was the third highest scoring tight end on his own team. His time as a reliable fantasy start is over.
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.