Buy, Sell, Hold: AFC East Stock Watch

By: Jay Pounds (@JayPoundsNFL)

Can you believe it? Before my next article releases, we will have an NFL game to watch! The Cowboys and Steelers open things up in the Hall of Fame game on August 5th, 2021, in Canton, Ohio. If I had to guess why the NFL would want the Steelers playing four preseason games, it is because they have a plan to sap Ben Roethlisberger’s arm even earlier this season. See I make jokes about my own team too. In all honesty, I don’t care if it is Kendall Hinton starting the game at quarterback for both teams, I will be tuned in.

Rebuilding owners, it is time for another article to help you rebuild your Dynasty Owner roster! I am sure you have all figured out by now what this article will be. If you are just tuning in, we will be covering the AFC East in today’s article. The past three weeks I have covered every player in the three remaining AFC divisions (that we are not talking about today) and placed them into three separate categories – Buy, Sell, and Hold. Remember these players are being viewed in the eyes of a rebuilding owner. The Buy category are players you will see are placed there for several reasons but the most important is they should be near the prime of their career as you wrap up your rebuild. The players in the Hold category tend to be players with a lot of question marks, players whose value has taken a significant hit, or players who are stuck behind a stud. The players in the Sell category are aging veterans who will either be on their last leg, or out of the league by the time your roster is ready to compete for championships. Please feel free to let me know if there are any players you feel different about than I do on the old Twitter machine.

BUY

Buffalo Bills

  • Gabriel Davis (3 years, $998,595)

I have not been shy this off season about my love affair for Gabriel Davis. Davis is someone I am expecting to break out in a big way and will be buying him everywhere I can. Davis is a young cheap receiver in an up-and-coming offense that we have already seen put up huge numbers.

Miami Dolphins

  • Tua Tagovailoa (3 years, $7,568,859)

Tua had a very disappointing year in 2020 but I expect him to bounce back and have a good sophomore campaign. If you remember, it was not long ago we were talking about Tua being the clear-cut number 1 QB in his class, ahead of names like Joe Burrow and Justin Herbert.

  • Salvon Ahmed (1 year, $695,000)

I am not sure you will find another person who is as high on Ahmed as I am. I have loved Ahmed since his days in college at Washington. I personally feel Ahmed can be a solid middle of the road back if he can figure out how to stay healthy. If Gaskin goes down, the Dolphins have a good amount of trust in Ahmed.

  • Preston Williams (1 year, $588,333)

At this time last season, Preston Williams was being talked about like the second coming of Jerry Rice. An injury and a year later, he is flying far enough under the radar that you should be looking at buying Williams.

  • Jaylen Waddle (4 years, $6,771,498)

The speedster Jaylen Waddle was handpicked by Tua Tagovailoa in this year’s draft. The Dolphins had their choice between a pair of Alabama alumni, Waddle and DeVonta Smith, and wound up choosing Waddle. I am convinced Tua had major input on this decision, which should mean big things are coming for Waddle.

  • Lynn Bowden (3 years, $1,177,354)

I am honestly not too sure what to make of Lynn Bowden. He came into the NFL as a running back with the Raiders and moved on to the Dolphins just a few weeks after his NFL career started. I believe Bowden as a running back is dead but Bowden the playmaker could turn out to be valuable later down the road. Buy Bowden cheap and see what happens.

  • Hunter Long (4 years, $1,242,176)

While I am not particularly high on Hunter Long, I know a ton of people in the industry who are. If Long turns out to be the starter long-term in Miami, he will be worth whatever you paid plus some. I would say the Dolphins do not plan to extend Mike Gesicki after drafting Long in the 3rd round.

  • Gerrid Doaks (4 years, $894,025)

Just as Myles Gaskin was, Gerrid Doaks was drafted in the 7th round of the NFL draft by the Miami Dolphins. In Miami, the Dolphins have three backs with very redundant skill sets, and then you have Doaks. Doaks is a big physical back who brings a different element to the Miami offense, you know like Jordan Howard was supposed to do last season.

New England Patriots

  • Mac Jones (4 years, $3,896,588)

I love the landing spot for Mac Jones in New England. If there is an NFL franchise that resembles the Alabama Crimson Tide whom Mac Jones just won a National Championship with, it is the Patriots. I expect Jones to step in and shine as a teammate and a player who always does his job correctly. I could not imagine a better match for Bill Belichick post-Tom Brady.

  • Rhamondre Stevenson (4 years, $1,057,264)

As always, the New England backfield is an absolute fantasy mess! I will end up staying away from any Patriots running backs, but rebuilding owners may be able to find value somewhere in this backfield. If you buy Stevenson now and he ends up the starter halfway through the season you will be able to move Stevenson for much more than you paid to acquire him. Owners who get through a rebuild quick tend to hit on a few unknowns and sell them at peak value.

  • N’Keal Harry (2 years, $2,524,587)

Yes, Dynasty Owners, we are still talking about N’Keal Harry. Harry has been extremely disappointing during his tenure with the Patriots, but he is still young and can be had for cheap. If I am targeting Harry, I am doing it now before he is traded, or hits it off with Mac Jones and his value rises.

  • Jakobi Meyers (1 year, $588,333)

Jakobi Meyers was quietly one of the better receivers in the second half of 2020. Meyers managed to put up over 10.0 points in 7 of the last 11 games. If Meyers can come close, or exceed his back half of the 2020 season, he will be a massive value at his current salary. Any type of players producing at a cheap salary will make them extremely easy to trade, it will also raise their trade value.

New York Jets

  • Zach Wilson (4 years, $8,787,670)

I will admit I was a Zach Wilson hater heading into draft time and a lot of that had to do with me being upset Justin Fields was not getting the recognition he deserved during the draft process. Since Wilson arrived in the Big Apple, he has done nothing but impress everyone that has seen him play. If you can get Wilson cheap, he should be a decent option to start building your roster around.

  • Michael Carter (4 years, $1,071,842)

I have said all off-season that the New York Jets running back room is the most wide open and this has a lot to do with how I feel about Michael Carter. At UNC, Carter shared carries with Javonte Williams and would be looked at as more of a surefire pick had that not happened. In New York, Carter will be competing with Tevin Coleman and La’Mical Perine, not someone with the talent of Javonte Williams.

  • La’Mical Perine (3 years, $1,010,086)

If I am rebuilding, I am finding ways to get my hands on La’Mical Perine, simply because this backfield is wide open. I know I just said I believed in Michael Carter but this is the NFL where anything can happen. Perine will cost you next to nothing to acquire and if he ends up the starter at any point this season you need to reap the rewards by trading him.

  • Denzel Mims (3 years, $1,358,425)

In 2020, Denzel Mims had a very quiet year, but one thing stands out about him, and that is the fact that I feel like he was on the field more than any other receiver on the roster. I know a lot of owners have concerns with Mims struggling in year one, on top of a new coaching staff, but that is exactly when you should be looking to buy talent cheap.

  • Chris Herndon (1 year, $792,841)

I have Herndon as a Buy and I feel this rodeo is starting to become repetitive. Each of the past couple seasons most of us have hyped up Herndon because he flashed exciting potential during an impressive rookie season. While I am still buying Herndon be careful what you give up with a lot of reports on him being negative thus far.

Side note – right before editing this article, I saw news about Herndon practicing with the 2nd string offense. If this is true, Herndon becomes a Sell.

SELL

Buffalo Bills

  • Josh Allen (1 year, $5,295,760)

I know I may get some blowback from this choice, but I firmly believe it is the right way to go in a rebuild. In Dynasty Owner, I don’t know that there is a bigger value than Josh Allen for the 2021 season, but remember it is only for a year. If you are rebuilding and have Allen, I would look for the best couple rosters in your league and try to get as much future draft capital as possible from them in exchange for Josh Allen. If you can get multiple firsts and a stud player for Allen in a contract year, I would do it in a heartbeat. After thinking about it, this may be the fastest way to rebuild your roster.

  • Stefon Diggs (3 years, $14,400,000)

I have Stefon Diggs as a Sell here for one reason and one reason only, his age. If Diggs were 2-3 years younger, I would be all in on him regardless of salary but at 27 years of age he will likely be on the decline when you are ready to win a Championship. You should still get excellent value in return for Diggs regardless of his salary.

  • Cole Beasley (2 years, $7,250,000)

While I do love the toughness and consistency Cole Beasley brings to the NFL field, now is the time to cash in on him. Beasley had a career year in 2020 and seems to be up in the air over the vaccination rules the NFL has put in place. If I am a Beasley owner, I am trading him before the dude suddenly retires.

  • Emmanuel Sanders (1 year, $6,000,000)

I may have a bit of a biased take on Emmanuel Sanders, but at least I can admit when I am being biased. I have not decided if I flat out don’t like Sanders at his age, or if I just love Gabriel Davis that much. Regardless, I am selling Sanders for two Tide pods and a dryer sheet if someone offers.

Miami Dolphins

  • Myles Gaskin (2 years, $651,694)

The closest comparison we have to James Robinson is Myles Gaskin. Gaskin may as well be an undrafted free agent (7th round) who came out of nowhere last season to pass Jordan Howard and Matt Breida on the Dolphins’ depth chart. Gaskin had some issues with health last year but if he can correct that he will likely be the best value of all running backs in Dynasty Owner.

  • DeVante Parker (3 years, $7,625,000)

I like the talent of DeVante Parker and have always been a fan of his. In fantasy, we cannot let our hearts get in the way of our heads when it comes to deciding who to keep on our rosters, especially in a rebuild. At this point in Parker’s career, he is a Sell to a contending owner.

  • Will Fuller (1 year, $10,625,011)

I have never been a big believer in Will Fuller, and while it stung with the year he had last season, some will say it is because of the steroids. If Fuller staying healthy and a PED suspension are just coincidence then maybe I would consider him a Buy. Until then get rid of the guy.

  • Mike Gesicki (1 year, $1,652,981)

Heading into 2020 Mike Gesicki was one of my picks to be a breakout tight end. While he did not have a horrible year, it certainly was not a breakout year either. The Dolphins don’t seem to be sold on Gesicki either, after drafting Hunter Long in the 3rd round and I would recommend getting what you can for him now.

New England Patriots

  • Cam Newton (1 year, $5,100,000)

If you can find a believer in Cam Newton, you need to pull the trigger now. Every moment you let pass by is a moment closer to him becoming untradeable. The coaching staff in New England is used to having a pocket passer under center and while they no longer have Tom Brady, Mac Jones plays a similar style to what they have seen for close to the last two decades. If you have Newton just remember first round quarterbacks don’t ride the pine much anymore in the NFL.

  • Damien Harris (2 years, $907,784)

Do any of you remember a time when we could count on the Patriots backfield? I think we would have to go back to the Corey Dillon days to find a spot where we all felt somewhat comfortable with what we were getting from New England. Harris is one of the hot names this off-season and just cannot be trusted in this backfield. Sell Harris to the highest bidder and thank me when your team is winning a couple of years down the road.

  • James White (1 year, $2,462,500)

I am not too sure anyone is going to buy James White at this point in his career, but if you can get even a 3rd for him I would do it in a heartbeat. At 29 years old, he may still have some solid football left in the tank, but I am not taking any chances on running backs in red, white, and blue.

  • Sony Michel (2 years, $2,406,674)

I can spin Sony Michel as a Buy, Sell, or Hold, but decided he is someone owners should be selling. At the moment there is quite a bit of hype that Michel will get moved to take over the Akers roll. If you can capitalize on a rumor like that you should consider it a huge win.

  • Kendrick Bourne (3 years, $5,000,000)

I am not buying into either of the receiver additions for the Patriots this off-season. In 2020 with the 49ers, Bourne was nothing better than average finishing with less than 50 catches and 700 yards receiving. I am fully expecting Jakobi Meyers to be the go-to guy in New England this season, outside of the tight ends.

  • Nelson Agholor (2 years, $11,000,000)

I loved Nelson Agholor at times last season and recommended him to all of you as a solid bench player every week. At the end of the day, I hate the landing spot, at least until Mac Jones is starting. I was really hoping Agholor would have resigned in Las Vegas this past off-season, but the Patriots offered more than he could turn down. Agholor catching passes from Mac Jones is an intriguing match.

  • Jonnu Smith (4 years, $12,500,000)

As much as it seems I am hating on Steve Van Tassell’s Patriots, I promise I am not. I loved Jonnu Smith signing with New England…… for about 5 minutes. The second Hunter Henry signed; Smith became an instant Sell.

  • Hunter Henry (3 years, $12,500,000)

As much as I trust the Patriots decision making after the run they recently had, I am still scratching my head over the fact they are paying two tight ends $12,500,000 per season. I cannot imagine a scenario where these guys don’t virtually cancel out each other’s upside. Sell before you must cut!

New York Jets

  • Corey Davis (3 years, $12,500,000)

I always love the small school kids coming out of college, especially when they are highly rated like Corey Davis was. The first few years of Davis’s career he disappointed in a big way. In 2020, Davis finally had his breakout year after multiple frustrating years, much like DeVante Parker. If Davis did not get a big contract with a rookie quarterback, he may have been a Buy, but instead it is time get the draft capital for trading him.

  • Jamison Crowder (1 year, $9,500,000)

Over the past few seasons with Sam Darnold, Jamison Crowder has been nothing short of a target monster. Fast forward to 2021, Darnold is gone, Crowder was forced to take less money, and Gang Green has a new coaching staff. Overall, none of this is welcome news for Crowder. Oh yea, rookie Elijah Moore has done nothing but impress in camp.

  • Keelan Cole (1 year, $5,500,000)

As I do for Corey Davis, I hate the landing spot for Keelan Cole. Cole quietly had a solid year in 2020 for the lowly Jaguars and I was hoping for a solid landing spot for him this off-season. I am not sure where Cole goes from here, but I am not counting on a great season in New York. If you can find a willing trade partner, get as far away from Cole in the Jets crowded receiving room as possible.

HOLD

Buffalo Bills

  • Mitchell Trubisky (1 year, $2,500,000)

I am sure many of you hear Mitchell Trubisky and just giggle. I am here to tell you that Chicago was not all Trubisky’s fault and that I believe he could be a long-term starter in the right system. All of that said it has nothing to do with why I want you to hold Trubisky. I am holding him because Josh Allen likes to run and running quarterbacks tend to get hurt more often than non- running quarterbacks. If Trubisky steps in for an injured Josh Allen, you may net a future 1st depending on which owner just lost Josh Allen.

  • Zack Moss (3 years, $1,153,079)

I am a believer in both “starting” running backs in the Bills offense. I know both guys struggled in 2020 for whatever reason but they can likely only go up from here. Hold, and one of those two backs will emerge as a starter and whichever it is should net great return in a future trade.

  • Devin Singletary (2 years, $974,500)

Is there an echo in the room? There will be if I write about Devin Singletary. Whatever was said about Zack Moss is the same that needs to be said about Singletary.

  • Dawson Knox (2 years, $880,400)

Personally, I think it is time to give up hope on Dawson Knox becoming a quality fantasy tight end. I know this seems harsh after just two years, but the eye test tells me he just does not have it. In 2020, I was expecting Knox to take a big leap forward, yet he got worse while the entire offense around him got significantly better. If you have Knox you should be looking to trade him to one of his truthers.

Miami Dolphins

  • Jacoby Brissett (1 year, $5,000,000)

We are all aware of Tua Tagoviailoa’s struggles in year one. In 2020, Ryan Fitzpatrick was clearly the better option for the Dolphins and there is a real possibility we see something like this happen again in 2021. If you are rebuilding, Brissett is a valuable player to grab and stash. As I have said with other backups, Brissett will be a gold mine if he becomes the starter.

  • Malcom Brown (1 year, $1,750,000)

I don’t know you will be able to get anything out of him with the consensus being so low on Malcom Brown right now, but it is worth a shot to hold onto him. If Gaskin happens to struggle or go down with injury, we could see any of these Miami running backs take over.

New England Patriots

  • None

New York Jets

  • Tevin Coleman (1 year, $1,100,000)

Do we really need to talk about Tevin Coleman? I honestly cannot believe there is even a tiny amount of chatter that Coleman could lead the Jets backfield in touches. If you can find someone crazy enough to trade for Coleman, do it and never look back.

Conclusion

The AFC players have now officially been placed into Buy, Sell, and Hold categories for all of you rebuilding owners out there. It is now up to you to decide what to do with that information. Here at Dynasty Owner, there will be start up drafts going on constantly until the season starts, be sure to get into a league today if you are interested.

If you are looking for other articles to enhance your Dynasty Owner skills, be sure to check out Steve Van Tassell, and Matt “The Jerk’s” articles and videos every Monday and Wednesday. If you guys have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to get ahold of me on Twitter. As always good luck on your 2021 Chase for the Ring!

Dynasty Owner WR Tiers – Part One (The Starters)

By Steven Van Tassell

It’s time for the final set of Dynasty Owner Fantasy Football Tiers 2021. At least that was the plan. Because there are so many wide receivers, after much work and deliberation, it was decided that we really need two weeks to cover all of them.

First, we’ll tier and rank the 53 WRs projected to score 200.0 or more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. These will be referred to as the Starting WRs. Including that many WRs will give us all of the Starters since every Dynasty Owner team needs to have two Starting WRs. There is also the FLEX position in the Starting lineup, so a minimum of 24 WRs, up to 36 WRs, will be in getting the full complement of Dynasty Owner fantasy points every single week.

These WR tiers were the most difficult to put together because of the sheer volume of players to rank and place in tiers. The range of salaries for just these 53 WRs, from under $1 million annually up to $27.25 million, means there is a wide range of Dynasty Dollars per Point (DD/PT) values. These Starter WR tiers aren’t perfect by any measure, and many Dynasty Owners might have a difference of opinion on some player placements. There were several instances where a player could have had his own tier (as Darren Waller and Kyle Pitts did in the TE tiers), but with so many players to include, it was difficult to justify a tier with one WR, so those players were folded into a nearby tier. There was nobody among the WRs who stood out on their own as much as Waller did because of the much lower salary he carries compared to the other elite TEs. Same with Pitts as there are a few rookie WRs drafted highly in the 2021 NFL draft, so several players fit together.

Ranking the tiers proved to be challenging as well. There are nine elite WRs who are all projected to score 300.0 or more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. After that, there is a gap, but 21 more WRs are projected for between 240.0 and 280.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021, followed by 23 WRs expected to score between 200.0 and 240.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. When you factor in salaries and contract years, it makes for a lot of tiers and for interesting debates on where to rank each tier. For example, it is better to have a WR who is going to score around 250.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points, but will cost around only a couple of a million dollars in salary for a couple of years, or is it worth $12 million to $15 million or more in salary to get an additional 50.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. That’s around 3.0 points per game, on average. However, WR seems the most likely position outside of QB to spend your salary cap on, so why not use it and get those extra points?  It’s a good debate because while value is at a premium in Dynasty Owner, in the end, you still need to score enough points to win your weekly matchup. The value versus extra points is something that I went back and forth on many times while ranking the Starting WR tiers.

All 2021 projections come from Rotowire and are based on the Standard Dynasty Owner scoring system as outlined in the updated Dynasty Owner Constitution. Standard Dynasty Owner scoring gives you .1 points for every yard rushing or receiving, .1 point for every 2 yards passing, 1 point per reception, 6 points for a rushing, receiving or passing touchdown and 2 points for a successful 2-point conversion (rushing, receiving, or passing). Interceptions or fumbles lost cost you 3 points, while a fumble that is recovered by the player’s team is a loss of only 1 point. Bonus points are available for 100-199 yards rushing (2 points), 200 yards rushing or receiving (6 points), 300-399 yards passing (1 point) and 400 yards passing (4 points). There is also a 3 point bonus for clutch scoring, which is a score that results in a lead change in the final two minutes of the 4th quarter or overtime. Kickoff and punt return touchdowns are worth 6 points for the player and kickoff and punt returns are worth 1 point for every 40 yards.

All 2021 Dynasty Owner fantasy points projections were accurate as of the morning of July 28th.

Fourteen Tiers of Starting WRs

As stated in all of the other tiers articles, Dynasty Owner tiers are not the same as tiers for other fantasy football leagues or on other fantasy football websites. There are multiple factors to consider in Dynasty Owner including current salary, future salaries, 2021 projected stats and long-term potential. Dynasty Owners also need to have two Starting WRs and two Bench WRs every week. There is also a FLEX position in your Dynasty Owner Starting lineup that can be filled by a WR. As a result, more WRs will be used by Dynasty Owners on a weekly basis than in most fantasy leagues. That’s why we have more WR tiers, and more players listed than in other tiers articles.

With 60% of offensive formations in 2020 utilizing 3 WRs plus a RB and a TE according to Sharp Football Stats (https://www.sharpfootballstats.com/personnel-grouping-frequency.html), it’s important for Dynasty Owners to have a lot of quality WRs on their roster. An additional 5% of formations used either three WRs with two TEs or two RBs, 4 WRs or even 5 WRs. That’s nearly two-thirds of formations with at least three WRs on the field at once.

Because of that utilization, there are at least three WRs on pretty much every team who is worthy of having on your Dynasty Owner roster. With so many WRs to place into tiers, it was necessary to break them up into two sets – Starters and Bench. The Starter tiers are listed below and there are 14 of them that capture all 53 WRs projected to score at least 200.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. In order, they are:

  • Tier 1a – Elite Cheap WRs
  • Tier 1b – Almost Elite Cheap WRs
  • Tier 2a – Elite, Slightly More Expensive WRs
  • Tier 2b – Almost Elite, Slightly More Expensive WRs
  • Tier 3a – Elite and Expensive WRs with Long-Term Contracts
  • Tier 3b – Elite/High-End and Expensive WRs on One-Year Contracts
  • Tier 4 – Great Value Second Year WRs
  • Tier 5 – Rookie, Early First Round Draft Pick WRs
  • Tier 6 – Great Value Young WRs with One-Year Left on Contract
  • Tier 7 – High End, $16 Million WRs with Multi-Year Contracts
  • Tier 8 – High End, Very Expensive WRs with Long-Term Contracts
  • Tier 9 – Low-End, $3 Million Starting WRs
  • Tier 10 – Very Good Production, Mid-Range Salary WRs on One Year Contracts
  • Tier 11 – Multi-Year, Mid-Range Salary Potential Starters

Tier 1a – Elite Cheap WRs

There are nine WRs who are projected to score 300.0 or more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. Out of those nine, three of them have been in the league for two years, are 25 years of age or younger, scored 180.0 or more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in their rookie season and then scored more in their second year and make less than $1.5 million in salary. In order from lowest (aka Best) Dynasty Dollars per Point (DD/PT) to highest, they are:

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Terry McLaurin, WAS$961,9182305.0$3,154
DK Metcalf, SEA$1,146,5132305.5$3,753
A.J. Brown, TEN$1,413,0922305.0$4,633

As you can see, all three of them have two years left on their contracts and are projected to have 2021 DD/PT values of less than $5,000. They are projected to score an almost identical number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and should be the first three WRs off the board in Dynasty Owner drafts.

Tier 1b – Almost Elite Cheap WRs

The next two players have very similar profiles as the Elite Cheap WRs in Tier 1a. However, they are projected to score around 40 to 50 fewer Dynasty Owner fantasy points than Brown, McLaurin and Metcalf. That sets them apart as just a step below and “almost” elite.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Diontae Johnson, PIT$1,070,2412262.3$4,080
Deebo Samuel, SF$1,811,8692252.6$7,173

In addition, both Johnson and Samuel have competition from another cheap second year WR on their roster. Those second year players will take away enough receptions, yards and TDs from these WRs to keep them from being in Tier 1a.

Tier 2a – Elite, Slightly More Expensive WRs

Here are two additional elite WRs projected to score 300.0 or more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021, but who make slightly more than the Tier 1a Elite WRs. As a result, their 2021 projected DD/PT values are higher which puts them a tier below.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Calvin Ridley, ATL$2,725,1782305.6$8,917
Justin Jefferson, MIN$3,280,7013305.4$10,742

In terms of ADP, both of them are being selected earlier than the WRs in Tier 1a (except DK Metcalf), so Dynasty Owners don’t appear to be worried about the extra salary they need to pay Ridley and Jefferson. However, in terms of categorizing the Elite WRs, they are a small step lower due to those slightly higher salaries.

Tier 2b – Almost Elite, Slightly More Expensive WRs

In the same spirit as Tier 1a and Tier 1b, we have Tier 2b. All four of these WRs are projected to score a similar number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points as Diontae Johnson and Deebo Samuel, but will cost more in salary and have higher DD/PT values.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
D.J. Moore, CAR$2,792,8292266.4$10,484
Brandon Aiyuk, SF$3,132,8353252.3$12,417
CeeDee Lamb, DAL$3,502,5033266.2$13,157
Jerry Jeudy, DEN$3,798,2433238.7$15,912

All of them have the potential to move into the elite level tier. However, none have reached that point yet in their career or are projected to do so in 2021. Admittedly, Aiyuk, Lamb and Jeudy are only in their second year, but each is still projected to score more than 40.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points than they did as a rookie in 2020. Justin Jefferson scored more than all three of these rookies in 2020 and is projected to do so again in 2021, which is why he is ahead of them in Tier 2a. Jeudy seems to be an outlier in this tier with the highest salary and lowest projected points for 2021, but it was the best placement for him.

Tier 3a – Elite and Expensive WRs with Long-Term Contracts

There is a stark difference in salary among the nine WRs who are projected to score more than 300.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. The gap between the fifth most expensive elite WR (Justin Jefferson at $3.28 million) and the sixth most expensive elite WR is over $11 million per year plus these two elite WRs in their own tier.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Stefon Diggs, BUF$14,400,0003305.7$47,105
Tyreek Hill, KC$18,000,0002328.3$54,828

Stefon Diggs is the sixth most expensive elite WR and his annual salary is $14.4 million, while Tyreek Hill is eighth at $18 million. There is no age difference as both are 27 years old, have multiple years left on their contracts and each one is the unquestioned WR1 on their NFL team.

Tier 3b – Elite/High-End and Expensive WRs on One-Year Contracts

We have our final elite WR appearing here, as well as two other WRs who are high-end WR and playing in 2021 as “franchise” players with the one-year franchise tag designation and salary.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Davante Adams, GB$14,500,0001330.2$43,913
Chris Godwin, TB$15,983,0001263.5$60,657
Allen Robinson, CHI$17,880,0001278.7$64,155

While Davante Adams would appear to fit better in Tier 3a based on his 2021 projected points and value, the fact that he has only one year left on his contract, compared to two years for both Hill and Diggs, drops him down slightly. Since both Allen Robinson and Chris Godwin also have one-year contracts, although with slightly higher salaries, and fewer projected Dynasty Owner fantasy points, they appear here as well. All of them have the potential to have a great year in 2021 and get a contract in free agency that will have them making $20 million or more per season for multiple years. The potential of a bigger deal in 2022 and beyond puts all of them slightly below Hill and Diggs and their already known 2022 salaries.

Tier 4 – Great Value Second Year WRs

The second round of the 2020 NFL draft was a great place for NFL teams to find WRs. Seven WRs were drafted in that round and four of them appear in this list. The other three will be included in Part 2 as they are more likely Bench options at this point in their short NFL career.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Chase Claypool, PIT$1,654,1563250.2$6,611
Tee Higgins, CIN$2,171,6963250.1$8,683
Laviska Shenault, JAC$1,924,0173212.5$9,054
Michael Pittman, IND$2,153,2123210.8$10,214

Chase Claypool and Tee Higgins are projected to be the players in this tier with the most Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021. They scored the most points in 2020 as well. Each has to contend with two other high-quality WRs for receptions, so both are slotted here instead of in an earlier tier.

Tier 5 – Rookie, Early First Round Draft Pick WRs

As early first round draft picks, each of these WRs is expected to jump into the elite tier in the next year or two. For now, they reside here as their salaries are higher than the young elite WRs. Because of those salaries, it’s impossible for them to produce the same value as those inexpensive elite WRs, but if they produce in 2021 as expected and improve in the future, their Dynasty Owners won’t mind.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
DeVonta Smith, PHI$5,035,3484234.1$21,509
Ja’Marr Chase, CIN$7,547,4104240.0$31,448
Jaylen Waddle, MIA$6,771,4984204.8$33,064

This tier is limited to just the three WRs drafted in the Top 10 of the 2021 NFL draft. Look for the two late round first round picks in next week’s article along with plenty of other rookies.

Tier 6 – Great Value Young WRs with One-Year Left on Contract

None of these guys have reached the elite level yet and none are projected to rank in the Top 24 WRs in 2021 scoring, but several are pretty close. Therefore, none is an automatic Starting WR for your Dynasty Owner team. However, they are likely starting in the FLEX position. All of them are young (25 or younger), on their rookie contract and will likely be getting paid a lot more money in 2022 and beyond.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Tre’Quan Smith, NO$855,1311210.2$4,068
Michael Gallup, DAL$880,9951215.3$4,092
D.J. Chark, JAC$1,111,8071250.2$4,444
Courtland Sutton, DEN$1,710,4801234.3$7,300

Another interesting point about all four of these players. All of them are projected to have more Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 than they have in any previous season. A few are very close, but all of them are projected for more, so this value is really their peak in Dynasty Owner. Tre’Quan Smith has moved up to the top of this tier when ranked by 2021 DD/PT after the Michael Thomas injury news. He was below D.J. Chark up until then. 

Tier 7 – High End, $16 Million WRs with Multi-Year Contracts

The title of this tier is a bit off as not all of these WRs make $16 million per year. In fact, none of them make exactly that much, unlike the three player, $6.013 million TE tier in last week’s article (https://dynastyowner.com/2021/07/dynasty-owner-te-tiers/). Instead, all six WRs in this tier make between $15.1 million and $16.5 million and have at least two years left on their contracts.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Cooper Kupp, LA$15,750,0003268.8$58,594
Robert Woods, LA$16,250,0005263.1$61,764
Mike Evans, TB$16,500,0003266.0$62,030
Adam Thielen, MIN$16,050,0004258.6$62,065
Jarvis Landry, CLE$15,100,0002231.0$65,368
Brandin Cooks, HOU$16,200,0002228.1$71,021

All of them are between 27 and 30 years of age, so they are veterans who have been around the NFL for a few years, but aren’t “too old” quite yet. Jarvis Landry and Brandin Cooks have the lowest projected 2021 points, but also have only two years left on their contracts, while the others have three or more. Robert Woods is the only one of the group with five years left on his contract.

Tier 8 – High End, Very Expensive WRs with Long-Term Contracts

Dynasty Owners pretty much know what they are going to get with these players. They cost a lot of salary ($18 million or more) because they have all been a true WR1 in the past and, if healthy, will produce plenty of Dynasty Owner fantasy points. However, all of them are signed to long-term contracts that make them prohibitively expensive to own.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Kenny Golladay, NYG$18,000,0004245.4$73,350
Keenan Allen, LAC$20,025,0004272.7$73,432
Odell Beckham, CLE$18,000,0003238.8$75,377
Amari Cooper, DAL$20,000,0004261.6$76,453
Julio Jones, TEN$22,000,0003254.4$86,478
DeAndre Hopkins, ARI$27,250,0004305.6$89,169
Michael Thomas, NO$19,250,0004214.9$89,577

The age range for these seven players is between 27 and 29 years old, except Jones who is 32. Only one (DeAndre Hopkins) is expected to produce at an elite level in 2021 with over 300.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. However, he is also the most expensive WR by far as his annual salary is $5.25 million more than Julio Jones who ranks second. The recent news about Michael Thomas has reduced his projections to make him the worst value with the fewest projected points for 2021. Before this news, Thomas’ value was more in line with the other WRs in this tier in the $18 – $20 million salary range.

Tier 9 – Low-End, $3 Million Starting WRs

Other than sharing the same last name and making in the $3 million salary range for 2021, there’s not a lot of similarities between the two players in this tier.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Antonio Brown, TB$3,075,0001227.4$13,522
Marquise Brown, BAL$2,946,8352210.8$13,979

Antonio is 33 years old, while Marquise is only 24. Antonio has played for several NFL teams, while Marquise has only been with the Ravens. Antonio is on a one-year deal after re-signing with the Buccaneers, while Marquise still has two years left on his rookie contract. However, what they both do have in common is being on the very low-end of consideration for inclusion in your projected Dynasty Owner Starting lineup.

Tier 10 – Very Good Production, Mid-Range Salary WRs on One Year Contracts

If you have about $10 million in salary and need a starter in your FLEX spot but don’t want to draft someone with a multi-year contract, here’s a list of WRs who will fit that spot pretty nicely.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
JuJu Smith-Schuster, PIT$8,000,0001231.8$34,513
Tyler Lockett, SEA$10,250,0001251.5$40,755
Robby Anderson, CAR$10,000,0001247.4$40,420
Will Fuller, MIA$10,625,0111205.2$51,779
Mike Williams, LAC$15,680,0001232.4$67,470

Mike Williams is the most expensive WR here and well over the $10 million salary figure, but he didn’t really fit in the other tier with WRs with similar salaries and years left on their contract (Tier 3b) because of lower production than Davante Adams, Allen Robinson and Chris Godwin. There’s a reason why the Chargers exercised his fifth year option, but didn’t sign him to a long-term extension.

While Tyler Lockett is included here, we do know his salary for the next four years. It’s $17.25 million per year for the next four years and the information is listed under Contract on his player profile page. However, since Dynasty Owners will be able to drop him without penalty after that contract kicks in next year, he’s listed here with the guys who don’t have a contract for 2022.

Tier 11 – Multi-Year, Mid-Range Salary Potential Starters

These guys are considered “potential” starters. They might move into your Starting lineup if they have a good matchup, or if your Starter has a poor matchup, or if someone is injured or on bye. All of them have multi-year contracts, so you have the stability of knowing their salary for the next two to three years.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Marvin Jones, JAC$6,250,0002204.8$30,518
DeVante Parker, MIA$7,625,0003208.4$36,588
Curtis Samuel, WAS$11,500,0003237.8$48,360
Tyler Boyd, CIN$10,750,0003217.3$49,471
Nelson Agholor, NE$11,000,0002208.8$52,682
Corey Davis, NYJ$12,500,0003203.9$61,305

Three of the biggest off-season free agent WR signees are here (Curtis Samuel, Nelson Agholor and Corey Davis). While they are listed as “potential” starters, Curtis Samuel is projected as the WR33, so he might be in the FLEX position on a weekly basis. The NFL teams for each of these WRs are paying a lot for their services, so each should have the opportunities to score their projected point totals at the minimum and maybe exceed it.

Conclusion

There are so many WRs listed already, but believe it or not, since we only did 53. That’s less than 10% of the 566 WRs listed in the Dynasty Owner database. We started with the cream of the crop, but that doesn’t mean these are the only WRs who will work their way into your Starting lineup. An injury to Michael Thomas added Tre’Quan Smith to the ranks, while others will move up during training camp or during the season as injuries to other players mount or they play better than expected.

As stated at the beginning of this article, I’m sure there will be differences of opinion on these Starting WR tiers. Let me know what you think of these Starting WR tiers (or any of the other tiers) on Twitter (@SteveVT33) or in the comments section on YouTube.

Next week, we’ll look at even more WRs as there are many more players who could earn a spot on your Dynasty Owner Bench. There are over 60 WRs projected to score between 100.0 and 200.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points, not to mention some projected to score fewer than that but with rock bottom salaries. Those rock bottom salaries make them tempting to have on your roster and stash away on your Practice Squad for the future, or in case they break out this year.

In addition to tiers, Dynasty Owner has plenty of other great content to help you draft your dynasty. We can also provide guidance as you continue to tweak your roster after your rookie or start-up draft is over so you can win your league. My articles and videos to get you ready for your 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up league team are being released on Wednesdays. Keep an eye out for new articles from the rest of our team of Dynasty Owner writers as well. Matt Morrison – The Jerk (@Dynastyjerk) is doing a deep dive on individual teams that you can check out on Mondays, while Jay Pounds (@jaypoundsnfl) looks at how to rebuild your Dynasty Owner roster on Fridays. All of the articles will be released at 1 PM (Eastern) with videos and podcast released at 3 PM (Eastern).

Please read all of their articles and follow all three of us plus Dynasty Owner (@Dynasty_Owner) on Twitter. Hopefully this article is helpful for everyone who has a 2021 start-up draft coming soon, and at least interesting for those of you who have already drafted or have an established team. Maybe it’ll give you and other Dynasty Owners some ideas for potential trades too. Thanks, and have a great day!

Steven Van Tassell is the Head of Content for Dynasty Owner

Follow us on Twitter: @SteveVT33 and @Dynasty_Owner

Green Bay Packers Contract Breakdown

Hello Dynasty Owners and welcome.  Today I am going to wrap up the NFC North as I talk about the final team from the division, The Green Bay Packers.  My goal was to leave the Packers until the end of the division in order to allow more time for Aaron Rodgers news to become clearer.  Well, as I expected, nothing much has changed in the past three weeks.  If anything, it seems like there is more uncertainty than ever.  So where does the drama stem from?  I suppose no one knows the exact reasons Rodgers is disgruntled with the Packers’ leadership, but I think it’s safe to assume that it revolves around a couple of key issues.

First is the fact that the Packers have not won a Super Bowl since SB XLV (2010 season).  Not only have they not won a Super Bowl in that time period, they haven’t been back to the Super Bowl since 2010 either.  This is clearly disappointing given the talent the team has had over the past decade (including Rodgers).

Second, is the fact that the Packers have not drafted a wide receiver or running back in the first round of the NFL Draft since 2002.  The last player was Javon Walker (WR) in 2002, and he was drafted three years before Rodgers.  That’s right, since Aaron Rodgers has been a Green Bay Packer, they have taken zero running backs or wide receivers in the first round.  In addition, there have only been five wide receivers taken in the second round since Aaron Rodgers was drafted in 2005.  They are Terrence Murphy (2005), Greg Jennings (2006), Jordy Nelson (2008), Randall Cobb (2011) and Davante Adams (2014).  Every other wide receiver that played for the Packers was either a lower pick or was not acquired through the draft.  The Packers are notorious (especially in the last ten years) for not investing in early offensive weapons, especially pass catchers.

Finally, and most importantly, the Packers selected Rodgers’ replacement (Jordan Love) in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.  Now, I’m not going to bad mouth this pick as much as many analysts have, but it did seem odd given the fact that Green Bay was one game away from reaching the Super Bowl the year prior.  It seemed, in my amateur opinion, that the Packers organization was taking what they had for granted a little more than they should have.  Regardless, Love was drafted with the 26th overall pick.  The Packers traded up for Love, and it has been stated that Rodgers was unaware Love was going to be drafted.  There have been rumblings and rumors of other issues within the organization, but these are the main issues that I have noticed.

So, what happens next?  The answer is…only Rodgers knows, and that may be an incorrect statement in itself.  Maybe he hasn’t made up his mind, but I see only two likely outcomes.  First, Rodgers plays, and he plays damn well like he always has.  The second option is that he sits out for a portion or all of the 2021 season.  I see this being less likely as this situation will get ugly and expensive for both parties.  The third option is that he is traded, but I think that has a very low chance of happening.  Packers GM Brian Gutekunst has stated that Rodgers will not be traded.  In the end, I don’t have much for you other than speculation.  Rodgers ($33,500,000) is owned in 71 percent of Dynasty Owner leagues as some people have already cut ties with the 2020 NFL MVP.

Free Agents

There were four notable free agents that the Green Bay Packers had at the end of the 2020 season.  All have signed with their respective teams for the upcoming season and only one of them will not be playing for the Packers.  That player is Jamaal Williams…

Williams joins the rival Detroit Lions.  He leaves behind 119 carries and 31 receptions.  Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillion will look to pick up the extra opportunities.

Allen Lazard was issued a tender by the Green Bay Packers so he will remain with the team for at least one more season.  Lazard was an exclusive-rights free agent which means that he had less than three accrued seasons in the NFL.  Given that fact, he had virtually zero leverage as he is unable to negotiate a contract with another team.  The tender was issued to Lazard, at the league minimum ($675,000), and he had almost no say in the matter.  Lazard will once again be a cheap wide receiver stash with the possibility of becoming the number two wide receiver in Green Bay.

Robert Tonyan was a restricted free agent which means he had a little more leverage than Lazard.  In Tonyan’s case, he was issued a second round tender by the Packers, but he was then also able to go out and negotiate with other teams if he chose to do so.  In the end, Tonyan signed the second round tender and will make $3,384,000 for one year.  Tonyan will be a sneaky pick in startup drafts this year.  His low salary and low ADP make him one of the tight ends I would target later in a draft.

Finally, we have the twelve million dollar man, Aaron Jones.  Jones finished as Dynasty Owner’s RB5 despite missing two games due to injury.  The pay increase that he just received will tank his overall Dynasty Owner value, but I would feel pretty confident if I did end up drafting him.  If you are able to save money elsewhere in the draft, he will be a solid RB1 for the 2021 season.

Contract Breakdown

Similar to last week, today I am only going to break down a single player.  His name is Robert Tonyan.  Tonyan broke out last season as a nearly unknown player.  He came into the 2020 season as the suspected number one tight end for Green Bay, but he was still barely owned in any league, even Dynasty Owner.  It took a couple of weeks for people to start taking notice of Tonyan, but after five touchdowns in the first four games, he couldn’t be ignored anymore.  In the end, he finished as TE5 with 52 receptions, 586 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns.  The touchdowns are really what catapulted him above fellow tight ends like Mark Andrews, Noah Fant and Mike Gesicki.  He actually tied Travis Kelce for the most touchdowns by a tight end last season.  That TE5 finish is a little deceiving due to the fact that Tonyan (TE5) produced 138.2 points less than Kelce (TE1).  Tonyan also produced over 100 points less than Darren Waller (TE2).  The point I’m trying to make (and that I’ve made before) is that after the top tier tight ends, point differences between players become more negligible.  Let me give you an example…

Here is the 2020 TE5 through TE10…

FinishPlayerCurrent SalaryRecYardsTDsFantasy Points
TE5R. Tonyan$3,384,0005258611176.6
TE6M. Andrews$863,290587017168.1
TE7M. Gesicki$1,652,981537036159.3
TE8N. Fant$3,147,680626733149.3
TE9H. Hurst$2,759,007565716149.1
TE10D. Schultz$728,090636154148.5

The first thing I notice is how small of a range these tight ends have for receptions and receiving yards.  The second thing I notice is how small of a range these tight ends have for fantasy points.  As I mentioned earlier, the difference between TE1 and TE5 was 138.2 fantasy points.  The difference between TE5 and TE10 is 28.1 fantasy points.  The reality of this statistic is that it looks worse the further down you travel.  The difference between TE5 and TE20 is only 60.2 points.  Now, I’m not saying that these points aren’t appreciated or valuable because they are.  What I’m saying is that if you can for sure draft the TE5 for the 2021 season, you may not be returning much draft equity value based on how late you can draft the TE20.

At any rate, let’s return to Tonyan.  He is predicted to finish as TE18 in Dynasty Owner for the 2021 season.  If he does produce at this level he will not be able to be relied on as a starting tight end.  I would be more than happy to have him as my bench tight end, but he would have to keep up his 2020 touchdown rate to become a starter on my team.  He should be owned in every DO league (and at his moment he is), but you are going to need a better tight end on your roster if you want to win the tight end position week after week.

This brings me to another overarching theme that I thought about while writing this article.  It is going to be almost impossible for someone to win the Chase for the Ring without one of the top three tight ends at the end of the season.

(If you don’t know what the Chase for the Ring is, check out dynastyowner.com for more info.  Additionally, I am going to be doing a spotlight on Chase for the Ring in my article next week.  Be sure to check out that article and video breakdown for more info.)

Last year, the two players were Kelce and Waller.  Without either of them, I don’t really see a feasible route to The Ring.  In 2021, I see that including three players.  I don’t think anyone can win the ring without Kelce, Waller or Kittle.  There is always a chance that a player like Kyle Pitts or T.J. Hockenson jumps up into that conversation, but unfortunately I think that’s the end of the list.  This is just something to keep in mind as you make trades and/or get into start up drafts.

I want to thank everyone for reading and for watching my video breakdowns on YouTube.  Message me on Twitter (@dynastyjerk) and let me know if you have any questions or concerns.  I would appreciate it if you followed @Dynasty_Owner on Twitter as well as subscribed to Dynasty Owner on YouTube.  Thank you all.  Take care and be safe.

TheJerk

Buy, Sell, Hold: AFC South Stock Watch Edition

By Jay Pounds: (@JayPoundsNFL)

48 days until the season is finally here, yes, I will be the unofficial countdown man from here on out. Before saying this, I want to first wish Cam Akers a speedy recovery and I hope he can get back to the field soon. I know many Dynasty Owners are crushed by the Akers injury, but as we do with anything in life, we must move on and find a way around it. If you want to learn different ways or thoughts around things like the Akers situation, Dynasty Owner is starting to ramp back up with the Dynasty Owner livestream officially returning every Wednesday at 2 pm. If you missed this week’s livestream you are already behind…. I am kidding of course but if you want to stay up to date with everything, you will want to be around for most of the livestreams.

As you may already know we will be going over another AFC division this week with it being the AFC South’s turn to be in the spotlight. I will do this just as I have the last few weeks with each player being set into different categories named Buy, Sell, or Hold. The players in the buy category are players you can feel comfortable going out and acquiring for your team, these players tend to be young, cheap, and often unproven. The players in the hold category are players I do not suggest going out and getting, but if you already have them on your roster I would not move off them until their value is higher. All players in the sell category are players I would move on from if rostered and I would not recommend going out and trading for them. In case you may have forgotten these players will be thought of as if I were a rebuilding owner. As always if you have any comments, questions, or concerns feel free to contact me on Twitter.

BUY

Titans

  • A.J. Brown (2 years, $1,413,092)

If you can somehow buy A.J. Brown cheap I highly recommend doing so. Brown is one of the league’s premier young receivers and should be someone who produces for your team for many years to come. The addition of Julio Jones may hurt Brown some, but I am still expecting him to ball out in 2021. The only concern I have with Brown is that he is due a contract extension in two years, and it may come earlier than that. If you go out and acquire Brown make sure you plan to have cap space to keep him long term.

  • Josh Reynolds (1 year, $1,750,000)

I have Josh Reynolds as a buy for two reasons, the first being that Julio cannot play forever and the second being that Julio was banged up the majority of last season. If Julio, or A.J. Brown were to go down, Reynolds should be the next man up. Even in this scenario I would not expect much out of Reynolds as the offense would just call Derrick Henry’s number more frequently, but it could be a great steppingstone if Reynolds were to step in and perform.

  • Dez Fitzpatrick (4 years, $1,069,951)

As I do with Reynolds, I have Fitzpatrick as a buy. Anytime you are a rebuilding owner it is a great idea to hoard young talented players. While I am not extremely high on Fitzpatrick, he is in a very good, efficient offense and should be someone rebuilding owners consider. If Fitzpatrick ends up beating out Reynolds, he will get a chance to produce in the regular season.

  • Darrynton Evans (3 years, $1,140,447)

I am not positive Darrynton Evans is locked into a backup role in Tennessee, but he is by far my favorite to win the job. While I feel the Titans would turn into a pass-first team with a committee approach at the running back spot if Derrick Henry were to go down, I think Evans would see the most work in the committee. As a rebuilding owner, you can never have enough of these guys who just need a break to see big snap shares.

Texans

  • Davis Mills (4 years, $1,304,383)

I firmly believe Watson will never take another snap with the Texans’ organization. If my prediction comes true, then it is going to be up to Davis Mills or Tyrod Taylor to start during the 2021 season in Houston. If you have Mills and he winds up the starter you will be sitting on a massive trade chip if he plays well. Shots like this can end a rebuild very quickly.

  • Tyrod Taylor (1 year, $5,500,000)

As I mentioned earlier with Davis Mills, the Texans quarterback position should be wide open. I may be wrong on the Watson situation, but for such a small price tag I would take a shot 10 out of 10 times.

  • Phillip Lindsay (1 year, $3,250,000)

In 2020 Phillip Lindsay held his own after the Broncos picked up Melvin Gordon in free agency, and I expect more of the same from Lindsay in Houston. I am buying Lindsay simply because I do not see Mark Ingram, or David Johnson making it past the upcoming season with the organization. It is a very possible scenario that we see Lindsay as the lead back over the next two seasons with the Texans. Injuries do concern me but the price tag on Lindsay is extremely low right now.

  • Nico Collins (4 years, $1,217,879)

Nico Collins has been about the only source of good news coming out of the Texans’ organization this off-season. Everything I have read on Collins has been nothing short of glowing reports and people gushing over his potential. I am buying Collins but be aware of the asking price right now. We all remember Bryan Edwards last season.

  • Brevin Jordan (4 years, $958,046)

I was extremely shocked when Brevin Jordan was not selected until the 5th round of the NFL draft. I am not sure why he was passed over so many times, but he is a phenomenal talent and well worth taking a shot on. At this point there are roughly two and a half people high on Jordan, meaning he will not cost anything more than a 3rd round pick to acquire. If you are buying him make sure you plan to be patient with players at the tight end position usually taking multiple years to fully learn.

Jaguars

  • Trevor Lawrence (4 years, $9,198,372)

I think buying Trevor Lawrence is the most obvious choice in the division. Lawrence is a generational talent and fits well on any rebuilding roster. On the flip side, if your team is in dire need of assets, he may be worth trading him to help restock the shelves.

  • Gardner Minshew (2 years, $677,721)

I am buying Minshew anywhere I can and bought him recently for $2 million Dynasty Dollars. Any time you have a proven player behind a rookie you buy him plain and simple. I know Minshew is playing behind a generational talent in Lawrence, but Lawrence is still a rookie. I also see Jimmy Garoppolo and Minshew as the top trade targets if a starter were to go down.

  • Travis Etienne (4 years, $3,224,526)

Could Etienne be the secret winner after the Akers news? Judging by Twitter’s reaction a lot of people seem to think this will be reality. If the Jags do move Robinson, it’s wheels up for Etienne.

  • D.J. Chark (1 year, $1,111,807)

I have been bold in my standing on D.J. Chark going into 2021. If he stays healthy, he will have a career year. Chark should come at quite a value at this point and time, but he will not be the second he starts producing. If you are going to buy Chark, it’s worth looking into moving on him soon after when he starts playing well because of the fact he is going to get at least Kenny Golladay money this off-season.

  • Laviska Shenault (3 years, $1,924,017)

I love the future of Laviska Shenault, even though the drafting of Travis Etienne confuses me quite a bit. It seems Urban Meyer is wanting to use Etienne in the role Shenault was born to play in, but nonetheless he is too talented to keep off the field. Shenault may seem like a slight overpay to acquire now but I feel he will be more than worth it in the long run.

  • Collin Johnson (3 years, $900,538)

Does anyone remember the amazing Collin Johnson game with Mike “The Giraffe” Glennon throwing him passes? Johnson toasted Tim’s Cleveland Browns for 19.6 Dynasty Owner points and followed it up with a solid performance the following week. There are two major takeaways from what I just wrote. The first is, Johnson flashed potential in the NFL, and the second being, I can never pass up a shot on the Browns!

  • Luke Farrell (4 years, $959,505)

If I am being honest, I do not think I am going to touch the Jacksonville tight end room. If you for some reason want to, Farrell is the one to target. Keep expectations low.

Colts

  • Jacob Eason (3 years, $1,006,816)

I am buying Jacob Eason because we do not have to look far back to see the moment the guy in front of Eason was benched. Carson Wentz is the only thing standing between Eason being a backup, or Eason becoming a starting NFL quarterback with a fantastic offensive line, and a great running game. If you buy Eason now and Wentz does not regain form, trade Eason, and make him a big part of your future (draft picks). Eason is the classic buy now, sell later player for a rebuilding roster.

  • Jonathon Taylor (3 years, $1,957,287)

I am extremely high on Jonathon Taylor and at just 22 years of age, he fits into any rebuilding owner’s plans. I know there are knocks that he performed against a cupcake schedule when he went on his tear, but it was more of him finally finding his footing and the coaching staff giving him a full workload. If you can somehow get Taylor cheap, I would be all over him.

  • Michael Pittman (3 years, $2,153,212)

If Carson Wentz does regain his M.V.P. like form Michael Pittman should be the biggest beneficiary. Pittman had a disappointing rookie season but did flash some serious potential, especially against the Titans in Week 10. If Pittman can stay healthy and gel with Wentz, he should be an excellent value.

  • Paris Campbell (2 years, $1,193,984)

The injury bug has really hit Paris Campbell hard the first two years of his career, but he remains a tremendous talent regardless. The coaching staff seemed excited to get Campbell involved last season and I am looking for more of the same in 2021. Campbell should be cheap with owners skeptical he can endure the rigors of a full NFL season.

  • Kylen Granson (4 years, $1,046,592)

If you need to see how Dynasty Owner feels about Kylen Granson just go check a couple of weeks back on Twitter @Dynasty_Owner. Granson has a path to becoming a future starting tight end with the Colts and he has the skill set to do it as well. With nothing but journeymen in front of him, Granson is in a prime position to jump start a solid career.

  • Mo Alie-Cox (1 year, $3,384,000)

The tight end room is wide open right now and it is well documented that Carson Wentz has a borderline fetish with throwing to his tight ends. As a rebuilding owner, I am looking to grab anyone of the Colts trio who could be the starter. In 2020, Cox had a couple big games but faded out big time after. In the scenario you acquire him, he does become the starter, and/or has a big game, I would trade him immediately. I know I say it a lot but buy these kinds of guys low and sell them high.

  • Jack Doyle (2 years, $7,100,000)

As I mentioned with Mo Alie-Cox I am grabbing any potential starting tight end I can for the Colts. The name of rebuilding is buying low and selling high to speed up the process and this, while small, is a great example of doing so. If you can pick up Jack Doyle, or Cox for a 3rd round pick or unwanted player right now and they become a starter you can now sell them to a contender for a 2nd or a much better player than you moved originally.

HOLD

Titans

  • Anthony Firkser (1 year, $3,000,000)

I have Anthony Firkser as the Titans only hold, even though I traded him away from my team about a month back. Obviously, all of this is in a vacuum but the roster I had was rich with tight ends and decided a 2nd round draft pick was more than enough to ship Firkser out. If you have Firkser on your roster, I would hold him and see how he starts the year out. A lot of people have overlooked how well he played when Jonnu Smith was hurt.

Texans

  • Deshaun Watson (5 years, $39,000,000)

I am not sure what is going on with Deshaun Watson and before I say what I am going to say, I want to express that I really hope these allegations are not true. I cannot see Watson taking a snap before any of this is settled, and even when it is, I do not see Watson in a Texans’ uniform again. Watson has been more than adamant that he will never play for the Texans again and at this point I believe him. The fact he has all these allegations against him, and he is still trying to stay away from the Houston organization speaks volumes. The best-case scenario is things get settled through court and when they are finished, Watson will promptly be traded elsewhere.

  • Brandin Cooks (2 years, $16,200,000)

As much as I love Brandin Cooks, I cannot place him on the buy list with the uncertainty surrounding Watson. Cooks seemed primed to be a WR1 the second Will Fuller went to Miami and then the Watson situation happened. I still see Cooks being a solid fantasy player but nothing like what he could have been. I am holding Cooks until I see how the quarterback situation plays out in H-town.

  • Keke Coutee (1 year, $797,257)

While Keke Coutee has not been spectacular during his time in the NFL, he has shown he can be a productive player. In Dynasty Owner, contenders need deep rosters and Keke Coutee is the perfect example of a good end of the bench player where you will get 25% of his weekly fantasy points. He will be a low-end production player who you can plug in if needed, and he should be cheap his entire career. I do not know about you, but I love the words cheap and production together on my team. I know all of that sounded like a buy, but he needs a quarterback before I put him there.

  • Jordan Akins (1 year, $831,271)

Akins is someone I am holding onto with dear life. I am not sure why, but I have always wanted to see this kid explode, with Akins at almost 30 years old, he is past being a breakout candidate, but I will never give up hope!

Jaguars

  • James Robinson (2 years, $763,333)

I am not sure I have ever felt worse for a healthy player the entire time I have watched football than I do for James Robinson right now. The kid defied every obstacle in his way going from an undrafted free agent running back who was widely unknown, to an absolute stud with a bright future. I am not saying Robinson does not have a bright future any longer but the better numbers he puts up the bigger payday (though we love cheap at Dynasty Owner) he gets and sharing the ball with Etienne certainly does not help matters for Robinson’s financial future. The possibility of the Jags moving Robinson is still there but for now he is a hold until we see what happens. I hope he gets moved and plays well so he can secure a big payday. He has earned it!

  • Dare Ogunbowale (1 year, $850,000)

Had the Jaguars not selected a running back early in the draft, Dare Ogunbowale would be a Buy candidate for me right now. If I run this piece again next off-season, Ogunbowale will be a Buy as he is due a new deal and will be playing for a new team. In Weeks 16, and 17 last season, Ogunbowale showed he can be a capable back in the NFL.

Colts

  • Marlon Mack (1 year, $2,000,000)

As a player, Marlon Mack has never jumped out to me as a star, but he has shown he is more than capable of being a solid NFL player. My main concern with Mack is the fact he put up average numbers behind a top tier offensive line. I am holding Mack right now with the hope he gets traded somewhere like the Rams and shows out.

  • Zach Pascal (1 year, $3,384,000)

I do not know why this moment still jumps out at me, but I remember during a Dynasty Owner live stream last year where someone said Zach Pascal would be the wide receiver 1 in all of fantasy football. We look back a year later and we see why that was a bold prediction. I am holding Pascal right now as he does have solid potential to carve out a role with the Colts, boosting his trade value.

SELL

Titans

  • Julio Jones (3 years, $22,000,000)

If you have Julio Jones and you are rebuilding, right now is the time to sell. I do not know many owners who will take on that kind of salary, but people seem stoked he is with the Titans organization, me included. I by no means feel Julio is finished as a player, in fact I think he and A.J. Brown can finish in the Top 15 wide receivers this season if both stay healthy. While this scenario would raise Julio’s trade value, I see less owners being interested in that salary during the season. If you can get a 2nd for Julio, it is a win when you are rebuilding.

  • Derrick Henry (3 years, $12,500,000)

I know I say this every week, but I hate putting players like this on the Sell list. Derrick Henry has been so much fun to watch, especially when he is on your fantasy team, but when it comes to a rebuild no one is safe, not even “DeHember.” If you are rebuilding and a contender in your league has Cam Akers, pick up the phone and get a deal done. Overreaction raises trade value.

Texans

  • Randall Cobb (2 years, $9,000,000)

I really do not have a whole lot to say on Randall Cobb and do not see why anyone would be rostering him at this point. If you somehow find someone to give you $1 Dynasty Dollar for him, do it! If you are part of the 3.2% of Dynasty Owners rostering Cobb, do yourself a favor and cut ties.

  • David Johnson (1 year, $5,000,000)

If David Johnson had not reduced his salary, there would be zero chance of moving him with the situation he is in right now. The fact Johnson did re-work his deal means he may have a little bit of trade value. Personally, I am taking anything I can get for Johnson, but I would not blame you for holding him to see what happens in Houston.

  • Mark Ingram (1 year, $2,500,000)

If I am being honest, I think Mark Ingram is done in the NFL. In 2020, Ingram looked old to put it politely, and I am not expecting any type of resurgence at his age. If you find an Ingram truther who will cough up a 3rd round pick for him, I would do it in a heartbeat. Ingram has had a fantastic ride, but I feel it’s time he hangs em up.

Jaguars

  • Carlos Hyde (2 years, $2,250,000)

Carlos Hyde is just another domino in the Urban Meyer drafting Travis Etienne in the first round game. I do not see how Hyde has much trade value, if any, at this point but I have seen crazier things happen in fantasy football. If you find a crazy owner, capitalize and take them out to dinner, you will want to work with them again in the future.

  • Marvin Jones (2 years, $6,250,000)

At the moment, there is a decent amount of hype surrounding Marvin Jones playing with Trevor Lawrence. I like Jones but let’s be honest, what is a rebuilding owner going to do with a 31-year-old boom, bust receiver. Sell Marvin Jones is what I am trying to say.

Colts

  • Carson Wentz (4 years, $32,000,000)

Believe it or not there are smart people out there who think Carson Wentz is going to return to M.V.P. form under Frank Reich. I happen to kind of be one of them. I do not necessarily think Wentz will be an M.V.P. candidate, though I do think he will get back to playing very good football. If you can find someone who believes in Wentz enough to take on his salary you must do it.

  • Nyheim Hines (1 year, $796,137)

Hines had a great season in 2020, which is exactly why I am selling him. In 2020, Hines had Phillip Rivers under center who targeted running backs at an insane rate, which plays to Hines’ strengths. He also has Jonathon Taylor in front of him who I feel is only going to get better pushing Hines down the playing time pecking order further. Hines’ value will not get any higher than it is now.

  • T.Y. Hilton (1 year, $8,000,000)

At $8 million, I can see some owners willing to take a chance on T.Y. Hilton with a potential upgrade at quarterback in Carson Wentz. I do not see any reason to keep Hilton on a rebuilding roster. If you have an offer, or a willing trade partner get the deal done.

Conclusion

I just want to thank everyone for all the support you have all shown to Dynasty Owner, none of it goes unnoticed. A quick reminder the writer’s league will be forming within the next three weeks and still has a few spots left open. If you are interested in testing your GM skills against other fantasy football writers, please contact me on Twitter. We also have a new affiliate program for you guys to use. As always don’t forget to check out Matt’s articles and videos which release on Mondays and Steve’s articles and videos which release on Wednesdays. Thank you for reading and as always good luck on your 2021 Chase for the Ring!

Dynasty Owner TE Tiers

By Steven Van Tassell

More Dynasty Owner Fantasy Football Tiers 2021. It’s time to move on to tight ends and then finish our tiers with wide receivers next week. Since Dynasty Owners only need to have one TE in their Starting lineup and one on their Bench, these tiers will be more similar to the QB tiers than the RB tiers. Technically, Dynasty Owner teams could start two TEs with one in the FLEX position, but unless you have two of the top TEs in the NFL, you’re unlikely to do so.

Similar to QBs, we have an “Avoid” tier of large salary TEs who just don’t produce enough Dynasty Owner fantasy points to have on your roster. Unlike QBs, there is a clear set of a few high-end TEs who are expensive, yet well worth their salary and should be drafted early in your Dynasty Owner start-up draft. We had five young players in the top QB tier (https://dynastyowner.com/2021/07/dynasty-owner-qb-tiers/), while there are only four players in the first three TE tiers. That’s what makes TE such a unique position in the NFL, as well as in Dynasty Owner.

After those top players, it really is “pick your poison” for the rest of the TEs. All of them have a reason why they aren’t in the top few tiers and Dynasty Owners need to determine what they want. There are many productive, yet expensive TEs out there as well as several tiers comprised of younger, cheaper TEs who might break through and prove to be a huge bargain, such as Robert Tonyan was last year. It’s up to each individual Dynasty Owner to determine what path they want to take with these TEs and how they fit into their roster and under their salary cap.

All 2021 projections come from Rotowire and are based on the Standard Dynasty Owner scoring system as outlined in the updated Dynasty Owner Constitution. Standard Dynasty Owner scoring gives you .1 points for every yard rushing or receiving, .1 point for every 2 yards passing, 1 point per reception, 6 points for a rushing, receiving or passing touchdown and 2 points for a successful 2-point conversion (rushing, receiving, or passing). Interceptions or fumbles lost cost you 3 points, while a fumble that is recovered by the player’s team is a loss of only 1 point. Bonus points are available for 100-199 yards rushing (2 points), 200 yards rushing or receiving (6 points), 300-399 yards passing (1 point) and 400 yards passing (4 points). There is also a 3 point bonus for clutch scoring, which is a score that results in a lead change in the final two minutes of the 4th quarter or overtime. Kickoff and punt return touchdowns are worth 6 points for the player and kickoff and punt returns are worth 1 point for every 40 yards.

As Many TE Tiers as Regular Season Games

As stated in the QB and RB tiers article, Dynasty Owner tiers are not the same as tiers for other fantasy football leagues or on other fantasy football websites. There are multiple factors to consider in Dynasty Owner including current salary, future salaries, 2021 projected stats and long-term potential. Dynasty Owners also need to have a Starting TE and a Bench TE in their lineup every week. There is also a FLEX position in your Dynasty Owner Starting lineup that can be filled by a TE. A minimum of 24 TEs will be collecting points in Dynasty Owner on a weekly basis. That’s why we have more tiers and more players listed than in other TE tiers articles, but fortunately, not quite as many as in the Dynasty Owner RB tiers from last week.

There are five tiers for the top nine TEs with three tiers for the elite, top four guys. That’s why there are more TE than QB tiers despite using the same number of players on a weekly basis. In fact, we have the same number of TE tiers overall, including “a” and “b” tiers as there are games in the 2021 NFL season (17). Players in each tier are listed in order of Dynasty Dollars per Point (DD/PT).

  • Tier 13 – Overpaid Veterans to Avoid Having on Your Roster

Tier 1a – The Best TE with the Lowest Salary

There are three players the top of the TE heap. All three of them are signed to a long-term contract for several million dollars per year. All three of them are expected to score over 250.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and at least 40.0 more points than any other TE. We are obviously talking about Travis Kelce, Darren Waller and George Kittle.

In 2020, they were the only three TEs to average more than 15.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game. Kittle only played in eight games, so he was TE19, while Kelce and Waller were TE1 and TE2 with over 100.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points than more any other TE.

Because Dynasty Owner uses actual NFL contracts and salaries, Darren Waller is a tier by himself. His salary of $7.45 million is nearly $7 million less than Kelce’s salary and over $7.5 million less than Kittle’s salary. His contract is also only for three more years, so he’ll be on your team for quite a while, but will cost less to drop if something happens and his production declines. Both Kelce and Kittle recently signed five-year contracts.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Darren Waller, LV$7,450,0003265.5$28,060

Tier 1b – The Best TEs with Higher Salaries

The only difference between Darren Waller and both Travis Kelce and George Kittle is salary, as all three are projected to score roughly the same number of points. Therefore, their projected 2021 DD/PT are different with Waller costing roughly half as much as either Kelce or Kittle, which puts Waller in Tier 1a, while Kelce and Kittle comprise Tier 1b.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Travis Kelce, KC$14,312,5005274.0$52,235
George Kittle, SF$15,000,0005263.5$56,926

Tier 2 – Rookie First Round Draft Pick TEs

The title says TEs, but it’s really only one TE – Kyle Pitts from the Atlanta Falcons. Pitts was the #4 overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft and the highest selected TE in NFL draft history. Pitts is widely expected to step in and be at the same level as Waller, Kelce and Kittle in 2021. However, based on projections, he is just a step below the three of them with 208.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points for 2021.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Kyle Pitts, ATL$8,227,6244208.8$39,404

For 2021, Pitts is projected to have a DD/PT value worse than Waller, but better than Kelce and Kittle as his $8.23 million salary for the next four years is several million dollars lower per year. Pitts is a step below both of them in Tier 2 because he hasn’t yet produced in the NFL, whereas the three TEs in Tiers 1a and 1b have done so more than once in the NFL. Nobody will likely fault you for drafting Pitts as high as (or higher than) Waller, Kelce or Kittle, he’s just a tier below for now.

Tier 3 – Young TEs with One Year Left on Their Contract

If you don’t get one of the TEs in Tiers 1a, 1b and 2, then it’s a steep drop down to Tier 3 in a regular dynasty league or redraft league. However, in Dynasty Owner, the difference is mitigated because the three players in Tier 3 are so much cheaper than the top four TEs, so they are much better values. Sure, none of them is going to produce as many points as those four TEs, but they may be the top receiver on their team in 2021 and were close to being so in 2020. However, all of them play for teams that spent a first round 2021 NFL draft pick on a WR and both the Dolphins and Ravens added new WRs in free agency as well.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Mark Andrews, BAL$863,2901222.5$3,880
Dallas Goedert, PHI$1,406,0681204.9$6,862
Mike Gesicki, MIA$1,652,9811177.3$9,323

The other downside is that those salaries are only valid for the 2021 Dynasty Owner season. Next year, all three are projected by spotrac.com with a market value of at least $10 million per season for three or four seasons. Enjoy their low salaries while you can!

Tier 4 – Former Iowa Hawkeye First Round Draft Picks

The two Iowa Hawkeye TEs drafted in the first round of the 2019 NFL draft comprise this tier of their own. However, Noah Fant and T.J. Hockenson aren’t the only former Hawkeye TEs who Dynasty Owners want on their roster as George Kittle has already been listed, but Kittle is better and wasn’t a first round pick (he was taken by the 49ers in the fifth round of the 2017 NFL draft).

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Noah Fant, DEN$3,147,6802204.5$15,392
T.J. Hockenson, DET$4,955,3062207.5$23,881

Both are projected to have almost the same number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and since Fant was drafted later than Hockenson (20th pick by Denver vs. 8th pick by Detroit), his salary is about $1.8 million less and therefore, he’s listed first as the better value.

Tier 5 – Young TEs with Affordable Salaries and Potential

Finally, a tier with more than three TEs. Those initial tiers comprise the top eight TEs in terms of projected 2021 scoring with a significant drop-off from the top three TEs (Kelce, Waller and Kittle) and the next five (Andrews, Pitts, Hockenson, Goedert, and Fant). The drop from Tier 4 to Tier 5 might be steeper, but all of these players have potential to go along with low salaries since none of them were first round NFL draft picks.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Adam Trautman, NO$1,124,8513140.8$7,989
Irv Smith, MIN$1,449,6092177.2$8,181
Harrison Bryant, CLE$1,016,0073104.7$9,704
Brevin Jordan, HOU$958,046484.2$11,378
Albert Okwuegbunam, DEN$1,011,011376.2$13,268
Cole Kmet, CHI$1,894,4443139.6$13,571
Pat Freiermuth, PIT$1,507,045491.7$16,435

The key word is “potential” as two of these players are rookies (Freiermuth and Jordan), while none of the others (Trautman, Smith, Bryant, Albert O and Kmet) have scored more than 100.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in a season. All but Albert O are all projected to do so in 2021 and all are projected to beat their 2020 production by a minimum of 40.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Take a chance on these guys, it may work out great, and you’ll have an affordable productive TE for a couple of seasons.

Tier 6a – Low-End, $3 Million Starting TEs with One Year Left on Their Contract

While they are listed as “low-end” for 2021, all of these TEs finished in the Top 10 in TE scoring in Dynasty Owner in 2020. None are projected to be in the Top 10 in 2021, while all are at least 27 years old and on one-year contracts worth around $3 million for 2021. 

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Logan Thomas, WAS$3,072,5001171.9$17,874
Hayden Hurst, ATL$2,759,0071141.6$19,485
Robert Tonyan, GB$3,384,0001156.4$21,637

All of them have a red flag that prevents them from ranking in a higher tier. Thomas is the oldest (30 years old), but projected to have the most Dynasty Owner fantasy points and best DD/PT for 2021. Tonyan has a potentially questionable QB situation in Green Bay and the Falcons drafted Hurst’s replacement in the first round of the NFL draft. Dynasty Owners could end up with a solid, low-end TE if they draft these guys and they produce as they did in 2020.

Tier 6b – Potential $3 Million Low-End Starting TEs

This “b” tier is comprised of three players who could have gone in Tier 6a based on salary, but since none of them have produced as well as those players, they needed to be rated slightly lower. 

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Anthony Firkser, TEN$3,000,0001147.1$20,394
Dan Arnold, CAR$3,000,0002110.0$27,273
Mo Alie-Cox, IND$3,384,000195.7$35,361

All three of these TEs had career years in 2020 and are projected to exceed that career year in 2021. It’s possible that they do, but Dynasty Owners shouldn’t expect these guys to be a regular in their weekly Starting lineup. Only Arnold has more than one year left on his contract, so they all can be easily dropped next year if they don’t perform, or get a large multi-year contract that your team can’t afford.

Tier 7a – Cheap Contract TEs who Need to Prove Themselves

Everyone here has an annual salary of less than $1 million and a projected 2021 DD/PT value of under $10,000. However, none are projected as a Top 24 scoring TE in 2021. Each has just one or two years to establish themselves as a top-flight TE.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Dawson Knox, BUF$880,4002125.7$7,004
Christopher Herndon, NYJ$792,8411113.0$7,016
Dalton Schultz, DAL$728,0901102.0$7,138
Kaden Smith, NYG$680,002278.6$8,651
Jordan Akins, HOU$831,271186.1$9,655

Only Akins is over 25 years old, so the others still could have long, productive careers ahead of them. Unlike the Tier 3 TEs with one year left on their contract and similar DD/PT values, none of the TEs in this tier are one of the top receivers on their NFL teams. The possibility that each could make a lot more salary in a year or two puts them a couple of tiers below the Tier 5 TEs. While both Knox and Smith have two years remaining on their contract, as does Irv Smith in Tier 5, neither Knox nor Kaden Smith is projected to have as many Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 as Irv Smith.

Tier 7b – More Cheap Contract TEs who Need to Prove Themselves

All of these TEs are just a tier below the previous tier as in 2021, they are projected to have worse DD/PT values than the “a” tier TEs with similar salaries.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Will Dissly, SEA$777,568159.6$13,046
Durham Smythe, MIA$773,059144.8$17,256
Donald Parham, LAC$695,000138.6$18,005
Ian Thomas, CAR$801,999144.5$18,022
Hakeem Butler, PHI$780,000136.5$21,370
Jacob Hollister, BUF$1,127,500150.8$22,195
Drew Sample, CIN$1,376,574257.8$23,816
Foster Moreau, LV$752,098222.4$33,576

For one reason or another, all of them have lower projections. Buffalo and Cincinnati both have plenty of other pass catchers ahead of Hollister and Sample. Dissly, Thomas and Parham are on one year contracts and had their NFL teams sign another TE to a bigger salary to seemingly play ahead of them. Smythe and Butler have crowded TE rooms and another low salary TE who has had very good seasons in the past in front of them. Finally, Foster Moreau is stuck behind Darren Waller in Las Vegas, but is probably a good handcuff to have for Waller owners in case of injury.

Tier 8a – Expensive, but Productive Veterans on One-Year Contracts

Solid and steady. That’s what you’re getting for your money from these six guys.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Jared Cook, LAC$4,500,0001167.2$26,914
Gerald Everett, SEA$6,000,0001145.3$41,294
Rob Gronkowski, TB$8,000,0001185.3$43,173
Eric Ebron, PIT$6,000,0001130.7$45,907
Zach Ertz, PHI$8,500,0001137.3$61,908
Jimmy Graham, CHI$8,000,0001123.7$64,673

They are all pretty expensive with salaries of between $4.5 million and $8 million for the 2021 season, but all of them are projected to finish in the Top 30 TEs in Dynasty Owner after finishing that high in 2020 as well. Except for Zach Ertz who missed five games, but was still TE31.

Tier 8b – High Salary TEs with Multi-Year Contracts

Both of these TEs are a notch below the Tier 8a TEs because they have expensive, multi-year salaries in the same annual salary range.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Blake Jarwin, DAL$5,500,0003145.0$37,931
Tyler Higbee, LA$7,250,0003178.8$40,548

Tier 9 – TEs with $10 Million+ Annual Salaries and Multi-Year Contracts

These are the only TEs besides Travis Kelce and George Kittle who will make more than $10 million in 2021 and for at least three more years. Each took advantage of free agency to sign with a new team after success somewhere else. However, none are expected to be as productive as either Kelce or Kittle, so they are several tiers below them.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Austin Hooper, CLE$10,500,0003166.1$63,215
Hunter Henry, NE$12,500,0003176.9$70,661
Jonnu Smith, NE$12,500,0004158.1$79,064

The projections of roughly 100.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points less than both Kelce (274.0) and Kittle (263.5) means they have higher DD/PT values. That’s the problem as they are being paid nearly as much as Kelce and Kittle, while producing far fewer points. There are other expensive and less productive TEs out there (Tier 13), but their salaries make these three players less desirable than the TEs in earlier tiers.

Tier 10 – Disappointing 2017 First Round Picks Making $6.013 Million in 2021

Take your pick of these three guys. All of them are 25 or 26 years old, were drafted in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft, and are playing on their fifth year option salary of $6.013 million. None has really lived up to that lofty draft selection, but could play well in 2021 and find themselves with a nice payday in 2022. Or they could end up signing for one year and less money with a new team in 2022 after a poor season in 2021.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Evan Engram, NYG$6,013,0001145.5$41,326
O.J. Howard, TB$6,013,0001144.3$41,670
David Njoku, CLE$6,013,0001107.6$55,883

Tier 11 – Cheap Rookie Flyers

Here’s a collection of cheap rookie flyers who might break out (or might not). All of them were drafted in the third to fifth round of the 2021 NFL draft (interestingly, there were no TEs drafted in the sixth or seventh rounds), except Kenny Yeobah who was not drafted. That explains why his salary is more than $100,000 less than the rest and he is only signed for three, not four years.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Kenny Yeboah, NYJ$815,000358.7$13,884
Jacob Harris, LA$994,836455.2$18,022
Tommy Tremble, CAR$1,231,608449.6$24,831
Hunter Long, MIA$1,242,176442$29,576
Kylen Granson, IND$1,046,592421$49,838
Noah Gray, KC$948,444415.5$61,190
Zach Davidson, MIN$945,442413.1$72,171
John Bates, WAS$1,050,604411.6$90,569
Tre McKitty, LAC$1,196,46240.0N/A
Luke Farrell, JAC$959,50540.0N/A

They could turn out to be another George Kittle (49ers’ fifth round pick in 2017), or they could be the next Devin Asiasi, Dalton Keene or Josiah Deguara. All of three of those players were drafted in the third round of the 2020 NFL draft and proceeded to score few Dynasty Owner fantasy points during the 2020 season and are listed as no better than third string right now. They are our next tier.

Tier 12 – Cheap TEs Drafted Recently Who Didn’t Pan Out as Rookies

Here’s a collection of cheap TEs who would have been in Tier 9 last year, or maybe even Tier 5, but because they did next to nothing in their rookie seasons, have been dropped down several tiers. Sternberger did nothing in his rookie season in 2019 with 0.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points and only had 29.6 points in his second season, hence his appearance here.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Dalton Keene, NE$1,124,851360.4$18,623
Jace Sternberger, GB$966,382234.0$28,423
Devin Asiasi, NE$1,145,705337.5$30,552
Josiah Deguara, GB$1,136,94130.0N/A

Two Packers and two Patriots. None are likely to do much in 2021 as the Patriots went out and signed Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith to big, multi-year contracts, while the Packers re-signed Robert Tonyan and Marcedes Lewis. If any Dynasty Owners still have these guys on their roster, they likely drafted them last year and are sticking with them because of the affordable contract.

Tier 13 – Overpaid Veterans to Avoid Having on Your Roster

None of these guys are worth drafting in your 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up draft, or holding on to on your roster in an established league. They cost too much at a minimum of $6 million per year, are projected to finish outside of the Top 35 TEs in 2021 and none is the clear starter for their NFL team. While all of them are projected to score more points than any of the TEs in the previous two tiers, their salaries make them too expensive to justify having on a Dynasty Owner roster.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Jack Doyle, IND$7,100,000298.8$71,862
Cameron Brate, TB$6,800,000389.6$75,893
Kyle Rudolph, NYG$6,000,000270.3$85,349
C.J. Uzomah, CIN$6,100,000162.7$97,289

Three out of the four are 30 years old or more and have two or more years left on their contracts (Uzomah is “only” 28 and has just one year left). Dynasty Owners are heeding the title of this tier as all four of them are currently owned in less than 10% of Dynasty Owner leagues. Uzomah is the youngest and least costly of the four TEs, since he only has one year left on his contract, but is projected to score the fewest points and is the only one who has 0% ownership.

Conclusion

TE tiers are in the books! There are lots of tiers, mainly because of the differences among the most productive and coveted TEs out there. We did cover a lot of the TEs available in Dynasty Owner, while leaving out all of the veteran free agents who have yet to sign for the 2021 season since it’s difficult to slot them without knowing their salary or team. There are a lot of young cheap TEs out there as well who are not likely to score much, but are there if you need a cheap Practice Squad stash. The only position left to tier is WR and that will be the topic for next week. Let me know what you think of these TE tiers on Twitter (@SteveVT33) or in the comments section on YouTube.

In addition to more tiers, Dynasty Owner has other great content to help you draft your dynasty. We can also provide guidance as you continue to tweak your roster after your rookie or start-up draft is over so you can win your league. My articles and videos to get you ready for your 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up league team are being released on Wednesdays. Keep an eye out for new articles from the rest of our team of Dynasty Owner writers as well. Matt Morrison – The Jerk (@Dynastyjerk) is doing a deep dive on individual teams that you can check out on Mondays, while Jay Pounds (@jaypoundsnfl) looks at how to rebuild your Dynasty Owner roster on Fridays. All of the articles will be released at 1 PM (Eastern) with videos and podcast released at 3 PM (Eastern).

Please read all of their articles and follow all three of us plus Dynasty Owner (@Dynasty_Owner) on Twitter. Hopefully this article is helpful for everyone who has a 2021 start-up draft coming soon, and at least interesting for those of you who have already drafted or have an established team. Maybe it’ll give you and other Dynasty Owners some ideas for potential trades too. Thanks, and have a great day!

Steven Van Tassell is the Head of Content for Dynasty Owner

Follow us on Twitter: @SteveVT33 and @Dynasty_Owner

Contract Breakdowns: Detroit Lions

By Matt Morrison (@dynastyjerk)

There are only six more teams that remain in my “Team Breakdown” series.  Two more teams from the NFC North and the entire NFC East is all that remains.  These next six articles should lead us right through the pre-season and almost all the way to the start of the 2021 NFL season.  After I finish these six weeks’ worth of breakdowns, I will most likely give a one week recap of some of the most important players we have discussed.  I’ll also include any pre-season news or game breakdown.

Free Agents

For now, here are some of the important Lions players that were free agents after the 2020 season.  They are…

Marvin Jones

Mohamed Sanu

Kenny Golladay

Danny Amendola

Adrian Peterson

Marvin Jones had a very healthy 2020 season for the Lions.  His season included 76 receptions, 978 receiving yards and 9 touchdowns.  Believe it or not, that was good enough to be WR18 in Dynasty Owner.  Jones found himself a new team in the offseason as Detroit failed to re-sign him.  He was added by the Jaguars to the tune of a 2 year – 12.5 million dollar contract (or $6.25 million per year).  Jones is 31, and he joins a somewhat crowded receiving team.  He will compete against D.J. Chark, Laviska Shenault, James Robinson and Travis Etienne for receptions.

Mohamed Sanu signed with the San Francisco 49ers at the end of March.  If you remember, he started the 2020 season with the 49ers but was cut in October.  He spent several weeks on the Lions practice squad before seeing game time towards the end of the season.  There isn’t a whole lot to talk about with Sanu.  Unlike Jones, Sanu has been a somewhat irrelevant fantasy wide receiver over the last two years.  In 2020, he managed less than 20 receptions and only a single touchdown.  I wouldn’t declare that Sanu’s fantasy career is over, but apparently even a 1.14 million dollar contract is too expensive for Dynasty Owners.  He is owned in less than 2.5% of leagues.

Kenny Golladay is clearly the big name on this list.  He signed a 4 year – $72 million contract with the NY Giants shortly after free agency opened up.  At $18 million per year, he is the sixth most expensive wide receiver to own.  ***Trivia Question:  Golladay is tied with two other wide receivers at exactly $18,000,000 per year.  Can you guess the other two receivers?***  I’m not going to talk about Golladay as this isn’t a Giants’ article.  Instead, let’s discuss what Golladay’s vacancy means to the rest of the Lions’ offense.  There is no doubt that the departure leaves a large void in the receiving core.  The top receivers on Detroit’s depth chart are Tyrell Williams ($4,000,000), Breshad Perriman ($2,500,000), Quintez Cephus ($899,822) and T.J. Hockenson ($4,955,306).  No one would call this a great receiving core, and most would call it well below average.  If there is a silver lining, it’s the fact that none of these receivers are terribly expensive.  Of these four, Hockenson should see the most work and should have the most productive fantasy season.  But as I said, feel free to take a chance on any of the other three.  Their cheap salaries and target projections make them speculative additions.

Finally, we have two players that have yet to sign a contract.  Both Danny Amendola and Adrian Peterson were not re-signed by the Lions.  It’s unlikely either will re-sign with Detroit this late into the off-season, but it’s not impossible.  Each player will retain their previous salary on Dynasty Owner until they sign a new contract.  This isn’t a big deal for Peterson owners as his previous contract was $1,050,000 per year.  He is still owned in 11.2 percent of leagues so there is clearly a decent number of people that want to wait and see where/if the former MVP lands.  (By the way, I agree with this strategy).  Amendola on the other hand is too much of a burden to hold onto.  He will cost $5,000,000 (as a placeholder) to keep him until he re-signs.  That is too much, and it just takes up valuable space on your roster.  Amendola is owned in less than 1 percent of Dynasty Owner leagues, and that is an appropriate number until his contract situation becomes clear.

That finishes the past and present free agents.  Today, I’m going to break down a single player.  His name is D’Andre Swift…

Contract Breakdown

For this contract breakdown, I am going to use a stat that I used last season.  This stat appeared in my “Opportunity is (Almost) Everything” articles.  In those articles, I showed some player’s total opportunities (rushes + targets), opportunities per snap, and points per opportunity.  Points per opportunity (Points/Opp) is what I was to discuss with you today.  On November 11th last year, I wrote about how D’Andre Swift was leading all running backs, inside the Top 35, in Points/Opp.  This is an excerpt from that article..

“Who do you think leads the Top 35 running backs in points per opportunity (efficiency rating)?  That player is D’Andre Swift.  He is currently averaging 1.30 fantasy points per opportunity (rushes plus targets).  To put that in context, the number two player in efficiency is Alvin Kamara at 1.28 points/opportunity.  If Swift had the same number of opportunities as Kamara and stayed on the same efficiency pace, he would lead all running backs in fantasy points this year.  Obviously Swift has a small sample size as far as opportunities go, but he shouldn’t be penalized for that.  He has been one of the most efficient players in all of football this year, and it’s time he deserves some praise and hopefully some increased usage.  I was so shocked when I saw him at the top of the list that I simply wrote “SWIFT!!!” in my rough draft.  I will be upgrading him in my rankings, and I look forward to tracking his Points/Opp throughout the season and his career.  – TheJerk, Opportunity is (Almost) Everything, 11/11/20

Essentially, this was a way to further try and sum up a player’s raw value or efficiency.  This statistic takes into account the fact that some players may not see a lot of playing time for various reasons.  It simply shows how many points a player averages for a single opportunity.  Here is how the Top 20 running back point scorers fared in Points/Opp in the 2020 season…

 Fantasy PointsCarriesTargetsPoints/Opp
A. Kamara379.91871071.29
N. Hines203.689761.23
D. Swift188.8114571.10
N. Chubb218.7190181.05
C. Carson186.8141461.00
A. Jones262.9201631.00
J. McKissic188.4851100.97
D. Cook352.8312540.96
J. Taylor261.8232400.96
A. Gibson204.2170440.95
D. Henry368.1378310.90
K. Hunt221.5198510.89
M. Davis205.5165700.87
J. Robinson259.4240600.86
D. Montgomery269.8247680.86
R. Jones192.3192420.82
M. Gordon198.4215440.77
J. Jacobs236.2273450.74
K. Drake193.2239310.72
E. Elliott221.7245710.70

D’Andre comes in at third in this efficiency ranking.  Here is another way I like to describe this statistic.  If every player on this list had the exact same opportunities throughout the year, and produced at the same rate they did in 2020, this list is how they would rank at the end of the season.  Swift was more efficient than Chubb, but he was slightly less efficient than Hines and Kamara.  What’s even more impressive is that all four of these running backs were on cheap salaries in the 2020 season.  I know what some of you are thinking…”Yeah, but it’s expected that as the volume increases, the production tends to decrease.”  I would largely agree with this statement.  Bodies get worn down throughout the year, and more volume means more chance for injury.  Even if injury doesn’t occur, people just get tired.  However, as you can see from the list above, no one in the Top 7 had 300 opportunities.  The only players that had more than 300 were Cook, Montgomery, Jacobs, Elliott and Henry (Henry actually had over 400 opportunities).

Back to my main point though…D’Andre Swift was one of the most efficient running backs in 2020.  This isn’t even taking into account his very cheap salary ($2,134,728).  I predict that Swift’s usage will increase by around 60 percent in the 2021 season.  I don’t expect his efficiency to stay the same (unless he’s the next coming of Alvin Kamara), but I do expect him to remain in the Top 10 running backs in terms of Points/Opp.

***The two other wide receivers that make exactly $18,000,000 per year are Tyreek Hill and Odell Beckham Jr.

Thank you for tuning in and reading.  Message me on Twitter (@dynastyjerk) and let me know if you have any questions or concerns.  I would appreciate it if you followed @Dynasty_Owner on Twitter as well as subscribed to Dynasty Owner on YouTube.  Thank you all.  Take care and be safe.

TheJerk

Buy, Sell, and Hold – AFC West Edition

By: Jay Pounds (@JayPoundsNFL)

I honestly feel like a kid waiting on Christmas right now waiting for football to start. As we continue to inch closer and closer, I will continue to break down what I feel is every player who will have an impact on our Dynasty Owner season. I know sometimes these rebuilding seasons can be frustrating but as I always say your season is what you make of it. If you are rebuilding the last thing you want to do is wait and let the rebuild come to you. You should be trying to attack every weak spot on your roster by trading and picking up young guys who have high upside.

In this week’s article, we will be breaking down the AFC West and what rebuilding owners should do with each player in the division, including the 2-time defending AFC champion Kansas City Chiefs. I will place each player into one of three categories titled Buy, Sell, or Hold. If you see a player in the Buy category it means he is someone you will want to have on your rebuilding roster, and they are worth trading for if the price is right. Players in the Hold category are players that won’t fetch enough value in a trade to compensate for the upside they have, or they have roadblocks in the way of playing time, a great example of this would be Michael Gallup. The players who are in the sell category are players I feel should be on championship contending rosters, or players who just do not fit a rebuilding timeline. If there is anyone you feel I left out or put in the wrong category feel free to let me know on Twitter!

BUY

Chiefs

  • Patrick Mahomes – 11 years, $45,000,000

As great as Patrick Mahomes is some may question why he is a buy with such a massive contract. While this is a solid argument I feel it will be a value in a few years as the salary cap continues to rise. The only reason not to take on Mahomes if you are rebuilding is if you truly feel we have seen the best of him (we have not). $60 million contracts are not far away in the NFL, so get him while you still can!

  • Clyde Edwards-Helaire – 3 years, $2,705,393

Clyde Edwards-Helaire may be my top owned player throughout all my fantasy teams by the time the season starts because of how cheap he got. I understand the hate on CEH, but I don’t agree with it. The kid came into a well-oiled machine of an offense and had 1,100 scrimmage yards on top of missing three games because of injury. I also see him getting a pretty significant bump in passing game work in 2021. If you are sleeping on him going into the year I feel you will come to regret it when all is said and done.

  • Byron Pringle – 1 year, $2,133,000

Byron Pringle has been a quiet, yet solid pro in his days with the Kansas City Chiefs. I have Pringle as a buy here because someone in the Chiefs receiving room must emerge as the number two guy. As a rebuilding owner I’m only looking to acquire the Chiefs 2nd guy to move him in a later deal, as I feel they will draft someone at the position next year.

  • Mecole Hardman – 2 years, $1,248,763

Mecole Hardman like Byron Pringle has a clear-cut opportunity for the number 2 receiver role in Kansas City. Fantasy managers have been excited for Hardman since the day he was drafted, and he has yet to pan out. I am buying Hardman anywhere I can but be careful not to overpay on someone who has not done it in the NFL yet.

  • Cornell Powell – 4 years, $930,038

I have seen a ton of buzz on Powell since being drafted by the Chiefs and I honestly don’t agree with it. Powell had a so-so college career at Clemson and was not talked about all that much before the NFL draft. All of that said, I do have him as a buy simply because he is young and attached to Patrick Mahomes.

  • Antonio Callaway – 1 year, $920,000

Antonio Callaway is a complete flier at this point in his career but just like the few listed before him, he plays in the right offense. Callaway started his career with the Browns and flashed success as a rookie, but after character concerns coming into the league he found himself in trouble shortly after being drafted. If Callaway can find his way in KC, he could be a steal that absolutely no one is talking about.

Chargers

  • Justin Herbert – 3 years, $6,644,688

I won’t speak to much here on Herbert as his play at the quarterback position as a rookie sums up why you want this kid on your roster. I have said it many times and will say it many more, young quarterbacks are Dynasty Owner gold.

  • Joshua Kelly – 3 years, $1,018,835

At the beginning of 2020, we saw Joshua Kelly involved early and often giving his owners a lot of hope. Once Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson went down, it seemed like Kelly was going to be the featured guy. Instead, it turned out to be more of a committee approach featuring Kalen Ballage. Kelly is a longshot, but you can get him for next to nothing at this point.

  • Larry Rountree – 4 years, $913,940

The Joshua Kelly replacement is going to be none other than Larry Rountree. I am not expecting him to have a big impact in year one if Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson stay healthy, but he is in play to have a big role in 2022. I can also see the possibility of him being involved early as Jackson and Ekeler are not known for running between the tackles. Rountree has a wide range of outcomes and will be cheap to acquire. Rountree for power back in L.A.!!

  • Josh Palmer – 4 years, $1,258,365

While the Chargers did elect to bring Mike Williams back on his fifth year option, I still think Palmer can be effective in year one. Palmer underwhelmed big time at Tennessee in college but has all the tools to be the type of receiver the Chargers envisioned Mike Williams to be when they drafted him in the first round.

  • Jalen Guyton – 1 year, $540,000)\

Jalen Guyton quietly showed great progress throughout 2020 and may have earned himself a role moving forward. The number 2 spot in L.A. is Mike Williams spot to lose but the 3rd spot is wide open in an offense who put up a ton of points last season. If you can get your hands on Guyton and he does win the job, I would look to flip him before the season is over and add some extra draft capital to your team.

  • Tre’ McKitty – 4 years, $1,196,462

I talked about Tre’ McKitty a while back and love the future outlook of this kid. In front of McKitty on the Chargers roster is an aging Jared Cook who seems to just catch the ball and fall down at this stage of his career. I do not expect McKitty to overtake Cook instantly but by the end of the year, I would not be surprised to see McKitty as a starting tight end who is tied to Justin Herbert for many years to come.

Raiders

  • Henry Ruggs – 3 years, $4,167,906

I am not sure there was a more upsetting position player than Henry Ruggs in 2020. Ruggs was the first wide receiver taken in last year’s draft ahead of guys like Justin Jefferson, CeeDee Lamb, Jerry Jeudy, and Tee Higgins, making the Ruggs selection that much worse. You can probably pick up Ruggs for a 2nd round pick plus a little something extra to make the other owner feel warm and fuzzy. The Raiders will give Ruggs every chance in the world to succeed this season, which is why he is an easy buy for rebuilding owners.

  • Darren  Waller – 3 years, $7,450,000

In my opinion, Waller is a massive buy for rebuilding owners with a big but, which is if you are just starting your rebuild I would wait until after this season to buy him, so he is not winning your team a bunch of games and hurting your draft capital. At just 28 years old, Waller should still be producing big time when your team is ready to compete. We have yet to see the best of Darren Waller on a football field.

  • Bryan Edwards – 3 years, $1,173,113

Does everyone remember how hot of a name Bryan Edwards was at this time last off-season? Edwards had an insane amount of hype and I honestly feel like it was because the Raiders had no one for him to compete with. Fast forward a year and Edwards is being talked about some, but nothing like last season. Odds tell us one of Henry Ruggs or Bryan Edwards will have a solid year based on volume alone. Rebuilding owners should acquire these guys now and see what happens.

  • Hunter Renfrow – 2 years, $708,987

While Hunter Renfrow should likely be a hold, I am going to go out on a limb and label him a buy. He will be a longshot and will never be a star, but he can offer consistent bench scoring, or if a receiver or two gets hurt for the Raiders you may be able to sell him for a good amount more than it took to get him. Remember rebuilding owners just because they are a buy before the season it does not mean you need to keep them forever.

  • Marcus Mariota – 1 year, $3,500,000

I have Marcus Mariota here for two reasons, one being he looked great in relief last season for Carr, and second because the Raiders seem to hate Carr as much as Bruce Arians hates Ronald Jones. If you have Mariota on a rebuilding roster and Carr goes down for the year, someone will pay a premium for Mariota at his current contract.

Broncos

  • Javonte Williams – 4 years, $2,216,438

Like I always say I tend to shy away from running backs at the start of a rebuild but Williams should not see a massive workload in year one which should preserve his body some. Williams is the ideal rebuilding running back because he has a bright future and should not win you any weeks in year one sharing time with Melvin Gordon. Buying Williams now will be expensive, but his asking price should only go up from here on out.

  • Jerry Jeudy – 3 years, $3,798,243

Jerry Jeudy had a rough collection of quarterbacks throwing him the ball in 2020, yet he still had a solid season and really picked it up towards the end of the year. These are three of the quarterbacks Jeudy was stuck catching passes from last season, Drew Lock, Jeff Driskel, and Kendall Hinton. Big time production is coming for Jeudy owners.

  • Courtland Sutton – 1 year, $1,710,480

As much as I love Courtland Sutton, I had a lot of trouble putting him in with the players rebuilding owners should be buying. The issues I have with Sutton have zero to do with his talent on the field but with him coming off an injury and his salary getting ready to go up significantly I am not sure he is right for rebuilding owners. If you have cap room and can afford to keep him next season, I would take the risk if Sutton comes cheap enough.

  • K.J. Hamler – 3 years, $1,784,282

Hamler reminds me of a toddler who just ate an entire bag of pixy sticks because of the way you see him zooming all over the field and he is very tough to locate at times. Hamler has the makings of today’s DeSean Jackson and if that turns out to be true, he is someone you will want on your rebuilding roster. Hamler should not cost much more than a 3rd round pick right now as he is still a year or two out from really making a difference, which is the perfect time to buy.

  • Noah Fant – 2 years, $3,147,680

Noah Fant is a young athletic tight end who has gotten better each year in the league. If I am a rebuilding owner buying Fant I am praying he does not completely explode until his contract is finished. If Fant continues to slowly get better each year until his deal is up, he will probably get Darren Waller money, but if he explodes beforehand he is going to get pricey quick. The tight end position is a true difference maker in fantasy, if you are rebuilding make sure you find an up-and-coming stud.

  • Albert Okwuegbunam – 3 years, $1,011,011

I hope all of you watch the video and hear how bad I mess this man’s name up. Albert Okwuegbunam is a solid young tight end who seems like he will find a steady role in the NFL. I am not expecting Albert O to become a star by any means, but he could be someone who is an extremely solid bench player in the coming years.

HOLD

Chiefs

  • Darwin Thompson – 2 years, $661,960

I will keep it short and sweet with Darwin Thompson as he could probably be left off the list at this point. If you have Thompson, he will net you nothing in a trade. If you must, hold onto him and see what happens. I would prefer to outright drop Thompson for someone with more upside.

  • Demarcus Robinson – 1 year, $1,127,500

I have Robinson on the Hold list instead of the Buy list like the rest of the Chiefs receivers because he is a bit older and has had more chances to make an impact. Robinson is definitely worth a roster spot, and I would recommend holding to see what happens. He may blow up and net amazing value in a trade.

Chargers

  • Justin Jackson – 1 year, $570,000

If Justin Jackson could ever stay healthy he could be an excellent change of pace back. In 2020, Jackson had a fantastic opportunity with Austin Ekeler going down and just could not stay healthy. As a rebuilding owner I would hold onto him for the year unless you get blown away by an offer. Jackson will be a free agent this year and could end up in a Tarik Cohen type role elsewhere.

  • Mike Williams – 1 year, $15,680,000

Has anyone had enough of Mike Williams after just four NFL seasons? If Williams can ever put together a full season he could be a tremendous value. Williams has already had a 10 touchdown season and a 1,000 receiving yard season in his career, yet it’s been more disappointing than not. I’m keeping Williams for now but if he explodes and you can find a taker I would move him in a heartbeat.

Raiders

  • Derek Carr – 2 years, $25,000,000

As I mentioned in the part featuring Marcus Mariota, the Raiders hate Derek Carr. Carr has been a solid NFL quarterback since taking over the Raiders miserable franchise, making them relevant again, at least somewhat relevant. The Raiders have done a horrid job of building around Carr. If you do not believe me just look at some of the guys Jon Gruden has drafted; cough, cough Henry Ruggs over CeeDee Lamb, or Justin Jefferson. As of now Carr is a hold as you will not get much in return for him because of his salary and the fact he offers zero upside running the ball.

  • Kenyan Drake – 2 years, $5,500,000

As much as I love the talent of Kenyan Drake, I have to say I cannot remember a more frustrating fantasy career. In the beginning of Drake’s career, we all just wanted to see him get consistent playing time. He then gets moved to Arizona where he blew up over the back half of the season in 2019. Drake was given the transition tag and the keys to the Arizona backfield where he was a disappointment in 2020. Fast-forward to 2021 and Drake is now behind Josh Jacobs after it seemed he would be a Cardinal for a while.

  • Willie Snead – 1 year, $1,127,500

At this stage of Willie Snead’s career, I am not expecting him to do a whole lot, but we have seen crazier things happen in the NFL. If you already have Snead rostered I would hold onto him just in case Henry Ruggs and Bryan Edwards are complete busts again this season.

  • Zay Jones – 1 year, $2,500,000

I won’t waste much of your time talking about Zay Jones, but he could end up in a situation like I just mentioned with Willie Snead.

Broncos

  • Mike Boone – 2 years, $1,925,000

If you own Mike Boone I see him as a must Hold. Boone has been talked about as an extremely talented running back who just can’t find the field. Boone started in Minnesota behind Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison and the second it looks like he is finally a clear-cut backup to Melvin Gordon, the Broncos draft Javonte Williams. If Williams does not pan out, or if Gordon has lost a step Mike Boone could step in with no problems.

  • Tim Patrick – 1 year, $3,384,000

2020 was the Tim Patrick show in Denver! If Patrick didn’t have another year remaining on his deal in 2020, he would be an easy cheap buy right now, but the fact is he will be playing behind Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, and a 2nd year K.J. Hamler, who has potential to make noise, keeps him off the Buy list. I’m holding Patrick in the hopes that Sutton is not ready to start the year and, in that scenario, I’m offing Patrick for whatever I can get.

SELL

Chiefs

  • Darrel Williams – 1 year, $1,600,000

It seems Darrel Williams is going into the year as the clear cut backup for Clyde Edwards-Helaire. Williams did not impress in the work he received in 2020 and should be firmly on every rebuilding owner’s trade block. Get what you can before you can’t!

  • Tyreek Hill – 2 years, $18,000,000

As I mentioned last week with Nick Chubb and Lamar Jackson, I hate labeling these players as a sell but in Dynasty Owner it makes even more sense. Tyreek Hill is not going anywhere for a while, but he will be getting a massive new deal in just two years. Even as great as Hill is, if I’m rebuilding, I’d take the big package he will fetch and move on.

  • Travis Kelce – 5 years, $14,312,500

Travis Kelce is perhaps the best tight end we have ever seen in the NFL and I’m telling you to get rid of him now. At 31 years of age, Kelce will probably be producing when you are ready to compete, but it makes much more sense to go after players like Kyle Pitts, Mark Andrews, George Kittle, or Darren Waller who you can get for Kelce no problem and all of whom are younger. Rebuilding is all about trading current productive players for future productive players and Kelce is no exception.

Chargers

  • Austin Ekeler – 3 years, $6,125,000

Austin Ekeler is my favorite sell on the list, simply because he is highly productive on a team friendly deal. Ekeler has half of the contract as the other RBs in his range with a whopping three years remaining. If you are moving Ekeler make sure the other owner realizes what a value his contract is in a very weak running back market. Oh, and being attached to Justin Herbert never hurts.

  • Jared Cook – 1 year, $4,500,000

I am guessing Jared Cook’s best days have come and gone. Cook can still be a productive tight end for a couple more seasons but has no business being on any rebuilding roster. Jared Cook is no different than Eric Ebron who I mentioned last week as an aging tight end who can help contenders. Move him for whatever you can get at this point.

Raiders

  • Josh Jacobs – 2 years, $2,983,350

While Josh Jacobs is no Nick Chubb, it still feels gross to call someone like him a sell with how the running back landscape is looking. In 2021, if you have a Top 20-25 running back you should be able to get 1.5 times the value you would have last year. The running back market looks like a steaming pile of poop at the moment and rebuilding owners with running backs should take advantage of it.

  • John Brown – 1 year, $3,750,000

I know we all remember how Nelson Agholor came out of nowhere with the Raiders last season and put up a very solid year, solid enough to land a sizable contract from the Patriots. Barring a complete turnaround for both Henry Ruggs and Bryan Edwards, Brown should step into the role Agholor played so well last season. Brown is a borderline hold but I would sell him if the opportunity presents itself.

Broncos

  • Drew Lock – 2 years, $1,752,704

I do not know how many times I’ve said it, but cheap quarterbacks are gold in Dynasty Owner. At this point we are all unsure if Lock will be the starter this year for the Broncos, but someone will take a flier on him just because he will come cheap. Drew Lock is someone I would let go for any draft capital as a rebuilding owner. I also would not blame you if you held Lock to see if he is the starter when the season starts, which will no doubt raise his trade value.

  • Teddy Bridgewater – 1 year, $11,499,000

If I own Teddy Bridgewater, I am selling him immediately. There is a good chance (in my opinion) Lock is the starter at the beginning of the season because he was drafted early by the Broncos. If that scenario plays out, you will likely get nothing out of Bridgewater and if you do get something, it will be minimal. If Bridgewater is the Broncos perceived starter in 2021, I highly recommend you capitalize as soon as possible. The other thing to look at with Bridgewater is do you really think Bridgewater will be starting come 2022. I know I do not.

  • Melvin Gordon – 1 year, $8,000,000

Finally, we have the controversial Melvin Gordon. Gordon is facing a suspension this season, which could lead to his demise in Denver. While Gordon is away, it will do nothing but give the coaching staff opportunities to look at Javonte Williams and Mike Boone. If I have Gordon and there is a decent offer on the table, he is as good as gone. Gordon is also another player you could gamble and hold, but I would not recommend it with him.

Conclusion

Here you have it guys, half of the AFC has been broken down into categories for you. I would love to hear if you feel different about players than I do and why.

I want to take a second to thank all of you for playing Dynasty Owner and helping the platform grow. If you plan to invite some friends over to the site, be sure to check into the all-new affiliate program to earn some cash back for helping spread the good word. As always don’t forget to check out Matt’s articles and videos which release on Mondays and Steve’s articles and videos which release on Wednesdays. Thank you for reading and as always good luck on your 2021 Chase for the Ring!

Dynasty Owner RB Tiers

By Steven Van Tassell

It’s time to continue creating the first (and still the only) Dynasty Owner Fantasy Football Tiers 2021 and move on to the next position – running backs. The RB tiers are not going to be the same as the QB tiers since RBs and QBs are not the same position, nor are they treated the same way in the NFL in terms of usage and contracts. Almost every team plays multiple RBs and have several viable (or potentially viable) fantasy RBs, whereas only one QB starts every week and is worth using in your Dynasty Owner lineup on a weekly basis.

The RB tiers were not as easy to put together as the QB tiers. With so many more RBs than QBs, there were more players to include so while I wanted to limit the number of tiers since we had more than 10 QB tiers, it didn’t happen.

Unlike QBs, we’re not going to have an “Avoid” tier. There are just too many RBs who could or should be drafted that there’s no time to go through the players who shouldn’t be taken right now. All of the QBs to avoid were veterans with very large contracts who are productive, but not productive enough to use and take up a significant portion of your Dynasty Owner salary cap. There aren’t any RBs who fit that definition since few very RBs make over $10 million per year and those players are really, really good. No RBs make as much as those veteran QBs who aren’t recommended to have on your Dynasty Owner roster.

All 2021 projections come from Rotowire and are based on the Standard Dynasty Owner scoring system as outlined in the updated Dynasty Owner Constitution. Standard Dynasty Owner scoring gives you .1 points for every yard rushing or receiving, .1 point for every 2 yards passing, 1 point per reception, 6 points for a rushing, receiving or passing touchdown and 2 points for a successful 2-point conversion (rushing, receiving, or passing). Interceptions or fumbles lost cost you 3 points, while a fumble that is recovered by the player’s team is a loss of only 1 point. Bonus points are available for 100-199 yards rushing (2 points), 200 yards rushing or receiving (6 points), 300-399 yards passing (1 point) and 400 yards passing (4 points). There is also a 3 point bonus for clutch scoring, which is a score that results in a lead change in the final two minutes of the 4th quarter or overtime. Kickoff and punt return touchdowns are worth 6 points for the player and kickoff and punt returns are worth 1 point for every 40 yards.

Average Draft Position (ADP) listed is from 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up drafts and was accurate as of the afternoon of July 13th.

A Baker’s Dozen of Tiers

As stated in the QB tiers article, Dynasty Owner tiers are not the same as tiers for other fantasy football leagues or on other fantasy football websites. There are multiple factors to consider in Dynasty Owner including current salary, future salaries, 2021 projected stats and long-term potential. Dynasty Owners also need to have two Starting RBs and two Bench RBs every week. There is also a FLEX position in your Dynasty Owner Starting lineup that can be filled by a RB. As a result, more RBs will be used by Dynasty Owners on a weekly basis than in most fantasy leagues. That’s why we have more tiers and more players listed than in other tiers articles (and even in the Dynasty Owner QB tiers from last week). In fact, we have a baker’s dozen of RB tiers:

  • Tier 1 – High Value Young, but Not Rookie RBs
  • Tier 2 – High Value Rookie RBs
  • Tier 3 – High Value RBs with One Year Left Until They Get Paid
  • Tier 4 – High Production, High Salary Veterans
  • Tier 5a – Mid-Range Salary, Multi-Year Contract Veterans
  • Tier 5b – Mid-Range Salary, One Year Contract Veterans
  • Tier 6 – Young, Cheap Players who Might Start
  • Tier 7a – Low Cost Backups who Could Move from Bench to Starting Lineup
  • Tier 7b – Higher Salary Backups who Could Move from Bench to Starting Lineup
  • Tier 8a – Rookies Worth Owning and Playing in 2021
  • Tier 8b – Rookies Worth Owning to Play in the Future
  • Tier 9a – Good in 2020 and Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year
  • Tier 9b – Not so Good in 2020, but Still Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year
  • Tier 10a – Previously Valuable RBs on One-Year Contracts who Will Help Your Team
  • Tier 10b – Previously Valuable RBs on One-Year Contracts who Might Help Your Team
  • Tier 11 – Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year with Potential
  • Tier 12a – Low Production, Low Salary RBs with Multi-Year Contracts
  • Tier 12b – Lower Production, Higher Salary RBs with Multi-Year Contracts
  • Tier 13 – Rookie Dart Throws

Tier 1 – High Value Young, but Not Rookie RBs

These are the elite RBs for Dynasty Owners to have on their team. They have established themselves as the lead RB on their NFL team and should shoulder the load at RB for the next several years. Not only that, but they are doing it on a rookie contract that has at least two years remaining, so your Dynasty Owner team should be able to rely on them for two or three seasons until they get a new contract. In order from lowest (aka Best) Dynasty Dollars per Point (DD/PT) to highest, they are:

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Myles Gaskin, MIA$651,6942224.4$2,904
David Montgomery, CHI$1,003,8452266.0$3,774
James Robinson, JAC$763,3332196.8$3,879
Antonio Gibson, WAS$1,233,1593271.0$4,550
J.K. Dobbins, BAL$1,432,3593269.7$5,311
Miles Sanders, PHI$1,337,5442247.9$5,395
Cam Akers, LA$1,543,2583277.2$5,567
Jonathan Taylor, IND$1,957,2873314.9$6,216
D’Andre Swift, DET$2,134,7283276.8$7,712
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, KC$2,705,3933277.8$9,739

As a result, eight out of ten of them are going in the first three rounds of Dynasty Owner start-up drafts in 2021 (ADPs of 36.0 or less). The two players (Myles Gaskin and James Robinson) with the lowest salaries and projected to have the fewest Dynasty Owner fantasy points are the exceptions and they are probably the least secure in their hold on the lead RB job for their NFL team. However, they have two of the lowest DD/PT projections for 2021 since both of them have salaries of under $1 million, so they are projected to be among the most valuable players in Dynasty Owner.

For the most part, the value for these players goes down as their salaries increase. Most of them are projected to score roughly the same number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Interestingly, the player with the worst DD/PT (Clyde Edwards-Helaire) was drafted earlier than the rest of the players in this tier in 2020 Dynasty Owner drafts.

Tier 2 – High Value Rookie RBs

All of these RBs are just a step below Tier 1 simply because they are rookies and have yet to prove themselves in the NFL. Last year, Clyde Edwards-Helaire was drafted as early or earlier than some non-rookie RBs. He didn’t live up to the hype, finishing as RB21 after being drafted in the first round on average (ADP 9.2). To avoid repeating the same mistake, these four rookies get their own Tier.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Trey Sermon, SF$1,218,2334189.8$6,419
Najee Harris, PIT$3,261,8624279.9$11,654
Javonte Williams, DEN$2,216,4384182.1$12,172
Travis Etienne, JAC$3,224,5264226.5$14,236

Najae Harris could be this year’s Edwards-Helaire as he was the first RB taken in the NFL draft and is projected to be the RB9 with 279.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points, but is being drafted in the upper half of the first round with an ADP of 3.7.

On the other hand, we have Trey Sermon who wasn’t drafted by San Francisco 49ers until the third round of the NFL draft, but is going in the fourth round of Dynasty Owner start-up drafts and has a projected DD/PT of over $5,000 less than Harris. His 2021 projected DD/PT of $6,419 is comparable to that of the consensus top pick in 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up drafts (Jonathan Taylor at $6,216 DD/PT).

Tier 3 – High Value RBs with One Year Left Until They Get Paid

Both of these RBs would be in Tier 1 if it weren’t for the fact that they both have only one year left on their very affordable rookie contracts and should get paid in 2022. They have similar salaries, projected Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and projected value, but the “1” in the Years column pushes them down a couple of tiers.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Chase Edmonds, ARI$728,0901197.0$3,696
Nick Chubb, CLE$1,845,7741288.9$6,389

Both Edmonds and Chubb will get paid just like the RBs in the next tier (Tier 4) if they play well, or end up settling for significantly less if they don’t, like the RBs in Tier 10a.

Tier 4 – High Production, High Salary Veterans

Here are the seven highest paid RBs in the NFL. All of them have at least three years left on their contracts that cost their Dynasty Owners at least $12 million per season. While all of them are going to cost you a lot in salary, they should provide plenty of Dynasty Owner fantasy points in return for that salary (barring injury). Joe Mixon is projected to be RB17 and with the Dynasty Owner fewest points at 267.3, but he is also tied for the lowest salary here with Aaron Jones at $12 million. At the opposite end, Christian McCaffrey is projected to be the RB1 in terms of scoring with 371.3 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. He is also the highest paid RB at $16.016 million for the next five years.  

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Dalvin Cook, MIN$12,600,0005334.3$37,691
Christian McCaffrey, CAR$16,015,8755371.3$43,135
Aaron Jones, GB$12,000,0004276.8$43,353
Derrick Henry, TEN$12,500,0003280.1$44,627
Joe Mixon, CIN$12,000,0004267.3$44,893
Ezekiel Elliott, DAL$15,000,0006319.7$46,919
Alvin Kamara, NO$15,000,0005319.7$46,919

In terms of DD/PT, they are all within $10,000 of each other. Dalvin Cook has the best projected 2021 DD/PT at $37,691, while Ezekiel Elliott and Alvin Kamara have identical projections of 319.7 Dynasty Owner fantasy points for $15 million in salary ($46,919 DD/PT for 2021). The only difference between those two guys is that Elliott has one extra year on his contract.

Though it’s not listed here, you’re going to need to draft these guys early in order to get one of them. Three of them (McCaffrey, Cook and Kamara have first round average ADPs of 3.0, 5.0 and 10.3 respectively). Henry and Elliott have second round ADPs (16.3 for Henry and 19.1 for Elliott), while Jones and Mixon are pretty tied at the hip with identical salaries, near identical projections and the highest ADPs in this tier at 34.5 and 39.9 respectively.

Tier 5a – Mid-Range Salary, Multi-Year Contract Veterans

All of these players have better value than the veterans in Tier 4, but are just one tier lower because they aren’t projected to score as many Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Everyone in this tier has a salary of at least $2.5 million, but that’s a lot less than the Tier 4 RBs. Also, none are signed for longer than three years, so they won’t be a drain on your salary cap for seasons to come if an injury occurs. All five of them are projected as Top 25 scoring RBs in 2021, and could do better than that and be even more valuable.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Josh Jacobs, LV$2,983,3502247.6$12,049
Mike Davis, ATL$2,750,0002207.0$13,285
Austin Ekeler, LAC$6,125,0003279.3$21,930
Chris Carson, SEA$5,212,5002223.6$23,312
Kareem Hunt, CLE$6,000,0002215.1$27,894

Tier 5b – Mid-Range Salary, One Year Contract Veterans

Another “b” tier with a set of RBs who are on mid-range, one-year deals of between $5 million and $8 million. All of them could be on the move after the 2021 season to greener pastures.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Saquon Barkley, NYG$7,798,6881284.1$27,451
David Johnson, HOU$5,000,0001173.7$28,785
Melvin Gordon, DEN$8,000,0001170.8$46,838

While Saquon Barkley is several years younger and projected to score over 100.0 more Dynasty Owner fantasy points than either Johnson or Gordon, he’s also coming off an injury that cost him almost all of the 2020 season. He didn’t really fit into another Tier though due to salary (too low for Tier 4 and too much high for Tier 3), contract length (not multi-year for Tier 5a), so he’s here.

Tier 6 – Young, Cheap Players who Might Start

Here are a bunch of players who might be the starter for their NFL team when the 2021 season starts. There are at least two players listed for two of these teams, all of whom coincidentally play in the AFC East.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Devin Singletary, BUF$974,5002177.5$5,490
Damien Harris, NE$907,7842143.2$6,339
Zack Moss, BUF$1,153,0793169.4$6,807
Ty Johnson, NYJ$672,976280.3$8,381
La’Mical Perine, NYJ$1,010,086394.5$10,689
Tevin Coleman, NYJ$1,100,0001101.3$10,859

The Buffalo combination of Devin Singletary and Zack Moss are both projected to score roughly the same number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and have similar value. Moss is slightly less valuable as he has a higher salary than Singletary. As a testament to how close they are viewed, their ADPs are virtually identical (Moss – 97.0 vs. Singletary – 97.3).

Damien Harris is listed here, due to Bill Belichick’s propensity to be unpredictable with his RB usage, even though he should be the likely starter in New England. Harris also is similar to the Buffalo tandem of Singletary and Moss in terms of salary, 2021 projections, 2021 value and 2021 start-up draft ADP (92.7) and he also has multiple years left on his rookie contract. If Harris didn’t go in this tier, a separate tier might have needed to be created for him.

There are three young, non-rookies competing to be the starter for the New York Jets. They are competing with rookie Michael Carter who appears later on in Tier 8a. Each is different as they have varying number of years left on their contracts and anticipated Dynasty Owner fantasy points for 2021. Ty Johnson is projected as the best value due to his $672,976 salary, even though he is supposed to score the fewest number of points of the trio.

Tier 7a – Low Cost Backups who Could Move from Bench to Starting Lineup

This tier is comprised of players who are clearly backups on their current NFL team and worthy of a spot on your Dynasty Owner Bench on a weekly basis. They are great handcuffs and Bench players right now, as well as worthy of being elevated to your Starting lineup if the RB ahead of them suffers an injury and can’t play for a week (or longer).

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Tony Pollard, DAL$796,9452133.7$5,961
Darrell Henderson, LA$1,053,0012126.0$8,357
A.J. Dillon, GB$1,321,4583156.4$8,449
Alexander Mattison, MIN$867,7932100.9$8,601
Darrynton Evans, TEN$1,140,447384.2$13,545

Except for Darrell Henderson, all of these RBs are behind highly paid starting RBs in Tier 4. In terms of value, they are roughly as valuable as RBs in earlier tiers, but in order to maximize their value, they need an injury to the starting RB ahead of them. They are all roughly being taken in the first twelve rounds of Dynasty Owner start-up drafts, except for Darrynton Evans who has an ADP of 209.1 and the highest DD/PT of the RBs in this tier.

Tier 7b – Higher Salary Backups who Could Move from Bench to Starting Lineup

This tier, which is comprised of only two RBs, is similar to a few QB tiers that had only two players. The higher salaries that these two backups command puts both of them just a little bit lower than the players in Tier 7a. Both of them will be on their NFL team for multiple years as even though Gus Edwards is on a one year deal, he recently signed a two-year extension to stay in Baltimore through the 2023 season.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Gus Edwards, BAL$3,384,0001121.1$27,944
Latavius Murray, NO$3,600,0002118.9$30,278

Check out the similarities between Edwards and Murray. Their current salary, 2021 projected points and 2021 DD/PT are virtually identical. Edwards is five years younger than Murray (26 vs. 31), but even with the age difference, they have very similar ADPs right now (154.1 for Edwards and 157.4 for Murray).

Tier 8a – Rookies Worth Owning and Playing in 2021

There were quite a few rookie RBs drafted in the 2021 NFL draft. Due to his unique situation with the 49ers, Trey Sermon jumped into Tier 2, even though he was drafted in the 3rd round. These 4th or 5th round picks are listed as Tier 8a. All three are expected to play a significant role in 2021, but are not looking like the main guy (at least this season).

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Michael Carter, NYJ$1,071,8424153.2$6,996
Kenneth Gainwell, PHI$953,8824126.6$7,535
Chuba Hubbard, CAR$1,048,2944111.4$9,410

Tier 8b – Rookies Worth Owning to Play in the Future

These RBs were also drafted in the middle (4th) to end (7th) of the 2021 NFL draft. While all of them are expected to play some this season, none should be counted on to help your Dynasty Owner team until later on in their careers.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Jermar Jefferson, DET$889,581476.4$11,644
Kylin Hill, GB$889,766468.9$12,914
Rhamondre Stevenson, NE$1,057,264481.6$12,957
Demetric Felton, CLE$910,285466.3$13,730
Khalil Herbert, CHI$902,677457.0$15,836

Each one sits behind another young, but more established RB (or two) which limits their potential for 2021, but when those established RBs are eligible for a big contract or an injury comes, these RBs might be in for more work.

Tier 9a – Good in 2020 and Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year

These players all share three traits. They played well in 2020 and they have one year remaining on a contract that pays them less than $1 million.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Nyheim Hines, IND$796,1371150.8$5,279
Salvon Ahmed, MIA$695,0001101.2$6,868
Boston Scott, PHI$920,0001108.7$8,464
Jerick McKinnon, KC$990,0001102.8$9,630
Wayne Gallman, SF$990,000182.1$12,058

Tier 9b – Not so Good in 2020, but Still Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year

Same contract duration and salary as Tier 9a for these three guys and they are in the same range in terms of projected 2021 DD/PT, it’s just they weren’t as productive in 2020, so they rank a little bit lower.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Justin Jackson, LAC$570,000169.1$8,249
Royce Freeman, DEN$985,005185.4$11,534
Jordan Wilkins, IND$675,310154.9$12,301

Tier 10a – Previously Valuable RBs on One-Year Contracts who Will Help Your Team

We have two RBs here who have been valuable in the past, but signed low-salary, one-year contracts this off-season. These guys are betting on themselves and are likely to be more expensive next year if their bet pays off and they have a good season in 2021.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
James Conner, ARI$1,750,0001176.1$9,938
Leonard Fournette, TB$3,250,0001182.1$17,847

Fournette is almost twice as expensive as Conner and although both are projected to have roughly the same number of Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021, Fournette is being drafted about two rounds ahead of Conner (88.7 ADP for Fournette vs. 111.5 ADP for Conner) since he is the likely starter in Tampa Bay, while Conner is expected to share time with Chase Edmonds in Arizona. Both are a shade better than the players in the next tier (10b) due to past production and age (both are still only 26 years of age).

Tier 10b – Previously Valuable RBs on One-Year Contracts who Might Help Your Team

We have a much larger list of RBs here who have been valuable in the past, and have a one-year contract, so they might help your Dynasty Owner team in 2021. No guarantees here at this tier as everyone has a reason why they are on a one-year deal at this point in their careers.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Ronald Jones, TB$1,767,9771178.4$9,910
Giovani Bernard, TB$1,212,5001104.7$11,581
J.D. McKissic, WAS$1,635,0001136.9$11,943
Darrel Williams, KC$1,600,0001112.6$14,210
Raheem Mostert, SF$2,900,0001186.4$15,558
Kerryon Johnson, PHI$1,625,923184.5$19,242
James White, NE$2,462,5001116.5$21,137
Matt Breida, BUF$1,055,000148.6$21,708
Phillip Lindsay, HOU$3,250,0001134.9$24,092
Malcolm Brown, MIA$1,750,000161.6$28,409
Marlon Mack, IND$2,000,000170.4$28,409
Mark Ingram, HOU$2,500,000150.0$50,000
Cordarrelle Patterson, ATL$3,000,000157.8$51,903

Several of these players are mostly third down RBs at this point (Giovani Bernard, J.D. McKissic, Darrel Williams and James White) who benefit from Dynasty Owner having a full point per reception (PPR) scoring system. Both Jones and Johnson are still young and in the final year of their rookie contract, but need to prove themselves.

Tier 11 – Under One Million in Salary for Only One More Year with Potential

Another step below the Tier 10a and 10b RBs are these six players who have salaries under $1 million for 2021, so Dynasty Owners can’t be blamed for taking a shot that they will produce more Dynasty Owner fantasy points than they are projected for in 2021. However, they are Practice Squad only unless something changes between now and the first week of the season.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Dare Ogunbowale, JAC$850,000141.2$20,631
Kalen Ballage, PIT$920,000144.0$20,909
Jaylen Samuels, PIT$679,517125.8$26,338
Brian Hill, TEN$990,000137.3$26,542
Corey Clement, NYG$990,000121.8$45,413
Jordan Howard, PHI$990,00010.0N/A

Tier 12a – Low Production, Low Salary RBs with Multi-Year Contracts

All of the players in this tier are projected to score less than 100.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2021 and none has a salary of over $2 million per season. Unlike the RBs in Tiers 9a through 11, these guys all have two or three years left on their contracts.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Joshua Kelley, LAC$1,018,835387.4$11,657
DeeJay Dallas, SEA$947,350365.3$14,508
Anthony McFarland, PIT$1,004,357366.0$15,218
Benny Snell, PIT$805,517240.6$19,840
Samaje Perine, CIN$1,650,000280.3$20,548
Ke’Shawn Vaughn, TB$1,188,999355.4$21,462
Justice Hill, BAL$815,414231.5$25,886
Mike Boone, DEN$1,925,000269.5$27,698
Darwin Thompson, KC$661,960214.7$45,031
Travis Homer, SEA$665,704214.3$46,553
J.J. Taylor, NE$695,00028.7$79,885

Tier 12b – Lower Production, Higher Salary RBs with Multi-Year Contracts

Same as Tier 12a, but with salaries of more than $2 million per season for two years, except Tarik Cohen who just signed his three year, $5.75 million contract. Any of them could be the primary backup and produce better than anticipated, but it’ll cost Dynasty Owners a lot of salary to find out.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Jamaal Williams, DET$3,000,0002129.8$23,112
Sony Michel, NE$2,406,674299.2$24,261
Rashaad Penny, SEA$2,691,3602101.4$26,542
Carlos Hyde, JAC$2,250,000274.6$30,161
Devontae Booker, NYG$2,750,000288.1$31,215
Kenyan Drake, LV$5,500,0002148.0$37,162
Tarik Cohen, CHI$5,750,0003120.8$47,599

Tier 13 – Rookies Dart Throws

Most of these guys were drafted, but none are anticipated to make a splash in 2021 and some may not even survive training camp and make the roster for Week 1. Because of that and since all of them have three or four years on their contracts, they might end up taking up Practice Squad room on your team or need to be dropped and pay the 25% drop fee, which will range from around $600,000 to $1 million Dynasty Dollars.

PlayerYearly SalaryYears2021 Projected Points2021 DD/PT
Jaret Patterson, WAS$808,333336.7$22,025
Chris Evans, CIN$913,222437.2$24,549
Gary Brightwell, NYG$914,718433.9$26,983
Larry Rountree, LAC$913,940423.2$39,394
Javian Hawkins, ATL$810,000319.4$41,753
Kene Nwangwu, MIN$1,058,200423.2$45,612
Pooka Williams, CIN$808,333310.3$78,479
Jake Funk, LA$897,05748.7$103,110
Gerrid Doaks, MIA$894,02543.5$255,436
Caleb Huntley, ATL$808,33330.0N/A
Elijah Mitchell, SF$915,89240.0N/A

Two players from Atlanta and Cincinnati made this list and it’s unlikely both make the roster and produce. Pick wisely if you draft one of them or pick them up off the Free Agent Auction. They could be the 2021 version of James Robinson, or the 2021 version of Eno Benjamin (Arizona’s 7th round draft pick in 2020 who spent all season as a healthy scratch).

Conclusion

There are so many RBs listed, and the fact is that there are ones who will end up being productive who aren’t listed even here. The article and video would be even longer if we listed or tried to talk about every RB who might end up helping your Dynasty Owner team in 2021. There’s going to be a lightly regarded player heading into 2021 who will finish as a Top 25 RB. That’s what happened last year with Mike Davis (RB12 in 2020, but ADP of 263.1 and only drafted in 7% of 2020 Dynasty Owner leagues) or J.D. McKissic (RB19 in 2020, but ADP of 236.7 and only drafted in 24% of 2020 Dynasty Owner leagues). We’d have to list every RB on a NFL roster right now to find all of those diamonds in the rough.

Two more sets of tiers to come for the receivers (WR and TE) for the final two weeks of July. Let me know what you think of these RB tiers on Twitter (@SteveVT33) or in the comments section on YouTube.

In addition to more tiers, Dynasty Owner has other great content to help you draft your dynasty. We can also provide guidance as you continue to tweak your roster after your rookie or start-up draft is over so you can win your league. My articles and videos to get you ready for your 2021 Dynasty Owner start-up league team are being released on Wednesdays. Keep an eye out for new articles from the rest of our team of Dynasty Owner writers as well. Matt Morrison – The Jerk (@Dynastyjerk) is doing a deep dive on individual teams that you can check out on Mondays, while Jay Pounds (@jaypoundsnfl) looks at how to rebuild your Dynasty Owner roster on Fridays. All of the articles will be released at 1 PM (Eastern) with videos and podcast released at 3 PM (Eastern).

Please read all of their articles and follow all three of us plus Dynasty Owner (@Dynasty_Owner) on Twitter. Hopefully this article is helpful for everyone who has a 2021 start-up draft coming soon, and at least interesting for those of you who have already drafted or have an established team. Maybe it’ll give you and other Dynasty Owners some ideas for potential trades too. Thanks, and have a great day!

Steven Van Tassell is the Head of Content for Dynasty Owner

Follow us on Twitter: @SteveVT33 and @Dynasty_Owner

Contract Breakdown: Chicago Bears

By Matt Morrison (@dynastyjerk)

As I started in my previous article, today we are going to continue with the NFC North.  I laid out the division last week, and did a mini breakdown of each team and how they finished last year.  I didn’t include the chart of their finishes though so here it is…

 RecordSeason Outcome
Packers13-3Eliminated, Conference
Bears8-8Eliminated, Wild Card
Vikings7-9Eliminated, Regular Season
Lions5-11Eliminated, Regular Season

The Bears finished second in the division with an 8-8 record.  Their lukewarm success was mainly based on their defensive efficiency.  The Bears ranked in the top half of least total yards and points allowed on defense.  Their quarterback play was shaky at best, and most people would call it below average.  Today, we are going to break down a couple of players from the Bears and use our value rating, Dynasty Dollars per Point (DD/PT), to assist us.

Contract Breakdowns

As much as I would like to talk about Justin Fields in this breakdown, the truth is that I would be basing it on massive speculation.  Not only do we not know when/if he is going to play this season, but then we would have to predict how productive he would be in those games.  Therefore, I’m going to center these two breakdowns around established NFL players that have a large sample size of production.  First, let’s talk about David Montgomery.

If I asked you where Monty finished in DO last season, do you think you’d be able to guess?  I had a guess, and it wasn’t even close.  My guess was RB9.  He actually finished as RB4!  That’s right, he was the fourth most productive running back in 2020.  While he was actually very consistent throughout the entire season, he finished on an absolute tear.  Here are his final six games…

 CarriesReceptionsTotal YardsTDsFantasy Points
Week 12 (GB)115143127.3
Week 13 (DET)174111227.1
Week 14 (HOU)113155126.5
Week 15 (MIN)321162231.2
Week 16 (JAC)232121120.1
Week 17 (GB)229132128.2

That is one incredible ending to a season, and one that I somewhat predicted in my “League Winners and Playoff Predictions” article near the end of last season.  I made a bold prediction that Montgomery would finish the season with…

52 rushes – 285 total yards – 4 touchdowns

He blew those numbers away.  But equally impressive is how much value he provided on a season long basis.  When we talk about DD/PT, we are using a metric to try and define how “valuable” a player is.  It is used to show how efficient a player is when you compare them to their salary.  Montgomery finished behind only one running back in terms of DD/PT for the 2020 season.  His name is James Robinson.  Here is how Montgomery compares to his peers (there aren’t many).

 Salary/YearTotal FPsDD/FP
James Robinson$763,333259.4$2,943
David Montgomery$1,003,845269.8$3,721
Nyheim Hines$796,137203.6$3,910
Myles Gaskin$651,694162.2$4,018
Chase Edmonds$728,090176.8$4,118

(2020 stats)

There are a few things I notice right off the bat.  First, Monty not only had the most fantasy points of anyone in this list, but he also had the highest salary.  You may say, “well yeah, but those numbers are so close together that it is pretty much negligible.”  I wouldn’t disagree with that statement in terms of actual monetary value.  However, when you look at the percentage of these salaries when compared to each other, that is where it gets impressive.  For example…

David Montgomery makes $352,151 more than Myles Gaskin.  This is not a large chunk of money in terms of Dynasty Owner.  (It is 0.28 percent of the salary cap)  What it also means is that Gaskin makes 65% of what Monty does.  In order for Montgomery to have more value than Gaskin, he had to produce 249.8 fantasy points in 2020.  We can see from above that he ended with 269.8.  I do realize that Gaskin missed a big chunk of the season, but he was also very productive in the games that he played in.  The point is that Monty was an extreme value in 2020.  He was close to the most valuable running back overall.  So, the question is…”do I expect it to continue?”

I expect Montgomery to continue to be one of the most valuable running backs in 2021, yes.  What I don’t expect is that he will be as valuable.  One thing I conveniently forgot to mention is that Tarik Cohen played in less than three games last year.  He tore his ACL in Week 3 and did not return for the season.  Cohen will without a doubt take touches away from Montgomery (especially receptions).  This combined with the quarterback uncertainty in Chicago makes me hesitate on placing Montgomery in the top tier of value for the next couple of years.  Would I be happy to draft him in the third round?  Yes, I would, but as you can see from my running back rankings article a few weeks ago (https://dynastyowner.com/2021/06/contract-breakdown-running-back-top-10/), he is not in my Top 10 for value over the next three to four seasons.

The second and final player I want to quickly mention is Allen Robinson.  I talked about him last week as we know that he signed his franchise tag earlier this offseason.  His tag is worth $17,880,000 for a single year.  This makes him the ninth most expensive wide receiver on a yearly basis.  Here is how his peers compare to him…

 Salary/YearTotal FPsDD/FP
Mike Evans$16,500,000248.6$66,372
Robert Woods$16,250,000243$66,872
Allen Robinson$17,880,000262.9$68,011
Brandin Cooks$16,200,000232$69,828
Cooper Kupp$15,750,000207.3$75,977

(2020 stats)

***Full Disclosure:  Some of these players’ contracts have increased since the 2020 season.  Their DD/PT were actually different in the 2020 season as it was happening.  For my example, using these numbers do work though.  We are just using their 2020 stats compared to their current salaries.***

Robinson has a higher salary and more fantasy points in 2020 than any other player on this list.  That being said, they are all in the same ballpark for value.  Who on this list would you rather have?  If it were my pick, it would probably be Robinson.  Not only does he have the highest potential of any year, but he should see the most volume of any player on this list.  Robinson does not have a cheap enough salary to be a Top 10 value wide receiver, but there is no doubt he will be ranked as a Top 20 value wide receiver.

That concludes another article.  Thank you for tuning in and reading.  Message me on Twitter (@dynastyjerk) and let me know if you have any questions or concerns.  I would appreciate it if you followed @Dynasty_Owner on Twitter as well as subscribed to Dynasty Owner on YouTube.  Thank you all.  Take care and be safe. TheJerk

Buy, Sell, and Hold – AFC North Edition

By: Jay Pounds (@JayPoundsNFL)

The NFL Hall of Fame Game is less than one month away and at last we will have football again. As we start inching closer towards the actual NFL season, I wanted to switch things up a bit and do something geared towards covering all the Dynasty Owner relevant players from a rebuilding standpoint. Each week, I will break down the players of each division down into three separate categories that you hear quite often in the fantasy community, which is buy, sell, and hold. I will also give you a brief explanation on why each player is in the category you will find them in. I did intentionally leave some players off of the list because they are just too far away from helping your roster at this point, so I see them as basically wasting one of your precious roster spots. When buying, selling, or holding players in a rebuild you want to look for certain things such as age, production, contract, contract length, and the overall situation the player is in.

Before we get too far into things let’s talk about what each category is, so you have a better understanding of things. The players in the buy category are almost always going to be young, on a good contract, or rookies. You will also need to factor in things like draft capital, path to playing time, and talent when buying as well. You will want to hold numerous players during your rebuild and usually that is because many players in the league are waiting their turn, or may be in a bad situation, thus hurting their trade value. When is it time to sell in Dynasty Owner? It is a question that I will never have an exact answer to but the way I maneuver around it is to trade them a year or two early if I am just entering a rebuilding situation. It gets to be trickier if the rebuild is not lightning fast. I am sure most of you already know this, but every single rebuild is going to be different, which is why I want to give Dynasty Owners a much broader look into what you should be doing with your players moving forward. I am going to cut the intros for this series of articles short because they may get a little lengthy and I never want to bore any of our great Dynasty Owners. All players listed are in no particular order.

Buy

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Chase Claypool – 3 years, $1,654,156

Mr. Chase Claypool exploded on the scene in 2020 as a rookie and I look for that to continue into 2021. He came into the league as a raw prospect, and I’ve heard that’s because of the lack of football camps in Canada. If this has any truth Claypool may have an unlimited ceiling in the NFL. The concerns for the offense Claypool plays in are big time to most owners, lowering his cost some. The Steelers offensive line is a huge question mark, not to mention the aging quarterback situation.

  • Diontae Johnson – 2 years, $1,070,241

The target monster Dionte Johnson is another buy in the Pittsburgh offense. In 2020, Johnson soaked up 88 receptions for just 924 yards. During his time in the league Johnson has improved each year and I expect more of the same in 2021. Like Chase Claypool, Johnson has similar concerns on the offense he plays with in Pittsburgh, but talent wins out here. If you’re a rebuilding owner and trust the Steelers’ organization, Johnson is a must buy.

  • Najee Harris – 4 years, $3,261,862

I know, I know, I always say if you’re going into a rebuild don’t buy running backs, but I am biased on this one with him being a Steeler. Hey at least I can admit it! In the NFL, running backs are most valuable coming into the league, especially as 1st round pick. The Steelers want to get back to Steeler football and Harris is the perfect guy for the job.

  • Pat Freiermuth – 4 years, $1,507,045

If Kyle Pitts wasn’t a rookie in the NFL draft the same time as Pat Freiermuth, Freiermuth may have went in the late 1st round of fantasy rookie drafts, but the Pitts hype killed any type of Freiermuth hope. Freiermuth is an extremely solid tight end who has the tools to excel in the passing game. I see Freiermuth as a Heath Miller type tight end in the NFL.

Cleveland Browns

  • Donavon Peoples-Jones – 3 years, $870,402

In my opinion, Donavon Peoples-Jones is the prototypical buy candidate for rebuilding owners. What I mean by this is that he flashed big time potential during his rookie season yet instead of his team giving him a larger role and letting Higgins walk, they buried Peoples-Jones. The Browns brought back Hollywood Higgins, as well as drafted the guy we will talk about next.

  • Anthony Schwartz – 4 years, $1,215,755

The Browns selected Schwartz with the 91st pick in the 3rd round of the NFL draft. Schwartz was a 3rd round pick in Dynasty Owner rookie drafts (ADP 30.9) and will likely be very cheap to acquire if you are looking to add him to your roster. I know track speed gets thrown around in the NFL a lot, but Schwartz is a guy with just that.

  • Harrison Bryant – 3 years, $1,016,007

At this point you should be able to get Harrison Bryant for next to nothing. The Browns for some reason have yet to deal David Njoku and it will likely affect any shot that Bryant had at a somewhat relevant fantasy season. If I read it correctly, the Browns have several outs in Hooper’s contract meaning Bryant could be the team’s TE1 after this season.

Baltimore Ravens

  • Rashod Bateman – 4 years, $3,149,853

Another rookie on the buy list is late 1st round NFL draft pick Rashod Bateman. Bateman landed where everyone expected him to go in the pre-draft process, yet he was a fade after the draft. If I am a rebuilding owner and a player with 1stt round draft capital is seeing hate in the community, I am going to be all over him 9 times out of 10. If Lamar Jackson takes a step forward in the passing game, Bateman will be a steal.

  • J.K. Dobbins – 3 years, $1,432,359

I put J.K. Dobbins on the buy list because Baltimore used him lightly last season and are not likely to overwork him in 2021 either. The Gus Edwards re-signing was very frustrating for many Dobbins owners but at the end of the day, this move could give his career extra longevity. After all, Dobbins is on one of the best rushing offenses in football.

  • Mark Andrews – 1 year, $863,290

I talked about Mark Andrews as a buy for contenders last week and he is one of the rare players I would encourage rebuilding owners to buy as well. Andrews is going to get a new contract next season but as a rebuilding owner you should have plenty of space because you have cap flexibility. As we saw in 2020, the tight end position was a wasteland, so secure a top level one when you can. Andrews is still young and playing on a rookie deal, so he should still have plenty of production left when it’s time for you to compete.

  • Trace McSorley – 2 years, $670,172

Trace McSorley as a buy may be the strangest thing you hear all off-season but hear me out. Lamar Jackson is a rushing quarterback who sees a ton of contact week in and week out, yet he’s stayed very healthy. At some point the injury bug will hit Jackson for an extended stretch and a rebuilding owner with McSorley may as well be holding a gold mine at that point.

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Ja’Marr Chase – 4 years, $7,547,410

Ja’Marr Chase, like Kyle Pitts is another generational talent coming into the NFL, only he’s an actual wide receiver while Pitts is disguised as one. Chase and Joe Burrow will reunite on the football field once again and all they did the last time they played together was shatter every record known to college football. As the Dynasty Nerds always say, “An overpay today will be a underpay tomorrow”.

  • Tee Higgins – 3 years, $2,171,696

In 2020, Tee Higgins had an excellent rookie season with 67 catches, 908 yards, and 6 touchdowns, despite Joe Burrow missing significant time. Although Higgins excelled last season you should be able to get him cheaper than you think with the Bengals drafting Chase this off-season.

  • Chris Evans – 4 years, $913,222

Over the past what seems like 40 years we have seen Giovani Bernard be a productive role player in the Bengals’ backfield. Fast-forward and Bernard is no longer with the organization many thought he would retire from, leaving his spot wide open for whoever wants it the most. The Bengals have come out and said they want Joe Mixon on the field 80% of the time but I just don’t see that happening. The Bengals do have Samaje Perine, but I think talent wins out easily here. Buy Evans before he has a great camp and preseason.

  • Joe Burrow – 3 years, $9,047,534

I will probably say this a million more times, productive rookie quarterbacks are gold in Dynasty Owner. Joe Burrow was having a solid statistical season in 2020 before he went down with a season ending knee injury, which will help lower his value in a trade. If you are going to target Burrow, I highly recommend doing it before he’s back balling out.

Hold

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • James Washington – 1 year, $1,125,336

In his time in the NFL, James Washington has flashed potential of being a low level WR2, but the Steelers rarely miss on the receivers they draft, and it has left Washington on the outside looking in. With only one year remaining on his deal, he is definitely worth holding onto to see how things play out as he will net next to nothing in a trade.

  • Kalen Ballage – 1 year, $920,000

In my own opinion, Kalen Ballage is an absolute sell to the owner with Najee Harris. You may be wondering why he’s not in the sell category if that’s how I view him. While that is fair criticism, I have personally tried to trade Ballage twice and both owners view Snell as the backup to Harris over Ballage. I have seen rumors that Snell Is a cut candidate leaving Ballage as the clear next man up. If you have Ballage sit on him and trade him when his role is more clear.

  • Mason Rudolph – 1 year, $980,472

I completely agree with what Steve Van Tassell said in his article about how Mason Rudolph is worth holding onto in 2021 (https://dynastyowner.com/2021/07/dynasty-owner-qb-tiers/). Rudolph is in an offense he should know inside and out by now and he may even be the better choice at quarterback on the roster by the end of 2021. Big Ben declined immensely at the end of last season, if it happens again and Rudolph can hold off Haskins, he will have solid trade value.

  • Dwayne Haskins – 1 year, $850,000

As we are doing with Mason Rudolph, we’re doing the same with Dwayne Haskins. Haskins is a former first round pick out of Ohio State and has loads of talent that has yet to translate in the NFL. If Haskins learns how to be a real professional in Pittsburgh, he could finally show everyone why the Football Team drafted him with the 15th overall pick in the 2019 NFL draft.

Cleveland Browns

  • Rashard Higgins – 1 year, $2,377,500

I’m not too sure anyone had a more disappointing off season than the two fringe starting receivers in Cleveland. Rashard Higgins, like Donovan Peoples-Jones seemingly got shafted this offseason when the Browns brought him back yet drafted another receiver (Anthony Schwartz) in the 3rd round of the NFL draft. The way the offense looked after OBJ went down, I thought it was a possibility Cleveland would trade him opening up roles for both Higgins and Peoples-Jones. At this point hold Higgins and hope he goes elsewhere next year.

  • David Njoku – 1 year, $6,013,000

The David Njoku experiment is here for another possible year in Cleveland. It seems Njoku has been wanting out of Cleveland since being drafted and I can’t say I disagree with it; with the way he has been used and the number of changes he’s dealt with in the coaching staff and front office. He’s also watched the team that drafted him in the 1st round sign another player at his position to a record setting deal at the time in Austin Hooper. Njoku is worth a hold at least until we see him fail with another franchise.

  • Odell Beckham Jr. – 3 years, $18,000,000

Odell Beckham Jr. is still a phenomenal NFL talent but in my opinion, he is not a phenomenal Dynasty Owner talent. If you are a rebuilding owner and you can find someone to take on OBJ’s contract for anything of value in return I probably would. While it is possible OBJ returns to form and raises his value, so I will say if you still have him at this point then hold him for the rest of the season. If he ends up having another frustrating season you can use an Amnesty Provision on him at any point.

  • Austin Hooper – 3 years, $10,500,000

Austin Hooper underwhelmed significantly in 2020, only producing 46 catches, 435 yards, and 4 touchdowns. That’s certainly not what the Browns were expecting when they signed him. While you may be able to get a little something out of Hooper now, I would prefer going the patient route, waiting to see how he performs. If Hooper starts to perform, I will ship him out to a contender in a heartbeat.

Baltimore Ravens

  • Marquise Brown – 2 years, $2,946,835

Oh, how quickly things change in the NFL. Going into 2020 Marquise “Hollywood” Brown was one of the hotter names to breakout for the year, I don’t think I need to remind you he underwhelmed quite a bit. In 2020 Brown had only 58 catches, 769 yards, but was able to turn it into 8 touchdowns. Brown is in a run heavy offense that just loaded up with pass catchers this off-season and is worth nothing more than a hold at this point. Brown does have the talent and skills to succeed at this level, it just may not happen in Baltimore like originally planned.

  • Justice Hill – 2 years, $815,414

At some point we will either stop hearing the name Justice Hill or he will blow up into something somewhat useful for Dynasty Owners. I know some may see this as an interesting call holding Hill but with the way the Ravens run their offense, we could see Hill on the field this season. It’s no secret the Ravens will be using both Gus Edwards and J.K. Dobbins often this season, which means if one suffers an injury at some point, Hill will be the next man up. I don’t think Hill will see the amount of carries Edwards or Dobbins would, but we will at least see what he is made of at that point.

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Auden Tate – 1 year, $570,000

Up next we have the Bengals 2020 training camp M.V.P. Auden Tate. Tate had a good amount of hype heading into last season and did absolutely nothing with it. After all the hype surrounding Tate possibly getting in the way of Tee Higgins getting on the field, he had a worse season than fellow teammate Mike Thomas, and I’m not talking about the Saints player. I would hold Tate at this point but wouldn’t blame you at all for dropping him with someone who has more upside.

  • Drew Sample – 2 years, $1,376,574

I remember last season when C.J. Uzomah went down and when he did I for some reason fell in love with Sample picking him up everywhere I could. A year later and I still like Sample as a prospect but don’t have any shares of him now. It seemed Burrow did not target the tight end position much last season and I’m unsure if it’s something that will continue to happen into the future. In 2020, Sample had decent numbers during his first real playing time with 40 catches, 349 yards, and he was able to add a touchdown.

  • Brandon Allen – 1 year, $1,500,000

Brandon Allen is another quarterback Steve Van Tassell raised great points about in his most recent article about QB tiers. Joe Burrow was injured later in the season in 2020 and while he should be back for Week 1, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Bengals were to play it safe and give him an extra couple of weeks. If that happens and you already have Allen on your roster, you will earn a free draft pick from a quarterback needy team.

  • Samaje Perine – 2 years, $1,650,000

As you read earlier in the article, I have Chris Evans as a buy, which can only mean Perine is a hold or sell. I don’t have Perine listed as a sell at the moment because Chris Evans is a rookie. If we have learned anything in the NFL, it’s that late round picks are very risky. Heck all picks are risky. If the other RBs flame out in Cincinnati, you will have some value in Perine to use for a trade. We have also seen that Mixon has some availability concerns which raises the value of whoever his backup is at the start of the year.

Sell

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • JuJu Smith-Schuster – 1 year, $8,000,00

I mentioned JuJu Smith-Schuster in last week’s article as a player a contending team should buy for cheap. We have come full circle to you the fresh rebuilding owner now selling JuJu for cheap (Ish). Do not sell yourself short, JuJu is still a good talent. I heard reports that JuJu turned down a deal with the Chiefs and Ravens to resign with the Steelers for one year and “reset the market in 2022”. JuJu’s words not mine. Whichever way you spin it, Devin Bush hates this guy!

  • Eric Ebron – 1 year, $6,000,000

By measures of the 2020 tight end landscape, Eric Ebron had a pretty good season with 56 catches for 558 yards, and 5 touchdowns. It could be argued that Ebron could be viewed as a hold at just 28 years old but as hyped as he has been in years past, I think it is safe to say we know what Eric Ebron is by now. If you can find a contending owner who will give you draft capital or promising young talent for a boost at tight end, I would take it.

  • Ben Roethlisberger – 1 year, $14,000,000

As dead as everyone thinks Ben Roethlisberger is, he can fetch draft picks in a trade because of his salary. Big Ben did fade at the end of last season, but has had all off-season to recover and should finally have some type of run game again. If you can find a contending owner in need of a second QB for this year’s championship run, I highly suggest getting a deal done. One year of Big Ben or ten potential years of a player yet to be named.

  • Benny Snell – 2 years, $805,517

As I mentioned earlier Benny Snell has been named as a potential cut candidate. If this turns out to be true, he will lose all value barring some type of miracle signing because of injury. I also mentioned earlier that some owners still view Snell as a handcuff to Harris. If I were you, I would be sending Snell offers out to the Harris’ owner A.S.A.P.!

Cleveland Browns

  • Jarvis Landry – 2 years, $15,100,000

Jarvis Landry like Odell Beckham Jr. Is still a great talent in the NFL. The only difference between the two is that Landry had a solid season in 2020. Some may look at him being under 1,000 yards and not want him but if Baker takes a step forward, Landry will see a boost enabling you to move him at that point. Landry has been one of the most consistent receivers in football for many years. Use that to your advantage in trade talks.

  • Nick Chubb – 1 year, $1,845,774

I know it’s crazy to have Nick Chubb in the sell category. I will admit I feel gross every time I tell you guys to sell players like Chubb, Dalvin Cook, or Derrick Henry, but it really is the smart move going into a rebuild. Chubb is Beast Mode 2.0 and a great running back, but he is heading towards his second contract. As vital as Chubb is to the Browns, they will surely pay him so trade Chubb soon before owners start worrying about his next contract. Besides, what contending owner wouldn’t want to pay up for a season of Nick Chubb?

  • Kareem Hunt – 2 years, $6,000,000

I will keep this one short and sweet because everything I talked about with Nick Chubb applies to Kareem Hunt, aside from the Beast Mode 2.0 part. The one thing I will say is if for some reason the Browns don’t bring Chubb back, you will get a full season of Hunt starting in a great rushing offense for $6,000,000.

  • Baker Mayfield – 1 year, $8,170,745

I know this one will upset some of the Baker Mayfield truthers out there, but it needs to be said. I have Baker on the sell list because he is due to get a new contract this coming off season and I just don’t see him being able to carry a franchise the way someone making $30,000,000 plus a year should. At the moment Mayfield has a top tier offensive line, a stout defense, stud receivers, and a top 3 running game week in and week out and has yet to post eye popping numbers in a season, though he was efficient last year. I’m not saying Baker is Joe Flacco but look how much Flacco’s deal hurt the Ravens at the time. If he’s going to live up to a big contract extension then 3,500 yards just won’t cut it.

Baltimore Ravens

  • Sammy Watkins – 1 year, $5,000,000

I think Sammy Watkins has been a sell for rebuilding owners for the last four years now. I’m not sure what you’ll be able to get for Watkins in a trade, but I know something is better than nothing. At $5,000,000, I wouldn’t blame you for holding Watkins but at this stage of his career I’m taking anything I can get for him.

  • Gus Edwards – 1 year, $3,384,000

In one of the more surprising moves this offseason the Baltimore Ravens brought Gus Edwards back despite the presence of one J.K. Dobbins. As rough as the running back position looks right now, I would think you will get good value in return for Edwards. If the Ravens run the ball less with Lamar Jackson, Dobbins and Edwards could see a boost in work.

  • Lamar Jackson – 1 year, $2,367,912

Again, it feels gross to say sell Lamar Jackson, but he is about to get a massive new contract next season. Unless you have planned for Jackson’s new deal in the $40,000,000 range, you should trade him while you still can get maximum value for him. I can see scenarios where you can hold Lamar and get away with it but be careful, it’s a dangerous game.

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Tyler Boyd – 3 years, $10,750,000

While Tyler Boyd can be argued to be a hold, I would suggest moving him now. If you can find an owner high on Boyd, or an owner who thinks the Bengals will throw the ball 700 times, which is highly possible, then move Boyd to them. At Boyd’s salary and length, I’m just looking to move him before Chase blows up.

  • Joe Mixon – 4 years, $12,000,000

Yes, saying trade Joe Mixon feels gross but nowhere near Nick Chubb gross. Mixon has seen plenty of hype over the years and has had two very good seasons during his career, but he is on his second deal, and he is expensive. You can hold Mixon as well but as thin as running back is I would trade him now to avoid him potentially winning a week for you.

Conclusion

There you have it Dynasty Owners. Every fantasy relevant player in the AFC North, along with what to do with them on your roster. If there is a specific division, you would like to see me cover next week feel free to let me know on Twitter. Please remember to check out the YouTube video as well. As always don’t forget to check out Matt’s articles and videos which release on Mondays and Steve’s articles and videos which release on Wednesdays.  As always good luck on your 2021 Chase for the Ring!