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Dynasty Stock Watch: Fantasy News to Monitor (May 3)

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Welcome to the Dynasty Stock Watch, a weekly article where I address the changes in the dynasty fantasy football landscape. This will help us as managers stay current on the most recent headlines, while also allowing us to look at player and team trends to stay ahead of the curve.

 

We have finally made it folks the NFL Draft is over, and with that comes rookie draft season. Many of us will be spending endless hours wondering just who to take and when. FTN has you covered for all of this, check out our Rookie Guide from Jeff Ratcliffe, the Dynasty Big Board by yours truly, and our rankings to help you crush your rookie drafts. As an additional resource, I am going to cover some rookie ADP trends today using Sleepers current rookie draft ADP (12-team superflex). 

The Good 

Josh Downs, WR, Indianapolis Colts

(Current ADP: 2.05)

Josh Downs is an electric playmaker with one of the better releases in the class and plays way bigger than his 5-foot-9, 177-pound frame would elude. He led the class with a 75% contested target win percentage in 2023. He slid to the third round of the draft, where the Colts selected him with the 79th pick. This landing spot is perfect for Downs. The Colts lack a true slot weapon after the departure of Parris Campbell, and Downs played 89% of his snaps from the slot in college (per PFF). Paired with potential franchise quarterback Anthony Richardson, Downs could become a staple of our fantasy leagues for years to come. 

Tank Bigsby, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

(Current ADP: 2.09) 

After producing solid numbers for multiple years at Auburn even with poor offensive line play and a putrid offense, Tank Bigsby was selected with the 88th pick. He has flashed as a runner, showing a great combination of nimble footwork and power. Landing in Jacksonville seems like a meh situation on the surface, but I would argue it is not so bad after all. Doug Pederson and the Eagles have been telling us by their actions and words that they want to supplement third-year running back Travis Etienne. They re-signed JaMycal Hasty and added D’Ernest Johnson all before drafting Bigsby. There is a real potential that this backfield will become an even split of touches weekly, if that is the case, both Bigsby and Etienne could become viable PPR options in 2023 and beyond. 

Cedric Tillman, WR, Cleveland Browns

(Current ADP: 3.04) 

Cedric Tillman broke out in 2021 when he took 64 receptions for 1,081 yards and 12 touchdowns, putting his name on the NFL’s radar. He battled an ankle injury in 2022 that limited his production (37 receptions for 417 yards and 3 touchdowns in six games). He is one of the few larger-framed receivers in this class, which could allow him to become a true X-receiver at the NFL level. Now, the depth chart in Cleveland is what is keeping his value deflated at the moment — he will have to battle with Amari Cooper, Elijah Moore, Donovan Peoples-Jones and David Bell for playing time. Hwever, I think he could emerge as one of the top three in this group by the end of this year. With the Browns wanting to shift to a more pass-heavy attack we should be investing in their passing weapons before they break out. You will have to take the patient approach here, but the payoff could be huge in years to come and at this ADP it’s basically free to take a shot. 

 

The Bad 

Jonathan Mingo, WR, Carolina Panthers

(Current ADP: 2.02)

Jonathan Mingo gained a ton of steam late in the draft process after an impressive combine where he ran a 4.46 40-yard dash and posted a 39.5-inch vertical — impressive considering his size of 6-foot-2, 220 pounds. On the flip side, he never broke 900 yards receiving or 5 touchdowns at Ole Miss in four years, even with no real competition around him. So, we are spending high draft capital while banking on his athleticism versus his production or refinement. Now, he is walking into a fairly open depth chart with only DJ Chark, Adam Thielen, Terrace Marshall and Shi Smith in front of him, so there’s certainly a path for him to carve out a decent role. In the last five years, Frank Reich’s offenses have ranked top-15 in rushing attempts, yards, touchdowns and yards per attempt three times, meaning it will likely be a low-volume passing attack. With this, I am not overly excited about Mingo in a situation much like his at Ole Miss where he failed to produce. 

Devon Achane, RB, Miami Dolphins

(Current ADP: 2.01) 

Landing in Miami is a lovely fit for Devon Achane — he ran mostly a zone-blocking scheme at Texas A&M, and that’s what the Dolphins run at the NFL level. He has a light frame standing only 5-foot-8 and 188 pounds, but he possesses great speed as he ran a 4.32 40-yard dash at the combine. One of his most underrated traits is his incredible smoothness to run between the tackles and his ability as a punt returner.

This backfield is loaded with a ton of players who have struggled to stay on the field and possess similar skill sets as Achane, making me wonder how he separates himself. I do think this becomes a committee backfield that could limit his touches and his overall fantasy upside. The biggest problem, though, is that we just haven’t seen many players who fit his mold become a reliable fantasy asset, so we’re leaning on him becoming an outlier at pick 13? This is too risky for my liking. 

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