In many fantasy leagues, this is the final week of the regular season, and in many of those leagues, these are the final days in which to make a trade. If your league’s trade deadline has already passed, I’ll just say that I think that’s an unnecessary shame. If you’re looking for more of my thoughts on that topic, please check out last week’s column, where I provide some.
This week’s column will be the last in which I dig up trade targets to help teams in re-draft leagues this season. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be offering advice for keeper and dynasty leagues, in terms of players to both buy and sell. But for now, here are some guys for whom it could be worth making last-ditch offers.
If you did read last week’s column just now, and you got to the bottom, you might have noticed that I updated Ahmad Bradshaw’s injury and noted that, while Bradshaw obviously was not a trade target anymore, Dan Herron made for a nice waiver pickup. My argument for both Colts RBs was based on the same brilliant insight — that Trent Richardson is simply not very good at football. Sure enough, Herron outplayed Richardson Sunday, rushing for a 5.4 average in 12 carries, while Richardson did his usual stumbling about, averaging 3.2 yards on 13 carries. Herron also very much replaced Bradshaw in the passing game, catching all five of his targets for an extra 31 yards. There is an obvious cause for concern in Herron’s two lost fumbles, but at the same time, those reduced his fantasy score in most leagues, possibly making him cheaper to acquire. With unthreatening matchups the rest of the way (Redskins, Browns, Texans, Cowboys, Titans) Herron could provide serviceable RB2 production, especially in PPR leagues.
Another player who should be an inexpensive source of solid, if not top-end, production at a relatively thin position. Owners who picked Rudolph up on waivers a couple of weeks ago may be ready to throw him back, considering that his 50-yard effort Sunday came on the heels of a bagel in his first game back from a lengthy injury. That would be your chance, if you need some help at TE, to get someone who is likely to be on the upswing. Not to say that, having gone from zero to 50, Rudolph is a lock for 100 next time out, but he should continue to see an increase in snaps, and thus targets. And some of those future targets figure to come in the red zone, where the Viking has been effective during his young career.
He was mentioned in this space a couple of weeks ago, when Calvin Johnson returned from his ankle woes, and well, it hasn’t gone swimmingly since then. But there is some light at the end of the tunnel, in the form of a much easier-looking schedule ahead than what Stafford and Johnson have just dealt with. After going on the road to face a pair of very tough secondaries in the Cardinals and Patriots, featuring the likes of Patrick Peterson, Antonio Cromartie, Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner, the Lions now get to come home for three straight games. At Ford Field, Stafford should be able to find Megatron, as well as Golden Tate, a little more often against the Bears, Bucs and Vikings. It takes a bit of a leap of faith, but it also shouldn’t cost a whole lot to roll the dice on a QB who has posted big numbers in the past and who now has arguably his best-ever WR duo.
See above, just change the “mentioned in this space” part to last week, and add even higher expectations going forward. The Lions WR has had just one really big week since going off in Week 1 — actually that does feel like a while ago at this point — but does anyone doubt Megatron’s ability to tear it up down the stretch? Well, his current, potentially highly frustrated owner might, and it’s certainly worth finding out. Just try to find out before Thanksgiving, which is when the Lions, of course, are playing.