Baker Mayfield, QB, Jarvis Landry, WR, Duke Johnson, RB, CLE - There are kinks in the game of Mayfield, chemistry between Mayfield and Landry, and usage of Johnson that need to be worked out, but the upcoming schedule of Tampa, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, and Atlanta is practically a red carpet for a passing game. The strengths of Mayfield’s game really come out when he is in more ideal conditions, and the fatal combinations of below average pass rushes and secondaries for most of those teams should allow Mayfield to operate more comfortably. We know what Landry can do with Ryan Tannehill targets, and Johnson looked like a player that demands more involvement in the offense last week - if the offense stays predominantly in pass mode, both of these players could get hot with rational quarterback play and game-planning.
Russell Wilson, QB, Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, David Moore, WR, SEA - The seasons come, the seasons go, and Russell Wilson heats up as a second half of the season passer. This is the way of the world. Wilson’s second half schedule goes like this: at the Lions, Chargers, at the Rams, Packers, at Carolina, 49ers, Vikings, at 49ers, and in Week 16, drumroll… Chiefs. Baldwin looked like his old self last week. Lockett has proven week after week that he’s a threat to sneak behind defenses for easy long scores, and Moore is making the most skilled plays of the wide receiver group. This offense built to run can switch to pass mode easily and it should have occasion to in upcoming weeks.
Nick Chubb, RB, CLE, Rashaad Penny, RB, SEA - I’m getting tired of listing Kerryon Johnson and Aaron Jones here, but you get the idea. The running back that resembles a bull in the chute is one that you want on your bench. Penny and Johnson are in the best situations, Jones has the most proven talent, Chubb has flashed the brightest against Oakland. These are the kinds of young backs that pull teams to championships while they ignite like a solid rocket booster against weary second half defenses. Target them in redraft leagues where you have a hole at RB2.
Dallas Goedert, TE, PHI - My dynasty fascination with Goedert can’t be slowed down by his return to footnote in the Eagles offense. Surely that won’t last forever as Goedert already has shown big wide receiver skills and chemistry with Carson Wentz. Tight end is a tough position to solve right now, this could be the last window to get in ahead of an ideal intersection of talent and offense.
Kenyan Drake, RB, MIA - Drake fell to his knees in a true moment of redemption when the Dolphins beat the Bears. He is starting to have more moments reminiscent of December 2017 and even if we are rowing upstream against Adam Gase there is only so long that a player like Drake will be contained. The infatuation with a foundation back all-around game has faded into frustration with coaching, so he could be available. The Lions defense presents a potential launching pad this week.
Larry Fitzgerald, WR, ARI - Fitzgerald is getting healthier and Josh Rosen is a gamer. He can help dynasty teams looking for wide receiver depth. Fitzgerald doesn’t strike me as the type to go gently into that good night, remember we were drafting him as a WR2 a few months ago. He still has the potential to fulfill that against a second half schedule that includes Kansas City, Oakland, Detroit, and Atlanta.
Keelan Cole, WR, JAX - It’s difficult to want to buy into any passing game led by Blake Bortles, but Cole still stands out as the highest ceiling player in this group and the one I want to be sitting on in dynasty leagues, or relying on for depth if I have to use a Jaguars receiver in redraft leagues. He still hasn’t played his best ball yet.
Greg Olsen, TE, CAR - High might be exaggerating a bit, but Olsen got back on the field without incident and looked like himself in a modest pass-catching role. His foot could give way any week and who knows what he’ll be after that. If you can sell him for any useful asset in dynasty legaues this week, do it.
Deshaun Watson, QB, DeAndre Hopkins, WR, HOU - Deshaun Watson is taking too many hits and I’m not sure there’s anything the Texans can do to put a stop to it. Watson’s playing style, the poor running game, and the poor pass protection are going to put him in the crosshairs week after week. We’re looking at Andrew Luck’s early career arc and we all know what happened to him. That is to say that Watson could level off as a perennial fantasy stud, but not before more turbulence on take off. Don’t sell Hopkins in dynasty leagues, but do be open to selling him in redraft leagues where he might bring a huge running back name or two strong lineup improving pieces elsewhere if you have wide receiver depth.
David Njoku, TE, CLE - See the Mayfield, etc, buy low take above, but strike the parts about something missing. Njoku looks like a more under control and confident player in year two and Mayfield will be smart enough to remember who butters his bread. Njoku is about to take off.
Marques Valdez-Scantling, WR, GB - Valdez-Scantling had moments of great chemistry and poor chemistry with Aaron Rodgers in the win over San Francisco, but it was clear that he offers more consistency than Geronimo Allison or Randall Cobb. His arrow is only pointing up, and rational coaching should dictate that Cobb and Allison share time with Valdez-Scantling when they return.
Geronimo Allison, WR, GB - Allison is banged up and he did make something of a solid role in an Aaron Rodgers pass offense, but the clock is ticking while the 2018 draft class is developing. Allison may soon go back to being the fourth or fifth option in this pass offense.