The new league year is officially on the books ladies and gents! Players and teams are making moves left and right and the fun part, seeing which players are landing in what spots. Believe me, there’s also some frustrations too. If you’ve listened to episode 34 of The Fantasy’s Phinest podcast, we had our favorite places for some of the players on free agency. Best believe that I had my fingers crossed that some of these guys would land on my selections.
With more and more players finding new homes, the ebbs and flows of player fantasy values will change and in some cases dramatically. That’s the fun part though. Nothing gets emotions more mixed up then seeing the end results for players throughout free agency and it certainly gives you something to talk about as we get closer to draft season. As we head into the weekend, let’s get a gauge on where some players are at and whether or not their value has changed for the better or worse.
- Ryan Fitzpatrick – Signed with Washington Football Team – Contract: 1 year/$10 million, $6 million guaranteed
Fitzpatrick is back for at least another season and him landing with the WFT is actually a good move for the team and particularly for Terry McLaurin. Fitz isn’t afraid to throw the ball all over the place and was actually pretty solid last season over his 9 game start in Miami before being switched out for Tua. Fitzpatrick is actually ranked 2nd among QBs in Deep Ball Completion percentage which should come in handy in opening up the Football Teams passing attack a bit more than it was under Alex Smith last season.
- AJ Green – Signed with Arizona Cardinals – Contract: 1 year/ $6 million
I know some might be thinking that Green might be on his way out but I actually like this signing. Green may not be the number 1 with DeAndre Hopkins taking the lead but the Cards and Kyler Murray definitely needed another red-zone threat and Green gives them just that. Kyler Murray was 4th in fantasy points from inside the red-zone last season. Can you imagine if you give him a red-zone threat like AJ Green with DeAndre Hopkins on the other side plus defenses having to account for Murray’s rushing ability too? Not to mention whatever running back they end up with to boot?
Green should make it tougher for defenses next season.
- Corey Davis – Signed with New York Jets. Contract: 3 Years/$37.5 million w/$27 million guaranteed
I’m a bit on the fence with this move but I’ll give it the nod to the “stock up” side. Corey Davis comes into a Jets team that lacked a true number one wide receiver. The jury may still be out on Davis to fill that role after his rather lackluster performances in Tennessee until last season, but he has a real opportunity to build off of that success with either Sam Darnold or a new QB that may come in through the draft. The Jets were 2nd worst in receiving yards in 2020 and rebuilding their wide receiving core should be a step in the right direction with bringing Davis (and possibly another wide receiver) to go along with Denzel Mims and Jameison Crowder.
- Chris Godwin – Signed Franchise Tag w/ Tampa Bay. Tag Price: $15.98 million
Bringing Chris Godwin back to Tampa definitely isn’t a bad thing. Godwin dealt with some major injuries last season which put a lid on his production with him missing 4 games. Still, had he been able to stay healthy, at 70 yards a game average last year, he would have cracked the thousand-yard mark for the second time in his career. Godwin should still continue to be a highly regarded target for fantasy next season.
- Curtis Samuel – Signed w/ Washington Football Team. Contract: 3 Years/ $34.5 million
I like this move but I feel like this is going to hurt my Anthony Gandy-Golden/Cam Sims sleeper shares. The addition of Samuel definitely adds more speed to the team (I hope my Cowboys are paying attention! That secondary needs to get fixed!) and the ability to take the tops off defenses. With the pairing of him and Terry McLaurin with Fitzmagic under center, this should be one of the better low-key signings in free agency thus far. Samuel averaged 11.1 yards per reception last season with Teddy Bridgewater and the Carolina Panthers.
- Jonnu Smith/Hunter Henry – Signed w/ New England Patriots. Contract: (JS) 4 Years/ $50 million dollars w/ $31.25 million guaranteed. (HH) 3 Years/$37.5 mILLION W/ $25 MILLION GUARANTEED
Folks are going to be a bit skeptical about tight ends and how the New England Patriots have used them as of late but I think that time is done. With the current additions to the team being a bit underwhelming at the wide receiver position, it looks like the Patriots are going to use 2 tight ends to help Cam Newton (or whatever quarterback ends up being the starter) move the ball down the field. Both tight ends average 6+ yards per target and both come with their own skill sets.
Jonnu Smith could be a dynamic force in the red-zone with all of his 9 touchdowns coming from inside the 20 last season for the Tennessee Titans. Hunter Henry could be the guy who helps you get down the field as he’s a bit of a mismatch problem for opposing linebackers with a 55.6% contest catch rate that ranked 11th among tight ends last season. The Patriots had neither of these options on the team as Cam Newton passed for just 8 touchdowns in 2020.
- Rob Gronkowski – Re-signed w/ Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Contract: 1 Year/ $8 million
Rob Gronkowski actually had an offer to go to the Buffalo Bills, his hometown team, before opting to return to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the one year deal. Gronk may have to contend with returning tight end O.J. Howard and backup TE Cameron Brate heading into the 2021 training camp but for now, Gronk may still have the inside track with Brady still at the helm. Gronk still lead all Bucs tight ends in snap shares (77.4%) and finished the TE 8 on the season in 2020.
- Chris Carson – Re-signed w/ Seattle Seahawks – 2yr/$10.4 million
Carson signing back may seem like a lateral move but this still proves him with a good stock option as a solid RB 2 in fantasy drafts for the 2021 season. Carson averaged 15.6 fantasy points per game, ranking 14th overall among running backs in 2020. Back in a familiar system with the Seahawks and more than likely the lead back once again despite a backfield with Rashaad Penny, Deejay Dallas, Travis Homer, and Alex Collins nipping for work.