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Dynasty Football Buy / Sell / Hold, Week 8 Edition


In making dynasty league trades, it’s important to be aware of the factors that boost a player’s perceived value such as age, context (targets, touches and opportunity), and, perhaps most importantly, recent performance. Understanding when not to overreact to small sample noise allows us to overcome a potential pitfall that most owners can’t: recency bias.

TDG readers are smart and probably well aware of what it is, but as a refresher, recency bias is a cognitive bias in which people disproportionately weight things that have occurred most recently.

One of my favorite ways to take advantage of this bias is to identify the most vulnerable owners, which tend to be those at the bottom of the standings. By targeting sluggish players on struggling teams you can often benefit from a negative recency effect and work out trades to your advantage.

Below are some of my favorite dynasty assets to target as ‘buys’ and ‘sells’ by capitalizing on other owners’ overreactions to recent performance.

SELL (In Rebuild Mode)

LeSean McCoy:  At 28 years old and with the potential for run-heavy Rex Ryan to get the boot this summer, this very well could be the last time we see “Shady” McCoy among the top ten running backs.  Selling him to a contender for some youth and/or picks would be a good idea before another injury scare like this weekend closes your window.

Matt Forte: Coming off a strong game, you might convince a contender to part with some youth if they buy the Forte we have seen this year.

SELL (In Any Circumstance)

Jordan Howard:  Even coming off an awful game (that could be chalked up to the sketchy quarterback situation), Jordan Howard at 21 years old still intrigues a lot of fantasy owners based on what he has done in recent weeks. I’m not one of those owners.  Howard was always a so-so prospect, Ka’Deem Carey looked good on Sunday and Jeremy Langford is returning soon, making this a prime sell opportunity before his value drops further. Alshon Jeffrey is a free agent after this season and the future looks bleak for this Chicago offense.

BUY (In Rebuild Mode)

Kenneth Dixon: With just six carries on the season, many owners who thought they had a steal in Dixon given the Ravens backfield situation might be losing patience.  Terrance West is not as talented as Dixon, and after losing four straight games and heading into a bye week, I would not be surprised to see the Ravens find out what they can get out of a healthier Dixon from here out.

Josh Doctson: The Redskins finally placed the 23-year-old on the IR, which may end his season.  The time to buy is now as teams looking to make a playoff run may be willing to sell for “now” help. The Redskins’ starting wide receivers Pierre Garcon (30 years old) and DeSean Jackson (30 in December) will both become unrestricted free agents following this NFL season.  Crowder is probably not an outside wide receiver and I expect Doctson to be the Redskins top option outside heading into the 2017 season.

Keenan Allen & Sammy Watkins:  I bunched these two together because they are both young wide receivers who have struggled with injury.  If you are in rebuild mode and the owners are fighting for playoffs you might be able to work a deal for one of these two.  Watkins could see an extreme benefit if Ryan is fired, while Allen still has a few years of Philip Rivers left to return as the target machine we expected him to be this year.

BUY (In Win-Now Mode)

Doug Martin: Proceed with caution on this advice, but the emergence of Jacquizz Rodgers in Tampa Bay coupled with the recent setback (with no return timetable) might cause Martin owners to panic.  If they own Martin without Rodgers, you might be able to land him for a pick.  He will be 28 next season, and with Rodgers hot and Sims returning next year, the backfield situation could look like a fantasy mess to pessimistic owners.  However, if Martin plays again this year, and I think he will, he should return to his role as the unquestioned starter. The key to this target is Tampa Bay’s schedule, which includes matchups against San Diego (5th most pts allowed to RB) in Week 13, and the Week 14 and Week 16 matchups against New Orleans, who have allowed the most fantasy points per game to running backs.

The Author

Matt Mesisca

Matt Mesisca


  1. RC
    October 26, 2016 at 10:31 am

    I got offered Travis Kelce for McCoy, dynasty, current TE is Richard Rodgers or Dwayne Allen. Have David Johnson & Tevin Coleman (when healthy) at RB

    • October 26, 2016 at 11:56 am

      Without knowing how deep you are at RB beyond Johnson and Coleman or how you stand in the rankings, I can’t give my complete approval, but I do like this trade based on what you’ve told me. Having David Johnson really helps and Coleman is no slouch. You really need a tight end and kelce offers a high floor and stability (5 year contract with KC). He’s seen a small decrease in targets but has been very consistent in the past two years and is a young 27. I think this is a solid trade for you long term and gives you a boost at TE, which you clearly need. Also selling Shady now prevents injuries or coaching changes from sapping his value. Make this trade with confidence, just make sure if you’re in the running this year your bench RB situation can keep you afloat.


      • RC
        October 26, 2016 at 12:25 pm

        I’ve also got Spencer Ware, Terrance West, Jalen Richard, Mike Gillislee, Ka’Deem Carey, Lorenzo Taliaferro but that’s it for RB’s on my roster.

        • October 26, 2016 at 12:53 pm

          Spencer Ware! I personally have him higher than McCoy in dynasty or ROS anyway. Make this deal with confidence.

          • RC
            October 26, 2016 at 1:09 pm

            Trade Accepted. Starting line-up now this week is:

            Andrew Luck
            AJ Green
            Alshon Jeffrey
            David Johnson
            Spencer Ware
            Travis Kelce
            Allen Hurns
            Will Fuller

            anybody you don’t like, and think I should move? If so, who would you target, I’m currently 5-2 and 2nd highest scoring team in league.

          • October 26, 2016 at 2:29 pm

            I would be a little wary of Allen Hurns, that passing game has regressed and Marquise Lee looks legitimate. Hurns could be the victim as the odd man out moving forward. Team looks especially solid in dynasty with cornerstones Luck, Green, DJ, and Will Fuller. I’m not sure you HAVE to make any moves now that you settled your TE situation, but feel free to test the market with Hurns to try and get another WR with some upside such as a package of Hurns+depth for Corey Coleman (without seeing your bench I can’t say what package for sure)

          • RC
            October 26, 2016 at 3:41 pm

            Do you have a Twitter account where I could DM you? We seems to think along the same lines, I dislike Hurns the most. I offered him Hurns for Coleman, see what happens. Thanks for your time!

          • October 26, 2016 at 4:53 pm

            Sure, it’s @Mesisca on twitter. I don’t use it often but I plan to more now that I’m writing for this site. DM me anytime

  2. Kyle
    November 2, 2016 at 1:33 am

    Traded Lamar Miller and Nelson Agholor for TY Hilton and Kenneth Dixon.

    Dynasty league (PPR, 0.3 points per carry), 12-team, keep forever in round drafted (18 rounds), max 10 keepers.
    Lamar Miller (Rd 4), Nelson Agholor (Rd 16)
    TY Hilton (Rd 18), Kenneth Dixon (Rd 12)

    I’ve got Le’Veon Bell, will very likely have the #1 draft pick next season, and working on having a strong receiving core. Thoughts on the trade? And thoughts on Hilton vs Moncrief?

    • November 3, 2016 at 5:35 pm

      I love this trade for you. WR will always out rank RB and Lamar Miller might never explode (despite the workload) in Houston. Not to mention the value of Hilton in the 18th vs. using a 4th on Miller.
      Re: Hilton vs. Moncreif. Hilton is locked up with the Colts through 2020 and I don’t see any reason to be concerned. While Moncreif might end up with a larger share of red zone targets, in a PPR I wouldn’t be concerned with him long term. As a slot guy, he will remain relevant in that offense for years to come and is an absolute steal as an 18th round cost. I will always prefer the longevity and scoring of a high target WR to a high workload RB. Remember that when drafting and trading. Nice work on the trade.

  3. November 7, 2016 at 3:56 am

    think i could land watkins or allen in my dynasty if i offer Ryan Mathews? is that something i should send out

    • November 7, 2016 at 5:13 pm

      I think you would have a hard time landing either of those players for Ryan Mathews, DP just mentioned in a press conference that Sproles is the lead back. Watkins is going to likely return this season. You would probably need to add a player/pick based on the Allen owners needs. If Watkins goes down after returning then you can re-evaluate but for now you will have to offer up more in order to get one of those players. If you are out of the playoffs this year and the owners of watkins or allen are in the running, you might be able to offer some “now” value players with Matthews such as Jonathan Stewart (I dont know your team so its hard to make a real suggestion). If they are not in the playoff hunt and neither are you, I would have no issue giving up Matthews and a 1st/2nd round pick for Watkins or Allen.

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