This week brings just two teams on bye, but with an onslaught of bye-affected players on the horizon in Weeks 8 and 9, owners may be looking to fill open spots via trade, rather than the waiver wire. In short, this remains an opportune time to make a deal.
The general goal when assessing trade prospects is to buy low and sell high, but there are times when buying high and selling low makes sense, as well. And, as always, you want to be a trustworthy and responsible trade partner. No one likes the owner in their league who regularly offers terrible trades or goes into trade talks looking to make an unbalanced deal.
Looking at multiple factors for a trade target, such as schedule, potential floor and ceiling, and health of surrounding teammates, will serve you best. You’ll see references to 4for4’s schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) metric in this column, which we rely on heavily to determine weekly matchup strength. As the season progresses and more data is available, aFPA becomes even more reliable, thanks to its rolling 10-week data.
Each week, I’ll take a look at the top players to target, and those you should aim to sell to get the best value moving forward. Here’s this week’s crop of players.
Dak Prescott, QB, Cowboys
Regardless of what happens with Ezekiel Elliott, Prescott is one of the best fantasy quarterbacks in the league. He’s the sixth-highest-scoring quarterback in the league with 108.3 fantasy points, and, remember, Dallas has already had its bye. The sophomore quarterback is averaging 238.4 yards per game passing, up from last season’s 229.2, and is on track to improve on what he did a season ago. Prescott was considered a low-end QB1 back in draft season, so it’s likely whoever ended up with him in your league has another quarterback on his roster. If he or she is willing to move one of them, see what it might take to pry away Prescott.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Jets
The buy window for the New York tight end may have slammed shut last week, but there’s nothing wrong with starting a discussion. Seferian-Jenkins has appeared to turn himself around after stories of poor work ethic and a bad attitude clouded his time in Tampa Bay. He’s the fourth-highest-scoring tight end in the NFL from weeks three through six, and is averaging 12.1 PPR points a game. The fourth-year tight end is an integral part of the Jets’ offense, and his 29 targets rank second among tight ends during his time on the field this season. There’s enough production here to make him a strong starter the rest of the year, but not so much that his owner wouldn’t consider trading him.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts
Despite Andrew Luck’s absence, Hilton is still getting it done, averaging a respectable 12.9 PPR points per game. He leads the Colts and ranks third among receivers with 485 receiving yards on the season. Hilton is flying way under the radar because of a lack of touchdowns, and the generally low value of the Colts offense as a whole. That makes him a realistic buy target before this weekend’s games, but a few days of patience before making an offer might be the smarter move. His price could dip further after a tough matchup with the Jaguars this week.
John Brown, WR, Cardinals
Back on the field after dealing with lingering issues relating to his sickle-cell trait, Brown has reasserted himself as the No. 2 receiver in Arizona’s offense. Over the last three weeks, he has eight receptions for 136 yards and two touchdowns. Adrian Peterson has injected some life into the Cardinals run game, and that should help open things up for Carson Palmer and the aerial attack. Brown is a handful for any corner in single coverage, thanks to his speed. Perennial stud Larry Fitzgerald gets most of the attention in that offense, so scoring a deal for Brown should be doable.
Tarik Cohen, RB, Bears
Many fantasy owners got a little too excited with Cohen over the first few weeks of the seaosn. While he’s undoubtedly a talented, explosive player, there was never any chance he was taking Jordan Howard’s job. That owed to a variety of reasons, the most important of which is that Howard is quite good. Howard is getting close to double the touches per game that Cohen sees, with an average of 21.5 per game to Cohen’s 12.7. Cohen needs to do nearly all his damage as a receiver, but he has just two catches since Mitchell Trubisky took over as the starter. He still has enough upside to be an attractive piece on the trade market, but it’s time to see what you can get for him.
Javorius Allen, RB, Ravens
Baltimore’s offense has been riddle for fantasy owners, and one that we just can’t seem to decipher. Their backfield is especially murky from week to week. One week it’s Allen leading the bunch, the next it’s Alex Collins. Allen does have the most touches of the group with 99, averaging 16.5 per game, and is locked in as the primary receiver out of the backfield. Still, he isn’t turning that into consistent fantasy production. His solid role in the offense gives him enough of a floor to be a legitimately tradeable piece, but it’s hard to see him as more than a fringe flex player the rest of the season.
Marvin Jones, WR, Lions
Jones has had an up-and-down year that has resulted in 20 catches for 280 yards and three touchdowns. His inconsistency has clouded the fact that he’s the No. 21 receiver in standard leagues, and 26th at the position in PPR formats. Those WR2 rankings could help make him a moveable asset, even though they likely inflate how effective he has been in fantasy leagues to this point of the season. Golden Tate’s injury also helps open up a selling window for Jones, given that his profile in the offense should increase. Remember, you want to put desirable assets out there. Trading isn’t about ripping off your leaguemates. It’s about making winning deals. The only way anyone will talk to you is if you are offering someone of value.
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Nelson Agholor, WR, Eagles
Philadelphia’s offense is running on all cylinders, getting Eagles fans as excited and optimistic as they have been in a long time. Agholor has four touchdowns and is averaging 53.5 receiving yards per game. He has been Carson Wentz’s most reliable deep threat, surprisingly putting himself ahead of Alshon Jeffery in that category. His big-play ability should make it easier to move him, but there’s reason to bet on a downturn. The Eagles have a difficult schedule in the fantasy playoffs, facing the third- and 13th-best defenses against opposing receivers, with an average aFPA of 26.25 points per game to an opponent’s entire receiving corps.