- T.J. Yeldon and Carlos Hyde lead our look at players who no longer have meaningful fantasy value.
Early in the week, the fantasy football community is focused on the waiver wire. Of course, to pick up one player, you must drop another. This column covers the other side of that transaction. Get acquainted with our Week 11 Droppables.
As always, remember that these are not players you must drop. Specific league parameters, such as starting lineup requirements, roster size, and number of teams, will go a long way toward determining who should be dropped, and who should be kept. Droppables, then, can still be roster-worthy, but no longer deserve a guaranteed spot on a roster in most leagues.
T.J. Yeldon and Carlos Hyde, RBs, Jaguars
Leonard Fournette made his long-awaited return from a hamstring injury on Sunday, and he asserted his dominance over the Jacksonville backfield. Fournette racked up 24 carries and five targets, totaling 109 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns in the Jaguars’ 29-26 loss to the Colts. Yeldon did get six targets in the game, catching five for 51 yards, while Hyde was a total afterthought, running the ball three times for five yards. It’s admittedly a bit risky to let either of these guys go, considering the roles they’d have should Fournette’s hamstring act up again, and with the Jaguars slowly but surely falling out of the AFC playoff picture, it’s entirely possible that the team will want to protect their star running back with 2019 in mind. Still, so long as Fournette is healthy and active, neither Yeldon nor Hyde will have a large enough role to warrant consideration as a fantasy starter.
Jordy Nelson, Raiders
Nelson played nearly 70% of Oakland’s snaps in its Week 10 loss to the Chargers, but you wouldn’t know that by looking at the box score. The veteran receiver didn’t have a target in the game, and left early with a quad injury. He has now had fewer than 20 yards in four straight games, fewer than 50 in six straight, and fewer than five targets in five consecutive contests. That’s not someone you need to keep on your roster, despite the name brand.
Taylor Gabriel, Bears
Gabriel was a hot commodity on the waiver wire earlier this year, when it appeared he was securing a meaningful role in Chicago’s offense. That has taken a turn of late, with Gabriel getting just 15 targets in his last four games. He was shut out completely in the Bears’ 34-22 win over the Lions, getting zero looks from Mitchell Trubisky while Allen Robinson and Anthony Miller both put up huge performances. With Robinson back, Miller emerging, and Tarik Cohen and Trey Burton both locked into large target shares, there simply aren’t enough targets to go around to make Gabriel relevant in most fantasy leagues.
Chris Thompson, Redskins
Thompson was out again on Sunday because of a rib injury, the fourth time he has been inactive in Washington’s last five games. He appears no closer to returning to the field than he was at the start of his injury woes, and he may be returning to an offense with little value in its passing attack when he does get back on the field. For some reason, though, he’s still owned in about 65% of leagues across the industry. It’s time to let this pipe dream go.
Ito Smith, Falcons
Yeah, we pick on Smith a lot in these parts, but it’s only because so many members of the fantasy community have unrealistic expectations for the rookie out of Southern Miss. His brutal floor was on display yet again in Atlanta’s 28-16 loss to Cleveland. He got just four carries and five targets, totaling 26 yards from scrimmage. He does have some value as a low-end flex play in deeper leagues, but no other player with as dreadful a floor as he has gets this much love from fantasy owners. While he trudged his way to nine opportunities, Tevin Coleman got 16. He didn’t do much with his, either, but he’s clearly in command of a two-thirds share of Atlanta’s backfield touches. That leaves Smith with an awfully tough path to making a fantasy living.