Home > NFL > Good Bye NFL Lockout. Hello Player Transactions and Fantasy Football!

Good Bye NFL Lockout. Hello Player Transactions and Fantasy Football!

The end of the NFL lockout was accompanied by a flurry of player movement throughout the league. With the season to start up as originally scheduled these transactions bring new hope to fans that only a short month ago had no idea if the NFL was even going to be playing. Not only do the personnel changes shake things up for the actual teams it (more importantly to some) has huge implications on the upcoming fantasy league drafts in late August and early September.

I am going to go over some of the recent moves that were made by teams in the NFL, but I am not going to talk about the validity or “thinking” behind the football-decisions that were made; instead I am going to talk about how relevant the moves were in terms of beating your friends in fantasy leagues this year.

Big Moves that are Seemingly Irrelevant for Fantasy:

Randy Moss Retires: This move doesn’t mean much for most fantasy players that do their research, other than being able to smirk at the your friends who didn’t do their research and waste their high round pick on Moss just because it is the only name on the list that they recognize. Moss has been antagonizing fantasy owners for the last two years.

Sidney Rice to the Seattle Seahawks: Rice missed most of last season due to major hip surgery and only came back in time to have the corpse of Brett Farve throw a few balls in his direction in meaningless games. Sadly, Rice is going to the Seahawks who just let their veteran QB walk and picked up Tavaris Jackson who has been sitting on the pine behind Farve for the last 2 years. I think they are both going to be disappointing in Seattle.

Albert Haynesworth to the New England Patriots: One of the major defensive off-season moves does beef up the Pats for when Brady is off the field. Expect some improvement but nothing fantasy worthy that should make you draft the Pats D any higher than you were originally planning.

Plaxico Burress to the New York Jets: Here are a few quick points on why I see this move as being extremely over-hyped. 1) Burress just spent 2 years in jail. No matter how much you work out in jail, it is nowhere near the same as working with a paid training staff and playing real games. Even Vick had some time adjusting and isn’t the physical freak he was before jail. 2) How much is Burress actually worth? Ya, he made the game winning touchdown catch versus the Pats in 2007, but David Tyree made “the helmet catch” in that same game and now he isn’t even in the NFL. 3) Mark Sanchez is not going to be able to get the ball to Burress or any other Jets WRs to make them extremely relevant in fantasy this year. They are a run offense and defense minded team.

Ok, so now on to the off-season moves that should change some of your thinking when your league’s draft day comes about.

The Most Fantasy-Relevant NFL Transactions of the 2011 Off Season:

Reggie Bush to the Miami Dolphins: New Orleans played a very different style of offence than most teams around the league. No one player was ever the continuous first target for QB Drew Brees as he has a number of skilled players around him. The efficiency of the Saints offence was largely based on diversity, which is bad news for any fantasy players. Reggie was used in a variety of ways with the Saints, but was never a go-to-guy. In Miami, where they just cleared house of running backs, expect Bush to get a lot more touches of the ball. I am not saying that Bush is capable of being the go-to-guy but now he is going to get the chance to be.

Chad Ochocinco to the New England Patriots: This move has a very good chance of being the Randy Moss 2.0 experiment for the Pats. The first experiment lead to unprecedented success for any fantasy players who owned Moss or Tom Brady. Even if Chad Ocho is half of what Moss was in New England, his stock is much higher than it was last year with the Bengals.

Nnamdi Asomugha to the Philadelphia Eagles: This move, combined with the acquisition of corner Dominique Rogers-Cromartie gives the Eagles a secondary that could rival the Jets for top bragging rights. Over all, the Eagles are shaping up, on paper anyways, to be a scary team. Their offense lead by Michael Vick should be able to create early leads that will in effect force opponents to make riskier passing plays in order to catch up. With a secondary of Rogers-Cromartie and Asomugha, look for the Eagles D to provide some pretty solid fantasy points.

Kevin Cobb to the Arizona Cardinals: Opposite of Rogers-Cromartie heading to the Ealges, Kevin Cobb is headed to fill the gaping QB hole in Arizona. Although not all of last year’s blame can be put on the combination of Anderson and Matt “Party Boy” Lienard, having all of 2 seconds to make throws behind the Swiss cheese o-line of the Cards, Cobb should be an improvement. This move should not provoke the higher drafting of Cobb as much as it should affect the fantasy value of Larry Fitzgerald. Fitz is probably one of the most talented wide-outs in the league and has an extremely calm demeanor when compared to the other WR divas in the league. Look for Fitzgerald to have a good year, probably not as strong as when he had the right arm of Kurt Warner tossing it to him, but much better than last year.

The eight transactions listed above include what I see as the extremes of least and most relevant in terms of fantasy. I will recognize that there have been a ton of other trades and free-agent signings, but I don’t see them being as big-impact as these ones. Unless of course someone out there thinkas Matt Hasselbeck is going to take the Titans to the promise land on his fragile back, or that the re-singing of Steve Smith is Carolina is going to make any difference. This is how I see it.

Let me know if I’m wrong.

Follow Matt on Twitter: @Matt FOTB

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  1. August 1, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Two years with nothing better to do but hit the bench press, Plax is gunna be a beast!

    • August 1, 2011 at 8:57 pm

      Doubt it, but you should draft him in the first round to find out…

  2. August 14, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive read anything like this before. So nice to find somebody with some original thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for starting this up. this website is something that is needed on the web, someone with a little originality. useful job for bringing something new to the internet!

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