by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
We all know that it doesn’t take much for a player’s value to increase or decrease as we head towards fantasy drafts. It only takes a rumor or innuendo, or a minor injury that causes missed time, to send someone’s value spiraling in either direction. Let’s take a look at a few players whose value has changed over the past few days for various reasons:
Davante Parker – Wide Receiver – Miami Dolphins
Stock – Rising
After Thursday’s preseason game Jay Cutler was quoted by Adam Beasley of The Miami Herald (click here for the article) as saying this in regards to his new weapon, DaVante Parker:
“I think he’s kind of a faster Alshon, a little bit,” Cutler said. “He’s got a lot of range. Back-shoulder, over the top. He’s got great hands. And he can burn you up if you get [stuck] flat-footed.”
Remember Cutler was steering the ship when Alshon Jeffrey posted the best seasons of his career, with back-to-back 80+ reception, 1,000+ yard seasons in 2013 & 2014. In those years he also combined for 17 TD and saw at least 145 targets per season.
If that’s a strong indication of the opportunities Parker could receive in 2017, he could prove to be a tremendous value selection.
JuJu Smith-Schuster – Wide Receiver – Pittsburgh Steelers
Stock – Falling
A second round selection, there were high hopes for the rookie heading into 2017. However consistent missed time this preseason is going to hurt his outlook as he needs time to build a rapport with Ben Roethlisberger. According to Jeremy Fowler (via Twitter):
WR JuJu Smith-Schuster: bone bruise in knee, day-to-day
Remember Smith-Schuster suffered a concussion in the team’s first preseason game, so he missed some practice time after that. He also has an uphill battle for opportunities, clearly behind Antonio Brown, Martavis Brown and Le’Veon Bell in the pecking order.
Already having to beat out Eli Rogers, Darrius Heyward-Bey and Sammie Coates for playing time, any missed time is going to hurt. At this point Smith-Schuster is better off as a potential waiver wire grab as opposed to a player to target at the tail end of your draft.
Jamison Crowder – Wide Receiver – Washington Redskins
Stock – Status Quo
When you read this type of outlook, courtesy of Mike Jones of The Washington Post (click here for the article), it’s easy to get excited:
Crowder has looked good in practice, winning matchups against Josh Norman when lined up outside and against Kendall Fuller or linebackers or safeties when lined up in the slot. He has used crisp route-running to shake the likes of Norman and Fuller, and speed to win against linebackers and safeties.
Let’s not forget, though, that as Jones points out a healthy Jordan Reed will remain the team’s top weapon. The receiving corps also has Terrelle Pryor and Josh Doctson, meaning there will be plenty of competition for targets.
Crowder showed plenty of upside last season, including scoring 7 TD. Of course he’s only 5’9” so it’s hard to envision him maintaining that mark, and there’s no reason to think that he’s going to see a significant upgrade over his 97 targets (he could even take a step back). It’s easy to get excited, but don’t go overreaching to get Crowder. While he has WR3 upside, he’s more of a WR4 type on draft day.
Sources – ESPN, The Miami Herald, The Washington Post
Make sure to check out all of our 2017 Preseason Rankings: