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:
ArDarius Stewart – New York Jets – Wide Receiver
The New York Jets offense appears to be a complete disaster, outside of maybe Bilal Powell, but that could offer opportunity for an under-the-radar option to emerge. While he’s not at the top of the depth chart, would it really be a surprise to see the Jets’ third round draft pick out of Alabama rise to that role in short order? It’s not like the “top” options offer much hope:
- Robby Anderson
- Jalin Marshall
Stewart was the team’s most targeted receiver in the third preseason game, turning 6 targets into 5 catches, 82 yards and 2 TD. The production came in garbage time, but it shows the upside of a player who could quickly emerge. Just look at how NFL.com described him prior to the draft:
“Alabama-tough and plays the game like a grown man. Stewart is an extremely competitive target who has been a catch-and-run option as well as a deep ball threat, but he has the tools to become a solid starter who can be effective in all areas of the field. While Stewart could come in and compete for early kick return duties, some teams may view his run after the catch skills as his true value-added talent.”
The Jets’ quarterback situation could ultimately limit his upside, but there’s opportunity and potential talent. Drafting him as your WR5 in deeper formats and seeing if you can find something makes a whole lot of sense.
Stock – Rising
Deshaun Watson – Houston Texans – Quarterback
It seemed like the job was his to take, but Watson has failed to seize it. In the preseason dress rehearsal he stumbled against the Saints, completing just 11 of 21 passes for 116 yards, 0 TD and 1 INT. It’s been a disappointing preseason in general (over the past two games he’s gone 14-for-31), and he clearly will open the season behind Tom Savage. That’s not to say that Savage is going to run away with the job, as there’s a good chance that Watson gets an opportunity at some point (though how quickly remains to be seen). However it won’t be Week 1, as he clearly has some growing to do.
Stock – Falling
Corey Coleman – Cleveland Browns – Wide Receiver
Injuries helped Coleman disappoint in his rookie season, but he showed off his upside on Saturday night reeling in 4 catches for 66 yards. There’s a reason that he was the 15th overall selection a year ago and would it be a surprise if he quickly showed why? Getting steady quarterback play would help, and with that all eyes are on DeShone Kizer’s development. In that regard NFL.com noted that things were promising between the two:
“The second-year wideout quickly established a rapport with Kizer, making a diving catch to grab a well-placed pass from the quarterback and move the chains. He made a leaping grab, again on third down in the second quarter, to extend another possession. All three of his completions from Kizer went for 11 or more yards, especially impressive on a sloppy night.”
He’s currently being drafted as a WR4, but he could quickly entrench himself as a must use option. Considering the cost, he’s a must target option.
Stock – Rising
Sources – NFL.com, ESPN, Fantasy Pros
Make sure to check out all of our 2017 Preseason Rankings: