by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Not every cut is created equal, and it’s going to depend on your league size/format in many cases. That said there have been some obviously disappointing starts to the season and in the right circumstance three weeks is enough information to formulate a decision, cut bait and move on. Let’s take a look at a few candidates that you should consider dropping:
Joe Flacco – Baltimore Ravens – Quarterback
Calling the trip to London a disastrous one would be an understatement, as Flacco was pulled after going 8-18 for 28 yards, 0 TD and 2 INT. We knew it would be a slow start, after he was nursing injuries throughout the preseason, but he’s now thrown for just 366 yards, 3 TD and 4 INT over the first three weeks of the season. In fact Baltimore has limited him to under 20 passes in two of the three games (though he would’ve thrown more in Week 3 had he not been removed).
You have to think that things will improve, but considering the improvements of players like Jared Goff is it really worth waiting around for a player who would’ve been a low-end option anyways? Especially in single-quarterback formats the time has come to move on.
Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers – Quarterback
Newton is in a similar spot to Flacco, except for the fact that he has the upside of a Top 10 option (and potentially Top 5). While Newton has been working his way back from injury, he’s also watched his top receivers drop like flies with both Greg Olson and now Kelvin Benjamin out for potentially multiple weeks (Olson has already hit the IR). That leaves Newton with a solid running back corps (and Christian McCaffrey is going to be a great receiving option), but little talent on the outside. Devin Funchess (who turned 10 targets into just 4 receptions yesterday) is left as the #1 option, and will be followed by some type of combination f Ed Dickson, Curtis Samuel and a few other underwhelming options.
Newton could be saved by his ability to tuck the ball and run for a TD, but that’s hardly going to be enough. Depending on your waiver wire he’s going to be worth stashing, but in shallower one-quarterback formats there are going to be more dependable options available for the short-term.
Thomas Rawls – Seattle Seahawks – Running Back
Instead of seeing his role increase in his second game on the field, Rawls didn’t get a single touch. Granted it was more of a pass first attack (Russell Wilson attempted 49 passes), but it was Chris Carson (11 carries for 34 yards) and C.J. Prosise (4 carries and 3 receptions) who shared the backfield. Game flow played a role in the decision, but this is a bad sign for Rawls’ outlook moving forward.
We wouldn’t want to have a quick trigger finger, especially if you have the room on your bench to continue stashing him. However viewing him as nothing more than a handcuff, and as droppable in 10-team leagues, is the way to go.
Terrelle Pryor – Washington Redskins – Wide Receiver
Are we really prepared to just dump a player who put up 77 receptions for 1,007 yards and 4 TD a year ago? That may be a stretch, but it’s getting hard to justify utilizing him. Despite Kirk Cousins throwing for 365 yards on Sunday night, Pryor converted just 2 of 4 targets for 19 yards. After being targeted 11 times in Week 1, he has 8 total targets the past two weeks (and overall he has 10 receptions for 116 yards and 0 TD).
Even in his breakout last year Pryor wasn’t a source of TD and it’s possible he was more of a product of his situation playing for a lackluster Browns’ franchise a year ago. At best he’s a player to stash, but he shouldn’t be anywhere near starting lineups.
Make sure to check out all of our Week 4 rankings: