Monday - Jan 21, 2019

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TRADE SCHOOL: Week 3

You may not realize it but week 3 is already upon on us! I hope you are all 2-0 but if you are 1-1, or worse yet 0-2, you may be looking to shake things up a bit. Don’t worry, you aren’t alone! If your team is struggling its likely due to someone letting you down so far. The question “what should I do with _____ ?” has been the theme lately so let’s take a look at a few names that keep popping up.

What Should I do with …

A.J. Green WR, Cincinnati

Coming into the year, if you had told me Green would have been held out of the end zone through two weeks I would have called you crazy. Furthermore, if you had told me that Cincinnati would have been held out of the end zone altogether as a team I would have had you committed! Well, as we all know, that is exactly what has happened so far in 2017. As a result, people are panicking. I can’t tell you what to do with the running backs (other than buy-low on Joe Mixon) but I can safely say you should hold onto Green. He has a combined 10 receptions on 18 targets over the past two weeks so the opportunity is there, he just needs to connect for a touchdown or two. You know who gives up a ton of passing yards and touchdowns? Green Bay, who just happens to be Cincinnati’s next opponent. A trip to Lambeau Field is just what the doctor ordered for this ailing offense. If you own him, hold on. If you need a wide receiver, buy-low – you might not get another chance.

DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, RBs, Tennessee

Murray has been brutal through two matchups and now Tennessee draws Seattle in Nashville in Eeek 3. On top of two abysmal outings for Murray, we are now hearing about “hamstring tightness” not to mention Henry vastly outperforming the old warhorse in Week 2. Although Henry did more with his Week 2 touches (14 carries, 92 yards, TD), Murray out-snapped him 37-30. Tennessee was fourth in the league with 477 rush attempts a year ago so you know you want a piece of this high-volume rushing attack but the situation is murky at the moment. All off-season people were banging the Henry drum and after last week, the drums are getting louder. Use this to your advantage! Henry may take over this backfield but unless Murray goes down (watch this hamstring injury) it won’t happen this season. Murray has proven too valuable to this offense to simply be phased out overnight and his prowess in the passing game isn’t easily replicated (Murray had 53 receptions, 377 receiving yards and three touchdowns in 2016). Dating back to his Alabama days, Henry has never caught more than 15 passes in a season. This could be attributed to the availability of better personnel or it could be attributed to the fact that Henry is a mountain on wheels – who knows? What I do know is that I am buying low on Murray and holding onto Henry where I own him. After last week, Henry’s asking price will be too high to recommend a buy and Murray’s selling price will be too low to recommend him as a sell. You never want to overpay or sell-low – unless you know for a fact it’s time to jump ship. We need to keep an eye on things but don’t bail on Murray just yet and don’t sell the farm to go get Henry either.

Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago

What could you possibly do with this guy? If you own him, good luck selling a player coming off a nine-carry, 7-yard, one drop outing. You might be able to get a little “name value” as my colleague Ryan Black recommended on last week’s “Fantasy Football Feeding Frenzy” podcast but even that ship may have sailed after Week 2. You have a running back who isn’t producing, in a 60/40 timeshare with a dynamic rookie in Tarik Cohen on a dead-end offense. I am a damn good salesman and even I would have a hard time coming up with a decent pitch to buy this guy from me. If you own him, you have no choice but to bench him and wait. Chicago doesn’t have much behind its two running backs and has to field a team each week so there’s a chance Howard will get some kind of run somewhere down the stretch. Until that time he must remain on your bench. If you are in the market for a running back, I cannot advise investing in Howard but keep him on your radar as a potential throw in during your trade negotiations. He is currently worth pennies on the dollar and should be down to “plug-nickel” territory after Pittsburgh shuts him down next week. Pittsburgh has been stingy against the run so far, having allowed a meager 3.2 yards per carry and two rushing touchdowns through two weeks. By the way, neither score went to a “running back.” A quarterback ran one in against them in Week 1 followed by a fullback crossing the goal-line in Week 2. Howard is unlikely to get going in Week 3, further crushing his market value.

Lamar Miller, RB, Houston

What to do with Miller all depends on what your expectations of him were when you drafted him. If you wanted an unspectacular volume play with a low yards per carry average, you got it! Much like 2016, Miller is being fed the ball constantly and doing very little with his opportunities. Currently he is under-pacing his 2016 yards per carry average (4.0) with 3.6 yards per carry and zero touchdowns through two weeks. The good news for Miller owners is that he is currently dominating the snap count over his most logical competition, D’Onta Foreman. But just when you thought it was safe, Tyler Ervin has seen 77 snaps compared to Miller’s 113, jeopardizing Miller’s pseudo bell-cow status. I’d advise waiting for Miller to score, then sell high. I can’t imagine Houston will tolerate his lackluster rushing totals for the entire season, especially as Deshaun Watson continues to improve as a passer. Miller will have weeks where he is useful but he is not the kind of back that will take you to the promised land.

That’s all for this week! Got a trade question of your own? Follow me on Twitter @tradefantasy – I’m always happy to assist with any trade questions!

About David Olivarez

David has been writing fantasy football content steadily since 2012 on the web and has been a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association since 2014. He focuses on Daily Fantasy Sports and Trade Analysis. Feel free to ask him questions on Twitter!