NFC East Pre Draft Offseason Risers & Fallers
Part 2 of our Offseason Risers and Fallers series brings us to the NFC East where there has been plenty
of movement over the last couple months. Below is a look at each team in this division from a dynasty
fantasy football perspective. An important reminder for all of the dynasty FF players out there, we are always walking a fine line in this game. We all know the dangers of over reacting, but there can be just as
many problems if we under react. 2019 wonʼt look anything like 2018 in the same way 2018 didnʼt mirror
2017. We have to react according to the information we have and confidently make our trade offers for the players we value where we see opportunity. With that said, lets take a look at the changes in the NFC East so far:
Coaching Changes - Scott Linehan is out... Remember Kellen Moore? The former great Boise State QB spent one season as the Cowboys QB coach and will now take the reigns of the offense. I would guess Jason Garrett will keep a close eye on the offense given his background, but all signs point to Kellen Moore being the guy. Everything Iʼve read makes me hopeful for Moore as a coach, but the fact is that no one really knows how this will work out. For fantasy purposes we arenʼt fully confident about the type of offense he will run and what it means for the the individual pieces. However, based on the way this team is built I believe we can make a good bit of educated guesses.
Free Agency - Cole Beasley heads to Buffalo and Geoff Swaim left for Jacksonville, but other than that this teams offensive core stays in tact and even brings back a familiar face. Jason Witten heads out of
the MNF booth and back to his starting TE spot in Dallas. With an opening for a slot receiver, the Cowboys
also brought in Randal Cobb on a 1 year deal.
Risers - There are many reasons Iʼm higher on Dak Prescott than most. I know he disappointed last season, but you have to remember that going into last season the only pass catchers he had to throw to with any real NFL experience were Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns and Tavon Austin. Once Amari Cooper entered the building and Michael Gallup started to get up to speed, Dak became a much more reliable fantasy option. Adding to the explosiveness of those players is the reliability of Jason Witten and Randall Cobb and now youʼre starting to build out arguably the best collection of offensive weapons Dak has ever played with. I now fully expect him to be a top 12 QB this season and represents a good buy low for any QB needy fantasy teams.
Fallers - All of our favorite TE dynasty stashes. Whether you were a fan of Blake Jarwin, Dalton Schultz,
or a Rico Gathers truther, the addition of Jason Witten all but rules out any of them being fantasy relevant. Could they catch on elsewhere? I guess, but Iʼm not banking on it anymore. I could also make a case for Michael Gallup to be a faller for this team as well. Losing Beasley looked like he could be in for more targets, but Witten and Cobb are expected to eat up most of that now. I still think the person most responsible for Gallups target share will be Michael Gallup and if he can take a step forward I donʼt think Cobb is capable of keeping him off the field at this stage of his career. If you can convince anyone to buy Cobb, do it now.
New York Giants
Coaching Changes - No changes
Free Agency - Outside of losing G Jason Brown, the Giants didnʼt lose many players to FA. Of course, that didnʼt stop them from trading one of the most talented WRʼs in the game and replacing him with Golden Tate.
Risers - Injuries kept Evan Engram from fully breaking out in 2018 as he finished with just a 45/577/3 line, but he clearly showed the talent to double that total in 2019. If Engram can stay healthy, the loss of OBJ puts him front and center as the most talented of Eliʼs pass catchers sans Barkley. In games without Beckham last season Engram averaged 5.5 rec and 80 yards on almost 8 targets per game. The addition of Golden Tate could present a threat to his target share, but I wouldnʼt bet on it. Engram needs the ball and Eli will get it to him (to the best of his ability).
Fallers - Sterling Shephard looked like he could be the primary beneficiary of Odellʼs departure, but then
the Giants surprised everyone with the signing of Golden Tate and Shephardʼs stock promptly tumbled. Itʼs not that Shephard wonʼt have some opportunities to contribute in this offense and I can even see a
scenario where he provides some fantasy value in 2019, but I donʼt see that as likely and Shephard is the kind of player I donʼt like to have on my roster. His ceiling is limited, his floor is low. Heʼs a bench player at best and Iʼd rather stash players with higher upside.
Coaching Changes - None
Free Agency - Super Bowl hero Nick Foles left for Jax. Golden Tate and Jordan Matthews have departed as well and as of this writing Jay Ajayi remains unsigned although there are rumors he could return. The Eagles also reunited with Desean Jackson in a trade with TB.
Risers - Thereʼs not a single WR or RB on this team that I want to roster right now. Between the general
philosophy of the Eagles to spread the ball around and use multiple weapons and the overall lack of inspiring players currently employed in those spots I canʼt see myself rostering any of them. Josh Adams was probably the most productive back on this team last season, but is now reportedly on the roster
bubble. Zach Ertz is going to do Zach Ertz things and is locked in as a top TE, but the most exciting player on this team is Dallas Goedert. His snap count will need to rise in order for us to be able to trust him in our lineups, but if they do I expect him to breakout. Weʼve seen TE duos produce for fantasy before and Philly could be constructing the next iteration of that.
Fallers - Itʼs been 5 years since Alshon Jeffrey had over 850 yards receiving or more than 65 catches. Heʼs
also only reached 16 games played once in the last 4 seasons and is now entering his age 29 season. Injuries, inconsistency and now lots of competition for targets makes Alshon a player Iʼm avoiding/selling.
Coaching Changes - Matt Cavanaugh is staying with the Redskins, but Kevin OʼConnell will replace him as
the OC in 2019. OʼConnell was the passing game coordinator for them last season and the QB coach for the last two.
Free Agency - Jamison Crowder leaves for the Jets, but other than that Washington brings back most of its offense from last season including Adrian Peterson. Their big move so far this off season was to
trade for Case Keenum presumably hoping he can find the form he had in 2017 when he helped the Vikings get to the NFC Championship game. Also, donʼt forget they will get Derrius Guice back from ACL surgery.
Risers - This is a team full of question marks so Iʼll utilize this section to talk about Derrius Guice. Despite the team bringing back Peterson, Iʼm expecting to see big things from former Tiger in his first presumably healthy season with his team. He has the talent to be one of the very best RBʼs in the league and will be a nightmare for defenders this season if all goes well. In fact, he may be the only player currently on this roster worth rostering.
Fallers - All of the pass catchers on this team have giant question marks. First and foremost, Iʼd peg Washington as the team most likely to come away with multiple WR/TEʼs in this draft. Even if they get a chance to start, can PRich or Reed stay healthy? I hope so, but I doubt it. Can Doctson become more consistent in his fourth year? Not sure Iʼd take that bet. Plus, with Case Keenum at the helm how much value will there be in this passing game? Iʼm staying away.