After a hectic week to open the season, Week 4 of fantasy football brought us more ups and downs and head-scratching moments. Here are a handful of players entering Week 4 of the fantasy football season that presents an optimal opportunity to buy low or sell high on.
Who Are Some Fantasy Football Buy-low Week 5 Trade Targets?
Since expectations vary across fantasy managers, there could be a window for you to acquire some of these players at a value. All of these candidates are in a position to exceed expectations this season.
Gabe Davis, Buffalo Bills
Fantasy managers who bought into the Gabe Davis breakout are beginning to panic, but I don’t know if that is the right mindset. After a 100% route participation, Davis missed Week 2 but went right back into action, recording a 96% rate in Week 3 and then 100% in soaked Baltimore on Sunday. But you’d never know it if you looked at his box score, catching one of his three targets for 13 yards.
Add in his 100% snap rate, and Davis is still the high-upside No. 2 option he was at the beginning of the year. He is beyond the injury, and Buffalo had a brutal matchup against the Ravens and the weather. That’s not the case in Week 5 as the Bills face the 1-3 Steelers, who lost to the New York Jets. I’d buy low on Davis before a potential explosion against the Steelers.
Garrett Wilson, New York Jets
It’s time to un-learn everything we saw in the first three weeks and adjust to the Jets under Zach Wilson. Rather than Joe Flacco tossing the ball around over 50 times a game, Wilson and the Jets were league-average at 36 attempts, 37 if you include the Philly Philly-eqsue play by Braxton Berrios to Wilson for the TD.
While we could use some more data, Garrett Wilson is worth a shot as a buy-low candidate despite his seemingly down outing. Wilson’s snap rate has steadily increased weekly, and while he only had two receptions and 41 yards, Wilson still had his third game in a row with six plus targets while posting his highest YPRR (1.58) since he began seeing the bulk of his snaps from the slot. Buying low on Wilson might be a solid option if a manager wants to cut bait and run after a quick dip in production.
George Pickens, Pittsburgh Steelers
On Sunday, Mike Tomlin made the long-awaited move at QB, giving Kenny Pickett the ball to start the half. While it wasn’t the prettiest, I’d argue it’s the best the Steelers have moved the ball all year, at one point scoring 20 straight. Even his three picks are more than meets the eye. No. 1 was a bad decision but took a deep shot to Claypool. The second was off Diontae Johnson’s hands but was a bit high, allowing the DB to catch the tip. No. 3 was a hail mary as time expired.
In the process, George Pickens went off, pulling in six of his eight targets for 102 yards on Sunday. Pickens’ 31% target share doubled Diontae Johnson, while Chase Claypool failed to record a catch. After an 8.1 and 9.1% target share in the first two weeks, Pickens has seen 21.9% and now 31% in the last two. Add in an aDOT of 20, and Pickens is set to blow up. Even after this game, he is still a buy-low target but would be a difficult start against Buffalo.
Who Are Some Fantasy Football Sell-high Week 3 Candidates?
Actual value vs. perceived value is also something fantasy managers need to have the pulse on. It cannot only tell you when to buy low but also when to sell high before the floor crashes out. Here are three players that could be worth selling before their value drops.
Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers
After three weeks, Austin Ekeler finally had his blowup game many fantasy managers who spent a first-round pick were hoping out of him. Ekeler rushed 13 times for 60 yards and two touchdowns while catching six of seven targets for 49 yards and another score. He went from no scores on 54 opportunities to sitting inside the top 10 for the position.
Ekeler’s 20 touchdowns set him up for regression. But this sudden burst will lead many to feel this is a return to his 2021 form. Those people might end up disappointed. Ekeler only had a 58.5% snap rate and saw his hold on both early downs and thrids downs slip. He had just three more carries than Sony Michel and Joshua Kelly and took advantage of a soft matchup.
With Keenan Allen set to return, leading to a potential drop in targets plus a drop in scores, I consider Ekeler a sell-high candidate ahead of Week 5. You can get a pretty penny for him at the moment.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Kansas City Chiefs
I know I am stubborn. Ask anyone who knows me, and they’d rather have a conversation with a brick wall when I have my mind made up. I am willing to admit I was wrong about Clyde Edwards-Helaire to an extent, but do we really think he is the RB4 overall as he was coming into the week?
The guy who couldn’t buy a ticket to the end zone can’t stop visiting it. After three scores in the first three weeks, Edwards-Helaire had a multi-score game before Sunday Night Football reached halftime on just seven touches.
The touchdowns are massively inflating his output. Look at Week 3 when Edwards-Helaire was the RB14 but has zero yards on seven carries. Jerick McKinnon is still a factor, and Isiah Pacheco sees enough volume to limit Edwards-Helaire’s upside, and at some point, this roller coaster will derail. In fact, he came into this week being out-snapped by McKinnon and hadn’t seen more than 12 opportunities a game.
He was a top sell-high target after the first two weeks, and those who held onto him were gifted with another opportunity to move on from someone with multiple seasons of up-and-down play. Edwards-Helaire will be a sell-high again in Week 5 ahead of a matchup with the Raiders.
Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders
It’s not that Josh Jacobs is a sell-high candidate that you have to move, but maybe someone worth kicking the tires on to see what you can get. Averaging 14 carries and 64 yards a game, Jacobs had a career day against the reeling Broncos, rushing 24 times for 144 yards with two touchdowns, catching five of six targets for 31 additional yards.
From an opportunity standpoint, Jacobs dominated the backfield. He played on 66 of the 75 offensive plays while recording 98% of the early down snaps (46), 100% of the goal-line snaps (3), 71% of the short area snaps, and 100% of the two-minute drill opportunities. The only area Jacobs was on the sidelines was on third downs, something unlikely to change. He’s one of few workhorses in the NFL, receiving 86% of the snaps thus far.
As I said, you don’t need to trade Jacobs, but given his start to the season and supreme utilization, it’s hard to see his value being higher, maybe ever, as his contract expires after this season. If I could parlay Jacobs plus someone else into Davin Cook, for example, I’d do that in a heartbeat. Rather than a sell-high candidate, consider Jacobs an ultimate chess piece for your strategy.