Week 6 has come and gone and fantasy owners are in a frenzy over who to add, drop and put on the trade block. Some players' trade value will never be higher, while others are ideal buy-low candidates meaning you should try to capitalize on the fear generated by a slow Week 6 outing for players who have positive outlooks for the season.
That's why this column, "Trade Calls" will come at you each and every week. It's pretty simple: I do the heavy lifting, you get some information and start making offers. So ahead of Week 7, here are some players to think about trying to acquire on the low, and moving after a big Week 6 performance.
PLAYERS TO TRADE FOR
Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Antonio Brown's fantasy trade value will never be lower coming off a game where he had a season-low 45 yards.
In Jones' only true start last season in which he actually knew he'd be the starter, got all of the first team reps in practice and finished the game, Brown piled up 124 receiving yards. Jones is obviously not Big Ben, but he should be able to keep Brown's fantasy value afloat for the time being.
Brown is arguably the best wideout in the NFL, and the Steelers offense runs through him, and Le'Veon Bell. Proof? Brown has more receptions (45) this year than Sammie Coates has targets (35), and Coates has the second-most targets on the team. Brown has a 28 percent market share of team targets (including tight ends and running backs) and owns a 47 percent market share of the team's wide receiver targets.
While Jones may not be as accurate, efficient, or poised as Big Ben, anyone trading for Brown should be confident that the backup quarterback will still funnel the majority of his pass attempts to Brown, because, quite simply, he'd be stupid not to. Plus, if Landry ends up slinging a bunch of interceptions, that opens up the game script to favor the Steelers' receiver.
Fantasy value is all about opportunities, and for wideouts, targets equal opportunities, just ask Matt Harmon. So with Roethlisberger expected back for the fantasy playoffs at worst, you just might be able to pull-off a league-winning trade while Brown's owner is sulking.
Isaiah Crowell, RB, Cleveland Browns
The Crow has had a couple of slow games in a row against tough matchups with fewer than 25 rushing yards in each of the last two contests. The Browns faced a Titans team allowing the eighth-fewest fantasy points per game to running backs in Week 5 followed by the Patriots, who are allowing the sixth-fewest fppg to running backs.
Despite the two stinkers in which he averaged just 1.7 yards per carry, Crowell is still averaging 5.2 yards per carry for the season and is touching the ball on 43 percent of his snaps (highest rate among non-quarterbacks on the Browns, compared to Duke Johnson's 29 percent touch percentage, per FantasyData.com. This means the team is leaning on Crowell more than any other player on the offense which is a positive sign going forward. Among 17 running backs with a touch percentage between 40-45 percent, Crowell ranks seventh in fantasy points with 70.3.
He is still the clear leader of the Cleveland backfield and should see an increased role against Cincinnati's 20th ranked rush defense in Week 7. The Bengals defense is not what it used to be and has surrendered 866 total yards to opposing backs so far this year. Crowell has hogged 76 percent of the Browns' red-zone rush attempts and is still on pace for over 200 carries and well over 1,200 scrimmage yards. If he has a good game against the Bengals, and you can bet Hue Jackson will look to make a statement against his former team via the ground attack, it will probably then be too late to make a move for Crowell.
PLAYERS TO TRADE AWAY
Marvin Jones, WR, Detroit Lions
For starters, he hasn't dominated in terms of reception share for Detroit. His 29 receptions is tied with Anquan Boldin, is just four greater than Golden Tate, and three greater than Theo Riddick (ankle) who sat out in Week 6. He has the same amount of red-zone targets as Boldin (six). Jones is the undisputed No. 1 receiver in Detroit and leads the team with 47 targets, and while he has saved his fantasy owners with touchdowns in each of his last two games, he had a mere 10 receiving yards on two receptions in Week 6 and has collected just 121 yards combined in his last three games.
Jones' Week 3 explosion (200 yards, two touchdowns) was likely a week-winning type of game but he's been pretty average otherwise. Discounting that game against Green Bay, Jones is averaging just four receptions and about 64 receiving yards per contest.
Jones' upcoming schedule is not very friendly either. The Lions have two games against Minnesota, one against Houston and a bye in the next six weeks, leaving you with maybe three favorable/usable matchups for the rest of the fantasy regular season.
As a mid-round steal, Jones has been nothing short of spectacular so far, but with four touchdowns in his last four games, now is the time to ship him off.
Jay Ajayi, RB, Miami Dolphins
And then the Steelers rolled into Miami and got rolled over by the second-year back for 207 total yards and two touchdowns. That's over 55 percent of his fantasy points right there in a single game.
Ajayi's owners should look to take advantage of this eruption if they need depth, or a more reliable option elsewhere.
Arian Foster, who admittedly looks like a shell of his former self, is gaining his health back. While he's probably not be a feature back any more, fear of a committee in Miami is a real concern. Heck, even Damien Williams got two red-zone carries in Week 6. Yes, coach Adam Gase has said all along that he wants one back to play the role of a bell-cow, which likely means more volume for the hot hand, Ajayi, for the near future but this could be a week-to-week thing, so take advantage of the blow-up game if you see an opportunity in your league to do so.
Despite the Dolphins' Week 6 win, the team still ranks 24th in the NFL in total scoring and 20th or worse in scoring offense, rushing offense, passing offense and third down offense. That doesn't spell consistent production from the backfield going forward.
Matt Jones, RB, Washington Redskins
Maybe Alex Gelhar put it best in his attempt to visualize Matt Jones' fantasy production this season with this tweet:
That's because in true "Whack-A-Mole" fashion, Jones has a good game pretty much every other week. In Weeks 2, 4 and 6 Jones has combined for 338 yards and three touchdowns. In Weeks 1, 3 and 5 Jones combined for 168 total yards and zero scores.
Following Jones' 14 carries for 31 yards in Week 5 (2.2 ypc), coach Jay Gruden said that rookie back Rob Kelley had earned himself the right to more work since he averaged 6.0 ypc in the same game. That resulted in a season-high five touches for Kelley in Week 6 along with nine offensive snaps, his highest snap count of the year thus far. It's miniscule, but it's also a sign that Washington will reward solid play and the coaching staff is not afraid to leave Jones on the sidelines if he struggles.
With Kelly earning more snaps, and Chris Thompson retaining his role as a pass-catching back, Jones' inconsistency is likely to persist in this committee backfield. Trying to predict the big games from the duds for Jones makes him an extremely frustrating fantasy player to own, so see if you can move him for more consistency following his 19-point outing.