Three weeks into the 2011 fantasy football season, and so much seems upside down.
How in the world is preseason consensus No. 1 tight end Antonio Gates currently 29th at the position in PPR scoring? Or Hakeem Nicks, a collective top five before Week 1 now sitting at 27th? And that Arian Foster guy you drafted No. 1 overall? How exactly does he have just five measly points, nearly a quarter of the way through our fantasy regular season?
Whatever your current record looks like, there is no doubt that values in the 2011 season are all over the place. This means, of course, that there are values to be had on the trade front. Here are some of the buy low candidates you need to be considering. (Don't miss my previous buy low discussions: Week 2, Week 3)
Hakeem Nicks, NYG.
After a decent 7-for-122 performance against the Redskins in Week 1, Nicks has hit some statistical roadblocks. Injury, change in offensive strategy and the Eagles' vaunted secondary have hampered Hakeem to a point where he suddenly holds some trade value.
He will still finish in the upper echelon of fantasy receiver. The schedule for the foreseeable future is very savory for Nicks and the rest of the Giants' receivers. If you can get Nicks at a discounted price, do it by all means!
Rashard Mendenhall, PIT.
He was one of my buy low last week heading into a Colts game, where I expected him to blow up in a good way, statistically. That never happened, and I find myself much more skeptical of Mendenhall, especially in PPR leagues.
However, his owner in your own league is probably feeling just as disgruntled and may be willing to swing a deal moving Mendenhall at a much discounted price. The plus here is that he is still the unquestioned main guy in the backfield. Isaac Redman is OK, but far in the rearview mirror. It also helps that the Steelers have a mostly great slate for running backs the rest of the way, especially in the fantasy playoffs.
DeAngelo Williams, CAR.
First things first, I personally think DeAngelo’s time as an elite RB in the league is past him. That being said, he’s been so terrible the first three weeks of this season that his owners are bailing ship at a Titanic rate. So much so, in fact, that I’ve seen him dropped in a few competitive leagues.
At this point, if you can get him for a deep bench player on your roster, go for it and leave him to ripen on your bench. He may never start a game for you, but when he does turn in a solid outing at some point this season, you’ll make a good profit off of him.
Sam Bradford, STL.
Almost as frustrating for fantasy owners has been the play of Sam Bradford. Just 685 yards and two TDs through three weeks is far from what many expected out of the sophomore signal caller, who had a much better offense around him and an offensive coordinator who loves to pencil in big plays.
On the positive for Bradford is the fact that he had just one measly interception to date… and that came when Danario Alexander was stumbling.
Bradford still has the talent around him and the schedule ahead to right the ship, and can be had at a very discounted price.
Dez Bryant, DAL.
He’s young, uber-talented and on an offense that should be able to move the ball vertically at will, yet Bryant has been slowed this season due to a quad injury and overall inconsistency.
The fact remains that he is maturing at the NFL level into a solid receiving option and while Tony Romo has favored Miles Austin in that offense most weeks, Austin has been sidelined with injury. Bryant will continue to emerge, and you’ll want to snag him now before that value changes.
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