The 2019 regular season is over, which means it’s time for trades in fantasy football dynasty leagues. Several players had disappointing seasons, but some are poised for bounce-back campaigns in 2020. These are the best buy low candidates you should be targeting to improve your dynasty team.
Fantasy Football Buy Low Candidates For 2020
It’s hard to think of a bigger quarterback dynasty bust than Baker Mayfield. Following an inspiring 2018, Mayfield was one of the first quarterbacks off the board in 2019 and was supposed to be the quarterback of the present and future for your team. Things didn’t quite work out that way, as Mayfield ended the season as the QB19, behind such players as Derek Carr, Ryan Fitzpatrick, and Philip Rivers.
Mayfield’s season was genuinely horrific, but his future is still bright. The Cleveland Browns were an absolute train wreck under Freddie Kitchens and should be more stable in 2020. Kitchens simply wasn’t ready to run an NFL team, and whoever the Bowns hire in 2020 should represent an upgrade on Kitchens.
The Mayfield and Odell Beckham connection never truly developed in 2019, but it should improve in 2020. Jarvis Landry had a similar slow start in 2018 before becoming Mayfield’s most reliable target in 2019; so the same could happen with Beckham. Mayfield might not be a top-five fantasy quarterback in 2020, but he should have a bounce-back season and should be available for pennies on the dollar.
This is a risk-reward move, as injuries could very well have taken away the last of Cam Newton’s greatness. However, if you’re looking for a high-upside move in the short term, Cam Newton is a perfect trade target. The former first-overall pick missed the vast majority of 2019 with an injury but should be back on the field in 2020. Whether it’s with the Panthers or with somebody else, Newton is going to be a starting quarterback in 2020. At his best, Newton is one of the most athletic quarterbacks in the league and provides an absurd amount of fantasy value with his legs.
If he can stay healthy (big “if”), he’s a week-in, week-out starter at quarterback. The Cam Newton owner will probably take just about anything to get him off their roster, so roll the dice on Cam coming back healthy in 2020.
This is not a vote of confidence in the talent of Sony Michel, but rather the belief that his situation improves dramatically. Like most running backs, Michel is only as good as his surrounding environment. In 2019, that environment wasn’t that great. David Andrews missed the entire season, James Develin only played in two games, and the tight ends couldn’t block to save their lives.
Andrews initially had a three-month diagnosed recovery time for his blood clots, and there haven’t been any reports of a change to that timeline. He should be back in 2020, and James Develin will be right there with him. New England will presumably do something to improve their tight end position, and Tom Brady will probably re-sign with New England in the offseason. Michel isn’t a superstar, but an improved situation in 2020 should make him a locked-and-loaded RB2. Michel disappointed a lot of fantasy owners in 2019 and you should be able to take advantage of the frustrated Sony Michel owner.
For some reason, nobody is talking about Kareem Hunt right now. The embattled running back is one of the most talented all-around runners in the league and managed to carry fantasy relevance while splitting time with Nick Chubb. He’s probably going to earn a job as a lead back in 2020, which just means more touches and more fantasy points. It’s impossible to project his season without knowing where he’ll sign, but he could be an RB1 if he lands in the right situation.
Derrius Guice is a ridiculously talented running back playing under a coach in Ron Rivera who loves to feature running backs. If Guice can stay healthy, he has a chance to put up an RB1 finish. However, Guice has struggled to stay healthy during his NFL career. He tore his ACL as a rookie and suffered multiple knee injuries throughout 2019. That said, he still looked good when he was on the field. It’s not uncommon for running backs to suffer setbacks following an ACL injury (see: Dalvin Cook), but he should have a clean bill of health come September. The upside alone makes it worth rolling the dice on Derrius Guice.
Juju Smith-Schuster had a terrible 2019, but you can easily blame the entire season on Ben Roethlisberger’s injury. Mason Rudolph and Devlin Hodges were among the worst quarterbacks in the league last season and didn’t have the ability to consistently get the ball into Smith-Schuster’s hands. Roethlisberger wants to come back in 2020, which means Smith-Schuster should have a bounce-back season. Even if Roethlisberger can’t make a full recovery, the Steelers are going to make sure they have a better plan at quarterback in 2020. Whether it’s Ben Roethlisberger or an experienced backup like Marcus Mariota, Smith-Schuster should have a trustworthy quarterback in 2020.
Curtis Samuel should have had a fantastic season last year. The third-year wide receiver won the vast majority of his routes and was always open downfield. However, Kyle Allen simply wasn’t good enough to connect on anything over 15 yards downfield. According to Airyards.com, Samuel had the largest discrepancy between actual receiving yards and air yards. This means the Panthers tried to get the ball into Samuels’ hands, but the quarterback just couldn’t get the job done. The Panthers are going to do something to make sure Kyle Allen isn’t the quarterback in 2020, so Samuel should have a huge season with improved quarterback play.
A.J. Green didn’t play a snap in 2019 and has a long history of injuries. He certainly carries his fair share of risk and isn’t a smart trade if your dynasty team is currently in rebuild mode. However, if you’re looking for a short-term guy to win a championship in 2020 or 2021, A.J. Green is your guy. Green is still one of the best wide receivers in the league when on the field and is entering free agency. If he returns to the Bengals, he’ll probably be catching passes from a stud rookie quarterback in Joe Burrow. If he leaves, he’s probably going to sign with a team that already has an answer at quarterback. Injuries are always a concern, but he should give you top performance when on the field and should cost next-to-nothing to acquire.
Honorable Mention: T.J. Hockenson
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