Whether you set the tone last week and got out to a 1-0 start or you took the L and joined half of your league that sits at 0-1, it’s always trade season when it comes to dynasty fantasy football.
Is it just me or does it feel pretty damn good to be back into the loving arms of the regular season? I’m a big fan of exploring trade options all throughout the calendar year, but there’s something about making a deal during the regular season that provides a little more juice. I’m guessing it’s the fact that you can turn around and use that player already the next week versus making a deal in March and waiting five months to see how things play out.
Before we get started… please keep in mind that the trade candidates in this weekly article aren’t going to be beneficial for each individual dynasty team. Some players will be targeted for the sole purpose of attempting to win now while others will be targeted as buy-low options. So please, keep some perspective before coming at me in a few weeks when I tell you to trade for the likes of Adam Thielen or another 30+ year-old player.
With that being said, here’s a look at some players I recommend targeting via trade as we head into Week 2 of the 2021 NFL season.
Michael Gallup, WR, Dallas Cowboys
This acquisition is obviously not going to pay any dividends in the near future, but based on how well Dak Prescott and the Cowboys’ offense performed in the season opener against Tampa, I’m going to attempt to go after some targets in this offense. If you can afford to make a move for Gallup now, you may be able to capitalize on a player that will not only benefit you throughout your run to and through the playoffs this season, but also in the future as Gallup is set to test free agency after this year and will likely land on a team with a receiver room that’s not quite as crowded as the one he’s currently in. Before his injury, Gallup had played a similar number of snaps as Amari Cooper, and actually out snapped CeeDee Lamb. I’m not saying this is going to be guaranteed weekly as it appears Dallas is going to move these guys around frequently in different formations with varying snap counts, but I am confident enough in saying that 1-2 of this trio of receivers will be fantasy relevant on a weekly basis (once Gallup returns). You may take a few lumps along the way as Cooper and Dak have incredible chemistry and Lamb is the team’s future at the position, but if you’re in need of a flex player or high-quality bench guy that you’re not nervous about inserting into your starting lineup, Gallup’s your guy.
Mike Gesicki, TE, Miami Dolphins
Don’t overspend for the Dolphins’ tight end, but if your league’s current owner is upset about Gesicki playing just over 20 snaps on Sunday against New England, this week is the time to pounce. His low usage can be chalked up to the Dolphins’ game plan for keeping a tight end inline to block, and while this game plan will likely be executed a few more times throughout the season, we’re not going to have too many more games where Gesicki plays just 21 snaps and fails to catch a pass. Gesicki and Tua Tagovailoa showed solid chemistry all offseason, and while Gesicki may not be the guy you want to rely on as a weekly starter at the position, he’ll 100% suffice if you need to give him the call up to the starting lineup throughout the season. A top-8 tight end finish is still very doable despite Week 1’s goose egg.
Terry McLaurin, WR, Washington Football Team
A lot of hype this offseason surrounding McLaurin was due to the fact that Ryan Fitzpatrick was going to be the one airing it out to him on a weekly basis. While Fitzpatrick isn’t the ideal quarterback you want leading your favorite NFL team, he’s proven to be a pretty good option over the years for the receivers on your fantasy team. After suffering a hip injury in the season opener, Fitzpatrick is being replaced by Taylor Heinicke who we don’t have much of a sample size on in regards to fantasy football relevancy. If you’re in win-now mode this trade may not be for you. However, if you’re in the middle of a rebuild and you can offer a player that may be nearing the end of his prime to your league’s current McLaurin owner, it may be worth looking into. McLaurin has put up solid fantasy numbers throughout his career despite less-than-ideal quarterback play, so I’m fairly comfortable with his long-term outlook regardless of what Washington does at the QB position next year. Take the lumps this year and be ready to compete in ’22.
Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers
I was all in favor of trading for Williams prior to the season starting, and his week-one performance against Washington only solidified my desire to trade for Williams even more. The only issue now is that your league’s current owner may be less inclined to ship him out after his 8-82-1 performance on Sunday as Justin Herbert targeted him 12 times (just one less than Keenan Allen). Talent has never been an issue for Williams as we all know injuries has been his fantasy Achilles’ heel (pun intended), so I’m still willing to bet that your league’s current Williams owner has had his/her fair share of screaming sessions regarding his availability over the years. Maybe there’s a chance that your league’s current Williams owner will continue to hold his previous injury history against him and see his week-one performance as a chance to “sell high”, and if this happens to be the case, I’m not against starting the negotiation phase and seeing where it goes.
Trey Sermon, RB, San Francisco 49ers
When I made this week’s list it had not been confirmed yet that Raheem Mostert was expected to miss eight weeks, but even though that’s now public knowledge, it still may be worth sending an offer to your league’s current Sermon owner. Sermon was a healthy scratch as we saw the 49ers turn to sixth-round RB Elijah Mitchell and JaMycal Hasty over the player they traded up to draft in the third round back in April. I’m chalking this up as Sermon being in head coach Kyle Shanahan’s doghouse and the coach more so trying to send a message Sermon’s way as a motivational tactic. It’ll be hard to pull Sermon away from your league’s current owner, but if he/she happens to be one that overreacts to early-season playing time and performance, you may be able to pull off a bit of a steal here.