While fantasy football is still a month-plus away, it’s never to early to start preparing. The Eagles have a number of interesting players who could be valuable contributors in fantasy- or end up being a bust that sinks your championship dreams. Let’s see who you should be eyeing up, or looking to avoid.
DeVonta Smith: Stock Up
The Eagles finally a receiver who can stretch the field and make the big plays. But there are some things to consider before you go penciling him into your lineup.
There are a lot of positives when looking at Smith. One is that he won’t be competing for targets. He’ll immediately become the team’s WR1, so you won’t have to worry about him being overshadowed by anyone else.
There are some concerns, obviously. The Eagles’ offense was one of the worst in the league last season, and if that happens again, Smith could suffer as a result.
Additionally, while Smith’s history of production suggests that him contributing will come sooner rather than later, first-round receivers’ stats can sometimes be a crapshoot in year one.
Even if you’re high on Smith, don’t overdraft him and slot him as your WR2. As of now, he should be looked at as an interesting flex play depending on the week. If you’re drafting in a dynasty league, then he’s a sure-fire second-to-third round pick.
Zach Ertz: Stock Down
Just as Zach Ertz was firmly planting himself as a top-three tight end in the NFL, everything came crashing down. Ertz’s injury troubles last season, coupled with his mediocre play when healthy, has made him a huge question mark heading into the regular season.
The verdict here is to leave him alone if he’s still on the Eagles by the time Week One comes along. Dallas Goedert would be the fans’ #1 TE choice, but the Eagles will likely want to keep both TEs involved in the game plans.
Thus, it’ll be tough to say who would be getting more looks and playing time in any given situation.
If Ertz is traded before your draft, then it becomes a different situation. I believe he still has a lot left in him. He’s still just 30, and one down-season shouldn’t be the end of the world.
If anything, he’ll become one of the best high-risk, high-reward fliers in the draft. If you’re that kind of fantasy player, then you should definitely keep an eye on any potential Ertz news and rumors.
Dallas Goedert: Middling Stock
Goedert is in fantasy limbo right now. The good news is that fourth-year tight end will get plenty of looks and playing time. In all regards, he’s the Eagles #1 TE, and will definitely earn that title in the coming season.
However, just as Ertz remaining in Philadelphia will hurt him, it will also hurt Goedert. As just explained, both players will be splitting time. Goedert is the likelier of the two to finish with higher stat totals across the board, but he’ll be a riskier TE1 than some others due to that competition.
Goedert is also coming off a season where he appeared in 11 games, the lowest of his career. I wouldn’t expect the injuries to continue hamper him, but it’s worth remembering.
If you’re drafting in dynasty, I would put Goedert higher on the rankings. Last year, the Eagles’ future at TE was still unclear. Now, even if Ertz remains in Philly this season, it will be his last. Barring the team letting him walk in free agency, Goedert looks to be the team’s next unquestioned TE1.
Jalen Hurts: Stock Up
Hurts will be a fun player to watch this year. He’s got a new offense that could mix things up for the better, and he’s got some new weapons to play with. But is he worth adding to your team?
I would say yes. Hurts is appealing in fantasy for his dual-threat capabilities. Hurts could run up the numbers if he’s able to get going with his legs: in the four games he started last year, the Oklahoma product averaged 11.5 rushing attempts and 68 rushing yards.
If Hurts is able to improve his passing, he’ll make for a very viable QB to plug in and play. I think Hurts probably falls into the 15th-20th range in the quarterback rankings, and would make him one of the better backup QBs you could nab.
Miles Sanders: Stock Down
I, along with so many others, drafted Sanders last year thinking he would be in store for a breakout season. That did not happen.
Sanders was a mixed bag. He put up 867 yards in 12 games and had six touchdowns, both career-highs. However, his receiving total dropped by 312 yards from 2019 to 2020.
While his rushing numbers weren’t bad by any means, his production over the season did not match up with where he was drafted (typically first or second round).
I would advise not buying into Sanders as an RB1 this season. Yes, there are some reasons to say otherwise. Nick Sirianni’s offense could mean more carries for Sanders.
That could very well be the case, but drafting Sanders like that’s a given could end up hurting you in the long-run. Try to target Sanders as an RB2- you’ll save yourself a lot of disappointment, and you’ll end up with a much better player as your top back.