Just when you think you know what Chip Kelly is thinking, you have absolutely no idea.
The NFL community was caught off guard by the Philadelphia Eagles parting ways with their 26 year old Pro-Bowl RB. LeSean McCoy is being sent to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for LB Kiko Alonso, a former Oregon Duck under Kelly.
This move, without a doubt, has something to do with the draft rumors of the Eagles trying to trade up to get former Oregon QB standout, Marcus Mariota. After the dust settles, the Eagles will have cleared up over $25M in cap space by dealing McCoy and by releasing Cary Williams and Trent Cole. This is merely speculation, but I believe the Eagles will attempt to re-sign WR Jeremy Maclin to a long-term deal to give Mariota some firepower on offense, assuming they do in fact, trade up to take him.
What does this mean for Fantasy Football Players?
Well, I’m glad you asked. If there was ever any doubt if McCoy is still worth a first-round pick after the somewhat mediocre 2014 season, this move erases that. The Bills ran the ball so much last season, that it made guys like Anthony “Boobie” Dixon and Bryce Brown fantasy relevant. The Bills ran the ball 154 times over their last six games, averaging over 25 attempts per game. You can’t really blame the team for running so much when your only options to throw the ball are Kyle Orton and EJ Manuel.
Veteran Fred Jackson was a solid fantasy option most of the season, but his age (34) is clearly catching up to him. For those of you that don’t already know, 34 is ancient in RB years. You can expect that his role will deviate to strictly goal-line duties with McCoy handling the major workload. If McCoy is available any time after Round 1 in your fantasy drafts, it’s an absolute steal. The addition of McCoy should also free up some space to let sophomore sensation, Sammy Watkins, run wild. So, feel free to give Watkins a small bump in value on those draft boards this off-season.
As for the Eagles, it is hard to say exactly how this will affect fantasy performances as they are clearly not done making moves. The team knows that Darren Sproles cannot handle the workload of a premiere back, and I am curious to see who they will go after in the draft and free agency to address their need at the RB position. Until then, Kelly will leave us all scratching our heads, wondering what the mastermind has up his sleeves in the upcoming months.
Categories: Fantasy Football