From time to time, NFL players will switch teams. It’s part of the game; it’s something that free agency allows them to do. But when they do it, they risk messing something up that is very important to the fans.
No, not the chemistry and championship potential of their former team. These players risk messing up their fantasy value. Of course, at the same time, they could boost their fantasy value if they join the right team.
During the offseason, several quarterbacks switched teams either through free agency or trades. Out of all of them, six will likely start for their respective teams next season.
Some will undoubtedly be worth more on the fantasy market than others:
Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings: Even though he didn’t have much to work with in Washington last season, he was still one of the top six quarterbacks in fantasy football. With the Vikings, he is going to have two of the best young wide receivers, an excellent tight end, and a running back that can catch. The only thing that could work against him is the fact his running back can, well—run.
But the Vikings didn’t guarantee him $84 million to hand off to Dalvin Cook.
Case Keenum, Denver Broncos: Once again, Keenum will have the opportunity to work with a great pair of receivers. Last season it was Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen; in 2018 it will be Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. If the Broncos can develop a running game, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him do even better this season.
Alex Smith, Washington Redskins: Last season, he was a top-five fantasy football quarterback and probably helped a lot of people win their championships. But this season, he’s going to be top-15 at best. The talent he had in Kanas City made him who he was in 2017. He’s not going to have comparable talent with the Redskins next season.
A.J. McCarron, Buffalo Bills: McCarron’s value is going to see the most significant boost. But that is only because he had no value last season in Cincinnati. But he doesn’t have much to work with in Buffalo, so his value is not going to be great. If the matchup is right, he’s a bye week replacement at best.
Sam Bradford, Arizona Cardinals: With Larry Fitzgerald and a healthy David Johnson you’d think someone with Bradford’s ability would be valued more. But you can’t trust him to stay healthy. You’re almost better off betting on him getting injured at some point during the season (probably when you need him the most) than starting him.
Tyrod Taylor, Cleveland Browns: It would be nice to believe in Taylor next season. He’s an incredible athlete that can certainly make magic happen. A decent passer, he’ll have two good receivers to work with (Josh Gordon and Jarvis Landry) and a decent tight end (David Njoku).
But this is the Browns we’re talking about. If there is a way to mess things up, they’ll find it.