*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
Carlos Hyde Trade Analysis (and bonus Doug Martin info)…
The first two things that come to mind about the Carlos Hyde trade…
1) If all these football ‘insiders’ are so plugged in…why wasn’t this trade being discussed/debated prior? Why is it a mild ‘shocker’ to the media? Has an insider ever been far ahead of a big trade story (not an obvious trade story)?
NFL ‘insiders’ either get used by teams to push/leak news out to get trade interest going or, for the most part, the ‘trade rumors’ are made up by them just assuming A needs B, so maybe they’ll trade for ___. The Jags didn’t have an obvious ‘need’ to the mainstream, so no rumors from them…because THEY think T.J. Yeldon is the ‘cat’s meow’.
This is why my ‘insider’ was more reliable – he knew something was happening with the Jags backfield, but he saw the Jamaal Charles push solution. It may have been a planned JC push, until the Jags were able to strip the Browns of a legit NFL RB.
2) Why do we all get so crazy over fantasy running backs and worrying about our RB2s and our perceived depth week-to-week? What other position is turned over so quickly and offers so many wild options week-to-week? In the last few days, Tevin Coleman became a front-line starter. Latavius Murray is ‘the guy’ for now. Nick Chubb now a starter. Carlos Hyde in demand. Doug Martin suddenly in demand.
The pinball action from the Hyde trade, and as a bonus…a look at the Marshawn Lynch injury:
CLEVELAND – Obviously, Nick Chubb becomes a starter. If you were FF-bored with Hyde, you might be really bored with Chubb. He needs blocking/holes…and he’s not likely to get that consistently with the Browns. Hyde wasn’t getting those holes (3.4 ypc YTD), he just gritted out TDs to be FF-viable. Hyde’s been fading in touches with Baker Mayfield at the helm…and not to Chubb, just general fading.
Chubb was a flop in the preseason. A flop to start the season, and had 2-3 nice runs in VERY limited action the last two weeks…now, with almost no real ‘work’/grooming leading up – Chubb gets the whole backfield. In redraft, I’m selling Chubb ASAP as an RB1-1.5 valuation before people get their bubble burst on this. Maybe he will be an RB1.5-2.0…I’ll just take an established RB1.5 in exchange right now and let someone else find out if it’s true…in redraft. In dynasty, RB1 ‘sell high’ extraction ASAP.
I don’t love what I’ve seen from Chubb…but any RBs getting 15+ touches matters in fantasy. Cleveland is a bad place to try to ‘matter’ when you’ve shown signs that you’re an incomplete runner.
BUT R.C.!!!! THEY LOVE THIS KID. Yes, they really do…that’s why he played about 3 snaps a game this year. They can’t get enough of him. This is the GM forcing Hue to play Chubb by removing Hyde. A sign that the Hue firing is right around the corner. A few more losses and it could happen in-season.
Duke Johnson gets a little bump because he gets the targets still, and maybe more carries if Chubb is failing at all, or just needs more time.
JACKSONVILLE – I feel the same way many Leonard Fournette owners do with this news…this is not good for his 2018 prognosis. In fact, it may be the nail in the coffin that this is going up and past Week 10…and then a ‘split’ upon return.
Hyde going to Jacksonville evokes two distinct feelings from people. Either (A) Yes, Hyde is the man for the Jags right now!! (B) We know T.J. Yeldon is so good (because the football establishment keeps telling us this), so Hyde is going to a bad place -- to a split with TJY in boring Jacksonville. Yuck.
If the current Hyde owner is in the ‘yuck, this is a split’ ideology…I’ll try to get Hyde very cheap from them. Because this move wasn’t to bolster the backfield with a Hyde-Yeldon split – if you’re Jacksonville, you get Hyde because you know you’re a playoff team and you know (a) Yeldon blows (they’ve seen this often) and/or (b) You need Fournette insurance because his return is not looking good.
When (if/2018) Fournette comes back, it’s not like Hyde just goes and sits on the bench. This situation is a total mess for fantasy.
If Fournette doesn’t come back, Hyde is an RB 1.5-2.0 candidate for the ROS. However, no Fournette…and Jamaal Charles is going to suck down some touches too…or Yeldon…or ‘and’ Yeldon.
Hyde is not an aged, overpriced veteran that a team dumps – he was a top free agent RB in 2018. He has a reasonable contract. He played well for the disastrous Browns offense/O-Line. The Jags now have two top NFL RBs in hand, Hyde and Fournette. It’s genius by the Jags and what the idiotic Browns do…spend up for a free agent RB then draft one highly and have a deep backfield, but then trade the established best one because…why? Reasons? What…they get a 5th-round pick? They won’t draft anything worthwhile with it, so who cares? Hyde was not a contract problem to dump…but Cleveland wouldn’t be Cleveland if they weren’t Cleveland. The Browns have so much CAP space it’s silly. They could’ve kept Hyde rolling into 2019 and worked Chubb up slowly.
The Browns are a playoff team in talent (not coaching) that just, essentially, declared…we aren’t going to make a serious run at the playoffs.
The Jags now have two legit #1 NFL RBs on the roster…great for NFL operations, terrible for fantasy trying to figure out what they’ll do when Fournette returns.
Obviously, Jamaal Charles moves onto the next place in a week or two (if Fournette comes back). With the way RBs live and die, he’ll be a starter for another NFL team we’re all chasing in a few weeks.
OAKLAND – Doug Martin was the Nick Chubb of the Raiders, in a sense. He barely played/touched the ball like Chubb for the first six weeks…but is now ‘the guy’. Martin has looked fine on tape. He has a lot to prove to the NFL. He’s getting his chance the next few weeks.
Of Hyde, Chubb, Fournette, Duke…I might want Martin for the next 3-4 weeks over all of them. IF he’s getting the full shot, which he should. Gruden loves veteran players and Jalen Richard-DeAndre Washington are not main carry guys.
The Martin risk is…do they bring in any interesting RBs from the outside? Not likely if Lynch is really returning. There’s also a chance Oakland trades Lynch for a conditional pick to like the Patriots…the Pats can afford to wait it out and see if he can get healthy for the stretch run. Martin’s time as starter may be a lot longer than they say today.
Jalen Richard? Same role as before…maybe a few more carries here and there?
Martin is potentially going to get more carries + targets than Hyde, or Chubb, or Yeldon, or Fournette, et al. the next few weeks.