Dynasty Buy-Low Target: Julian Edelman
If you’re a contending team, it’s time to buy Julian Edelman in dynasty leagues. With all of the buzz surrounding Brandin Cooks and the incoming RBs, the WR1 on the New England Patriots roster is flying under the radar and has become a value.
Now with a two-year contract extension secured, Edelman can remain Tom Brady’s top WR option through the 2019 season.
According to the RotoViz Dynasty ADP app, Edelman is currently being drafted as WR37 (79th overall) in dynasty start up drafts and he’s been on a steady decline since the start of 2016.
Edelman is also acquirable via trade at a reasonable price. Using the trade calculator function of the Dynasty ADP App, Edelman is roughly valued as the ninth rookie pick.
Using the DLF Trade Database, here are three recent trades that were made to acquire Edelman.
|Team A||Team B|
|Julian Edelman||Isaiah Crowell|
|Julian Edelman||Eli Rogers
|Julian Edelman||John Ross|
While this shows a wider range of prices than simply the 1.09 rookie pick, it does show that high-value assets are unlikely to be required to complete a trade for Edelman. Based on RotoViz Dynasty ADP, Isaiah Crowell is valued at RB17 in start ups, Eli Rogers is WR102, and John Ross is WR40. For a contending team, giving up one of these in exchange for a proven commodity is reasonable.
Using data from the RotoViz Projection Machine, since 2011, either Wes Welker or Edelman has been the WR1 for the Patriots offense. On average, during that span, they received 24.4 percent of the available targets, including the 2014 season when Edelman missed seven games.
While many have projected Cooks as the WR1 for the 2017 season, his career volume points toward a role as the WR2 in the Patriot offense. During his three seasons, Cooks has averaged a 15.8 percent target share. Over the last six seasons, the Patriots’ WR2 has averaged 15.5 percent. It seems reasonable to expect both Edelman and Cooks to keep their traditional market shares, rather than expecting them to switch roles.
While making projections for the offense, I examined Edelman’s 16 game paces for each of his four seasons as the lead WR to account for his missed time. Over that span, he has averaged a 26.1 percent target share and has peaked at 29.5 percent. Even with an expected decrease due to incoming talent and a healthy Rob Gronkowski, I projected Edelman to receive 23.5 percent of available targets. With 582 projected pass attempts for Brady, that gives Edelman approximately 136 targets for the season.
As the WR1 for the Patriots offense, Edelman has been a consistent WR2 in PPR scoring.
|Player||Year||Games||PPR||PPR PPG||PPR Finish||PPR PPG Finish|
Edelman is as close to a sure thing to produce as a top 24 WR as there is in the NFL. Even including his injury plagued 2015 season, he has averaged a finish of WR20 in PPR formats and removing 2015 improves that number to WR15. And from a per game perspective, he improves his stock even further, averaging WR14 during his four seasons as the lead WR in New England.
For a dynasty team in contention, Edelman is an affordable asset via trade. By offering a mid-to-late first round rookie pick, you can obtain a reliable receiver who is still in line for targets from Tom Brady for the next three seasons. My current projection for Edelman’s 2017: