Dynasty Fantasy Football: Zach Ertz, When to Hold and When to Fold
Timing is everything. In Dynasty leagues the old cliché holds true. Assets appreciate and depreciate rapidly and forward-thinking GMs are tasked with reacting instantly. Our role is to do our best to project the future and to fashion our teams in a manner that allows us to take advantage of the dynamic nature of this game we all enjoy… to know when to hold our assets, and when to fold them. In this series we’ll look at a few appreciating and depreciating assets and give a reasoned take on what the proper actions moving forward are. Let’s dive into Zach Ertz.
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Buy or Sell Zach Ertz in Dynasty?
Zac Ertz wasn’t just one of the more heavily targeted TEs in the league last season, he broke records. Accounting for ALL positions, Ertz ranked sixth leaguewide in targets and broke the top 30 when it came to air yards (The only TE this side of Travis Kelce to reach that mark) accrued over the season. He did this while seeing the league’s most red-zone targets and seeing the 11th most yards of cushion off the line. Defenses feared him.
Why then, would I consider Zach Ertz a FOLD in dynasty leagues?
The bigger picture.
Howie Roseman and the front office in Philadelphia are the real reason the Eagles took home the championship in 2017. And it’s their demonstrated shrewd moves over the last couple of years that have had me thinking Ertz may not don the green and white much longer. In just the course of a couple of offseasons, the old guard have all got a partner of note in their respective position groups up and down the offense if you look closely.
37-year-old LT Jason Peters will have to play nice with Andre Dillard.
29-year-old WR Alshon Jeffery must be friends with JJ ar-THAY-gah Whiteside
And Zach Ertz, who will be 29 this season, must contend once again with last year’s newcomer, Dallas Goedert.
As if a 24-year-old who is bigger than Ertz, can play inline, and boasts elite-level athleticism isn’t a problem all his own, Goedert has already had a smooth transition into the league. In Goedert’s rookie year he was a top 30 TE in yards per target, catch rate, a-dot, and cushion. And next season he will be much cheaper than the veteran.
If you take a look at Zach Ertz’ contract details below you’ll see that his cap hit, the largest of his career to date, is set to double next season. (Spotrac.com)
— Etan Mozia (@EtanMozia) July 19, 2019
While the Eagles were a 12 personnel team at the second highest rate last season (a figure which should logically improve this season) as shown below… (SharpFootballStats.com)
— Etan Mozia (@EtanMozia) July 19, 2019
… the money says that the Eagles may be better served riding the rookie contract in the not so distant future.
While there is no way to know for sure how a Philadelphia departure will affect Ertz’s numbers we can definitively say that he is one of just a handful of #1 targets at the TE position in the NFL. That could change on his next team.
To mitigate risk is part and parcel of sound dynasty strategy and for this reason it may be wise to begin to field offers for the superstar TE in his prime. His value may never be higher again.
Etan Mozia has been involved with sports as a whole for over two decades and has written about athletics in some capacity since 2005. Focused primarily on the NFL and EPL, Etan has seen his work featured on sites like FantasyPros, Advanced Sports Logic, and FFD260 among others. Currently, his work is housed on FantraxHQ and FantasyPros. An avid lover of dynasty leagues specifically, you can also listen to him on his podcast, The Dynasty Diagnostic (@DynoDiagnostic), as he breaks down rosters and provides pertinent and practical advice for dynasty squads looking to give their team an edge. Follow him on twitter @EtanMozia.
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