Editor’s Note: Vernon Davis will not receive fantasy points for the NFL contests this weekend (November 8th).
Firstly, why don’t more trades like this happen in the NFL? There was one freaking deal at the deadline and this was it. We need more trades like this in the NFL! Find a way to help teams with cap hits so they’re more inclined to bring in big time players via in-season trades. You thought the NFL got a lot of attention now? Imagine a MLB/NBA style trade deadline?
Vernon Davis isn’t the player that he once was, but he’s still a big name. Deadline deals like this are exciting for both fans of the teams involved, and all of us in the fantasy community. Big names are moved at the trade deadline in every other major league, so I guess I’ve just never understood why NFL teams don’t follow suite. Why not upgrade an area of need while you still can?
Anyway, before I ramble if I haven’t begun to already, let’s dive into the fantasy impact of Davis trading in the only uniform he’s ever known to join forced with Peyton Manning in Denver.
At the cost of a few late round draft picks, this is a great gamble by John Elway and the Broncos. Owen Daniels wasn’t working out at TE in Denver’s system, despite recording a season-high 44 yards in Sunday’s victory over the Packers (not too impressive). Davis hasn’t been much better, but had gone over 60 yards twice despite the dumpster fire going on in San Francisco.
Looking strictly at the current statistics, Davis is a slight upgrade for Peyton and crew. So even if Davis plays to his floor in Denver, it’s a good move. But let’s allow ourselves to live not too far back in the past for a moment, shall we?
Over the 2013 and 2014 seasons, Manning was able to turn the unknown Julius Thomas into a massive weapon in his offense — to the tune of 1,277 yards and 24 touchdowns. In 2013, Davis matched a career-high of his own with 13 touchdowns to go along with 850 yards.
The point is, Manning and Davis are not far removed from elite production as far as QB/TE tandems go. That doesn’t necessarily mean anything, but it could.
Both players are older, the Denver defense is rolling, and the running game appears to be on track. But there’s also a glimpse of hope that Davis could become a valuable piece in Manning’s offense, especially in the red zone. Don’t expect the kind of magic we got in 2013 from either, but Davis could be a sneaky good fit in Denver for the second half of the season.
Davis still has to learn the playbook and earn his snaps over Daniels, so he’s a risky play right out of the gate. Let’s sit back and see how this works itself out, but the top-10 TE potential is there.
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