You’ll get a lot of advice in fantasy football and one of the common ones is when a journey man player gets hot, you’ll hear “trade high while you can”. I’m not an advocate of this.
ADVANTAGES OF PLAYING 16 OR FEWER REGULAR SEASON GAMES
The NFL is an opportunity league. Compared to baseball and basketball regular seasons, the sample size for production is a lot smaller. Catching lightning in a bottle in week 3 (due to injury or a benching) and running with that momentum is more sustainable. New scouting reports are coming in, but teams have game plans that coaches still want to stubbornly follow. This means the 1-year wonder is a common occurrence in the NFL.
RECENT FANTASY FOOTBALL ONE YEAR WONDERS
In 2010, Peyton Hillis started the season as ½ of a running back by committee and ended up dominating the last 2/3 of the regular season as a full time back. His output per game was at a RB1 level. He totaled over 1,600 yards from scrimmage and scored 13 touchdowns. That same year, an undrafted rookie running back named LeGarrette Blount rushed over 1,000 yards and scored 6 touchdowns after not seeing much playing time in the first quarter of the season. Blount has been a career back up since.
The concept of the 1-year wonder also applies to receivers. In 2011, Laurent Robinson had 54 catches, 854 yards, and 11 touchdowns as the number 3 receiver for the Cowboys. He did start several games because of various injuries to Miles Austin, but Robinson was effective even when Austin returned. In both Hillis’ and Robinson’s situations, injuries provided the opportunity of playing time. But to their credit, they provided top fantasy statistics when given the chance. They stayed healthy and put up good weekly numbers. The moral here, ride the hot hand and see it through. Don’t let another fantasy player gain the fruits of a good 1-year wonder player that you discovered.