Fantasy Football Instant Reaction: Tyrod Taylor the big winner in Bills' trade for Kelvin Benjamin
The Carolina Panthers traded Kelvin Benjamin to the Buffalo Bills at the deadline. No one is a bigger winner than Tyrod Taylor.
As far as the player that is actually involved in the trade, this feels like a fairly lateral move for Benjamin. You may lose him for Week 9 (the Bills play on Thursday night) but it would essentially be his bye week because the Panthers bye isn't until later in the year and the Bills already had their bye.
Benjamin instantly becomes the top target on the team, which could help his volume, but he'll also have to learn a new offense on the fly, which isn't great. I'd still view him as a No. 2 Fantasy receiver with upside, who is better in standard leagues than he is in PPR.
But that doesn't mean there aren't winners in this trade:
- Tyrod Taylor was a borderline No. 1 quarterback without Benjamin. This is a boon for his Fantasy value and I would view him as a guy you're going to start more often than not moving forward.
- Devin Funchess lost targets last week but this should now be secure his role in the offense and the red zone. Funchess should be a high-volume, low-efficiency borderline No. 2 wide receiver. He has more value over the next month until Greg Olsen returns. I understand if you were considering dropping Funchess this morning but he definitely needs to be kept on a roster now.
- The biggest winner may just be Christian McCaffrey. McCaffrey has already seen huge volume in the passing game and now it wouldn't be surprising to see him average double-digit targets rest of season. He's still a low-end No. 2 running back in standard leagues, but in PPR he'll push top ten rest of season.
- Russell Shepard and Curtis Samuel should see more work with Benjamin gone but it's hard to see either having a major Fantasy impact.
The main loser in this deal is Cam Newton, but he hadn't been very good lately anyway. Until Olsen returns, Newton will command a predictable offense with Funchess and McCaffrey as his only reliable weapons. When Olsen returns Newton could regain some value, but it may be too late in the Fantasy season for that to matter.
On the Bills side of the equation, Zay Jones, Andre Holmes and Jordan Matthews would technically be losers as well, but from a Fantasy perspective they've been losers all season. It's just piling on to talk anymore about how bad they've been. Matthews could be a boom-or-bust flex on Thursday night if Benjamin is inactive but for the most part you can cut these guys.
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