Monday night came with some hot news from America's team, as the Cowboys announced they signed their franchise QB, Dak Prescott, to a four-year deal worth over $160 million. The contract includes $126 million guaranteed. This signifies the end to a situation that has been brewing for the better part of two years.
Last year, Dak played on the franchise tag, as both parties were unable to reach an agreement prior to the 2020 season. Five weeks into the year, Prescott suffered a gruesome injury. The injury ended the QB's season, as well as the playoff hopes for the Dallas Cowboys. Dak's injury while on the franchise tag led fans of the organization, the media, and players from around the league to criticize Jerry Jones for not getting a long-term deal done with their star QB.
This is great news for fantasy football players. On this week's podcast, Amp and I talked about how Dak was likely staying in Dallas, but now that it is a for sure thing, you can trust your Cowboys again for fantasy purposes. The Cowboys with and without Dak, were like night and day offensively.
Elliot had a noticeable decline in fantasy production in 2020. When Dak was playing, Zeke had an averaged 23 fantasy points per game. Without Dak, that cut in half to 11.8 points per game. Attempts, receptions, targets, touchdowns, yards, they all went down without the Prescott leading the offense.
The utilization of Tony Pollard was also more prevalent to end the year, which also had a negative impact on Zeke's fantasy performance. However, going into 2021, I see Elliot getting back into that upper level of RB production and he will likely be at a discounted price.
Cooper & Lamb
Amari Cooper finished as the WR15 in PPR formats in 2020, despite the circus at quarterback. Cooper also had a massive drop in production once Dak left, dropping from 17.8 PPG to 13.4 PPG. From weeks one to five, while Dak was healthy, Cooper was the WR8. From week five on, Amari was the WR29.
CeeDee Lamb is a talented rookie wide receiver out of Oklahoma, who hoped to make a splash in his rookie year while wearing the famous number 88. Without Dak, Lamb was WR28, but with Dak in the lineup he was WR11. Lamb was not impervious to the situation under center, either.
A clear bounce back is coming for Amari and CeeDee, and like Zeke, they might come at a discount going into the 2021 season. I will be targeting Dallas' offensive players in the offseason in dynasty leagues and in redraft formats.