Sunny With a Change
Demonstrating some impressive “texterity,” sports fans flooded the interweb with updates and tweets after learning the news of Brandon Marshall’s trade to the Dolphins. Within moments, my various news streams were flooded with jeers, cheers, proclamations, and revocations. Two of my faves included, “Brandon ‘The Beast’ Marshall to the Fins!!!! Hellz yeah. Miiiiiiiiiiiiiiaaaaammmiii!!!” and “BM leaves Denver. What a sh*t.” For the most part, Miami fans appear to be out of their minds with excitement while Denver loyals are digging deep, and trying to remain hopeful about next week’s draft.
For the record, I think Brandon Marshall‘s off-field behavior is twatish at best. Between his run-ins with the law, physical therapists, and a television, he’s proven himself to be a grade-A douche. That being said, in 2009 he scored 10 TDs, caught over 100 passes, and made his second consecutive Pro-Bowl appearance. Without a doubt, when he behaves himself, Brandon Marshall is, indeed, a beast. So the question is… can Tony Sparano and the Dolphins organization (aka “The Big Tuna“) do for this power wide out what Belichick and the Patriots did for Randy Moss? If they can, then I’m predicting nothing but clear skies for the Sunshine State.
On the fantasy front, however, this trade makes for some foggy weather. Up until Week 11 of last season, Miami maintained a run first offense with Ronnie Brown as their star RB. After #23 went out with a foot injury, though, the Fins were forced to take some chances and decided to utilize their big-armed, but previously untested QB. Henne was by no means a power-house, but did throw for over 1700 yards and 7 touchdowns in the post-wildcat offense… and that was with a less than stellar receiving core. Therefore, the addition of Brandon Marshall clearly creates an uptick in Henne’s value. He’s not a starter, but he’s a good bye-week option and might become more depending on the evolution of Miami’s play calling.
So while Henne gets a boost, both Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams will probably see less action, lowering their fantasy values. Again, we don’t know what Sparano/Parcels have in store, but they clearly want to add a passing dimension and more weapons to their offensive arsenal. And who can blame them? Acquiring Marshall gives the team more options and helps to extend the shelf-life of their running backs. There’s no need to wear down the tread on those tires and put either player at risk of further injury if they can actually pass the ball with good results.
And what about Brandon Marshall? Does a move from the Broncos to the Dolphins increase or decrease his fantasy value? Well, he goes from being perhaps the sole offensive weapon in Denver to a solid option in Miami. I think Henne has more upside than Orton, but I also think he’ll have fewer opportunities in such a run heavy offense. Then again, the 26 year old WR was out of the game and suspended so often in Denver that we might not know what he’s capable of achieving… especially on a team that manages to rehab more than just his sore hip.
What we do know is that, like it or not, Brandon Marshall is a top ten fantasy receiver. As the months unfold and the ease of his transition as well as Sparano’s vision for the team becomes more clear, we’ll have a better idea of where exactly in the top ten he belongs. Right now, I have him ranked at No. 7, but that could definitely change by August.
All of this is to say that the biggest winners in this trade are the Fins Fans. And to fantasy owners – with the exception of Henne, everyone else’s value is either going to drop or stay the same. Oh, and for the two of you asking about Ted Ginn Jr. Yeah, he’s absolutely getting traded. I don’t think I need to explain why. Also, you’re a moron if you drafted him the first place. Shine on.