A couple of weeks ago, we discussed three players that underperformed in 2022 that have strong rest-of-career outlooks (Diontae Johnson, Mike Gesicki, and Jakobi Meyers). In this article, we’ll do the opposite: take three aging veterans that appear to be on the decline.
Lots of players are declining at any point in time, but there are three in particular that stick out when looking at the market’s expectations. You’ll want to Go Short on these guys now before their stocks tumble even further in 2023.
Going Short on these guys means you’re expecting their stock price to decrease. That’s exactly what I’ll be doing, and that’s exactly what I’ll be recommending you do as well. After reading the article, let me know if you agree. You can hit me up anytime on Twitter @AdamKoffler to talk about it.
And as always, don’t forget to use those Multipliers to supercharge your bets in order to potentially increase your earnings. Let’s go!
For starters, Smith-Schuster’s share price is inflated from the recent Super Bowl win where he banked a whopping $0.47. Without the Super Bowl win, he’d have banked just over $0.09 with his seven catches for 53 yards. Instead of banking $1.99, he’d have banked just $1.61 during the 2022 season ($0.09 per game). In his two fully healthy seasons in Pittsburgh (2018 and 2020), Smith-Schuster banked $2.32 ($0.15 per game) and $1.71 ($0.10 per game).
Now let’s look at some of the metrics. One might have thought Patrick Mahomes would take Smith-Schuster’s career to new heights. However, that wasn’t really the case as JuJu earned the lowest target share of his career (17.4%) since his rookie season. His 15.4% red zone target share was a career-low too.
Additionally, per PlayerProfiler, his route participation dipped from 95.9% in 2020 to just 76.3% in 2022 while his snap share was also the lowest of his career at just 70.2%. Thankfully for, his catchable target rate was a career-high 91.1% due to Mahomes throwing him the football. If not for his quarterback, Smith-Schuster might have been looking at a very mediocre season in Kansas City.
And now he’s a free agent, so there’s a chance he’s not back with the Chiefs in 2023. If not, it’s possible we see even more of a decline from the 7th-year wideout. Currently, the Mojo market expects him to earn another $6.98 before he retires. That’s a higher Future Value than target Diontae Johnson, Chris Godwin, Stefon Diggs, and Davante Adams.
The time to Go Short on JuJu’s is now, right after his stock price has been pumped up by a Super Bowl victory.
Mixon has earned $12.58 of Mojo Value so far in his career. That includes $5.60 in the last two seasons. He played in 17 games this season (including the playoffs) and only banked more than $0.15 in six of them (35.3%). His Week 9 performance against the Carolina Panthers in which he rushed for 153 yards and four touchdowns netted him $0.46. That was the most Mojo Value any RB earned in a single game all season and accounted for 3.7% of his entire career earnings!
The market expects Mixon to earn another $4.38 before retirement. If you took his outlier Week 9 performance in 2022 and made it his average per-game earnings across the other 16 games, he’d have earned $0.11 that week. Then, his per-game average would have been just over $0.12. With a Future Value of $4.38, the market expects Mixon to play roughly another 36 games at his 2022 production.
But Mixon is heading into his age 27-season in 2023 and he’s already showing signs of decline. Per PlayerProfiler, Mixon regressed sharply in all of the following efficiency metrics:
He’s going to need to rely on high touchdown rates and lots of targets moving forward if he’s going to reach his market expectations. In fact, Mixon has a higher Future Value than guys like Aaron Jones ($3.78), Derrick Henry ($4.11), Dalvin Cook ($3.49), and everyone’s favorite rookie Isiah Pacheco ($4.25). I believe all of those running backs have a better future outlook than Mixon as it stands today.
Williams had by far the best year of his career in 2021, racking up 1,146 yards and nine touchdowns on 129 targets. It was also only one of two seasons (out of six) that he’s played at least 16 games. The other four seasons, including this past season, he’s missed multiple games. And even when he plays, he’s not guaranteed to finish the game in large part due to his play style. In 2022, he played fewer than 65% of the snaps in three games (23%). That also happened twice in 2020, when he had to leave early or was limited due to injury.
After banking $2.02 in 2021, Williams accumulated just $1.41 in 2022. His per-game earnings also dropped from $0.13 to $0.11. Another thing that dropped was his target share (18.2%) and target rate (20.9%). Per PlayerProfiler, his expected fantasy points dropped from 14.9 in 2021, to just 11.7 in 2022. Not great!
Currently, Williams has a Future Value similar to Stefon Diggs. Diggs is only a year older than Williams and just came off a season in which he earned the second-highest target share of his career (28.4%).
With a Future Value of $5.53, the market expects Williams to play approximately another 50 games (over three seasons) at his 2022 production. I’m just not sure he’s capable of sustaining that level of production as he approaches 30 years old given his style of play.