Trading is the quickest way to take your team from sitting on the bubble of a playoff berth to a championship contender, or vice-versa if you make the wrong deal, which is why it is so important to make sure you are targeting (and selling) the right players at the right time.
And yes - every player has a price. It doesn't matter whether they are the best player in fantasy football or a dwindling kicker - every player has a price that they should be traded away for or should have something given up to get. If you don't know what the value of your players is, head over to our Trade Charts!
For people in leagues that are more active in trading, this is for you - these are our top 5 trade targets based on the "buy-low, sell-high" approach with players highlighted likely to see an increase in value in the near future due to easy matchups, surrounding injuries, improving/changing scenarios, etc:
1. Jordan Addison - WR, Baltimore Ravens
Everything is aligning for Jordan Addison's prospects over the next several weeks between increased utilization as of late (excluding a 1-target, 0-catch game in Minnesota's offensive meltdown against Carolina in Week 4) and the injury to Justin Jefferson, which is anticipated to keep the star WR sidelined for at least the next 4 weeks (as he is on I.R.) and possibly longer.
Addison saw the most utilization of his rookie season in Week 5, drawing 9 targets for 6 catches, 64 yards, and a TD on a 75% target share, a season-best 18.4-point performance. That now makes 3 TDs through his first 5 games and a favorable stretch upcoming without Justin Jefferson in the lineup.
He's a WR I'm looking to acquire, not just for the short-term value in Jefferson's absence but also for the long-term upside as he would have become naturally more involved as the season progressed. I'm anticipating him as a WR2 option by season's end.
2. Lamar Jackson - QB, Baltimore Ravens
Lamar Jackson has historically struggled against Pittsburgh, averaging just 13.46 PPG against the Steelers compared to 21.98 PPG against all other opponents throughout his career, and that trend continued in Week 5 with a mere 0-TD, 9.9-point performance from the Ravens' QB.
Prior to that, he had raddled off three straight games of 22+ points where he totaled 807 yards, 8 TDs, and 0 INTs. Outside the poor performance against the Steelers and a lackluster season opener against a stingy Texans defense, Lamar appears to be suited perfectly for the new Todd Monken scheme.
I'm looking to capitalize on a down week that may limit his trade price thanks to a poor matchup (for him personally) and SEVERAL (which may be understating it) drops that kept Jackson from an additional 10-15 points (at a minimum).
3. James Cook - RB, Buffalo Bills
Week 5 was a rough outing for the Bills offensively and James Cook's performance aligned with that.
Cook had his first single-digit (and by far his worst) performance of the season last week against Jacksonville, taking 5 carries for -4 yards (yes you read that correctly) and bringing in 3 of 4 targets for 25 yards via the air (5.1 points). It was a rough day for the entire Bills' rushing attack, totaling just 29 rushing yards as a team with Josh Allen as the leading rusher at just 14 yards.
Playing from behind nearly the entire game, Cook didn't get a traditional workload, seeing just 8 total touches, which was 5 fewer than his next-smallest workload (and was fewer than any workload he had seen only in the running game). It was an abnormal game script for the Bills, as simple as that.
The good news is you can likely get him for pennies on the dollar after a down performance in Week 5. He's a solid RB2 option that looks as safe as an option as you can find, seeing as he is workload-dependent (as opposed to TD-dependent) and still dominates the Bills' backfield in terms of work (both in the rushing and receiving games). Now's the time to get him ahead of a very favorable stretch of games that rank as the 2nd-easiest SOS over the next 4 for RBs.
4. Brandon Aiyuk - WR, San Francisco 49ers
You just saw Aiyuk's floor - 9.8 points. That came with a poor game script, limited capitalization on his targets, no redzone involvement, and a 40-yarder that was called back due to a holding penalty.
Aiyuk continues to prove that he is one of the safest (and most consistent) fantasy WRs, even despite being within an offense that has so many other weapons commanding touches (McCaffrey, Samuel, Kittle).
He hasn't found the endzone since Week 1 (which will likely change soon) and is likely to be acquired at a discount after an only 'modest' Week 5 performance. With an upcoming schedule that will likely see fewer blowouts in favor of San Francisco (and coincidingly a better pass-friendly game script), I am all-in on looking to acquire Aiyuk as my WR2 this week. That's not even taking into account San Francisco's amazing schedule for fantasy at the WR position (4th-best remaining SOS, 2nd-best SOS over next 4).
5. Anthony Richardson - QB, Indianapolis Colts
Let me preface this by saying this is ONLY an option for those sitting comfortably at 4+ wins (or those sitting atop their league in points with 3+ wins).
Richardson is set to miss around "a month or more", per Ian Rappoport with an AC Joint sprain to his throwing shoulder. That means you're not trading for Richardson as your QB1 at the moment unless you want to play the gambling game with a streamer over the next several weeks. I see Richardson as a potential steal if you can acquire him for QB2 value with the intent of only using him for late-season and playoff starts.
We've seen what Richardson can do when on the field (20.9 points in Week 1, 17.7 points in 1 quarter of Week 2, 29.6 points in Week 4). With that level of production, a favorable playoff schedule, and a very affordable trade price, Richardson is a high-priority target of mine in leagues that I have some flexibility (record-wise).