Fantasy Implications of Moss, Lynch trades

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Unlike major league baseball, trading in the NFL and particularly at the trade deadline, is usually a rarity. And trading superstars comes about as often as an honest politician or Haley's comet.

So the two trades that have taken place in the last 24 hours are quite unusual and will require evaluation from the fantasy owner's perspective.

We will begin with reports that Randy Moss has been traded from the New England Patriots back to the team that originally drafted him in 1998, the Minnesota Vikings, for a third-round pick.

Moss is the weapon that the Vikings' offense needed to replace the injured Sidney Rice. Rice, apparently wasn't progressing as quickly as the team had hoped as indicated by a Monday report that Rice was "still on crutches."

Moss, who will be playing for a new contract, should become the guy everyone expected when they selected him at the end of the first round (RapidDraft ADP 9.22) on Draft Day. He certainly hadn't been that guy in the Patriots first four games, totaling just nine receptions for 139 yards and three touchdowns. If you need a wide receiver, perhaps you can acquire him from his current owner, who may be frustrated by his lack of early production.

For those who took a "flier" on Rice, hoping that he would be back by Week 8 and ready to shine like he did in 2009, that strategy is dead. Even when he returns, he'll have to split targets with Moss, Percy Harvin, Bernard Berrian and Visanthe Shiancoe.

Berrian's value, such as it is after catching just five balls for 38 yards in the first three contests, will also take a hit as Moss should replace him in the starting lineup.

Meanwhile, Shiancoe will now have to share some of his red zone targets with Moss, which will not please his fantasy owners.

Harvin's numbers will likely take the least drop of all the current Vikings receivers.

Quarterback Brett Favre (84-percent owned), who had seen his production drop from last year's great season, should become a much better play, although not this Monday night against the tough New York Jets defense.

The other significant fantasy trade this week was Buffalo sending running back Marshawn Lynch to the Seattle Seahawks for a fourth-round pick in the 2011 draft and a conditional pick in 2012.

Justin Forsett was just settling into the role of primary ball carrier after beating back the competition (Leon Washington, Julius Jones). Forsett had seen 20-plus touches in the last two games (128 rushing yards, 41 receiving yards). It's obvious that the team wasn't impressed enough with Forsett's work against San Diego and St. Louis, and barring an injury to Lynch, Forsett won't see that kind of workload again this season.

"We're bringing him in to play a bunch," head coach Pete Carroll said in a press conference.

With the release of Jones to make room for Lynch, it appears that Lynch will get the majority of the work, Forsett will get the leftovers and Washington will become just a return man.

Lynch is owned in just 39-percent of all leagues and is worthy of a waiver claim. Barring injury, Forsett has little to no fantasy value.

Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.

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