Fantasy football owners everywhere are mouth agape upon hearing the news that Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck intends to retire from the NFL at 29 years old.
Roster him in all leagues until the dust has settled. He’s still worth stashing in dynasty leagues, because it isn’t out of the question that he returns after a year off.
The new starting quarterback will be Jacoby Brissett, and he has shown enough to warrant a fantasy roster spot in all formats. Depending on your league size and backup quarterback situation, Luck could be dropped for Brissett. The Colts have a much strong offensive line than the last time the former New England Patriot was the starter in Indy.
The biggest concern now is how much Luck’s impending retirement devalues wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, running back Marlon Mack and tight end Eric Ebron in fantasy football.
Hilton may not drop off as much as some would think. He still has his wheels and elusiveness. Brissett has a strong arm, and if there is any receiver he will rely on, one has to believe it will be Hilton. Hilton goes from a borderline WR1 to a lower No. 2. He remains a weekly starter, regardless of the matchup.
Look for a healthy dosage of Mack to help keep defenses honest, yet there’s also a major question about how many touches he can handle without breaking down. Mack’s value falls from a sly RB2 in Round 3 or 4 to a risky flex play and may fall a few rounds in drafts. He could offer No. 2 value in deeper setups or if Brissett takes his own game to a new level.
Look for an uptick in action for running back Nyheim Hines to help keep Mack alive and well. The second-year back has value only in PPR leagues, though, and remains little more than an option during bye weeks.
Ebron’s regression could be catastrophic. His entire value centered around his ability to find the end zone, an attribute that now has to be seriously in jeopardy. He is basically a matchup play at this point. There already were enough question marks around him when we thought Luck would play.
Lesser fantasy considerations, such as Parris Campbell (hamstring injury aside) and Devin Funchess, can be removed from conventional draft boards. The latter has a hint of worth in deep leagues.