2021 Dynasty Football Profile: Trey Sermon

by Hunter Bolding
2021 Dynasty Football Profile: Trey Sermon

Last time we talked about the savior of every fantasy team he's on, Cooper Kupp. This time, in another 2021 Dynasty Football Profile, we're talking about a relative disappointment, Trey Sermon.

Those who drafted Trey Sermon in their rookie dynasty drafts this year have to be disappointed. The running back out of the University of Oklahoma/Ohio State was selected with a third-round pick by the San Francisco 49ers in the 2021 NFL Draft. Prospective dynasty owners were salivating at the thought of taking the lead back in a Kyle Shanahan-led offense, that is until we actually got to the season.

Trey Sermon has been anything but a success in his first year in the NFL. It sure seems like this 2021 season is lost forever for him. But as fantasy football players, we all know that things can change on a dime. Elijah Mitchell's dynasty value jumped up earlier in the season. Why can't Trey Sermon's value rise as well?

That lead back in any Kyle Shanahan offense is valuable. Just ask Steve Slaton, Devonta Freeman, Ryan Torain, Roy Helu, Alfred Morris, and more players who've been with and without Shanahan in their careers. Turns out that the dude knows how to run an offense with a feature back. If you took Sermon with a late first/early second-round pick, that seems like a waste at this point. But don't fret, because, like all those other backs listed above, they had to go through some growing pains.

Trey Sermon might be down, but he's definitely not out for dynasty players. Let's dive in.

2021 Dynasty Football Profile: Trey Sermon

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Trey Sermon Could Still Easily Be The RB1 In San Francisco, This Year, Or Next

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Just because there are stories out there of backs like Chris Carson or others who outperform their draft stock and become stars in the league, doesn't mean that Trey Sermon is cooked. Elijah Mitchell has outplayed him this year. There's something wrong in San Francisco, and it might be just that Trey Sermon wasn't as ready for the pro game as Mitchell. Remember, there are more things to real-life football than just rushing yards and touchdowns. Mitchell came out of the gates on fire, got hurt, and then came back on fire. That third-round pick that the 49ers used on Sermon is still valuable. The team traded up to grab Sermon, could it be that he's just meant to be paired with Trey Lance?

Who knows, but it's no coincidence that one of Sermon's best games came with Trey Lance under center for a majority of the game. That line of 19 rushes for 89 yards looks pretty similar to what Mitchell is doing now. Looking back at Sermon's college stats, they're not Jonathan Taylor-like numbers, but they paint a picture of a "lightning" back in a two-back system. On limited touches in college, he averaged 6.5 yards per carry and scored 26 total rushing touchdowns.

On extremely limited snaps this year, that YPC has gone down to a respectable 4.4, and he's looked decent as a starter. In the preseason, Sermon's stock only rose, and then it exploded after Raheem Mostert's injury. Then Sermon hurt his shoulder and everything flipped toward Mitchell.

The Opposite Side Of Mitchell In Dynasty

There's another side to this argument that Sermon is cooked in San Francisco before it even started. The hit rate for third-round running backs in the NFL isn't very high. You either want those first/second round talents or ones later in the draft. Mitchell was a 6th-round pick and he looks far better than Sermon has so far. Who's to say that Mitchell doesn't just ride with this job until the wheels fall off? Well, the history of Kyle Shanahan and the injury luck with the 49ers disagree. Besides this year, the 49ers have been content to rotate their backs in and out: one series Jeff Wilson Jr. gets the run, then the next is Raheem Mostert, and then the next is Jamycal Hasty, and so on.

Sermon might just need a "red-shirt" season in the NFL and then he comes back to take the job next year or later in the season. The 49ers are four games back in the division but could make a play for a wild card slot because of the new rules in the NFL with seven teams making the playoffs. One injury and we're back in a place where the 49ers need Sermon to step up. His value is assuredly at its lowest in dynasty formats. In season-long, Sermon is on the waiver wire and should stay there until something changes with this 49ers team.

What Will It Take To Get Sermon In Dynasty?

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Trey Sermon is looking like he'll be on a lot of "Post-Hype Sleeper" lists next year. Raheem Mostert, Jeff Wilson Jr., and Jamychal Hasty are all free agents after the 2021 season. That's a lot of the people in Sermon's way that are out of the picture. Just because they're basically using one-back right now, doesn't mean that the 49ers go back to rotating guys in. Having both Mitchell and Sermon running well is good for the team. It might not be the same as fantasy players getting all the work from one guy, but if they're both efficient, there's no reason that both guys can't be successful.

That being said, the Sermon owner in your dynasty league is either frustrated with Sermon or is just going to hold onto him because his value has never been lower. Shipping a third or fourth-round pick would likely get Sermon at this point. Think of it like this, with that pick you're likely taking a backup to a solid back. Sermon has shown that he can run well in the NFL. He's only getting better, and if he doesn't pan out, he's still worth as much as the backup running back you'd be taking. There's major value to this San Francisco rushing attack, especially after Trey Lance takes over for Jimmy Garoppolo.


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