#3InOut – Week 4 Edition

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3 IN

+ CLE WRs Rashard Higgins/Antonio Callaway
Now I won’t normally be naming 2 players from the same team, (and assuming never, ever again from the Browns), but what Baker Mayfield showed us last week fired me up enough to try something crazy. Not only is Mayfield a better option to open things up here for Browns WR’s, being thrust into a situation like that and equipped with an opportunity like he had, it makes it all the more impressive and comforts me to the point I think getting EITHER ONE of these guys is a good idea. They’ve shown the ability to stretch the field and make the catches (when the throw is on target), and being as Cleveland has a semblance of a running game with Carlos Hyde, this offense has a chance to move now that they’ve got the ‘L’ monkey off their back. If anything, I might even say I’m excited to watch the Browns now.

+ ARI WR Christian Kirk
Coming off a pre-season in which he showed the coaching staff what he was capable of, (8 catches, 59 yards, 1 TD), the speedy slot receiver has since fallen victim to Sam Bradford’s inability to throw a football. Part of the hesitance around picking Kirk up earlier was the question on his usage, as Larry Fitz usually occupies the slot. It now appears it’s solely the QB situation, and now that Josh Rosen has been named the starter, it’s safe to roster up Christian Kirk. I’m not promising booming results right away, but it won’t take long.

+ CIN WR Tyler Boyd
In the ADD I feel may get the most push-back I say – YES to Tyler Boyd. The entire fantasy world remained unconvinced after his Week 2 performance of 6 rec on 9 targets for 91 yards & 1 TD, but he came back and surprised absolutely everyone with 6 rec on 7 for 132 yards and another TD. As receivers generally go hand in hand with their QB’s performance, it’s important to note that Dalton did throw 4 INT’s Week 3, but he still went for 352 & 2 TD’s. Dalton looks like he’s taken a step forward this season. Another thing to watch out for that could help increase Boyd’s target share is if AJ Green were to miss any time with the injury he left the last game with. Either way – he’s a pickup this week and available in 83% of Yahoo leagues.

3OUT

Every 49er.
The arrival of Marquise Goodwin on the Week 3 scene (3 rec, 30 yards, TD), is not tantalizing enough to overcome the loss of Jimmy G, it’s as simple as that. The only offensive players worth rostering at this point are RB Matt Breida and maybe even TE George Kittle. C.J. Beathard under center is not ideal to replace Jimmy in a generally underwhelming offence. Just stay away from them, and if you can find someone who doesn’t read our stuff, (good luck), try and sell high-ish on Goodwin.

NYJ WR Robby Anderson
3rd time unlucky for Anderson. A guy who last year flashed pretty consistent brilliance, (with Fitzpatrick coincidentally), has come smashing back to earth with only 6 catches in the first 3 weeks, putting up 90 yards and a TD. The one TD looks okay, but knowing it came on his only catch of Week 1, its put into perspective. Anderson may be worth keeping an eye on as Darnold gets more comfortable throwing to someone outside of Enunwa, but right now there’s just too many better options available.

SEA RB Rashaad Penny
Well, I hate to say I told you so, but the Chris Carson show has officially begun in Seattle. With a paltry 43 yards on 20 attempts, it’s safe to say Penny hasn’t had the start he wanted. While it may not be a real reflection on his abilities personally, the inability to overcome Seattle’s offensive line deficiency as well as Carson has done has made expendable. Like Anderson, this situation is worth monitoring in dynasty leagues, but there are many more productive streamers available.

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WR’s – Who to Draft when everyone’s done Drafting

Top 3 WR’s Ranked #30+

With there being so few top end RB’s, finding WR’s to fill your flex spots is imperative. Luckily, there are plenty of options.
I’m not talking ‘sleepers’ here, I’m talking ‘been dead for years and you’re excavating their sarcophagus’.

Ranked 30 or above.

These picks won’t necessarily help you right away, and may be risky plays in DFS, but in dynasty leagues with salary caps, these can turn a bench spot into future dollars.

Top 5 Obvious WR’s to Target in any format:
1. Antonio Brown
2. DeAndre Hopkins
3. Odell Beckham Jr.
4. Julio Jones
5. Michael Thomas

but to the real juicy stuff…

LAR Cooper Kupp – ADP 37*
I’m not going to go very deep in the whole analytics thing, I’m a firm believer in that it doesn’t really matter in fantasy. Does the guy get points? Then it’s a good pick.
Cooper Kupp, to be frank, is going to be on fire this season. The sophomore Rams WR exploded onto the scene as a rookie and piled up 869 yards on 62 catches with 5 TD’s. He showed an ability to pop off for a long catch, and excels over the middle.
It’s not a stretch to say he hits 70+ catches, 1,000+ yards, 8 TD’s. Get him and ride off into the sunset.

Top RB’s to draft ranked 30 or above

LAC Mike Williams – ADP 46*
I know what you’re thinking. “Keenan Allen is going to eat up all the targets.” Sure, he’ll get targeted lots. But what did I just finish saying? If they score points, that’s all that matters. Williams has, by all accounts, looked incredible throughout camp. Making circus catches, high-pointing over DB’s, and showing an incredible hunger to get back into the game.
Rumour has it that with TE Hunter Henry out for the year, the Chargers are scheming a lot of things for Williams around the end-zone, and when you combine a QB like Rivers with a WR with the size and ability of Williams, you know what that usually equates to? That’s right, points. He’s not on a ton of peoples’ radar, and can be had very late, and very cheap, which will be great for next year when he really breaks out and you’ve kept him. (And hint: Keenan Allen has an opt-out of his deal after this year)

SEA Tyler Lockett – ADP 56*
This is it. This is the year for Tyler Lockett. He’s had a rough go of it so far, but this is the year. Last season he proved he could come back after a (brutal) injury to stay healthy all season, and this year looks to take the next step into real effectiveness.
Russell Wilson has lost a few weapons in Richardson, Kearse, and Jimmy Graham so there’s a few more catches to be had out there. Lockett’s maxed out at 51 catches for 664 yards with 6 TD’s in his rookie season back in 2015, but looks to pile on top of that with tons of room to run out there. While Seattle’s offensive line has improved, Wilson will still be looking to get the ball out quickly which helps the inside guys (Lockett) pile up the targets. I personally had him as a rookie and kept him, but NOW it’s time.

*based on 12-team PPR

Leave a comment and let me know who I missed, maybe we’ll get into a healthy discussion about it. Or tweet me @HollandGregJ

RB’s – Who to Draft when everyone’s done Drafting

Top 3 RB’s Ranked #30+

The consensus for the past few years has been that if you aren’t lucky enough to get a top 5 running back in your draft, you have no shot at winning. To help alleviate your issues, you need to be good at picking out talent beyond the Top 5 obvious ones.

I’m not talking ‘sleepers’ here, I’m talking ‘been dead for years and you’re excavating their sarcophagus’. Ranked 30 or above.
These picks won’t necessarily help you right away, or in DFS, but in dynasty leagues with salary caps, these can turn a bench spot into future dollars.

Top 5 RB’s to Target in any format:
1. Todd Gurley
2. David Johnson
3. Le’Veon Bell
4. Ezekiel Elliott
5. Saquon Barkley/Alvin Kamara
(I only wanted 5 here, but, Kamara’s too good).

but to the real juicy stuff…

SEA Chris Carson – ADP 37*
Carson had a great start last season, but unfortunately for him went down with a broken leg in Week 4 vs. the Colts after amassing 208 yards on 49 carries with 1TD behind Seattle’s plainly abhorrent offensive line. Seattle was one of the worst rushing teams last season, but have taken actions to improve their line this time around. In Carson’s only real feature role last year, he ran for 93 yards on 20 carries for a 4.6 avg. This guy has done nothing but impress his coaching staff and fans alike with his ability to explode off of cuts, and being one of those power backs who always seems to fall forward. He’s going to be a goal-line beast. I’m expecting 6-7 TD’s as a floor. He’s Seattle’s starter, and should be FED. You’d be able to pick him up for absolutely nothing, and it’ll be one of the smartest moves you can make.

NYJ Isaiah Crowell – ADP 35
He finally escaped the hole in Cleveland, only to land with the J-E-T-S. The obvious negative here is that they’re obviously not a powerhouse and they’re QB situation is a tad murky at the moment, BUT he’s 1st in line in the backfield. Crowell didn’t get too much praise for his efforts on a dismal team, but he did manage to put up some very respectable numbers:
206 carries, 853 yds, 2 TD’s. That’s good for 4.1 avg on only 12.9 attempts per game.
One other stat to note: He’ll be moving to a home field (MetLife Stadium) that has a turf playing surface – Crowell averages almost a YARD more per carry on turf at 4.9. (Cleveland is grass) Oh, and he can catch too.

CHI Tarik Cohen – ADP 30
I really didn’t want to do this. We all know Howard is the bell cow in Chicago, but Cohen just provides too much upside at the position to not be mentioned. Rumour has it that the coaching staff is putting Cohen in more pass-catching situations to get him in the open field more. This just means a hell of a lot of trouble for the opposition. In only his 2nd season in the league, he’s had limited opportunities to showcase his full potential, but that’s what you have to go off in these dynasty situations!
He boasts a 4.3 yards per carry average on 87 career carries, with 353 yards on an INSANE 53 catches last season.
He returns kicks, punts, and even passed for a TD last year as a rookie. He finished with 1,578 all purpose yards last year. Nuts.
The guy packs so much big play potential with plans revolving a lot around getting him the ball this year. I’d say it’s easily worth a flier as a late round pick after all those starters are gone. You could do a lot worse.

https://twitter.com/SportsQuotient/status/937398898368352258

*based off 12 team PPR

Leave a comment and let me know who I missed, maybe we’ll get into a healthy discussion about it. Or tweet me @HollandGregJ

Fantasy Football Is Back; Don’t Sleep On These Players

It’s that special time of year again. You’re getting your notifications to sign up for another year in your fantasy football league. The draft isn’t too far away and you need a quick cheat sheet to help you out. Well look no further!

Everyone knows the big name guys who will go in the first round. This is for the lesser known “value” guys you should be picking up later in your draft. Have at it!

Ronald Jones II – RB

With the departure of Doug Martin, Tampa Bay has potentially drafted his replacement in Ronald Jones II. There is a lot to like about this pick. With all the attention of the class going to Saquon Barkley, Jones could easily fly under the radar to later rounds and still put up RB1 numbers. Rookie running backs have been thriving for a while and I expect Jones to continue the trend as a start out of the gate. Add to the fact that the Bucs passing game is a bit of a mess, they should be looking to establish a strong running game.

Jack Doyle – TE

A very underrated fantasy performer over the last 2 seasons. In fact he lead the Colts in catches last season as a tight end. Now with Andrew Luck back, he will have ample opportunity to tack on a few more touchdowns to go with his high volume of catches. One thing to keep an eye on is Eric Ebron who was picked up by Indy in the off season. He may steal a few catches away from Doyle, but not enough to offset the return of Luck. Expect another top 10 season from him.

Jared Goff – QB

The Rams offense hit on all cylinders last season, and while Gurley deservingly gets a lot of the credit, don’t forget the great play from Goff. Another year experience under his belt and the best weapon he’s had in Cooks should propel him to one of the best value QBs in the league. And let’s be honest, no one wants to draft a QB early.

Chris Hogan – WR

Okay so maybe not so unknown anymore if you paid any attention to New England last year. Hogan started 2017 as the third receiver and quickly catapulted his way up the depth chart. With Cooks gone and Edelman suspended to begin the season, Hogan will get a ton of looks. He proved to be a reliable catcher last year and he has no one in his way anymore. Snag him up before someone else does.

 

Fantasy Baseball is the WORST

If naming my fantasy baseball team the Grichuk Fan Club wasn’t temping fate enough, my team has been absolutely DESTROYED by injuries which leads me to a pretty biased and personal conclusion: Fantasy Baseball is the WORST.

Having contributed cash to two fantasy pools for the privilege to play fantasy baseball for the 2018 season, I can decidedly say that THAT is the worst investment I have ever made. And this is coming from a guy with a sizeable Beanie Baby collection.

The desire to play fantasy baseball comes off of an emotionally vulnerable state that come up when the NFL season ends. The majority of us didn’t win our fantasy football leagues and thus our never ending desire to be a winner at something leads us to find people as dumb as we are to set aside 19 hours to draft a team full of players we don’t know and will likely hate in no time.

And that is issue one with Fantasy Baseball: the teams are too big and the draft sucks. 28 players on one team and 26 on the other – simply too many players. I love baseball, but more honestly I love the Toronto Blue Jays. So why am I letting Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Nick Privetta destroy my mental sanity by caring about his up and down start to the 2018 season? Or why did I spend good time searching for sleeper-break out stars that can get me some saves without sacrificing an early round pick? Because i’m a broken human being who believes I can GM a pro sports team better than someone who actually has the credentials to do that job.

What factors into this team size issue is the fact that you have to draft position players and pitchers – all positions, plus utility players (any position), then you have starters, relievers, and closers. With pitchers playing on a five day rotation you have to move players every day, and also have to build a roster of pitchers who can be applied on different days so you can maximize your stats. As I type this I am literally getting mad because I am reliving the nightmare of sitting Homer Bailey by accident when he threw a no-hitter… five years ago.

Simply put, unless you are obsessed with the sport there are just too many players to have to pick from, especially when you are forced to draft online with a bunch of tools who take the entire 2:30 minutes to pick their player who ends up usually being the next best player available.

Issue two is what I am currently struggling with: the season is too damn long. 162 games. Too many. It is just about the two month mark of the season now and I just don’t give a shit anymore about this team full of injured assholes I proudly drafted what seems like a thousand years ago.

Can this be resolved? Sure – start the fantasy baseball season on July 1st. Injuries have settled, you know what teams are contending, you can narrow rosters because entire teams will have limited to no value, and you skip three months of crappy “are the Rockies actually a good team?” baseball.

The final issue is the injuries and disabled list usage in the MLB. Everyone is injured, everyone is on the 10 day DL, or not playing and listed as day-to-day. As it sits right now I have seven players on the DL, all are really good players as well, so my two designated DL roster spots are filled and the remaining five players are just corpses sitting on my bench because I can’t drop them.

I am also a victim of late preseason injury. Yup, I drafted Motocross Madison Bumgarner. That dick though it would be a sweet idea to crash his dirt bike two weeks from the start of the MLB season, and has yet to see playing time. Cool.

Also, I drafted both Daniel Murphy and Ervin Santana who I knew would start the season on the DL. Their draft stock fell so it was good value. Two months later Santana has been shifted to the 60-Day DL, while Murphy is STILL listed on the 10-Day DL. The designation is ridiculous and I hate it. Two draft spots wasted, and I swear Murphy and Santana are actually laughing at me.

The worst part about all of this is that even if I was winning and not dropping like a stone in the standings I still don’t think I would care. I literally sit at a computer all day and I cant find the 45 seconds it would take to shift my roster around to get my starting players actually slotted in! So I am taking a stand and protesting the rest of the season by not adjusting my line up. This features on one team an empty 2B spot, and on the other a few DL players still in my starting line up – it just doesn’t matter.

What have I learned from this? Well that I am a weak person (as previously mentioned) that needs to win the admiration and respect of strangers through my prowess of being an imaginary MLB GM. The conclusion: i’ll do the same stupid thing next year.

See ya in April! …I hate myself.