20 Facts about 2020-1st Quarter

Well, 2020 has been pretty much as chaotic as we imagined it would be. But hey, we still have football at the moment. I guess that is a win itself. Regardless, here are 20 random facts for where we stand in the season. It is a small sample size, but it is where we are nonetheless. These statistics were collected from ESPN and comprised in relation to a full point PPR format.

  1. Dak Prescott is on pace for 6,760 passing yards. Peyton Manning currently holds the record for single season passing yards with 5,477. Given his yardage per game, it would have taken Manning 19-20 games to do what Dak is currently pacing to do in 16.
  2. Russell Wilson is on pace to throw 64 passing touchdowns this season. Again, Peyton Manning holds the single season passing TD record with 55 in a season.
  3. If Kyler Murray were a running back, he would currently be ranked 12th in yardage with 265 and tied for 2nd in rushing touchdowns with 4.
  4. Based on his pre-draft ADP in the 9th round, Josh Allen is DEFINITIVELY the current QB steal of the draft as his 29.8 FPPG comes in 3rd behind only Wilson’s 30.7 and Prescott’s 30.5.
  5. Joe Burrow is currently QB9 on the season. For comparison (solely from a fantasy standpoint), he is outplaying Drew Brees, Matt Ryan, and Matthew Stafford.
  6. Drafted as RB10 overall, Aaron Jones is currently RB2 behind only Alvin Kamara. Jones’s 25.9 PPG matches Christian McCaffrey’s 25 over the course of the 2 games he played in thus far.
  7. Kamara and Jones both have exactly 80 touches, but AK has 26 more fantasy points over the first quarter of the season. That projects a 104 point difference at the end of the year between him as the RB1 and Jones as the RB2.
  8. If Kamara were a receiver: he would currently be ranked 7th in targets, 4th in receptions, 13th in yardage, and tied for 3rd in receiving touchdowns.
  9. Derrick Henry has 82 carries in 4 games. Oh wait. COVID. My bad. Henry has 82 carries in 3 games! That equates to 28 carries per game, which averages out to 7 more per game than Josh Jacobs in 2nd place and 9 more per game than Joe Mixon in 3rd place.
  10. James Robinson is an undrafted rookie playing for a bottom 10 offense in terms of points per game. He is currently RB6 in fantasy production thus far.
  11. Odell Beckham, Mike Evans, Allen Robinson, Keenan Allen, and Cooper Kupp are all currently outside the top 10 in terms of fantasy production. Conversely, all of these except for Keenan Allen (ADP 12) were drafted as top 10 receivers coming into 2020.
  12. DK Metcalf, Stefon Diggs, and Amari Cooper are the only receivers averaging 100+ yards per game. Of these, only Cooper was drafted with a top 10 WR ADP-9.
  13. Wide Receiver A has 84.7 fantasy points on 39 receptions. Wide receiver B has 72.3 fantasy points on 16 receptions. WRA=DeAndre Hopkins. WRB=DK Metcalf.
  14. Brandon Aiyuk, Tee Higgins, Corey Davis, and Julio Jones have each played in 3 games this year (Higgins played in all 4 but saw no reps in week 1). Of these 4, Julio Jones is having the WORST fantasy season from a production standpoint.
  15. Davante Adams has played a total of 6 quarters of football in 2020, and he has compiled 14 catches for 192 yards and 2 touchdowns.
  16. George Kittle has played in 2 out of 4 games this year and will still enter week 5 as TE6 on the season.
  17. Travis Kelce has 297 yards over 4 weeks. Kittle has 227 yards in 2 weeks.
  18. If Darren Waller were a wide receiver, he would be 5th in targets and 4th in receptions.
  19. Mark Andrews is currently TE5. TJ Hockenson is currently TE10. COMBINED, they have as many targets as Darren Waller (40) along with 2 fewer receptions (27 to his 29).
  20. The Indianapolis Colts defense went undrafted in 76% of fantasy leagues. They are currently the highest scoring defense averaging 5 more points per week than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who are currently 2nd in total points (14.5 PPG to 9.5 PPG).

Top 10 (or 11) Wide Receivers for 2020

Hey guys! This one was hard as hell to put together. Take it all with a grain of salt. Explanations will be shorter and based solely on statistics. Teams are changing even still and wide receiver depth is astronomically high this year. Draft your running backs first and then look for pass catchers in the WR2 range for 2020. This may bite you in the ass but given COVID and the deep pool of receivers, just know it will bite me too because I’m doing it! That being said, I still think there are a few that you can reach out for with high picks for larger payouts. Nonetheless, here are my favorite 10(ish) WRs this year.

  1. Michael Thomas

This one wasn’t hard. It’s no secret that the Saints’ entire offense is run through “Can’t Guard Mike.” He laughed at the previous NFL single season catch record last year recording 149 catches for 1,725 yards and 9 touchdowns. Over 16 games, that is an average of 9.3 catches per game for 108 yards per game. That’s 20 fantasy PPR points every week BEFORE factoring in touchdowns. Still not sold? Over the last 4 years, the only season in which he didn’t record 100 catches was 2016. He missed one game and caught 92. Unguardable. Unbreakable. Unstoppable.

  1. Julio Jones

Julio is a monster, but before signing up make sure you understand what you are getting into. When he is on, he will win your week for you. You will also lose because of him. He is the highest rewarding coin toss in fantasy football today. His season numbers over 15 games played in 2019 brought his totals to 99 catches, 1,394 yards, and 6 touchdowns. For reference of inconsistency though, he had 4 games recording a stat line of 5-68 or smaller and 4 games recording a stat line of 8-128 or higher. His 6 touchdowns seem like a longshot to sink to again given his career long slump of 9 games last year. I like him for 8 or 10 this season.

  1. DeAndre Hopkins

First off, I understand the skepticism. New team. New coach. New QB. However, I put D-Hop’s talent level in very close symmetry with Mike Thomas. I also love the fit with his new team and coaching staff. Kyler Murray has the same Deshaun Watson effect when he runs out of the pocket and I think D-Hop will be running the exact same routes he ran in Houston. The kicker to me is that he will actually have help from Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald to take some pressure off of him. He can still make the impossible catches he always had to make as a Texan but now won’t have to as often. I think this means his catch total probably takes a dip but his yardage and TD count both rise.

  1. Tyreek Hill

If he had played the entirety of all 16 games last season, Hill would have been on pace for 1,350 yards and 12 scores. His injury was bad for a receiver dependent on speed, but it was the first time in his career he had to miss more than one game in a season. That doesn’t scare me going into next year. He is Pat Mahomes’ go-to guy and he is the fastest man in the NFL. The Chiefs score 50 every week, guys. Hill is good. Moving on.

  1. Chris Godwin or Mike Evans?

I couldn’t give up 2 spots on a top ten list for receivers on the same team, but I fully believe one of these 2 finishes here by the end of the year. I just don’t know which one. Godwin finished 200 yards and a touchdown ahead of Evans last year, but my gut is honestly still telling me Mike Evans is the one I want. Think about the bromance between Tom Brady and Julian Edelman over the last decade. Now make Julian Edelman 7 inches taller with NBA arm span. Now make Julian Edelman a red-zone machine. With 4500-4700 passing yards on the table for this season, I think they both finish with over 1,000 but Evans is more productive in the red zone.

  1. DaVante Adams

Adams looked absolutely vanilla last year because he was just filling a hole in a bruised up offense. His talent has gone nowhere from 2018 though. The Packers just looked gross for much of last season. He also dealt with stacked injuries on top of Aaron Rodgers slumping it out. Regardless, he still posted 1,000 yards in 12 games and came in clutch to win 3 at the last minute last year. If the offense rolls, he will be a steal even in the second round. If they don’t improve, he will still be a serviceable WR2 with WR1 upside. Either way, he is getting targets and that lands him on my PPR list.

  1. Allen Robinson

Number 7? Are you shitting me? I shit you not friends. I hear you, though. The Bears suck. Mitch Trubisky sucks. Nick Foles may or may not be better. Still though, playing through the suck fest he played through last year finished him at statistical receiver number 5 last season. He had 98 catches for 1,150 yards. He was only targeted less than Mike Thomas and Julio Jones in the most pass heavy season the NFL has ever seen. He is good guys, and sneaky good. Like mock drafted in the 4th round good. 100 catches for 1,100 in the 4th round is a league winner. If Nick Foles starts all year, he is a top 4 receiver on the season. You heard it here first.

  1. Odell Beckham

Even factoring in his 4 game injury season three years ago, 2019 was Odell Beckham’s worst statistically averaged season in the NFL. It still wasn’t terrible. His touchdown regression hurt, sure. But he still had over 1,000 yards. He was not right in his head. The Browns were overhyped and poorly coached. Baker was playing through the hype and underperforming as well. 2020 brings in a new front office and a new coach in Kevin Stefanski. Stefanski called plays for the Vikings last year and made Kirk Cousins look like he was worth his contract. I think now that the hype is down and things are actually molding together for them, we may actually get the Browns in 2020 we thought we would get in 2019. If that’s true, Beckham is still a beast and I hope he gets right again. His talent should be on par with Mike, Julio, and DeAndre if his head is right.

  1. Kenny Golladay

Based on some other opinions I received before compiling this list, I had to talk myself out of bumping Kenny Golladay up to number 4 or 5. He only caught 65 passes last year, but he still posted 1,200 yards and 11 touchdowns (the most by any NFL receiver last season). Matt Stafford only played in 8 games last season. Averaging KG’s numbers from the first 8 games with Stafford as a projection over the last 8 had he played would have pushed him to 1,550 yards and 14 scores. This would have put him 5 touchdowns over the second highest WR in 2019 and left his yardage second only to Mike Thomas in his record-breaking season. The Lions always play from behind. Stafford always throws the ball well. Golladay can catch it, especially in the endzone. Seems simple to me.

  1. Amari Cooper

Two years ago, I was the guy making fun of Amari Cooper and his bust career with the Raiders. I was way wrong, guys. Cooper is still a stud. Kellen Moore figured out a way to remind us of that last year in what he contributed to the Cowboys passing attack. The most run heavy team in the NFL transformed Dak Prescott into a 5,000 yard QB in 2019, and Amari Cooper was the main beneficiary here. He wound up with a 79-1,189-8 stat line, but extended his deep ball average by a full 2 yards per catch from 2018. This may not seem like much, but it is the statistical equivalence of 200 yards on the same number of catches. That is insanity; and with the addition of CeeDee Lamb, I only look for it to continue this year.

So that is my top 10 WRs for this year. It could have gone very differently, though. Remember the depth at the position when you draft. For one last reference: including the 11 I have already talked about, 2019 gave us a total of 25 wide receivers that had at least 60 catches and 1,000 yards. 25. In a 10 man league, that’s a full round of WR1’s, a full round of WR2’s, and half a round of WR3’s. I am not saying they mean nothing, but outside of maybe 6 of them RB’s just hold more value during an unsure illness slated season.

Catch you all next week for the Tight End list. Peace.

Top 10 Running Backs of 2020

Well it’s almost that time again guys. Will we have football this year? Who the hell knows? I am going to live in denial of the strong possibility that we won’t because I just refuse to accept that it might not happen. I need it. You need it. America needs it. As a country, we can always fight about a pandemic being real or fake. We can always fight about racial injustice. We can always fight about whether that bitch Carole Baskin killed her husband or not. But one thing we can always agree on is that there is no mini vacation like cancelling your plans every Sunday to sit on your couch, drink a six pack of craft beer (because we aren’t Coors peasants), and cheer on our fantasy teams for the sake of degrading our fellow a-hole friends on how we are better than them- because fantasy football applies to every day life right?! Nonetheless, here is to hoping and here is a list of my top 10 RBs for 2020.

  1. Christian McCaffrey

I could write an entire article about this kid alone, but instead of throwing out dominant statistic after dominant statistic, I will shorten to one number: 850.7. That is how many PPR fantasy points C-Mac has over the last two seasons. For reference, the next 3 highest over that span are Zeke with 640.9, Saquon with 629.9, and Alvin Kamara with 602.7. Yes, C-Mac has 210 more fantasy points than the next man up over the last 2 years. That is a bonus 105 per season if you have the chance to draft him. Will he be facing regression? Probably, but who cares. The Panthers additions of Teddy Bridgewater and Joe Brady will calculate some bait usage to start with but an equal heavy workload as the season rolls on. In short, Bridgewater loves protecting the football in the short field and Brady loves getting his RBs open with green in front of them (see Clyde Edwards-Elhaire, LSU, 2019). I don’t understand how you still couldn’t be convinced; but if you have the #1 pick and don’t use it on McCaffrey, then you are an idiot and deserve to lose. Also, go seppuku yourself.

  1. Saquon Barkley

The next few could very well be interchangeable, but I am going to give the number 2 slot to Saquon based on the fact that 2019 kept him in a box. He exploded as a rookie with 2000 total yards and 15 touchdowns. He definitely regressed last year but a lot of things came into play. He battled an ankle injury from which he only actually missed 3 games but didn’t really look like himself for over half of the season. The offense was also in transition from finally moving on from Eli to Daniel Jones who needed time to acclimate. The edge I am giving him is that the Giants seemed to pull it together for the last few weeks and his legs finally looked fresh. He boomed for 550 yards and 5 touchdowns over the last 3 weeks of the season. Plus, adding Jason Garrett as a play caller means that if his ankle holds up, he will only be seeing more touches.

  1. Ezekiel Elliot

Dak Prescott is a franchise quarterback with a good brain and a better arm. Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and CeeDee Lamb will make up the best trips and bunches sets in the NFL. Zeke is a monster to begin with. The O-line isn’t what it was 3 years ago but it’s still top 8. Kellen Moore is a mastermind in moving the football down the field. Collectively, this means that this team is going to put up numbers and Zeke is going to be at the front of that charge. Since entering the league 4 years ago, he has only had 1 season with less than 1,750 total yards. The year was 2017; he only played in 10 games and still topped 1,200. He is coming off of a 14 touchdown season. Lastly, with Garrett out of the way, Moore will have an even bigger opportunity to run up the score against shite defenses like Washington and the NY Giants.

  1. Alvin Kamara

Aside from Christian McCaffrey, Alvin Kamara is arguably THE most versatile running back in the NFL. He is one of the only RBs in the league whose value as a pass catcher rivals his cut speed and downhill ability when healthy. His 2019 season speaks otherwise as it mirrored Saquon with a lingering injury that he played through for the most part but was definitely slowed down by. Just to reference 2018 at full speed, AK-41 eclipsed 1,600 total yards with 18 touchdowns on 275 collective touches. In short, his playmaking ability sold offensive guru Sean Payton on the idea of shipping then-franchise RB Mark Ingram out of town to promote Kamara to a 3 down role. While last season’s numbers might slide him down to 7th or 8th overall, I believe it just means that someone with a late pick can even manage a steal in the 1st round of the draft.

  1. Derrick Henry

Part of me feels like I slighted King Henry by making him number 5. Let me be clear about something, though. If I didn’t rank players in reference to PPR stats, Henry would abso-freaking-lutely be my number 1 pick overall. He is a 240 pound wrecking ball and a nightmare for even defensive ends to bring down 1-on-1. I can honestly say that in my time I can’t remember many players that share his combination of raw running power and open field speed: young Adrian Peterson and LaDainian Tomlinson are about it. He is not about finesse, screen passes, or swing passes (which is why he dropped to number 5 on my PPR list). He takes the ball from behind a show-your-hand blocking formation, runs through the middle, makes the first guy miss, then steam rolls the next 2. In short, 1,540 yards on the ground alone last season and 16 rushing touchdowns.

  1. Dalvin Cook

Assuming he plays, Cook has a RB dream empire built around him this season. He is in line to repeat a 300 touch season as the only offensive shift will be replacing some of the short yardage work Cousins found in Stefon Diggs with some field extension in rookie Justin Jefferson (Geaux Tigers!) If anything, this spreads the box out some and actually puts him in a position to catch the ball in open field more often. He is lightning fast with Kamara level cut-speed. My only opposition is his knack for injuries but I am fully confident taking him late in the first round as long as he is coupled with his backup Alexander Mattison late in the draft.

You will want to argue with me from here on out but these are just my opinions/predictions. Do not hate me for them!

  1. Josh Jacobs

I was the first person to laugh whole-heartedly at the Raiders for giving Jon Gruden $100 million a few years ago. To be clear, I don’t see them heading to a super bowl this year, but he has made some moves to turn the program around long term. The best of which, in my opinion, was drafting Josh Jacobs. As a rookie, Jacobs wasn’t even utilized the way he should have been. In 13 games, Jacobs racked up 1,150 yards on the ground and another 166 in the air last year. His touchdown count was only 7; but as I said, he wasn’t utilized to all his strengths. I am fully confident that will change this year. Gruden has stated that he was trying to protect him as a rookie to help him mentally adapt to the environment and the wacky playbook. I think he will catch plenty more passes this season as he looked natural doing it when given the few chances he received in 2019.

  1. Austin Ekeler

I know. I know. Ekeler is small and the Chargers are trash. So what? That doesn’t negatively affect fantasy value. In comparisons of run style, size, and pass catching ability, Ekeler is the closest thing to Christian McCaffrey you can get if you don’t get to pick first. Even against his “starter” Melvin Gordon over the last 3 seasons, Ekeler has looked faster and averaged more yards per carry and yards per catch. Now he has the backfield all to himself. Furthermore, his QB option will be a toss-up between Tyrod Taylor (the safest QB in NFL history in terms of waiting for a play to never develop and dumping off to his outlet) and Oregon rookie Justin Herbert (key word- Oregon) who spent his entire college career looking for quick looks over slants and halfback swings. Yeah. Give me all of that.

  1. Joe Mixon

At face value, this looks like a dart throw. I honestly believe that it isn’t, though. In 2019, Mixon had the most disappointing first half of the season for highly valued RBs in quite some time. He then turned around and marched out 817 rushing yards over the last 8 games. The Bengals were a disaster to begin with and I think it messed with his head. Bringing in Joe Burrow (Geaux Tigers!) will obviously help point them in the right direction. Assuming AJ Green is healthy and Tyler Boyd can revert back to a WR2 to pick up downfield 1-on-1s, this offense could quietly be a factor for fantasy value. Even given the slim chance to bounce back, I have enough faith in Joe Mixon’s talent to put him in my top 10 working with the pieces he will be working with this season.

  1. Clyde Edwards-Helaire (Geaux Tigers!)

When the Chiefs rolled around to their 1st pick in last year’s draft, Andy Reid actually called Pat Mahomes and let him choose between the top 3 backs on the board. Supposedly, Mahomes made absolutely no hesitation in proclaiming jubilantly, “Get me Clyde!” If you watched a single LSU game last year, you understand why. CEH is an absolute freak in every aspect of what you want in a rounded out RB. Last year during LSU’s historic run, he amassed 1,850 total yards with 18 touchdowns. Now he plays for Andy Reid’s Chiefs. Jamaal Charles, Spencer Ware, Charcandrick West, Damien Williams, Kareem Hunt- These are 5 RBs that have played for the Chiefs over the last 6 years that have had multiple 30 point fantasy games. I know for a fact CEH will be better than 4 of them, but I honestly believe he has the potential to surpass what we know about Jamaal Charles even. Also, did I mention it’s the Chiefs? Yeah, they score like 100 points every week.

Right or wrong, there you have it guys. I really missed doing this so I will probably be back soon with some Wide Receiver stuff. Thanks for reading.

Stranger Fantasy Football Things

So we are approaching the midway point of the season, and what a strange season it has been thus far. I would like to say that you haven’t heard from me in so long because I have been busy and buried with adulthood, but the truth is that I haven’t written anything about the 2019 season because it took me until last week to halfway understand the 2019 season. Crazy statistics, shifting defenses, trade deadlines, and breakout stars have just taken away any predictive understanding we thought we had coming into this year. Regardless, I studied some numbers to help you plan accordingly for the rest of the year (hopefully). These are just some statistical patterns and factoids I compiled while scrolling through ESPN’s stat site. Bye weeks probably skewed some; but I did my best to compensate through week 7, so here you go.

  • Christian McCaffrey is on pace to finish the season with 2,460 yds from scrimmage, 93 receptions, and 24 touchdowns. That is an estimated 484 points at 30 ppg.
  • Dalvin Cook, Leonard Fournette, Christian McCaffrey, Nick Chubb, and Ezekiel Elliot are the only 5 players with more rushing yards than Lamar Jackson.
  • Even with Melvin Gordon embarrassingly eating into his workload as of late, Austin Ekeler is still 6th on the season in total scoring with 160.6 fantasy points.
  • If the idiots on the Chargers’ staff would have shipped off Gordon like they should have and let Ekeler do his thing, he would be on pace for 26.5 ppg this year.
  • Only Michael Thomas and Cooper Kupp have caught more passes than Austin Ekeler.
  • Michael Thomas is on pace for 1,744 receiving yards on 142 receptions this season. The single season record for receptions is currently held by Marvin Harrison (2002) with 143.
  • The Patriots defense is actually the 10th best overall scorer in fantasy this year in default defensive scoring leagues.
  • The 49ers and Panthers are the 2nd and 3rd best scoring defenses with a combined point total of 155 points through 12 games. The Patriots have scored 148 in 7.
  • Michael Thomas is the only WR having a more fantasy friendly year than Chris Godwin, who has thus far posted a 16-200-2 line better than his “WR1” Mike Evans.
  • Mike Thomas, Chris Godwin, Cooper Kupp, and Amari Cooper are the only names higher on the WR fantasy points list than DJ Chark.
  • Russell Wilson is currently posting a 15:1 TD:Int ratio. Deondre Hopkins has thrown as many interceptions as Russell Wilson has so far this season.
  • Antonio Brown has more lawsuits pending in 2019 than he has receptions on the year.
  • Austin Hooper is 1st among tight ends in scoring this year by a margin of 20 total points over 2nd place: Darren Waller.
  • Hooper has more touchdowns this season than Zach Ertz, Travis Kelce, and George Kittle combined.
  • If Hooper and Waller were WRs, Hooper would be 4th in receptions with 46 while Waller would be 6th with 44.
  • While the current leader for MVP Russell Wilson is having arguably the season of his career (yeah, I know… I called that wrong.), he is actually 2nd in total QB rating (114.1) behind none other than: Kirk Cousins (114.3).
  • Todd Gurley and LeVeon Bell are the highest paid RBs in football not named Ezekiel Elliot, and they are currently RB17 and RB18 in fantasy points scored.
  • Leonard Fournette is 2nd in rush yards and 3rd in total yards among RBs, but he is 7th in total points because he only has 1 TD in 7 games.

Well, that’s where we stand so far. Take it all with a grain of salt though, because the way this year has played out so far reassures me that these numbers could look entirely different week in and week out. Best of luck to all. Except Tyler, because you beat me this week.

Among the Sleepers

Sleeper Picks! In short, these are what separate the men from the boys on draft day. They are also what I get most excited about in my drafts. It is easy to put together a starting lineup with all the available rankings we have in 2019, but after about round 10 (when statistics are sparse and sometimes skewed) we must start considering our picks based on potential rather than proven talent. Keep in mind that not all my choices will be round 10 or later. Anybody not being drafted as high as I believe they should be is a technical sleeper.

Before I delve into some of my sleepers for this year, though, understand a few things. First off, some sleepers I have chosen in the past have been season-winning for me while others remain comatose to this day. There is no formula for an absolute 100% on taking them, but a well-placed sleeper pick can be the difference between going 6-7 or 11-2. Secondly, my own personal formula for sleeper selection is this: potential talent=30%, potential opportunity=60% (flow of offensive scheme impacts this just as much as snap count), injury promotion or demotion=10%. I like to target guys that aren’t going to be primarily schemed around but have the potential to do well in a number 2 spot or even sustain a number 1 spot if injury calls upon their predecessors. Sometimes it’s just about opportunity. Sometimes it’s just about talent. You never really know for certain. Finally, sleepers aren’t even always the best methods to closing out late drafts. Never undervalue the handcuff, people. Ok, so here are a few that have breakout potential for me.

Jaylen Samuels-RB-Steelers

I know I am starting off bold here. Don’t think for a second that I think the James Conner show is over. However, the Steelers have a league-known reputation of running their backs into the ground. In the 3 games that Conner missed last season, Samuels averaged 16.9 non-PPR points per game. He is also a TE, so if whatever app you use let’s you plug him in at TE he is a cheat code if he gets to start at any point. He is currently only even being drafted in 12% of leagues.

Derrius Guice-RB-Redskins

This is a talent-fueled gut feeling that I can’t seem to shake. I watched him at LSU; I saw how much bigger and seemingly faster he got even before the 2018 combine. Make no mistake. If Guice recovers from his ACL tear at even 90%, he has the potential to be one of the best dual-threat backs in the entire league. Gruden is saying that he will be utilizing a 2-back system to start the season; but if Father-Time catches up to AP at any point or if Guice gets any opportunity to take control, he will inevitably do so. Explosion, cut speed, finesse. He has all three. He is projected in the 8th round as RB29 but has the potential for a 3rd round statistical season.

Jared Cook-TE-Saints

Jared Cook is 6’ 6”, 250 lbs, and has hands big enough to leave prints if he ever decided to bitch-slap a grizzly bear. He is now the TE for the all-time NFL passing leader on an offense with too many weapons to try to double cover anyone (except for maybe Mike Thomas). You see where I am going with this? Yeah, as the current TE12. Give me all those touchdowns.

Christian Kirk-WR-Cardinals

Kirk has been essentially all the gossip coming out of Cards’ camp this summer. To add to that, all Kyler Murray raves about is the on-field bromance between the two of them. I looked at Kirk’s rookie highlight reel, and most of his catches came from slants that extended the width of the field and deep post routes. Kyler Murray is being (albeit prematurely) compared to Michael Vick in his ability to throw the ball on the move and extend plays. The combination is there for some epic moments in store for Kirk, who is currently sitting at a 9th round WR37 projection.

Jameis Winston-QB- Buccaneers

Yeah. I said it. I addressed this in a previous article, but to reiterate: Winston will screw you occasionally; but when he is on, he is on. He already leads the league in deep-ball percentages over the last 3 seasons. Over that same time span, he has thrown for 300 yards in OVER half his games. Enter Bruce Arians. You know, the offensive genius who shook things up in Arizona for 5 years. Guys, this has the potential to be a total jackpot for value as Winston sits at QB18. 18. That is asinine.

Jamison Crowder-WR-Jets

We all saw how well Sam Darnold performed last season. Robby Anderson draws the cover corner and sometimes a safety on top. Chris Herndon draws a linebacker and a safety. Head Coach Adam Gase has developed his play calling style around the fact that he had Jarvis Landry at his disposal in Miami. Crowder is no Landry but certainly experienced enough to play the 1-on-1 slot role in a slot-dependent offense. He is currently WR45.

Josh Jacobs-RB-Raiders

Opportunity. Opportunity. Opportunity. Gruden is all in on him. The offense is looking more stacked by the minute. Derek Carr is apparently playing a high(er) level again. Jacobs has the make-up of a 3 down back, and he has just highlight reel after highlight reel of making defenders miss and steam rolling the ones that don’t. Is he going to return the value? Can’t say for sure. But I do know he is going to be given the chance to be a fantasy RB1 and he is projected as overall RB16.

Curtis Samuel-WR-Panthers

Tyler Boyd. Calvin Ridley. JuJu Smith-Schuster. You know what all these guys had in common last year? The WR2 flu. I think Curtis Samuel catches it this year as well. DJ Moore will apparently be on display in the preliminary Carolina air-shows this season. Eventually he will draw the doubles while everyone else tries to plug and chase down Christian McCaffrey. Who does that leave us with? Projected WR41 Curtis Samuel.

Devin Singletary-RB-Bills

To begin, last year’s Buffalo run game can’t get any worse. Also, If LeSean McCoy and Frank Gore combined their ages they would meet the requirements for federal retirement (67). Singletary came on as a speedster change of pace back into an offense that essentially only needs changes of pace and sees a ton of 3rd downs. NFL MVP? Absolutely not. Round 16 pick just in case the Bills get it together and he can stash you late season PPR points? Why not.

Draft Day Approaches

So as many of you know, it has been a very busy couple of weeks. We have essentially been buried in excitement as we closed on our new house last Friday and then had the gender reveal of little Sawyer Saturday. With all the prepping, packing, signing, unpacking, and revealing, I undoubtedly got behind on my weekly Divisional breakdowns. I sat down Saturday night to begin a new one and realized that they were boring me to death to write. Short version, I am not going to write them anymore. You guys can get better information from Matt Berry anyway. I don’t know what direction I am going to move in ultimately, but I thought that I could help you get prepared for impending drafts in the meantime (we are a month away!!). I thought about some of the drafts that I have been in and some of the questionable calls throughout the years that I have made myself or witnessed others make. In reflecting on that, I realized that people draft in categorical patterns. Here is a list of some different types of drafters that you will encounter this season. PLAN AROUND IT!

The Auto-drafter.

Let’s start with the obvious. Every league in the world has that one person that forgets he/she is in said league until at least week 4 when they stop by a buddy’s house to randomly drink beer and notice that football is on the TV. They then re-download the app to discover they are 4-0 because Yahoo drafted a squad that none of us could even dream up. Don’t let top value sit. It won’t sit long. The app won’t let it.

The Collegiate.

Most of us have been guilty at one point or another of mindlessly staring at stats and player profiles for hours on end in the days leading up to the draft. The Collegiate has been doing it since the real draft in April. I assure you. With multiple subscriptions to Fantasy rags and every downloadable app on the market, he is 17 miles ahead of the rest of us. He knows who he is going to pick. He knows who you are going to pick. He knows who Yahoo is going to pick. He. Is. Inevitable. But that’s okay friend. You have a social life.

The Biased Bigot.

We have all been this guy. Whether it payed off or not, at some point in your fantasy career you have drafted a player simply because you like them, their NFL team, their college team, or even a political stance you share with them (Real talk, people. I have seen it.). The Biased Bigot will cast away all other available talent up through half his bench to fill his team with only players he likes or is comfortably familiar with. It rarely works. Don’t do it. That is all.

The Professional Receiver.

It’s 2019. Get your mind out of the gutter, people. I am talking about people who draft volume targets to stash PPR points. It is frustrating when you lose with 12 team touchdowns because the guy you are playing scored 40 points on receptions among 3 receivers. I can’t say anything though; volume is draftable, so I draft it. This is a cheat code everyone. Enter it. You are welcome. Don’t go overboard though. If you don’t have a running back by round 4, it’s already too late for you.

The Natural Selector.

This guy is the mirror image counterpart to the Collegiate. Scenario: somebody in your league is 6-0 and you make a joke about how they spend way too much time doing research and care too much. They then inform you that they downloaded the app 2 minutes before the draft and “didn’t know much going into it.” He probably isn’t lying, so resist the urge to punch him in the face. Some are just born to choose. The rest of us just have to put in work.

The Hypochondriac.

Have you ever had a season ruined by an injury that shouldn’t have happened? Have you ever compiled a list of players you will never draft again because of this? The hypochondriac has. I actually know someone with a written and running list of players with repeatable injuries and a specific dead-to-me section. It seems a little crazy but being a David Johnson owner in 2016 (and more importantly 2017) made me understand the madness a little bit better.

The Stock Broker.

This one is interesting: Drafting overall positional value in a set order based on the highest available talent for EVERY position. For instance: WR1, RB1, QB1, TE1, WR2, RB2, TE2, Def, K1, etc. Chase. I am talking about Chase. As a general rule, Chase will select the top of each position down to everything but a kicker before he will select a second of anything. While this sounds almost ridiculous, Chase has gone to 2 Super Bowls in the last 4 years. In short, Chase, go to Wall Street and flip a coin.

And finally, The Leeroy Jenkins.

Sometimes we get blessed with a draft gem that throws the entire league for a loop. Just a shot in the dark. A homing missile with no distinct target or purpose. I love these. I have seen Tom Brady go round 1. I have seen RG3 go round 1. I have seen LeVeon Bell go round 1 while he was on strike (okay fine, I didn’t just see it. I did it. It was me.). Regardless of the pick itself, my favorite part about the Leeroy Jenkins is the confidence behind it. You know when someone makes a Leeroy Jenkins pick that they aggressively click their mouse with a smile of utmost satisfaction. They (We) see the trophy in that pick alone and they (We) don’t even understand why everyone else in the league is even trying. Go Leeroy. Go.

There you have it. What you do with this knowledge is up to you, but I promise it is real and you will encounter most of these. Draft on, world. Draft on. Check in with you soon.

NFC South

Hey everyone. This week I have decided to prequel the season for the utmost unpredictable division in the NFL: the NFC South. This division has the highest margin of error for me and anyone else who claims to know anything about it, for obvious reasons. All four teams have a reputation of playing up or down to competition levels throughout a 16 game stretch. The Saints have shifted away from that over the last few seasons, however, but they still possess an innate ability to lose to any of the other 3 at any given time. Short version: this is a hard one to write, but here goes nothing.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 10-6.

Yeah. I said it. 10-6. I think the Bucs walk away second in the division this year for one simple reason. Last year they had no oriented structure. This year they have an all-star coaching staff in 2-time Coach of the Year Bruce Arians at the helm, Byron Leftwich for Offensive Coordinator (who has only really served under Arians so Arians is actually calling the plays anyway), and Todd Bowles for Defensive Coordinator. In Bowles’ albeit unsuccessful tenure with the Jets, their defense was really the only thing anyone ever raved about. Last year, the Bucs averaged 25 PPG (12th in the league) on NOTHING but sheer offensive talent. Now for a fantasy player breakdown. Will Jameis Winston burn you? At some point, yes he will. With that being said, when he has consistency over multiple week spans, he puts up top 5 fantasy QB numbers. I love him this year and I am thinking he goes confidently as a sneaky late drafted starter. Mike Evans is extra valuable this year because of talent, size, and trust. Any time a QB has his offense reset, the adjustment period means the familiar faces get a lot balls thrown to them. With Adam Humphries and Desean Jackson out of the lineup, that leaves us with Evans as his usual WR1 self, OJ Howard rolling in touchdowns as a top 8 TE, and Chris Godwin going absolutely off as a slow starting WR2. Everyone in the world is high on Peyton Barber (and I think he has talent for sure), but it is hard for me to picture a bowling ball RB having great success in a Bruce Arians led offense. I personally think dual threat rookie Ronald Jones has more success, but since I don’t know I am staying away from both of them if I can.

Carolina Panthers: 7-9.

I am going to keep this one pretty short for word count purposes guys. I do not like the Panthers much at all this year. Ron Rivera has won 7 games or less for 5 out of the 8 seasons that he has been in Carolina, and the other 3 seasons were with a Cam Newton that cared more about winning than being a spectacle. They have made some improvements on the o-line and the defensive side of the ball, but at the end of the day I don’t see it coming together yet. There is a lot of hype around DJ Moore; but he played in all 16  games (started 10) last year and only caught 55 balls for 700 yards and 2 TDs so I just am not sold yet. Greg Olsen is 140 in Tight End years. No thanks. Now, don’t let my bland (and very possibly mistaken) opinion of the offense distract you from the fact that Christian McCaffrey deserves to go no lower than the 4th overall fantasy pick this year. Barkley, Kamara, McCaffrey, and Elliot should undoubtedly go 1-4 in any given order. McCaffrey 2018 line: 326 touches, 1,965 yards, and 13 TDs.

Atlanta Falcons: 6-10 or 9-7.

Check this out.

2016 2017 2018 2019
Record 11 and 6 10 and 5 7 and 9 ??
QB Matt Ryan Matt Ryan Matt Ryan Matt Ryan
RB DeVonta Freeman DeVonta Freeman Tevin Coleman Devonta Freeman
Tevin Coleman Tevin Coleman Devonta Freeman (IR) Out for most of season Ito Smith
WR Julio Jones Julio Jones Julio Jones Julio Jones
Mohammed Sanu Mohammed Sanu Calvin Ridley Calvin Ridley

 

I don’t like them for a super bowl run regardless, but the team is clearly dependent on a healthy Devonta Freeman. That is not something I want my Fantasy stock riding on. Give me Julio as a WR1 or Ridley as a WR2 and leave the rest alone. Also, 28-3. Always remember.

New Orleans Saints. 14-2.

Here we go. For the last 2 seasons, the Saints have been not only the best offense in the NFL but also the absolute most fun to watch. I apparently disagree with most people in thinking that the loss of Mark Ingram is not going to change that at all. If anything, I think it gives us more clarity on how to play the New Orleans backfield. For starters, Latavius Murray has averaged 4 YPC over the last 5 seasons behind God-awful o-lines so I think he is good to cover the yardage between the gaps that Mark Ingram posted. He isn’t also a pass catcher like Ingram could be, though, so that just means that Alvin Kamara will have an even bigger mouth to feed from the backfield (not that he needs one). Remember last year when Michael Thomas caught the most passes in the NFL with 125? Yeah, he is still my WR1 this year; and if I manage to land either him or DeAndre Hopkins I will giggle like a preteen at a Jonas Brothers concert. Drew Brees is still the all-time NFL passing leader, so he is probably a safe QB1. Kamara could go number 1 overall and no one would call you crazy. In my opinion, the Jared Cook addition will actually be the most impactful change to the offense and may honestly take away from some of Thomas’s endzone production. This is where the Saints become tricky though. They have about 6 constant mouths to feed and only these 3 will be week in/week out with production. Look for names like Taysum Hill, Ted Ginn, and TreQuan Smith to have matchup dependent Low-floor, high ceiling games. Predict at your own risk.

Ok guys, there you go. The absolute truth (ha ha) about the NFC South.

AFC West

Here goes installment 2 of my preseason divisional breakdowns. I hope you enjoy and let me know what you think. These are my predictions and observations for the AFC West.

Denver Broncos: 6-10.

Guys, I am pretty much starting with the Broncos to get them out of the way. While I respect the organization for somehow staying afloat post-Manning, I just can’t commend them for any measure of talent level on offense. I did have the lucky privilege of drafting Phillip Lindsay in round 8 or 9 last year to receive round 4 production from him, though. Lindsay is a beast for his size. He was undoubtedly the most underrated RB from the 2018 season. He very quietly averaged 5.4 YPC and was very reliable as a pass catcher. The general idea was a 2-back system between him and Royce Freeman (who isn’t half bad either), but Lindsay quite literally ran away with the job and never looked back. He is the clear cut RB1 this year and I like him as the same dependable RB2 he was for me all season long in 2018. Do I think Joe Flacco is better than Case Keenum? Honestly, not really; but he does come with plenty of experience that Keenum doesn’t have in the same run attack-occasional deep ball package that Denver made themselves famous for last year. Drafting him? Nope. Emmanuel Sanders (assuming he is healthy enough) and Courtland Sutton are going to share the majority of the targets in the air, but it doesn’t really matter who is more productive because they are both matchup-dependent flex plays until further notice. If I’m wrong I’m wrong. Irrelevant side note, my Wisconsin boy Troy Fumagalli is currently TE2 in Denver, so this year might be the year!

Kansas City Chiefs: 13-3.

Ok. Now that the Broncos are out of the way, let’s dive right into the powerhouses of the division. It makes no sense to start anywhere but KC. First off, there is Pat Mahomes. 2018 MVP. 5000 yards. 50 Touchdowns. I am feeling pretty confident that he is my number 1 gunslinger again this year. The guy has a rocket launcher for an arm, has solid blocking as a general rule, and is faster than 85-90% of the linebackers that do come his way when he needs to get out. The combination of Andy Reid’s brilliance in play design and Pat’s otherworldly talent pretty much makes any other Chief’s uniform fantasy relevant. Damien Williams is an RB1 all the live long day. I would say this if I didn’t know his name or anything else about him outside the fact that he is KC’s starting back. Jamaal Charles, Charkandrick West, Kareem Hunt, Spencer Ware, Damien Williams. Collectively this group has averaged over 22 PPR fantasy points per game in each of their tenures as a KC starter since Andy Reid moved in, so expect this pattern to play on repeat with Mahomes opening up the field every week. Travis Kelce is the number 1 TE. No explanation needed. Sammy Watkins should actually play up this year with more consistency after his big deal and the fact that we still don’t know how many games Tyreek Hill will miss. To advise you on Hill, I think he is a late 2nd rounder if he misses 4 or less, and I will be moving him down one round for every week he misses after that.

Los Angeles Chargers: 11-5.

I have absolutely no problem admitting that I am a bandwagon Chargers fan. I have told people for years that Rivers is an elite QB that can handle any defense. He has a temper problem, but more times than not it fuels him rather than trips him up. What I respect the most about him, though, is the fact that he isn’t trying to trick you. LA ran 4 basic sets for the entirety of their 12-4 campaign last season. While they had the occasional reverse or HB switch every few weeks, most of the success came from Rivers simply imposing his will down the field for score after score. The craziest part is that he does it to win, not for fans or jersey sales. To put that in perspective, he has close to double the amount of passing yards on his career (54,656) than the average number of tickets bought for a 2018 Chargers home game (32,768). Side note, he has only thrown under 4000 yards once since 2008. Now, on to Melvin Gordon. I actually guessed the contract drama would happen here after LeVeon Bell blew up the league last year, given the time of Gordon’s contract renewal and his “value” to the team. The situations couldn’t be more similar though. His backup, Austin Ekeler, has averaged more YPC (5.3) over the last two seasons than Gordon himself (4.5). If Gordon stays, he is a late first rounder and please handcuff Ekeler late FOR SURE. If he leaves, treat Ekeler like James Conner last year. Hunter Henry will be a solid TE1 if he is healthy, but that’s a big IF. He has had plenty of time to rehab and rest at this point but only time will tell if he can stay on the field for any extended period of time. Keenan Allen is obviously the focal point of the pass attack, but I am always leery given his injury history as well. When he is on, he is on, though. In his past 2 seasons he has combined for 199 receptions, 2600 yards, and 12 scores. The two seasons before that, though, he played in 5 games. You see my dilemma?

Oakland Raiders: 8-8.

Last and almost least, the Oakland Raiders. I gave them 8-8 because I honestly have no clue. We are talking about a Gruden experiment that I can see the logic in but am just still not completely sold. Looking at the layout of the skill positions made me immediately think about the 2016 Bills. I know the comparison is soft but stick with me for a sec. The idea was to have a semi-mobile QB in Tyrod Taylor have patience in and out of the pocket to spread out streak receivers in Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods. As bad as the whole team was overall, we saw the concept work from time to time. I like this idea in talking about a recuperated Derek Carr (I know, I know.) waiting long enough for Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams to make some magic happen. We all know they can.  While Brown is the obvious WR1 until further notice, I won’t be taking him as high as he has gone up until now because a change in system is a risk no matter the talent. The actual key in the offense though was that the 2016 Bills relied heavily on a then-explosive LeSean McCoy to shift defensives in and draw spies to cut off screens and wheel routes. The only person on the Raiders roster that in any way fits the description of a young Shady McCoy is rookie Josh Jacobs. If this recipe works, then Jacobs could be in Rookie of the Year contention. If it fails, the Jon Gruden still makes 10 million dollars this year. He is the real MVP.

Thanks for tuning in guys. See you next week.

NFC West 2019

July and August are the longest months in the year. Literally. They are the only two months in the year that sequentially give you 62 days in two months of the same year. But more importantly, they suck for football. We have to spend July waiting for the preseason to arrive, and then we have to spend August living the nightmare that we have a whole other month before real football floods our TVs and Fantasy Apps. Is it too early to draft? Yes. Is it too early to be thinking about it? Probably. But I do anyway. Here are some of my ramblings on the NFC West for 2019. I threw some record predictions in there too.

NFC West

Los Angeles Rams. 12-4.

At the end of last season, I predicted that the Rams were going to head straight to the ditches after not winning the Super Bowl that Sean McVay invested everything he had to win. As I am looking at the 2019 roster, I realize that I owe Sean a huge apology. The offense looks exactly the same, but the proven election of Gerald Everett as the clear TE1 will drop any question marks on who to stream as the starter. Most of my prediction was based off of the cliff fall of their one-season defense but adding Eric Weddle in the loss of Ndamakung Suh will merely shift the scheme from a dual threat pass rush to a hard-hitting coverage in every zone of the backfield. Essentially, they are moving from forcing the QB to make mistakes to allowing him time to be outsmarted. I like it. The fantasy problem I see is that the cast is still too star-studded. Sure. Brandin Cooks, Robert Woods, and Cooper Kupp will all have their big games but I don’t foresee the consistent production we received last year given that the rest of the league has had a year now to study the scheme shifts and overall layout of the offense. Jared Goff is still going to zip the ball for yards and scores (I am thinking QB 8 or 9), and 2019 Todd Gurley will still be 85% of 2017/2018 Todd Gurley given any glass knee issues or overplay. HANDCUFF him with Darrell Henderson though, because that knee will eventually be an issue.

Arizona Cardinals. Either 3-13 0r 11-5.

First of all, in looking at the 2019 roster compared to the 2018 roster/output, things can only go up for the Cardinals. That being said, the offense is now riddled with question mark after question mark. Will Kyler Murray play to the standard that he set for himself? Is Kliff Kingsbury the QB whisperer/offensive strategist that I personally believe him to be? Was last year a sign of the times for Larry Fitzgerald or was it just a result of having ABSOLUTELY no help from under center or any of the WRs around him? Is David Johnson finally going to have the field opened up enough for him to be the 30-point weekly RB we saw a few seasons ago? If the universe lets us answer all of these questions with a positive outcome, then I think we will get a 35-point offense on a weekly basis. The pieces are potentially there to build a Ferrari and I like Kingsbury in the driver seat. Just know that the engine could blow before it leaves the starting line, so the fantasy risk matches the reward. In wrapping up, I can tell you two things with certainty. Arizona is going to throw the ball this year (a lot); and if the Ferrari shows any sign of gaining speed then Christian Kirk is my WR sleeper of the year. Christian Kirk. You heard it here first. Maybe.

San Francisco 49ers. 10-6.

At first glance, the 2019 offensive depth chart for the 49ers looked like a drifting buoy of mediocrity in the vanilla sea of despair. I honestly had to stare at it for several minutes before I could begin to form any talking points at all. So I decided to talk through it the same way that Kyle Shanahan seems to be building his offense-old school from the inside out. In the trenches, the 49ers have 35 years of combined league experience among their starting 5 linemen. That is 35 years of wall building protection for: Jimmy Garoppolo. Some are saying that Garoppolo is still unproven, and some are stupid. Anyone who knows me knows that I think a healthy Garoppolo is a top 5 QB. He was, in fact, during his 5-game stint at the end of the 2017 season (You know, when the GOAT decided he was good enough to be a threat and chased him out of Foxborough? Yeah, that time.). The lack of receivers is what brings the dryness to the offense, But Garoppolo learned from the literal epitome of great QBs with very few targets on how to turn simplicity into greatness on the outside and in the slot. The only other aspect of the offense is the backfield, and I think that sending Carlos Hyde on his way to clear the way for Matt Breida while bringing in Tevin Coleman to play the exact same part that he has played in Atlanta for years was the best possible move the 49ers could have made this offseason.

Seattle Seahawks. 7-9.

I do not like the Seahawks this year. Plain and simple. They may be the team (or one of many) that completely proves me wrong, but I just have a bad feeling, guys. They will win some games, but I think they take an overall hit this season. We have been able to dodge a serious Russell Wilson injury for a very long time now and I just have a feeling that it is coming this year. He hasn’t been sacked less than 40 times since the 2012 season and last year it toppled 50. His “Panic button” Doug Baldwin is no longer there for when he is chased out of the pocket. The toss up for his number one target this season will be a tiny speedster in Tyler Lockett or an unproven rookie in DK Metcalf. Don’t get me wrong. I think Metcalf’s potential is limitless, but he has no one to guide him and develop him. He is operating under the pressure of HAVING to be great because Lockett isn’t getting it done alone. The RB core will look just like it did at the end of last season, but the combo of Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny won’t last through week 8 because Pete Carroll is going to remorselessly run their legs off. When RB depth is inevitably too shallow, Wilson won’t be able to carry all of the weight alone. Even worse, Wilson gets hurt early and the weight of the offense falls on either Paxton Lynch or Geno Smith. Remember them? Yeah, no one does.

That’s my way too early take on the NFC West guys. Stay Tuned.

18 Facts from 2018

Admit it guys and gal (That’s you Lindsey. I’m talking to you.), you missed me right?! So due to some life stuff and the general business of constant adulting, I obviously didn’t get to write this season; but what a season it was. From the Bell drama boosting an unknown James Conner into 2019 1st round pick status to an undrafted rookie Phillip Lindsay making the pro bowl while playing for a wildly vanilla offense, 2018 gave us a lot of gems in skewed statistics. I have had some fun in my recent free time looking at some of the randomness of this season. If I could borrow your eyes for about 5 minutes then allow me to share some of the expected numbers along with some of the WTH-just-happened stats. I referenced NFL Focus for the numbers so if you find an error blame them. These are in no particular order since everyone knows organizational skills don’t keep a top bullet point on my resume.

1. DeAndre Hopkins finished the season with 2 fumbles, which means he finished the season with 2 more fumbles than he had dropped passes. Yes. 0 dropped passes.

2. Only one NFL receiver finished the 16 game season averaging over 100 YPG. That receiver is Julio Jones. (Yes Tyler, I’m aware.)

3. Big Ben threw for 5,129 passing yards, more of which went to Juju Smith-Schuster (1,426) than to Antonio Brown (1,297).

4. Despite being the yardage leaders in their respective categories, neither Big Ben nor Julio Jones made the playoffs. Ouch.

5. The only other passer to surmount 5,000 yards on the season was Patrick Mahommes (5,097); no secret but just a friendly reminder that this was his annual debut. So yeah, bring on the future.

6. While we are on Pat Mahommes, he threw just as many touchdowns this season (50) as Andrew Luck (39) and Marcus Mariota (11) combined. His TD to completion ratio was 50:383 so he threw a 6er on 1 out of every 8 completions.

7. Michael Thomas finished the season with an 85% catch rate in a run first offense.

8. Only 3 Tight Ends finished the season with 1000+ yards: Travis Kelce (shocker), Zach Ertz (shocker), and George Kittle (Yes Chase, I’m aware). Kittle dropped these numbers playing with 3 different quarterbacks on the season.

9. The 2 most efficient running backs in the NFL from a PPR fantasy perspective were Saquon Barkley (374) and Christian McCaffrey (373). Neither of these two made the playoffs.

10. 2018 was James Conner’s backfield debut. Averaging in projections for the 14 quarters he missed at the end of the season he would have been on track to score a 335 on the 16 game year. In 2017, Leveon Bell scored a 342 on the year; and in 2016, Bell scored a 317 on the year. Leveon Bell wants to make $17 million a year. James Conner currently makes $650,000 a year with bonus incentive. Good call Mike Tomlin. Good call.

11. Of RBs with at least 130 rush attempts the 2 most efficient backs this season based on YPC value were Aaron Jones (5.47) and Phillip Lindsay (5.4). Green Bay just hired a young aggressive ground-pound coach with both expectation and ambition. Enter 2019 Free Aaron Jones Campaign.

12. For the second year in a row, Alvin Kamara eclipsed 1,500 total yards while competing in a 65/35 timeshare with Mark Ingram over that span. If you are a points person (or a winner), then also note that he has 162 receptions and 31 touchdowns in 2 seasons.

13. Tyreek Hill finished the season 10th in receptions (87) but 4th in receiving yards (1,479) and 3rd in touchdowns (12).

14. Somehow Tyreek Hill wasn’t the long ball king. Of receivers with at least 40 receptions, he actually came in 5th on the year in the yards per reception category. His 17.00 yards per catch on 87 receptions got beat out by Desean Jackson (18.88 on 41 catches), Josh Gordon (17.98 on 41 catches), Mike Evans (17.72 on 86 catches), and John Brown (17.02 on 42 catches). Oh, let’s not forget that Mike Evans and and Desean Jackson both play for the Buccaneers.

15. Pat Mahommes averaged an astronomical 13.3 yards per completion this season. He came in second in this category to Ryan Fitzpatrick. Yes. Fitzmagic averaged 14.4 yards per completion.

16. Despite the inexplicable statistics of points 15 and 16, the Buccaneers were not even in the playoff discussion as they finished the season 5-11.

17. Zach Ertz (You know, that Tight End guy?) had more receptions (116) this season than any Wide Receiver in the entire NFL not named Michael Thomas (125).

18. The Colts are easily the most improved team in the trenches. Throw in a name brand WR2 and some off season development for Marlon Mack and you have my AFC pick of 2019. Also thanks to Ryan’s Facebook for the photos.

I hope you enjoyed it guys. Here’s to this year and my hopeful Threepeat next season.

Never forget, Chase.

Never forget.

Never.

Guru Gone for now.