2017 Fantasy Football Player Projecitons Notes

  • Hi Folks, It's getting close to that magical time of the year.  Are you ready for some football?!? Throughout the preseason we'll be discussing Player Projection changes, Camp Developments, Player Box Scores (preseason games), and Fantasy Strategy. The goal is to express our rationale as we update our player projections software program with the most up to date player intelligence. Stay Tuned!  -Anthony

    9/06/2017

    Undervalued WR Larry Fitzgerald

    A Look at ADP 2017 by Kyle Elfrink
    This week ... My final ADP report looks at the final ADP numbers, searching for the players I think will overachieve or underachieve their current draft slot.
    · Who Will Beat Out Their ADP?

    Kelvin Benjamin (ADP #53)
    A year ago, I spent the preseason telling folks to take it easy with the expectations for Benjamin in his first year off of major knee surgery. Despite his down season, he still finished with 7 scores and over 940 yards. Only nine WRs in all the NFL beat both of those numbers. Despite his lost year and his down year, Benjamin is still easily the top outside option in the Carolina passing game. The Panthers are also scheduled to face a slew of very weak secondaries over the course of the next four months. There’s a very good chance of 80+ catches, 1,000+, and 8+ scores.

    Larry Fitzgerald (ADP #46)
    Quite simply, the top pass-catcher from the year before should be going in the top-35 the following season (PPR, of course). Especially when the WR has already built a certain Canton-bound Hall of Fame resume. Especially when the WR is still working with the same pass-happy offense and with the same pass-proficient QB.  Especially when the WR has never played in less than 13 games in any of his 13 previous NFL seasons. Fitzgerald is old by most all standards, but I have full trust in his professionalism, self-care, and perseverance. He’s an excellent WR2.

    Derrick Henry (ADP #91)
    Henry started to shine down the stretch last season and my expectation is that Tennessee will give him more-and-more opportunities this year. The workload on DeMarco Murray (ADP #13) has got to be scaled back this season, after a grand-total of 346 touches in ‘16. My pure gut read says that Murray is due a multi-week injury this year. Even if he stays healthy for a full 16 games, I still would slot Henry for nearly 10 scores this year as the Titans make use of his strong and sturdy rushing style.

    Rishard Matthews (ADP #116)
    Let’s go with back-to-back Titans. While Eric Decker (ADP #93) and rookie Corey Davis (ADP #112) are fresh additions and have, thus, monopolized nearly all the attention, Matthews is actually the guy you want in this offense. While no one was looking last season, the vet finished out the year with a run of 42 receptions, 626 yards, and 7 end zone dances in the final nine games. That also aligns with the moment where Marcus Mariota (ADP #68) starting to come into his own. Obviously, Matthews may not see as much love this season, but he is hugely overlooked, going barely inside the first 10 rounds.

    Andy Dalton (ADP #134)
    Dalton will never excite (just like Eli Manning and Philip Rivers), but he is a prototypical QB2 for fantasy players. I also think that he has a chance at putting forth his best season since coming into the league in 2011. I’ll call for a return to 2013 when the ‘Red Raider’ posted over 30 TD passes and nearly went off for 4,300 yards. Keeping A.J. Green (ADP #10) and Tyler Eifert (ADP #67) on the field is critical. But, if that pair is out there 90% of the time, the Bengals should have a near-upper-end offense. Last year, they plummeted to a ranking of 24th in points scored. This year, I’ll call them inside the top 10. That means Dalton is an absolute ‘get’ as a QB2.

    Sterling Shepard (ADP #145)
    It’s tough ‘being green’ (of course) and it’s tough ‘being three’, as well. Shepard is solidly slotted as the 3rd receiving option in the Giants assumed pass-heavy attack. But, neither Odell Beckham (ADP #6) nor Brandon Marshall (ADP #70) profiles as a picture of pure health. Marshall was hugely banged up last season and OBJ is already limping and could miss Week 1. Enter Shepard who turned in a very solid rookie season of 65 catches and 8 touchdowns. That used to be noteworthy, but some recent rookie WR efforts have spoiled us. With a full year under his belt, Shepard should truly grab and hold a major role if either of the two big dogs ahead of him stumble. Talent, offense, and access to a role makes him an excellent late-round target.

    Latavius Murray (ADP #157)
    When it rains, it pours. All discussion of the Minnesota backfield centers on frosh Dalvin Cook (ADP #33). And, honestly, he deserves it. He’s my pick for the best rookie RB to get in 2017. But, I feel that Murray has been utterly discredited and entered bargain-basement territory because of all the attention sent to the Vikes’ starter. Murray is not a difference-making talent, but he did pound in a dozen TDs last year in Oakland. Simple opportunity could lead to an every weekend FLEX play in a lot of leagues out there. At the very least, the Cook owner should ‘cuff and commandeer the Minnesota backfield.

    T.J. Yeldon (ADP #214)
    I could easily repeat for Yeldon what you just read on Murray. Yeldon registers as a ‘let-down’ in the minds’ of nearly every fantasy player. That’s fair, but he should not be shuffled off into the dustbins of history just yet. He’s backing up a notorious limper in Leonard Fournette (ADP #23) and is a stronger bet than Chris Ivory (ADP #284) to see the football this year no matter who is healthy or not. It’s worth reminding PPR players, too, that Yeldon posted 50 catches last year. He’s a #214 pick that has a realistic shot at a top-100 finish.
    · Who Will Fail to Hit Their ADP?

    Dez Bryant (ADP #20)
    From the top, the Dallas Cowboys were a hugely efficient offensive attack last year. I would never bet on that continuing into this season. I’m not saying they’ll be a bust offensively, but I think that the trio of Dak Prescott (ADP #92), Ezekiel Elliott (ADP #15), and the Big D O-line will all take a step back this year (no matter what becomes of Elliott’s ‘suspension’). All of this will affect Bryant. He’s also reached the point in his career where I worry about the wear-down effect. He can still be a physical challenge and fantasy marvel when healthy, but I’m just down on him being healthy enough this year. Facts are facts and Bryant has missed 10 games in the past two years, while also failing to complete a handful of others. I’m just out on the price tag here.

    T.Y. Hilton (ADP #25)
    Without Andrew Luck (ADP #84), what can Hilton possibly be? My guess is, not much. This is no crushing indictment of Hilton as a player. He’s been a full-blown fantasy stud for four consecutive years, but like so many others at his position, that standing is forever tied to the man who is slinging him the football. I, personally, have major doubts about Luck playing 10 games this year. And, I also double-doubt his ability to post Luck-like numbers even when he’s taking snaps. Frankly, I’m not buying the bum shoulder getting (and, staying) healthy.

    Marshawn Lynch (ADP #36)
    I love the moments of Lynch’s career ... running over the opposition, the visor, the TDs, the speed, the dual-threat nature of his game. But, I feel those moments are likely done. After sitting out last year, Lynch is back and being welcomed with open arms by Oakland. The Raiders certainly need him after losing Murray and his dozen TDs of a year ago. Lynch is a decent be to start strong, but I’m not sold on his ability to sustain things for the long-haul. To cut to the chase, I think he loves the idea of being back in the NFL, but I don’t think he’s really ready to be back in the NFL. It’s also worth reminding ... his last go-around in Seattle was full of injuries and a major lack of success. Now in his 30s and with a year away, I’m staying away.

    Joe Mixon (ADP #44)
    I’ve said this on my radio show a few times in the preseason and I’ll stick with it. Who was the last offensive selection from the Big 12 to actually live up to expectations in the NFL? The conference has failed to produce a notable fantasy asset for at least five years. Sure, the league features all sorts of scoring, but it comes against embarrassingly mis-matched defenses. You can’t really trust what you see from a player if he’s doing it in the Big 12. That’s just one dent on Mixon. Additionally, he has to fend off two proven holdovers in the Queen City, Jeremy Hill (ADP #155) and Gio Bernard (ADP #149). Whether or not you agree with the decision, the Bengals’ coaching staff is going to make use of all three. Mixon is a very interesting talent and has a chance at immediate, Year One success ... but, his cost is sky-high considering the uncertainty of his set-up in 2017.

    Matt Ryan (ADP #54)
    Coming off an MVP-level showing, Ryan’s standing in the fantasy community has turned a 180 from 12 months ago. Simply said, he wasn’t that awful going into last year and he’s equally, not that great going into this season. Don’t buy the career-best season. Sure, buy him as a QB1, but don’t invest in the repeat showing. The Falcons will face a much tougher schedule this and there will be minor growing pains with the departure of offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, who is now leading the charge in San Francisco.

    KC Chiefs (ADP #132)
    I could have put any of the top-5 team defenses in this column.  I chose KC because of what they’re up against this year ... two games vs Derek Carr and Philip Rivers, road trips to face Tom Brady, Eli Manning, and Dak Prescott, and home battles versus Kirk Cousins and Ben Roethlisberger.  That’s nine (of 16) games that I would not choose to have the Chiefs as my starting defense. Why invest in that so early??
     

    You can hear Kyle each weeknight on ‘The SiriusXM Fantasy Drive’ from 8-10 ET, Sirius 210, XM 87.
     


    9/05/2017

    Undervalued WR Ted Ginn | New Orleans Saints
    Ginn has been a durable receiver in his career, missing just 9 games over 10 seasons. Though he’s bounced around teams mainly as a returner, he’s managed to increase his use in the passing game the past two seasons. Joining the Saints #1 ranked passing offense from 2016 should only help him have his best receiving season yet. Ginn has been an inconsistent fantasy producer over the years, but coming off two of his best seasons as a receiver, Ginn is now going to be catching from the best passing quarterback he’s ever played with. With Willie Snead suspended for 3 games, Ginn will open the season as the number two option for the Saints. (Blended ADP 189th – WR #57)
    - Jeremy McGoldrick

    September Special Note: With injuries and playing time situations changing, be sure to click on the WEB UPDATE icon in the upper right hand corner of the software to get the latest projections/rankings before you head to your draft! Software Updates today include: 1. ADP updates from Yahoo, ESPN, NFFC, CBS, MFL. 2. Depth Chart update.

    Week 1 Player Projections and Rankings are posted and can be found in our member area.

     

    The Oakland Raiders and placekicker Sebastian Janikowski are at odds over restructuring his contract, he could be released in the next day or so. Josh Lambo is a leading candidate to replace him. Kansas City runningbacks Kareem Hunt, Charcandrick West and C.J. Spiller are expected to be part of a comittee to start the season, which throws a little cold water on Hunt out of the gate. Le'Veon Bell says he was born ready, he is expected to handle his full workload. Obviously after missing the entire camp and preseason, a soft tissue injury is a big concern. Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas sat out the Monday practice because of a tender groin. He is however expected to be ready for the opening bell. RB Jonathan Williams went unclaimed on Monday, which is quite surprising when you consider the talent and the need by several teams in the league with questionable RBs on their roster, such as the Giants. There is speculation that he might be damaged goods. Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins told reporters he is "1,000 percent" recovered from a thumb injury. Chargers rookie WR Mike Williams (back) is still a few weeks away from a possible return. Colts TE Eric Swoope, was placed on IR, and is not expected to return until November at the earliest. For Doyle owners, this softens the blow of not having Andrew Luck for __ games. WR Odell Beckham Jr. (ankle) didn't practice Monday, his status is still tenuous, but he's likely going to play barring a setback. TE Travis Kelce (calf) was limited on Monday, but is expected to be ready for week 1. Texans D'Onta Foreman (groin) and Alfred Blue (ankle) are both questionable for week 1. TE Tyler Eifert (knee) is practicing again. Buffalo Bills WR Jordan Matthews (chest) is still waiting for medical clearance before he can fully participate in team drills.

    September Special Note: With injuries and playing time situations changing, be sure to click on the WEB UPDATE icon in the upper right hand corner of the software to get the latest projections/rankings before you head to your draft!


    9/04/2017

    QB Marcus Mariota  posted a solid season in '16 with 10 Quality Starts out of 15 games. Points per Attempt is elite (.68), and his 3rd Down production is as well (106 QB Rating) with 94 fantasy Points. Schedule improves slightly to a C+ and offensive line is one of the best in the league (A). Still a run first offense, but if you translate his production and increase his pass attempts to 600, Mariota would be a top 5 QB. Current late 7th round ADP, grab in early 7th round

    Fantistics' Anthony Perri has released his Golden Nuggets article highlighting the players that we like a little more than everyone else. Members can click here for that report.

    In probably one of the more surprising moves this weekend, the Bills waived RB Jonathan Williams, who was expected to be their #2 running back behind LeSean McCoy. it's only a matter of time before someone else picks him up. Matt Jones was signed by the Colts, but he's probably 4th on the depth chart right now. Former Giant Will Tye was signed by the Jets, with ASJ suspended to open the season, Tye might get some early action. Unappealing handcuff, Mike Tolbert is in line to back up McCoy. The Titans placed WR Harry Douglas on season ending IR. Former Bucs 2017 5th round pick, RB Jeremy McNichols was signed to the 49ers practice squad. No fantasy implications here. The kicker carousel continues, The Dolphins waived Andrew Franks and signed Cody Parker to be their place kicker. Former Seahawks RB Alex Collins signed with the Raven's practice squad. The Bears waived Jeremy Langford. The Chiefs re-signed CJ Spiller, but his reuniting may be short with Jonathan Williams looking for a home. Steelers signed RB Fitzgerald Toussaint to their practice squad. And finally WR Josh Doctson is practicing with the Redskins again.  The former TCU star has been disappointing this preseason, with only 1 reception and 2 targets.

    September Special Note: With injuries and playing time situations changing, be sure to click on the WEB UPDATE icon in the upper right hand corner of the software to get the latest projections/rankings before you head to your draft!

    Do you play in a Yahoo League? Our Yahoo Module connects our software to your Yahoo Draft room making it effortless to draft that winning team.

     


    9/03/2017

    WR Kelvin Benjamin CAR Benjamin did improve his reception rate slightly in the 2nd half with a 59% completion rate, which does offer a glimmer of hope with his 14.9 YPR. However his 3rd down reception rate of 47% is very concerning. Has big time potential...monster potential in the Red Zone, consider that he had a 35% Red Zone success rate last season despite the issues. Does he have the discipline to get in tune and dominate? Mid 5th round ADP,  Target late in the 4th round.

    Fantistics' Anthony Perri has released his Golden Nuggets article highlighting the players that we like a little more than everyone else. Members can click here for that report.

    Remember that the projections and rankings are changing daily in the  Fantistics Draft Advisory Software, just click on the WEB UDPATE icon (top right of the software to get the latest updates.

    Saturday was an important decision-making day for NFL teams, as they had to make decision on who would be cut and who would go to IR...Andrew Luck was activated from the PUP List, but isn’t expected to play week one. The Colts still seem concerned about Luck as they traded Phillip Dorsett to New England for Jacoby Brissett. Brissett could emerge as an option if Luck misses significant time, while Dorsett gets a change of scenery and fantasy owners should take a wait and see approach on him to see what his role in the New England receiving corps will be...Brock Osweiler signed a one-year deal with Denver, becoming the backup to Trevor Simien while Paxton Lynch is out...Veteran Running Backs C.J. Spiller and Matt Jones were released by the Chiefs and Redskins, respectively, on Saturday. Both will probably find another team to join but hold no fantasy value...Jeremy McNichols, the 5th round pick of Tampa Bay, was released on Saturday. Expect him to find his way onto someone’s practice squad team but can be released in all formats, including dynasty...Titans WR Tajae Sharpe was placed on season-ending IR with a right foot injury. He wasn’t expected to do much this season with the emergence of Taywan Taylor...Rookie Travis Rudolph was released by the Giants, despite having a good preseason. He fell victim to a numbers game but should not have many issues finding a new team or practice squad to join...Sammie Coates was traded from Pittsburgh to Cleveland. He’s a deep ball threat that could emerge as a deep WR option for fantasy later this season...Denver rookie Carlos Henderson was placed on season-ending IR with a thumb injury. He was competing for the WR3 job and will have to wait another year to compete. He’s worth holding onto in dynasty formats, if you have the room.  Skeeter Robinson

    The Kicker Carousel!

    Starting kickers who lost jobs on Saturday include: Nick Novak, Josh Lambo, Cody Parkey, Mike Nugent. Kickers that won a starting gig: LAC Younghoe Koo, HOU Ka'imi Fairbairn, NYG Aldrick Rosas, CIN Randy Bullock, TBB Nick Folk, CLE Zane Gonzalez, CHI Connor Barth, NYJ Chandler Catanzaro

    Of the group, the Charger and Giant kickers could become fantasy relevant, but only in a 2 kicker league.


    9/02/2017

    WR Crowder,Jamison WAS Jamison was solid all around with 9 Quality Starts in 2016. 68% Reception rate on 99 targets with 1.92 Points per Target, and 12.1 Points per game. In critical 3rd down situations he averaged 16 Yards per catch along with a 61% reception rate, and 59 of his 194 fantasy points came in these situations. Some feel that Terrelle Pryor who is listed as the team's #1 receiver, is the man here, but we believe that it's Crowder who will perform like a number 1 receiver. Current 6th round ADP ,target in mid-late 6th round

    Fantistics' Anthony Perri has released his Golden Nuggets article highlighting the players that we like a little more than everyone else. Members can click here for that report.

    Remember that the projections and rankings are changing daily in the  Fantistics Draft Advisory Software, just click on the WEB UDPATE icon (top right of the software to get the latest updates.

    One of the top fantasy stories from Friday was the three-game suspension that was handed down to Willie Snead because of an offseason DUI.  He’ll sit out the first three contests to start the season, which bumps up Ted Ginn and Coby Fleener at the beginning of the year.  This also makes Snead a better value selection should he drop as a result of the punishment.  Martavis Bryant was on the other end Friday as he got a full reinstatement honored, which puts him on track to play week one.  With zero games last year and just 11 in 2015, it’ll be interesting to see what Bryant can do should he stay on the field for a full season this year.  Those drafting this weekend can bump him up a bit on their draft board.  Fantistics software is projecting him just inside the top 20 among receivers.  The Jets upgraded their ugly receiving corps on Friday trading for Jermaine Kearse from Seattle.  Kearse joins Robby Anderson and a slew of other unproven receivers, which is a better spot for him than Seattle.  Because of the potential for catch up games this season, NYJ receivers could produce some decent PPR stats.  Kearse is now a consideration for a roster spot late in drafts.  As teams trim down, we will continue to see players dropped from rosters, and it started on Friday as we saw the Browns drop Brock Osweiler.  With DeShone Kizer in charge of the offense, we’ll see Cody Kessler in the backup role this year.  The Bears parted ways with Victor Cruz as they move forward with Kevin White and Kendall Wright.  We could see the Bears tight ends stepping up this season with rookie Adam Shaheen the most exciting option over the long haul.  In San Francisco, Carlos Hyde continues to look like a value pick as the 20th RB off the board.  The 49ers released Tim Hightower on Friday, which makes rookie Joe Williams and Matt Breida the next in line.  Brian Hoyer will be behind center for San Francisco to start the season, but we could see rookie C.J. Beathard at some point after the team released Matt Barkley on Friday.  With the release of Chris Johnson in Arizona and Knile Davis/Fitzgerald Toussaint in Pittsburgh, Kerwynn Williams and James Conner are moving up their depth charts into the top backup role for their teams.  Both backs should be considered top handcuffs for anyone into that strategy.  Other rookies in need of mentioning are Dede Westbrook and Aaron Jones from Thursday’s games.  Westbrook had arguably one of the best preseason efforts of any receiver out there, as he finished things off on Thursday night with 115 yards and a touchdown on 6 receptions.  Though he has some competition ahead of him, Westbrook is a receiver worth monitoring this season.  Jones is behind Ty Montgomery and Jamaal Williams, but his 8 carries for 48 yards and receiving touchdown on Thursday should bring him closer in the battle with Williams for the backup spot.  Jeremy McGoldrick


    9/01/2017

    Corey Davis (TEN) – The fifth overall pick will play Week 1. That’s great news for fantasy owners and for Marcus Mariota.  In many ways, Davis could not have gone to a better team as the Titans’ biggest need (for seemingly more than a decade) has been a stud WR.  Depending on his learning curve, Davis could be a legitimate WR2/3 draft selection in standard non keeper formats.  Right now, he is penciled in as starting alongside WR Rishard Matthews, but do note the presence of veteran WR Eric Decker will be in the mix.  There are a lot of moving parts in Tennessee, but talent predominantly wins out. As with most rookie WRs, they start off slow but at some point during the season (Michael Thomas from New Orleans is a great example from last year), they figure the NFL out and start contributing.  I still see the Titans running game ruling the fantasy roost in Tennessee, but the Titans want to be more dynamic in terms of throwing the ball and now have the talent to pull it off.  I would start Davis off as a WR3 in larger formats but would remain patient with him in case of the obligatory rookie hiccups.  - JSingh

    Fantistics ranks him as the 30th best WR in a PPR format, with a $17 Auction Value. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    Remember that the projections and rankings are changing daily in the  Fantistics Draft Advisory Software, just click on the WEB UDPATE icon (top right of the software to get the latest updates.

     


    8/31/2017

    WR Doug Baldwin has posted a good mix of yards and TDs the last 2 seasons. Consistency is about average (7-8 Quality Starts a season), yet could be so much more if he saw an increase in targets. Consider that he has posted a 75+% Completion rate and 12 YPR each of the last two seasons, and he's even better in pressure, 3rd down situations, with a 78% completion rate and 14 YPR. Oh did we mention his absurd 35% Red Zone Success rate? Completely underutilized with only 125 targets last season, could be a top 3 WR if given 160+ targets in 2017. So yes his current 3.01 ADP screams V-A-L-U-E.

    Fantistics ranks him as the 8th best WR in a PPR format. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    Remember that the projections and rankings are changing daily in the  Fantistics Draft Advisory Software, just click on the WEB UDPATE icon (top right of the software to get the latest updates.

    Joe Haden was cut by the Browns and subsequently scooped up by the Steelers on Wednesday.  He signed a three year contract worth $27 million dollars....Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension appeal hearing has been pushed to Thursday to accommodate the schedules of additional witnesses.  There’s really no indication which way the arbitrators will land, but it’s certainly an uphill battle for Elliott.... Eric Decker returned to practice on Tuesday after battling an ankle injury. Now with the Titans, he’s expected to form a formidable red zone duo with quarterback Marcus Mariota, but he’s going to need to be healthy to provide a return on investment.... The Chicago Tribune’s Brad Biggs is speculating that Victor Cruz doesn’t have a very good chance at making the Bears’ roster, despite the season-ending injury to Cam Meredith.  Right now it looks like Kendall Wright will be the primary receiver in this offense with Kevin White being the “high-upside” alternative (ceiling limited by the quarterback situation)... After Jamaal Charles’ strong performance on Saturday night, he’s now going to make the 53-man roster and figures to be used by the Broncos as long as he’s healthy... Vance McDonald joins an interesting situation in Pittsburgh.   After spending the last several years in low profile offenses, the Steelers should provide more opportunities for offensive production as long as he can beat out fellow tight end Jesse James... Eric Ebron has been dealing with a hamstring injury for the entire month of August, but it looks like he’s finally on track to be ready for Week 1.  Ebron returned to practice on Monday, but was limited to drills on the side.... Second-year wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell has been cleared to practice for the Patriots.  Speaking on radio station WEEI in Boston, Tom Brady spoke to the hosts about losing Julian Edelman and where the team can go from here.  Danny Amendola seems like the logical replacement for the Patriots given his ability to play in the slot.  Here’s what Brady had to say: “Obviously with Danny, I’ve had (trust) with Danny.  Danny has been such a great player for us."... As expected, Devonta Freeman has officially been cleared from concussion protocol and Freeman is locked and loaded to be the primary running back in Atlanta... Talking to reporters, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said “We've only had (Josh Doctson) a year and he hasn't done a lot for us”.  It’s not an untrue statement, but you can definitely sense the frustration from Washington’s coach. Michael Waldo


     

    Fantasy Football Draft Day Dominance!

    Last season, our software ranked DeMarco Murray 2 rounds ahead of his consensus ADP. Rookie RB Jordan Howard, 6 rounds ahead of his ADP, despite not having a starting job when the season started. Top-20 wide receivers  Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate  2+ rounds ahead of their ADP. Tight Ends Jordan Reed and Travis Kelce, 1 round ahead of their ADP. These are just a few examples of the many calls we made in 2016. (click here for a complete look back at our 2016 projections and our 15+ year track record).

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    8/30/2017

    TEN WR Rishard Matthews Forever undervalued in fantasy circles, Matthews posted 945 yards on 108 targets, with 9 TDs in 2016. His subpar 60% completion rate was subsidized by his 14.5 YPR rate and 1.98 fantasy points per target. He also registered and unheralded 10 Quality Starts with 7 coming in his last 8 games. His elite 46% Red Zone success rate is consistent with his production in Miami. Additionally he was highly productive for Mariota in critical 3rd down situations with a 18.4 YPR and 55 fantasy points on 34 targets. No reason we should not expect more than the 108 targets he received last season, and he'll come at a discount. His current 12th round ADP, makes him a Fantistics recommended bargain.

    Fantistics ranks him as the 35th best WR in a PPR format. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    Updates in today's Fantistics Draft Advisory Software:

    • ADP Updates from Yahoo, ESPN, CBS, NFFC, MFL

    • IDP Player Projection Updates

    • Updated Depth Charts

     

     

     

    A Look at ADP 2017 by Kyle Elfrink

    This week ... Draft boards get knee-capped by preseason Week 3 injuries, the Browns go young – again – at QB, and Detroit locks up their franchise face.

    ·         On the Hunt for Kareem

    For more than a month, every mention of KC Chiefs’ runner, Spencer Ware (pre-injury ADP #63), was quickly followed by a mention of his back-up, Kareem Hunt (surging ADP #58).  There were two reasons for that ... first, no one thinks that Ware is truly a difference-maker, and two, Hunt’s arrival in the starting lineup was considered imminent by mid-season.

    Now, ‘imminent,’ has become ‘now.’  Ware went down last Friday at Seattle with a season-ending knee injury and Andy Reid has already called for Hunt to be his bellcow in the Chiefs’ offense.  The 3rd-round selection from Toledo posted some big-time marks over his final two seasons in the MAC and brings a solid rushing-receiving combination to the table.  In terms of the critics, many have pointed out that he’s a good, but rarely great, runner who doesn’t have much breakaway speed to speak of.  Of course, you don’t need the speed to succeed ... you need the carries and the touches.  Hunt should now get those.

    Charcandrick West (ADP #285) is now the presumed back-up, but he’s not necessarily a hand-cuff because he’s a very ordinary asset and he would likely have to cede work to ... wait for it ... the still-playing C.J. Spiller (ADP #222)!  Spiller could still some 3rd-and-passing chances, but Hunt is going to get a major shot at the ace role.  He’s flying up draft boards, sometimes even landing in the top-25 overall.  I’m even-keeled on his chances.  I’d be totally fine with him as a low-end RB2 on my roster.  But, I feel that he will get snagged as a high-end RB2 in many, many leagues.  He has current hype in his favor, he’s young, and he’s unknown ... throw that trio of ingredients into a blender and fantasy players start slobbering.  Hunt has the usual rookie concerns – fumbles, picking up a blitz, audibles, handling the punishment, etc. – but, those are all mostly unpredictable.  Again, I’m most interested between slots 30-36, but if you really want him, you’re going to have to go into the 25-30 range.

    ·         Fantasy Football ... Where ‘Nobodies’ Quickly Become ‘Somebodies’

    Julian Edelman (pre-injury ADP #58) used to be a total non-factor in the world of fantasy football.  He had fewer than 70 catches in his first four seasons in the NFL ... and, then exploded for over 100 in 2013!  What changed?  Wes Welker left for Denver.

    Now, it’s Edelman playing the role of the ‘somebody’ who is moving on, thanks to a torn ACL suffered last weekend.  The ‘nobody’ who is moving in is veteran, Danny Amedola (surging ADP #207).  Amendola is a near-replica of Edelman and even holds a season of 85 receptions way back in 2010.  Since that bust-loose season with St. Louis, though, he’s been on the sidelines dealing with a variety of injuries and concussions.  And, that’s the crux.  He’s a definite PPR-producer when you know that he’s going to play.  But, any honest assessment of Amendola means you should only be hoping for something like 10 games.  That means you should still be drafting him as a guy with a 60-catch target.  The low-end is under 30 catches.  The high-end (however unlikely it is because of a lack of health) is near-90.  That’s a massive delta and makes him a very high-risk/high-reward selection.  Outside the first 10 rounds, he’s a fine gamble.  But, you’re going to see him going inside the first eight rounds as we get closer and closer to the start of the season.  That’s a price level much too high for me.

    Of course, the system in New England and the collection of Patriot weapons also weakens some of the interest.  Bill Belichick has rarely encounter a missing part and responded by peppering the same guy, over and over, week after week.  It’s just not his style.  A variety of WRs, TEs, and RBs will all pick up the slack in Edelman’s absence.  And, if you’re thinking that Chris Hogan (ADP #124) gets the push, you need to understand that he handles an entirely different route tree and role in the New England offense.  He’s a big-time burner and deep-threat.  He’s, effectively, the polar opposite of what Edelman does.

    ·         Bears Chasing Jets

    If you’re looking for wide receivers then the New York Jets are the worst place to go.  Well, they were the easy answer, that is.  Now, the Chicago Bears are giving New York a run for their money.

    The Bears’ top option out wide, Cameron Meredith (pre-injury ADP #77), became the third victim of a traumatic, season-ending, knee injury.  Meredith was already in a slide because of Chicago’s unstable QB situation, but now he’s completely off boards. His injury has us considering a bust, a shrinking vet, and total mystery shots.

    Kevin White (ADP #157) is the first guy to discuss.  The former top-10 pick has rarely been on the field in two seasons because of constant injuries.  He’s still been battling this year and is truly on the edge of being called a total bust.  He can only be drafted as a WR4 because you just cannot expect or predict him for double-digit games.  He’s shown no inkling of that.

    Kendall Wright (ADP #307) is also in the building.  You might remember him from his 90/1,000 season of 2013 when with Tennessee.  He’s a little more than a possession receiver (never more than six scores in a single year over five total years) and has missed 2, 6, and 5 games, over the past three years.  He could be a WR6 dart throw in the right league.

    After that, it’s a lot of wait-and-see.  There are guys who might emerge, but I wouldn’t be adding them off the waiver wire until they string together a few productive showings.

    ·         Welcome to the Lineup, QB #27!

    The Cleveland Browns re-started in 1999.  In the 18 seasons’ since, they’ve employed 26 different gunslingers under center.  You can now make it 27 as they enter year #19.

    Coming out of the third preseason game, Head Coach Hue Jackson announced that the Week 1 start would go to rookie, DeShone Kizer (ADP #330).  The Notre Dame alum didn’t necessarily run away with the gig in the preseason, but he was called the best of a very underwhelming group of contestants in Browns’ camp. 

    First off, barring injury, Kizer should get a few months to show what he’s made of.  He has the measureables you’d want and features a rocket of an arm.  Unfortunately, he often puts too much trust in that arm and makes throws that he shouldn’t.  NFL defenses will also find that they can lure Kizer into mistakes because he often looks in on the first option and stays there. 

    It’s tempting to look at the example of Dak Prescott (ADP #92) and say that Kizer could do the same, but a huge difference lies in what is/was around these two youngsters.  Frankly, Prescott just landed in the perfect situation and, well, Cleveland ... is ... not ... so ... perfect.

    In a single-starting QB league, Kizer holds very, very little attraction.  In a double-starting QB league, you could maybe take a shot on him as your 3rd guy if your league gobbles up most everyone on draft day.  I would slot him in the 24-28 range among all NFL QBs.

    ·         You Can Now Call Him $tafford

    You’re new ‘best-paid NFL player’ is now a guy who has been in three playoff games in eight seasons ... and, who has lost all three.  Hey, it’s great work if you can get it!

    Matthew Stafford (ADP #105) broke the bank to the tune of $90-million guaranteed as part of a five-year extension with Detroit.  Pay is matter of timing, team need, and position.  Stafford found a perfect alignment of all three.  We’ve just reached a point in the NFL where when you find a good-to-great quarterback, you have to keep him.  Detroit can’t be blamed at all for the signing ... even when giving it to a field general who is 7 games under-.500 for his career (109 games).

    As for the fantasy game ... Stafford is the same this year as every other year.  He’s someone who is a solid bet on the health front (he hasn’t missed a game since ’10).  He’s a near-certainty for over-4,200 yards with 25-30 TDs.  That’s low-end QB1 reliability.  If you’re in a 12-team league, he’s someone that you can absolutely get away with as your starting QB.  I’d back him up with another guy in the top-18 at the position because there will be 4-5 games where the matchup just doesn’t do him favors.  Getting him anywhere outside the top-100 is a win on most fronts.

    Looking for more ADP data? Fantistics Draft Advisory Software includes 6 ADP sources (updated weekly), that you can choose from to closely match your league sentiment.

    You can hear Kyle each weeknight on ‘The SiriusXM Fantasy Drive’ from 8-10 ET, Sirius 210, XM 87.


    8/29/2017

    NYJ RB Bilal Powell dominated in the 2nd half of '16 with 509 rushing yards on 101 carries (5.0 YPC), and 33 receptions for 229 yards. Overall he posted an elite 1.21 Fantasy Points Per Attempt last season. The Jets staff understands that he's ascending, but can he carry the full load as Forte role declines? Last season in what are considered money situations, Powell was #1 in the league among qualified backs with 7.7 Yards per Carry in 3rd down situations. He'll face a B rated Schedule of Strength, with a C+ rated Oline in front of him this season. Currently ADP mid 7th round ADP, Fantistics believes he'll return a 5th round value. This despite the expectations that the Jets will struggle on offense.

    A big hit could be coming to a Bengals defense that looks prime for good season. Vontaze Burfict is facing a five game suspension for a hit on FB Anthony Sherman earlier in the preseason. While this hit wasn’t anywhere near as bad as the other ones on Burfict’s resume, this is the one that doomed him as the NFL is making a big push for cleaning up hits on defenseless receivers even inside the “five yards from scrimmage” area..... There’s a rumor flying around now that Jeremy McNichols could be facing his last shot at making the Bucs roster this week in Washington. Dirk Koetter has said that he is playing fine on special team, but on offense he’s falling behind as camp runs along. Last week against the Browns, Koetter said he got one carry and lost a yard before missing a blocking assignment that led to a sack which got him pulled.... The undrafted rookie Matt Breida out of Georgia Southern not only has been informed he’s made the team, but it’s sounding like he’s going to have a “major” role in the offense and that could be as high as being the backup to Carlos Hyde. He isn’t exactly coming out of nowhere though as he ran a 4.4 40 at his pro day and had up to 17 offers to sign him as an UDFA..... Mike Glennon is reportedly still the starter for the Bears as it appears that he’s not in danger of being “Russell Wilson’d” anytime soon. Mitchell Trubisky has shown some flashes this preseason but not enough to over take Glennon as the starter. I don’t think either are really good options for fantasy as their top returning wideout from last year Cam Meredith just tore his ACL and Alshon Jeffery as we all know departed for Philly this off season. You can avoid the QB spot here all together.... After missing the last two games with a concussion Devonta Freeman returned to practice Monday. While I haven’t seen it officially reported my guess is there’s a less than zero chance he suits up for the Falcons final preseason game but it does sounds like he’ll be ready for week one.whch is good for owners..... The Kareem Hunt hype trains is going to go off the rails now that Spencer Ware has been ruled out for the whole season with a knee injury. Hunt has been extremely impressive and now deserves to slot in the draft queue in the same area as the rest of the rookie backs around the 4th-5th round..... Josh McCown won the Jets starting job over less than fierce competition from Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenburg. This really doesn’t move the needle on him or on any one else on the team at all....  It’s been confirmed that Cam Merideth did in fact tear his ACL and he’s been ruled out for the entire season. This puts even more pressure on Kevin White to finally live up to his draft slot and newcomer to the team Markus Weaton may get even more looks, but he didn’t exactly perform that well in Pittsburgh when he had chances.....  Zeke Elliot’s appeal process officially starts on Tuesday so we should know by the end of the week at the latest if he’s going to see his current six game suspension be reduced at all. His draft stock has taken an obvious hit but he’s still currently coming off the board around the 3rd to 4th round...but we've seen him go in the early 2nd round in some money leagues.  Odell Beckham is still not practicing for the Giants after hurting his ankle in their last game, but the team says that he is making progress towards being out there week one. We haven’t heard anything from the team that makes it sound 100% either way on whether he’ll be out there or not, and if he does play it’ll be interesting to see how close to 100% he’s going to be....  Leonard Fournette is not going to play in the Jags final preseason game but the team is thinking he’s going to be fine for week one as he’s still dealing with his foot ailment. The injury hasn’t affected his draft stock at all as he’s still coming off the board in the 2nd or 3rd round of most drafts.... The Lions made Matt Stafford the highest paid player in the NFL late Monday night making him the highest paid player in the NFL. Stafford makes for an intriguing late round QB with his big arm and as it seems more and more leagues are waiting on the quarterback position. He’s likely to be there with your last handful of picks....  After picking off a pass against the Colts, Ryan Shazier now has an interception in five of his last six games and is absolutely the key player on the Steelers defense. If you’re looking for underappreciated players in an IDP league, Shazier was the only player in the NFL last season with three forced fumbles, 3 interceptions, and 3 sacks while not even playing a full 16 game schedule.....  Paxton Lynch is going to miss a few weeks with his hurt shoulder but that doesn’t really affect much because Trevor Siemian won the starting job anyways. Lynch still may show the upside that got him drafted in the first round in 2016, but I don’t think we’re going to get any sort of look at it any time soon.... The Bills sent linebacker Reggie Ragland to the Chiefs on Monday just one year after drafting the LB in the second round. Ragland missed all of 2016 with a torn ACL and wasn’t viewed as a good fit for the new coaching regime’s system, which is why the Bills reportedly had him on the block for most of the summer.....  Josh Sperry

    8/28/2017

    Joe Mixon – Cincinatti Bengals (Round 2, Pick 16 – Oklahoma)

    College: Joe Mixon is one of the quickest running backs in this draft class, posting an impressive 4.43 40-yard dash at the combine.  Unfortunately, like several of his draftmates, Mixon does have a checkered past when it comes with the law.  Mixon had a successful career at Oklahoma when he wasn't suspended for punching a female student or picking a fight with a parking lot attendant. In fact, Mixon is arguably the most talented member of his running back class, but no team was willing to invest their first round pick in a player who assaulted a female.  Thanks to his multiple suspensions, Mixon isn't as decorated as his talent would suggest.  Mixon got All Big-12, but he failed to win anything else, like All-American.

    Redraft Outlook: From a fantasy perspective, there were a lot more favorable landing spots than in Cincinatti.  From plenty of competition (Hill and Bernard are still there) to a brutally bad offensive line, Mixon has plenty of hurdles in the short-term.  Early indications from camp have been extremely favorable, however, and given Mixon's skills at both running the ball and receiving out of the backfield, he will have an opportunity to steal the starting job out of camp.

    Dynasty Outlook: From a longer-term view, Mixon might just be the back with the highest upside in this draft class.  With excellent footwork, elusive moves, and the ability to break tackles, he's arguably the most well-rounded back that we're going to see this season.  He has future star written all over him, as long as he can stay out of trouble and stay on the field.  In dynasty leagues, you're also taking the gamble that the Bengals will address their offensive line conundrum, which will pay dividends, if it comes to fruition.  If I'm picking in a dynasty league today, it's Mixon I take and not Fournette or Cook. - MWaldo

    Fantistics ranks him as the 19th best RB in a PPR format. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    The Chicago Bears received some bad news Sunday as WR Cameron Meredith looks to have torn both the ACL and MCL in his left knee against Tennessee.  The exact injury has not been confirmed yet but the team is resigned to the idea that he will miss all of the 2017 season.  This was really a bad break for Meredith who was a surprise fantasy factor last year and with the departure of Alshon Jeffery to Philadelphia this offseason, Meredith was moving up draft boards and figured to make an even bigger impact.  Mike Glennon had the best game of his preseason as he threw 11 of 18 for 134 yards, one TD and zero INTs against the Titans.  Number one draft pick Mitchell Trubisky came in relief and played well as he threw 10 of 15 for 128 yards, one TD and zero INT while carrying once for nine yards.  Glennon looks to be etched in as starter but Trubisky has shown enough this preseason to get the call if Glennon falters.  Neither has significant fantasy value, particularly with a razor thin WR crew.  Tennessee WR Taywan Taylor bruised his calf against Chicago and left the game but the team doesn’t think it will be an injury that lingers.  Cincinnati RB Jeremy Hill injured his ankle against Washington Sunday and left the game not to return.  The injury isn’t considered serious but keep an eye on it.  Hill still has some mileage left in the tank but the presence of Joe Mixon who has looked strong this preseason, certainly decreases Hill’s value.  Washington TE Jordan Reed made his preseason debut against Cincinnati and caught two passes for 12 yards.  Reed has been dealing with a toe injury but looked fine in brief action.  We all know the drill with Reed, he can be a TE1 when healthy but he seems to get hurt every year which kills his value in most draft formats.  Buffalo WR Andre Holmes didn’t practice Sunday due to neck spasms which is the last thing the Bills need with Jordan Matthews out indefinitely with his chest injury and now Tyrod Taylor out with a concussion.  You get the feeling that Buffalo is doomed this year?  Will they call it the Curse of Sammy?  Cleveland pulled a minor surprise by announcing that rookie QB DeShone Kizer will be its starting QB for the season opener and not the embattled Brock Osweiler, whose stock has fallen from probable starter in Denver to probable starter in Houston to benchwarmer in Cleveland.  Cleveland head coach Hue Jackson feels that Kizer has the upside that Osweiler doesn’t, but it remains to be seen how much fantasy value Kizer will have because most owners are staying away right now.  After looking like his season might be over against Philadelphia, QB Bryce Petty got good news as an MRI taken on his injured knee showed a Grade 1 MCL sprain and not an ACL tear like originally feared.  Josh McCown is still penciled in as Jets starter but Petty has played well enough to be top backup.  Due to Julian Edelman’s season ending knee injury, he will most likely be replaced in the offense by a combination of Chris Hogan and Danny Amendola.  Hogan came up big in the playoffs last year while Amendola has been a reliable pass catcher in NE for years.  The fantasy value for both guys has gone up as either one makes a nice WR4 in most league formats.  Amendola can be injury prone so Hogan would have more value of the two. Jason Singh

    Rookie Watch Sunday Games:

    CHI QB Mitch Trubisky - 10/15 128 1 TD

    CHI RB Tarik Cohen - 1/5 rush
    CIN RB Joe Mixon
    - 8/31 rush 1/6 rec
    WAS RB Samaje Perine 5/5 rush
    SF RB Joe Williams
    7/16 rush
    MIN RB Davin Cook
    5/17 rush 1/-5 rec

    CIN WR John Ross
    1/8 rush
    MIN WR Rodney Adams
    3/35 rec 1TD

     


    8/27/2017

    Draft Value RB Ameer Abdullah – Mid 7th round ADP - Josh Sperry

    Positives: In the 7th round there’s a trio of running backs going and they are Eddie Lacy, Adrian Peterson, and the still unknown Ameer Abdullah. Abdullah missed all of last season with an injury and Theo Riddick filled in his place with a solid season catching the football, but was not a successful runner by any means. Abdullah provides a huge upside but running the football and catching the ball through the air.  In just two games last season he ran for 101 yards at 5.1 YPC and had 57 receiving yards with one score.

    Negatives: Missing basically an entire season with a foot injury isn’t exactly what you want out of a running back, and that doesn’t change for Abdullah.  He also is on the smaller side of things stature wise, so don’t expect him to get any sort of goal line looks, and especially so because the team does love Zach Zenner a lot as the bruiser back.

    Final Verdict: I like Abdullah’s upside a lot if he’s healthy and him currently going in the 7th round makes it work the gamble at that point. Riddick didn’t do anything to prove he’s an every down back last season so if Abdullah is healthy it’s likely that the team leans on him to start the season.

    Fantistics ranks him as the 23rd best RB  in a PPR league. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    There were nine preseason games on Saturday night. Just like Friday night, injuries dominated the headlines on Saturday, with a couple of big Friday injuries becoming more clear on Saturday...Julian Edelman is done for the season in what is expected to be a torn ACL. Look for Chris Hogan and Danny Amendola to replace him...Spencer Ware has torn ligaments in his knee and could miss 2-8 weeks. Kareem Hunt takes over and can be considered a RB2...DeMaryius Thomas left Saturday’s game with a groin injury. Monitor the situation before drafting him, as he’s going in the mid-third round...Tyrod Taylor left Saturday’s game with a concussion and is in the protocol. Losing time will hurt him as he tries to get used to his new receivers. Nate Peteman took over for Taylor...Bryce Petty threw for 250 yards and three touchdowns but injured his knee late in the game. He’s making a case to be considered part of the Jets QB competition...Justin Tucker was thought to possibly have a concussion after making a tackle on Saturday, but cleared the protocol quickly and should be fine...Adam Humphries injured a hip on Saturday night. He is projected as the WR#3 in Tampa Bay, but is not fantasy relevant unless Mike Evans or DeSean Jackson were to miss any time...Vontae Davis re-injured his groin, an injury he dealt with in 2016. He’s a lone bright spot on the Colts defense and a weak defense would be much weaker without him...Jamaal Charles made his Broncos debut with 27 rushing yards and 15 receiving yards. He’s a late round flier with upside...John Brown caught two passes, both of which went for touchdowns. If he is able to stay healthy, he could emerge as the deep threat in Arizona, with Larry Fitzgerald taking everything underneath. Skeeter Robinson


    8/26/2017

    RB Spencer Ware KC suffered a knee injury on Friday, which required him to be carted off the field. Though we didn’t get more details throughout the game except that he was ruled out, the injury is thought to be a PCL injury and not an ACL. The obvious beneficiary of any injury in this situation is rookie RB Kareem Hunt, who was already knocking on the door behind Ware. As our Michael Waldo pointed out in his Rookie RB review,  Kareem Hunt was one of the finest among all FBS backs last season.  Over the course of his career, he racked up 4,945 rushing yards and an eye-popping 44 touchdowns while playing in the Mid-American Football Conference.  Oh and did we mention that he only fumbled the ball one time in his entire collegiate career?  Hunt was devalued heading into the draft like most small, mid-major football players, but the talent is real.  As his career went on, Hunt become more involved in the passing game and ended his career as a quality, well-rounded back who can run both inside and outside and serve as an adequate 3rd down back. This morning Fantistics has reranked him as the 16th best RB  in a PPR league. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    We had quite a newsworthy night on Friday despite having just two games going on.  The biggest news was a knee injury suffered by Julian Edelman, which is feared to be a torn ACL.  Tom Brady’s most trustworthy option the past few years, Edelman will have an MRI over the weekend to learn his fate.  The injury boosts Chris Hogan, Danny Amendola and the pass-catching running backs in New England.  Hogan racked up 70 yards and 2 touchdowns in Friday’s game after Edelman exited.  Keep an eye on this situation as it moves forward.  In the New England backfield, we saw Mike Gillislee’s first action as he carried 8 times for 38 yards and a touchdown.  Still undervalued, Gillislee is likely to see a slight boost in the ranks now that he’s showing to be healthy.  In the other game, Spencer Ware also went down with a knee injury, though Coach Andy Reid called it a sprained knee.  While Ware is thought to be dealing with a PCL injury and not an ACL injury, we can’t assume anything until he has his MRI on Saturday.  Any missed time for Ware would lead to a major boost for rookie Kareem Hunt.  The Kansas City passing attack was weak on Friday with Tyreek Hill catching just 1-of-4 passes for 11 yards.  His preseason hasn’t been exciting, but Hill is still a dangerous weapon waiting to show his stuff.  His slow month continues to keep him undervalued as drafts are underway, despite the preseason hype.   In Seattle, Thomas Rawls and C.J. Prosise were both absent on Friday, which gave Eddie Lacy and rookie Chris Carson more work.  Lacy totaled 21 yards on 4 carries, while Carson racked up 90 total yards on 10 touches in the game.  It’s not inconceivable that Carson makes a fantasy impact this year, though he’s part of a crowded backfield.  Rawls is currently listed atop the depth chart, but if possible this is a situation worth avoiding.  In other news, the Texans continue to deal with injuries in their backfield.  Alfred Blue is dealing with a high ankle sprain, while rookie D’Onta Foreman is working to recover from a strained groin.  Though Lamar Miller has hold of the lead role, it’s looking more than likely that Foreman is the next man up before Blue.  .Jeremy McGoldrick


    8/25/2017

    Last night, rookie RB Christian McCaffrey came back to earth with a only 21 yards on 7 carries. After lighting it up last week with some extended runs (primarily end arounds), he struggled going up the middle in week 3. We know there's been a lot of buzz about him the last few weeks, but this is a system where the blueprint is known. McCaffrey is going to be the lighting, and Jonathan Stewart, the thunder. Sound familiar? Were fantasy owners ever heavily rewarded during the DeAngelo Williams/Jonathan Stewart era? Are you willing to pay a current ADP mid 3rd round price? We are not recommending it.  Fantistics ranks him as the 20th best RB  in a PPR league. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler was impressive last night. He finished 5-for-8 with 105 yards and one touchdown. He connected with DeVante Parker for a 72-yard completion. Jay Ajayi performed well, finishing with 53 yards and two touchdowns. Carson Wentz had a big game for Philadelphia.   He completed 6-of-10 of his passes for 129 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Wentz connected with Torrey Smith for a 50-yard touchdown and also found Alshon Jeffery for a 15-yard score.  Cam Newton made his preseason debut. He competed both of the passes he threw and one went for a touchdown. Kelvin Benjamin was on the receiving end of the nine-yard touchdown. Chad Henne got the start against the Panthers on Thursday night. He finished 8-of-14 for 73 yards. Blake Bortles came in off the bench and finished 12-of-16 for 125 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Titans rookie wide receiver Corey Davis won’t play this week. He will be re-evaluated after Sunday’s preseason game. This news comes just days after head coach Mike Mularkey said that Davis should play in the preseason. Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett won’t play in Friday’s preseason game. He was activated from the PUP list three weeks ago. Lockett hasn’t played at all this preseason as he recovers from a broken leg. Seahawks running backs C.J Prosise and Thomas Rawls will both miss this week’s game. That’ll give Eddie Lacy another chance to seize the starting role. Latavius Murray will make his Vikings debut against the 49ers this Sunday. Murray started on the PUP list because of an ankle injury. He is expected to be the number two back behind rookie Dalvin Cook. Chicago running back Tarik Cohen could be Jordan Howard’s primary backup according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Bills coach Sean McDermott says Jordan Matthews “is making great progress.” Matthews did take part in individual drills for the first time since injuring his chest. It sounds like he should be good to go for Week 1. James Rapien

    Do you play in a Yahoo League? Our Yahoo Module connects our software to your Yahoo Draft room making it effortless to draft that winning team.

     


    8/24/2017

    WR Tyreek Hill has emerged as one of the top playmakers in the 2nd half of 2016. He is a duel threat on the ground and through the air, combining for 600+ total yards in the 2nd half. Solid 73% completion rate, as a short field receiver. Will see much more than the 41% of snaps he saw last season, and could be a big fantasy contributor if he can stay healthy (not a big guy). Fantistics is projecting 1050 total yards and 9 TDs from him this season. Current 5.5 Round ADP with late 3rd round upside, Fantistics ranks him as the 17th WR  in a conventional 12 man PPR league. Play in a different type of league? Fantistics has the most robust scoring options found anywhere. Click here to download a free demo version.

    The Jaguars will start quarterback Chad Henne, not Blake Bortles in the team’s third preseason game.  This is significant because this week of preseason is typically viewed as a dress rehearsal for Week 1.  Henne hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2014....The Browns are also making a change at quarterback and will start rookie DeShone Kizer in their upcoming exhibition....The news surrounding Odell Beckham Jr continues to be mixed, but there have been reports that while he did avoid major injury (i.e. ACL tear) and a high ankle sprain, this injury to his ankle still has the potential of keeping him out two weeks.  Depending on his availability, as well as Brandon Marshall, Sterling Shepard could play a huge role on this offense early in the season..Le’Veon Bell tweeted out that he plans to return to the team on September 1st, just in time to miss the team’s final pre-season contest....Danny Woodhead will miss the team’s third preseason game...Bears QB Mitch Trubisky has been getting work with the first team, but Mike Glennon will start Week 3 of the preseason, which also suggests he’ll start Week 1 of the regular season, as well....Chargers WR Mike Williams has been running sprints and is reportedly a little ahead of schedule on an October return....TE Jordan Reed was activated off the PUP list over the weekend and practiced in his first training camp activities on Wednesday.   He will play in this week’s game...WR Jordan Matthews was back working on individual drills and seems to be on pace for a return in Week 1...If you’re thinking about drafting Ben Roethlisberger, you may have to think again.  Big Ben historically has severe home/road splits and this season the Steelers play seven of their first ten games on the road.  The other three games at home are against MIN, JAC and CIN.  Tread carefully....Michael Waldo

    Matthews,Jordan - BUF/WR: The newly acquired Jordan Matthews was spotted doing individual drills with the team on Wednesday, making a Week 1 return probable. Matthews suffered a fracture in his sternum a little over a week ago and his value has plummeted since the news broke. If he ends up not missing time, he could wind up a sneaky good value on draft day for your fantasy team as a wide receiver #1 whose drafted near the tail end of most drafts. On the downside, Taylor has struggled to throw the ball over the middle, which is precisely where Jordan Matthews will run most of his routes out of the slot. Matthews saw a bit of regression to his completion percentage last season, likely due to the quarterback transition, seeing it fall from 66% in 2015 down to 62% in 2016. His YPRE have historically hovered between 11 and 12, which isn’t uncommon for a slot receiver, but leaves fantasy owners yearning for more in standard leagues.

    FYIRoethlisberger,Ben - PIT/QB: Everybody references Ben Roethlisberger’s massive home/road splits, but few actually talk about how his schedule plays out. 5 of the team’s first 7 games and 7 of the first 10 are all on the road. Oh, and those three games at home? They’re against Minnesota, Jacksonville and Cincinatti. Sure, he’s home against the Packers in the first round of the fantasy playoffs and home against the Ravens for the fantasy championship week, but your team will be so far behind in the standings after the first 10 weeks of the year that you may not even sniff the playoffs. Let someone else draft him this year.

    Player InjuryWilliams,Mike - LAC/WR: Speaking to the media on Wednesday, head coach Anthony Lynn told reporters that the Chargers’ top draft selection, Mike Williams, is ahead of schedule in his recovery from a back injury and has been running sprints. It sounds like the team is sticking with the plan to have him return in October, but it is positive news to hear that he remains on track or a little ahead of the curve. There’s a lot of mouths to feed in this offense that lost no one from a successful offensive attack a season ago. Entering mid-season, it’s going to be tough for Williams to garner a large market share of targets. He remains a much better dynasty option than season long.

    FYIBortles,Blake - JAX/QB: The changing of the guard looks to be happening in Jacksonville as Chad Henne, not Blake Bortles, will start the team’s third preseason contest. Since the third preseason game is often viewed as a test run for Week 1, it looks like Henne will officially be Jacksonville’s starting quarterback to open the year. Bortles has failed to post a completion rate above 59% in any of his seasons in the league while also averaging at least one interception per game. While he doesn’t possess the upside of Bortles, Henne may actually help boost the value of the wide receivers in this offense simply in the form of more consistent results. Nonetheless, Chad Henne hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2014, so there’s likely going to be some rust to shake off.

    Pumphrey,Donnel - PHI/RB: Despite gaining momentum as a potential sleeper, Donnel Pumphrey is now being viewed as a candidate to be inactive, should be even make the 53-man roster. The Philadelphia running back situation is officially a mess. With Legarrette Blount looking terrible in the first two pre-season games (including multiple reports that his roster spot is in danger) and injury issues with Wendell Smallwood, Pumphrey was being looked at as a potential starting running back. Nonetheless, head coach Doug Pederson has thrown his support behind Blount and has said he will be a big part of the offense. In other words, he’s probably man 1st and 2nd downs along with all the red zone opportunities. Smallwood will likely see 3rd down and passing situations with Pumphrey, predictably, riding the bench.

    Reed,Jordan - WAS/TE: Jordan Reed was activated off the PUP list over the weekend, but the Redskins didn’t have a practice until Wednesday. Reed made his return to the practice field and participated in light drills. The tight end has been dealing with a toe injury, but he’s apparently healthy enough to be active for the team’s final two pre-season contests. Reed has never played in a full season since entering the league and was limited to 12 games last year due to a dislocated shoulder and concussion related symptoms. The concussion was his fifth since entering college and there was initial concern over Reed’s ability to come back from the injury. Pair that with a myriad of soft tissue injuries over his 4 years in the NFL and you’re talking out a player with a mid-3rd round ADP who, on average, misses 4.5 games per year. That might be okay in the 8th round or 11th round, but not with your third pick. No thanks.

    Player InjuryBooker,Devontae - DEN/RB: According to Denver beatwriter Troy Renck on Twitter, Booker is hoping to return to the team by Week 3 while recovering from a wrist injury. The Broncos running back situation has been one of the most talked about topics of the pre-season because no one actually knows what’s going on. The health of all three Broncos running backs is in doubt, although Anderson has been playing in the pre-season and has looked effective. Once Jamaal Charles and Booker get healthy, this backfield could get crowded. Booker will need to improve upon his efficiency when he does see time this year, although his yards after contact metric was actually quite strong in 2016 despite an average 3.5 YPC mark. In fact, 69% of his yards were gained after initial defensive contact, which ranks among the league’s highest marks. The Broncos offensive line ranks out at just a C in the Fantistics draft software, so his ability to break tackles in certainly going to come in handle once he gets healthy.

    Trubisky,Mitch - CHI/QB: The #FreeMitch campaign continues to gain momentum in Chicago as the rookie took reps with the first team offense in practice on Wednesday. Nonetheless, Mike Glennon has already been named the starter for the Week 3 dress rehearsal game and barring an injury, Trubisky will most likely be the backup at least in Week 1. Glennon has been terrible this pre-season, but the Bears coaching staff has stuck to their plans to develop their rookie slowly. Once the regular season starts, however, coaching plans often get tested and usually losing can bring change sooner rather than later.

    FYIWoodhead,Danny - BAL/RB: Danny Woodhead is not likely going to play in the third preseason game this weekend for the Ravens after he has missed practice every day this week with a hamstring injury. A PPR star when on the field, Woodhead has dealt with injury after injury and he’s now entering his age-32 season. Expectations must be held in check when dealing with an aging player that has played in just 21 games over the last 3 seasons. He’ll certainly play a prominent role during the first 4 weeks of the season while Kenneth Dixon serves his suspension, and would be a worthy complement to Ezekiel Elliot, but his current ADP at the beginning of the 4th round is far too risky. I’d much rather have Dalvin Cook, Mark Ingram, or Bilal Powell, all of whom are being drafted after him.

    IdeaColeman,Brandon - NOS/WR: - The departure of Brandin Cooks has the fantasy community abuzz this off-season. The groupthink in the industry has Michael Thomas emerging into a fantasy star with Willie Snead and Ted Ginn Jr chipping in. To offer a slightly different view, let me throw out a name that’s receiving practically no coverage this pre-season despite Drew Brees going on record this summer saying, “There's really not a guy who I have more trust in than Brandon Coleman, honestly. I've played with him now for a long time, and I feel like he's a guy that can play every position. He can play X, he can play Z, and he can play inside. So his versatility in this offense is really good, he's a very smart player and he's been a guy who's just done whatever we needed him to do over the last few years.” Critics will point to the preseason games and say he hasn’t stood out. I’d rebut that Drew Brees hasn’t played in either game. Coleman is still going to open the season as the team’s third wide receiver, but there’s definite upside in an offense that tends to get spread around. Look for him to continue making improvements around the red zone, a place he can thrive given his large frame and big hands. In his second season last year, Coleman improved his completion rate from 61% in 2015 to 68% in 2016. Currently going in the 25th round or undrafted in most formats, he’s a definite sleeper that can be grabbed off the waiver wire.

    FYIHurns,Allen - JAX/WR: At one time, Allen Hurns' stock was pointing upwards this preseason after Marquise Lee continued to miss time with a high ankle sprain. Unfortunately, the success of rookie Dede Westbrook has cast shadows of doubt regarding Hurns' role with the team. With no targets in the team's second preseason game and first without Lee, there is a definite chance that Hurns will not have a significant role on this team. Further lowering his value is the poor play of quarterback Blake Bortles. Two years removed from an excellent season in 2015, Hurns should not be drafted in fantasy drafts right now.

    FYIOliver,Branden - LAC/RB: - If you're sitting in your draft room and all of the starting running backs have been selection, Branden Oliver is an excellent option as a running back depth selection. Starter Melvin Gordon has a long history of soft tissue injuries and has failed to play a full season in either season of his career. Oliver has looked good this pre-season and has been successful when given the opportunity throughout his career. After missing all of 2016 with an Achilles injury, he's back and will serve as Gordon's primary backup in 2017. If Gordon were to go down, Oliver would be in line for a huge role for the Chargers. His career 3.6 YPC is nothing special, but he does possess solid pass-catching ability, something that Philip Rivers loves to use in his offensive attack to complement his receivers who stretch the field.

    FYIBell,Le'Veon - PIT/RB: Le'Veon Bell is reportedly planning to report to training camp on September 1st, ending his preseason-long contract hold out. The Steelers slapped a franchise tag on their star running back this offseason, but the two side have been unable to come to terms on a long-term contract. In his absence, rookie James Conner has looked more than capable and remains the best handcuff to grab for the Pittsburgh backfield. Forunately for Bell owners, it doesn't look like Bell is in any danger of missing regular season action, so it's safe to continue drafting Bell as one of the first two picks off the board.

    FYIBeckham Jr,Odell - NYG/WR: More details continue to emerge regarding Odell Beckham's ankle injury. While Tuesday's MRI confirmed the injury was not a high ankle sprain (which is great news because high ankle sprains tend to linger much longer), ESPN beat writer Jordan Raanan hears that it's possible Beckham could miss one to two weeks of the regular season. If that's the case, Backham can not be drafted as a top-5 fantasy receiver and it puts owners who have a late first-round pick in a difficult situation. While it's always possible he returns early, assuming he misses two games, that's still three games out of the thirteen regular season matchups that you'll be without a first round pick. Assuming he doesn't miss two guys and comes back early, my fear will also be that his risk for re-aggravation will be high and/or it could turn into a situation where the injury lingers. More news will continue to come out, but as it stands right now, my conservative approach doesn't involve taking Beckham before round 2.

    Kizer,Deshone - CLE/QB: After two lackluster preseason games started by Brock Osweiler, the Browns are reportedly turning to rookie DeShone Kizer to start the dress rehearsal for Week 1 in their third pre-season contest this week according to ESPN. Head coach Hue Jackson had high praise for Kizer saying "He made a lot of progress by investing the necessary time to learn our offense, working hard to improve on his fundamentals while also effectively moving the offense in preseason games". Kizer has certainly outplayed his competition so far, but his next true test will be how he succeeds against opposing teams' top defensive units (as opposed to the second stringers). From an actual fantasy perspective, Kizer's ceiling is going to be limited by a few different factors. First and foremost, rookie quarterbacks rarely find success on teams that lack an above average defense and/or an above average offensive line. Luckily the Browns should have an improved offensive line, but their defense remains a big disadvantage. The logic behind that is simple and it all revolves around the concept of time. Playing with a lead is infinitely easier than playing from behind and it creates more opportunities to get creative with the playmaking. When a rookie is always playing from behind, he tends to have less time on the sidelines resting and observing and he's asked to throw the ball more frequently and often, that ends in mental mistakes because he's forcing it to his receivers rather than letting the play develop organically. Similarly, a good offensive line buys more time for the quarterback to sit and let the play develop. Pass rush forces mistakes and rookies tend to make more of them than a seasoned veteran. Luckily, Kizer has shown the ability to scramble in the pre-season, so he may help himself stay out of trouble in that sense, but the overall ceiling in 2017 remains quite low without legit receiving options.

     

    8/22/2017

    Undervalued RB Carlos Hyde – beginning of 5th round ADP

    Positives: Carlos Hyde was quietly very productive on a really bad 49ers teams. He averaged 4.6 yards per carry behind that offensive line. He’s capable receiver out of the backfield as well snagging 27 passes on 33 targets for 163 yards and 3 touchdowns. Hyde should receive the bulk of the touches out of the Niners backfield with a pair of rookies (Joe Williams, Matt Brieda) as the only two with real competition if he were to go down with an injury. Fantistics is projecting 1150 rush yards, 196 receiving yards and 9 TDs.

    Sources close to Le’Veon Bell are saying the running back is likely to return to the team shortly before labor day, giving him about two weeks with the team before the season. This is no real surprise as the RB definitely wasn’t going to extend this into the regular season and start missing actual games....  Apparently Jamaal Charles is on the bubble for the Broncos of making the roster as this week is going to be his opportunity to impress coaches enough to make the team... Trevor Siemian was named the starter for week one at QB for the Broncos, beating out the first rounder from last season in Paxton Lynch. Neither provides any sort of fantasy value for certain but maybe Lynch gives you that lotto ticket kind of upside. Siemian provides some value potentially as a mid level QB number 2 in a 2 QB league, somewhere around the 18-20 overall range.... Leonard Fournette isn’t going to play in the Jags week three preseason game after dealing with the foot injury he’s been battling. I doubt we end up seeing him at all for the rest of the preseason as the team is likely going to be very careful with this May’s #4 overall pick. Right now Fournette’s ADP is at the tail end of the second and with it being a foot injury, I think I’m taking Todd Gurley (2.11 ADP) and MAYBE Lamar Miller (3.02 ADP) over him... John Brown returned to practice on Monday as he’s been dealing with a quad injury as of late. Brown dealt with a head injury last season that really held him back from becoming the WR it looked like he was becoming in 2015. Over seven games in the second half of last season, Brown caught all of 11 passes for 167 yards and one touchdown.... Eric Ebron is dealing with a hamstring injury and that’s unfortunate as I like Ebron as a sleeper TE target this season. Last year he became a very consistent and valuable target for Matt Stafford catching 72% of the passes thrown to him but he didn’t provide much in the redzone, catching just 28% of the passes thrown to him there... Isaiah Crowell won’t play against the Giants this week as he is working through a hamstring strain that he suffered last Thursday. Crowell could be a nice value in the third round of drafts as the offensive line in Cleveland is VASTLY improved and with Duke Johnson sliding to slot wideout the competition for touches in the backfield has dwindled.... Devonta Freeman may not play in week three of the preseason and in my opinion we shouldn’t see him again until the first week of the regular season. A talent like Freeman doesn’t necessarily need the preseason work desperately and the Falcons just locked him up to make him the highest paid RB in football...  James Conner showed against the Falcons that he is without question the second best back on the Steelers and is going to be the handcuff you want to own in the Steelers backfield. Conner rushed for just under 100 yards on 20 carries against mostly Falcon players that won’t see much time but you saw him use great vision to make some cut backs to gain more yardage... Kareem Hunt is getting a lot of love across the industry in KC and he’s all but locked up the number two RB spot for the Chiefs behind Spencer Ware. The Chiefs traded up to get Hunt back in May so they absolutely love him and Ware also struggled mightily down the stretch. Ware is going to get a lot of the work from the get go because while he did fade down the stretch. He did have a solid 4.3 yards per carry over the course of the season.... In the decision we’ve all been on pins and needles for, it sounds like Josh McCown is going to be the starter for the Jets!!! If you were thinking we couldn’t get any QB news that was more mediocre than Trevor Siemian starting, well here you go. McCown isn’t fantasy relevant, at all. He’s never really been anything above average and there’s a glaring lack of talent in NY at his disposal. Just don’t do it, unless you’re in a AFC East only league.... Zay Jones is set up, possibly the best of maybe any rookie, for immediate success now that Anquan Boldin has re-retired from the Bills. Right now the only person who could be another highly thought of option would Jordan Matthews and he’s currently playing through a cracked sternum and has had injury issues in the past... Cooper Kupp is already gaining some chemistry with QB Jared Goff and could end up being a solid PPR receiver this year. In his last game against Oakland, Kupp snagged six pass for 70 yards and a touchdown. He’s reportedly locked down the Rams slot receiver role and with Sammy Watkins and some combo of Tavon Austin and Robert Woods on the outside, he should get a lot of room to work underneath.... My goodness! Was danger avoided in New York Monday night as Odell Beckham Jr was hit low and then jogged off the field before going to knee in the tunnel? It looked like, at first, that Beckham may have suffered a knee injury. However the Giants came out quickly and said that he suffered a sprained ankle and went into concussion protocol...but did pass that immediately. We’ve definitely seen the last of Odell for the preseason but it looks like he’ll be okay for week one.... Josh Sperry


    8/21/2017

    Rookie Running Backs steal the show in Week 2: WAS RB Samaje Perine looked better Saturday night than in week 1. He was decisive with his runs and ended the night with 45 rushing yards on 8 carries, w/ 1 reception for 29 yards. Perine has been called out for his lack of blocking on pass plays, but we are hearing that he has improved on that front during the practice week. Rob Kelley is starting to look like a place holder in Washington, Perine is one of the most elusive RBs in this year's rookie class. As we mentioned yesterday KC RB Kareem Hunt had a productive night against the Bengals, rushing eight times for 40 yards and catching three passes for 23 yards. Hunt didn’t get much action in the first preseason game, only getting one attempt and one reception, but he got the start in week 2 against the Bengals first team defense. It wouldn’t be surprising to see him overtake Spencer Ware at some point this season. CAR RB Christian McCaffrey was extremely productive, running for 33 yards on 3 runs (1 TD) and gaining 39 yards on 2 receptions. McCaffrey looked explosive gaining the edge several times against the Titans first team defense. His mid 3rd round ADP is getting tighter. IND RB Marlon Mack looked elusive on Saturday Night, gaining 45 yards on 5 carries, and 2 receptions for 14 yards. Mack looks like the future there, but we must consider that his production came against the Cowboys second team defense in the 3rd quarter. We'll see if the Colts elevate let him go against the Steelers starting defense in week 3. HOU RB D'Onta Foreman dazzled in his week 2 performance. He's got homerun ability, and has already posted two of Houston's biggest preseason plays with a 41 yard run in week 1, and a 63 yard reception in week 2. It's becoming clear that Lamar Miller is not going to get the same volume in 2017, however before we throw him under the bus, let's consider that Foreman's activity has come in the 2nd half of games against 2nd and 3rd string defenses. Intriguing yes, but not sold just yet. Da Bears, 5'6" Tarik Cohen received the start in week 2, and ran like a Tesla Model X P100D, against the Cardinals first string defense. Cohen got the start after Jordan Howard, did not make the trip, due to an eye poke incident in Friday's walk through. Cohen gained 77 yards on 11 carries. Howard isn't going anywhere, but Cohen has emerged as a possible handcuff in deeper leagues. In Pittsburgh, rookie RB James Conner got the call in the 2nd Quarter, and looked like a rookie gaining minimal yards on his carries...however he exploded in the 4th quarter finishing the night with 98 yards on 20 carries. Again not against the first team defense. The Bengals Joe Mixon had the most disappointing week 2, only gaining 16 yards on his 6 carries. Mixon started the game against the Chiefs, and we're going to keep a close eye on his week 3 matchup against the Redskins. No reason to panic because of a bad game. - Anthony A. Perri

    In other Fantasy Relevant News: TEN rookie WR Corey Davis continues to miss time with a hamstring injury, and he might not be ready next week either. There is talk that LeGarrette Blount may not make the roster cut.  He's looked complacent in the first 2 preseason games and it seems that this may be a motivating call out as we head into preseason week 3. Tread carefully if you are drafting this week. After signing with the Bills just a few weeks ago, Anquan Boldin has decided to retire.  We really like what we saw from rookie WR Zay Jones in week 2, and this will shift some additional targets his way.

    Subscribers can find all of these updates and ranking shifts in today's player projections update. If you are new to the Draft Advisory Software, from the top menu, click on the WEB UPDATE icon, enter your access codes, and follow through to download the latest player projections.

     


    8/20/2017

    Hunt,Kareem - KCC/RB: Hunt had a productive night against the Bengals on Saturday, rushing eight times for 40 yards and catching three passes for 23 yards. Hunt didn’t get much action in the first preseason game, only getting one attempt and one reception. Seeing him used in game two more, when Spencer Ware only had two snaps, is a promising sign that the Chiefs will plan on using Hunt this year. Hunt is worth a pick at his current ADP in the 10th round, as it wouldn’t be surprising to see him overtake Spencer Ware at some point this season.  Fantistics Draft Advisory is currently projecting 860 rushing and 240 yards w/ 6 TDs.  We recommend him as a top 30 draft day RB.

    Nine preseason games on Saturday Night means a lot of players to recap...Paxton Lynch struggled, only passing for 39 yards on 9 completions. It looks like Trevor Siemian is close to taking the job in Denver...Derek Carr threw for 100 yards and a two TD with an interception. He’s going in the mid-tier of QB1s...Jared Goff threw for 158 yards and a score against the Raiders. The addition of Watkins and emergence of Kupp could vault Goff into a viable QB2...Christian Hackenberg struggled against the Lions, only passing for 14 yards in about a half of work. He doesn’t appear ready to be Week one starter...Cam Newton didn’t play but will start throwing in practice this week and may play in the third preseason game against Jacksonville...Rob Gronkowski played his first preseason game in five years, a good sign that he is fully healthy for 2017...Darren McFadden looked good until a fumble in his last snap on the night. He’s an RB2 while Elliott is out but still can’t be drafted as anything more than an RB4...Tarik Cohen had 7 carries for 77 yards. He looks to be playing himself into a primary backup for Jordan Howard...Derrick Henry scored twice and caught three passes. A viable handcuff as long as you don’t draft him much before the 9th round...Marlon Mack had five carries for 45 yards, looking explosive in those runs. With Frank Gore being 34, Mack has a chance at some playing time if he can beat Robert Turbin out for the #2 RB...Christian McCaffrey had another impressive outing, getting 72 yards and a touchdown on five touches. He’s a great RB2 in PPR leagues...Rex Burkhead rushed for 20 yards, but had three receptions for 50 yards and a score. He looks to be involved, but hard to know how much, considering how much the Patriots interchange their running backs...Kareem Hunt dominated the running back production for the Chiefs, getting 63 total yards. After a quiet week one, Hunt showed that he will be involved in the Chiefs running game this season...Bilal Powell played a week after missing a preseason game due to a sore neck. He’s in position to be the lead back over Matt Forte and is a nice 7th round pick in PPR...Bruce Ellington caught 4 passes for 93 yards against the Patriots. With injuries to Braxton Miller and Will Fuller, Ellington’s performance could give him more opportunities in the short term...Cooper Kupp was Goff’s favorite target, catching six passes for 70 yards and a score. The Rams may have a hard time keeping him off the field, even when Tavon Austin comes back...TJ Jones suffered a hamstring injury against the Jets. While he doesn’t have any fantasy value, it could increase the value of rookie Kenny Golladay, who is competing with Jones for the WR3 spot in Detroit...Mike Lombardi of The Ringer suggests that Phillip Dorsett is on the trading block. With Chester Rogers getting first team snaps in the slot, the time for Dorsett in Indianapolis looks to be nearing an end.   - Skeeter Robinson  @skeeterrobinson

    Player InjuryJones,TJ - DET/WR: According to Michael Rothstein of ESPN, Jones injured his hamstring in the second quarter of Saturday night’s game against the Jets. While Jones isn’t on the fantasy radar, he was listed on the Detroit Lions depth chart as the #3 WR. If Jones has to miss any time with this hamstring injury, it would be the chance rookie Kenny Golladay would need to supplant Jones.

    FYIGronkowski,Rob - NEP/TE: For the first time in five years, Rob Gronkowski played in a preseason game on Saturday night. Gronk only played two series and did not have a catch. After an injury marred 2016, seeing Gronkowski on the field was a positive step forward for him and the Patriots. Going in the second round, Gronk is clearly the top tight end in fantasy. His injury risk makes it tough for me to draft, but if he plays 16 games, he’s a first round pick. Big IF though.

    Kupp,Cooper - LAR/WR: Kupp continues to impress in his rookie season. On Saturday night against the Raiders, Kupp caught six passes for 70 yards and a touchdown. WIth consecutive good performances in preseason games and an impressive training camp, he’s going to make it hard for Sean McVey to keep him off the field when Tavon Austin returns from injury. He’s not draftable yet in except in deep leagues, but he’s definitely someone you need to keep an eye on and be ready to get off the waiver wire if he gets regular snaps in the regular season.

    Ellington,Bruce - HOU/WR: Ellington caught all four of his passes for 93 yards on Saturday night against the Patriots. Quite a night for Ellington, who started training camp with the 49ers, was released, signed with the Jets for all of 24 hours before being released from New York. With Will Fuller and Braxton Miller battling injuries, and Jaelen Strong not doing much with his opportunity, Ellington has a chance to stick with the Texans and may see some chances as long as Fuller and Miller are out.

    Dorsett,Phillip - IND/WR: According to Mike Lombardi of The Ringer, the Colts are willing to field offers on Dorsett, and wouldn’t need much in return. Dorsett has only had 71 catches for about 750 yards and three touchdowns in his first two seasons, and has seem to lost the slot receiver spot to Chester Rogers. Quite the fall from grace for the former first-round pick from Miami. Dorsett should not be drafted in any format until we know his future.

    Cohen,Tarik - CHI/RB: Cohen looked quite impressive Saturday night in Arizona, rushing for 77 yards on 11 carries. He was breaking tackles, making sharp cuts, and getting good yardage after contact. Cohen isn’t going to take the starting job away from Jordan Howard, but is putting himself in position to be the backup running back or third down back with Benny Cunningham. He’s someone to keep in mind if Howard were to miss anytime this season with an injury.

    FYIPowell,Bilal - NYJ/RB: Powell was able to play in Saturday night’s preseason game at Detroit after missing the first one with a sore neck. Powell rushed nine times for 32 yards, while adding two catches for 14 yards. He may have been the lone bright spot for the Jets on a night where they only scored six points. Powell should be the lead Jets back over Matt Forte. His current ADP of 7.08 seems a bit off as I’ve seen him go in the 6th round or early 7th round in drafts. He makes for a nice low-end RB2 or high-end RB3 in PPR leagues

    Mack,Marlon - IND/RB: Mack is in a battle with Robert Turbin for the #2 RB job in Indianapolis and impressed on Saturday night against the Cowboys. Mack only had five rushes but had 45 yards on those five attempts, while also catching two passes for 14 yards. Michael Waldo has called Mack his sleeper of the year, due to his ability to have explosive plays, which Mack showed on Saturday night. Frank Gore is 34 and will slow at some point. Mack is a deep league, late round selection.

    Hunt,Kareem - KCC/RB: Hunt had a productive night against the Bengals on Saturday, rushing eight times for 40 yards and catching three passes for 23 yards. Hunt didn’t get much action in the first preseason game, only getting one attempt and one reception. Seeing him used in game two more, when Spencer Ware only had two snaps, is a promising sign that the Chiefs will plan on using Hunt this year. Hunt is worth a pick at his current ADP in the 10th round, as it wouldn’t be surprising to see him overtake Spencer Ware at some point this season.

    McCaffrey,Christian - CAR/RB: McCaffrey continues to show explosiveness on the field, rushing three times for 33 yards and a touchdown, while catching two passes for 39 yards. No one for Carolina got many touches against the Titans but no one had the production that McCaffrey did either. McCaffrey may be going in the mid-third round right now but his ADP will be rising with these performances and is a great RB2 in drafts.

    FYIHenry,Derrick - TEN/RB: The numbers may not have looked impressive: 16 carries for 36 yards. However, Henry did have a 17 yard run and scored twice in Saturday’s game against the Panthers. He added three catches for 17 yards and had better runs as the game went on. The primary handcuff to DeMarco Murray, Henry is showing everyone that he can be productive if given the chance. He should be able to improve on his 490 yards; just don’t overdraft him in the 6th or 7th round. His 9th round ADP is fair, though I would prefer him a round later.

    Burkhead,Rex - NEP/RB: With Mike Gillislee battling an injury, Burkhead took advantage of his opportunity on Saturday night. He only rushed for 20 yards on seven carries, but showed some versatility in the passing game, catching three passes for 50 yards and a touchdown. Burkhead is a late pick in deeper leagues right now, and while this performance was impressive, it’s hard to believe he will get this many regular opportunities each week once the season starts.

    McFadden,Darren - DAL/RB: McFadden looked good in his two series against the Colts on Saturday night, rushing the ball nine times for 59 yards. The only negative for McFadden was a fumble on his last play. McFadden certainly looks like a very capable replacement for the suspended Ezekiel Elliott. McFadden’s ADP is currently in the 11th round but expect that to rise as we get closer to the season and get a final decision on Elliott. He’s an RB2 while Elliott is out, but should be drafted as a RB4 or RB5 on your fantasy teams.

    Lynch,Paxton - DEN/QB: Lynch continued to struggle on Saturday night against the 49ers. Getting the start, Lynch was only able to complete 9 of 13 passes for 39 yards. He was better on the ground, rushing three times for 27 yards. Trevor Siemian came in and on Simien's first drive, led the Broncos on a touchdown drive. Lynch looks like he will end up being the backup quarterback for Denver, making him undraftable.

    Goff,Jared - LAR/QB: Goff showed signs Saturday night of why he was the #1 overall pick in 2016. Goff was 16 of 20 for 158 yards and a touchdown. He hit seven different receivers, including new WR Sammy Watkins. With the addition of Watkins and possible emergence of rookie WR Cooper Kupp, Goff may be able to turn into a viable fantasy QB in deep leagues. I would only draft him in 2 QB or Superflex leagues.

    FYICarr,Derek - OAK/QB: Carr had an eventful Saturday night against the Rams, completing 7 of 9 passes for 100 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception. He targeted Amari Cooper four times and Michael Crabtree only once, but that was a touchdown. He’s being drafted as a mid-to late QB 1, as the 8th QB off the board. His 28:6 TD to INT ratio last year was good and an increase in TDs and chance to get over 4000 yards makes him a viable QB after the Top 4 or 5 are off the board.

    Hackenberg,Christian - NYJ/QB: Hackenberg had a night to forget. Hackenberg only completed two passes for 14 yards, while rushing twice for 11 yards Saturday night against the Lions. The Jets had no flow on offense while Hackenberg was on the field, only amassing 43 yards in the first half. This performance will not help Hackenberg’s case to start week one for the Jets, and can be ignored in fantasy drafts.

    FYINewton,Cam - CAR/QB: Newton did not play in Saturday’s preseason game against the Titans. Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera said that the plan is for Newton to throw in practice this week and play in the third preseason game against Jacksonville. This progress is a good sign for those who are looking to draft Cam, as he is currently being drafted as a mid to late QB1.

     


    8/19/2017

    Cook,Dalvin - MIN/RB: The rookie continued to impress with 40 yards rushing on 7 carries and 10 yards on 1 reception against the Seattle defense Friday night. With Latavius Murray still on the sideline, Cook saw extensive work in the backfield in just part of the first half. While it remains to be seen how they will incorporate Murray into the mix, Cook has clearly shown he can shoulder the main duties. At this point he will probably start to get overdrafted as many forget that Murray is going to be involved out of the backfield, especially in goal-line situations. Cook is currently going anywhere from 15-20th at the RB position.  Fantistics Draft Advisory is currently projecting 870 rushing and 330 yards w/ 6 TDs.  We see him as a top 20 draft day RB.

    Seattle and Minnesota put on a nice show Friday night.  We saw a couple of impressive rookies in the game with Dalvin Cook and Chris Carson impressing.  Cook totaled 50 yards on 8 touches in the game working as the top back for Minnesota.  He continues to rise up draft boards, and while he’s primed for a big year, his price tag is going to be pretty high before most drafts get underway.  Russell Wilson enjoyed a nice night against the Vikings defense as he tossed for 206 yards and 2 touchdowns.  Wilson is coming off the board just outside the top 5 at the quarterback position.  Wilson and the Seattle offense did take a big hit in the game when starting LT George Fant was taken down with a knee injury.  He had to be casted and carted off, which likely signifies a serious injury.  In other injury news from Friday, Cam Newton will not play in the Saturday night game.  He continues to improve and throw more in practice, but he’s being held out until likely the third preseason game on Thursday against Jacksonville.  Eric Ebron also continues to sit out because of a hamstring issue.  He returned for a practice last week, but was out all week and is looking a little risky after he’s missed 8 games over the past three years.  Rookie Juju Smith-Schuster is following in Ebron’s footsteps.  He was out because of a concussion last week, returned on Monday, and is once again sidelined with a bone bruise in his shin.  Trying to get the number four receiver role in Pittsburgh, Smith-Schuster can’t afford to miss more time this preseason.  Two rookies on the opposite end from Smith-Schuster are Zay Jones and Dede Westbrook.  Jones continued to impress with 3 catches and 42 yards on Thursday night, while he also had a near touchdown called off because he couldn’t get a second foot down.  Jones continues to be a value late in drafts.  Westbrook on the other hand remains a risky draft prospect because of a crowded receiving group in Jacksonville, but he’s been blowing it up in the preseason.  After a great looking 42-yard touchdown in preseason game 1, Westbrook tallied 6 catches and 131 yards Thursday night.  He’s one to keep an eye on and is a good sleeper in dynasty drafts.  Jameis Winston is another one who’s crushing it this preseason.  He completed 21-of-29 passes for 196 yards on Thursday, and after 33 interceptions in his first two seasons, he hasn’t thrown any in 42 pass attempts this preseason.    - Jermey McGoldrick

    Top 10 Undervalued Wide Receivers for 2017


    #6 Cameron Meredith | Chicago Bears (Blended ADP 106th Overall – WR #40)

    Positives:  Thrust into the number one role out of nowhere last season, Meredith enjoyed a nice run with the Bears.  In just his second season, he recorded four games over 100 yards on his way to 888 yards on the year.  Beginning this season, he knows what is expected as he’s the unquestioned number one receiver for Chicago now.  Succeeding with a carousel of QB’s last season, Meredith gets a combo of Mike Glennon/Mitch Trubisky this season.  They will be able to load Meredith up with enough to produce strong receiver numbers on his way to 1,000 yards, 70-80 receptions and 6-8 touchdowns.

    Negatives: Meredith’s sample size is small as we saw him in a starring role for a limited time last season.  Though he recorded some huge games, he also posted some major duds, with five games under 30 yards and nine games with 4 or fewer receptions.  Those inconsistencies make him a scary option to trust each week.

    Final Say: Meredith’s lack of consistency was not on him as the Bears lacked a consistent passing game all season in 2016.  With some new offensive additions and Jordan Howard pressuring defenses, Meredith has a real shot at finishing in the top 20 at his position.  A more realistic goal would be in the top 30, but coming off the board as the 40th receiver is too far off. He remains a solid value at the current ADP. 

    Fantasy Football Draft Day Dominance!

    Last season, our software ranked DeMarco Murray 2 rounds ahead of his consensus ADP. Rookie RB Jordan Howard, 6 rounds ahead of his ADP, despite not having a starting job when the season started. Top-20 wide receivers  Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate  2+ rounds ahead of their ADP. Tight Ends Jordan Reed and Travis Kelce, 1 round ahead of their ADP. These are just a few examples of the many calls we made in 2016. (click here for a complete look back at our 2016 projections and our 15+ year track record).

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    FYISeahawks, Seattle - SEA/OL: Seahawks left tackle George Fant was carted off the field Friday night with a knee injury. This could be a big blow for a Seattle team that was a little shaky to start with on the O-line. Eddie Lacy and Thomas Rawls continue to look like challenging options this season. Fantistics barely has Lacy inside the top 30 at the position, while Rawls is about 10 spots down from there. C.J. Prosise could be the leader in this backfield this season because of his PPR threat.

    FYIWilson,Russell - SEA/QB: Though he did lose his starting LT, Wilson still looked good against the Vikings throwing for 206 yards on 13 passes along with 2 touchdowns. With Jimmy Graham and Doug Baldwin on the rise and the backfield stuffed with some big bodies, Wilson should rebound from a down season last year. He ranks as our 8th best QB option in the middle of the second week of preseason action.

    Carson,Chris - SEA/RB: While it’s Eddie Lacy and Thomas Rawls battling for the top job in the backfield, it’s the rookie who continues to impress. He totaled 44 yards on 7 touches Friday night, while also causing a fumble on kickoff coverage. A hard-playing rookie like this is someone to keep a deep eye on as both Lacy and Rawls have some flaws.

    Williams,Kasen - SEA/WR: Our unknown of the night goes to Williams, who has been making a name for himself in the preseason. The third year receiver out of Washington caught 2-of-4 targets for 28 yards and a touchdown on Friday. His catches were both impressive, one being a one-handed grab and the touchdown a fade over the defender in the end zone. While he’s got plenty of work to do to get into a regular season role, Williams doesn’t have a ton of presence in front of him with Tyler Lockett coming off injury and Paul Richardson and Jermaine Kearse less than exciting. Keep an eye on his progression the rest of the preseason.

    FYILacy,Eddie - SEA/RB: Lacy had a good start to his night Friday with a 9-yard run on his first touch of the game, but he managed just 11 more on 5 other carries, bringing him to 6 rushes for 20 yards on the night. Not a huge threat catching out of the backfield, Lacy did add a reception for 3 yards. After Seattle lost their starting LT for what looks like a while, the RB situation in Seattle remains one to avoid.

    IdeaDiggs,Stefon - MIN/WR: Diggs was targeted 5 times on Friday night, coming down with 4 catches for 65 yards. He looked good on the night and showed good chemistry with his quarterbacks. Diggs should be a PPR gold mine this season, but he’ll have to increase to a full 16 games this season after missing 3 in each of his first two years. With just 7 receiving scores in the NFL, owners shouldn’t expect to get much from him in that category, with Fantistics projecting just 5 scores.

    Cook,Dalvin - MIN/RB: The rookie continued to impress with 40 yards rushing on 7 carries and 10 yards on 1 reception against the Seattle defense Friday night. With Latavius Murray still on the sideline, Cook saw extensive work in the backfield in just part of the first half. While it remains to be seen how they will incorporate Murray into the mix, Cook has clearly shown he can shoulder the main duties. At this point he will probably start to get overdrafted as many forget that Murray is going to be involved out of the backfield, especially in goal-line situations. Cook is currently going anywhere from 15-20th at the RB position.

    IdeaWinston,Jameis - TBB/QB: Winston continued looking sharp in the preseason with a strong showing on Thursday. He connected on 21-of-29 passes for 196 yards with no interceptions. If the Bucs rushing attack can develop some consistency this season and stay healthy, Winston should have no trouble living up to his preseason expectations. He’s currently ranked as high as 5 and as low as 13, so you’ll have to play your draft, but anywhere near 10th at the position and he should easily outplay his draft spot. Fantistics is projecting 30 touchdowns and 4,500 yards.

    Smith-Schuster,Juju - PIT/WR: The rookie has had a hard time staying healthy in the preseason, as he’s currently dealing with a bone bruise in his knee. He had just returned to practice on Monday, so the continued missed time won’t help him move up the ladder. Smith-Schuster currently sits behind Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant and Eli Rogers on the depth chart as he battles for the number 4 spot. Even if he can get healthy, the rookie isn’t worthy of a redraft roster spot.

    Jones,Zay - BUF/WR: It’s starting to look like Jones could be the real leader in receiving this season for Buffalo. Though I’ve been excited about other rookie WR’s with an opportunity like this (see Tajae Sharpe 2016), Jones is making plays in the preseason and seeing plenty of action. He finished Thursday with 42 yards on 3 receptions, but nearly toe-touched a nice grab in the end zone for a score. With Tyrod Taylor averaging less than 20 touchdown passes per season the last two years, there’s a little hesitation on drafting Buffalo receivers, but with Jones going outside the top 50 at the position, he remains a strong value pick.

    FYIWest,Terrance - BAL/RB: West struggled heavily on Thursday rushing 6 times for negative 2 yards, while also fumbling the ball. The projected lead back this season along with Danny Woodhead, West is going to work his way into a timeshare with a few others if he continues these struggles. With Joe Flacco out though, this offense is going to have some issues moving the ball on the ground as teams dare Ryan Mallett and the other backups to bear them. Javorius Allen lead the team with 40 yards on 10 carries on Thursday.

    FYITaylor,Tyrod - BUF/QB: Despite some concern after Thursday’s game, the Bills appear committed to Taylor to start in week one. While Taylor has struggled in preseason so far, Coach Sean McDermott said he has “all the confidence in the world” in his quarterback. Rookie Nathan Peterman sits behind Taylor on the depth chart along with T.J. Yates. While Taylor can provide some mixed results, he is easily the most dangerous quarterback on their roster. His stock is at an all time low after the trade of Sammy Watkins, being without an injured Jordan Matthews and struggling in the preseason. He’ll be a good value add that can be a nice spot starter this season.

    Westbrook,Dede - JAX/WR: Blake Bortles was the main focus of reporting out of the Jacksonville game Thursday night because of his continued poor play, but what about the rookie? Westbrook should be in the news because of his continued positive play. On Thursday he coasted to 131 yards on 6 receptions, which followed his first preseason game where he took his only target for a 42-yard touchdown against the Patriots. Allen Robinson is the clear top option in Jacksonville, but Westbrook could outplay Allen Hurns and Marquise Lee for a chance at some targets.

    FYIPowell,Bilal - NYJ/RB: After sitting out the first preseason contest because of a neck injury, Powell will play tonight against the Lions. With Matt Forte out, Powell should play with the first team, while rookie Elijah McGuire will be the other guy to watch in the backfield. If healthy, Powell is the top Jets running back to own this season after he closed out the 2016 season with a few strong showings.

    FYINewton,Cam - CAR/QB: Newton has been ruled out for the game tonight, but he is expected to see the field in the third preseason game. There have been almost daily updates on Newton throwing more in practice every day, and it’s looking like he will be all systems go by week 1. Newton went from 13 quality starts in 2015 to just 6 last season, which could end up scaring enough people away from him to help him slip a few picks down. Newton is typically coming off the board in the 8-10 range at the position.

    FYIEbron,Eric - DET/TE: Many in the industry are calling for a breakout season from Ebron this season, but he’s been out of practice all but one day of camp. He returned last Friday, but missed this entire week because of the injury. After missing 8 games in three seasons, owners would be wise to have a backup plan ready at TE. Fantistics predicts a slight improvement over last year’s numbers, with a projected 747 yards and 4 touchdowns.
     

     


    8/18/2017

    Blount,LeGarrette Blount had a monster season in 2016 with ~1200 all purpose yards and 18 TDs. The TDs are obviously going to come down, but he's going to be the man here in 1st-2nd down, and Red Zone situations. One of the better Olines in the League (A-) and a run centric offense. Fantistics Draft Advisory is currently projecting a modest 955 yards and 11 TDs.  Currently being drafted in the Mid 8th round, there is upside.

    Jacksonville head coach Doug Marrone said Blake Bortles with have to earn the starting job. Bortles finished 8-13 for 65 yards. He nearly threw multiple interceptions, but he didn?t turn the ball over. Jay Cutler made his Miami Dolphins debut last night. He finished 3-of-6 for 24 yards. After the game he said wide receiver DeVante Parker is a ?faster Alshon.? Cutler was referring to former teammate Alshon Jeffery.  Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor struggled against the Eagles. He finished 8-of-18 for 53 yards and two interceptions. Bills coach Sean McDermott said they were going to ?evaluate everything? and didn?t say Taylor is their starting quarterback for Week 1. Cardinals wide receiver John Brown could be falling out of favor with head coach Bruce Arians. Arians sounds worried about Brown?s recovery time following a hamstring injury he suffered early in training camp. The Seahawks? starting running back job is still up for grabs. Thomas Rawls won?t play tonight because of an ankle injury. That opens the door for Eddie Lacy to get back in the hunt for the starting job. Steelers running back Le?Veon Bell plans to report before Week 1 according to Adam Schefter.  - James Rapien

    John Brown (ARI) ? Brown was one of my favorite bounce-back candidates this season before he injured his hamstring in training camp. Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians said Brown?s sickle-cell trait has slowed the healing process. Arians also said Jaron Brown is the team?s number two wide receiver. It sounds like Brown (John) has lost favor with the Cardinals. His ninth round ADP is risky given the recent turn of events.

    Player InjuryThomas Rawls (SEA) ? Rawls has been the starting running back throughout training camp, but he will miss Friday night?s game with a ?minor? ankle issue. Rawls wasn?t effective in 2016 after injuring his ankle at the end of 2015. This injury is worth monitoring.

    FYIEddie Lacy (SEA) ? Lacy clearly fell behind Rawls in the battle for the starting running back job. Friday is a big opportunity to get back in the hunt. Lacy has kept himself in good shape, but only had 71 carries last season due to injury. Can he regain his pro bowl form? Once upon a time he had back-to-back 1,000 yard rushing seasons. If Lacy has a good showing this week, he could win the starting job.

    FYILe?Veon Bell (PIT) ? Bell is my number one running back in PPR leagues. He?s healthy, in a contract season and isn?t getting dinged up in training camp like other players are. The last time Bell played 16 games was in 2014 and he had 1,361 yards rushing and 83 receptions for 854 yards. He was injured in 2015 and served a suspension last season. Bell is a stud and no one should worry about him missing a few preseason games.

    Jay Cutler (MIA) ? Cutler wasn?t shy about throwing the ball downfield in his Dolphins debut. He had a 31-yard completion to DeVante Parker called back because of a penalty. This Miami offense should be a lot more fun to watch with Cutler leading the way. Ryan Tannehill wasn?t a risk taker, but Cutler will take chances. He?s a mid-level QB2 who?s worth drafting in the later rounds.

    FYIDeVante Parker (MIA) ? Is Cutler exactly what Parker needs to become a fantasy star? He had four targets on two drives. There has been plenty of talk about Parker having a breakout season. Cutler could be just the man to help him do that. Parker finished with one reception for 16 yards, but offers plenty of upside. He is currently being drafted at the end of the 8th round. He was on the field for 78 percent of snaps last season and should see that rise in 2017.

    Tyrod Taylor (BUF) ? Taylor?s fantasy value took a hit when the Bills traded wide receiver Sammy Watkins to the Rams last week. He was under a lot of pressure last night against the Eagles. He finished 8-18 for 53 yards and two interceptions. Taylor was a nice fantasy sleeper with his rushing ability, but the departure of Watkins is worrisome. Taylor only had 437 pass attempts last season. It?s hard to imagine that number going up without a true number one wide receiver on the roster.

    FYIBlake Bortles (JAC) ? Bortles is a sneaky bounce-back candidate in 2017. He has plenty of talent around him with Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns, Marquise Lee and Leonard Fournette. With that said, he struggled mightily on Thursday night. I like his upside. He is currently being drafted in the 14th round. He threw 35 touchdowns in 2015. Yes, he struggled some last season, but his upside makes it worth using a late-round pick on him. His ADP could drop even more if he continues to struggle in the preseason. It is worth noting that Chad Henne did take some reps with the starters last night. Could Bortles? struggles get him benched? Henne doesn?t offer much fantasy value and it?s hard to imagine a scenario where he?s an upgrade from Bortles.

    FYIAllen Robinson (JAC) ? Robinson and Bortles need each other. Their success is reliant on the other one producing as well. The addition of Fournette should take some of the attention from Robinson. He is currently the 20th wide receiver being drafted at the end of the 4th round. I like his upside. If you?re in a two-quarterback league, you might consider stacking Robinson and Bortles. They both have upside and showed how great they could be in 2015.

    IdeaDoug Martin (TB) ? Martin has flashed the playmaking ability we saw from him in 2015 this preseason. He is suspended for the first three games of 2017, but is clearly the most-talented running back the Buccaneers have. He ran for 1,454 yards as a rookie in 2012 and had two down seasons due to injury in 2013-14. He bounced back in 2015 with a career season. Can he do it again after his suspension? He?s being drafted in the middle of round five. I like the value he offers. Defenses will be focused on stopping Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson. Martin should get every chance to be a RB1 when he returns from suspension.

    IdeaJoe Mixon (CIN) ? Mixon is the most-talented running back on the Bengals? roster. He?s bigger than Jeremy Hill and faster than Giovani Bernard. It?s ?when? not ?if? Mixon will lead the backfield in touches. Our Fantistics software has Mixon ranked 16th among running backs. I have him slightly higher. I?ve watched Mixon throughout Bengals training camp and expect him to be an RB1. Marvin Lewis coached Corey Dillon for one season in 2003. Outside of that, he?s never had a running back as talented as Mixon. He?s coached fantasy studs like Rudi Johnson, Cedric Benson and others. Mixon is special and worth picking at the beginning of round four.

    IdeaAdrian Peterson (NO) ? Peterson is 32-years-old, but he?s just one year removed from a 1,400 plus yard rushing season. Can he have success is New Orleans? I believe he can. We?ve said for years that Peterson is a freak of nature. Why should we not buy into him now? He was injured last season, but we?ve seen him bounce back from injury before. He has solid upside and is being drafted at the end of round four. He?s more talented than Mark Ingram and could be worth the risk. He has a solid offensive line and could give the New Orleans offense a tremendous boost if he has anything left.

     


     

    8/16/2017

    DAL RB Ezekiel Elliot had a monster rookie season with 13 Quality Starts, 5.1 YPC, and 29% Red Zone success rate, but with a petitioned 6 game suspension looming...where do you value him in 2017? Here's a look at two differing viewpoints:

    A Look at ADP 2017 by Kyle Elfrink

    This week ... All of the angles involving the Ezekiel Elliott suspension, trade winds blowing through Buffalo and Los Angeles, and what’s in store for an un-Luck-y crew of Indy receivers.

     (Note: If there are specific players or positions you would like me to discuss over the coming weeks, just let me know in the ‘Comments’ section of our facebook page.  Also, for the most part, the thoughts and opinions expressed are in regards to a players’ PPR value.  Obviously, there are many who play in Non-PPR set-up’s, but I find the system much too reliant on TDs - and TDs alone - to be as enjoyable as a point-per-reception league.)

    ·               Seven Weeks of Zeroes ... We Think

    Thirteen months after the incident in question and many months later than most anyone expected, the NFL finally came down with their ruling on Ezekiel Elliott’s (ADP #9 ... and crashing) off-the-field issues and conduct.  And, nearly all of got it wrong.

    Surprisingly, the stud runner got hammered with a 6-game suspension by Roger Goodell and crew.  But, as usual, that only gives us the first direction on a map that could go down a dozen different paths.  I’ll try and cut this up into bite-sized, manageable snippets of question and answer ...

            Is it truly a 6-game suspension? ... An appeal was quickly filed and that hearing came on Tuesday of this week.  Elliott’s squad of suit-and-tie’s says the NFL has jumped to a multitude of wrong conclusions, followed bad leads, and made their ruling in the interest of garnering good publicity.  There is always a chance that the suspension could be lowered.  How much so is anybody’s guess.  There is also the decent chance that Elliott could lose his appeal (totally or partially) and then choose to take the Tom Brady route by heading to federal court to get things settled.  As we saw with Brady, that means Elliott could actually play every game this season while a lengthy and drawn out court process plays forth.  If you’re drafting right now you should plan as if it will truly be a full six game suspension

            If we assume six missed games, then what are we truly missing out on? ... In a world where so little can be guaranteed, it is a guarantee that Elliott will net you a grand total of ZERO fantasy points for a month-and-a-half.  But, wait, there’s more!  The Cowboys have their bye in Week 6.  Thus, after the team takes their Sunday off, they will return for a Week 7 tilt ... but, with no Elliott.  So, in reality, you will see the Cowboy’s ace tailback returning in Week 8 at Washington.  For many of us that would mean Elliott would be a big help down the stretch of the fantasy regular season.  But, that ‘stretch’ is likely only a six or seven game run before your league’s playoffs begin.  Who knows if you’ll be there?  If he avoids injury ... if he avoids further off-the-field problems ... then, you’re still only guaranteed to get Elliott for under half of the season’s 16-game schedule.

            So what is Zeke’s value on draft day? ... Personally, I’m not interested.  Certain zero’s don’t play on my squads.  Even before we got the official word on the penalty, Elliott was outside my top-5 in PPR leagues.  Now, I would drop him outside the top-80.  Now, you tell me ... do you really believe there’s a league out there that doesn’t feature at least one silly Dallas backer or one silly fantasy player just looking to make some noise in the draft room??  Of course not.  There’s always one of those guys in every room.  Even though I would drop Elliott outside the top-80 overall, I’m almost certain that each and every draft between now and Week 1 will feature Elliott going in the top-50.  That’s a foolish price to pay for anyone who won’t play a game until Halloween.  Obviously, things are much different in dynasty/keeper leagues.  Decisions there are very specific to Elliott’s cost, protection rules within the league, and other available protection options on your roster.

    Counter Point on Zeke's Draft Day Value: Fantistics Anthony Perri (our player projections prognosticator) has a differing view on this situation. If you can draft a replacement level RB for the missing Zeke weeks (and most will for bye week purposes), that combination would equate to a top 5-7 running back in total Fantasy Points. Lets consider that Zeke scored 50 points more than the #3 RB last season. This would mean that you will need to draft a better quality backup/bye week RB, but for those planning a playoff run, having a combination such as David Johnson/LeVeon Bell and Zeke Elliot in playoff weeks could/would potentially be dominating.  Consider that the 7th best RB in this year's draft is going early in the 2nd round. Why not consider Zeke if he drops to you in the 3rd round?

            Who’s the Cowboy to own during his absence? ... Darren McFadden (ADP #135 ... and climbing) is the easy answer.  But, it might not be so easy.  Dallas has a pair of familiar names behind DMC and both of them could see anywhere from 2-10 touches per week.  Alfred Morris (ADP #209) should figure in for short-yardage and goal line work.  The always-disappointing Ronnie Hillman (ADP n/a) is also lurking and could get a few shots a game.  I think that without Elliott for the start of year Dallas will pile more on the plate of QB Dak Prescott (ADP #92).  His efficiency was insane a year ago, but that came on just 459 passes.  To be a true constant in the world of fantasy football, you need to be closer to 600.  Prescott now has a definitive chance to reach 550 with Elliott out.  What am I getting at?  Even if McFadden were to emerge as the de facto runner for Weeks 1-7, he won’t see as much opportunity as Elliott did a year ago.  He can absolutely succeed and be a top-25 RB for the first two months of the year.  If McFadden’s ADP were to stay outside the top-100, I’d be fine selecting him.  Unfortunately, you can bet that he gets inside the top-60 in a few places.

              Better Weather, but Not a Better Spot

    On the same day that the Elliott suspension was handed down, the NFL also provided a rare training camp trade involving big names.  The Buffalo Bills passed on another year of providing continuous Sammy Watkins (ADP #37) injury updates and sent him packing to the LA Rams.  As we all should know by now, Watkins is a very talented and very banged-up individual.  None of that changes with the move out west.

    The other thing that doesn’t change is that Watkins is still partnering with a questionable slinger.  In fact, at this point, Tyrod Taylor (ADP #135) is a doubtless upgrade over Watkins new buddy, Jared Goff (ADP #313). 

    I wouldn’t plan on Watkins handling more than a dozen games this year.  His track record would make one foolhardy to predict anything more.  If he gets those 12, he can come up with at least 75 catches.  But, those receptions will come along with boring yardage and boring TD totals.  At best, he’s a WR2 on a fantasy roster.  Don’t make him your lead guy.

    ·               More ‘Slots’ Than Vegas

    While Watkins was heading to the departure gates at Buffalo Niagara International Airport, Jordan Matthews (ADP #144) was exiting the arrival terminal.  If you speak to most fantasy players they will tell you that the Vandy product has been a let-down through three seasons.  I believe that’s unfair.  He has averaged a line of 75/890/6 in those three seasons.  That’s WR3 production.  You want to see Watkins line through three years?  How about 51/820/6?  Matthews has, of course, played 46 games to Watkins’ 37 ... but, well, that’s kind of the point!

    So, what happens next??  Matthews comes up with a chipped sternum (of all things!) just 15 minutes into his first practice with the Bills!  So, now he’s lame and questionable for the start of season.  He’s still worth drafting, but now he looks like a WR5 investment and not a WR3.

    After establishing that Matthews is worthy of your consideration, let’s also delve into the situation in Buffalo.  The Bills have Anquan Boldin (ADP #276) and rookie Zay Jones (ADP #168) to still throw passes at.  Both guys, just like Matthews, profile as good reception, low yardage, slot-heavy wide receivers.  But, hey, three slot guys is probably two too many.  Jones is now expected to take a lot of snaps out wide.  Few think he’s totally ready for job, but he can make plays (a collegiate FBS record of 158 catches last year) has a wide-open run to playing time.  Boldin is, yet again, an extremely safe pick in PPR leagues.  You can expect that both of their ADPs will start to climb in the coming weeks.  All drafts play out differently, but if I left the draft table with Jones as a WR5 or Boldin as a WR6, I’d be plenty happy.

    ·               No Luck to be Found

    Another ADP article and we still have no insight into Andrew Luck’s (ADP #56) shoulder.  The latest is that the Colts don’t have preseason expectations for their centerpiece.  Week 1 is still a big question mark, but the team claims they expect him to play at some point in September.  When you understand that he’s been babying the shoulder back to health since the end of last year and it’s still not healthy, you should hesitate to trust the Colts’ assertions.

    And, if there’s no Luck, then there’s dwindling excitement surrounding the team’s pass-catching options.  T.Y. Hilton (ADP #19), Donte Moncrief (ADP #86), Jack Doyle (ADP #122), and others continue to slip in current drafts.  When the ‘next man up’ is Scott Tolzein (ADP unnecessary), this all makes a ton of sense.  Considering the round cost of each of these players and the possible pay off as soon as their QB returns to the field (btw, I think Luck will play most of the year, but will not be a top-6 QB), each guy is still a decent target. 

    I’d be willing to take Hilton as a WR2, Moncrief as a WR5, and Doyle as a TE2.

    Looking for more ADP data? Fantistics Draft Advisory Software includes 6 ADP sources (updated weekly), that you can choose from to closely match your league sentiment.

    You can hear Kyle each weeknight on ‘The SiriusXM Fantasy Drive’ from 8-10 ET, Sirius 210, XM 87


    8/15/2017

  • ATL RB Tevin Coleman Last season Coleman was only in on 34% of the team snaps, but still managed 8 Quality Starts. Although he averaged a decent 4.4 YPC, most of his production came in the form of 11 TDs. They will continue to give him red zone looks as long as he can come close to his 24% Red Zone success rate from a season ago. Fantistics is projecting 1000+ all purpose yards/8 TDs. His late 6th round ADP is a value given the upside if he sees more playing time in 2017.

    Devonta Freeman has already been ruled out for Sunday?s game against the Steelers with concussion like symptoms. It was originally thought that Freeman was just suffering from some heat related issues (and as someone who live in Georgia it?s been miserable the past few days) but upon getting him inside with trainers the team discovered he also had some concussion symptoms as well.... Before I start, I know... We hear every year in Atlanta that the team plans to use Julio Jones more in the redzone and then year after year we get nothing for our excitement. We heard it last year and Julio amassed a whopping 11(!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) targets in the redzone last season on one of the best offenses in history and an incredible offensive coordinator who knew exactly how to scheme guys open.... Well the Buffalo Bills went trade crazy last week and one of their prime targets is now hurt as Jordan Matthews is suffering from a cracked sternum. He?s being labeled week to week right now but there?s now real timetable for his return at the moment. Matthews has been in  nice decline since his rookie season as his catch% has plummeted since that season and was down to 63% last season.... ? I swear there?s a Mike Williams update every Monday when it?s my turn to write and this Monday was no exception! Williams is looking now like he may make his debut after being supposedly being fine before being rumored to need surgery, to being good again, to then possibly missing the season. He?s being very lowly drafted this year, probably because of all the injury concerns with him and the sheer amount of weapons on the LA offense.... The bad news coming out of Jacksonville lately is that Leonard Fournette is suffering from a foot injury. Fournette dealt with some foot/ankle issues in college and apparently this issue now has been a growing problem for a while according the the Jags coaches. Fournette had a solid debut in the preseason with nine carries for 31 yards and a touchdown... John Ross appeared in action with the Bengals for the first time all training camp. He was able to go ?all-out? in the 11-on-11 drills for the first time after undergoing shoulder surgery shortly after the draft. The Bengals offense is loaded with weapons so getting Ross back on the field is better. He?s currently going as a 15th round pick and I?d expect that now that he?s back on the field we?ll see that continue to rise.... Sammy Watkins wants to be used as a big play option for the Rams offense and I?m really excited to see what Sean McVey works up for him. However, there is the fact that Jared Goff is the QB and I don?t think there?s much of an argument to say that Tyrod Taylor is a better QB than Goff. Watkins is currently going at the end of the 3rd round sandwhiched between Demaryius Thomas and Allen Robinson.... Roberto Aguayo has already been picked up by the Chicago Bears just days after being cut by the Bucs after a horrific career with them. This doesn?t come as much of a surprise as Aguayo was one of the best college kickers ever before being drafted in the second round. He missed 11 field goals last season and got off to a slow start this fall which lead to the release.... Andrew Luck is still being thought of as an unknown for week one and that will likely cause his draft value to plummeted until we find out for certain if he?s going to be active. Luck reportedly hurt the shoulder in week 3 of 2015 and has played through the issue since before finally having shoulder surgery in January... Denzel Perryman is slated to miss 6-to-8 weeks with an ankle injury that will really hurt a Chargers defense that has some upside going into this season. The Chargers are ranked as our #10 defense and they are being drafted as the next to last defense that actually has some sort of ADP in our system.... Kenny Golladay has been the talk of Lions camp thus far and has continued that success into his preseason action, catching a pair of touchdowns from Jake Ruddock this past weekend. He has a couple solid option around him for Matthew Stafford in Golden Tate, Marvin Jones, and Eric Ebron but Golladay may play so well he forces his hand..... Malcolm Mitchell is finally getting healthy and is getting more and more of an increased workload in Patriots camp. He saw a huge workload increase in the second half, notching 319 yards in his final seven games after posting around a 100 yards over his first five games. Bringing in Brandin Cooks may not necessarily help the target share in New England.... Melvin Gordon ran the ball six times for 14 yards in his first preseason action of 2017. The Chargers head coach has said that they want to lean heavily on running game which could mean big things for Gordon, but his numbers that season weren?t overwhelming. Gordon averaged a good but not great 3.9 YPC and almost all of his touchdowns were extremely short yardage..... ? Deshaun Watson is starting to get some looks with the #1s this week and that?s big news for him in terms of fantasy. The Texans offense is drooling with potential offensive weapons that are waiting for someone other than Brock Osweiler to unleash.... Jordan Reed is nearing a return to action from his toe injury. Reed, when healthy, may be the second best tight end in all of fantasy football behind Gronk. The Fantistics software has him pegged as the #4 TE in fantasy and our schedule difficulty has him as the only tight end in the top four with a difficulty better than a C at a B-.... - Josh Sperry

    Contained within our player projections software is a notes column. Here is where we point out some statistical indicators that are relevant to our 2017 projections. This morning we'll take a look at some of the Runningbacks that will be part of your 2017 draft (In no particular order):
     

    Johnson,Duke Highly productive outside of the Red Zone (74/366 4.9 YPC 53/514 rec), but he just doesn't get many Scoring Opportunities. Averaged 5.4 YPC in 3rd down situations last year. Sleeper consideration in deeper leagues.
    Johnson,David
    He's an absolute beast when the rock is in his hands. His 80 receptions from a year ago makes him a triple headed monster (Rush/Rec/TD). His 1.14 Points per Attempt and 26 Fantasy Points Per Game average makes him the undisputed #1 selection in this year's draft.
    Montgomery,Ty
    Quietly posted a huge 5.9 YPC in limited totes (77/457), while catching 79% of the balls thrown to him out of the backfield. The Packers did draft several RBs though, so his role is a bit tenuous.
    Ajayi,Ja
    y Ran extremely well in the first half (4.9 YPC), but slipped a bit in the 2nd half with 4.2 YPC and a meager 1 Quality Start in his final 9 games. Doesn't catch many passes out of the backfield either. Not a big fan given the Schedule (C), suddenly unstable QB situation, and his poor offensive line (D+).
    Rawls,Thomas Didn't run with nearly the same velocity when he came back from injury last season (3.2 YPC). He did improve in the 2nd half, which may mean we'll see an even better version of him in 2017. Still there are 2 in front of him heading into the season.


    8/13/2017

    WR Brandin Cooks NEP: In 2016, Cooks posted a 67% completion rate with outstanding 15.0 YPR, and 12.1 Yards Per Target last season in critical 3rd down situations. Highly productive in just 117 targets last year, but production came in spurts, as evidenced by his 7 quality starts. May lose some red some touches in NE, as that's Gronk and run game territory historically. Tough to crystal ball here...as we've learned before in the Belichick offense. Fantistics is projecting 125 Targets/ 1091 yards/7 TDs. His early 3rd round ADP is a risk play.

    Detroit opened its preseason with a solid victory against an injury depleted Indianapolis team, led by rookie third round draft pick WR Kenny Golladay out of Northern Illinois.  Golladay caught three passes for a team-high 53 yards and two TDs (on four targets) from fellow rookie Jake Rudock.  The impressive youngster is currently listed third on the Lions' depth chart behind Golden Tate and Marvin Jones, so even if he continues to have an awesome preseason, his ceiling is limited.  On the Colts side, several starters did not suit up including Andrew Luck but there is slight optimism regarding his status based on GM Chris Ballard saying Luck's “strength levels” are better right now than they were at any time last season.  He did couch that statement by saying Luck's availability for the season opener is still up in the air and the team's first priority is for Luck to have a long career.  Career backup Scott Tolzien looks to be the odds on starter for the team but had a nondescript outing against Detroit, throwing 2 of 5 for 24 yards, zero TDs, zero INTs and was sacked once in limited play.  Chicago was dealt some bad news Sunday when it had to place WR Rueben Randle on IR.  Randle missed the 2016 season after being cut by Philadelphia in training camp last year but figured to aid an unproven cast of WRs in Chicago.  After placing him on IR, the Bears acquired K Roberto Aguayo, the second round flameout who was just cut by Tampa Bay after getting off to a sluggish start in training camp and preseason.  The Bears already have Connor Barth under contract so either they are frustrated with him or just want to give him some competition during the preseason.  Recent Buffalo acquisition Jordan Matthews suffered a chest injury during his first practice with his new team which no doubt will please an already angry Buffalo fanbase that is fuming after trading Sammy Watkins who was drafted so highly (ahead of Odell Beckham and Mike Evans) just a few years ago.  Matthews' injury does not appear serious but he will miss some practice time.  Fantasy wise, Matthews was going nowhere in Philly following its offseason acquisitions so his value has taken a bump up to solid WR3 in most formats.   Jacksonville WR Marqise Lee injured his leg during practice Sunday and exited with an air cast on his leg which led to tons of speculation regarding his future.  ESPN's Adam Schefter then noted that the injury is actually not that serious and Lee should return sometime “soon.”  Depending on the official diagnosis, which should come Monday, WR Allen Hurns' value could increase.  Rookie RB Leonard Fournette injured his foot but the team said it is not serious. The team will manage it carefully as the preseason progresses.  GB TE Richard Rodgers returned to practice Sunday despite having a broken right ring finger.  He practiced with a splint on it as the team feels it should not impede his ability to catch or risk injuring his finger further.  In very positive news, KC TE Travis Kelce returned to practice Sunday after dealing with a left knee injury that kept him out of practice for a week.  The expectation is that he will return for action in KC's second preseason game but if he doesn't, the team is just being careful.  Teammate Patrick Mahomes appears to have the inside track on landing the backup QB job in KC after taking over second team snaps in practice Sunday.  He threw a TD pass against San Francisco last Friday and simply looked better than current backup Tyler Bray.  Expect this battle to continue for the next week or two before one emerges.  It is easy to get excited after watching Mahomes' college clips and his brief preseason success, but his fantasy value is nonexistent (except in keeper leagues) unless Alex Smith gets injured. - Jasbir Singh

    Contained within our player projections software is a notes column. Here is where we point out some statistical indicators that are relevant to our 2017 projections. This morning we'll take a look at some of the Wide Receivers that will be part of your 2017 draft (In no particular order):


    Snead,Willie Moves up as the #2 receiver in Brees led offense. Expect that we'll see a jump in his 64% snap count and 104 targets from a season ago. Production was there with 69% completion rate and 12.4 YPR and 33% Red Zone success rate. Additionally in critical 3rd down situations, he posted an 80% completion rate. Impressive.

    Moncrief,Donte Last season was a big let down with only a 54% completion rate on 10.2 YPR. Only maintained civility for his owners with the 7 TDs (60% Red Zone rate). Favorably he did register a 62% completion rate on 3rd downs. Will need to show cohesion with Luck out of the gate, which makes him a boom or bust pick.

    Lee,Marqise Lee rebounded quite well last season after being left for dead. Posted a 60% completion rate with an above average 13.5 YPR. Still in 3rd down situations he only posted a 54% completion rate.

    Adams,Davante Quietly posted 9 Quality starts and 247 PPR points last season, with 15.4 PPG and 2.04 PPR. In critical 3rd down situations he maintained a 63% completion rate, with an outstanding 18.4 YPR and 56 fantasy points. The only question is maintaining health and maintaining a similar number of targets (120+).

    Benjamin,Kelvin
    Did improve his reception rate slightly in the 2nd half with a 59% completion rate, which does offer a glimmer of hope with his 14.9 YPR. However his 3rd down reception rate of 47% is very concerning. Has big time potential, but came into OTAs out of shape (apparently he has toned down since). Has monster potential in the Red Zone, consider that he had a 35% Red Zone success rate last season despite the issues. Does he have the discipline to get in tune and dominate?

    Cooks,Brandin 67% completion rate with outstanding 15.0 YPR, and 12.1 Yards Per Target last season in critical 3rd down situations. Highly productive in just 117 targets last year, but production came in spurts, as evidenced by his 7 quality starts. May lose some red some touches in NE, as that's Gronk and run game territory historically. Tough to crystal ball here as we've learned before in the Belichick offense.

    Fantasy Football Draft Day Dominance!

    Last season, our software ranked DeMarco Murray 2 rounds ahead of his consensus ADP. Rookie RB Jordan Howard, 6 rounds ahead of his ADP, despite not having a starting job when the season started. Top-20 wide receivers  Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate  2+ rounds ahead of their ADP. Tight Ends Jordan Reed and Travis Kelce, 1 round ahead of their ADP. These are just a few examples of the many calls we made in 2016. (click here for a complete look back at our 2016 projections and our 15+ year track record).

     


    8/14/2017

    CLE/QB DeShone Kiser: Kizer had a bit of a bumpy road in his two seasons at Notre Dame, but the Browns were happy to have him still around at their pick in the 2nd round. While at times he was predicted to go in the first round, the lack of success for the Notre Dame teams he was leading certainly hurt his stock. Kizer is a big-bodied quarterback at 6'4” 233 pounds, with a big arm capable of making any throw, but he has a lot to work on to be successful in the NFL. Kizer lands in a great spot for becoming a starter. He reportedly impressed in the first week of training camp and created some excitement from Coach Hue Jackson. With just Cody Kessler and Brock Osweiler to beat out, a starting role doesn't necessarily mean Kizer will be worth much in the fantasy world however. The battle for the #1 spot will likely go into at least the middle of the preseason in Cleveland.    If he can earn the starting role, and he's trending that way, then Kizer could be used as a spot starter in leagues this season. Still, he won't be worthy of a draft pick outside of leagues starting 2 QB's. - Jeremy McGoldrick
    .

    Preseason is in full swing and we begin to have an idea on what teams are going to do. In New York, Christian Hackenberg was 18 of 25 for 127 yards. He will be given every opportunity to win the starting job for the Jets...Marcus Mariota was 2-3 for 15 yards, and rushed for six yards. He looks fully healed from a broken right leg and is a low end QB1...Ryan Tannehill was officially placed on IR, meaning his 2017 season is done...Deshone Kizer is splitting first team reps with Brock Osweiler. Kizer is trending to be starting quickly this season, though the Week 1 starting QB is still up in the air...Joe Flacco will not play in any preseason games but should be available Week 1. The Ravens can't afford to have Ryan Mallett and his interceptions starting...Drew Stanton looked impressive with his play on Saturday night, completing 11 of 15 passes for 112 yards and a TD. He looks to be leading the backup QB competition in Arizona...Darren McFadden had six carries for 28 yards and added a catch vs the Rams. He projects as a RB2 while Elliott is suspended, but should be drafted in the middle rounds...Todd Gurley didn't look good, only rushing for 2 yards on 4 carries. The addition of Sammy Watkins should help, but I still prefer Gurley as an RB2 in the third round, though his ADP is currently in the second round...Derrick Henry rushed for 29 yards on eight carries and had one catch versus the Jets. He's a top handcuff, but should not be overdrafted, as DeMarco Murray has only missed one game the past three years...Cooper Kupp looked good, catching two passes for 35 yards and recovered a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown. His role may diminish with Sammy Watkins in town, but Kupp has impressed in the preseason...Taywan Taylor had three catches for 50 yards and nearly had a score. He's made noise in Tennessee camp and could be viable if the Corey Davis injury lingers...Carlos Henderson suffered a hand injury against the Bears on Thursday night and is out for an unknown time. He was competing for a WR3 or WR4 spot in Denver, which is now on hold pending the injury...Robby Anderson caught three passes for 71 yards against the Titans. He's the number one receiver for the Jets, and while the offense isn't exciting, getting a team's #1 WR at the end of a draft is a good move...Cordarrelle Patterson had two catches against the Cardinals Saturday night, as he continues to fight for the #3 slot role in Oakland, with possible kick returning duties. If he wins the job, he will have some value, especially in leagues where you get points for return yardage...Rico Gathers caught a TD for the second straight game, as part of a 4 catch, 47 yard game. He's still #4 on the Cowboys depth chart, but with more preseason games like this, he should start rising up the depth chart...Roberto Aguayo was released by the Buccaneers after a tough rookie season and two missed kicks Friday night vs the Bengals. Nick Folk will take over the kicking duties in Tampa Bay- Skeeter Robinson  

    Player InjuryHenderson,Carlos - DEN/WR: Wide Receiver and Kick Returner Carlos Henderson suffered a thumb injury in Thursday's preseason game against the Bears, according to Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post. The rookie is having surgery and the timetable for his return is unknown at this time. He was listed on the Denver depth chart as the backup kick returner and was competing against Cody Latimer, Bennie Fowler, and Jordan Taylor for the 3rd or 4th WR spot. This injury will set him back but is someone still to keep an eye on in dynasty formats.

    Aguayo,Roberto - TBB/K: After missing an extra point and field goal in Friday night's preseason game against Cincinnati, the Buccaneers released last year's second round pick, Robert Aguayo. If you remember, Tampa Bay traded up to select Aguayo. He wasn't a strong fantasy kicker, but with him out of the picture, Nick Folk will step into the kicking role for Tampa Bay.

    Gathers,Rico - DAL/TE: Gathers caught a touchdown for the second straight preseason game Saturday night, to go along with four catches for 47 yards. He's still behind James Hanna and Geoff Swaim for the TE2 position, but with back to back games where he was productive on offense, and a position held by Jason Witten, who is in his final years, it would make sense for the Cowboys to start thinking about getting Gathers a little more time. Definitely worth keeping an eye on for deep dynasty owners.

    Patterson,Cordarrelle - OAK/WR: Patterson signed with the Raiders in the offseason, after a disappointing stay in Minnesota. The Raiders have plans to use Patterson more in the offense and he currently projects as the slot receiver for Oakland, with possible return duties. On Saturday night, he caught two of three targets for 22 yards. His explosiveness could fit in nicely with the consistency of Michael Crabtree and big play ability of Amari Cooper. Patterson is one to continue to watch through the preseason and the early season to see what his final role will be.

    Kupp,Cooper - LAR/WR: Kupp had two catches for 35 yards on Saturday night, which included a non-traditional touchdown, as he recovered a fumble in the end zone. Kupp had been starting to get drafted in deeper leagues at the end of drafts prior to the Sammy Watkins trade. He was listed as a starter on the Rams depth chart opposite of Tavon Austin and Robert Woods. We will see where he ends up after the Watkins trade but should be no worse than a WR4 for the Rams. He's definitely someone to look at in deep leagues or dynasty formats, but can be ignored in redraft for now, due to the questions surrounding this Rams offense.

    Taylor,Taywan - TEN/WR: Though the Titans offense didn't look impressive against the Jets, the lone bright spot was rookie Taywan Taylor. Taylor caught three passes for 50 yards, including a 42 yard catch that was originally thought to be a 67 yard touchdown, but brought back after review. Taylor has gotten some work with the first team in camp and has looked explosive at times. Though Tre McBride is ahead of Taylor on the depth chart, I think it's only a matter of time until Taylor takes that spot. He may be worth a flyer in deep leagues and is someone dynasty owners need to consider.

    Anderson,Robby - NYJ/WR: Anderson is presumed to be the #1 WR for the Jets after Quincy Enunwa's season ending injury. He took a good step towards that role on Saturday night, catching three passes on three targets for 71 yards, including a 53 yard reception. No one is excited about the Jets offense, but anyone who is going to be the #1 WR for a team has to be considered as a depth option or last draft pick in fantasy drafts.

    FYIHenry,Derrick - TEN/RB: Henry was not overly productive against the Jets, only rushing for 29 yards on eight carries. He did have one catch but didn't get any yards. His value is tied to the health of DeMarco Murray or if becomes the goal-line back. Murray has only missed one game the past three years, so there is limited work for Henry. His current 9th round ADP is fair, but I've heard of some drafting him in the 5th or 6th round. He may be one of the more talented handcuffs, but the lack of opportunities is what will keep his value to a 9th round ADP.

    FYIGurley,Todd - LAR/RB: Gurley had 2 yards on 4 rushes in his only action Saturday night against the Cowboys. Gurley didn't have much of a chance to do much as he was swarmed when he got the ball. Acquiring Sammy Watkins should take give Gurley some better chances as he won't always see 8-man boxes. He's going in the 2nd round in drafts right now, as owners are banking on an improved 2017. He's a safe option that I like better as a high-end RB2, but will have limited upside until Jared Goff and the offense show significant improvement.

    McFadden,Darren - DAL/RB: McFadden had six rushes for 28 yards and a catch for eight yards in Saturday's preseason game against the Rams. As the expected starter with Elliott being suspended, McFadden didn't disappoint in his limited action. He is a RB2 during the Elliott suspension, but still shouldn't be drafted as such. A mid-round pick as a handcuff to Elliott or for depth for 4-6 weeks is where you should target McFadden.

    FYIStanton,Drew - ARI/QB: Stanton shined in the first half of the Cardinals preseason game Saturday night against Raiders, completing 11 of 15 passes for 112 yards and a touchdown. Stanton appears to have the advantage over Blaine Gabbert for the backup QB in Arizona, which could see some playing time this season if 37-year old Carson Palmer struggles or is injured. Performances like Saturday night will keep Stanton in the backup role.

    FYIMariota,Marcus - TEN/QB: Mariota saw his first game action since his season-ending injury last year, completing two of three passes for 15 yards, and added a rush for six yards. He played the entire first quarter for the Titans (2 series) before getting the rest of the night off. He had ten quality starts in 2015, where he threw for 3,400 yards and 26 touchdowns, and added 350 rushing yards and two scores. He's currently going as a low-QB1 in drafts, but does have Top 6-7 upside if he can stay healthy and continue to add rushing yards.

    Kizer,Deshone - CLE/QB: After an impressive first preseason game Thursday night against the Saints, Kizer returned to practice splitting first-team reps with Brock Osweiler, according to Mary Kay Tabot of Cleveland.com. Leading up to Thursday's game, Osweiler was taking the first team reps, so it looks like Kizer continues to be prepared to start sooner than later. I wouldn't expect a decision on who the starting QB will be for the Browns much before the end of Preseason, but Kizer is the long-term option here.

    FYIHackenberg,Christian - NYJ/QB: Hackenberg completed 18 of his 25 passes for 127 yards, resulting in an average QB rating of 81.8. The second year quarterback is in competition with Josh McCown and Bryce Petty for the starting QB job. While he did nothing wrong, Hackenberg will have to impress the rest of preseason to get the job. Even if named the starter, he holds little value except in 2 QB leagues.

    FYIFlacco,Joe - BAL/QB: There may finally be some clarity with the Flacco situation, as he is expected to practice in the preseason but will not play any preseason games. The Ravens fully expect Flacco to start week 1. In his 10th year, missing the preseason games isn't a big deal for Flacco. However, the limited reps with newcomer Jeremy Maclin could hurt Maclin's value early in the season. As far as Flacco is concerned, he's a low-end QB2 in drafts.

    Tannehill,Ryan - MIA/QB: The Dolphins made it official on Saturday, placing Tannehill on season-ending IR. A tough break for those with Tannehill in MFL10s or early drafts. Jay Cutler will be the starter with Matt Moore continuing to back him up. Unless you are in dynasty league, there is no reason to hold onto Tannehill.

     


    8/12/2017

    CIN/RB Joe Mixon: The rookie had a nice night in his first action carrying 6 times for 31 yards, a 5.2 yards per carry average, while adding 11 yards on one reception. As expected, he outperformed Jeremy Hill, who posted his usual 3.7 yards per carry on his way to 26 yards on 7 carries. This backfield has been a heated topic in camp as we've gone from Mixon taking over to Hill being the starter all season, to a three way split with Gio Bernard also included. Regardless of what keeps floating around, Mixon is very likely to lead this team in yards on the ground this season.  Fantistics is projecting: 890 rush/270rec/9 TDs, 17th overall RB.

    We had an eventful day on Friday before the preseason action even got started.  The league finally ruled on Zeke Elliott, imposing a 6-game ban for violation of the league's personal conduct policy.  He is expected to appeal, but if all goes as it is currently set, we won't see Elliott on the field until week 8.  Still, there is a lot left to be decided here if he appeals, so keep an eye on this as it progresses.  If Elliott is out, it's expected that Darren McFadden will fill the major void, which vaults him up draft boards.  While Elliott's ban was huge, we also had some major trades happen Friday with Sammy Watkins being shipped out of Buffalo to play with Jared Goff in L.A. and Jordan Matthews taking his place in Philadelphia.  The Bills lost a higher caliber receiver to settle on Matthews who was already sliding down the lineup in Philly.  For Watkins, his value takes a small hit, though his value is more tied to his health each year than who is throwing him the ball. In Philadelphia, Nelson Agholor is likely to man the slot role with Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith working the outside.  Agholor has disappointed owners his first two seasons, and though he has a little potential still, he'll fail to be a consistent producer this season.  We saw just three games on Friday, but there was plenty to watch.  A few notable rookie quarterbacks participated in action, with shakier results than we saw from the top picks on Thursday.  Joshua Dobbs struggled much of the night, though he picked it up a bit near the end of his run.  He'll need more time and action to overtake Landry Jones for the backup role behind Ben Roethlisberger.  Davis Webb came in across the field with the Giants, but didn't do much better completing 50 percent of his passes for 67 yards with no interceptions.  In San Francisco, the 49ers went up against first rounder Patrick Mahomes, who played well completing 7-of-9 passes for 49 yards and a touchdown.  Alex Smith also played well, so despite a lot to look forward to from the rookie, this team still belongs to Smith.  A surprising impressive performance came from third rounder C.J. Beathard.  He completed 7-of-11 passes for 101 yards and 2 touchdowns with no interceptions.  With Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley ahead of him on the 49ers roster, if Beathard continues like this he could work into a battle for at least the number two role.  Other rookies and younger players taking the field included Juju Smith-Schuster, Paul Perkins, Joe Mixon, and Joe Williams.  Smith-Schuster caught 1-of-4 targets for 4 yards, but he added a 9-yard rush to his line.  Unfortunately he exited with a concussion, and he'll be monitored this weekend.  Perkins struggled a bit after a strong first run of the game.  He carried 5 times for 3 yards on the night, being outplayed by Orleans Darkwa, rookie Wayne Gallman and Shane Vereen.  Still, Perkins is in the lead in this backfield and he should be able to hold the starting role into the season.  In the other early game, Jameis Winston and Mike Evans looked like a dangerous combo as usual.  Evans has top receiver potential this season, while Winston is expected to be a top 10 QB option as well.  In Cincinnati, rookie Joe Mixon outplayed Jeremy Hill as he tallied 42 yards on 7 touches.  Though Hill started on the night, both saw action on the first drive.  Regardless of what I hear about Hill being the starter, I believe Mixon is going to own this backfield.  In injury news, Eric Ebron returned to practice Friday after missing 12 days.  Jonathan Williams was cleared to return to practice after suffering a hamstring injury in Thursday's game and Ryan Tannehill has decided to opt for surgery on his knee, which will sideline him for the entire season, confirming what we already expected.- Jeremy McGoldrick


     

    Fantasy Football Draft Day Dominance!

    Last season, our software ranked DeMarco Murray 2 rounds ahead of his consensus ADP. Rookie RB Jordan Howard, 6 rounds ahead of his ADP, despite not having a starting job when the season started. Top-20 wide receivers  Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate  2+ rounds ahead of their ADP. Tight Ends Jordan Reed and Travis Kelce, 1 round ahead of their ADP. These are just a few examples of the many calls we made in 2016. (click here for a complete look back at our 2016 projections and our 15+ year track record).

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    Elliott,Ezekiel - DAL/RB: If you haven't heard the news about Elliott's suspension, you've likely been asleep the past 24 hours. The league announced on Friday that Elliott will be suspended six games to start the season, unless he files an appeal, which could push things back. If he misses the first six games, Elliott would not see the field until week 8 because of a bye week in week 6. From a fantasy perspective, this will shake some things up. Elliott's ADP will surely drop a bit, though he'll still go earlier than most would expect given his situation. The first seven weeks of the season could decide a fantasy season, so this news bumps Elliott down quite a bit. Possibly a top RB pick or at worst top three, Zeke should be outside the top 10 and possibly the top 15 at the position now.

    Watkins,Sammy - LAR/WR: In a surprise move the Bills sent Watkins to the Rams for CB E.J. Gaines and a second-round pick in 2018. Because of his injury risk, Watkins remains a scary option, though his value is only hurt a bit by the trade. Jared Goff has a lot of growth to do this year, and while we haven't seen a ton of positives, Watkins is quite a talent when healthy. He'll take over the number one role for the Rams, while his former teammate in Buffalo Robert Woods moves to the second WR spot. Rookie Cooper Kupp, who was looking to have a possible fantasy role in deeper leagues loses value as a result of the addition of Watkins.

    Matthews,Jordan - BUF/WR: There were rumblings this week that Matthews was on the outs in Philadelphia as Nelson Agholor was trending up, but Coach Doug Pederson shot down rumors of a reduced role. Then the Eagles proceeded to trade the fourth year receiver on Friday to the Bills for a third-round pick in 2018 and CB Ronald Darby. For Matthews, the trade is good news as his role in Philly appeared diminished, while he should take over the number one role for the Bills.
    Bourne,Kendrick - SFO/WR: Most people have probably never heard of Bourne, but the rookie put on a nice show Friday with 4 receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown. He also added a stellar two-point conversion catch that looked like something Dez Bryant would do. Bourne is probably a long shot to make the team, but with impressions like this, he could work into something useful for San Fancisco as they lack depth at the receiver position. Coming out of four years with Eastern Washington, Bourne finished 2016 with 79 receptions for 1,201 yards and 7 touchdowns.

    Williams,Joe - SFO/RB: Carlos Hyde started the game but saw just 2 carries, while the rookie came in to lead with 60 yards rushing on 7 carries. While Hyde still seems to be in the driver's seat despite doubts, Williams is likely to carve a role out for himself with production like this.

    Tannehill,Ryan - MIA/QB: Though we've known he will be out for a while, we learned on Friday that Tannehill will indeed have knee surgery and be placed on injured reserve. Tannehill should be ready for camp next year, but for now the Dolphins will move ahead with Jay Cutler and Matt Moore.

    Evans,Mike - TBB/WR: Evans continues to look explosive heading into the 2017 season, and Friday was no different. He grabbed 4-of-7 passes for 58 yards in limited action. While he's being drafted in the top 5 at his position, Evans looks the part of our 2017 top fantasy receiver. Evans finished with 12 touchdowns last season and he has continued showing dramatic improvements in yards and receptions the past three seasons.

    Winston,Jameis - TBB/QB: Winston started and completed 9-of-13 passes for 99 yards against the Bengals on Friday. With Mike Evans and a couple of new weapons in O.J. Howard, DeSean Jackson and Chris Godwin, Winston could make a move into the top 5 this season. He'll need to avoid throwing interceptions, which has been his major flaw so far in the NFL, but I'm buying on Winston right now.

    Webb,Davis - NYG/QB: Webb completed half of his 16 passes on Friday, going 8-for-16 for 67 yards. He'll continue to battle through the preseason for a role behind Eli Manning, with Geno Smith and Josh Johnson his competition. Should Manning go down this season, Webb would likely be third in line behind Smith until he throws enough interceptions to make New York move to the rookie. Webb has no redraft value, but remains a dynasty stash with Manning on the way to his 37th birthday at the end of the season.

    Smith-Schuster,Juju - PIT/WR: The rookie was diagnosed with a concussion in Friday's game. He was targeted four times on the night, catching one pass for 4 yards. He also carried once for 9 yards on and end around. Smith-Schuster has some intrigue this season, but with Martavis Bryant back and Antonio Brown still the best receiver in the league, it'll be hard to carve out fantasy value.

    Perkins,Paul - NYG/RB: The likely starter in the New York backfield, Perkins had a forgettable start to the preseason rushing five times for 3 yards. He did take his first carry for a nice looking 7-yard pickup, but followed that by losing 4 yards. Perkins should see plenty of action in the New York backfield this season, and he can be had in the later rounds, making him a good value pick. Keep an eye on how the Giants use him and Orleans Darkwa though, as Darkwa is starting to generate a little buzz.

    Dobbs,Joshua - PIT/QB: The rookie didn't fare as well as the rookie QB's did on Thursday night. Getting the start with Ben Roethlisberger sitting out, Dobbs connected on 8-of-15 passes for 100 yards, but also threw two ugly interceptions. He picked it up as he started getting warmed up though and connected on two touchdown passes, one which was called back because of a hold. With Roethlisberger missing six games over the past two years, it's definitely possible we see the rookie on the field this season. Landry Jones will continue to battle Dobbs for second string duties as we move forward.

    Agholor,Nelson - PHI/WR: With the Jordan Matthews trade, Agholor gets a slight bump in value. In his third year, the USC product has failed to live up to expectations with just 59 catches in the NFL. He'll still be a risky play with Alshon Jeffery, Torrey Smith and Zach Ertz ahead of him in targets, but playing the slot role with a rising QB, keep your eye on Agholor.

    Williams,Jamaal - GBP/RB:
    Though he totaled just 14 yards in his debut on 4 carries, Williams remains an interesting sleeper this year as Ty Montgomery remains the main competition. While Montgomery should get the title of “starter” entering the season, we should see plenty of Williams in a dual role. Montgomery obviously carries the main value because of his receiving work as well, but Williams is going undrafted in most leagues, which makes him a nice bargain as a late round pickup.

    Williams,Jonathan - BUF/RB: Williams was hurt on Thursday night with a hamstring injury, but he was cleared to practice just one day later. Behind LeSean McCoy and boasting a meager 3.5 yards per carry average in 2016, Williams isn't going to see much love in drafts this year. However, he remains one of the guys who would benefit most as far as backups go. Buffalo is set up to lean on their backfield once again this season.

    Ebron,Eric - DET/TE: Ebron returned to practice on Friday after missing 12 days with a hamstring injury. He's ranked in the 12-15 range at the tight end position, but if he can prove healthy, Ebron could be a nice deal with a 14th round ADP. Though he played in just 13 games last season, he showed promise, finishing with 14 catches and 154 yards.

    McFadden,Darren - DAL/RB: Though owners will have to know they only get him the first six games of the season before Elliott returns, McFadden makes a huge leap after the suspension news. With Elliott now on a zero tolerance policy essentially, McFadden could even have value later in the season as well. He should jump into the top 30 among backs, with top 10 value as a starter. Before Zeke came to Dallas, McFadden posted 1,089 yards in 16 games.


    8/11/2017

    Sammy Watkins had an impressive preseason debut. He caught three-straight passes on the Bills first drive. Watkins finished with four receptions on five targets and 39 receiving yards. Buffalo quarterback Tyrod Taylor was briefly sidelined with a left leg injury, but he did return.  Taylor completed 5 of 8 passes for 46 yards. Running back Jonathan Williams played well with LeSean McCoy sideline. He ran for 39 yards on four carries and had a long run negated by a holding penalty. Rookie Dalvin Cook carried the load with the Vikings' first-team offense on Thursday night. Cook finished with 13 yards on five carries. He also hauled in four receptions for 30 yards. Samaje Perine was quiet in his NFL debut. He finished with 15 yards on six carries. Perine worked exclusively with the second string, while Robert Kelley worked with the first-team offense. It was tough sledding for Kelley, who finished with two yards on three carries. Saints running back Alvin Kamara had a productive night with Mark Ingram and Adrian Peterson resting. Kamara finished with four carries for 35 yards. He had runs of 22 and 12 yards against the Browns first-team defense. Leonard Fournette didn't get the start on Thursday night, but he produced for the Jaguars. Fournette entered the game on Jacksonville's second possession and finished with 31 yards on nine attempts. He also scored a goal line touchdown. LeGarrette Blount had a quiet debut for Philadelphia, finishing with nine yards on four attempts. Terrance West took advantage of Danny Woodhead being out of the lineup. West ran for 23 yards and a touchdown. Most believe Woodhead and West will split the carries in Baltimore. Ravens quarterback Ryan Mallett struggled against the Redskins. He competed nine of his 18 passes for 58 yards. Starter Joe Flacco remains sideline with a back injury. Packers rookie Jamaal Williams played exclusively with the second-team offense. He finished with 14 yards on four carries. Davante Adams had one drop on Thursday, but still finished with two receptions for 26 yards. Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo lit up the Jaguars defense for 235 yards and two touchdowns. Garoppolo played nearly three quarters and completed 22-of-28 pass attempts. Broncos quarterback Trevor Siemian had an efficient season debut for the Broncos. He completed 6-of-7 attempts for 51 yards.  The three-man race to be starting quarterback in Cleveland is officially underway. The Browns gave Brock Osweiler the start at quarterback and he completed 6-of-14 attempts for 42 yards. Cody Kessler finished 5-of-10 for 47 yards. Rookie DeShone Kizer finished 11-of-18 for 184 yards and one touchdown. Kizer is clearly the most talented of the three players and will start sooner-than-later...James Rapien

    Rookie Player Profile: Leonard Fournette JAC (Round 1, Pick 4  LSU)

    College: Leonard Fournette was a star while he was on the field for LSU.  After leading the SEC in all-puspose yards in his freshman season, earning all-american in his sophomore campaign and still managing to receive all-conference honors in his junior season despite playing hurt, Fournette made the decision to forgo his senior year to enter the draft.   For all the yards he was able to gain on the ground at LSU, he didn't play much of a factor in the passing attack.  This was partially due by design of the Tigers' offensive attack, but it does raise questions regarding his ability to pass protect, and consequently, his ability to handle third down situations in the NFL. 

    Redraft Outlook: One look at Leonard Fournette and it's probably not huge surprise to see why he was a 4th overall pick.  By running back standards, Fournette is huge, standing at 6' tall and weighing in at 240 pounds.  His size doesn't cause him to make any sacrifices in the speed department, however, as he clocked an impressive 4.51 40-yard dash at the combine.  He lands in a situation in Jacksonville where he'll have an opportunity to take the starting job and run away with it from Day 1.  It's been a revolving door at the position for the team since Maurice Jones-Drew retired after the 2014 season.  Fournette carries the most re-draft value in this year's rookie class for a couple different reasons.  First, from a physical standpoint, he's 100% NFL ready.  If you watch film of Fournette from his days at LSU, it's difficult to find a single clip where he doesn't break at least one tackle while running the ball.  His big upper body allows him to lower his shoulders against opposing safeties and he's even able to fend off even the toughest linebackers thanks to his trucking ability.  NFL opponents will be substantially more difficult to break through, which may be slightly concerning since Fournette's running style is very much north-south and pedal to the metal.  He's not a patient runner, so the Jaguars offensive line is going to need to develop in a hurry, if Fournette is going to find immediate success. 

    Dynasty Outlook: Fournette's biggest strength from a single-season perspective is nearly the same as his weakness from a dynasty perspective.  Fournette is a big, strong upright runner who isn't afraid to bulldoze his way into opposing defenders.  While that's great from a yards after contact stat perspective, it spells trouble from a longterm durability standpoint.  Fournette's not going to be able to run over opposing defenders as easily in the NFL as he did in college, which means he's going to need to rely on his field vision and his offensive line to create more beneficial opportunities for him to exploit.  Since he's never had to develop those skills, his overall field vision seems to just be average and he completely lacks the patience or trust in his offensive line.  If he can make those adjustments in his first year and beyond, he has the potential to be a special player for a very long time.  Many people have assigned comparisons to Adrian Peterson, but that seems a little premature.  If you have an opportunity to acquire Fournette in a dynasty format, you should obviously be thrilled, but he's also not quite a generational talent without any flaws.  .Michael Waldo

    Fanitistics Projection: 1280 Rush /275 Rec / 9 TDs

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