Sum of All Sports Report: NFL Free Agency Lift Off


NFL free agency is upon us and there are already numerous stories that are trending worldwide. Trades are still being talked about, releases are in the early stages, and contracts are being written all ahead of the Thursday unveiling. Who will go where and for how much is all that is left to sort out. Whether it be the Twitter GM’s, the passionate fans or the credible reporters, this continues to be one of the most exciting phases of the NFL offseason!

Fantasy Sports Expert and Real Sports Insider Tony Cutillo uses his expertise to answer the questions of who goes where and why. He offers his unique insight and opinion on what these moves all mean. Along with Free Agency, he gives us a wide variety of topics that will keep all the Fantasy Sports, Real Sports and Sports Entertainment Fans sparking up a debate.

 * NFL Free Agency….The legal tampering period is upon us and contracts will be signed in a few days. With all the players available, who do you think will sign the most surprising deal or offer the best story?

My money is on Adrian Peterson. At 32 years old and coming off an injury plagued year once again, he is already finding out the market isn’t what he expected. He will sign somewhere, but not for the money he was originally thought to receive.

* March Madness….Selection Sunday is coming up and championship week is in full swing. The NCAA tournament is the best contest in sports. From its unpredictability to its last second finishes, it reigns supreme in the world of sports.  While teams like Florida Gulf Coast and Iona are already in, who will be left on the bubble hoping for a miracle? Who is getting the (4) #1 seeds?

* FantasyBaseball….For those of you watching the Spring Training action have already noticed that Clayton Kershaw has been locked in. It’s not like he needed to give owners more of a reason why he should be the top pitcher selected, but he has decided to imprint it into their heads. He has only allowed 1 base runner this spring and still hasn’t given up a hit. Any questions? Do you take him #1?

* NBA…..Dirk Nowitzki adamantly silenced all the critics who labeled him as a jump shooter that avoids contact this week by becoming only the 6th player in NBA history to accumulate 30,000 points. After this achievement, his Mavs teammates and owner Mark Cuban mobbed him during a timeout. Is there any better owner in sports?

Kudos to Dirk for continuing to play stellar basketball for the better part of 19 seasons all with the same franchise.  In the days of the spoiled athlete and overpaid contracts, for a player to stay with one franchise for his entire career speaks volumes to the sacrifices made along the way.  Will this be his last year? Where does he fall on the all time list?

* WWE…The Undertaker has returned and looks to build on his match against Roman Reigns for WrestleMania 33. This was a scenario we all seen coming, especially with the way Roman kept eluding to the ring as his yard. We all know that is Taker’s line and it was just a matter of time before he appeared to take it back. With his documented hip issue, can the Undertaker still carry a match? Will this be his last WrestleMania? Now that the streak is over, does he offer the same appeal?

The Sum of All Sports Report has been running throughout the general media world and continues to be an integral part of this site. Its purpose is to utilize the various sports associations and bring them all into one specific theme. Debating and conversing the various opinions of the people continues to be the heart of sports media. Now it can all be done in one place.

Tony Cutillo has been using this report to gain traction all across the United States. From California to Colorado, his interviews, articles and weekly segments can be heard all across the media sector. He welcomes all opinions and debates. Now is your chance join in the fun!

 

Meet Tony Cutillo:

* As Heard and Seen on ESPN, NBC, Fox Sports, Vice News on HBO, Fox Business, Live from Seattle, Sun Coast Live, The Stuph File, Epoch Times, Prime Time Sports and many more!

* Fantasy Sports Expert/Writer for Phillyinfluencer.com

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* Fantasy Sports League Designing Expert with over 10+ years

* Real Sports Insider

* Creator and Reporter for fantasysportsaddiction.com

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* Youth Sports Specialist

* Social Media Strategist and Facebook Fanpage Analyzer

* Weekly Radio Guest on Many Live Sports and Lifestyle Networks

 

As always you can stop by my Facebook page (FantasySportsAddiction) or tweet me (@TCutillo23) for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly via the internet stream live atWengRadio every Monday at 4:00pm EST for a weekend sports wrap.

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Fantasy Football Analysis: If Brandin Cooks was a Philadelphia Eagle


It’s mid afternoon on the eve of the legal tampering phase of NFL Free Agency and the biggest question seems to be if Brandin Cooks will be bleeding green in 2017. Everyone who is in tune with the NFL has taken to social media to give their take on this odd, but fluid situation. We have seen players and draft picks thrown around in this supposed deal faster than a ping pong ball on a beer pong table. Whether or not it happens still hinges on the willingness for the Saints to dance with the perfect partner. There are several available with the Eagles being in the front of the line, but all with different visions. However, the situation still is in the building stages with a blueprint that still needs approval.

Brandin Cooks is a 23 year old receiver, who has been an integral part of the high powered Saint’s offense led by Drew Brees and Sean Payton.  Cooks enters the final year of his four year rookie contract and is looking to cash in on a monster payday, one he doesn’t see in his future with the Saints.  He played 10 games as a rookie, but has put up some impressive stats over the last 3 years.

2014….10 games …..70/550/3     70 targets

2015….16 games…..84/1,138/9  129 targets

2016….16 games…..78/1,173/8   117 targets

The Oregon State product finished the 2016 season with 78 receptions for 1173 yards, but it was the game by game production that could be a cause for concern. In 2015, Cooks only had 1 game where he was held to under 4 receptions and never went catchless that year. However, in 2016 he had 5 games where he produced less than 4 receptions and even tallied a game where he didn’t catch a single pass. ESPN reported afterwards that Cooks was frustrated with his role in this 49-21 blowout win over the Los Angeles Rams and the downward trend begin to unravel from there.

Sure Michael Thomas’s stellar rookie campaign was the main reason for the difference in game by game production, but to tally numerous games with low production totals is enough to throw shade to any eventual deal.  As a fantasy football owner, you constantly look at game by game production in the hopes of gaining maximum consistency for the scoreboard.  If you look at the breakdown below, you will notice the difference between years……

2015….16 games….5.2 catches, 71 yards per game….7 games of 80+ receiving yards (4 w/120+)

2016….16 games….4.8 catches, 73 yards per game….4 games of 80+ receiving yards (3 w/ 140+)

These stats are pretty similar, but you can clearly see the difference in big games versus steady production. However, they are still fantastic numbers for any receiver on your team, which makes you wonder why he wants out.

Cooks would bring  an immediate upgrade over the inept group of receivers on the Eagles roster, as well as any rookie that is available. I know John Ross is being talked about as the best comparison, but Cooks has proved his worth on this level while Ross is still a prospect. Would you rather get an established receiver for at least two seasons or gamble in the draft to get a player who may be more established one day?

I personally think the ceiling has been set on Cooks and you know what type of ROI you are receiving in return. In the eyes of receptions, he has shown what he can do. His stats will not falter much up or down and leave you with a force on the field that has to be marked. A rookie may have a higher ceiling, but may never blossom into that potential. As the twitter wars start to unfold, I still think the jealousy factor and the attitude need to be looked at strongly in this situation, especially if you are willing to part with a high draft pick. However, if Brandin comes knocking on Howie’s door with a 2nd round proposition, you shouldn’t need David Copperfield to convince you to #DoTheDeal!

As always you can stop by my Facebook page (FantasySportsAddiction) or tweet me (@TCutillo23) for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly via the internet stream live at WengRadio every Monday at 4:00pm EST for a weekend sports wrap.

Steroids in Cooperstown: Voters Begin to Back Down


The Softening Stance on Steroids in the MLB Hall of Fame continues to grow legs as players who admittedly took some sort of supplement or were connected to the PED scandal in any way are paving their way to Cooperstown. There are many opinions out there as to why, but it could simply be that Americans are changing their attitudes when pressed about MLB’s Juiced Era of Baseball.

I, for one, was always on the side of let them in since there were too many unknowns to keep them out. “Does it make them stronger? Does it help them hit the ball better? What about hand-eye coordination?” “How about the pitchers throwing the ball?” “If they both are users, doesn’t it make it an invalid argument?” I know the last one may be a stretch, but it definitely deserves some consideration.

We all remember vividly when the Baseball Writers decided to put an X over all eligibility in 2013 to deliver a clear message to the “Steroids Era.” It was a defining moment in Baseball and one that will probably never be recreated. However, here we are in 2017 and the writers are beginning to fold.

Three names synonymous with Steroid allegations – though never been proven – have been voted into the Hall of Fame. Mike Piazza, voted in last year, always carried rumors along with him and Ivan Rodriguez and Jeff Bagwell saw their achievements tarnished by the suspicions that they were users. For example, Bagwell acknowledged taking androstenedione, a dietary supplement and steroid precursor, during his career, something Mr. Piazza also admitted to. This still didn’t stop them from being selected. You all know where this argument is heading.

Now onto possibly the greatest Hitter and Pitcher of all time (I can already feel the heat coming), Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens. Yes, both were indicted on charges for their alleged steroid use, but they still gave us memories that will never be recreated. In regards to Mr. Bonds we are not talking about Sammy Sosa and I for one take great offense to anyone who lumps him into the same category. Just being an avid MLB fan gives me enough knowledge to know the two players do not even come close when we are discussing individual talents. Was he wrong, sure he was. However, how is it right for guys that have fielded these same accusations to have their names in fame, including Bud Selig, the former commissioner who decided to do nothing about this issue while it was on his watch? Why are Barry and Roger bigger than the issue itself? It looks like I may not be the only one with questions.

Both of the marquee athletes of yesterday received a majority of votes for the first time in the five years since their names appeared on the ballot. In 2013, Bonds received 36.2 percent of the vote. Last year, he received 44.3 percent, while receiving 53.8 percent in 2017. Clemens saw his numbers rise from 45.2 percent last year to 54.1 percent this year. (Numbers courtesy of Baseballreference.com)

Some believe the selections of Piazza and Selig actually led many sports writers to reconsider their stances on Steroid Era players. It very well could be, but I think it has more to do with the changeover in the voting process than anything.

Over the last several years, the demographics of the baseball writers has shifted drastically with many of its newest voting members not being an integral part of the press generated from the Steroid Era. It seems this shift was magnified 18 months ago when the Hall of Fame restructured its voting requirements to phase out older members who haven’t covered the sport regularly within the past 10 years. (Courtesy of the Washington Post) This unprecedented move wiped 200 (mainly veteran) writers right off the map. The doors were now realigned with a younger vote and the changeover is evident.

If you read some reports floating around, some feel the voting results reveal how the younger society views drug use and illegal substance abuse among modern day athletes. This very well could be true, but I think this speaks more towards ignorance than actually understanding. We all know the athletes of our favorite pastime had their obvious flaws and bouts with addiction. Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb are two names that first come to mind. Do you think if social media was born back in their time, FB Live videos and IG posts would have them in hot water too?

I think this is a very valid statement that needs to be carefully considered. We constantly look and speak on “Eras” in sports, but never look at the whole picture. Hell, if cell phones were prominent during the years of the bash brothers, we would probably have concrete evidence of dates and time when injections were taking place.

At the end of that day, the statistics of guys like Clemens and Bonds should not be forgotten. Their accolades should live on in MLB and continue to be pushed for their ticket to Cooperstown. Times have changed and people need to get on board because their moment is coming, like it or not!

***The above article expresses my opinions only. As always, I stand behind my views and am interested to hear yours. I look forward to seeing your comments…………

***As always you can stop by my FB page (FantasySportsAddcition) or Tweet me @TCutillo23 for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly via the internet stream Live at WengRadio every Monday at 4:00pm EST for a weekend sports wrap. But most importantly, you can catch me at Phillyinfluencer.com!

Fantasy: Week 6 Stars and Stiffs Report


The hits and misses keep on adding up through the first 5 weeks of the 2016 Fantasy season. We continue to have underperformers whose hope is slowly dying and overachievers whose confidence is flying high. It finally time to cut bait on the dead weight?

Remember, in most leagues there are only 7 regular season weeks left and the time to make moves is dwindling away. Fantasy Football is a “what have you done for me lately” activity and one constructed of streaks. We are high-powered place holders, with a zero investment vision for the future. In layman’s terms, tell those stiffs to take a hike!

The world of sports media can be a beautiful thing when all parties are involved and engulfed in a stern debate. As always, I look forward to your opinions and feedback. You can tweet with any questions (@TCutillo23) and leave your comments below. For my statistical hounds out there I will put last week’s stats in parentheses so you can see how I performed. Here are my picks for week 6………….

Stars for Week 6  (Last Week…5 out of 8…..62.5%)

QB: Carson Wentz (@WAS), Andrew Luck (@HOU), Russell Wilson (ATL)

RB: LeSean McCoy (SF), Giovani  Bernard (@NE), Matt Forte (@ARZ)

WR/TE: Will Fuller (IND), Brandon Marshall (@ARZ), Jeremy Maclin (@OAK)

 

Stiffs for Week 6  (Last Week….6 out of 6….100%)

QB: Ryan Tannehill (PIT)

RB: Theo Riddick (LA), Jeremy Hill (@NE)

WR/TE: Jeremy Kerley (@BUF), S. Shepard (BAL), D. Baldwin (ATL)

 

Sleepers: (Last Week…1 out of 3)

Colin Kaepernick (@BUF), Sammie Coates (@MIA), Justin Forsett (LA)

Bust Alert: (Last Week….0 out of 2)

Matt Ryan (@SEA), Ryan Matthews (@WAS)

 

Week 6 Triple Threat…….

Alex Smith (@OAK) I know Alex Smith is the king of Dink and Dunk, but this week he will polish off the rifle. There aren’t many games where the Chiefs decide to throw downfield on a consistent basis, but this week they are facing a secondary that Guerilla Glue couldn’t even hold together. This is my pick for shootout of the week and Smith will be on the winning side of it.

LeSean McCoy (SF) – Guess who’s back. Shady’s back. LeSean was thought to be dead and washed up in the eyes of Chip Kelly, but this year he is proving otherwise. LeSean showed flashes of the Shady we had come to expect, but not at a consistent level. This year he has that extra step back and the elusiveness he showed in his first years in the league is reborn. He continues to be a top Fantasy RB this year and with the rash of injuries we have witnessed, could very well finish in the top 5.

T.Y. Hilton (@HOU) – Hilton may very well be Fantasy Football’s #1 WR. He is the only player that has been targeted 10 times or more through the first 5 weeks of the season and his speed is second to none. The Colts haven’t necessarily been explosive on offense this year, but a matchup with a team that seems to be leaking oil is just another chance for T.Y. to shine.

***As always you can stop by my FB page (FantasySportsAddcition) or Tweet me @TCutillo23 for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly via the internet stream Live at WengRadio every Monday at 4:00pm EST for a weekend sports wrap. But most importantly, you can catch me here at PI!

***For Fantasy Purposes, all my articles are predicated upon a PPR based system…

NFL Week 5 Fantasy Impact


To win a fantasy championship, you need to be active on the waiver wire.  You need to know which players are truly waiver wire gems and which ones are a flash in the pan that you should pass on.  There are a few fundamental questions you should ask yourself before making moves:

  • What are my positional needs?

If you already have 6 RBs on your roster, you probably don’t need to pick up another.  Be aware of your depth.  Look at your players’ upcoming bye weeks so you know how your lineup will shake out in those crucial weeks.

  • What do I need from this player addition?

Obviously, we need that player to perform, but you need to understand if you have a short term or long term need.  If you just need a bye week replacement at QB, Brian Hoyer may be better for Week 6.  If your QB goes down for the year and need someone more steady, you may want to look at Alex Smith.

  • Do I have any dead weight?

If you have players on your roster that aren’t performing, and you don’t expect them to turn it around, then cut them.  Take a flyer on a high potential player, someone coming back from injury in a few weeks, or a backup RB in case of injury.

Here is what I see on the Waiver Wire landscape going into Week 6…

Waiver Wire – Buy or Pass

Buy

Sammie Coates – Coates is usually good for a big play or two, but has problems with drops dating back to college.  He’s a decent add on a potent Steelers passing attack, but he’s not a PPR machine.

Chris Hogan – Now that Tom Brady is back, the whole offense gets an upgrade.  He won’t have big games every week, but in that passing attack you can never count one out.

Jacquizz Rodgers – He went over 100 yards without Doug Martin active and looks to get work whenever Martin is out.  I expect Rodgers to fill Sims role as the receiving back even when Martin plays.

Jeremy Kerley – I’ve never been a Kerley fan, but he’s getting utilized in San Francisco.  Kerley (8-102-1 on 14 targets) has scored in 2 straight games and seems to have decent chemistry with Blaine Gabbert.  The only problem is the 49ers are toying with the idea of bringing Colin Kaepernick back as the starter.

James Starks – Lacy went down with an ankle injury but it’s not believed to be serious.  If you’re a Lacy owner, this should be your reminder that you need to roster Starks no matter what.  When Lacy doesn’t play, Starks always gets the full workload.

Eddie Royal – Alshon Jeffery is struggling and Royal is benefiting.  Royal’s worth a look in PPR leagues.

Tyrell Williams – I like Williams if you need a steady WR4.  He’s had at least 60 yards in 4 of 5 games and 5+ catches in 3 of 5.

Brian Hoyer – Hoyer has been great in his short stint as the starter and Cutler may not get his job back.  I don’t trust Hoyer as my starter for the year, but I like Hoyer if you need a fill-in for a week or two.

Donte Moncrief – He was supposed to be the 2nd receiver on a potent Colts offense, but suffered shoulder injury in Week 2 with the initial prognosis of 4-6 weeks.  He’s now 3 weeks in and could be nearing a return shortly.  If you’re in need at WR and he’s unowned, keep him on your radar because you won’t want to miss out on his production come Week 8 through the fantasy playoffs.

Justin Forsett / Dwayne Washington – The Detroit Lions have Theo Riddick, but they don’t really want to use him as an every down back.  You can take a flyer on Washington hoping that he comes back from injury and takes the lead RB job.  The Lions also just signed veteran Justin Forsett which is intriguing.

Quincy Enunwa – Like Tyrell Williams, he’s a steady WR4.  He’s had at least 50 yards in 4 of 5 games and is averaging nearly 8 targets per game.

Tavon Austin – Austin has big play ability, but the Rams offense is a mess.  He’s seen at least 8 targets in 4 of 5 games and chipped in 20+ yards rushing in 2 of 5.  He’s not a great option, but you could do worse to round out your bench.

Pass

Cameron Meredith – He’ll have a decent game or two, but I’m not wasting my time.  Of everyone on the pass list, he at least has a shot to be decent.

Dontrelle Inman – Week 4’s “one week wonder” fell back to earth with 1 catch in Week 5.

Adam Thielen – And for the surprise of the week, Adam Thielen (7-127-1 on 8 targets) led the Vikings in receiving with Stefon Diggs absent.  Thielen isn’t worth your time; Diggs will be back soon enough.

Oakland RBs (Excluding L. Murray) – In Latavius Murray’s absence, the workload was split and nobody stepped up.  DeAndre Washington (9-23), Jalen Richard (8-31), and Jamize Olawale (6-22-1).  There’s too much uncertainty in this backfield outside of Murray.

Week 5 – Aerial Attack

Tom Brady / Martellus Bennett – Welcome back Tom Brady!  He looked in midseason form on Sunday going 28/40 for 406 yards and 3 TDs with no picks.  Brady loved his TEs in this one as Rob Gronkowski (5-109 on 7 targets) went over 100 yards and Martellus Bennett (6-67-3 on 8 targets) scored 3 TDs.  Chris Hogan (4-114 on 5 targets) also went over 100 yards.

Ben Roethlisberger / Sammie Coates – The weather is getting colder in Pittsburgh so Big Ben pulled out his Coates in this one.  Ben was 34/47 for 380 yards with 4 TDs.  Sammie Coates (6-139-2 on 11 targets) dropped a ton of crucial passes but managed to catch 2 TDs.  He better work on his drops if he wants Roethelisberger to continue to look his way.

Derek Carr / Amari Cooper – Carr (25/40, 317 yards with 2 TDs / 1 Int) went over 300 yards against the Chargers and finally found his #1 WR for a solid game.  This was Amari Cooper’s (6-138-1 on 12 targets) best game of the year with his 1st TD and topping 100 yards for only the 2nd time.  Michael Crabtree (3-47-1 on 7 targets) also scored again.  I said last week to buy low on this guy; this week may be your last chance.

Brian Hoyer / Cameron Meredith – And just like last week, of course everyone expected this…  This time it was Cameron Meredith (9-130-1 on 12 targets), not Eddie Royal (7-43 on 9 targets) who shined for his QB.  Brian Hoyer may have won the QB job outright, even when Jay Cutler comes back from his thumb injury.  Hoyer was 33/43 for 397 yards with 2 TDs and no picks.  Hoyer has thrown for over 300 yards with 2 TDs and no Ints in his last three games!  He has a juicy matchup against Jacksonville this week, but then they are @GB and home against Min before his Week 9 bye.

Philip Rivers / Travis Benjamin / Tyrell Williams – Philip Rivers (21/30 for 359 yards with 4 TDs / 2 Ints) continues to impress and had his 3rd straight 300 yard game and has thrown 4 TDs in 2 of his last 4 games.  Travis Benjamin (7-117-0 on 11 targets) and Tyrell Williams (5-117-1 on 6 targets) both had 117 yards receiving with Williams also snagging a TD.  Rivers will spread the ball around and remain a QB1 for this year.  As for the WRs, you never know which one will put up stats.  Dontrelle Inman (1-3 on 3 targets) disappeared after last week’s 100 yard performance.

Andrew Luck / T.Y. Hilton – Andrew Luck abused the Chicago Bears secondary for 322 yards and 2 TDs.  T.Y. Hilton (10-171-1 on 11 targets) has scored in 3 straight games and received at least 10 targets in each game this year.

Brandon Marshall – Marshall (8-114-1) saw a whopping 15 targets against a subpar Steelers defense and scored a TD.  He’s now scored in back-to-back games and has seen his targets increase each week.  The recent spike is due to Eric Decker being sidelined, but he’s seen at least 8 targets in every game.

Greg Olsen – Greg Olsen (9-181-0 on 13 targets) helped Derek Anderson in the passing attack this week with Cam Newton out.  Olsen is without question a top 3 TE.

Larry Fitzgerald – With Drew Stanton under center, I didn’t expect a big game from Fitzgerald (6-81-2 on 8 targets) and boy was I wrong.  Fitz scored twice and now has 5 on the season.  On the downside, he’s yet to top 100 yards receiving.

Week 5 – Ground Breakers

David Johnson – On Thursday, David Johnson (27-157-2 and 3-28 on 6 targets) showed why he was such a high draft pick.  This was his first 100 yard game, but he does have 5 TDs on the season.

Ezekiel Elliott – This guy seems to be on this list every week!  Elliott (15-134-2 and 3-37) had another big game and now leads the NFL in carries and rushing yards.

Le’Veon Bell – Bell (20-66-0 and 9-88 on 11 targets) had a tough time in the running game, but showed up as a receiver.  Bell gets one of the biggest workloads in the leagues so he’ll always put up stats one way or another.

LeSean McCoy – McCoy (18-150-0 and 2-8) had a big game against a tough Rams defense.  The Bills are now hitting their stride; they have San Francisco at home and are at Miami the next two weeks.

Theo Riddick – Riddick (11-49 and 6-33-2 on 6 targets) was mediocre but did catch 2 TDs and led the team in carries.  Riddick is the only back making a fantasy impact right now, but Zack Zenner (7-9) did steal some carries.

Injury Report (And Replacements)

Trevor Siemian (Shoulder) – Siemian is expected to return for the Broncos Week 6 game at San Diego on Thursday.  I don’t think I can start him this week, but he does have a juicy matchup.

Tony Romo (Back) – Romo is undergoing another MRI on his back and it’s possible that he returns after the Cowboy’s Week 7 bye.  There’s also talk that he may not even get the starting gig back, but Jerry Jones denies those rumors.

Cam Newton (Concussion) – Cam is questionable for Week 6 with a concussion.

Carson Palmer (Concussion) – As of now, Palmer is still listed as questionable for Week 6 with a concussion, but he’s expected to clear the NFL’s concussion protocol on Tuesday.

Eddie Lacy (Ankle) – Lacy was having a good game before he injured his ankle in the 3rd quarter; he’s questionable for Week 6 vs. Dallas.  The injury is not serious, but James Starks is always a must have for Lacy owners.

Jeremy Hill (Chest) – Hill reinjured his shoulder/chest and did not finish the game on Sunday.  He’s questionable for Week 6 at New England but initial reports are that he’s expected to play.  Bump up Giovani Bernard a few spots.

Latavius Murray (Turf Toe) – Murray missed Week 5’s game and the work was split between DeAndre Washington (9-23 and 5-29), Jalen Richard (8-31 and 6-66), and Jamize Olawale (6-22-1).  Murray is questionable for Week 6 vs. Kansas City but the team is hopeful he can play.

Doug Martin (Hamstring) / Charles Sims (IR – Knee) – Both Doug Martin and Charles Sims missed Monday night’s game against Carolina and Sims was placed on IR.  Jacquizz Rodgers (30-101-0 and 5-28 on 6 targets) led the way in Week 6.  Rodgers is the new Sims.

Rashad Jennings (Thumb) – Jennings is still questionable to play this week.  In his absence in Week 5, Orleans Darkwa got 7 carries, Bobby Rainey got 5, and Paul Perkins got 2.  Rainey also caught 6 balls and has become the new Shane Vereen.

Jonathan Stewart (Hamstring) – Questionable for Week 6.  In Week 5, Cameron Artis-Payne (18-85-2) and Fozzy Whittaker (5-45) shared the workload.

Arian Foster (Hamstring) – Questionable for Week 6.

Jeremy Langford (Ankle) – Langford has missed the past 2 weeks and may not have a job when he gets back.  Jordan Howard has back-to-back 100 yard games and has been giving the Bears a chance to win.

Thomas Rawls (Lower Leg) – Rawls is out for Week 6 vs. Atlanta.  Christine Michael will continue to fill in.

Randall Cobb (Neck) – Cobb took a nasty hit to his head/neck on Sunday.  He’s listed as questionable, but appears to be okay and expects to play Week 6 vs. Dallas.

Steve Smith (Ankle) – Smith left Sunday’s game with an ankle injury.  He’s questionable for week 6.

Dez Bryant (Knee) – Bryant is questionable for Week 6, but there’s a good possibility he sits this one out.  Dallas has a Week 7 bye and they do not want to rush back their star receiver.  Cole Beasley, Terrance Williams, and Brice Butler will need to fill in if he’s out again.

Eric Decker (Shoulder) – Decker is questionable for Week 6.  Quincy Enunwa would get the start opposite Brandon Marshall.

Stefon Diggs (Groin) – Diggs missed Week 5 but will hopefully be recovered from his groin injury after his Week 6 bye.

Mike Wallace (Undisclosed) – Wallace got crumpled on the last play of the game on Sunday.  He’s questionable for Week 6.

Terrance Williams (Shoulder) – It’s believed that Williams suffered a sprained AC joint.  He’s optimistic that he won’t miss any time, but we’ll have to see how he progresses at practice this week.

Gary Barnidge (Ankle) – Barnidge suffered an ankle injury, but it doesn’t appear to be serious.  He’s questionable for Week 6.

Tyler Eifert (Back) – Eifert is questionable to make his season debut in Week 6 at New England.

Words of Wisdom

When it comes to lineup decisions, play your studs.  You should only utilize matchups and surrounding circumstances when comparing two players on a similar tier.  I’m not starting Terrance West @NYG over Mark Ingram vs. Carolina.  West may still put up better stats at the end of the day, but you drafted Ingram for a reason.  I’d rather lose with my studs than take a chance on a lesser player having a good day because of matchup.

Week 6 is right around the corner with the San Diego Chargers hosting the Denver Broncos on Thursday.  It should be a good one!

NFL Week 4 Fantasy Impact


So what have we learned now that we are a quarter of the way through the NFL season?

  • Passing OffenseMatt Ryan and Drew Brees lead the two most prolific passing offenses in the league, averaging over 300 yards per game. Ben Roethlisberger is tied with Ryan for the league lead in passing TDs with 11 (Brees has 10).
  • Rushing Offense – You can believe that Ezekiel Elliott leads the NFL in rushing (412), but Isaiah Crowell is a close #2 with 394 yards and 3 TDs! Melvin Gordon leads the league with 6 rushing TDs.
  • Receiving – It’s not a stretch to see Julio Jones leading the league in receiving yards with 488, but Marvin Jones is a close #2 with 482. A.J. Green leads the league in receptions with 32 and is 3rd in yards with 468.  Five receivers are averaging a TD per game (A.Brown, Nelson, Crabtree, K.Benjamin, A.Robinson).   Greg Olsen and Jordan Reed are top three in receptions and yards for TEs.

Now here’s the rest of the week 4 fantasy recap…

Week 4 Aerial Attack


Matt Ryan / Julio Jones
– What a day!!!  Ryan topped 500 yards passing and Jones topped 300 receiving!  Jones (12-300-1 on 15 targets) put up the first 300 yard receiving day since Calvin Johnson did it in 2013. Matty Ice was 28/37 for 503 yards with 4 TDs and 1 Int.  Matt Ryan is having a career year, but remember it’s only been 4 games.  He won’t keep up this pace, but could be a top 5 QB this year.

Ben Roethlisberger / Antonio Brown – Ben and Brown rebounded well from their blowout loss to the Eagles last week and manhandled the Chiefs.  Ben was an efficient 22/27 for 300 yards and 5 TDs.  Brown (4-64-2 on 5 targets) didn’t have his typical workload, but he made his looks count with 2 TDs.

Derek Carr / Michael Crabtree – Carr is continuing to progress in his 3rd year in the league.  Carr only put up 199 yards passing, but he threw 4 TDs with no Ints and three of them went to Crabtree.  Crabtree (7-88-3 on 12 targets) has been the best WR on the Raiders this year, but I sure am not giving up on Amari Cooper.  If anything, I’m trying to buy low on him.

Brian Hoyer / Eddie Royal – Of course everyone expected this…  Eddie Royal (7-111-1 on 7 targets) led the receivers on this day.  In place of Jay Cutler, Hoyer was 28/36 for 302 yards and 2 TDs.  I like Royal as a waiver wire pickup this week.  Kevin White was placed on IR, the Bears are going to need to throw no matter what, and Alshon Jeffrey is not a poster child of health.

Philip Rivers / Dontrelle Inman – Inman (7-120-1 on 11 targets) was the main cog in the passing game this week.  Rivers was 28/43 for 321yards with 2 TDs and 1 Int.  It appears that any of Inman, Travis Benjamin (4-48-0 on 7 targets), and Tyrell Williams (5-40-0 on 8 targets) can be the go to receiver in any given week.

Andy Dalton / A.J. Green – Green (10-173-1 on 12 targets) put up a monster night on Thursday and won many fantasy games for his owners.  Dalton was 22/31 for 296 yards and a TD.  Right now, A.J. Green is in the top 3 WR conversation, not Odell Beckham.

Russell Wilson / Jimmy Graham – There was a Jimmy Graham (6-113-0 on 8 targets) sighting this week, practically his first since becoming a Seahawk.  Wilson was 23/32 for 309 yards and 3 TDs.  If Graham is healthy and they continue to target him in the passing game, he’ll be a TE1.  I need to see a few more games like this to believe.

John Brown – What a coming out party for John Brown.  Brown (10-144-0) led the team in targets with 16 while Larry Fitzgerald (5-62-0) and Michael Floyd (3-36-1) had 7 each.  Fitzgerald is clearly Carson Palmer’s #1 target, but not so much when Palmer’s not under center.  Brown and Floyd will have a few big games, but a lot of duds too.

Steve Smith – Is this a sign of things to come?  Smith (8-111-1 on 11 targets) showed up in a big way and wants to pick up where he left off in 2015.  He’s a good waiver wire add if available because he’s proven he can be a game-breaker.

Jordan Reed – Reed (9-73-2 on 10 targets) was the man for the Redskins this week and is pushing to be the #1 TE in fantasy football.

Week 4 Ground Breakers


Le’Veon Bell
– Welcome back Bell!  And he paid dividends to his fantasy owners that have waited him out.  Bell (18-144-0 and 5-34 on 6 targets) led the running attack as DeAngelo Williams took more of a reserve role.  Bell’s electric!!!

Ezekiel Elliott – Elliott (23-138-1 and 1 catch for 19 yards) had another big game and it looks like he’ll live up to his potential as a top 5 RB.

DeMarco Murray – Murray (25-95-2 and 2-24) didn’t go over 100 yards but came close and scored 2 TDs.  Murray is showing that he still has something left in the tank and has been a solid RB1 so far this year.

Terrence West – West (21-113-1) was the lead back in week 4 and performed well.  Justin Forsett was inactive for the game and the team has since cut him.  Kenneth Dixon will be returning from injury and it will be interesting to see how this backfield plays out.  West is a low end option because of lack of job security.  Dixon (and Buck Allen) has a lot of hype, but I don’t think I can trust this backfield until the Ravens find a true lead back.

Jordan Howard – Howard (23-111-0 and 3-21 on 4 targets) seems to have filled the role of injured Jeremy Langford pretty well.  Howard got all the rushing load other than 3 carries to recently signed Joique Bell.

Isaiah Crowell – Crowell (15-112-1 and 3-22 receiving on 4 targets) led the browns in rushing again this week.  “The Crow” has had two 100 yard games and scored a TD in 3 of 4.  The Browns stink but somehow Crowell is still putting up stats.

Matt Jones – It was clearly Jones’ backfield in week 4.  Jones (22-117-1 and 2-21) carried the ball 22 times while Chris Thompson and Rob Kelly combined for 4.  I still don’t feel that his job is secure, but it was nice to see Jones have a good day and he keeps the starting gig another day.

Melvin Gordon – This guy is a TD machine in 2016 after not scoring a single one in his rookie year.  Gordon (19-36-2 and 6-43 on 7 targets) wasn’t very efficient with only 36 yards on a big workload, but it was nice to see him also used in the passing game.  He’s a solid RB2.

John Kuhn – Didn’t expect to see him on the list did ya?!?!?  Kuhn had a whopping 3 carries for 5 yards and 2 catches for 7 yards.  Why is he on this list???  He punched in 2 TDs on the ground and one in the air.  Don’t expect a repeat performance this year, but he could cut into Mark Ingram’s short yardage/goal line work moving forward.

Injury Report (And Replacements)


Cam Newton (Concussion)
– Cam is questionable with a concussion he suffered on his short yardage TD run.  If he’s not cleared to play, Derek Anderson will be under center.

Carson Palmer (Concussion) – Palmer suffered a concussion and is already ruled out for week 5.  Drew Stanton will start against the 49ers.  I’m benching Larry Fitzgerald in my lineups where possible, but I think Michael Floyd could put up some stats with Stanton this week.

Latavius Murray (Toe) – It’s doubtful that Murray suits up this week.  Look for DeAndre Washington to lead the backfield against San Diego and he’s a decent bye week replacement.

Doug Martin (Hamstring) – It looks like Doug Martin will be held out of action until after the Tampa Bay’s week 6 bye. Charles Sims will carry the load and Jacquizz Rodgers will also chip in.

Rashad Jennings (Thumb) – Jennings is still 50/50 to play this week.  Orleans Darkwa was the lead back last week, but boy did Paul Perkins look good!  It will be interesting to see how this backfield looks in a few weeks, but I’m staying away for now.

Jonathan Stewart (Hamstring) – Questionable for week 5.

Arian Foster (Hamstring) – Questionable for week 5.

Dez Bryant (Knee) – Bryant is expected to miss week 5 and is week-to-week with a hairline fracture.  Cole Beasley, Terrance Williams, and Brice Butler will likely be the WRs for Dallas.

Eric Decker (Shoulder) – Decker is questionable for week 5.  Quincy Enunwa would be the beneficiary if he doesn’t play and is a decent play against a poor Steelers pass defense.

Tyler Eifert (Back) – Just as Eifert was making progress to make his 2016 debut, he came up lame with a back injury at Monday’s practice.  His status for week 5 is up in the air again.  My patience as an Eifert owner is wearing thin!!!

Antonio Gates (Hamstring) – Gates is back at practice and it looks like he has a good shot at playing this week.  TE Hunter Henry will take a hit in his production if Gates returns.

Zach Miller (Ribs) – Questionable for week 5.

Words of Wisdom

We’re almost a third of the way through our fantasy seasons, but now our team depths will come into play with bye weeks coming in full force.  There are four teams on bye in week 5 (Sea, NO, Jax, and KC) and six teams on bye in week 8.  It’s extremely important to bolster your bench depth before you’re players are off.  It’s great to have speculative picks on your team for those boom or bust players, or backups waiting in the wings, but it’s also important to have some depth with players that actually get playing time.  Look for one week injury replacements if possible, like Orleans Darkwa (12-48-1) this week in place of Rashad Jennings.  And sometimes we have to start a team’s #2 RB in our fantasy lineups due to our injuries and bye weeks.  Here are a few #2’s to consider simply because they get some guaranteed volume:

  • Tevin Coleman (Devonta Freeman)
  • Matt Asiata (Jerick McKinnon)
  • Giovani Bernard (Jeremy Hill)
  • Duke Johnson (Isaiah Crowell)
  • Bilal Powell (Matt Forte)
  • Derrick Henry (DeMarco Murray)
  • DeAndre Washington (Latavius Murray)
  • Wendell Smallwood (Ryan Mathews)

Good luck in Week 5!!!

NFL Week 3 Fantasy Impact



Week 3 ended with a bang on Monday night as the Falcons and Saints combined for 77 points and plenty of fantasy matchups were decided.  Julio Jones (1-16) and Brandin Cooks (2-13) sure didn’t help their teams.  On the other hand, Drew Brees threw for 376 with 3 TDs, Devonta Freeman had 217 combined yards with a TD, and Tevin Coleman scored 3 TDs on 89 combined yards.  Those are some big fantasy games!  The other huge NFL game this week, as far as fantasy impact goes, was the Eagles drubbing of the Steelers.  The Philadelphia defense held the mighty Steelers to 3 points in this one.  Antonio Brown (12-140 on 18 targets) had the only respectable game for the Steelers.  Carson Wentz looked spectacular with his first career 300 yard game, including a 73 yard TD pass to Darren Sproles.  And the kid still hasn’t thrown an interception as a pro.  It’s getting sunny in Philadelphia!

And now onto the rest of the week 3 fantasy recap…

 

Week 3 Fantasy Highlights


Trevor Siemian (Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas)
– Siemian looked like a long time pro in this one throwing for 312 yards and 4 TDs.  His top WRs benefited from the performance with Sanders (9-117-2) and Thomas (6-100-1) both going over 100 yards and combining for 3 TDs.

Matt Stafford (Marvin Jones) – Stafford has started out 2016 looking pretty good.  He threw for 385 yards with 3 TDs / 1 Int.  Marvin Jones (6-205-2) was the beneficiary in this one going over 200 yards receiving.  Jones is filling in the shoes of Megatron nicely!  I’d hold on to both of these players until it falls apart.

Aaron Rodgers (Jordy Nelson) – Rodgers threw 4 TDs but for only 205 yards.  He hooked up with Nelson (6-101-2) on 2 of them.  This tandem may be getting back to form.

Terrelle Pryor – Terrelle “Triple Threat” Pryor put up stats passing, rushing, and receiving.  In the passing game, he completed 3 of 5 for 35 yards, but caught 8-144.  He chipped in 4 carries for 21 yards and a rushing TD.  He’s an okay low-end receiving option, but don’t expect many big games, especially with Josh Gordon returning soon from his suspension.

Carlos Hyde – Hyde (21-103-2) finally went over the century mark this season and doubled his TD total on the year to 4.  He will have up and down games that will likely drive you nuts all year.  With that said, he’s still a solid RB3 and can easily fill in during bye weeks.

Jeremy Hill – Hill (17-92-2) was the only bright spot for the Bengals when they played a tough Denver defense.

DeMarco Murray – Murray (16-114-1) went over 100 yards but still gives up a decent amount of carries to Derrick Henry (10-45-0).  I think this is what we’re going to see as far as the workload split until later in the season when Murray may slow down.

Ezekiel Elliott – Dallas was up early in this one and Elliott (30-140-0) ran it home.  He also had 2-20 in the receiving game.  He’s living up to his RB1 status.

David Johnson – Johnson (19-83-2) is also living up to his first round status with 2 TDs and also caught 3-28.

LeGarrette Blount – Mr. Consistency???  Blount (24-105-2) had another game with 20+ carries and has scored a TD in every game.  Ride him while he’s hot (and before Dion Lewis returns from IR)!

LeSean McCoy – McCoy (17-110-2) looked good this week and has been chipping in 3 to 4 catches per game which helps in PPR leagues.

Todd Gurley – This isn’t quite a highlight, but it’s hope.  Gurley (27-85-2) scored 2 TDs and the Los Angeles Rams put up 37 points.  If the offense can continue to give him this volume, he’s sure to break a few big runs.  As of now, he’s a low-end RB1 with all the upside in the world.  I would not sell low on him.

Allen Robinson – Robinson (7-57-2) had his first decent game of the year.  He hasn’t gone over 75 yards receiving in a game this year, but should be fine as a low-end WR1 / high-end WR2.

Doug Baldwin – Baldwin (8-164-1) had a great game and was targeted 10 times.

Mike Evans – Evans (10-132-1) had a productive day and will continue to be one of the most targeted WRs in the game.

T.Y. Hilton – Hilton (8-174-1) finally woke up in this one.  He was targeted 11 times and looks to be the main beneficiary with Donte Moncrief out.

Jimmy Graham – Is this a return to fantasy relevance???  I sure hope so and so do Seahawk fans.  Graham (6-100-1) was targeted 9 times in the game.  I’m going to wait and see if there’s a repeat performance before I believe.

Cameron Brate – Brate (5-46-2 on 10 targets) has taken over at TE for the recently released Austin Seferian-Jenkins.  Jenkins has since signed with the New York Jets.  I like Brate to be a solid bye week replacement at TE this year.  As for Jenkins, he always shows flashes but just can’t get it together; I’m not buying.

Zach Miller – Brian Hoyer targeted Miller (8-78-2) 9 times in the game and he also got 2 TDs.  He’ll have a few big games but he’s not consistent enough to start on a weekly basis.

Kansas City Chiefs Defense – The Chiefs intercepted Ryan Fitzpatrick 6 times even though they didn’t get any sacks.  They only gave up 3 points to the Jets and scored 2 DTDs.

 

QB Disasters!


Ryan Fitzpatrick
– 6 Interceptions! 6 Interceptions???  Yes, 6!  The Jets couldn’t get anything going in the game and the offense was shut down by the Kansas City Chiefs defense.  He’ll bounce back but he’s only a low-end QB2.

Carson Palmer – While he was respectable with 287 passing yards, 0 TDs and 4 Ints will get you on this list.  He’ll rebound but don’t expect the same career year as 2015.

Cam Newton / Kelvin Benjamin – Cam Newton was sacked 8 times and threw 3 Ints with no TDs.  Benjamin was blanked and only had 1 target against the vaunted Minnesota Vikings defense.  They’ll both bounce back.

 

Week 4 Injury Replacements


Jeremy Langford
– Langford is out 4-6 weeks with a severe ankle sprain and Jordan Howard looked good as his replacement in week 3.  He had 9 carries for 45 yards and 4 catches for 47 yards.  Ka’Deem Carey has his own hamstring injury but could get some work if active.  Howard is the running back to own while Langford is out and should be a hot waiver wire pickup.

Thomas Rawls – Rawls is expected to be out for “a few weeks”.  If you’re a Rawls owner and don’t already have Christine Michael, you’re probably too late.  In his absence in week 2, Michael (20-106-2) ran for over 100 yards with 2 scores.  He looks to carry the load until Rawls returns.

Chris Ivory – In his first game back from an undisclosed injury, Ivory injured his knee and ankle in this week’s game.  He’s questionable and we’ll have to see how his practice week progresses.  If he’s out, T.J. Yeldon should carry the load against a weak Indianapolis Colts defense.

Shane Vereen – Vereen was placed on IR and will be out the next 8 weeks at minimum.  If Rashad Jennings doesn’t return to action this week, Orleans Darkwa (10-53-1) will likely be the lead back.  Paul Perkins and the flashy Bobby Rainey could both get some carries.

Ryan Mathews Wendell Smallwood (17-79-1) carried the load after Mathews left the game after only 2 carries.  Kenjon Barner (8-42-1) chipped in as well and Darren Sproles (6-128-1) was used in the passing game.

 

Words of Wisdom

Through 3 weeks of the fantasy season, we now know where our teams’ strengths and weaknesses are.  Bye weeks will be starting in week 4, and depth at all positions is so important.  All fantasy players will be tested to roll out competitive lineups with the off days and injuries already piling up.  Week 4 will have the return of Le’Veon Bell from suspension.  And we expect Tom Brady and Josh Gordon to infuse fantasy teams in week 5.  Be active on the waiver wire but don’t just waste pickups on every one week wonder.  Remember, that free agent pickup could win you a fantasy championship!

Fantasy Football: Week 3 Stars and Stiffs Report


ben

As we sit at week 3, the Stars and Stiffs Report is here to point out the guys who you should feel safe about starting and the ones who are better off left at the bar until closing time. After the battles along the lines over the last 2 weeks, there is plenty to be concerned about heading into week 2.

Last week we saw the shootout of the week totaled 29 points and still haven’t seen Allen Robinson step onto the field the way we remember. Guys like Matt Forte and CJ Anderson have shown the RB position is not dead, while Kelvin Benjamin shows us it is still a pass first league.

The world of sports media can be a beautiful thing when all parties are involved and engulfed in a stern debate. As always, I look forward to your opinions and feedback. You can tweet with any questions (@TCutillo23) and leave your comments below. For my statistical hounds out there I will put last week’s stats in parentheses so you can see how I performed. Here are my picks for week 2………….

Stars for Week 3 (Last Week…4 out of 8…..50%)

QB: Ben Roethlisberger (@PHI), Andrew Luck (SD), Matt Ryan (@NO)

RB: Eddie Lacy (DET), David Johnson (@BUF)

WR/TE: Jordan Reed (@NYG), Michael Crabtree (@TEN), Eric Decker (@KC), A.J. Green (DEN)

 

Stiffs for Week 3 (Last Week….3 out of 6….50%)

QB: Sam Bradford (@CAR)

RB: Jeremy Hill (DEN), Frank Gore (SD)

WR/TE: Desean Jackson (@NYG), Torrey Smith (@SEA), Sammie Watkins (ARZ)

 

Sleepers: (Last Week…2 out of 3….75%)

Cruz (WAS), P. Dorsett (SD), Matt Ryan (@NO)

 

Bust Alert: (Last Week….2 out of 2….100%)

Jeffery (@DAL), M. Wallace (@JAC), T. Austin (@TB)

 

Week 3 Triple Threat…….

Ben Roethlisberger (@PHI) Big Ben still remains a hot commodity in the fantasy world due to the offense he runs. He continues to get stronger with age and shows he can make the best of anything that may be thrown his way. Rodgers, James and Coates are all becoming relevant due to the arm of Big Ben. The Yellow and Black show comes to Philly and the fireworks are already being planned.

Ezekiel Elliot (CHI) – The Dallas Cowboys haven’t blown anyone away this year, but they still have an exceptional running game partly due to the man they call Zeke. Since Zeke decided to use his time to study defenses instead of rolling some professional sized blunts, the offense has rolled along. He is the most important part of the offensive side of the ball and this week he will show the Bears why is he was picked as the early favorite for ROY.

Julio Jones (@NO) – Does he have a bad ankle? Does he have a bad hip? Does it really matter? Year after year we constantly debate on who the best receiver in game is, when all along it has been Julio. This guy runs like a cheetah and catches the ball effortlessly. He wins Fantasy Championships!

Remember, he came very close to 2000 yards receiving last year. This may be the year he hits the mark!

***As always you can stop by my FB page (FantasySportsAddcition) or Tweet me @TCutillo23 for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly via the internet stream Live at WengRadio every Monday at 4:00pm EST for a weekend sports wrap. But most importantly, you can catch me here at PI!

***For Fantasy Purposes, all my articles are predicated upon a PPR based system…

 

“The Fantasy Factor” Week 3: Houston Texans vs. New England Patriots


brissett

Welcome to the third edition of The Fantasy Factor. The Fantasy Factor was unveiled in week 1 and continues to recap all the intricate details of the week’s Thursday night game. Historically, the Thursday night game has not been very fan friendly towards the fantasy world, but it still offers us a decent gauge of what to look for in future weeks. However, after witnessing many individual offensive explosions in the first two games, we were actually ready for a letdown. In this segment, I hope to enlighten you on some interesting facts, as well as some hard thought out analogies to give you a smile going into the weekend. Let’s dive in, shall we?

Coming into Thursday night’s game all eyes weren’t on the new look 2-0 Texans, but instead on the rookie debut of NE Quarterback Jacoby Brissett. Last week against the Dolphins, Jimmy G was moving the ball with ease until a shoulder injury forced him to the locker room and left the NE faithful with the thought of a rookie running the show until Tom Terrific was able to play. That thought was turned into a reality and Brissett played the game that was mapped out for him all week. Only 19 pass attempts and a 27 yd rushing TD was all that was in the cards to keep the rookie safe.

The Texans on the other hand were a 2-0 team still looking for an identity. Brock Osweiler was brought in to Houston to be the franchise QB they needed to excel them into the next step. He was an unproven commodity and commanded a steep price in order to get him out of Denver. The thought was with a stout front line that includes Wilfork and Watt, the Texans just needed a game manager to succeed. It is only a few weeks into the season, but Brock has at the very least given them a solid presence behind center.

The following highlights are what I think were the most important fantasy factors to take away from last night’s game:

I. New England Players Will NOT be Fantasy Relevant under Jacoby Brissett. 

The Pats are 3-0 and just wiped the field with the Texans, who couldn’t of beat a high school JV team last night. However, it was the way in which they won that should concern Gronk and Edelman owners. The game-plan was a simplistic outline of short throws and 39 rushing attempts all to keep rookie in complete control of his offense.  Jacoby Brissett threw for just 103 yards in a very simplified offense. As of now, NE will be a sad place for fantasy players with only the occasional big play from time to time…..The following is the breakdown….

J. Edelman 4 38 9.5 0
M. Mitchell 1 27 27.0 0
D. Amendola 2 23 11.5 0
M. Bennett 2 10 5.0 0
C. Hogan 1 3 3.0 0
J. White 1 2 2.0 0
R. Gronkowski 0 0 0 0

 

II. Bill Belichick had DeAndre Hopkins in his Pocket.

As Brock Osweiler frequently dumped the ball to tight end Ryan Griffin, who led the team with 10 targets, it was clear that New England was not going to let Hopkins beat them. They bottled him up most of the night and left the underneath routes open on a consistent basis. Even the few catches that Deandre did make were in traffic and required some magic. Here is how Hopkins has fared over the years against Mr. Belichick…..

2013 – 2/77……….2015 – 3/52……….2016…….4/56 = 9/185

It will be interesting to see if owners panic enough to sit their stud receiver in any future match-ups…Stay tuned!

III. Lamar Miller is the Bell Cow Back in Houston.

When Lamar Miller was signed in the off-season, the comparisons to Arian Foster type stats were running rampant. Knowing his athletic ability and knack fro being a very capable pass catching threat, I was one of those people hyping him up in the draft. You will read on many sites about Miller not yet averaging better than 3.8 yards per carry in a game and how is numbers are way down. However, in fantasyland we hold a very different perspective. Usage is always a top priority and based on the first 3 games of the season (28 touches per game), Miller has left his owners with no reason to panic.

IV. There are Plenty of Targets to go Around in Houston

Coming into this year, many owners were worried there may be a cut in production for DeAndre Hopkins with the growth of Jalen Strong and the drafting of Will Fuller. As we go into the first part of the season it looks as though there is no reason to worry.

DeAndre Hopkins – 27 Targets and 16 receptions

Will Fuller – 25 Targets and 12 receptions

LeGarrette Blount Will Quietly be a Solid RB2 in 2016. 

With the suspension of Tom Terrific, the Pats needed to find themselves a rock they could lean on in 4 games. They needed someone to take the load off of Jimmy G and now Jacoby Brissett. LeGarrette Blount has always been known for being a workhorse in the back field, but Bill Belichick hasn’t leaned on a RB since the Corey Dillon days. This year looks to be different.

So far he is averaging 25 carries a game, a 4.0 average per carry and just under 300 yards. Obviously anything can change when Tom Terrific returns, but a high powered running attack is something he probably would welcome with open arms.

This was the first dud of the Thursday night telecasts, but it still gave us an opportunity to see how the Pats would run their system. We learned they will be conservative and also that Brock maybe arrested at the end of the season for stealing so much money. Either way your opinion sways on the games, it will keep us watching and allow me the opportunity to give you the weekly Fantasy Factor!

As always, you can stop by my Facebook page (Fantasy Sports Addiction) or tweet me (@TCutillo23) for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly  via the internet stream live at WENG RADIO every Monday at 4:00 P.M. ET for a weekend sports wrap. But most importantly, you can catch me here at Pi!

For fantasy purposes, all my articles are predicated upon a PPR-based system.

Week 2 Fantasy Football Fallout and Future Thoughts


Here we are. Week 2 is in the books and you’re already reevaluating how your team is constructed. Is it time for a trade or do you stand pat and wait for your players to perform? In the average fantasy season, you only have 13 weeks to shine. Obviously you do not want to cut bait too soon, but if you wait too long, odds are you already passed on a few stars that are shining for another team. This week showed us that the fantasy football gods continue to be unpredictable and leaves us scratching our heads as we shake our Magic 8-Ball for answers.

Let’s take a look at the recap below:

Standout Stars

QB

  • Newton…………353 yds 4 TD/1 INT
  • Ryan……………..396 yds 3 TD/1 INT
  • Rivers……………220 yds 4 TD

RB

  • Forte……………..100 yds, 3 TD….2 rec, 9 yds
  • Bernard…………17 yds….9 rec, 100 yds 1 TD
  • Williams………..94 yds…4 rec, 38 yds 1 TD

WR/TE

  • Diggs……………….9 rec, 182 yds, 1 TD
  • K. Benjamin.…..7 rec, 108 yds 2 TD
  • T. Benjamin……6 rec, 115 yds, 2 TD

Last week’s picks: 4 out of 8, 50%

….

Substandard Stiffs

QB

  • Luck……………….197 yds, 1 TD/1 INT
  • Wilson……………254 yds
  • Winston…….….243 yds, 1 TD/4 INT

RB

  • Foster…………….9 yds…(Injury)
  • Martin……………23 yds…(Injury)
  • Bernard…………25 yds….2 rec, 5 yds

WR/TE

  • Moncrief…………1 rec, 9 yds (Injury)
  • J. Brown………….1 rec, 14 yds
  • G. Tate…………….2 rec, 13 yds

Last week’s picks: 3 out of 6, 50%

Surprise Performers (Sleepers)

Stefon Diggs – Diggs came into his own as a rookie last year and compiled 85 targets in 13 games. He was up and down as rookies usually are, but showed flashes of a true #1. It looks like he has turned those flashes into a reality and is going to make 2016 the year he puts it all together. Through his first 2 games this season he has a line of 16/285/1. In a PPR league he has compiled 50 fantasy points and is sitting in the top 15 for WR’s. In an offense that will be looking for options without AP, Diggs looks to produce WR1 numbers for the foreseeable future. Congrats to the owners who took a chance on him in the later rounds.

Travis Benjamin – When Benjamin signed as a free agent in the offseason, he was being talked about as an underrated option in San Diego. Now that Allen and Woodhead are out for the year, he becomes the main target for Phillip Rivers. He has the speed and deception to be a great asset, but will have to prove he can put up WR1 numbers before he inserted into weekly lineups.

Last week’s picks: 2 out of 3, 75%

Statistical Busts

Devonta Freeman – If you are anything like me, you have reservations for players who come out of nowhere in year 1 and have a risk of the sophomore slump in year 2. Freeman was that guy for me. He took the NFL by storm and looked like the next Priest Holmes, but he slowed down after the first 8 games and came into 2016 with alot of questions. With a head coach who already mentioned the words of RBBC, his future outlook doesn’t look promising. He honestly may struggle to finish in the top 20 this year. A total of 50 yds rushing and 3 catches in 2 weeks isn’t going to cut it.

Allen Robinson – The milk carton, “Have You Seen Him” award this week goes to ARob. This is a guy who was picked to be one of the top WR’s in fantasy this year. Instead he has been stuck in neutral as his QB looks like he studied the motions of Jay Schroeder over the summer instead of John Elway. The Jacksonville offense is very talented and hasn’t even touched on their potential yet this year. ARob has lived in garbage time over the last 2 weeks and is hungry for a main course. I still think he will get his numbers, but I can’t lie and say I don’t a bad feeling going forward. Hopefully, this isn’t one of the guys that falls from fantasy grace this year. Keep hope alive my fellow owners.

Last week’s picks: 2 out of 2, 100%

Week 2 Thoughts and Theories

-It’s time to worry about Jamal Charles – Jamal Charles continues to work his way back from a torn ACL and the fact that he hasn’t been able to play yet is concerning. There wasn’t much info coming out of camp until the last few weeks when we started to hear whispers about him not being ready to get on the field. You know it is serious when his doctor was quoted as being concerned. Unfortunately, I see this playing out like the Dion Lewis situation. He could go back under the knife to see what is going on. In that case he may not be back until week 10. Either way this is a mess for fantasy owners who drafted in early August.

Carson Wentz is a winner on the NFL field, but not a relevant fantasy QB. In the world of fantasy we always look at stats and not win/loss percentage. We want to see who can throw up the most points instead of concerning ourselves with who wins the game. Carson Wentz has been stellar in his first 2 weeks as a rookie, but his line of 468 yds and 3 TD’s isn’t going to make him a weekly starting option. He is definitely an Alex Smith prototype.

Adrian Peterson’s best days may be behind him – When people asked me who my choice for biggest bust of 2016 was I told them AP. Most were shocked and couldn’t believe I was down on the electrifying RB. I was really concerned with how much tread was on the tires and thought this was the year he would be taken off the field on third downs more frequently. Unfortunately for AP owners, my prediction came true for the first 2 weeks and now he is on the shelf with no timetable for a return. Jerick McKinnon is the man to own in Minnesota going forward.

Giovani Bernard continues his PPR dominance. – Last year we seen the rise of Gio in an offense that loves to throw the ball. Sure Jeremy Hill will score on the goaline, but in a PPR league Gio will continue to see 8+ targets a game helping him stay among the top pass catching backs in the league. Start him as a FLEX with confidence.

My Skinny Post for Week 2

The injuries continue to mount for the Chargers, as they must have been breaking mirrors in the offseason; two starters in two weeks seems like a new form of the Madden curse … Cam Newton and Kelvin Benjamin are clicking more than a dollar store cap gun. These guys are taking over the offensive side of the ball while Benjamin flips everyone off who said he was an out of shape replacement players in the summer … The Atlanta Falcon’s backfield continues to be unsettled as the whispers of the dreaded abbreviation RBBC is being flashed with every other carry. Freeman owners can now panic … Melvin Gordon proves to be one of the biggest steals in the draft. The Bob Marley throwback has piled up 177 yards from scrimmage and 3 TDs in two weeks, which are RB1 numbers. Congrats if you were the owner who dropped the chicken wing in round 12 to draft him … Eddie Lacy continues to move like he is running a marathon in the streets of Boston and their record snowfall. Has anyone one else found the weight he supposedly lost in the offseason? … Mark Ingram is starting to play like the guy we all knew he was. All hype and no game in an offense that treats him like the unwanted child in a dysfunctional family ….  Arian Foster once again is injured after two games. This is what happens when you pound your body with cheeseburgers all offseason and try to hang with well conditioned athletes … Looks like Pete Carroll may actually be Sleepless in Seattle as he tries to figure out why his offense is moving the ball at a slower speed than Rob Ryan’s fastest time in the 100 yd dash … Speaking of Ryan, looks like the Buffalo Bills have been torn apart by the huge ego and arrogant preaching of Rex. This may actually be where Fantasy players go to die. You have been warned.

Now, it’s onto Week 3.

As always, you can stop by our Facebook page (Fantasy Sports Addiction) or tweet me (@TCutillo23) for questions or some nice fantasy debates. I can also be heard weekly  via the internet stream live at WENG RADIO every Monday at 4:00 P.M. ET for a weekend sports wrap. But most importantly, you can catch me here at Pi!

For fantasy purposes, all my articles are predicated upon a PPR-based system.

….brought to you by Fantasy Sports Addiction

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