Fantasy Football Metrics

2014 Week 16 Dynasty-Fantasy Recap: Jags vs. Titans (12/18/2014)

Twitter @FFMetrics

Sometimes you pre-predict a game hitting on all cylinders—and I did that last night. Not just ‘calling’ the winning team/wager cover, but most of the storylines. I would like to celebrate this with you, as you figuratively hoist me up on your shoulders as confetti streams from an adoring audience of onlookers. I would like to daydream about this event occurring, but I suspect less than 1.0% of our readers actually watched this game at all…or at least past half-time. So, now you’ll have to just take my word for it…

 — I told you two things pre-game that no one else, nationally, will admit (because they don’t see it/don’t want to see it):

1) Blake Bortles (13-26 for 115 yards, 1 TD/0 INT) is an awful, awful, awful QB prospect. I’m not jumping on a bandwagon, I said that day-one of NFL Draft evals in January through three seconds ago—and ‘no’ he doesn’t need more time to be evaluated. He is awful.

I hope you saw the terrible hitch in his throws, and his ability to not-read the defense last night—as I crowed all season/yesterday. If you didn’t (because you we’re smart, and did something else besides watch this atrocity of a football game), Phil Simms/Tommy Flanagan did. He pointed out what everyone in the football world should be screaming about, and ridiculing, but that narrative…that ridicule is only reserved for those QBs the media wants to target—so Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel are fodder, and Bortles skates by. I know it is true because Simms spent a minute basically saying his throwing motion is terrible, but because he is a shill, he also then promised us “He’ll clean that up in the off-season, and be much better.” Yeah, ahh no he won’t.

Even Deion Sanders swerved into a proper critique at half-time, something to the effect of: “It seems this guy (Bortles) is making up his mind before the snap. That’s not good.” If Deion Sanders sees it…

Teddy Bridgewater is progressing quickly. Blake Bortles gets worse with every game. that didn’t stop Phil Simms from sharing the single best/worst moment of my week (this, and Tony Siragusa’s opening analysis before kickoff…priceless): ‘Simms top-5’. Simms top-5 is some ridiculous top-5 list that makes absolutely no sense every week, and exists just to get on my nerves. I well up the same emotions about his in-game top-5 list, much like my Fantasy Football emotions in general: I hate it so much, I love it. I love to hate it so.

This week his top-5 rookie QBs. Set up as, “The best-looking rookie QBs you’ve (Simms) seen play this year.” I swear this happened…

#5…Johnny Manziel.

If I were in pre-production meetings, I think I would have brought up, “Maybe this isn’t the best week to say our lead football analysts #5 best QB he has seen is Johnny Manziel, considering he just posted the single worst game of QB-ing in NFL history”? If I’m Simms, I’d maybe want to strike that, but because Simms has no football soul (like I ranted pre-game), he proudly lists Jonathan Football right away, and steamrolls over what happened last week. He may have said something like: He (Manziel) had a tough week last week, but has two weeks before season end to work it out.

Really? You’re going to go on record with this publicly? It doesn’t matter because you will forget, and he has no soul so next week he will say he never liked Manziel from the first time he saw him. No football soul.

Blake Bortles was his #3, because along with no football soul…he has no football eye either. For FYI sake, and just to be sure to be completely wrong, he listed Derek Carr over Teddy Bridgewater as his #1…just to purposely tweak me.

Anyone think I’ll be hired to do any football analysis for CBS someday? That’s why we need your support! I will burn every bridge toward storming the NFL castle.

Where was I? Oh, Bortles was awful. He throws the ball without reading defenses. He is panicked. He has horrific throwing posture/position—every pass that comes out of his hand wobbles. I’m not sure when the last time he threw a tight spiral beyond five-yards is…but I’m not sure it’s happened once in 2014. Truly, jaw-dropping awful…and no one is saying it nationally. I say onto you for the millionth time…they have no idea what they are looking for—not analyst, nor coach.

Actually, they do know what they are looking for—it’s just all wrong. They are looking for ‘first in, last out’ guy. It’s working out smashingly.

How you do not fire the Jags QB coach for what was on display last night, and all season…I have no idea. Several TV analysts pointed out Bortles’ flaws…with Simms basically saying his throwing motion needed an overhaul at one point. Why wasn’t this addressed before? Is the Jags QB coach too dumb to notice what everyone else sees?

It won’t happen…all the Jags coaches will be back next season. The NFL analysts have to keep mentioning the Jags as ‘a young team on the rise’ for the umpteenth year in-a-row. That’s the one thing all analysts agree on: Bortles is progressing, and the Jags have great young talent they all love. Please keep linking yourselves to that sinking ship. Again, it will all be forgotten later by fans. So who cares?

2) I told you no QB throws for more (pardon my French, but I think I need to spell it out here)…no QB throws for more bullshit than Blake Bortles. I proclaimed yesterday: 103% of his numbers comes right before half-time or at the end of games when they are getting their asses kicked (per usual), and he benefits from dump passes versus soft zones to gobble up yards.

Check this out. Right before the half, down by 10, three-minute drill against a soft zone (Titans cruising with a 10-0 lead to protect)…Bortles leads a TD drive. He goes 5-6 for 42 yards and a TD alley oop throw on the before half drive.

In the other 57 minutes of play, here’s Bortles numbers from this game: 8-20 for 63 yards and 0 TD/0 INT.

All you will hear today is how Bortles is getting better, and the Jags are on the rise. I swear, I moving to Montana and locking myself in a remote cabin if this keeps up.

 — Because Bortles is awful, and most all of his passes are errant, Cecil Shorts (2 rec. for 15 yards on 7 targets) looks like an idiot. At first, I wanted to blame Shorts for the drops that were mounting. He would have his hands on the ball with no catch, but upon further review…it’s that Bortles is awful. Every throw past a few yards to Shorts is either behind him, or too high, or too low. If Blake Bortles ever hits Cecil Shorts perfectly on a 10+ yards throw down field with a spiral on a non-alley oop timed deep ball, I may retire from football scouting.

 

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 — I also said Nate Washington (2 rec. for 18 yards on 3 targets) was FF-trouble because of Charlie Whitehurst (24-35 for 287 yards, 1 TD/0 INT) and he not having a real connection. Ta da.

What I didn’t see coming was Leon Washington (4 carries for 11 yards, 7 rec. for 62 yards and 1 TD on 7 targets) would be the best player on the field in this game.

I think it was Jeff Foxworthy who said, “If your big win of the season is one barely getting by a team led by Charlie Whitehurst and Leon Washington…you might not be a ‘team of the future’.” If I hear anyone on the radio or TV today talk about the impressive or up-and-coming Jags starting to put it all together because of this win…I’m going to check-in to an insane asylum.

What they aren’t really talking about, outside of Tennessee, is that the Titans are actually worse than the Jaguars…or at least they have fallen totally into the same level of bad with them. I don’t mean bad team. I mean bad/hideously run franchise.

I think it was Jeff Foxworthy who said, “If you lose back-to-back games to the Jets and Jags…you might not be a team of the future’.”

 — IDP Telvin Smith (15 tackles, 1 TFL) bounced back from a couple of mediocre output games.

I did not see him moving to ILB, and thus racking up nice FF-numbers back in the summer. I’m not 100% sure he stays at ILB into 2015, but he might. If he does, he’s a 130+ tackle a year guy just on athleticism (and the defense is always on the field).

 — Toby Gerhart (12 carries for 53 yards and 1 TD, 1 rec. for 7 yards) missed a chunk of this game, but when he was in, he looked terrific. He ran with power and nice vision. If he didn’t miss a section of this game with a rib injury, he would have gone for 100+, I think.

This was the Gerhart I was looking for this year, but he got hurt opening-day, and is finally right now…a little/lot too late. Just saying, I’m not insane–Gerhart is a good NFL RB.

 

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics.com, and a football projections analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics.com. His group also provides player projections for Advanced Sports Logic’s football software “The Machine.” See “The Machine” here: The Machine via FFM

 **If you enjoy the free content on Fantasy Football Metrics.com please consider making your next Amazon purchase through our website/link partnership with Amazon. You’re going to buy something at Amazon anyway, there is no extra charge — help give us a little love! Feel free to save/bookmark this link in your favorites and you will have it for all future Amazon purchases. Thanks for your consideration! Link — Amazon.com: Online Shopping for Electronics, Apparel, Computers, Books, DVDs & more **

 

Dynasty Stash 2014 Report Has Been Updated…

I added another chunk of player reports to the Dynasty Stash Report (offense)–that report update is out there for you now.

I added a couple of players we didn’t see available in most Dynasty leagues, but so many inquiries came in on a few players, that I added two that made sense: Christine Michael and Cody Latimer–are now on there. 

You will see another dozen or so players added, and ranked accordingly. All new reports have a red ‘new’ next to them.

You will also notice a ‘school grade’ next to each name–just to give an idea of the tiers we value them within today. 

I am going to keep adding reports of the offense right up to Dec. 28th (last game of year)–we might end up with 100+ offensive Dynasty Stash reports (goal is 75+). As well, I will keep re-ranking the stash list as new info hits. Every time something new happens–I will announce it with a post, and a brief summary.

 — IDP Dynasty Stash 1.0 is planned to hit today or tomorrow.

 — The ‘Sell High’ report will hit sometime next week.

 — The ‘Strategic 2015 ‘ report will hit by year’s end. 

All you need to do to tap into the latest: Re-click the link you were sent upon purchase, and that’s it!

Want the Dynasty Stash Package of reports…

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Thanks, RC

 

TNF Week 16 Wager…

I’m going to do it–I’m playing Jacksonville, as a favorite, to actually cover. I wish Chad Henne would have played, but I’ll tone down my wager and go with Blake Bortles (you don’t know how that pains me). I have a feeling JAC is going to dominate TEN via defense…and then be plausible enough on offense–led by Toby Gerhart!

Good Luck whatever way you are playing.

7.5 = Over/under contradictions and bold-faced non-truths by Phil Simms (I hope he is calling the game, it’s the only thing I am looking forward to–email me when you hear them). 

8:41pm ET = Over/under when Phil Simms tells us how much better Blake Bortles is getting better every week

9:13pm ET = Over/under when Phil Simms says Blake Bortles is not getting any better this season, and that has been an issue all year. 

 

Week 16 Projections Updated (7:45pm ET)

 

2014 Week 15 Dynasty-Fantasy Recap: Jets vs. Titans (12/14/2014)

Twitter @FFMetrics

This is the first time I re-watched a game, and came away with no notes…which is where I began the process. What do I even write here?

 — Do I write about the ‘revenge’ game between Shonn Greene (16 carries for 50 yards, 1 rec. for 3 yards) and Chris Johnson (10 carries for 5 yards)? Who cares? Players are changing teams every hour. Pretty soon Percy Harvin will have an entire schedule of revenge games. The fact that the Tennessee coaches acknowledged ‘revenge’ doubles the pathetic nature of it.

I’m sure the team’s owners would like revenge of CJ2K and Greene pitted against their bank accounts…because they actually paid these guys to play football for them—on purpose.

If I’m Rex Ryan, I would have suited CJ2K. I would have sent him out as captain. Let him play the first play, and not hand him the ball…and then bench him for the rest of the game. Then when he bitched to the media afterwards, I would have announced my exacted revenge on how much he sucked this year, and being part of the reason I’m getting fired. Why can players only have revenge against coaches and teams? I want walking-dead coaches getting in on the act.

 — You do realize the Titans paid Charlie Whitehurst (10-24 for 203 yards, 0 TD/0 INT) $1.5M for this, right?

Worse than this play in this game is the fact that he sucks up a roster spot from taking a look at/developing a real QB. They say, “Oh, he was brought on to mentor the other QBs, because he really understands this offense.” Well, I would retort: Excellent job, because all the Titans’ QBs looked so glorious this season. Good luck in the playoffs this year.

Perhaps, someone needs to exact revenge against whatever this offense is.

QB is everything, and Tennessee just wasted an entire year with Locker-Mettenberger-Whitehurst.

Perhaps, you see something in Zach Mettenberger (I don’t, and I’ never wrong), which is fine, but the trail shouldn’t end with just one lottery ticket…we don’t bet everything on Mettenberger, and then carry a bunch of other dead weight. We do in the NFL. Because they honestly have no idea—QBs to them are like boxes of chocolates to Forrest Gump.

If you think the NFL takes QB development seriously—think about who the Jets and Titans current rostered QBs are right now, and then think of their skill levels. Now answer me this question: With as bad, shaky a roster of QBs as they have…tell me what QB they have stashed on their respective practice squads to develop?

Answer at the end. No cheating.

 — I wouldn’t FF-trust Nate Washington (6 rec. for 102 yards on 10 targets) this week, if Kendall Hunter is out again. We liked that play last week when Jake Locker was QB-ing, because those guys have a decent history together. Charlie Whitehurst is forward pass challenged…it won’t work as well.

 — Jace Amaro (1 rec. for 20 yards on 1 target) we see being rostered in most Dynasty leagues, so we didn’t have him in our original ‘Dynasty Stash’ report, but questions have come in—so we are adding him to it for version 2.0 expected to update later today.

 

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 — The answer to the question on the practice squad QBs the Jets and Titans are developing as of Week 15 end this year: None. Actually, the Titans just signed Alex Tanney a day or two ago, because that’s an original idea. They should start Tanney against KC, Dallas, Cleveland, and TB…all revenge games for him.

 

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics.com, and a football projections analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics.com. His group also provides player projections for Advanced Sports Logic’s football software “The Machine.” See “The Machine” here: The Machine via FFM

 **If you enjoy the free content on Fantasy Football Metrics.com please consider making your next Amazon purchase through our website/link partnership with Amazon. You’re going to buy something at Amazon anyway, there is no extra charge — help give us a little love! Feel free to save/bookmark this link in your favorites and you will have it for all future Amazon purchases. Thanks for your consideration! Link — Amazon.com: Online Shopping for Electronics, Apparel, Computers, Books, DVDs & more **

 

2014 Week 15 Dynasty-Fantasy Recap: Jags vs. Ravens (12/14/2014)

Twitter @FFMetrics

It’s been an interesting week of everyone mocking Johnny Manziel for his horrid debut performance on Sunday, and rightfully so. What’s funny-ironic to me about this is: While it’s true that Manziel may have played the single worst football game at QB I’ve seen from a 1st-round rookie, and thus every radio and TV analyst is now mocking him (even though they were part of the hype train prior)…it is conveniently glossing over the fact that Jacksonville spent a huge draft pick, a #3 overall, on a QB who is almost just as terrible—Blake Bortles (21-37 for 210 yards, 0 TD/1 INT).

I’m not kicking a rookie while he’s ‘rookie-ing’. I’m telling you now, what The Computer saw in January 2014, and what I saw with my eyes in scouting him as well—and it’s still true today: Blake Bortles is going to be a Jake Locker-esque bust. That’s not fair, Jake Locker was/is better.

I hope you see what I see on Bortles, on Thursday Night Football this week…

*Bortles has a horrible delivery of the football. He lowers his arm like a slow-moving crane on one of those ‘games’ where you pay between .25 and $1.00 to try to snatch a stuffed animal or iPod from a mountain of junk, and then he cranes his arm back up to wobble out his medium-to-deep passes. He has an awful hitch when he throws.

*You could live with a hitch if it worked, but you will also notice he is one of the worst decision-makers as a passer in the NFL. He locks on one decision pre-snap, and throws his wounded ducks without reading anything. His big move is looking right, and then quick turning left—throwing to a spot where he a streaking WR is supposed to be streaking. Every once in a while the timing is right, and it works. More times than not it harmlessly goes out of bounds…or into the defender’s hands.

*No QB could possibly have a higher percentage of yards in a two-minute drill. If you take away two-minutes before half-time or end of game, where the opponent is up by 10-30+ on Jacksonville, and are playing a deep zone allowing Bortles to throw simple dink passes to wide-open receivers who then run for yards…take that away, and I’m not sure Bortles has thrown for over 50% completions or over 100+ yards in any game less those gifts.

Because no one cares about Jacksonville, no one is paying attention to a massive fraud once again perpetrated by football analysts.

I can predict what will happen Thursday Night, if he plays…

1) Phil Simms will comically make up lies, per usual.

FYI, there is no football analyst worse than Phil Simms. It’s breathtaking to watch a person talk football with absolutely no conscience. Since this game will be radically boring—entertain yourself with how many times Simms does something like this…

Bortles will complete a simple five-yard pass early on. Simms will proclaim, “I’ve been watching Bortles on tape, and I’m really impressed with his progress, and you see it right there. He has become as good at making five-yard throws as anyone in the NFL.” Simms will take a simple positive, and spin it into how great it and the player is. He is a low-key Jon Gruden.

But this is where the comedy comes in…

A few plays later, Bortles will throw another five-yard pass, and it will get picked-off or right into defender’s hands and dropped…some version of a no-read/blind throw nightmare will occur, and Simms will blurt out, “That’s what I’ve noticed on tape with Bortles. He makes terrible decisions on five-yard throws. He’s got to get better there.”

Phil Simms has no football-soul.

He will say how much better Bortles is getting in the pre-game analysis…when Bortles has thrown 2 TD/4 INT in his last five games…and 7 TD/13 INT in the last 11 games. He labors to complete 55% of his passes now after starting out north of 60%+, and he can barely hit 200 yards passing in any game despite throwing a ton against soft zones. He has been anything but improving. Just note when Simms talks about how much better Blake Bortles is getting in the pre-game–I will be losing it in my office.

2) Any crappy play will be blamed on Bortles’ injury…so the mainstream has its insurance policy if he flops tonight.

What I am hoping happens…

3) The world that doesn’t pay attention to Bortles is now forced to on a solo night game—and they suddenly realize he is awful.

Go Jags!

 — I watched back all 11 targets in this game to Cecil Shorts (6 rec. for 76 yards on 11 targets), and they were all awful. Shorts has lost career millions being stuck in Jacksonville. He is going to be a bargain in 2015 free agency.

It’s also why you cannot trust Shorts in Week 16 in 2014, or Marqise Lee (4 rec. for 14 yards on 9 targets) and Allen Robinson too much (or even a returning Justin Blackmon) in 2015. All you have is hope of garbage-time work.

 — Marlon Brown (5 rec. for 66 yards on 5 targets) is getting me excited again. He led the team in yards and catches in this game. Whatever ailed him earlier in the season, he seems to be shaking it off now…this is three improving (statistically) games in a row.

Fun fact: Marlon Brown has caught an amazing 22 of 25 (88%) of his targets this year.

I might be crazy, but Brown looks like a kinda/sorta like Kelvin Benjamin at work—a nice tall target with that ‘catching radius’.

How excited should you get on Marlon Brown’s Dynasty future? Read our analysis of Marlon Brown, and dozens of others, in our 2014 Dynasty Stash package or reports. Here’s more info on that…

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 — IDP Telvin Smith (5 tackles, 1 solo) is fading, after a hot run a few weeks ago, he has just 5.0 tackles per game the last two weeks. I’d love to see IDP Jeremiah George draw a start Thursday Night.

 — Toby Gerhart (13 carries for 54 yards 2 rec. for 9 yards on 2 targets) is going to be an interesting play for Thursday night—he’s the main Jacksonville RB, facing one of the worst run defenses in the NFL. I kinda like the situation, but still feel gun-shy about getting burned earlier this year on Gerhart.

You could worry about Storm Johnson (6 carries for 19 yards) seeing more action, but he’s terrible so the only threat is the Jags coaches being ridiculous…and that’s always on the table.

 

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics.com, and a football projections analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics.com. His group also provides player projections for Advanced Sports Logic’s football software “The Machine.” See “The Machine” here: The Machine via FFM

 **If you enjoy the free content on Fantasy Football Metrics.com please consider making your next Amazon purchase through our website/link partnership with Amazon. You’re going to buy something at Amazon anyway, there is no extra charge — help give us a little love! Feel free to save/bookmark this link in your favorites and you will have it for all future Amazon purchases. Thanks for your consideration! Link — Amazon.com: Online Shopping for Electronics, Apparel, Computers, Books, DVDs & more **

 

2014 Week 15 Dynasty-Fantasy Recap: Bears vs. Saints (12/15/2014)

Twitter @FFMetrics

So, the Bears are benching Jay Cutler (17-31 for 194 yards, 2 TD/3 INT). This Saints game marks the end of the Jay Cutler era in Chicago, and likely that of Marc Trestman as well. I became a fan of Trestman after the Bears fished out 2013 as one of the top-3 offenses in the NFL. What Trestman pulled out of Cutler last year, and Josh McCown, was nothing short of a miracle.

As much as I had to tip the cap to him last year, and as much as I’d like to make a defense for him now—I cannot. No team plays with less enthusiasm than the Bears of late. Well, maybe Tampa Bay. Trestman hung his reputation on the belief that he could ‘fix’ Cutler, and he did for a bit. The organization, based on the early results, threw a bunch of money at Cutler…and now that decision has killed the company. For that, heads have to roll.

Once again, QB is everything in the NFL.

Coaches are almost nothing.

Jay Cutler reverted back to who he was. So did Josh McCown. Chip Kelly is a genius…except for Mark Sanchez is flopping, as did Michael Vick, and Matt Barkley…a.k.a. all the Philly QBs not named Nick Foles, who have worked under Kelly. Andy Reid did not fix Michael Vick. Name the QB who has spawned out of Bill Belichick’s bosom—none. Matt Cassel was solid for a moment. Ryan Mallett, no one wanted him…he’s as bad today as the day he stepped foot in New England.

GMs have no idea what to look for…any draft history on recent QBs will tell you that.

Kurt Warner, Tony Romo, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Big Ben, Andrew Luck…they just waltz into the NFL and start producing nicely, and winning…and quickly into their career they go off to another level. That’s why I do not understand why everyone hates Nick Foles and Mike Glennon—their early numbers are screaming out that there is something there. Coaches do not make QBs…QBs make coaches.

Coaches kill QBs, but they do not make them.

If this is all a giant random dart throw to find a QB, and we all know QB is everything…why NFL teams are not rostering three of them, and drafting new ones every year, and keeping 1-2 on practice squads—I have no idea. If I were a GM, I’d roster three. I’d keep two on the practice squad. I’d hire 2-3 QB coaches. I’d work them all with the first team in various rotations. The second my team was up or down by 25+ later in games, in my backup QBs would go…and they would be throwing. My desire to get them reps to develop them supersedes whether the opposing coach is going to throw a fit in the media the next day.

I’m sure NFL people would say I was wasting a roster spot with a 3rd-QB. I would retort: Until we have our Tom Brady, we’re going to lose and get fired anyway. Finding the next Brady is everything, and I’d love to find two of them.

The NFL, on the other hand, typically rosters two QBs and has one on the practice squad. You have the starter (good or bad), plus his washed backup, plus a 3rd-string guy who has no hope in the NFL, but is being rep’d by the same agent as the offensive coordinator, or played for the current head coach’s college, or whatever.

QB is not everything to them.

If wanting to fire Marc Trestman because of Jay Cutler wasn’t enough, then his Plan-B QB tips it. He also chose Jimmy Clausen as his backup plan. He could have moved from Cutler earlier had he developed a plausible Plan-B, but coaches think they ‘make’ the QBs…so why waste a lot of time on it. As my Dad and I waxed on tonight about it: “They are always looking for the first guy in the building and the last guy out. Why don’t they look for a QB who can actually play? Any idiot can show up to a building early.” If I hear ‘first guy in the building, last to leave’ one more time, I’ll go insane. With all the players who this stupid label is assigned to, how early does the earliest guy have to get in? It sounds like 30-50 of the 53-man roster plus all the coaches are this dedicated. Are they all lined up at 11:59pm like a Black Friday sale at Best Buy in 2007, just waiting to get in the door at midnight to be the first guy in? How’s this ‘first in’ QB scouting plan working?

I’m sorry Mr. Trestman…you deserve your firing. I don’t care how nice you are, or what kind of guru you might be. You endorsed Cutler and Clausen—you now reap what you sow. You could have been working Ricky Stanzi…or David Fales…or go dig up Ryan Radcliff or Tino Sunseri…or go make a trade for Ryan Nassib or maybe Mike Glennon. Do something radical. *My bad—who makes trades in the NFL? I’m sorry. I thought this was a business run by mavericks and sharks. I was wrong—years ago before I started following the NFL with purpose, I thought everyone in the NFL had to be a mystical genius. They are mystical alright. They will trade draft picks back and forth like candy—because there is no name attached, and they covet the devils they don’t know—emphasis on ‘they don’t know’. They rarely/never trade for actual players.

Jimmy Clausen is a disaster…go all-in on the Detroit-DST this week.

 

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 — I hope something is physically wrong with Jimmy Graham (5 rec. for 83 yards on 5 targets), because he looks like he has been through all the surgeries that Gronk has. However, Gronk is getting fresher as the season wears on, and non-surgery Graham looks like he aged ten years in the past few weeks. It has to be the shoulder…or the big payday, one or the other.

 — You watch Pierre Thomas (5 rec. for 83 yards on 5 targets, 2 carries for 11 yards) work his magic in this game, and you wonder why in the world is he not the feature back ahead of Mark Ingram (17 carries for 59 yards and a TD). ‘17 carries for 59 yards and no catches’ should be Mark Ingram’s new nickname. It’s a little wordy, and hard to fit on his XFL jersey, but it represents him to a tee.

 — IDP Pierre Warren (2 tackles, 2 INTs) had two picks in this game, but they were thrown right to him. He’s been solid filling in of late, but nothing super-special as a DB of the future.

 — IDP Christian Jones (13 tackles, 8 solo) had his second solid/good game in-a-row. He’s one to watch as this season painfully ends for the LB injury-laden Bears.

 

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics.com, and a football projections analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics.com. His group also provides player projections for Advanced Sports Logic’s football software “The Machine.” See “The Machine” here: The Machine via FFM

 **If you enjoy the free content on Fantasy Football Metrics.com please consider making your next Amazon purchase through our website/link partnership with Amazon. You’re going to buy something at Amazon anyway, there is no extra charge — help give us a little love! Feel free to save/bookmark this link in your favorites and you will have it for all future Amazon purchases. Thanks for your consideration! Link — Amazon.com: Online Shopping for Electronics, Apparel, Computers, Books, DVDs & more **

 

Week 16 Projections Updated (7:45pm)

 

Dynasty Stash Article: Christine Michael add

One quick note…

Christine Michael has been a name emailed/asked about (because not on the list). We showed that he is not available in most Dynasty leagues/formats…so I left him off, but he is a big curiosity for many–so I am adding him to the next update. Will post an alert when next update is up–again, just re-click your link and you’ll get the latest when it’s time/any time.

Also–the 1.0 report is in order of our ‘like’/love of each player, but we will add a rank number and/or grade to distinguish it better on the next update.

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2014 Week 15 Dynasty-Fantasy Recap: Eagles vs. Cowboys (12/14/2014)

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The fact that the Eagles lost was a mild shock here, but not crazy shocking. The fact that Mark Sanchez could not step up down the stretch again is no shock either…and we’ll get to that. To me, lost (a little) in all the ‘bad’ or ‘shocking’ things that happened for the Eagles in this game is one major item, and we’ll start with that first because it has Fantasy ramifications…

 — I’d say there is a greater than 50% chance that LeSean McCoy (16 carries for 64 yards, 1 rec. for 1 yard on 2 targets) is playing his last games as a Philadelphia Eagles RB.

Let me ask you this…what big-name, ‘elite’, feature RB comes out of the game in every key spot?

Critical 3rd-down…Darren Sproles (3 carries for 5 yards and 1 TD, 2 rec. for 8 yards on 2 targets) is likely to come in…and deliver. Within five-yards from a TD…here comes Chris Polk (2 carries for 6 yards). Are you serious? When they need a critical pass dumped out of the backfield on 3rd & longer…it’s Sproles for sure.

If they need a guy to run the ball on 2nd & 8, and make a sweet juke while getting tackled for a one-yard gain, setting up 3rd & long…that I’ve seen way too much of from McCoy in 2014.

What exactly are they paying McCoy for…moderate work between the 20’s on 1st and 2nd-down? Are you really going to pay $12M for that in 2015? Because, that’s what the price tag is…or you can cut him for a $4.4M hit…and thus free up $7.6M, sign C.J. Spiller or Roy Helu, plus draft a RB in the 4th-round in 2015, and have a ton of money left over. If I were the Eagles’ GM, I would try to trade, and/or drop McCoy, and then trade Sproles as well—freeing up $16M for 2015. I would try to sign C.J. Spiller and Roy Helu for about $5-6M in 2015. I’d have $10M leftover to spend, and have a similar/better/younger backfield…and $10M to play with.

You’ll know exactly how business savvy the Eagles management is or isn’t with what they do with McCoy. If they bring him back for the full $12M, and you Eagles’ fans are nothing but a pawn…a ‘mark’ being fed ‘Shady’ merch to your heart’s delight. No one builds teams with $12M RBs today…no one but Carolina (they’ll take two, please).

If they let McCoy walk…then you know that you have smart, stone-cold business people doing what’s ‘best for business’ running the franchise. When/if they do it—talk radio will be filled with way-too passionate Eagles fan bellyaching about losing ‘Shady’ with violin music of how he’s the heart and soul of the team/city. Smart football fans don’t perpetually call in to radio shows or go to fan protests…they barely even attend games anymore. The spotlight will go onto the squeaky wheel fans who love to set themselves on fire in public. The backlash will be painful/annoying.

You’ll see what kind of people are running the team—people who know what they are doing, or not, by whether they bring back McCoy at full freight, and also go seeking a new QB…both moves would be made to placate the vocal fans. Perhaps, both moves would just show poor business acumen regardless of ‘the fans’ sentiment. It will not be fan-popular to ditch McCoy, and sign Nick Foles long-term, so I’m not sure they actually have the stones to do it. I think they do, but I wouldn’t bet a lot on it.

The process will start with behind-the-scenes contractual talks about a re-structure with McCoy, and lowering of the overall amount—which is smart. I would assume McCoy is going to balk. Why not? He could get cut, pocket $4M+ in parting gifts, and then have a team like Washington hand him a blank check (see to: DeSean Jackson). If I’m the Eagles, I let him go. If I’m McCoy, I leave for more money elsewhere…a RBs career is incredibly fragile and short. This would be his last chance to cash in.

All this McCoy drama creates a Fantasy Football dilemma: How do you like your LeSean McCoy…as an Eagle (with fond memories of 2013 stuck in your head, making you ignore a disappointing 2012 and 2014) or elsewhere…onto a lesser team most likely (because no smart team is backing up a truck for RBs anymore)? In the past three seasons, McCoy was elite in one…and an average joe in the other two. What are we betting on in 2015? How heavy do you want to bet on it?

The worse thing for FF-purposes might be if he is back with Philly…seeing his 2014 situational usage is FF-frightening. He’s caught six passes in the last seven games. He’s scored a TD in just four of 14 games this season. Also note, Philly has one of the best/the best schedules of easiest run defenses to face this season…and McCoy has been mostly dud with an occasional 100+ game on a ton of carries.

If this Chip Kelly offense is the most run friendly running game system in the universe…then why is McCoy lacking this year with an easy schedule? What would happen if he was playing with Miami or Atlanta next season?

Main-carry RBs are no longer of extreme value. I would bet Roy Helu could have bested McCoy’s numbers if he were in Philly this season. There’s not much to ‘best’ with McCoy in 2014. Definitely not $12M worth of numbers.

 

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 — If Demarco Murray (31 carries for 86 yards and 2 TDs, 1 rec. for 3 yards on 1 target) is out for Week 16, then I trust Joseph Randle (2 carries for 13 yards) running the ball against Indianapolis. Randle has looked awesome in small spurts all season—he’s averaging 7.0 yards per carry this season to-date.

Randle is not long-term awesome. He’s too small/thin-framed at 205-pounds for his 6’0” height, and he’s just a 4.5+ 40-time runner. However, for one week against a bad run defense given Dallas’s O-Line…I’d see 100+ yards happening.

 — Well, I think we all can agree that the Mark Sanchez (17-28 for 252 yards, 0 TD/2 INT) era as future Philly QB is over. By ‘all agree’, I mean even the diehard mainstream football analysts have given up…and by ‘given up’, I don’t mean they’ve apologized. They just do what they do—just stop talking about it, and move on hoping you’ll forget their awful track record.

It’s not over, though.

Sanchez was being given way too much credit when he splashed onto the Philly scene a few weeks ago. Simple opponents, quick starts by the D and special teams, racked passer numbers in garbage time…the media fit the clues to the story they wanted. They made Sanchez a god, and anointed him the future franchise QB.

Philly is now losing…so it’s all Sanchez’s fault. It’s unfair to him.

Sanchez is not playing horrible football. He is giving you as decent a job as one could ever expect from a backup. The comeback, in this game, from 21-0 down to a 24-21 lead was impressive for the team as a whole, and for Sanchez. As you would expect, in crunch time late…Sanchez couldn’t deliver. You don’t want to be in a position where Sanchez has to ‘deliver’.

What are you going to think when Philly wins the division in the end? Because they are…or they should.

If Dallas loses to Indy next week, and I would assume they would, especially without the services of Demarco Murray—all Philly has to do is beat WAS and NYG, and they win the division. That’s very likely going to happen…when it does, here comes all the pro-Sanchez talk again from the national media.

In the end, Sanchez has shown he can hold down the fort against bad teams, but do not ask him to carry the team…because he is not a starter-worthy NFL QB. Whether Philly loses in the playoffs on ‘bad Sanchez’, or he blows it versus WAS or NYG…the Eagles, and everyone knows Sanchez is not the Philly QB of the future (he’s just Cleveland’s QB of the future). There are no viable free agents at QB. What are you going to do…trade for Jay Cutler? There are no ready-made rookie QBs coming in from college to lead a team. Nick Foles will be the QB of the Eagles in 2015+…in the Chip Kelly offense, and that means good things for Foles in Dynasty/Fantasy. One of the most raging bargains in all Dynasty was acquiring Foles as a cheap investment the past few weeks. Hope you got in on it.

 — Don’t forget, Foles triumphant return means Zach Ertz (3 rec. for 32 yards on 4 targets) is a decent cheap play for 2015. He’s a great TE2 who could be a TE1-ish with Foles.

 

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics.com, and a football projections analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics.com. His group also provides player projections for Advanced Sports Logic’s football software “The Machine.” See “The Machine” here: The Machine via FFM

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