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Opposite George Presents Matthew Berry's 100 facts for the 2021 Fantasy Football Season

averagejoe

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1628966250929.png Yes, you read that correctly. Matthew Berry usually publishes his 100 facts by the end of June. Here it is August and there is nothing from him. Apparently, it did not get done this season, so I decided to put together as many as I could for anyone suffering from Berry’s “100 facts” withdrawal symptoms.

Keep in mind I do not have a team of ESPN contributors and statisticians at my disposal to assist in compiling this list. Plus, I have a full-time job that has nothing to do with fantasy football. This is my disclaimer in the event that I do not make it to 100 facts – which is most assuredly going to happen.

If you’re familiar with Berry’s yearly article, he usually throws out a statistical tease to illustrate that it may be misleading to focus on one stat over another. Because I am lazy, it goes something like:

Player A averaged nearly 25 touches a game. He had the second-best scrimmage yards-per-game and tied for the most TD among RB.​
Player B averaged less than 2 catches per game and scored zero receiving TD. He had the most fumbles compared to other RB with his rushing attempts.​

Would you rather have player A or B? Uh-huh, it’s the same guy. Derrick Henry. Now, other RB did have more fumbles, but no other RB had 378 rushing attempts. (See what I did there?)

1) Let’s begin with a fantasy statistic that most experts tend to ignore: Even the best of the best fantasy experts have a 60% accuracy rate. Which is rounded up. Most other experts hover around the 55% accuracy. They may sound pretty convincing and have sound arguments. They may even have inside connections within the NFL industry. Despite all that, 55% is not all that impressive. Maybe less impressive given that this is their job.

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2) I could not find a percentage of accuracy for Matthew Berry. He must be bad or has been blackmailed to hide that accuracy. (See the gif above.)

3) All eyes may be on Justin Herbert to see if he can repeat what he did in 2020. In the last 5 seasons, I sampled 8 rookie QB. Relevant rookie QB who did well in there first season to be specific. In their sophomore season, only 3 of the 8 put up better averages than in their freshman season.

4) Herbert averaged 304.7 all-purpose yards per game in 2020. Both rookie QB who topped the 300 mark average in prior years did not match that same level in their sophomore season, dropping about 32 yards per game less.

5) Desean Watson had 5267 total yards (passing + rushing) which was 200 more than Patrick Mahomes and 300 more than Josh Allen.

6) Carson Wentz had 25 turnovers (interceptions and fumbles) in just 12 games.

7) Wentz’s new team, the Colts, turned the ball over 14 times as a team.

8) To all the Kirk Cousins haters: In the last 8 games of 2020, Cousins was the fourth-best fantasy QB behind Aaron Rodgers, Watson and Allen.

9) Of the QB who have played in all of the last 3 seasons, Cousins is ranked 11 with an average of 261.1 total yards per game.

10) Ryan Fitzpatrick is ranked 9 with 267.1 total yards per game in those 3 years. His redraft ranking is so low he may go undrafted.

11) Since most fantasy leagues have 12 teams, in the last 8 weeks of 2020, Derek Carr and Baker Mayfield were the 11th and 12th best QB, respectively.

12) Currently, Cousins is ranked 16 and Carr 22 among QB in redraft rankings.

13) Only 3 QB have played all 48 games the last 3 seasons. Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Derek Carr.

14) Only 3 QB have averaged over 500 pass attempts the last 3 seasons. Matt Ryan 554.7, Tom Brady 532.7, and Jared Goff 514. Goff is now on the Colts. And Matthew Stafford now takes over for the Rams.

15) Stafford has averaged 575 pass attempts over the last decade.

16) Stafford has a career per-game passing average of 273.4. During the 5 years paired with the reliable Calvin “Megatron” Johnson to throw to, Stafford averaged 289.7 passing yards per game.

17) Derrick Henry won the rushing title and also had 2141 scrimmage yards. That's an average of 133.8 yards per game. But one RB had a better average. Dalvin Cook with 137.0 in just 14 games.

18) The benchmark for RB was 20 touches per game. Only 7 RB averaged that many touches last year. Dalvin Cook (25.4), Christian McCaffrey 25.3 (in 3 games), Derrick Henry (24.8), Joe Mixon 23.3 (in 6 games), James Robinson (20.6), Josh Jacobs (20.4), and David Montgomery (20.1).

Some prognosticators look at the second half stats to find some gems who might be ramping up into fantasy relevancy for the next season. Here are some interesting teammate statistics:

19) The last 8 weeks (from week 10 through 17), teammate J.D. McKissic had 117.8 points compared to Antonio Gibson's 96.9. Gibson is currently a round 2 pick. McKissic could be had in round 11.

20) Same for Cleveland. In the last 8 weeks, Nick Chubb scored 147.5 points while teammate Kareem Hunt racked up 94.3 points. Chubb missed 4 games but both finished 10 and 11 with Hunt edging Chubb by 11 points.

21) 8 RB had a better fantasy average than Chubb. Currently he is the fifth RB being drafted.

22) 22 RB had a better average than Hunt. Currently he is the 24th RB taken in round 5.

23) Including the playoffs, Ronald Jones averaged 71.2 yards per game, doing most of his damage in the passing game. Leonard Fournette averaged 61.6 yards per game. Jones is 24. Fournette is 26.

24) Only 5 teams threw more passes than the Buccaneers. 20% of those passes went to the RB, which was about average by NFL standards.

25) A total of 19 RB finished better than Ronald Jones. 34 RB finished better than Fournette. Regarding Jones or Fourny for 2021? Your guess is as good as mine. At least they play on a good team.

26) Back in 2018, I researched a stat of RB who rushed for negative yards. In 2018, Saquon Barkley led all RB in negative rushes for loss with a whopping -117 yards. 19% of his touches were for loss.

27) Last year, Barkley only attempted 19 rushes. Almost half (9) were for negative yards. While he is credited with 34 positive yards, he also rushed for negative -22 yards.

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28) Stefon Diggs led all WR with 1535 receiving yards. That's an average of 96.0 yards per game. One WR averaged better. Davante Adams averaged 98.1 in 14 games.

29) In the last 8 weeks of 2020, Justin Jefferson had 157 points to Adam Thielen's 123. Thielen was the 12th-best WR in that span and also missed 1 game. Jefferson is a round 2 pick while Thielen is a late round 4 pick.

30) Baltimore WR Sammy Watkins last played with OC Greg Roman in 2015 & 16 while in Buffalo. He appeared in 21 games and averaged 70.3 yards per game.

31) In 2020, no Ravens WR averaged more than 49 yards per game.

32) In 2020, only 17 WR averaged better than Watkins’ 70.3 yards per game (from 2015-16). Watkins is going largely undrafted ranking in the 224 range.

33) In 2020, the Ravens threw a league-low 388 passes. With only 57% of them going to the WR.

34) In the last 3 seasons, only 3 WR have averaged 10 TD. Adam Thielen is one of them. By comparison, Jefferson had 7 TD while Thielen doubled that (and also played 1 less game) with 14 TD.

35) The other 2 WR who averaged 10 TD in the last 3 years were Tyreek Hill (12.3) and Davante Adams (12.0).

36) In the last 8 weeks of 2020, Tyler Lockett had 108.9 points compared to D.K. Metcalf’s 103.5. Here too, Metcalf is being drafted in round 2 while Lockett is waiting around in round 4.

37) I hate TE as a stand-alone position. This is a fact even though it is not statistical.

38) After George Kittle and Travis Kelce, there are not many options. This is opinion. Consider that WR Danny Amendola who was most-likely a fantasy afterthought, averaged 43.1 yards per game. As terrible as that may seem, only 10 TE averaged better. And not by much.

39) Removing the special “K’s” from the average, the other 8 of the best yardage TE saw 49.6 yards per game.

40) TE Robert Tonyan tied Kelce with the most TD among TE (11). If you are expecting Tonyan to repeat, in the last 3 seasons, there is only 1 TE who has come close to averaging double-digit TD. Kelce with a 9.0 average.

41) The two next-best TD averages among TE the last 3 seasons are Jared Cook (7.3) and Mark Andrews (6.7). Cook is now on the Rams and is 34 years-old.

42) The Rams throw to the TE 22% of the time – which is low-end average compared to the rest of the NFL.

43) Time of possession (or TOP) is a seemingly insignificant stat. However, many offenses that stand atop of the time of possession category, correlate well to the top fantasy DST units. The Saints, for example had the second-best TOP. Likewise, their DST was one of the best in 2020. Was the presence of Drew Brees a big reason for both units?

44) In the 4 games without Drew Brees, the Saints DST averaged 9.5 fantasy points per game. In the other 12 games with Brees, the Saints DST averaged 7.2 fantasy points per game.

45) Drew Brees is now retired.

46) A good example of how TOP works against a team: The Giants had one of the worst time of possessions as an offense. From weeks 1 through 9, the Giants were the 7th-best fantasy DST. But after being on the field longer week after week, by weeks 10-17 their DST dropped to 20.

47) The Cardinals quietly had a top-10 DST (depending on your league scoring). The Cardinals also had one of the worst time-of-possession (TOP) offenses. In the last 3 games, their TOP improved (in their overall NFL ranking yet not mathematically) and their DST was the sixth best averaging 26 fantasy points per game in that span.

48) The Broncos are another sleeper DST. Despite playing the Chiefs and Chargers twice, the remaining 13-game schedule is against the second-softest offenses from 2020 that have trouble gaining yards and scoring. Von Miller returns as well.

49) It’s very difficult for a DST unit to sustain take-aways from year to year. Usually, the top DST will drop the following year. Going back 3 years, the top 2 take-away DST units dripped by an average of 14.3 take-aways. Based on most typical fantasy scoring, this dip calculates to 28 fantasy points at minimum. Consider that a percentage of take-aways also factors into DST TD scoring as well.

50) The top 2 take-away DST in 2020 were the Dolphins (29) and Steelers (27).
 
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broncosmitty

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While Kelce leads all TE’s in average TDs the last three years with 9.

And tied with Tonyan in TDs with 11 last year.

George Kittle has 14 total in his four season career.

There is Kelce, then everyone else. I’m not sure Id out Kittle at two anyway.

Love the thread Joe. Just adding a little where I know you don’t really want to look in the first place. Lol
 

averagejoe

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I also don't have an editor to proof my work.

3) All eyes may be on Justin Herbert to see if he can repeat what he did in 2020. In the last 5 seasons, I sampled 8 rookie QB. Relevant rookie QB who did well in their first season to be specific. In their sophomore season, only 3 of the 8 put up better averages than in their freshman season.

14) Only 3 QB have averaged over 500 pass attempts the last 3 seasons. Matt Ryan 554.7, Tom Brady 532.7, and Jared Goff 514. Goff is now on the Colts Lions. And Matthew Stafford now takes over for the Rams.
 

SmokingMonkey

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Great stuff as always joe!

(Cook is TE for chargers not rams)
 

dtgold88

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Never seen this but good stuff. Always thought the "experts" didn't really know more than most.
 

dtgold88

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are there another 50 points somewhere?
 

averagejoe

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Wow.
This thread has been up for 2 weeks and it has over 2000 views!

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averagejoe

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I think people are so overwhelmed by your expertise that they are speechless
Or maybe they're looking for Matthew Berry's yearly column and get this spoof when they do a search.
 

Shanemansj13

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@averagejoe you got competition!

These are 100 facts you need to know. What you do with them is up to you.


1. Over the past three seasons, there are only two quarterbacks with more than 30 games with multiple touchdown passes. Patrick Mahomes and ... Russell Wilson. They are tied with 34.

2. Wilson is the only QB with at least 30 touchdown passes in each of the past two seasons.

2a. He has done it for four straight seasons.

3. Among QBs over the past four seasons, only Lamar Jackson and Cam Newton have more rushing yards than Wilson.

4. He has never missed a game in his NFL career.

5. The last season Wilson didn't finish as a top-10 fantasy QB in total points, Mark Sanchez, Josh Freeman and Tim Tebow were all starting QBs in the NFL.

6. Over the past four seasons, Wilson is first among QBs in total points and fourth in points per game.

6a. He is being drafted as QB7.

7. In Week 7 of the 2019 season, Ryan Tannehill was named the starting quarterback for the Tennessee Titans. Since that time, he has:

8. The fourth most games with at least 25 fantasy points.

9. The third most passing touchdowns.

10. ... and the second most total touchdowns (tied with Josh Allen).

11. Since that time, he is averaging 21.7 points per game.

12. That is 0.6 fewer points per game than Allen and 0.9 fewer points per game than Mahomes.

13. Since becoming the starter, he is the fourth-best QB in fantasy in total points.

14. His team added Julio Jones this offseason.

15. Tannehill is being drafted as QB10.

16. In Week 14 of last season, Jalen Hurts started his first of four straight games as QB for the Philadelphia Eagles.

17. The wide receivers with the most routes run during that four-game stretch were rookie Jalen Reagor, who played his eighth career NFL game in Week 14, and former college quarterback Greg Ward, who in 2019 played wide receiver for the San Antonio Commanders of the now-defunct AAF.

18. It would be the final four games of Doug Pederson's tenure as head coach of the Eagles.

19. Hurts threw for 919 yards on 133 attempts, ran for 272 yards and scored 10.3 points per game with his legs alone.

20. He averaged 23.0 total points per game.

20a. Last season, 23 points per game would have been QB7.

21. Those numbers prorated over a 16-game season would be 532 pass attempts and 164.8 fantasy points with his legs.

22. Last season, there were only five quarterbacks to throw at least 400 passes and score at least 60 points with their legs.

23. Those five quarterbacks were Allen (QB2), Kyler Murray (QB4), Deshaun Watson (QB5), Wilson (QB6) and Tannehill (QB9).

23a. Hurts is going in the 11th round in ESPN leagues.

Sure, Jalen Hurts still has plenty of room to grow as an NFL quarterback, but he put up impressive fantasy numbers in his four late-season starts as a rookie. Mitchell Leff/Getty Images
24. Fifteen times over the past three seasons, Ryan Fitzpatrick has thrown at least 35 passes in a game.

25. In those games, he has averaged 313 passing yards and 21.7 fantasy points.

26. That 21.7 mark would have been good enough to be a top-10 QB last season, just 0.8 points lower than QB6, Wilson.

27. Last season, Washington's starting quarterbacks were current Steelers backup Dwayne Haskins, current Washington backup Kyle Allen and current ESPN analyst Alex Smith.

28. With that trio under center, Washington still attempted 37.6 passes per game, ninth most in the NFL.

29. Last season, Fitzpatrick led all qualified quarterbacks in completion percentage on deep passes.

30. This offseason, Washington added Curtis Samuel (4.31 40 time) and drafted Dyami Brown (4.46) to go along with Terry McLaurin (4.35), Antonio Gibson (4.39) and 6-foot-6, 250-pound Logan Thomas (4.61).

31. Fitzpatrick is going undrafted in more than 80% of ESPN leagues.

32. Last season, seven of the top 10 QBs had at least 15% of their fantasy points come from rushing.

33. In his lone full college season, Trey Lance rushed for 1,100 yards and 14 TDs.

34. Since 2019, the 49ers are tied for third in rushing touchdowns, fifth in rushing attempts and sixth in rushing yards.

35. Over the past three seasons, Jimmy Garoppolo has missed 23 games.

36. Lance's current ESPN ADP is 157.7 (QB19).

37. Since the beginning of 2019, 31 running backs have at least 300 touches.

38. Of those 31 qualified backs, Christian McCaffrey is third with 1.17 fantasy points per touch.

39. Alvin Kamara is second in fantasy points per touch, at 1.20.

40. And first, with 1.21 fantasy points per touch, is Austin Ekeler.

41. In his nine healthy games last season, Ekeler averaged 18.6 touches per game.

42. Over a 16-game season, that equals out to 297.6 total touches.

43. Last season, Ezekiel Elliott had 296 total touches, fifth most in the NFL.

44. Once he came back from injury last season, from Week 12 on, playing with Justin Herbert, no running back had a higher target share than Ekeler's 19.9%.

45. Last season, Ekeler scored only three touchdowns.

46. In 2019, he scored 11 touchdowns.

46a. He makes Mike Clay's list of players expected to score more touchdowns this season.

47. From 2011 to 2019, only three times did a running back have at least three runs of 70-plus yards in one season.

48. Those running backs were Adrian Peterson, Jamaal Charles and Chris Johnson, all in 2012.

49. None of them repeated it the next year or ever again.

50. Last season, Miles Sanders had three runs of 70-plus yards.
 

Shanemansj13

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51. Remove those runs and last season Sanders was 41st among running backs in fantasy points per touch.

52. Sanders has never had a game with more than 20 carries in his two-year career.

53. He did, however, have three games last season with 10 or fewer total touches.

54. To put that another way, Sanders played only 12 games last season. In 25% of them, he had 10 or fewer touches.

55. New Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni was the offensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts from 2018 to '20.

56. In none of those three seasons did a single RB play more than 50% of the Colts' snaps.

57. In all three seasons, multiple running backs played at least 30% of the snaps.

58. In all three seasons, a third Colts RB played more than 15% of the team's snaps.

59. Last season, no running back with at least 50 targets had a lower catch rate than Sanders' 52.8%.

Miles Sanders has big-play potential, but his usage hasn't been as consistent as you might like from a running back with his ADP. Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire
60. This year, the Las Vegas Raiders signed Kenyan Drake to a lucrative two-year, $14.5 million dollar contract.

61. For his career, in games in which Josh Jacobs has had fewer than 15 touches, he has never had 10 or more fantasy points.

62. For his career, in the 16 games with fewer than 20 touches, Jacobs averages 10.5 fantasy points per game.

62a. Twenty touches a game is ... a lot.

63. Last season, 10.5 fantasy points per game was lower than RB31 Rex Burkhead's 10.8 points per game.

64. Last season, among RBs with 100-plus touches, Jacobs ranked 46th in fantasy points per touch. Forty-sixth.

64a. Same category, same qualifier, RB43 was Kalen Ballage.

64b. RB44 was Brian Hill.

64c. RB45 was Devontae Booker.

64d. Booker, Hill and Ballage are all backups this year for their respective NFL teams.

65. This offseason, the Raiders lost starters Rodney Hudson, Gabe Jackson and Trent Brown from their offensive line.

66. Last season, Jacobs' yards per carry after contact fell by more than 22%.

67. For his career, he averages 1.8 receptions per game.

68. Over the past five years, the New England Patriots have had the NFL's second-highest red zone rush rate.

69. Last season, the Patriots led the NFL in red zone rush percentage.

70. Last season, the Patriots had 53 goal-to-go carries.

71. Of those 53 carries, 49 of them went to Cam Newton, Rex Burkhead, Sony Michel and Damien Harris.

72. Newton (free agent), Burkhead (Texans) and Michel (Rams) are no longer on the Patriots.

73. Last season, teams that were trailing threw the ball 68% of the time.

74. Most sportsbooks have the over/under for Detroit Lions wins this year between 4.5 and 5 wins.

75. Over the past two years, no running back has caught a higher percentage of his targets than new Detroit Lions RB Jamaal Williams.

76. From 2017 to '20, the Chargers, under head coach Anthony Lynn, had the third-highest RB target share in the NFL.

77. From 2017 to '20, the Chargers, under head coach Anthony Lynn, had the second-most RB receptions in the NFL.

77a. Lynn is now the offensive coordinator for the Detroit Lions.

78. In his seven games last season with at least 10 touches, Jamaal Williams averaged 13.1 points per game, which would have been RB25 on a points-per-game basis.

79. Last season for the Lions, Kerryon Johnson and Adrian Peterson combined for 231 touches.

79a. Neither is on the team this year.

79b. Jamaal Williams is currently being drafted as RB41 on ESPN.

80. Last season, Cooper Kupp averaged 13.9 fantasy points per game and finished as WR30 on a per-game basis.

81. Since 2015, here are some of the rookie receivers who averaged fewer than 13.9 points per game in their first season: Terry McLaurin, CeeDee Lamb, A.J. Brown and Tyreek Hill.

82. Ja'Marr Chase is being drafted as a borderline top-30 wide receiver on ESPN.

83. In Weeks 1-11 last season, with a healthy Joe Burrow under center, Tyler Boyd was WR14 on a per-game basis.

84. In Weeks 1-11 last season, Ja'Marr Chase, in college, was WR ... nothing. He didn't play football last season.

85. Since the start of 2018, Tyler Boyd is WR18 in total points.

86. Boyd is currently going as WR36 on ESPN, often multiple rounds after Chase.

86a. What are we doing here, people? Seriously.

87. Since 2015, among wide receivers, Brandin Cooks ranks fifth in receiving yards, tied for 11th in receiving scores and eighth in total fantasy points.

88. Since 2015, Cooks has missed a total of three regular-season games.

89. Last season, his first in Houston, Cooks was WR17.

90. Last season, William Fuller V, Randall Cobb, Keke Coutee, Darren Fells, Chad Hansen, Kenny Stills, Steven Mitchell, Kahale Warring and Deandre Carter combined for 254 targets.

90a. None of them are on the Texans' 53-man roster as of Sept. 1, 2021.

91. Last season, Cooks had 10 games with at least seven targets. In those 10 games, he averaged 19.7 fantasy points.

92. Last season, 19.7 fantasy points per game would have been WR4, just ahead of Calvin Ridley.

93. Cooks is currently going as WR33, in the 10th round, in ESPN leagues.

93a. I mean, honestly people. COME ON.


94. Last season, only three tight ends had more red zone targets than Logan Thomas.

95. Last season, only two tight ends had more games of double-digit fantasy points than Thomas' 10.

96. Last season, only one tight end (Darren Waller) ran a route on a higher percentage of his team's dropbacks than Thomas' 82.2%.

97. And last season, no tight end ran more overall routes than Thomas.

97A. And he did all that with quarterbacks Dwayne Haskins, Kyle Allen and Alex Smith.

98. This offseason, Washington upgraded at quarterback and gave Thomas a three-year, $24 million extension.

99. Last season, Thomas was the third-best TE in fantasy.

100. This year, he is being drafted as TE7, in the eighth round.
 

dtgold88

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Berry just needed a nudge from me.
But seriously, his column is 2 months late.
something else I think he really points out is so many FFL "managers" pick based on name and not production...or expected production.
 

averagejoe

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something else I think he really points out is so many FFL "managers" pick based on name and not production...or expected production.
I would agree.
Many fantasy owners buy into the off-season hype. Or they pick familiar names.
Look at Tim Tebow. Never really did much in the NFL. But the name - "TEBOW!"
He gets signed to play TE and he is one of the most "added" players in dynasty leagues.
Doesn't even make it through camp.

On the other side of the coin, I see the perspective.
Shiny new toy parked in the garage.
NFL teams can't wait to show it off, right?
This might be the mentality and it makes sense. It's logical.

But it can be a crapshoot to gauge.
Most rookies don't do squat (unless they're a first-round RB).
Players who change teams don't always make a splash either (in that they fall below expectations).

The one thing I learned is that you need insurance on your bench.
If you fill your bench with sleepers and hyped players, then you have a bench of "potential" only.
Draft only a couple of these guys tops.
As Berry pointed out, you do need guys who may not be flashy, yet can still be consistent fantasy contributors.
Sadly, most fantasy owners swing for the fences.
 

dtgold88

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I would agree.
Many fantasy owners buy into the off-season hype. Or they pick familiar names.
Look at Tim Tebow. Never really did much in the NFL. But the name - "TEBOW!"
He gets signed to play TE and he is one of the most "added" players in dynasty leagues.
Doesn't even make it through camp.

On the other side of the coin, I see the perspective.
Shiny new toy parked in the garage.
NFL teams can't wait to show it off, right?
This might be the mentality and it makes sense. It's logical.

But it can be a crapshoot to gauge.
Most rookies don't do squat (unless they're a first-round RB).
Players who change teams don't always make a splash either (in that they fall below expectations).

The one thing I learned is that you need insurance on your bench.
If you fill your bench with sleepers and hyped players, then you have a bench of "potential" only.
Draft only a couple of these guys tops.
As Berry pointed out, you do need guys who may not be flashy, yet can still be consistent fantasy contributors.
Sadly, most fantasy owners swing for the fences.
Correct......My thought was mostly along the lines of I'm sure there will be guys who will take Julio or OBJ over more productive lesser known WRs.
 

averagejoe

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Correct......My thought was mostly along the lines of I'm sure there will be guys who will take Julio or OBJ over more productive lesser known WRs.
OBJ is tempting tho.
He can be productive.
His problem is only playing all 16 games in just 2 of his 7 seasons.
 

Shanemansj13

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Berry just needed a nudge from me.
But seriously, his column is 2 months late.
No kidding but in his defense he has to find some time in between banging all those supermodels
 
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