Twitter has been an amazing tool for fantasy sports enthusiasts. It’s paramount when getting information quicker than your competition and is the only place in town where you can go from talking fantasy football to talking about “Saved By The Bell” within four tweets. Twitter is also where I found my love for writing. I would have never started this unique journey had it not been for Twitter- so blame them when you read my work.
I posed the following question to my Twitter followers this week: “Who are your biggest concerns going into the 2013 fantasy football season?” I’ve never asked questions like that on Twitter, but thought why not? The results varied and responses were all across the board. As I previously stated, Twitter is such an invaluable tool, especially for fantasy sports, that it seems like I should be asking these types of questions more frequently.
That got me thinking.
For this series, I decided to take some of the most popular questions floating around Twitter and post my own viewpoints on them here on DLF. Remember, if you have specific questions, Tim Stafford answers all the mailbag questions for DLF and he’s an excellent source for information that can help you in your decision making this “off-season.”
@kdiddy8837 asks: What’s your take on Golden Tate’s emergence this year?
I admittedly may have selected this question because I’m a huge Seahawks fan and have been taking him in dynasty mock drafts everywhere I can. I think Tate is a definite buy right now because his price is cheap and he’ll turn 25 just before the 2013 season kicks off, which should propel him to many years of fantasy goodness.
Tate’s emergence on the National scene came during week two of the regular season when his game-winning touchdown “catch” turned the Twitter machine on end. It was the play that would later be infamously known as the “Fail Mary.” In that game, he had two touchdowns and one million mentions – which in turn, made him fantasy relevant.
Tate put together career-bests in yards, touchdowns and receptions- he also had his first two 100 yard games of his career in Week 17, then again in the NFC Divisional playoff round. He ended the regular season with 45 receptions, 688 yards, seven touchdowns and was ranked as the WR33 in standard leagues.
Per PFF Signature Stats, Tate was targeted just 65 times this season but caught nearly 70% of those targets. When Russell Wilson threw to Tate, he had a quarterback rating of 133.0 – good for second best at the position, trailing only the Danario Alexander and Philip Rivers duo (134.1). Tate also averaged 6.1 YAC (yards after catch) which was #15 at the position.
Wilson really came into his own during the second half of the season, using both his arm and his legs to carry fantasy teams on his back. With his ability to escape pocket pressure and keep plays alive lends a helpful hand to players like Tate. He’s a player who knows how to get open and is smart enough (now) to know when Wilson breaks the pocket to break his route toward his quarterback. Whenever the ball is in Tate’s hands, he has a chance to make a big play- hence his Twitter handle, @ShowtimeTate.
Wilson and Tate will continue to improve with a full off-season together and Darrell Bevel back as the offensive coordinator. As long as the Seahawk offense continues to develop and gel like they did the second half of the season, I see Tate as a solid WR3 option with the occasional WR2 upside.
As it stands now, per DLF writer Ryan McDowell’s dynasty mock drafts, Golden Tate is being taken as the WR51 with an ADP of 129.
The fact he’s seen as a WR4 by the fantasy world should give you the incentive of trading for the former Notre Dame product now. He and the entire Seahawk offense are on the rise- get him now before your league mates realize how good they are too.
@zach_law asks: In a keeper league, RGIII or Kaepernick?
With Colin Kaepernick’s recent success, I think this will be a question many fantasy football owners will be faced with. While it’s not a full-fledged “dynasty” question, the assessment of “who has more value” will be critical when deciding on who to keep or who to trade.
Starting with the ADPs of both in DLF’s recent dynasty a mock drafts, Robert Griffin III is being selected as the second overall quarterback with an ADP of 14.17. Kaepernick is being drafted as the ninth overall quarterback with an ADP of 64.33. Kaepernick’s ADP is sure to ascend from here, but it’s obvious that dynasty mockers are not afraid of Griffin’s recent ACL injury.
The two quarterbacks are very similar in terms of how they play- they both run comparable zone-read option offenses, both have big arms, and both are gazelles in the open field. Kaepernick stands at 6’5”/233 pounds, while RGIII is 6’2”/223 pounds, but from my eye test, it seems Kaepernick is much bigger- dude is a tank underneath the ridiculous tattooed writings.
The one knock I have on RGIII is his ability to stay healthy for an entire season, and if so, how many seasons? The way in which he plays is something I looked forward to being witness to every Sunday, but with the latest knee injury, I have concerns his body-type can stand up to the punishment the NFL delivers on a weekly basis. Back in 2009, RGIII tore the same ACL that cost him the remainder of the season. Three years later, the same knee shredded and his outlook for the start 2013 is in doubt.
We’ve seen superstar players come back from this sort of injury – Adrian Peterson and Jamaal Charles being the most recent. The difference here is that they came back after their first knee surgery. Who knows how RGIII’s knee will hold up now? Not even Dr. James Andrews can say with any certainty as it stands now.
Kaepernick, on the other hand, has never had such a major injury, and that’s with running the ball 600 times during his college days with Nevada.
Looking at a pure stats point of view (playoffs included), the two are amazingly equal. Kaepernick, in his starts, has passed for an average of 222.1 yards/1.3 touchdowns per game. RGIII has passed for 204 yards/1.4 touchdowns per game. In terms of rushing, Kaepernick has rushed for a total of 617 yards and seven touchdowns, while RGIII amassed 847 yards and seven touchdowns. Keep in mind Kaep’s first eight games were in limited duty.
Overall, if you take these numbers into account in terms of fantasy value, Kaepernick averages out to 21.6 points per game and RGIII at 21.4, so it’s a push.
Because these two are so similar, I have to go with the guy who I think has a better chance of surviving a full season on a year to year basis, and that’s Colin Kaepernick.
On a side note, I love RGIII and what he can bring to the NFL and your fantasy teams. I think he has the higher ceiling of the two, but your consistent points may come from Kaepernick.
The truth is, whoever of the two you have set as your QB1, you have a leg up on almost all the rest of the competition.
Thanks to all those who partook in my Twitterpoll and perhaps I’ll get to your questions in the coming weeks.