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Bye: Bengals, Patriots, Jets, Ravens
We get a little bit of a break with the byes this week, at least related to top players. Those rostering Joe Burrow, Joe Mixon and Lamar Jackson may disagree.
Joe Mixon’s HUGE day had many of us, I’m sure, racing out to our live scoring apps in hope we didn’t square off against him. As it turns out, I only had one team going against Mixon in 15 leagues, that was rather fortunate. As it turns out, I almost won that game (more info under Team Tracking) if not for garbage time points. I also pulled off a huge trade on a team I finally decided to turn the lights out on and begin a rebuild. More on that later.
Just some quick notes regarding a few players and thoughts I had as I watched our favorite past time on Sunday:
- Justin Fields is coming into his own. I’d like to see less running to help keep him healthy but he seems smart about it at least. Get the man more playmakers next year please!
- Austin Ekeler is good at football. On a rebuilding team, I’d actually be inclined to hold him unless I got a great offer. He still has a couple of years of great production left and it’s okay if those aging heavy workload runners retire off your roster. Ekeler and Derrick Henry will do just that for me I think.
- D’Andre Swift is starting to drop in dynasty. The Lions are just cursed when it comes to running backs. Can he get, and stay, healthy?
- I don’t think I’ve seen a city turn on their quarterback, who is still in town, like I have with Green Bay and Aaron Rodgers. That said, he makes it easy.
- I still want nothing to do with any New England players. Rhamondre Stevenson looks good, but I’m sure they’ll kill his value at some point.
- Zach Wilson is not the reason the Jets are 6-3 in my mind. I have him in a couple leagues and remain concerned
- Terry McLaurin is a better receiver than his production but that may not matter. I only own him in one league and am looking to move on.
- Geno Smith has proven everyone wrong. Problem is, the Seahawks are still going to address the position and Smith may be a lame duck.
- RIP Tom Brady and Matthew Stafford. I wouldn’t have ever thought these two would fall off the cliff, especially Stafford and the Rams. I continue to steer clear of any running back in the Rams backfield unless I already roster them.
- Patrick Mahomes IS that good.
Remember, bad things can happen to good teams. Keep your wits about you, avoid knee-jerk reactions and don’t get “cute” with your lineup decisions.
2022 Team Tracking
Just as a refresher, in 2021 I sent 40% of tracked dynasty teams to championship games. While I’d love to say it was all due to my management, luck still plays a huge role in our favorite hobby and I don’t see a repeat of 2021. That doesn’t mean I’m not gunning for 100%, however. In 2022 I added three new leagues to be tracked, bringing my total to 13.
I’m one of those coaches who is always looking at, not only the current week matchups, but future weeks as well to determine who I’m facing during tough bye weeks and in hopes of facing tougher competition on their bad bye weeks. This year is yielding disappointing results, not so much about my bye weeks but because those I’m facing aren’t missing significant players in most cases. So I guess I’m going to have to truly earn my victories. When looking at my subpar week seven record (6-7), there just wasn’t much I could do to change the results. I did cost myself a win with a poor star/sit decision but not significant enough to change my thinking. Sometimes it helps to look at your losses, get inside them and find there’s just not much you could do. You just got beat. It may be because of injury, bye, coaching decision or any other number of reasons outside of your control. Looking forward to week eight, I was more concerned because I had Patrick Mahomes across many of my competitive teams and losing him is a big loss. I don’t like having a poor week and then seeing Mahomes on bye to follow. Two bad weeks in a row finds me considering fantasy cricket instead. Is that a thing?
Happy to have week nine behind me as it was one of my worst bye weeks, arguably worse than week seven. But now it’s relatively clear sailing for all 13 of my tracked teams. As bad as I thought this week was going to be, with four minutes to go in the Monday night blowout affair, I was looking at 9-4, including a big win against my only opponent staring Joe Mixon against me. But, this week my mantra is now: I hate garbage time.
One play in particular gutted me. I had the Ravens defense going in multiple games and was up against N.O. Kicker Will Lutz and Juwan Johnson, who had all of one reception for 56 minutes of the game. With 4:00 minutes remaining, Andy Dalton hits Johnson, who stays in bounds, for a 41 touchdown. That touchdown beat me outright in three games. Johnson’s touchdown lifted one opponent over me, the extra seven points against the BAL defense lower their score enough for me to lose against the team which had Joe Mixon and the Will Lutz extra point took me down in a third league. One play, three losses. To make matters worse, all I needed was for Kamara to get one reception or six rushing yards on one of the Saints final two drives, which included the Johnson touchdown. Instead, I took a .54 loss. Brutal.
But that’s why we love fantasy football, right?
In the end, I was 7-6 on the week, bringing my total to 71-46 overall through nine weeks. Passable. Most of my teams are in good playoff shape though many of the races are very close so I’ll need to finish strong. Having the bye weeks mostly behind me should help.
This is what I posted in week one:
Starting in 2021, I began a process of a mindful strategy shift, prioritizing young WR1 players as my core and mid-career veteran receivers as my production anchors with a corresponding RB-light approach as I like to call it. While I haven’t updated my numbers-based research to prove out this strategy shift, it has been clear to me that the increased RBBC (running back by committee) usage continues to sap production from the position and when combined with injury potential, makes for a very high beta (risk) in your weekly lineup and long-term build. You just won’t see WR1 players play 50% of a team’s offensive snaps while rotating with the second player on the positional depth chart. It’s the WR3s and WR4s where the greatest rotations take place.
I have three teams either out of it or on the ropes. Quite honestly, there was little I could do in two of them and I decided to pull the trigger on a big trade to start the rebuild and, hopefully, not win another game this year. More on that team and a big trade in a second. In the second league, a shallow (21) roster format, this orphan adoption rebuild was starting to play well until I lost Breece Hall, Ja’Marr Chase, Treylon Burks, John Metchie, Irv Smith, David Njoku while enduring poor play from DeVonta Smith and Najee Harris. In week nine, I could barely field a team. Somehow I’m still second in the division at 4-5, but I don’t expect I’ll win more than one additional game. That brings me to my third poor team, due to injury. Somehow this team keeps punching above its weight and is 6-3. I’ve lost Marquise Brown and Breece Hall and, for all intents and purposes, Cam Akers. I look at the roster and wonder how these scrubs keep posting. Chalk it up to Patrick Mahomes.
Circling back on the big trade. This particular team got away from me over the past two years and doesn’t look terrible with Austin Ekeler, Miles Sanders and D’Andre Swift at running back. But lack of veteran receiver production and a second quarterback (superflex) after Josh Allen has cost me many games. I finally decided to have some fun seeing as how I was sitting at 3-5 with no real change in prospects going forward. I decided to float Josh Allen in trade and ultimately finalized this trade (after a couple of rounds of discussion and modification):
Josh Allen, QB
2023 1st Round Pick (currently 1.01)
2023 1st Round Pick (currently 1.05)
Miles Sanders, RB
Juju Smith-Schuster, WR
Terrace Marshall, WR
Baker Mayfield, QB
My 2023 first round pick is currently sitting as 1.04 and now has every chance to get better. I really didn’t expect to trade Allen, but sometimes you receiver an offer that is just too good to pass up. I’ll be having a lot of fun in next year’s draft, though with only Baker Mayfield and Zach Wilson at quarterback, I’m going to have to spend a high pick or two to restock the position. The addition of veterans Sanders and Smith-Schuster, immediately secures my RB/WR group into 2023, with upside names Terrace Marshall, Alec Pierce, Josh Palmer and Jameson Williams as additional young players. Loss of Allen’s production will hurt but I like my chances to rebuild quickly.
Good luck this week.
Join our Discord Server
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Lineup Advice Rules & Format
DLF continues to see amazing growth in our membership and each year I wonder how I’m going to keep up with all of your questions while also holding to a level of service and quality you’ve all come to expect from me. I’ve been VERY happy with my level of accuracy but, for that to occur, I need your help. Each question can take up to 10 minutes for me to research as I research up to a dozen different variables and trends. I do everything I can to get my answers correct. For that reason, I need you to read the following rules and guidelines to help me maintain efficiency:
- Please don’t ask me to set your entire lineup
- Put “TNF” as the top line for any question involving Thursday Night Football games
- Please also make sure to tell me who YOU would be starting if not for my advice. It helps me to understand your gut feeling.
- Include your scoring format (PPR, Non-PPR, etc.)
- Keep your questions as brief as possible – Story questions add a lot of time
- I prioritize questions involving the earliest (Thursday, etc.) games first. If I skip over your question, don’t worry, I’ll be back to it.
- It’s easy to miss responses to my responses in thread. When in doubt, always post a separate new question
Lastly, I work very hard to get my advice correct and I do not mail it in. When I’m wrong, I feel every incorrect answer so, go easy on me! That said, the DLF community has been absolutely fantastic to work with which is why I’m still doing this after so many years.
Have a great week! Have an even better season!
Let’s do this…
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