Archive for Player Analysis

Running Back Depth Chart: Has Christine Michael Risen To The Top For Seattle?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Would anyone have expected the Seahawks Christine Michael to enter the 2016 campaign as a viable fantasy selection?  Maybe we weren’t taking him seriously for a week or two, but with Thomas Rawls sidelined he’s taken the bull by the horns and entrenched himself as an important piece of the offense.  How important?  Let’s take a look at the performances from yesterday’s third preseason game and the outlook of the backfield:

 

Thomas Rawls
Did Not Play

On Wednesday Liz Mathews of 710 ESPN tweeted:

RB Thomas Rawls will NOT play in tomorrow’s game but Carroll said he has “no hesitation saying he will play in season opener.” Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Is Eddie Lacy Really Primed For A Renaissance In 2016?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There were high expectations entering 2015, but the Packers Eddie Lacy proved to be among fantasy footballs biggest disappointments. Instead of being a workhorse he shared the backfield, taking 187 carries for 758 yards and 3 TD. Twelve months later we are all justified in being skeptical, but over the first two preseason games there are signs that the old Lacy is back:

  • Game 1 – 4 carries for 24 yards
  • Game 2 – 9 carries for 45 yards and 1 TD

That’s 13 carries for 69 yards, good for 5.3 yards per carry. Obviously it’s only preseason and the level of competition has to be taken into account, but considering all the talk hovering over him it’s also something we simply can’t ignore. Read more

Why Demaryius Thomas Is A Must Buy In The Third Round

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

No one would’ve questioned the Broncos’ Demaryius Thomas as a Top 10 wide receiver a year ago (and chances are he was ranked higher than that). This season he currently goes at an average ADP of 31.6, placing him as the 16th wide receiver coming off the board.

Yes Peyton Manning has retired…
Yes he will likely see a downgrade at quarterback…

Of course we are still talking about a wide receiver who racked up 105 receptions for 1,304 yards last season. Did he “disappoint”? With 6 TD the case could be made, though the other numbers make it a hard sell.

Let’s not forget he has posted 90+ receptions and 1,300+ yards for four straight seasons. While the QB play is going to be questionable, you could make the argument that it was nothing special last season either. The receptions and the yardage were there, and there is little reason to think that it will suddenly disappear. Read more

Will 2016 Mark The Breakouts Of Giovani Bernard & Duke Johnson?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Sometimes it’s hard to determine whether or not we want to buy into the hype surrounding certain players.  Maybe we’ve been waiting for them to put it together or maybe there isn’t clarity to their role.  Will the touches increase?  Are they more of a PPR darling?  The same question hangs over a pair of potentially intriguing running backs, so let’s take a look as we try to determine their potential ’16 value:

 

Giovani Bernard – Cincinnati Bengals
Current Average ADP – 82.2

Fantasy owners have been waiting for Bernard to step up and become a Top 20 running back, but it simply hasn’t happened.  Instead the Bengals continue to force him to share time with Jeremy Hill, allowing him to run the ball at times and certainly catch the football:

  • Rushing – 154 carries for 730 yards and 2 TD
  • Receiving – 49 receptions for 472 yards and 0 TD Read more

Top 5 Rookie Quarterbacks For 2016 (Will Anyone Besides Jared Goff Make An Impact?)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

In reality we all know that there’s only one rookie quarterback who has an opportunity to make a significant impact in 2016.  That doesn’t mean we won’t see any others, but aside from Jared Goff the rest of the field will hold little appeal on draft day (at least for those in redraft formats).  With that in mind, let’s take a look at how the rookies currently rank:

1) Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams
Regardless if he’s currently listed as #1 or #2 on the depth chart, there’s little question that Goff is going to be the Rams’ starter for Week 1.  Do we really think they’d use Case Keenum over the first overall pick in the NFL Draft?  In this day and age, given the money spent, when you are selected atop the draft you are expected to immediately be installed as the team’s starter.

Goff certainly showed the potential to thrive while at Cal, including completing 64.5% of his passes in his final season (60+% in all three years he played) to go along with 43 TD (78 over the past two seasons) and 13 INT.  He will have Todd Gurley helping to keep defenses honest, though his overall upside would look a lot better if he had more weapons to throw the football too.  While he’s the “top” rookie, it’s far more likely he falls short of being anything more than a QB2 this season. Read more

Preseason Week 1 Fallout: Is Trevor Siemian Making A Play For The Starting Role?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

With Brock Osweiler spurning the team this offseason, the Broncos are headed to a bit of a quarterback controversy (at least in the short-term). They answered the question as to who the long-term answer was, at least they hope, when they traded into the first round to select Paxton Lynch. Could he also be the answer in 2016? Will it be Mark Sanchez or Trevor Siemian? Let’s take a look at their performances in the first preseason game:

 

Mark Sanchez
10-13, 99 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT

He got the start and was solid, including a TD pass to Demaryius Thomas. However we can’t ignore the interception either, considering his career marks of 86 TD vs. 84 INT. A team like the Broncos want someone who is not only going to make plays, but also not beat themselves. If Sanchez can’t avoid coughing up the football, the decision on who starts becomes a bit of an easier one. Read more

Fantasy Fallout: With Dorial Green-Beckham Gone, Is There Any Potential In Tennessee’s Receivers?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

It would’ve been easy to argue that Dorial Green-Beckham had the highest upside of any Tennessee wide receiver, but he consistently fell into the coaching staff’s dog house. Ultimately it led to yesterday’s surprising trade to Philadelphia, where he will have to learn a new offense and adjust to a new quarterback. While that doesn’t mean he should be written off completely, for 2016 it’s hard to think he’s going to make a significant impact.

The next question is what that leaves in Tennessee. It’s clear that they are going to be a run oriented offense, behind DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, but they have to throw the ball some time. Yes they still have a talented tight end in Delanie Walker and a slew of mediocre veterans like Andre Johnson and Harry Douglas (plus Kendall Wright and Justin Hunter remain). It’s the two names currently sitting atop the depth chart, though, that bring the most intrigue:

 

Rishard Matthews
We will be taking an in depth look at him shortly, but he’s definitely not a receiver to overlook. Here’s an excerpt from that article: Read more

Preseason Fallout: Could An Alternative Starting Running Back Emerge In Baltimore?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Baltimore Ravens opted to give many of their veterans the first preseason game off, giving them an opportunity to take a good look at their younger players. Among those who sat out were Justin Forsett, who was limited to just 10 games and 151 carries a year ago. While he’s still the favorite to open the season as the “lead” rusher, it’s no guarantee. Let’s take a look at how the others performed and see if anyone is primed to push him for early down carries:

 

Javorius Allen
6 carries, 6 yards, 0 TD
1 reception, 19 yards, 1 TD

The reception saved his performance, especially given the depth that has been created. Of course it doesn’t guarantee him anything, outside of maybe making the roster, depending on how the roles develop. Read more

Looking Into the Numbers: New England Patriots Edition (Jimmy Garoppolo’s Cameo & More)

by Ray Kuhn

Fantasy football ultimately is all about the numbers, though the NFL itself is about significantly more than that. That said we have come a long way in the past few years when it comes to equating numbers and statistics to what we see on the field and helping to predict and explain both past and future performance. As we inch closer to the kickoff of another NFL season, we’ll take a trip through the league and look at two statistics for each team and what it means from a fantasy perspective.

Today let’s take a look at the New England Patriots:

20: The Number of Completions Jimmy Garoppolo Has in His Career

Let’s just start by eliminating any doubt, Tom Brady is New England’s quarterback. Once he serves his time he will be under center for the Patriots and Garoppolo will be back to the bench with four games of experience under his belt.

To say that Garoppolo doesn’t have a track record in the NFL would be an understatement, but he is New England’s best and only option. While the reports are positive thus far coming out of Patriots’ camp, I obviously wouldn’t expect to hear anything to the contrary. Read more

PPR Breakout Candidate: Why The Colts’ Josh Ferguson Needs To Be On Radars

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Being listed at 5’9″ likely had a lot to do with Illinois’ Josh Ferguson going undrafted this year. There could quickly be numerous teams disappointed with their decision to pass over him, however, as the rest of the league’s oversight could quickly become the Colts’ gain.

First of all, just look at the depth chart ahead of him. Frank Gore is the “leader”, though at 33-years old it’s fair to wonder when the gas tank will hit empty (and also how much the team will limit him in an effort to keep him healthy). Jordan Todman and Robert Turbin? Neither have proven anything in the NFL and are easy to imagine being passed over in favor of the explosive rookie.

Just look at how NFL.com described him prior to the draft, comparing him to Ronnie Hillman: Read more