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Monday, December 31, 2018

2019 FANTASY FOOTBALL QB POSTSCRIPT

With the 2018 fantasy football season in the books, now is the time to check in on all of the positions with a look towards 2019.  Today we begin with the QB's where the offensive numbers were truly insane and were led by 50 touchdown throws.  With most leagues correctly operating with just one QB in their starting lineups, here are some tidbits from yours truly with a look towards next season.

-First off, every single one of us will have a strong temptation to draft Mahomes in Round 1 and especially in Round 2.  The numbers were absolutely insane throughout the 2018 season and it is likely he was on more league champions than any other player (he was on the runner-up squad in our Experts League).  While the allure is there, I will suggest not going down that road as it is still a very dumb idea going QB in Round 1 or 2 when everyone else is stocking up on the supreme running backs and wideouts.  You will really be putting yourself behind the rest of your league using such a strategy and since the depth at QB is so deep in going about 14-15 players deep in terms of starting-caliber guys, it makes it double a bad choice to tab Mahomes.  Those in your league who get a Christian McCaffrey in Round 1 and then a JuJu Smith-Schuster in Round 2 can easily get a Philip Rivers, Matt Ryan, Baker Mayfield, or a Carson Wentz in the middle rounds are in so much better shape than those who go Mahomes in Round 1 and then go a shaky back like a David Johnson on Round 2.  So while we all would love to have Mahomes, it still is not a good idea to go a passer early on no matter who it is. 

-Once again, I will be all over value at QB as I historically have done but I will admit to breaking my own rule this past summer when I took Aaron Rodgers at the start of Round 3.  While it was not the first two rounds, I really hurt myself in terms of not stocking up more on backs and wideouts and then sat back and saw those who took Ryan, Rivers,Mayfield, Mitch Trubisky, and Jared Goff all end up with monster values.  I will not make that mistake again. 

Now in terms of 2019, guys who should come nicely priced and who could pay off significantly include once again Ryan and Rivers; not to mention Carson Wentz who is coming off a second straight season where he failed to finish the year on the field.  While Wentz' injury woes are becoming a major concerns, he remains a supremely talented passer when on the field and I will take a shot here and back him up with a Trubisky or a much more affordable Jimmy Garoppolo to be safe.

Another guy I love for 2019 in terms of upside/price if Mayfield who just set the rookie TD passing record with 27.  Mayfield has the "it" factor that will make him a stud for years and the fact the Browns already trust him to air it out is a major bonus to his value.  Sign me up. 

-Guys who will likely be past my price point next season figure to be Mahomes, Drew Brees, Andrew Luck, DeShaun Watson, Rodgers, and Russell Wilson.  A few things here:  I already did a separate post about the December fades Brees has had each of the last two years and his ongoing struggles on the road now make this old favorite of mine someone I will gladly pass on.  Wilson is also concerning in that he threw at a drastically lowered rate in 2018 as the Seahawks ran the ball like in the old Marshawn Lynch days.  So while Wilson was excellent with his 35 passing scores, his margin for error was very low each week given the low amount of overall throws.  Finally, Rodgers dealt with groin and knee injuries last season and also another concussion for a guy who has had a history of them.  Rodgers is squarely on the back nine of his career now and outside of Davante Adams, is lacking in weaponry.  He has never been with more question marks than he is now coming off a somewhat rough 2018 campaign. 


Saturday, December 29, 2018

2019 FANTASY FOOTBALL INITIAL TOP 24 PPR LOOK

Yes we haven't even put the 2018 fantasy football season to bed for those who have games scheduled for Week 17 but this is how we view the top 24 overall players for 2019 PPR leagues.

1.  Todd Gurley
2.  Saquon Barkley
3.  Christian McCaffrey
4.  Ezekiel Elliott
5.  Alvin Kamara
6.  Le'Veon Bell
7.  Antonio Brown
8.  Michael Thomas
9.  Melvin Gordon
10. James Connor
11. Davante Adams
12. Julio Jones
13. Adam Thielen
14. DeAndre Hopkins
15. Travis Kelce
16. Patrick Mahomes
17. Zach Ertz
18. Odell Beckham Jr.
19. Tyreek Hill
20. JuJu Smith-Schuster
21. Mike Evans
22. Keenan Allen
23. Philip Lindsay
24. Stefon Diggs

  

2018 FANTASY FOOTBALL POSTCRIPT: ODELL BECKHAM JR. WR NEW YORK GIANTS

For the fourth time in five NFL seasons, New York Giants ace wideout Odell Beckham Jr. will fail to play in all 16 games as he wound up sitting the last four contests of 2019 due to a serious quad injury.  Injuries and missed time have gone hand-in-hand with Beckham's stellar receiving ability and it is this setup that he will take into drafts next summer where he should drop into firm Round 2 territory for the first time since bursting onto the NFL scene.  In terms of his 2018 production, Beckham was every bit the WR 1 he always has been when on the field as he grabbed 77 balls for 1,052 yards and 6 scores but again we are talking about more missed time undermining the overall product.  Since Beckham's injuries are becoming more than a trend, it is impossible to make him a first round pick in fantasy football drafts next summer given this crucial negative.  As it is, we initially already have Antonio Brown, Adam Thielen, Davante Adams, DeAndre Hopkins, Michael Thomas, and Julio Jones all ranked ahead of Beckham for 2019 and you could make the argument that JuJu Smith-Schuster and Tyreek Hill should be above him as well.  Thus, a second round grade should be a certainty for Beckham next season and even then he carries tremendous risk to continue missing outings. 


Saturday, December 22, 2018

2019 FANTASY BASEBALL DRAFT SLEEPER: DOMINGO SANTANA OUTFIELDER SEATTLE MARINERS

Perhaps unfairly lost in the shuffle that was the crowded Milwaukee Brewers outfield in 2018 was multi-category contributor Domingo Santana who actually spent time back in the minor leagues despite hitting 30 home runs, swiping 15 bases, and batting .278 in what was a terrific breakout campaign the year prior.  Alas, the arrivals of Lorenzo Cain and Christian Yelich last winter pushed Santana out of the picture last season but he received new life last December when the Brewers traded him to the Seattle Mariners.  As a result of the move, Santana will now move into a firm starting outfield spot for the Mariners for the start of the new season and that will put him back in play as an intriguing power/speed upside pick in spring drafts.  While Santana really needs to get the strikeouts under control (29.3 and 33.8 the last two seasons), the power/speed game makes him well worth a speculative pick in the late middle rounds.  

2019 PROJECTION:  .255 22 HR 67 RBI 75 R 14 SB