Get a jump on the competition this week. Now is the best time
to prepare for upcoming byes instead of after the weekend when
everyone else realizes they can’t field a starting lineup
and makes claims too.
Ben Roethlisberger currently sits as the
QB19 through 3 weeks in standard scoring leagues.
"The truth is found when men are free to pursue it."
- Franklin D Roosevelt
1) Starting Sam Bradford’s replacement,
Case Keenum is, at best, a longshot play.
While Keenum posted 32.3 fantasy points against Tampa Bay last
Sunday, past history indicates the very small chance of that happening
again. Since 2015, Keenum has managed to crack the 20-point fantasy
mark just twice in 17 tries. Thatís less than a 12-percent
chance. Over the past 10 meetings between Detroit and Minnesota,
Vikings QBs have averaged only 16.4 FPts/G.
2) Beware of overvaluing Chris Thompsonís
early season production.
Yes, the Washington back is ranked third among running backs in
fantasy points (19.7 FPts/G), heís just not actually running
the ball very often. Thompson has attempted just 14 rushes for
119 yards, including 61 yards on one carry. Plus, Redskins coach
Jay Gruden just said he wasnít going to give Thompson more
touches, probably due to his poor injury history. Ride him for
as long as ďFat RobĒ Kelley is nicked up and then
trade him while his value is ďnose-bleedĒ high.
3) Mike Gillislee is completely touchdown-dependent.
Last season, when LeGarrette Blount rushed for 18 touchdowns,
he also managed 1,161 yards. Gillislee is on pace for just 773
yards and has a poor matchup this week against Carolinaís
tough linebacker duo of Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis. Avoid him
this weekend and wait for more favorable matchups against the
Jets and Falcons.
4) Ben Roethlisberger woes continue.
True. Particularly on the road as weíve discussed in the
past. Over his first three games of 2017 the passing yards have
decreased, his completion percentage has dropped as has his fantasy
production. He hasnít thrown for 300 in a regular season
game since Week 10 of last season and hasnít done it in
a regular season road game in nine games. He has never thrown
for 300 yards in Baltimore, so Week 4 isnít likely to be
his breakout game.
5) Kareem Hunt is getting all the
hype (and rightfully so), but Tyreek Hill is playing at a high
Hillís 13.2 FPts/G is ranked fourth-best, behind only Stefon Diggs, Jordy Nelson and Antonio Brown. Heís been a top receiver
since mid-season of 2016. However, beware that two of Hillís
next three games are against teams who arenít yielding wideout
fantasy points Washington (ranked third) and Pittsburgh (ranked
ďThere are a terrible lot of lies going about the world, and
the worst of it is that half of them are true." Ė Winston
1) Hunt is on pace to break the all-time
single season mark of 2,509 combined yards set in 2009 by Chris
Yes, itís true heís on pace to break the mark, but
no, he wonít get there. Hunt has second-best total in NFL
history for rookie combined yards (538) through three games (Lions
rookie Billy Sims holds the record with 562 yards). When Sims
averaged 187.3 combined yards over the first three games he finished
averaging 104.8 ypg over the final 13 games, including just three
100-yard rushing games. Sims had six touchdowns in the first three
and 10 in the final 13. Not a bad finish, but no one could possibly
keep up that early pace. Neither will Hunt. Despite protestations
to the contrary, head coach Andy Reid will need to limit Huntís
workload. Plus, opposing defensive coordinators will start designing
defenses to stop him. And then there is the ďrookie wall.Ē
Heís at his peak fantasy value right now and unless you
think heís the next Eric Dickerson, perhaps you could get
two star players for him in trade?
2) Completing a lot of passes always
equates to producing a lot of fantasy points.
False. Through three games, the top-six in completions are; Aaron Rodgers (89), Eli Manning (86), Drew Brees (76), Carson Palmer
(75), Philip Rivers (73) and Mike Glennon (72). Only two of those
six, the two obvious ones Rodgers and Brees, are top-10 in quarterback
fantasy points per game. Palmer ranks 12th, Manning 20th, Rivers
25th and Glennon 31st. Last season, seven of the top-12 in completions
finished outside the top-10 in FPts/G. In 2015, eight of the top-12
ended up outside the top-10.
3) Rams wideout Sammy Watkinsí 10.5
FPts/G is sustainable.
Iím going to have to say no to this one. Through three games
heís ranked 12th in FPts/G, but heís done it on just
14 targets, catching 13 of them. A 92.8 catch-percentage is not
sustainable. In 2016, the top-10 receivers (by yards) averaged
a 64.8 catch-percentage. Unless he starts seeing twice as many
targets, expect his average to take a significant hit.
4) Itís time to give up on DeAndre
Hopkins and trade him.
While heís ranked just 25th in FPts/G (8.8), heís
No. 1 in targets (37). Meanwhile, rookie Deshaun Watson has improved
each week in completions, completion percentage, passing yards
and fantasy points. As long as Hopkins is getting the opportunities,
heís worth keeping on your roster and in your lineup.
5) Itís time to admit the Jimmy
Graham experiment in Seattle is a failure.
OK, itís not Brees-to-Graham in New Orleans, but the Seahawks
tight end put up decent numbers last season (65-923-6). He started
slowly this season because of an ankle injury, but Graham caught
7-of-11 targets last Sunday in Tennessee and faces a Colts pass
defense which has allowed 851 yards through the first three games.
With Doug Baldwin questionable (groin), Seattle could run the
game plan through Graham for a change.
Steve Schwarz served as the fantasy sports editor of The Sports Network and is the 2014 FSWA Football Writer of the Year.