Welcome to the latest edition of Good, Bad and Ugly. I wrote a book about fantasy football and I’m following my own advice. Each week (or so) I write this column to track my progress.
The Good: We’re in the plaaaayoffs! (If the season was one-month long)
If the season ended today, after four weeks and one Thursday night of football, I would be playoff bound in both of my fantasy leagues. This is a huge, major, epic accomplishment considering my history of fantasy ineptitude.
Of course, the season doesn’t end today. But please suspend your disbelieve for a few paragraphs. Then we’ll return to reality.
If the season ended today, my fantasy league MVP would be Kareem Hunt. Kareem the Dream. Field of Kareems. The Kareem Team. I drafted Kareem as the 14th RB (27th overall pick). He’s currently the #1-ranked RB and the #3-ranked player at any position (Source: CBSSportsline.com, standard scoring).
Honorable mention would go to Alex Smith. I grabbed Smith off of waivers after his four-TD performance in week 1. He’s currently the #3 QB in all of fantasy, just four points behind Aaron Rodgers.
These two guys are the core of my UndaDawgz team in the Washington Area Fantasy Football League (WAFFL). My WAFFL team is 3-1. The future looks even brighter. That’s because the “Dougernauht” Doug Martin is back from suspension and he’s off to a great start with 74 yards and a TD in his first game.
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@TBBuccaneers) October 6, 2017
Unfortunately the future looks cloudier in my other league. Which brings us back to reality.
The Bad: Duds Ahoy
My book earned me an invitation to participate in a 14-team experts league with industry savants from the Fantasy Sports Trade Association (FSTA). I went undefeated in the first two weeks and I was feeling myself.
That was two straight losses ago. Now I’m 2-2 and I’m clinging to 5th place overall. I’m at risk of falling out of the top 6 and missing the playoffs unless my team improves.
I drafted LeSean McCoy as the #5 RB; he’s currently ranked 10 spots lower at #15. Meanwhile my second RB, Isaiah Crowell, is looking like a bust. I drafted him as the #14 RB and he’s currently ranked #47.
The FSTA league uses a Points Per Reception (PPR) scoring system. It’s the first time in 25 years of playing fantasy that I’ve participated in a PPR league.
In my book I advise people to fully understand their league’s scoring system. Unfortunately I failed to grasp the full importance of pass catchers in a PPR league.
Two of my WRs are ranked in the top 10: DeAndre Hopkins (#3) and Tyreek Hill (#9) (Source: RTSports.com, PPR scoring). That’s great, but I also drafted these three underachieving WRs:
1) Jamison Crowder. I drafted him as the #37 WR and he’s currently ranked #74.
2) J.J. Nelson, who started strong but scored a total of 6.4 points during the past two games.
3) John Ross, who looked unstoppable when he set a new record in the 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, then scored a mere 1.2 fantasy points in three NFL games.
Crowder and Ross are cut from my roster, but free agent pickings are slim in this 14-team league. Facing a lack of good receivers in the free agent market, I just splurged $31 to acquire RB Latavius Murray in the hopes of injecting more offense into this squad. Fingers are crossed.
The Ugly: Losing to myself (sort of)
Mark recently changed his fantasy team name to “Anyone But Harms !!!!!!!!” I’m not joking – his team name includes eight exclamation points. (Also, in case you missed it, I am Harms).
I’m 3-1 in WAFFL. My one loss came against Mark. The guy whose team logo features my face.
Putting a guy’s face on your logo, then beating him by 45 points, is next-level trash talking.
Three and out
1) Here’s a list of steals and duds through the first four weeks of WAFFL. The chart compares where a player was drafted at his position, versus where he ranks after four weeks of games. See if you agree with my list.
2) In my book I discuss the role of fantasy football in establishing lifelong friendships. But don’t just take my word for it, read a few of these wonderful letters to Matthew Berry.
3) This article about Eddie Lacy’s struggle with his weight is one of my favorite articles I’ve read in a long time.
That’s it for this update. Go get ’em!