We Talk Fantasy Sports: November 2013 We Talk Fantasy Sports: November 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Preparing for the Fantasy Football Playoffs - Running Backs

LeSean McCoy gets in on the scoringPrior to the start of the NFL season, we tried to brainwash you into drafting your running backs in the early rounds of your fantasy football draft.  While most of you went this route, the fantasy playoff matchups will prove this strategy as a winning one.  Yesterday, we looked at the QBs Strength of Schedule heading into the Playoffs.

First rounders Alfred Morris (Chiefs, Falcons, Cowboys), DeMarco Murray (Bears, Packers, Redskins), Jamaal Charles (Redskins, Raiders, Colts) and LeSean McCoy (Lions, Vikings, Bears) have some great matchups. 

C.J. Spiller (Buccaneers, Jaguars, Dolphins) and Matt Forte (Cowboys, Browns, Eagles) are also due for some big days during the playoffs.

Eddie Lacy will continue to lead your team to the promised land with matchups against the Atlanta Falcons, Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers come Championship Weekend.  The Packers rookie has proven all the doubter wrong this season and is continuing to rush the ball well without Aaron Rodgers under center.  Since Week 5, Lacy leads all NFL rushers with 755 yards on the ground.

Fellow rookie Giovani Bernard may also be key to many championships as the Cincinnati Bengals get the Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers and Minnesota Vikings.  The Bengals are not running very much but Gio and the BenJarvus Green-Ellis are splitting carries with the upside going to Bernard when plays need to be made.

Hopefully Frank Gore owners get a 1st round bye as San Fran will host the Seahawks but after that it's a matchup with the Bucs and a home game against the Falcons!

With one more week left to injury yet another RB, be safe and add some depth to your roster just in case!  These guys can help!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Preparing for the Fantasy Football Playoffs - Quarterbacks

Aaron RodgersMost fantasy football leagues will begin their playoffs come Week 14 and if you have already clinched a spot, or are battling for one this week, it is important to recognize matchups for the rest of the NFL season.  Maybe Carson Palmer has been a huge part of your end of the season playoff run but Weeks 14, 15, and 16 are tough matchups against the St. Louis Rams, Tennessee Titans and Seattle Seahawks. 

Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler owners got off to hot starts this season, before injuries potentially ended your fantasy football season.  However, if you weren't savvy enough to save your season by trade, waiver wire, or a nice late round draft pick, there are QBs available that have solid matchups.  Both Rodgers and Cutler should be back when needed most, but just in case, add one of these guys to your roster.

How To Deal With Losing Derrick Rose

In my 14 team money league, I had the 8th overall pick and took a gamble on Derrick Rose. The guy took more than a full year off from playing basketball and his knee was fully healed as he was destroying his oppositions in pre-season. Looking back I should of selected John Wall, Paul George, Anthony Davis or Kyrie Irving who all were selected after Rose. However I now have to work with what I have left on my roster.

My core now consists of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Klay Thompson, Nikola Pekovic and Kenneth Faried. I also have some other valuable players like J.J. Hickson, Trevor Ariza (if he ever returns from injury), J.R. Smith and Jamal Crawford. That being said, I'm not confident in this team as I sit in 8th place at 17-19.

Losing Rose, I lost my only true point guard, and I'm already 13th in the league in total assists. So I know I have to upgrade at the PG position. I made a trade to acquire Greivis Vasquez and Ersan Ilyasova for Pekovic. Ilyasova is coming off an injury so I was able to buy low on him and will eventually be the main guy for the dreadful Bucks. He's more than capable of being a 15 point scorer and grabbing 6-7 boards a game. Vasquez can put up 15-7-5 on any given night, so those two guys I believe will bring a lot to the table for my team. Yes I gave up on Pekovic who is playing great, and is a double double guy but getting 2 valuable players is tough to pass up.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Fix Your Fantasy Basketball Roster

The NBA is being dominated this season by the Indiana Pacers, San Antonio Spurs and Portland Trail Blazers, who have a combined 36-4 record.  Paul George is on pace to win the MVP award, Lance Stephenson has already recorded 2 triple-doubles and Roy Hibbert is protecting the paint, averaging over 4 blocks per game!  The Spurs are second to the Pacers in points allowed per game and on offense only the Miami Heat knock down a higher percentage of shots attempted.  Out on the West Coast, LaMarcus Aldridge is dropping 22 points per game for the Blazers while Damian Lillard, Wes Matthews and Nicolas Batum are helping Portland lead the league in 3pt shooting. 

San Antonio and Portland are both on 10 game win streaks while the Heat have 6 Ws in a row.

New York is a combined 6-19 this season with both the Knicks and Nets winning just 3 games.  Only the Milwaukee Bucks and Utah Jazz have worse records.  But fantasy basketball does not care about team records, only individual stats.  Take a look at these players widely available in ESPN leagues and fix your roster today!

Rodney Stuckey, Det SG1227.65.8/12.00.4793.8/4.40.8490.615.828.2
Gerald Green, Pho SF, SG1328.45.5/11.20.4861.7/2.20.7592.615.259.5
Caron Butler, Mil SF1030.65.1/12.90.3952.2/2.70.8152.114.531.6
Jodie Meeks, LAL SG1427.54.7/9.10.5161.5/1.90.7782.413.317.7
Nick Young, LAL SG, SF1424.74.6/10.60.4392.6/3.40.7871.213.128.3
Dion Waiters, Cle SG1227.74.8/12.40.3892.2/3.30.6671.213.027.2
Glen Davis, Orl PF224.05.0/10.00.5003.0/4.00.7500.013.018.2
Avery Bradley, Bos SG, PG1530.55.7/13.50.4261.0/1.30.7500.512.925.3
Jared Sullinger, Bos PF1323.55.1/10.40.4892.0/2.60.7650.512.731.1
Markieff Morris, Pho PF1226.14.7/9.30.5002.2/2.80.7650.411.940.6
Gary Neal, Mil PG1124.24.1/10.50.3881.7/2.20.7922.011.93.4
Ramon Sessions, Cha PG1421.63.6/8.50.4294.3/5.90.7230.311.92.7
Martell Webster, Wsh SF, SG1331.43.8/8.80.4391.9/2.10.9262.211.837.4
Vince Carter, Dal SG, SF1323.33.9/9.70.4051.8/2.20.7931.711.311.3
Brandon Bass, Bos PF1528.24.5/9.90.4502.1/2.40.8890.011.124.6
Boris Diaw, SA PF, C1223.64.8/8.50.5591.1/1.50.7220.511.13.8
Alec Burks, Uta SG, PG1527.13.9/10.50.3762.7/3.90.7070.411.015.7
Jason Smith, Nor PF, C1227.44.6/8.80.5191.6/1.80.8640.010.84.7
Ray Allen, Mia SG1026.53.6/7.70.4681.6/1.90.8421.710.536.5
John Henson, Mil PF, C1225.04.5/8.30.5401.4/2.30.6300.010.429.4
James Anderson, Phi SG1534.33.9/8.90.4400.9/1.20.7221.710.47.3
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Cha SF1427.73.9/7.70.5092.4/3.60.6470.010.237.8
Marcus Morris, Pho PF1323.13.6/7.60.4751.6/2.20.7501.410.21.7
Amir Johnson, Tor PF, C1329.24.3/7.60.5661.1/1.60.6670.410.160.2
Jarrett Jack, Cle PG1426.24.0/9.20.4341.2/1.40.8500.910.131.7
Patrick Beverley, Hou PG1129.53.5/8.40.4241.0/1.20.8461.910.018.3
C.J. Miles, Cle SF1218.33.8/8.40.4550.8/0.80.9001.610.05.2

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Derrick Rose - Out for Season

The Chicago Bulls will be without Superstar PG Derrick Rose for a long while as he will require surgery to repair a torn meniscus.  Rose was not himself this season, shooting 35% from the floor and averaging just 15.9 points per game with 4 assists and 3 rebounds.  Rose did not play at all last season after tearing his ACL in the other knee and the Bulls managed to win 45 games.  Carlos Boozer and Luol Deng led the Bulls to a first round 7 game upset of the Brooklyn Nets before being knocked out by the Miami Heat in 5 games.  However, this season the Bulls do not have Nate Robinson to spark this already dismal offense.

Chicago is now forced to rely on Mike Dunleavy to knock down some outside jumpers and Marquis Teague is going to have to prove to ownership that he is ready to play in the NBA.

Kirk Hinrich will see a nice boost in fantasy value and is good for double digit points, 4-6 assists and a couple of rebounds a night while knocking down a 3pt shot or 2 each game.

Jimmy Butler, when he returns from injury, is going to have to step up and look to become a weapon on offense.  He currently averages just 7.7 shots per game.

Some other PGs around the league that have some fantasy value and can "replace" Derrick Rose are Trey Burke, Jordan Crawford, Iman Shumpert Mo Williams and Jarrett Jack.

If I am the Chicago Bulls I am looking to trade some of my expensive, but valuable veteran pieces for a shot at an additional draft pick in this STACKED 2014 NBA Draft Class.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Texas Rangers Acquire Prince Fielder

Last night the Texas Rangers traded Ian Kinsler to the Detroit Tigers for Prince Fielder and $30 mil.  While on paper the trade makes perfect baseball sense, and money cents, the Tigers will miss Prince Fielder protecting Miguel Cabrera.  It is no coincidence that Miggy's two best seasons in the MLB have come with Prince Fielder hitting behind him in the lineup.  Cabrera walked 108 times the season before Fielder arrived, and just 156 times in the last two seasons.  Let's be serious though, Miguel Cabrera will be fine, but the Detroit Tigers offense is going to look VERY different this coming season.

Ian Kinsler is going to be knocked down my 2B rankings for 2014 Fantasy Baseball as he has hit just .231 on the road over the last 3 seasons, compared to .294 at hitter friendly Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.  On top of that, he has just 9 hits in 54 ABs in Comerica Park over the last 3 seasons.  I understand why the Tigers would make such a move, but I think they went after the wrong player.

Prince Fielder lasted just two seasons in Detroit after signing a 9 year $214 mil deal, but during that time, only Miguel Cabrera and Chris Davis have driven in more runs, he is top 10 in walks, 12th in hits, his 55 home runs are good for 17th in all of baseball and his 69 doubles sits him 20th.  On top of those numbers, Fielder never missed a single game.  Fielder in Texas means a boost in power numbers, Mitch Moreland moves to the OF or plays DH, and Jurikson Profar will most likely be the Rangers starting 2B, unless of course Robinson Cano is signed. 

However the Rangers construct their roster this offseason, swapping Fielder for Kinsler makes them better.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

How Did Your Fantasy Football Draft Hold Up?

Every team in the NFL has now played at least 9 games, which means the season is half over!  We spent the months, weeks and days leading up to our fantasy football drafts studying, doing mock drafts and researching to ensure we didn't make a mistake when our draft date arrived.  As usual, we all have that one move where we say "WHY DID WE PICK PLAYER A OVER PLAYER B?"  Don't feel bad, we all do it, every season.

Looking back to before the season started, and drafts were happening twice a night for some of us, this is what the average 1st round looked like in a 12 man league:

Player Name Position Team ADP
Adrian PetersonRBMIN1
Doug MartinRBTB2
Jamaal CharlesRBKC3
Arian FosterRBHOU4
C.J. SpillerRBBUF5
Calvin JohnsonWRDET6
Ray RiceRBBAL7
LeSean McCoyRBPHI8
Marshawn LynchRBSEA9
Trent RichardsonRBIND10
Matt ForteRBCHI11
Alfred MorrisRBWAS12

Pretty straight forward, 11 RBs and Calvin Johnson, standard.  Sometimes you saw an Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees, maybe even a Jimmy Graham, but for most of us, maybe in a different order, this is how our first round looked.  Well Martin and Foster are done for the season, Ray Rice has not gained 75 yards rushing this season and Trent Richardson was traded and in 7 games has rushed for just 250 yards on 88 carries.

It is hard to second guess yourself considering that RBs are impossible to find once the season kicks off and these days you are forced to pick up the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 3rd and 4th RBs in Brian Leonard and Bobby Rainey

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Injuries Starting to Pile Up in the NBA

The Indiana Pacers continue to dominate the rest of the NBA and are now 8-0, winning on average by 10 points.  Only the Atlanta Hawks and Miami Heat are over .500 in the Eastern Conference, compared to 9 teams in the West, including the 5-2 Phoenix Suns and Portland Trail Blazers!  But the West also owns the only winless team, and that is the Utah Jazz, who are the worst offensive team in the league, despite Gordon Hayward averaging 19.5 points per game.

As with all fantasy sports, injuries (or lack thereof) determine who wins your league.  In the NBA this season we started without Kobe BryantRajon Rondo, Ryan Anderson and Danilo Gallinari, lost Tyson ChandlerLarry Sanders and JaVale McGee up front, and Steve Nash is not due back until the end of November.  Some lesser names, with the potential to make a difference that are out include Tobias Harris, Carl Landry, Jason Richardson, Luke Ridnour, and Wilson Chandler.  And now Derrick Rose has a hamstring problem.  Most fantasy basketball leagues will limit your moves per week, so you need to make sure each move is the right move.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Arian Foster's Season in Jeopardy

Twitter is exploding with news that Arian Foster could require back surgery, ending his season. 

The Texans haven't disclosed what's wrong with Arian Foster's back. He could end up having surgery and not playing again this season. - @McClain_on_NFL

With the Houston Texans at 2-6 this is no big deal for the team, but for fantasy football owners, who on average drafted Foster 6th overall, this would be a huge blow.  He is already ruled out for Sunday's action.

Foster has only managed a single rushing touchdown all season long (1 TD receiving) but is averaging 4.5 yards per carry and rushed for over 500 yards.  Clearly Ben Tate is the man going forward in Houston, but he is also injured, playing last week with broken ribs.  Tate is also averaging 4.5 yards per carry, has rushed for 399 yards and scored a single TD.  Dennis Johnson is the Texans backup RB now and carried the ball 8 times for 36 yards in his NFL debut last week against the Indianapolis Colts.  He is worth an add to your roster with Tate's health a huge issue.

Other 1st round fantasy picks that have disappointed this season include Doug Martin, Ray Rice and Trent Richardson.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Week 10

The Green Bay Packers and fantasy owners lost Aaron Rodgers on Monday Night Football and now for the next couple of weeks.  Replacing him will not be easy, and this week they will be fighting Tom Brady owners for whatever is left on your waiver wire!  Arian Foster and Darren McFadden barely played in week 9 so who knows if they are going to be any help this week and owners will be battling Jamaal Charles, Stevan Ridley, Chris Ivory and Willis McGahee owners for a replacement if they don't have a suitable back up RB.

The New England Pariots, New York Jets, Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns are all on BYE weeks

BYE Week Impact Players
QBs - Tom Brady, Alex Smith, Geno Smith
RBs - Steven Ridley, Chris Ivory, Jamaal Charles, Willis McGahee
WRs - Aaron Dobson, Danny Amendola, Julian Edelman, Dwayne Bowe, Josh Gordon
TEs - Rob Gronkowski, Jordan Cameron

Waiver Wire Help


Nick Foles - Foles was unbelievable last week against a weak Raiders defense, throwing 7 touchdowns, tying an NFL record. Vick will most likely be sidelined again this week which mean Foles will get another start. This week he goes up against the Packers who let Bears backup Josh McCown throw for 272 yards and 2 TDs.

Jake Locker - Jake Locker is facing the winless Jacksonville Jaguars and he will be on the field for the majority of the game as the Jags offense usually goes 3 and out. The Titans run game should help open up the pass for Locker, and he can also get it done with his legs.

Eli Manning - If he's available in your league and you need a QB this week, this is the week to use Eli. The Giants offense will have Andre Brown back to help the run game, and the Raiders just allowed 7 passing touchdowns to Nick Foles and the Eagles. Eli should pick apart Oakland's secondary.

Case Keenum - It looks like the Texans have found themselves a new QB in Keenum after his performance on Sunday Night Football. Keenum who went to the University of Houston is used to throwing the ball 50+ times a game and loves the deep ball. He connected on several long passes to Andre Johnson, and finished with 350 yards and 3 touchdowns. If Foster and Tate continue to play through injuries, then Houston will rely on Keenum to sling the ball going forward.

Fantasy Football Week 9 Targets Leaders

Since targets have become a stat, fantasy junkies have fallen in love with it, including us! But just because your favorite WR gets thrown to 12 times each week, that does not guarantee anything! That is why we calculated their Catch % for you!

Stats courtesy of ESPN

Running Back Targets Leaders

Jamaal CharlesKC477138966%8.32315
Danny WoodheadSD495739186%83263
Matt ForteCHI404931682%7.90332
Darren SprolesNO374836877%9.91484
Pierre ThomasNO394429089%7.42294
Reggie BushDET314333572%10.82773
Chris OgbonnayaCLE284220767%7.42170
Fred JacksonBUF284024570%8.80222
Jacquizz RodgersATL333819187%5.82190
Giovani BernardCIN303726781%8.92314
LeSean McCoyPHI293732078%111705
Knowshon MorenoDEN293628781%9.91353
Ray RiceBAL273513577%50180
Arian FosterHOU223518363%8.31412

Shday McCoy has been killing fantasy owners and unless he starts making big plays in the pass game, things won't get better.  However, he is not alone with Ray Rice being even worse!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Chaotic Start to the NBA Season

The Philadelphia 76ers are off to a HOT start, led by Michael Carter-Williams, posting wins over the Miami Heat, Washington Wizards and Chicago Bulls.  The Minnesota Timberwolves are breaking scoreboards around the league, and Kevin Love is leading the NBA is scoring with two 30 point games already.  The Indiana Pacers and Houston Rockets are the only teams living up to expectations, and are dominating their opponents.

Eric Bledsoe is off to a scorching start with the Phoenix Suns averaging 22 points 8.7 assists and 6.3 rebounds per game.  With Goran Dragic potential out for a couple of games with an ankle injury, Bledsoe could see a nice boost in stats.  However, Bledsoe is shooting just 40% and 22% from behind the 3pt line.

Derrick Rose looks rusty, shooting just 28% from the field putting up 14.3 points, 4.3 assists and 3.7 rebounds per night.

Russell Westbrook returned to the Oklahoma City Thunder after just 2 games!  He was thought to be out until around Christmas time!  He looked good dropping 21 points 7assists and 4 rebounds on the Suns.  Reggie Jackson can be let go.

Sunday Funday Xpress

Philadelphia Eagles QB Nick Foles had a career day with 7 touchdown passes, completing 22 of his 28 pass attempts against the Oakland Raiders defense.  Foles piled up over 400 passing yards, finding DeSean Jackson 5 times for 150 yards and a touchdown and Riley Cooper 5 times for 139 yards and 3 touchdowns!  LeSean McCoy, Brent Celek and Zach Ertz also caught TD passes from Foles.  Has Chip Kelley's offense FINALLY come alive?

Air It Out

Ground and Pound

Harper, Donaldson Win MVP Awards