Anyone can predict who to start or sit prior to any NFL fantasy week. However, accountability and continued success are what sets one apart from the rest.
Today we’re looking back and grading my choices from the NFL’s week nine.
*Please note these are based on non-PPR leagues*
I’m famous for taking a bold stance with at least one player every week. But nothing might have been as bold as my take on Jacksonville quarterback Gardner Minshew. While big names like Jamey Eisenberg and Field Yates had him as their “Start-of-the-Week”, I had him as one of my top three “Sit Em’s” when he faced off against Houston overseas in London. I said:
“I know, I know, Minshew is fighting to keep the starting job after the Jaguars’ bye week in week 11 when Nick Foles is eligible to return. However, this game is in London and Minshew has never taken a flight outside of the United States. The time adjustment and his banged up receivers will be working against him. No. 1 wideout D.J. Chark (who has the most receiving TDs in the NFL through week eight) is questionable with a nagging quad injury, No. 2 Dede Westbrook is questionable with a neck injury and Marquise Lee just landed on IR. His status improves to a bust option with high upside however, if he gets his No. 1 and No. 2 back. But crazy things always happen in London games…”
Chark ended up playing – and he had his worst game of the season: four catches on nine targets for 32 yards and no touchdowns. It was his first game under 40 yards this season. Westbrook ended up missing the contest and guys like Chris Conley and Keelan Cole entered the game as receivers. Minshew did end up picking up a lot of garbage time yards, but he only completed 27 passes while missing 20 of them. He added 309 yards, no TDs and two interceptions; good enough to now be the backup to Nick Foles. Crazy things always happe in London games…
Kayla’s Grade on the Call: A
Grades for Kayla’s other QB calls:
Start Em QBs:
Russell Wilson: 29-for-43, 378 yards, 5 TDs, 0 INTs, (53 fantasy points): A
Dak Prescott: 22-for-35, 257 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT, (30 fantasy points): A-
Kirk Cousins: 19-for-38, 220 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, (29.5 fantasy points): A-
Sit Em QBs:
Josh Allen: 14-for-20, 160 yds, 2 total TDs, 0 INTs, (21.2 fantasy points): B-
Ryan Tannehill: 27-for-39, 331 yards, 2 total TDs, 2 INTs, (28.3 fantasy points): C-
Matthew Stafford: 26-for-41, 406 yds, 3 TDs, 1 INT (35.9 fantasy points): A
Aaron Rodgers: 23-for-35, 161 yards, 1 TD, 0 INTs, (16.5 fantasy points): A
Now I did say that Rodgers would likely struggle because the Chargers’ rush defense is horrendous and the scores would likely go to Aaron Jones. However, LA came to play and it had to have created the upset of the week. Jones only had 30 yards and the Packers were held scoreless until the second half.
Kayla’s Overall QB Grade: A
Moving onto running backs, one guy in very good, yet unsuspecting matchup, stood out. I chose Baltimore RB Mark Ingram to have a killer day against New England. Readers think I’m crazy, statistics know I was right. I said:
“If it weren’t for Nick Chubb’s two fumbles last week the media would be carving up the Patriots’ defense about it. But Chubb did run for 131 yards, Frank Gore has also had more than 100 yards (109) and Le’Veon Bell even had 70. Baltimore wins this game if Lamar Jackson and Ingram continue to pound the ball. With two weeks to prepare for New England at home, Ingram’s carries should be bolstered.”
Ingram finished with 15 carries for 115 yards and two catches for 29 yards. I would’ve loved to see him get into the end zone, but my call on the Ravens pounding the ball still stood. Jackson accounted for two rushing scores and 61 yards on the ground. Add backup RB Gus Edwards’ 27 yards and one TD, the Patriots gave up a total of 203 yards on the ground and three rushing TDs. It was BY FAR New England’s worst rushing defensive game of the year.
Kayla’s Grade on the Call: A-
Grades for Kayla’s other RB calls:
Start Em RBs:
Jordan Howard: 19 carries for 82 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (14.3 fantasy points): A-
Adrian Peterson: 18 carries for 108 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles (13 fantasy points): B
Sit Em RBs:
Detroit Lions backfield: Ty Johnson: 9 carries for 29 yards, J.D. McKissic: 4 carries for 32 yards, 1 receiving TD, Paul Perkins: 3 carries for 16 yards. Grade: A
David Montgomery: 14 carries for 40 yards, 2 TDs, 0 fumbles, (19.6 fantasy points): C
I’m giving myself a C here for an average score because Montgomery’s rushing scores were each 1-yarders and Chicago only had 24 yards of offense in the first half. They didn’t score until the end of the third quarter and these came in garbage time.
Damien Williams: 12 carries for 125 yards, 1 TD, 0 TDs, (18.8 fantasy points): C
I’m also giving myself a C here because Williams had a 91-yard TD. Otherwise, his day would’ve ended with 11 carries for 34 yards.
Mark Walton: 12 carries for 29 yards (41 total yards), 0 TDs, 0 fumbles (4.1 fantasy points): D
Derrick Henry: 13 carries for 63 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles (1 REC TD), (21.9 fantasy points): D
Kayla’s Overall RB Grade: C-
With wide receivers no one call really stood out. I hit the nail on the head with Tyler Lockett, Kenny Golloday, Terry McLaurin, Larry Fitzgerald, Zach Pascal and arguably Michael Gallup.
Start Em WRs:
Tyler Lockett: 13 catches for 152 yards, 2 TDs, 0 fumbles, (27.7 fantasy points): A
Kenny Golloday: 4 catches for 132 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (19.2 fantasy points): A
Tyrell Williams: 3 catches for 48 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (4.8 fantasy points): D
Williams had one TD in every game played this season, but his streak came to an end. Adding a TD to this stat line would have bolstered the grade to a B-.
Sit Em WRs:
Terry McLaurin: 4 catches for 39 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (3.9 fantasy points): A
Larry Fitzgerald: 4 catches for 38 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (3.8 fantasy points): A
Odell Beckham Jr: 5 catches for 87 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (8.7 fantasy points): B+
Zach Pascal: 5 catches, 76 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (15.4 fantasy points): A
Michael Gallup: 2 catches, 33 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (9.3 fantasy points): B
Tight ends didn’t bode as well as WRs and QBs, mainly because of big plays that were pulled off, but the category isn’t a wash either.
Kayla’s Overall WR Grade: A
Start Em TEs:
Darren Fells: 1 catch, 1 yard, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (6.1 fantasy points): B
Good thing Fells had that red zone look or else he would’ve had nothing in Houston’s London trouncing. Fells dropped off from his steady work over the last few weeks, but still paid dirt.
Dallas Goedert: 4 catches, 39 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles: (3.9 fantasy points): D
Fellow TE Zach Ertz finally had a game that most were thinking he’d consistently have all season. This pushed Goedert to the back-burner and ended his scoring streak.
Darren Waller: 2 catches, 52 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles: (5.2 fantasy points): C-
Waller was held in check from a Lions DST who finished with negative points. Detroit did a great job limiting both Williams and Waller, giving Waller his second-worst game of the year.
Sit Em TEs:
Vance McDonald: 5 catches, 30 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles, (9 fantasy points): C
I said that McDonald needed to have a TD to be relevant, and that’s exactly what happened for the first time in over one month.
Dawson Knox: 2 catches, 14 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (1.4 fantasy points): A
Noah Fant: 3 catches, 115 yards, 1 TD, 0 fumbles (17.5 fantasy points): C
Again, Fant caught a 70-yard catch and run, so without it he would’ve finished with 2 catches for 45 yards.
Jonnu Smith: 3 catches, 18 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (1.8 fantasy points): D
Smith played a tough defense and was used solely as a blocker in 90-percent of his snaps. That was uncommon over the past two weeks in place of injured Delanie Walker, but his trend ended.
Eric Ebron: 2 catches, 16 yards, 0 TDs, 0 fumbles, (1.6 fantasy points): A
Kayla’s Overall TE Grade: C
I’ll take A’s in half my categories. A lot of my calls had a lot of stats to back them up, but you can never predict big plays, especially when it comes to unproductive TEs. But if you really know football, a lot of my choices make sense and you’re wondering why you didn’t think of it. 🙂