Author: Steven Van Tassell (@SteveVT33)
Bye weeks were originally supposed to start in Week 5 with the Packers and Lions, but the Titans and Steelers ended up having their bye in Week 4 due to a coronavirus outbreak with the Titans. Next, the Patriots and Broncos had their bye weeks moved to Week 5 as the Patriots experienced positive cases on their team. Now, it’s on to Week 6 and bye week issues are becoming real for some Dynasty Owners, including those in the Chase for the Ring. With Las Vegas, Los Angeles Chargers, New Orleans and Seattle on bye, there are many Dynasty Owners out there wondering how they are going to replace Josh Jacobs, Darren Waller, Hunter Henry, Drew Brees, Alvin Kamara, Chris Carson, D.K. Metcalf and of course, Russell Wilson in their Starting lineups. It’s possible that between yourself and your opponent, one of you doesn’t have a full Bench of players who aren’t on bye this week.
Just looking at the Chase for the Ring Top 10 current lineups finds half of the Top 10 fielding a full Starting lineup and Bench right now in Week 6. Admittedly, there are a few days left before Sunday for these teams to pick up a player off the Free Agent Auction or swing a trade, but that’s a lot of teams going without either a Bench QB and/or kicker when their record is either 5-0 or 4-1 and they are in the hunt for the Ring. There is even one 4-1 team playing a Chase contender starting Jordan Love with Jake Fromm on their Bench. At this point, the decision to not draft a third starting QB or a third kicker and the inability to pick one up off the Free Agent Auction due to salary cap restraints starts to make Dynasty Owner feel a lot less like a fantasy and closer to reality for Dynasty Owners.
This lack of a Bench QB and/or kicker could be a 4-5 point swing in your Week 6 matchup and the difference between a win and a loss, or the just the loss of those 4-5 points could be the difference between being in the Top 25 or just outside of it. That’s why someone in your league might have bid a crazy amount of Dynasty Dollars on Andy Dalton on Wednesday (he went for $80 million Dynasty Dollars in my beta league, but wasn’t available in the Experts league since Sideline Squib handcuffed him to Dak with the #253 draft pick). The bottom line is that if you’re not fielding a full Bench this week due to bye week issues, you aren’t alone. It’s might cost you though.
Regardless of bye weeks, every week of the regular season and playoffs, there will be a set of players presented at each position (QB, RB, WR, TE) who you should have as a Starter in your Dynasty Owner lineup as well as one player per position who should be on your Bench or Practice Squad. We won’t recommend a kicker to Start or Bench though and these won’t be the obvious choices for Starters, like go ahead and start Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce (as if you weren’t going to do that already if you have them). Instead, these will be guys to Start who might be ranked outside the top players at their position, not be highly owned or who were drafted to be a backup. For the Bench or Practice Squad choices, we’ll find typical Starters who shouldn’t be in your Starting lineup for the week based on matchups or past performance against a team. We’ll also review my Week 5 recommendations and see how those players fared.
Finally, we will look at one Dynasty Owner game, our Match-up of the Week. For the Match-up of the Week, we will look at the overall projected score and then each team’s Starters and Bench to see how their current lineups are projected to produce. If you want your Dynasty Owner team to be featured as the Match-up of the Week in the future, just tweet me (@SteveVT33).
All stats are based on the Standard Dynasty Owner scoring system as outlined in the updated Dynasty Owner Constitution. Standard Dynasty Owner scoring gives you .1 points for every yard rushing or receiving, .1 point for every 2 yards passing, 1 point per reception, 6 points for a rushing, receiving or passing touchdown and 2 points for a successful 2-point conversion (rushing, receiving, or passing). Interceptions or fumbles lost cost you 3 points, while a fumble that is recovered by the player’s team is a loss of only 1 point. Bonus points are available for 100-199 yards rushing (2 points), 200 yards rushing or receiving (6 points), 300-399 yards passing (1 point) and 400 yards passing (4 points). There is also a 3 point bonus for clutch scoring, which is a score that results in a lead change in the final two minutes of the 4th quarter or overtime. Kickoff and punt return touchdowns are worth 6 points for the player and kickoff and punt returns are worth 1 point for every 40 yards.
Standard Dynasty Owner scoring for kickers gives you 1 point for every extra point, while a missed extra point will cost you 1 point. It’s 2 points for a field goal of between 0 and 39 yards, 4 points for a field goal between 40 and 49 yards and 5 points for a field goal of 50 yards or longer. A missed field goal of between 0 and 39 yards will cost you 3 points, while a miss of 40 yards or more is a loss of 2 points.
For the purposes of this article, ADP and Dynasty Owner ownership statistics were current as of October 16th.
These Guys Should be Starters This Week
First, let’s take a look at how my Week 5 Starter recommendations fared (Good, Bad or Just Ok):
- QB: Teddy Bridgewater – 29.0 (Good recommendation)
- RB: Tony Pollard – 5.9 (Bad recommendation)
- WR: Cole Beasley – 11.3 (Just Ok recommendation)
- TE: Eric Ebron – 6.3 (Bad recommendation)
For the first time, the QB recommendation was Good as Teddy Bridgewater was a Top 12 (#11) QB for the week. At RB, the prediction that Dallas would have a big lead and run over the Giants was not to be and so Tony Pollard only put up 5.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Bad recommendation. As was Eric Ebron, who had 6.3 points which included a lost fumble that cost his Dynasty Owners three points and Ebron the difference between being a Just Ok recommendation as the #15 TE and a Bad recommendation as the #19 TE for the week. Finally, Cole Beasley had another double digit Dynasty Owner fantasy point week, but was Just Ok for the second week in a row with many WRs outscoring him again. We finally got our first Good QB recommendation in Week 5 and now it’s time for the first Good WR recommendation (and more) in Week 6:
Kyle Allen (QB – WAS): In less than a half of football against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, Allen had 10.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points (74 passing yards, 7 rushing yards, 1 rushing TD). Not bad for not playing all season for the $585,000 QB. Allen was injured on a hit to his arm and replaced by Alex Smith, but is expected back at QB for the Football Team’s next game against the New York Giants. The Giants sport a below average defense and have given up an average of 20.6 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game to QBs. Those QBs haven’t exactly been Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Dan Marino, Dan Fouts and Drew Brees in their prime. Nick Mullens was able to put together a 24.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy point performance against the Giants defense and there’s no reason to think that Allen can’t do the same or better. This is only applicable to Dynasty Owners with Allen on their rosters as he’s almost universally owned. He shouldn’t start over Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen, but would make a nice replacement for Dynasty Owners who might also have Joe Burrow, Daniel Jones or Carson Wentz also on their roster.
J.K. Dobbins (RB – BAL): If this list was based on talent, then Dobbins wouldn’t be here. However, he hasn’t gotten the opportunities in the Baltimore offense yet this season despite averaging 7.9 yards per carry rushing and having more receptions than any other Ravens RB with nine. He’s only gotten to rush the ball 16 times in the first five games of the season and so his RB rank right now is #38 overall. It’s the best on the team as Mark Ingram is #39 and Gus Edwards is #61, but still leaves him well outside being a definite Starter at RB or FLEX this week. The Ravens’ opponent this week is the Philadelphia Eagles who have given up an average of 14.6 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game to their opponent’s top RB this season. That should be Dobbins this week (and frankly every week) for Baltimore and if he gets the average points being given up by the Eagles, he’ll be at the edge of the Top 20 RBs, making him a RB2 or FLEX and in your Starting lineup. If you drafted Dobbins, you drafted him with a high pick (ADP 27.1). Time to make Dobbins earn that early selection and get him in your Starting lineup.
Christian Kirk (WR – ARI): It’s tough being one of the other starting WR when D’Andre Hopkins is on your team. Hopkins is a target monster with 45 so far this year compared to 43 for all of the other Arizona WRs combined. And he hasn’t had less than 150 targets in a season since his second season in 2014. That’s probably why Christian Kirk has seemingly struggled so far this season and is the #78 ranked WR in Dynasty Owner currently. Fortunately for Kirk’s owners, he has been scoring more the past two weeks (10.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in Week 4 and 12.0 in Week 5). Next up are the Dallas Cowboys who have given up an average of 40 points per game in their last four games with the lowest point total in that time being 34 by the New York Giants. Arizona is a much better passing team than the Giants and so their WRs are likely to feast on the Cowboys secondary. Hopkins will get his targets, receptions and yards, but so should someone else and for the past two weeks, that’s been Kirk. Insert him into your Starting lineup this week.
Cameron Brate (TE – TB): The Saints and Falcons have been the worst defenses against TEs this season, but the Saints are on bye and the Falcons just had a positive COVID case so who knows if they will play this week. Also, the Vikings TEs are Irv Smith Jr. and Kyle Rudolph, and I can’t stomach the thought of recommending either one of them, so it’s time to look elsewhere. Which brings us to Cameron Brate of Tampa Bay. Last week, he was tied for first in receptions with Mike Evans and tied for second in targets behind Evans. O.J. Howard was getting as much (or more) targets than Rob Gronkowski before he was injured and Brate looks like he’s stepping into that role for Tampa now. His $6.8 million annual salary means that he’s only owned in 7% of Dynasty Owner leagues, so not a lot of Dynasty Owners even have the opportunity to put him in their Starting lineup. If you are missing Darren Waller, Hunter Henry or Jared Cook this week and somehow have Brate on your roster, then Start him.
These Guys Should Be on the Bench (or Practice Squad) This Week
Next up is reviewing the Week 5 Bench or Practice Squad recommendations to see how those did.
- QB: Gardner Minshew II – 26.9 (Bad recommendation)
- RB: Joe Mixon – 15.4 (Just Ok recommendation)
- WR: Terry McLaurin – 5.6 (Good recommendation)
- TE: Zach Ertz – 1.6 (Good recommendation)
For the first time this season, we had two Good Bench recommendations (Terry McLaurin and Zach Ertz), which is exactly what I asked for last week. Terry McLaurin missed having Dwayne Haskins throwing him the ball (did I just type that sentence), while Zach Ertz misses having a WR who can take the pressure and the double teams off him. As a result, both of them should not have been in your Starting lineup. On the Just Ok side was Joe Mixon who scored 15.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points, but needed a whopping 30 touches to do so. Even so, he was barely in the Top 20 RBs for the week, so that recommendation was Just Ok. Gardner Minshew II was the #12 QB this week, which means he should have been a Starter, therefore that recommendation was Bad. Last week, I wrote that hopefully the Good Bench TE selections keep coming and it pairs with the first Good Bench WR selection of the season. Since that’s what happened, I’m asking for four Good Bench recommendations with these Week 6 selections.
Tom Brady (QB – TB): Brady is currently the #7 QB in Dynasty Owner, so he should be a Starter, but he is coming off a poor outing in Week 5 against the Bears in which he only scored 17.7 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Brady has had two very good games (46.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in Week 4 and 31.9 points in Week 3) to go along with an average game in Week 1 (23.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points) and two poor ones (10.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in Week 2 and last week with 17.7 points). The Green Bay defense is rested after their Week 5 bye and should be plenty ready to face Brady and the Buccaneers. Brady’s top three WRs (Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Scott Miller) were all limited in practice on Thursday and questionable for Sunday’s game. Their health, or lack of it, might task even the G.O.A.T. so Bench Brady this week.
Aaron Jones (RB – GB): Don’t say this too loud for fear of being mocked, but Aaron Jones is TD-dependent. He’s the #4 RB in Dynasty Owner despite playing one fewer game than every other top RB, but much of his scoring is built on his six TDs so far this year. On the other side of the ball, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense has been pretty stellar against the run in 2020, allowing only 43 rushing yards per game. Of course, they have allowed five TDs to RBs (4 rushing and 1 receiving), so Jones might still be a top RB if he doesn’t gain many yards on the ground. Not a big fan of having to rely on a guy to score TDs to be worth a spot in my Starting lineup. With Alvin Kamara, Josh Jacobs and Chris Carson out plus injuries to Dalvin Cook, Nick Chubb, Austin Ekeler, Dynasty Owners might have no choice but to Start Jones. However, if you have some depth, consider leaving him on the Bench this week.
Cooper Kupp (WR – LAR): Out of the Rams three main receiving weapons, Cooper Kupp is the one most likely to have a bad game versus the San Francisco 49ers. Last year, he only scored 17.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in two games vs. the 49ers compared with 27.9 for Robert Woods and 24.9 for Tyler Higbee. And in his only other appearance against San Francisco back in 2017, he scored just 3.7 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. He didn’t play in either game against the 49ers in 2018. It appears that 49ers Defensive Coordinator Robert Saleh, who has been at the helm of the team’s defense since 2017, has Kupp’s number. Kupp is currently the #17 WR in Dynasty Owner and was a high draft pick (ADP 56.2). Don’t let those stats make you overlook his track record against this week’s opponent and leave Kupp on your Dynasty Owner Bench.
Noah Fant (TE – DEN): Fant is listed as questionable to play as of Thursday night, so Dynasty Owners may not have to decide about Starting him this week against New England. The Patriots have faced the #1 and #2 TEs in Dynasty Owner the past two weeks in Travis Kelce and Darren Waller and held them to 10.0 and 2.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points respectively. Not sure why Fant would be expected to do better than that, especially coming off a sprained ankle sustained in the Broncos Week 4 victory over the Jets. Don’t bother waiting until Sunday to make your decision to Bench Fant, do it now and worry about other things.
Dynasty Owner Match-up of the Week – DynastyPrice vs. Dynasty Rewind
It’s time for our sixth Dynasty Owner Match-up of the Week for the 2020 season and this one is a grudge match. DynastyPrice (Garret Price) of the Dynasty Nerds battles his former crew at Dynasty Rewind. Verbal shots have been fired on Twitter and now it’s time to see who’s got the better Dynasty Owner team.
Based on the exclusive Dynasty Owner scoring projections for each team’s current lineup, it’s Dynasty Rewind as they are projected to win by 13.8 points (124.4 to 110.6). Not exactly the cakewalk that Dynasty Rewind tweeted (https://twitter.com/DynastyRewind/status/1316798650085978115), but a solid win for the Rewind crew. First, let’s look each team’s current Starting lineup to see who’s got the advantage there:
The Dynasty Rewind advantage is built upon their RBs, including James Robinson at the FLEX position as Miles Sanders, David Montgomery and Robinson are expected to score 40.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points, while Duke Johnson, Johnathan Taylor and Preston Williams at FLEX are projected for just 28.3 points. The rest of the Starting lineups are even.
Let’s look at both Benches to see if both teams have a full one or if the Bye week is forcing one or both teams to have someone on the Bench who is on Bye.
Dynasty Rewind has Drew Brees on their Bench, getting them a guaranteed zero. Of course, they did draft three starting QBs, it’s just that the third one was Dwyane Haskins who is no longer a starter for the Washington Football Team. DynastyPrice is fortunate that both of his starting QBs (Baker Mayfield and Joe Burrow) aren’t on bye this week. Even with the zero from Brees, the Rewind team is projected to score more Bench points (52.3 to 40.5).
Both teams need a victory as Dynasty Rewind is in third place in our Experts league at 3-2 and a loss will knock them down the standings. DynastyPrice sits in 10th place, but his 2-3 record would move to .500 with a victory and put them right in the hunt for the playoffs.
There’s no bye week in Dynasty Owner! Dynasty Owners can’t take a week off from setting their Starting lineup or their Bench, especially not in Week 6 when no one has clinched a playoff berth or is totally out of the playoff hunt officially yet. Dynasty Owners also have to make sure all of the games will be played as scheduled and adjust accordingly if more bye weeks are moved around.
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