Week 2 Preview – Heavyweight Battle

By Steven Van Tassell (@SteveVT33)

This week, it’s one of the Dynasty Owner Chase for the Ring matchups we wanted to see in 2019 but didn’t. That’s right, last year’s Champ Eddie Driscoll and New York’s Strongest take on the team that stormed up the Standings in the final two weeks and had the most points in the playoff finals (Dan Clarke of Yorkshire Roses). They didn’t face each other last year because they were in different Dynasty Owner beta leagues, but now we have the opportunity in 2020 to see this heavyweight battle of two of the best Dynasty Owners from last year.

Every week of the regular season and playoffs, we’ll present a set of players 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, Christian McCaffrey 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 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 1 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) and maybe it’ll be your matchup highlighted.

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 September 17th.

These Guys Should be Starters This Week

First, let’s take a look at how my Week 1 Starter recommendations fared (Good, Bad or Just Ok):

  • QB: Jimmy Garoppolo – 25.9 (Just Ok recommendation)
  • RB: Tarik Cohen – 6.7 (Bad recommendation)
  • WR: DeSean Jackson – 6.6 (Bad recommendation)
  • TE: Jordan Reed – 3.2 (Bad recommendation)

A poor start to the 2020 recommendations with just one Just Ok and three Bad recommendations. The Jimmy Garoppolo recommendation almost qualified as Good since he was tied for 13th best QB in Week 1, but instead he fell 1.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points short of Cam Newton for the 12th spot. Tarik Cohen was closer to being Just Ok than either Jackson or Reed as he was the #46 RB for the week – meaning he was a very low-end Bench option. Jackson and Reed were clear Practice Squad players.

Let’s try to do better in Week 2 with these four recommendations:

Mitchell Trubisky (QB – CHI): One great quarter (89 passing yards and 3 passing TDs plus 20 rushing yards) was all it took to make Trubisky the 5th best QB in Dynasty Owner last week with 34.7 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Even with his Top 5 performance, most Dynasty Owners with him on their roster (owned in 94% of Dynasty Owner leagues) probably aren’t thinking about making him their Starter, are they? They should since the Giants defense gave up 29.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points (229 passing yards, 3 passing TDs, 9 rushing yards, 1 fumble) to Ben Roethlisberger. Mitch’s status as a Dynasty Owner Starter isn’t going to last long, so ride him while he’s playing well.

Joshua Kelley (RB – LAC): The atmosphere for the Chargers first game at SoFi Stadium is going to be better than it was for their “home” games the past three years playing in front of more opposition fans at StubHub Center. Will that suddenly make Kelley worth being in your Starting lineup? No, but it was fun to type out. What makes him worthy of being a Starter this week is his play last week (12 carries for 60 rushing yards and a rushing TD) against the Bengals combined with the Chiefs poor performance stopping David Johnson of the Texans last week (19.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points). Chargers Coach Anthony Lynn has suggested that starting RB Austin Ekeler could see his pass-catching opportunities “limited”. Not sure who would pick up those additional opportunities, but with Justin Jackson looking increasingly unlikely to play in Week 2, Kelley is most likely to pick up some extra chances to touch the ball. That makes him someone to look at for your Week 2 Starting lineup, either as a RB2 or FLEX.

Tre’Quan Smith (WR – NO): Somebody in New Orleans is going to have to replace Michael Thomas who is likely out for Week 2 and a few more weeks with a high ankle sprain. It should be Smith who gets a good portion of the nearly 12 targets that Thomas averaged per game in 2019. He’s not available in many Dynasty Owner leagues (available in just 3%, likely because of his low $855,131 salary), but with injuries to several WRs last week, many Dynasty Owners are probably looking to their Practice Squad for those backups who they drafted late, hoping for a breakthrough. Smith has a great chance to do that this week against the Las Vegas Raiders who let Carolina Panthers WRs catch 16 passes for 211 yards last week. Move Smith off your Bench or Practice Squad and get him in your Starting lineup this week.

Logan Thomas (TE – WAS): Jordan Reed didn’t work out as the TE recommendation last week against the Arizona Cardinals, but let’s try again by picking the TE facing Arizona this week. Logan Thomas, come on down! After all, the Cardinals are just one season removed from allowing nearly 20 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game to the opposing team’s TE. Thomas is a guy who you can still find (along with his $3,072,500 salary) in the Free Agent Auction in 31% of Dynasty Owner leagues, down from 71% last week. As the #7 TE last week, he was picked up by a lot of Dynasty Owners and you didn’t pick him up to have him sit on your Practice Squad, did you? Put Thomas in your Starting lineup and see if he can have another TE1 performance this week.

These Guys Should Be on the Bench (or Practice Squad) This Week

Next up are the Week 1 Bench or Practice Squad recommendations. How did they fare (Good, Bad or Just Ok)?

  • QB: Aaron Rodgers – 43.4 (Bad recommendation)
  • RB: Kareem Hunt – 11.1 (Just Ok recommendation)
  • WR: Amari Cooper – 18.1 (Bad recommendation)
  • TE: Evan Engram – 2.9 (Good recommendation)

Just like last year, my Bench recommendations were a little better, but the Rodgers recommendation was a huge mistake since he was Dynasty Owner Player of the Week. Kareem Hunt had only 11.1 Dynasty Owner fantasy points but was the #29 ranked RB (but #81 ranked among players eligible to be in the FLEX lineup spot) so he should have been on the Bench, but just barely. Amari Cooper was a clear Starter as the 18th best WR for the week, while Evan Engram should have been on the Practice Squad with his #36 TE performance. Let’s see if we can do better with this set of players who should be sitting on the Bench or hanging out with the Practice Squad this week.

Carson Wentz (QB – PHI): The Philadelphia offensive line was truly offensive last week, allowing Wentz to get sacked eight times by the Football Team defense. This week, it’s Aaron Donald and the Rams defense who had three sacks of Dak Prescott in the Rams 20-17 victory over Dallas on Sunday night. Lane Johnson should be back this week to help shore up the offensive line, as will RB Miles Sanders who can help take pressure off Wentz with a good running game and receiver to dump off passes. Sure, the Rams defense allowed Cowboys WRs to 18 passes for 190 yards but remember WR isn’t exactly an Eagles position of strength and Prescott was just the #18 QB in Dynasty Owner in Week 1. Wentz struggles for the second week in a row and should be on your Dynasty Owner Bench again.

Melvin Gordon (RB – DEN): If Saquon Barkley only got 12.6 Dynasty Owner fantasy points versus the Pittsburgh defense to finish as the #23 RB for Week 1, do you think Melvin Gordon will do better? Even with Phillip Lindsay possibly missing or being limited in Week 2 and Gordon getting more touches, it’s tough to recommend anything but sitting Gordon on the Bench despite his #16 RB rank in Week 1, ADP of 51 and $8 million salary. Dynasty Owners will have plenty of opportunities to start Gordon this season, just not this week.

Terry McLaurin (WR – WAS): Just because I’m recommending that you start Logan Thomas doesn’t mean I think all players on the Football Team are advisable Starters this week in Dynasty Owner. Unlike Thomas, I think Terry McLaurin should be a Bench option at best. First, he has had less of a connection with Dwayne Haskins than other Football Team QBs in his pro career. He’s averaging 13.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 15 games as a pro, but only 10.45 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in games that Haskins has played the whole game. Second, he’s likely to be shadowed this week by Patrick Peterson who’s looking to be seen as one of the top shadow cornerbacks in the league again in 2020. Both of those factors lead to a Bench recommendation for McLaurin this week.

Noah Fant (TE – DEN): It worked last week so I’m going to use the TE facing the Steelers defense in this spot again in Week 2. Fant had a great Week 1 with 19.1 Dynasty Owner fantasy points (5 receptions, 81 receiving yards, 1 receiving TD) against the Titans on Monday night. He ranks as the 3rd best TE in Dynasty Owner after Week 1 and was drafted as a #1 TE with an ADP of 85.4 despite a salary of $3.15 million. Fant is a Bench recommendation for the same reasons as Giants TE Evan Engram was last week – the Steelers defense is really good in general and especially against TEs since they acquired Minkah Fitzpatrick from the Dolphins last year. Despite his performance last week, Bench Fant this week.

Dynasty Owner Match-up of the Week – New York’s Strongest vs. Yorkshire Roses

It’s time for our second Dynasty Owner Match-up of the Week for the 2020 season. Both teams won their league in 2019, but that can’t happen in 2020 because they are in the same league!  And now in Week 2 of the 2020 season, they must play each other. Yorkshire Roses is looking to start the season 2-0 while New York’s Strongest is trying to avoid their second ever Dynasty Owner loss and an 0-2 start to the 2020 season.

Based on the exclusive Dynasty Owner scoring projections for each team’s current lineup, it looks like New York’s Strongest has a slight edge over Yorkshire Roses (130.5 to 124.1).

Let’s look each team’s Starters and see if New York’s Strongest earns the advantage over Yorkshire Roses from their Starting lineup:

New York’s Strongest definitely has the advantage in Starting lineups with a projected 121.5 to 110.3 lead. Pretty much all of their advantage is at RB as Saquon Barkley’s projection for 21.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points is almost twice the 11.5 Dynasty Owner fantasy points projected for Devin Singletary. Everything else is pretty even.

On to the Bench where Dynasty Owners get 20% of their Bench scoring added to their overall point total. Each team has the following players on their Bench right now.

Yorkshire Roses has a significant advantage right now with the Bench scoring and is projected to outscore New York’s Strongest at almost every Bench position. However, their 23.8-point Bench points advantage (69.1 to 45.3) only cuts New York’s Strongest lead by 4.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points.

The projections have New York’s Strongest back in the winner’s circle this week, but nothing is official until Monday Night Football is over. Check out the Tuesday recap article to see who actually won, if either one or both teams make their 2020 season debut on the Chase for the Ring Leaderboard and most importantly, if your team was good enough to make it there as well.

Conclusion

Please read the preview article each week. Maybe your team will be featured in the Match-Up of the Week – it’s going to definitely be someone other than New York’s Strongest next week. If you want it to be your team that is featured, then just tweet me (@SteveVT33) and check out next week’s preview to see if your matchup was chosen. Remember that there will be a recap article coming out every Tuesday and a preview article posted every Friday throughout the Dynasty Owner season. We will also have articles from Chris Wolf (@ckwolf21), Matt Morrison – The Jerk (@Dynastyjerk) and Jay Poundsee (@jaypoundsnfl) during the season as well. Follow all four of us plus Dynasty Owner (@Dynasty_Owner) on Twitter.

There will also be a weekly Tuesday Live YouTube podcast with the creator of Dynasty Owner and Dynasty Owner O.G. Paul Gabrail, Dynasty Owner CEO Tim Peffer and Seth Kerechanin, the voice of Dynasty Owner. The podcast series with myself and Dynasty Owner CEO Tim Peffer will continue with weekly videos that will be posted on the Dynasty Owner channel on YouTube and other places (iTunes, Spotify, Spreaker). You can catch up with older videos and tutorials there as well. Tune in to learn more about Dynasty Owner, see how our predictions did and help you set your weekly lineup. Subscribe to the YouTube channel and make sure to “Like” all the videos to help promote them. Dynasty Owner has crossed the 500 subscriber’s threshold on YouTube and thank you all for watching and listening. All of this great content is available to help you win your Dynasty Owner league and maybe become the winner of the 2020 Chase for the Ring! Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

NFL Week 1 Preview – Here We Go!

Author: Steven Van Tassel (@SteveVT33)

Football is back! Things were looking bleak a few months ago when all sports were shut down, but the NBA, NHL and MLB are all playing right now and here comes the NFL! There will be fewer fans in the stands (if any at all in certain places), but football will be on your TV starting with Thursday Night Football between the defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans. And Dynasty Owner is back for its second season, the first one with 12-team leagues, but still with real NFL salaries and a hard $110 million salary cap. To all of the returning Dynasty Owners, welcome back and thanks for playing again and reading this preview. For the new Dynasty Owners, thanks for joining us and let’s go over how we do this weekly preview article.

Every week of the regular season and playoffs, we’ll present a set of players 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 (you’re welcome to all of the people who hate kickers in fantasy football, particularly Kyle Webster). These won’t be the obvious choices for Starters, like go ahead and start Patrick Mahomes, Christian McCaffrey, Michael Thomas and Travis Kelce (as if you weren’t going to do that already if you have them), but guys who might 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. It’ll be a little bit harder without pre-season games to review, but we need to proceed without the benefit of that information.

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. For the first week of the season, we have a special Match-Up of the Week planned.

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 September 9th.

These Guys Should be Starters This Week

Usually, we look to see how my recommendations from the previous week worked out (Good, Bad or Just Ok), but seeing as this is Week 1, we don’t have a previous week to review. Instead, let’s take a look at how my 2019 season predictions at each position so everyone can judge whether or not to pay attention to these recommendations. There were no Week 1 or Week 17 predictions, so we just have 15 weeks of predictions.

  • QB: Good – 5 weeks (33%); Bad – 7 weeks (47%); Just Ok – 3 weeks (20%)
  • RB: Good – 7 weeks (47%); Bad – 6 weeks (40%); Just Ok – 2 weeks (13%)
  • WR: Good – 7 weeks (47%); Bad – 6 weeks (40%); Just Ok – 2 weeks (13%)
  • TE: Good – 5 weeks (33%); Bad – 7 weeks (47%); Just Ok – 3 weeks (20%)
  • All: Good – 24 weeks (40%); Bad – 26 weeks (43%); Just Ok – 10 weeks (17%)

Overall, an average performance in 2019 with two more Bad recommendations than Good ones. In addition to the overall stats, let the record show that there were two weeks with four Good recommendations (Week 3 with Jacoby Brissett, Frank Gore, Nelson Agholor and Greg Olsen and Week 13 with Mitchell Trubisky, Derrius Guice, Cole Beasley and Jack Doyle). Let’s get off to a good start in 2020 with four good recommendations of players who should be Starters this week.

Jimmy Garoppolo (QB – SF): In both games last year against Arizona, Jimmy G had over 40.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. In Week 9, he had 41.1 points and in Week 11, it was 46.9 points. It’s true that several 49ers WRs are banged up right now, but he had his best week of the 2019 season at home against Arizona in Week 11 with his #1 receiving option in George Kittle out injured. Please look at the numbers and don’t discount this recommendation based on my past presidency in the Jimmy Garoppolo Fan Club.

Tarik Cohen (RB – CHI): David Montgomery’s status for the season opening game versus Detroit is unknown, but he did suffer a groin injury back on August 26th and was expected to miss 2-4 weeks. If he is out or plays a limited number of snaps, that means more Tarik Cohen for the Bears. Cohen did well in two games against the Lions in 2019 (21.3 Dynasty Owner fantasy points combined) with one receiving TD. However, Montgomery also caught a receiving TD in one of the games against the Lions last year and they allowed eight receiving TDs to RBs in total all season (tied with Houston for the most in the NFL in 2019). Cohen could even pick up more rushing attempts this week with Montgomery’s injury. Cohen is a definite starter this week in either one of your RB spots or at the FLEX position.

DeSean Jackson (WR – PHI): With Alshon Jeffery and first round draft pick Jalen Reagor likely out for the Eagles Week 1 game against the Redskins, DeSean Jackson becomes the top WR in Philadelphia. And boy did Jackson love playing Week 1 versus his old football team last year. He had 35.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in Week 1 (8 receptions, 154 yards, 2 receiving TDs) against them and could be in line for similar production in the 2020 season opener. He is only owned in 36% of Dynasty Owner leagues, but if you took a chance on Jackson and his $9.3 million salary, this is the week to put him in your Starting lineup and see if he’s still worth it.

Jordan Reed (TE – SF): After 65 games over six seasons in Washington before missing the entire 2019 season with concussion issues, Jordan Reed is now George Kittle’s backup in San Francisco. Reed will be reunited with Coach Kyle Shanahan who was his offensive coordinator in his rookie season in Washington, one in which he had 45 receptions for 499 yards and 3 TDs in just 9 games. Still, he’s a backup and only owned in 17% of Dynasty Owner leagues, why should Dynasty Owners go out and pick Reed up off the Free Agent Auction and insert him into their Starting Lineup or Bench? Answer: It’s all about the matchup against the Arizona Cardinals who had the worst defense in the NFL in 2019 against TEs. They allowed an average of 19.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game to TEs last season. In Week 11, Kittle was out for the 49ers and Ross Dwelley scored 17.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points (4 receptions, 14 yards, 2 TDs) against the Cardinals. Plus the 49ers receiving corps are banged up and Kittle has been promoting the idea of using all four 49ers TEs at once (https://www.nbcsports.com/bayarea/49ers/george-kittle-wants-49ers-run-four-tight-end-sets-jordan-reed). Even if they just run a lot of two TE sets, Reed will be on the field a lot in Week 1. Obviously, you start Kittle this week, but feel comfortable putting Reed in your lineup as well.

These Guys Should Be on the Bench (or Practice Squad) This Week

Now it’s time to look at how my Bench recommendations from the previous week worked out (Good, Bad or Just Ok), but again seeing as this is Week 1, we have to take a look at how my 2019 season predictions fared at each position. Everyone can judge whether or not to pay attention to these 2020 Bench recommendations based on my 2019 performance. There were no Week 1 or Week 17 predictions, so we just have 15 weeks of predictions.

  • QB: Good – 6 weeks (40%); Bad – 4 weeks (27%); Just Ok – 5 weeks (33%)
  • RB: Good – 5 weeks (33%); Bad – 6 weeks (40%); Just Ok – 4 weeks (27%)
  • WR: Good – 5 weeks (33%); Bad – 5 weeks (33%); Just Ok – 5 weeks (33%)
  • TE: Good – 9 weeks (60%); Bad – 4 weeks (27%); Just Ok – 2 weeks (13%)
  • All: Good – 25 weeks (42%); Bad – 19 weeks (32%); Just Ok – 16 weeks (27%)

My Bench predictions were a little better than my Starter predictions. Bench predictions for TEs were where I shined the most with 60% Good recommendations. Like my Starter recommendations, I also had two weeks with four Good Bench recommendations in 2019 (Week 7 with Kyler Murray, Kerryon Johnson, Terry McLaurin and Jared Cook and Week 12 with Aaron Rodgers, Josh Jacobs, Amari Cooper and Gerald Everett). Let’s see if we can get off to a good start in 2020 with four good recommendations of players who should be sitting on the Bench or hanging out with the Practice Squad this week.

Aaron Rodgers (QB – GB): Rodgers doesn’t really like playing at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. He’s played four games there since the stadium opened in 2016. In 2017, he broke his collarbone and the other three games haven’t been a whole lot better than that. He has averaged 14.3 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in the three games he played at the stadium (not including 2017) with no more than 216 yards passing in a single game. He’s also had 1 TD pass twice and zero TD passes once. He did rush for a TD in 2016 when he scored 17.5 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. In 2018, it was 15.9 points and by last year, he was down to 9.5 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. He is only rostered in 34% of Dynasty Owner leagues, but to those owners with him on their team, leave him on the Bench or Practice Squad this week.

Kareem Hunt (RB – CLE): With an ADP of 60.2, Dynasty Owners drafted Hunt to either start in one of their RB slots or at least in the FLEX position. Hunt only played in eight games and in only two of them did he score less than 10.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Week 16 against the Ravens was one of them. Hunt got most of his Dynasty Owner fantasy points in the receiving game last year (71.5 of out 99.6 Dynasty Owner fantasy points). The Ravens were one of the best teams in the NFL last year at stopping RBs from catching the football, allowing only 60 receptions for 454 yards and 1 receiving TD by a RB. Even though it’s a new coach and offensive coordinator in Cleveland, the Ravens defense should be tough again this year, so leave Hunt on your Bench this week on the road against Baltimore.

Amari Cooper (WR – DAL): The Cowboys face the Rams on the road in their first game of the 2020 season with Cooper having missed four straight practices before practicing in full on Wednesday. That’s a series of bad things for Amari Cooper’s Dynasty Owners. As I’ve noted before, Cooper has been a Bench option playing on the road in his career as a Cowboy – averaging only 9.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in eight road games in 2019 and 8.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per road game in four road games for the Cowboys in 2018. He’s also playing against a top cornerback in Jalen Ramsey and back in Week 12 of the 2019 when he played against another top CB on the road (Stephen Gilmore of the Patriots), he was on the Bench These Guys list and got a Blutarsky (0.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points). Ramsey also held him to 2.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points (1 reception for 19 yards) in Week 15 last year. All of that means Cooper should be on your Dynasty Owner Bench (or Practice Squad if you’re stacked at WR) to start the 2020 season.

Evan Engram (TE – NYG): As the sixth TE off the board on average in Dynasty Owner drafts (ADP 84.3), you didn’t draft Engram to have him on your Bench. However, he’s also not going to be playing the Pittsburgh Steelers defense every week like he is in Week 1. Last year, the Steelers defense was tied for 24th place in receptions allowed to TEs and 29th in yards allowed. They did allow 8 receiving TDs to TEs, but two of them came in Week 2 against Seattle before they acquired safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. In general, it’s probably a good idea to sit players going up against the Steelers defense, so get Engram out of your Starting lineup and on your Bench.

Dynasty Owner Matchup of the Week – New York’s Strongest vs. VIP Club Dub

It’s time for our first Dynasty Owner Match-up of the Week for the 2020 season. While all of the Week 1 Match-ups are compelling and worthy of previewing, there’s really only one team that has to be mentioned here and that’s 2019 Chase for the Ring winner Eddie Driscoll and New York’s Strongest. He’s still the only undefeated player in Dynasty Owner history (if you didn’t play in 2019, you don’t qualify for that honor) and while Eddie has more than one team, he helped put together a league of beta users from 2019 to see if he could knock off the “best of the best” in Dynasty Owner. Will Eddie continue his winning streak, or will Anthony Heuther and his VIP Club Dub squad be the first Dynasty Owner team to defeat New York’s Strongest? At first glance, based on the exclusive Dynasty Owner scoring projections for each team’s current lineup, we see that VIP Club Dub is favored to win by 15.1 points (143.8 to 128.7).

So how is VIP Club Dub predicted to take down the Champ so decisively?  Let’s look each team’s Starters:

New York’s Strongest has the advantage at RB with Barkley and Gordon over Ingram and David Johnson, but VIP Club Dub overwhelms Eddie at TE by having Travis Kelce over T.J. Hockenson. That advantage gives VIP Club Dub an overall 8.9 point lead from his Starters.

On to the Bench where, as a reminder for new players, Dynasty Owners get 20% of their Bench scoring added to their overall point total. Each team has the following players on their Bench right now.

VIP Club Dub has a significant advantage right now with the Bench scoring and is projected to outscore New York’s Strongest at every position. The 31.5 point margin equals an extra 6.3 Dynasty Owner fantasy points for VIP Club Dub.

The projections have VIP Club Dub as the winner of this week’s Match-up of the Week, but nothing is official until Monday Night Football is over. Check out the Tuesday recap article to see who actually won and if your team was good enough to make it on to the first Chase for the Ring Leaderboard of 2020.

Conclusion

Please read the preview article each week, maybe your team will be featured in the Matchup of the Week. Remember that there will be a recap article coming out every Tuesday and a preview article posted every Friday throughout the Dynasty Owner season. We will also have articles from Chris Wolf (@ckwolf21), Matt Morrison – The Jerk (@Dynastyjerk) and Jay Poundsee (@jaypoundsnfl) during the season as well. Follow all four of us plus Dynasty Owner (@Dynasty_Owner) on Twitter.

There will also be a weekly Tuesday Live YouTube podcast with the creator of Dynasty Owner and Dynasty Owner O.G. Paul Gabrail, Dynasty Owner CEO Tim Peffer and Seth Kerechanin, the voice of Dynasty Owner. The podcast series with myself and Dynasty Owner CEO Tim Peffer will continue with weekly videos that will be posted on the Dynasty Owner channel on YouTube and other places (iTunes, Spotify, Spreaker). You can catch up with older videos and tutorials there as well. Tune in to learn more about Dynasty Owner, see how our predictions did and help you set your weekly lineup. Subscribe to the YouTube channel and make sure to “Like” all of the videos to help promote them. Dynasty Owner is rapidly closing in on 500 subscribers on YouTube and thank you all for watching and listening. All of this great content is available to help you win your Dynasty Owner league and maybe become the winner of the 2020 Chase for the Ring!

Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

Roster Roundup – Round Eight: AFC West

Taking A Dive Into The Rosters From Around The League

Author: Chris Wolf

This time of year is typically the time when teams, trainers and agents hype up their players. We know how the world has changed in recent months and the NFL is no different in its approach to returning to “normalcy”. With the news of NFL staff and players testing positive for the Coronavirus, fantasy news is taking a backseat. As a result, fantasy players are missing out on the typical hyperbole surrounding pre-season roster news and notes.

In this series we will look at who’s who on rosters and how that may help in your drafts and early waivers.

Each week we will examine a division’s skill position current roster and predictive depth chart heading into training camp to see how that relates to their fantasy outlook.

Denver Broncos

HC: Vic Fangio

OC: Pat Shurmur

QB: Drew Lock, Jeff Driskel

RB: Melvin Gordon, Phillip Lindsay, Royce Freeman, Andrew Beck

WR: Cortland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, DaeSean Hamilton, Tim Patrick, KJ Hamler, Tyrie Cleveland

TE: Noah Fant, Nick Vannett, Albert Okwuegbunam, Jake Butt

This offense is very young. This defense is very experienced. If the two can come together, the Denver Broncos can make some noise in this division. Drew Lock flashed promise in his inaugural season as the Bronco’s signal-caller and brings excitement to this extremely young group. In his 5 career games, Lock posted 204 ypg in an offense that didn’t appear to be quite ready for him. His yards per attempt are sure to increase from 6.5 a clip and his 1.4 TD to 0.6 INT would extrapolate to 22.4/9.6 over a full season. That was without an improved offensive line and new weapons at RB, WR, and TE. Even though John Elway didn’t exactly give his then rookie a boost of confidence after going 4-1 to end the season, Lock is back as the starter and is in a fantastic position to prove that he was worth Denver’s no.42 overall pick in last year’s draft.

The running back position is deep and returns a good amount of game experience. Melvin Gordon is the new toy in Lock’s toy chest, and he should receive the bulk of the snaps. He is the best receiver in the backfield and after his notorious zero TD rookie season, he has scored at least eight rushing touchdowns over the last 4 years. If you listen to coach speak, Fangio designates both Gordon and Lindsay as equal starters, but reason would tell you the splits would favor the more productive Gordon. Lindsay is no slouch and he has flashed in his first two years in the league. In both years he ran for over 1,000 yards and recorded exactly 35 receptions in both years. The receptions may come down, but the yards don’t necessarily have to. This team wants to run the ball, but it has enough talent in the passing game to keep the defenses honest. It is within the realm of possibility that the team could support two 1,000-yard rushers in Gordon and Lindsay. The odd man out appears to be Royce Freeman. Freeman has seen more stacked boxes in the last two years than anyone else in football. He is a solid talent and a superior pass blocker to Lindsay so he may still have some value on your bench.

The 2020 draft was kind to Lock by granting him two dynamic receivers. Jerry Jeudy “fell” to pick number 15 where the Denver Broncos pounced and selected the best route runner to come out of college in years. Jeudy was running NFL caliber routes in Alabama embarrassing most of the competition along the way. He slots into the starting line up across from 2019 breakout Courtland Sutton. Sutton was near QB proof posting a 72/1112/6-line catching passes from the likes of Brandon Allen, Joe Flacco, and Drew Lock. After grading out as PFF’s #16 wide receiver, Sutton is a safe bet to lead this team once again in most receiving categories with a much-improved supporting cast around him.  DaeSean Hamilton (28rec/297yds/1TD) and Tim Patrick (16rec/218yds/0TD’s) return as rotational players in the group but the other rising rookie is KJ Hamler. Hamler’s second-round selection was overshadowed by Jeudy’s but do not let that dull the fact that he will be an important part of this offense. The Penn State product is a smaller statured player, but he is the definition of dynamic. He is a slippery route runner that can turn a defender around and then run past his teammates. Sutton and Jeudy will be the volume play but Hamler will take the lid off defenses. Noah Fant was a pre-draft darling this fantasy season. He will get the snaps to keep him on the field due to his above-average blocking and route running. He is not the most polished route runner where he takes some time getting out of his breaks, but he can run past 90% of the linebackers on any given Thursday, Sunday, or Monday. His upper-level speed for a TE will make him an intriguing fantasy TE play in 2020. His rookie line mate Albert Okwuegbunam is a sure-handed possession type receiving TE who has been used to get the sure completions instead of big explosive plays. His big frame will be a welcome addition for Lock when he needs to find his chain moving target.

Kansas City Chiefs

HC: Andy Reid

OC: Eric Bienemy

QB: Patrick Mahomes, Chad Henne

RB: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Darrel Williams, Darwin Thompson, Anthony Sherman

WR: Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins, Mecole Hardman, Demarcus Robinson, Byron Pringle, Marcus Kemp

TE: Travis Kelce, Nick Keizer, Ricky Seals-Jones, Deon Yelder

The Super Bowl champs return for another run at the title and still have a lot of kept cogs in place. On offense that specifically means all-world QB Patrick Mahomes, the elite TE Travis Kelce, and the self-proclaimed fastest man in the NFL-Tyreek Hill. Sprinkle in one of the best running backs in the 2020 draft and you have the makings of yet another elite Kansas City offense.

Mahomes struck gold in 2020 with his 10yr $450million salary to pave the way for many championship runs to come. Still only 24 years old and only 2 full years of experience under his belt, Mahomes is already in the conversation of greatness. Go back and look at his stats and you will see that he never really had a bad game. Sure, there were “okay” games in there but never a bad one. In his 31 career starts, he has amassed 9412 yards, 76 TD’s to just 19 INT’s. His adjusted completion percentage was good enough for 6th in 2019 and 5th in 2018 among QB’s that started at least 10 games. His overall passing grade (PFF) was 6th in 2019 and 2nd in 2018. To sum it up, 2018 was clearly his better statistical season (he also played 2.5 more games) but his 2019 efficiency rate was higher, and he just happened to lead his team to the championship podium.

The nearly Super Bowl MVP Damien Williams has decided to opt-out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19. In comes 1st round pick, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, the dynamic pass-catching running back out of national champion LSU. CEH garnered first-team All-ACC accolades after rushing for 1,414 yards and 16 TD’s during his breakout junior year. He will not kill you with straight-line speed evidenced by his 4.60 40 yd time, but he may make you miss in space thanks to his fantastic balance and footwork. His backfield mate, Darrel Williams is the better pass-blocking back and the more experienced of the two. He figures to work alongside CEH in the early parts of the season to allow the rookie time to acclimate to the NFL. Last year’s sleeper darling, Darwin Thompson was good enough to be active over LeSean McCoy in the Super Bowl as well as being kept as the third man in this backfield.

The freak himself, Tyreek Hill will enter this season a more rounded NFL receiver. Opposing teams now must defend more than just a straight-line burner, reportedly he spent the offseason with a receiving coach to work on the intricacies of the position. He seemed to adjust during the playoffs and gained steam as the final tournament wore on. The Texans did everything legal in football to Michael Jordan him out of the game plan with him coming away with 3 catches for 41 yards on four targets in the Divisional round. He followed that up next week with a

 7-67-2 TD’s performance against the Titans and then 9-105 in the Super Bowl. He suffered through multiple injuries in 2019 but did not have any off-field issues which was positive for the 26-year-old. He will give you more non-WR1 weeks than live up to his draft capital, but he is an elite weapon that can score as much as two WR’s in any given week.

Sammy Watkins is the number 2 WR and the 27-year-old former 1st rounder has had an interesting career. Entering his 7th season, he has flashed brilliance at times while playing for three different teams, but consistency has always eluded him. Not being “the no.1 guy” has assuredly helped but he works more into a receiving rotation in the WR corps and that may just be what suits him best. Mecole Hardman is the young dynamo speedster that was used as a situational mismatch in his rookie year. Like Hill early in his career, his game is built on speed and not volume. He is a true weapon in the return game as well as downfield evidenced by his 26-538-6 td stat line in 2019. Demarcus Robinson rounds out the top four receivers of this exciting group. Robinson had two solid games filling in for Hill last season and returns to the team on a 1 year $2.3million contract as a coaching staff’s favorite.

The actual number 1 receiving option in this offense is TE Travis Kelce. Out of the top four receivers mentioned, Kelce had 49% of the team’s target share when comparing the five of them. That is high volume for the tight end position. Kelce is a unicorn and his game changing ability has been demonstrated time and again as he always appears to come up big just when the chiefs need him. He is a sure-fire top 2 TE in the league and is not going anywhere with his 4 yr $57 million salary. There isn’t much behind him on the depth chart nor does there have to be for the way this offense operates. If Kelce is viewed as a number one receiver and not a $14 million TE, his Dynasty Owner salary becomes that much more palatable.

Las Vegas Raiders

HC: Jon Gruden

OC: Greg Olson

QB: Derek Carr, Marcus Mariota, Nathan Peterman

RB: Josh Jacobs, Jalen Richard, Devontae Booker, Alec Ingold

WR: Henry Ruggs III, Hunter Renfrow, Bryan Edwards, Nelson Agholor, Zay Jones, Rico Gaffer

TE: Darren Waller, Foster Moreau, Jason Witten, Derek Carrier

Chucky is back and the black and silver have a different look to their passing game this year. Gruden is exceptional at scripting his plays and allowing the offensive momentum to stack series by series. The knock on him is in-game adjustments if something was to go completely awry. He and GM Mike Mayock went out and fortified their back-up QB position with former no.2 overall pick Marcus Mariota (currently on IR) and kept the great Nathan Peterman on the roster who is now serving as the direct back-up to Carr. Carr is not as conservative as he is efficient, especially since Gruden came to town. He is the epitome of a “Steady Eddie” QB that will not lose you many fantasy matchups, but he also won’t win you many either. He rarely misses any games (2 out of 96) he always hovers around 4,000 yards a season and recently right around 20 TD’s. He is a much better real-life QB rather than a fantasy one. Hopefully, you will not be relying on him for any other reason than a bye week.

For many, Josh Jacobs ($2.98m) was the number one back in the NFL draft last year. He did not have a bad year by any stretch, in his 13 games played he totaled 1150 yards and 7 TD’s. The mini let down was his use in the passing games tallying only 20 receptions. The Raiders claimed to want to get him more involved but the consistent addition of pass-catching backs to the roster makes you take pause. He is a clear bet to receive over 275 touches in both the run and pass game and is a locked-in solid starter for your team. His range of outcomes could place him anywhere in the RB5-RB14 range this year. Jalen Richard returns to his same expected role of a breather back that is used in the hurry-up as well and won’t add any stand-alone value as long as Jacobs is upright. Booker is the third back that is also in the third-down-back-mold that totaled 9 rushing yards in 16 games last year. Jacobs offers elite volume for your team and he should eat this year.

The Receiving corps got some upgrades this year and it’s something to be excited about. Ruggs was taken at #12 overall and Gruden’s selection of him would make Al Davis smile from ear to ear. Gruden covets speed at the Z position and Ruggs has speed to burn. He only logged 98 career catches in the crowded Alabama passing attack, but he did a lot with a little. His 4.27 speed will bring even more heat to the desert when Las Vegas opens Allegiant Stadium.  Lining up across from him will be fellow rookie Bryan Edwards ($1.17m) who is quickly becoming “Carr’s guy”. Edwards had a stellar four-year career at South Carolina while logging the third-most receptions in SEC history with 324. He is a sure-handed receiver with nice hands that do not allow the ball to come to his body. He impressed so much with his after the catch ability that he was also utilized in the screen game as well as getting backfield snaps in college.

Renfrow ($708k) had put together a nice rookie season with 49 grabs on 71 targets for 605yds and 4 TD’s. He is an ideal complement to the two rookies who will be starting outside and the three of them will make for an interesting trio to watch develop over the years. At TE, Darren Waller returns and looks to follow up on his 2019 Cinderella season. Waller hung 90 catches on 1145 yards on the season but with just 3 TD’s. He is an athletic freak out of GA Tech that took a few years to come around, but he finally popped in his age 26 season as the team’s number one target in the passing game. Joining him is the one-foot-in-the-broadcasting-booth veteran Jason Witten. Witten missed playing the game so much in 2018, he traded his toupee for a helmet and vacated his position calling games. He was knowingly brought in for his locker room leadership and we should all be spared of watching the once stud TE lumber around the field.

Los Angeles Chargers

HC:  Anthony Lynn

OC: Shane Steichen

QB: Tyrod Taylor, Justin Herbert, Easton Stick

RB: Austin Ekeler, Justin Jackson, Joshua Kelley

WR: Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Jaylen Guyton, KJ Hill, Joe Reed, Jason Moore

TE: Hunter Henry, Virgil Green, Stephen Anderson, Donald Parham

This team was built for defense and it shows on offense. Head Coach Anthony Lynn wants to run the ball in the worst way to set up the intermediate passing attack. They did make some changes on the offensive line, but the issue is these are a lot of “name guys” along the offensive front and their grades do not exactly spell production. Tyrod Taylor is a well-respected player that is a bargain as a QB2-3 at just $5.5million.  Although he is just a 2020 placeholder for Justin Herbert, Taylor offers solid rushing ability and an underrated deep ball touch. Herbert is the future leader of this franchise and it would probably do him best to learn for the entire season ala Mahomes and Alex Smith in 2017. Herbert is a big-armed guy that can also move when needed as evidenced by his 4.68 speed at 6’6” 236lbs. Herbert has elite arm talent but will need to clean up his fumbling issue that plagued him in his four years at Oregon.

This backfield timeshare will be interesting to watch unfold. As a fantasy community we view Austin Ekeler as the clear-cut starter, and he is being drafted as the workhorse back. But those closer to the situation, especially the beat writers are alluding to a much more three headed attack approach as opposed to a bellcow and two backups. Ekeler should absolutely be the more valuable back to have rostered especially for his ability to vacuum up almost any incoming pass. But I would not dismiss Justin Jackson and Joshua Kelley from having a bigger role than what we are sensing. Jackson is one of those do-it-all guys that coaching staffs love and Kelley has been labeled as a “violent runner” by his defensive teammates. All three can play on passing downs but that’s where Ekeler shines. Hovering around 550 yards rushing for each of the last two years, he took a massive leap forward in 2019 going from 53 targets to 108 resulting in 92 catches for 993 yards and 8 TD’s. Those are WR1 numbers that you are getting from a running back.

Keenan Allen ($20m) returns with a chip on his shoulder in that he feels he is not viewed as elite by the public and media. He picked Twitter fights with more than one wide receiver striving to prove his point. Whether he is elite, or not Allen has put together a strong resume especially since returning from back to back injury plagued seasons. He has worn the “injury” tag for the last few years because he had two freak injuries in consecutive years (2015 lacerated kidney, 2016 torn ACL). Since then he has put together 3 straight campaigns averaging 6 touchdowns, 1263 yards, and 101 receptions while playing in every game. Those numbers are solid if not elite. Mike Williams ($4.9m) is the big bodied down field receiver just starting to come into his own. He has been dinged up, often carrying the questionable tag but he is a beast when he’s healthy. He hasn’t quite been a volume receiver as of yet and that doesn’t appear to change in 2020 but hopefully, he can return to his TD scoring ways of 2018 where he cashed in 43 receptions for 10 touchdowns. That success rate was surely due for regression, but it appears the regression gods went a bit too far by only granting him 2 touchdowns on 49 receptions. When going three wide, Allen will find his home in the slot opening the outside for second year player Jalen Guyton. Guyton ($540k) brings another dimension to the receiving trio by offering his 4.37 forty speed on the outside. Guyton was a former 4-star recruit that had two total targets and zero receptions in his rookie year. Joe Reed and KJ Hill are promising young talents with little fantasy value in this run first team.

Hunter Henry ($10.6m) will be playing under the franchise tag for the 2020 season and both sides have shown real interest in continuing their relationship after this year. The 25-year-old Henry is a fine tight end that has seen volume targets that have increased every year, but he has a hard time staying healthy. He has yet to play a complete season, but he claims this year is the best he’s felt so far.  His reception totals have gone from 36 to 45 to 55 in the last few seasons so there’s hope for a 50-60 catch season if the trend were to continue. Behind him is Virgil Green who is a fine #2 TE in real life football but offers zero fantasy appeal.

That wraps up our 8-part Roster Roundup series. We hope you enjoyed it! Now to enjoy some football!

Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

Roster Roundup – Round Seven: NFC West

Taking A Dive Into The Rosters From Around The League

Author: Chris Wolf

This time of year is typically the time when teams, trainers and agents hype up their players. We know how the world has changed in recent months and the NFL is no different in its approach to returning to “normalcy”. With the news of NFL staff and players testing positive for the Coronavirus, fantasy news is taking a backseat. As a result, fantasy players are missing out on the typical hyperbole surrounding pre-season roster news and notes.

In this series we will look at who’s who on rosters and how that may help in your drafts and early waivers.

Each week we will examine a division’s skill position current roster and predictive depth chart heading into training camp to see how that relates to their fantasy outlook.

Arizona Cardinals

HC: Kliff Kingsbury

OC: Kliff Kingsbury

QB: Kyler Murray, Brett Hundley, Chris Streveler

RB: Kenyan Drake, Chase Edmonds, Eno Benjamin

WR: Larry Fitzgerald, DeAndre Hopkins, Christian Kirk, Andy Isabella, KeeSean Johnson, Trent Sherfield

TE: Maxx Williams, Dan Arnold, Darrell Daniels

Coach Kliff Kingsbury returns to what should be a much-improved offense. All eyes were on Arizona to showcase Kingsbury’s spread offense in 2019 but finished with the league’s 23rd ranked offense (per PFF). 2020 looks to be improved with a revamped offensive line that might be a better fit for the wider splits necessary for the quicker pass sets. Kyler Murray is an exciting young play caller that has a solid arm and athletic wheels. The questions about his size have been put to rest but his main drawback was his tendency to hold the ball too long in this quick tempo attack. He was sacked a league best 48 times while being charged with 23 of them as self-induced.  Murray is known to be a smart competitor and will surely progress through his reads much quicker in his sophomore year. His 20/3722/12 was a good indication of his passing chops while he was also called upon to use his sub 4.4 speed on the 65 designed runs called for him. He finished with 93 total rushes for 544 and 4 scores. He has been a very highly targeted pick in Dynasty Owner drafts due to his dual-threat ability and an $8.8 million salary.

Kenyan Drake was stranded on the Island of Misfit Toys in the beginning portion of the 2019 season until Miami traded Drake to the Cardinals in late October for a conditional 6th round pick. The 2016 3rd round selection out of Alabama never looked comfortable in either regime in South Beach but seems to be an ideal fit in this wide-open offense where he is able to work in space. Despite him ending camp in a walking boot, Drake has been a reliable player playing 62 out of a possible 64 games. Never having more than 170 NFL carries in a season, the 26-year-old is a solid bet to return top 12ish RB numbers if he continues to be the lead dog. His challenger is Chase Edmonds who is the clear number 2 that might be a number 1 on some NFL teams. Remember back to the first week of October and David Johnson was active/not active and Arizona unleashed Edmonds for 126 yards and 3 touchdowns. Edmonds looked to be on the road to fantasy stardom, but he got dinged up in that game and with two injured running backs, GM Steve Keim was forced to make the trade for Drake. Edmonds is a great depth piece with league winning potential if anything were to cause Drake to miss time. In just his second year, his $728k price tag is very intriguing. Eno Benjamin was a second-round selection in this year’s draft that has carved out a role for himself on special teams allowing him to stay on as the no.3 back to both Drake and Edmonds.

On paper this receiver group looks like fantasy gold. There is the sure-handed new-comer Deandre Hopkins that was acquired in a laughable trade, the legend that is Larry Fitzgerald who enters his 17th season, former 2nd round potential breakout Christian Kirk and the speed demon out of UMASS, Andy Isabella who was also a 2nd round selection. Murray has plenty of weapons to work with and he himself has predicted his top three receivers to all eclipse the 1,000-yard mark this season. Although not probable since no Cardinal receiver broke the 1,000-yard milestone last year, it speaks volumes to the confidence this QB has entering 2020. The TE position is not exactly a prominent position in Kingsbury’s scheme, although it does hold some real-life value. Incumbent starter Maxx Williams appears to have been edged out by new TE Dan Arnold in the media but remains at the top of the depth chart. Arnold is a 6’6” 220lb big receiver that’s listed as a TE who is a sure handed third down and red zone threat for Murray’s Cardinals. Although he might not provide much for fantasy production, he is someone to keep in mind at just $615k.

Los Angeles Rams

HC: Sean McVay

OC: Kevin O’Connell

QB: Jared Goff, John Wolford, Bryce Perkins

RB: Cam Akers, Malcolm Brown, Darrell Henderson, Xavier Jones

WR: Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, Josh Reynolds, Van Jefferson, Trishton Jackson, Nsimba Webster

TE: Tyler Higbee, Gerald Everett, Brycen Hopkins, Johnny Mundt

In 2018 wonder boy Sean McVay caught the NFL with its pants down and the team rode it all the way to the Super Bowl. In 2019, NFL defenses caught up to the Ram’s offense and it seemed that the adjustments were very slow to develop for McVay and company. Goff was rewarded for his 2018 play with a 4 year $134 million which added to the odd salary situation this team has found itself in. With a lack of quality depth and the non-investment in the offensive line, a subpar front seven except for Aaron Donald and the odd handling of Todd Gurley, Clay Matthews and Brandon Cooks’ contracts, Los Angeles has yet to find its way out the murkiness that is their salary cap conundrum. 

Goff is not an elite NFL talent, but he is a much better QB than he was given credit for in his “down’ 2019. I’m sure Goff would like to forget his 78-yard performance against San Francisco in week 6, his 173 for zero TD’s against Chicago in week 11 and his week 12 line of 0/212/2 against Baltimore on Monday Night. He took a step backwards in almost every statistical category, but you have to think, how much of that can actually be attributed to his play. The O-Line was one of the most porous in the league, the running game was Jekyll and Hyde all season long and the defense found it difficult to keep points off the opposing team’s scoreboard. 2020’s Rams offseason chatter appears to continue with more two tight end looks as they began to have success with at the end of last season and with a renewed focus on the run game.

Cam Akers enters as the expected leader in backfield touches with Darrell Henderson and veteran Malcom Brown chipping in situationally.  Brown may get the ceremonial “start” in the beginning and if Henderson’s hamstring checks out, he’ll get his touches, but Akers should prove to be the three down talent that is much needed for this team. Akers could not have had a worse offensive line than he did at Florida State and hopefully, the Rams O-Line won’t have him running for his life. Akers is a very talented runner that you must be patient within his rookie campaign. The other backs will get theirs but Akers’ talent as a runner and receiver will prove it hard to keep him off the field.

Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp are the 1 and 1a receiving duo that many are excited to see put up consistent fantasy points this season. Woods is the unquestioned leader and is the more consistent of the two but Kupp’s ceiling is higher at this stage of their careers. The younger Kupp demolished Cincinnati in the London game but then only put together 239 total yards over a six-game pace. This was absolutely maddening for fantasy players that rostered Kupp to only hear McVay site alignment changes and personnel adjustment as the cause. Woods’ $6.8 million cap makes for a solid potential WR1 and Kupp’s $958k salary is extremely appetizing. Behind them on the depth chart are Josh Reynolds and Van Jefferson. Reynolds figures to be the WR3 to start the year and Van Jefferson is a solid dynasty hold for when they move on from either Kupp or Woods in two years. The tight end group has two starters both capable of being TE1’s on most NFL teams. Tyler Higbee ($7.25m) has a year of NFL experience on Gerald Everett but both decided to have their own breakout seasons in 2019. Although Higbee is the one everyone has talked about, it was actually Everett who started to shine first. Everett’s first nine games boasted a stat line of 37/408/2 until a knee injury sapped him of some of his athleticism. Higbee then cut into both his and Kupp’s target share and is now considered a top 8 TE in fantasy. Both should be rostered but at $1.5 million, Everett is a very interesting stash.

San Francisco 49ers

HC: Kyle Shanahan

OC: Kyle Shanahan

QB: Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Mullens, CJ Bethard

RB: Raheem Mostert, Tevin Coleman, Jerick McKinnon, Jeffery Wilson,

Kyle Juszczyk

WR: Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, Kendrick Bourne, Richie James, Dante Pettis, Trent Taylor

TE: George Kittle, Jordan Reed, Charlie Woerner, Ross Dwelley

The Super Bowl silver medalists return most of their key personnel to make another run at the Lombardi Trophy in 2020. Shannan has done a terrific job at optimizing his player’s skills to his scheme and GM John Lynch has helped him by stocking the cupboard with quality talent. Jimmy Garoppolo returns under center and is the unquestioned starter after a brief 48-hour flirtation with Tom Brady. Garoppolo might not go out and put the team on his back and win you games on talent alone but he is a respectable quarterback that won’t cause you to lose many either. Whether he is a product of Shannan’s system or he is actually a good QB in the NFL is debatable, he took the team to the Super Bowl behind an absolutely dominant run game. Shanahan veered from his traditional outside zone scheme and incorporated way more counters and power run elements than ever before. Raheem Mostert shined down the stretch and transitioned his 5-team journeyman career into being a revered name in fantasy circles. The 28-year-old parlayed 137 attempts into 772 yards while tallying 8 scores. Known for his speed and vision, his 3.72 yards after contact was good for a top 16 ranking in the league. Tevin Coleman is the “bigger-bodied” part of this committee that will most absurdly siphon starts from Moestert throughout the season. Coleman is not an especially special talent, but he is a Shannan favorite that knows his system back to front. Jerrick McKinney hasn’t played the game in 3 years but is now expected to be inserted in as a speedy change-of-pace satellite back. Jeff Wilson is a special teamer and occasional touchdown vulture that may break your heart if you roster Mostert or Coleman.

George Kittle is the unquestioned No.1 receiver on this team but San Francisco boasts some quality young talent at the wide receiver position.  Led by the physical Deebo Samuel ($1.8m), this young group offers a lot of potential if they can just stay out of the trainer’s room. Riddled with training camp injuries, the early season picture may not be as bad as once believed. Samuel is looking good in his recovery from his Jones fracture and Richie James looks like he too will be available soon. Reports have come out that Aiyuk was having a fantastic early camp and established a solid rapport with Garoppolo before being temporarily sidelined due to a hamstring strain. His game likens Samuels’ but with a bit deeper threat potential. Together, they should make for a solid complement to Kittle. Kendrick Bourne is in his last year of his contract ($3.26m) and the intriguing Jalen Hurd continues to be a dynasty stash after losing out on two straight seasons.

Kittle comes in at a $15 million salary but it is hard to find a player that is more well-rounded. His overall skill set allows him to be on the field in all situations which is exactly what you crave from your TE position. A breakdown of his total snaps illustrates just how valuable he is to this franchise:

  • Passing Snaps= 498
  • Rushing Snaps= 477
  • Backfield Snaps= 25
  • Inline Snaps= 728
  • Slot Snaps= 131
  • Wideout Snaps= 91

This is a fantasy dream for this position and is well worth the investment. Jordan Reed is the other TE of note that adds a veteran depth piece that can also line up all over the field and create mismatch problems for defenses.

Seattle Seahawks

HC: Pete Carroll

OC: Brian Schottenheimer

QB: Russell Wilson, Geno Smith

RB: Chris Carson, Carlos Hyde, Rashaad Penny, DeeJay Dallas. Travis Homer

WR: Tyler Lockett, DK Metcalf, Philip Dorsett, David Moore, Freddie Swain, Josh Gordon

TE: Will Dissly, Greg Olsen, Luke Wilson, Colby Parkinson

The $35 million per year Russel Wilson enters his age 31 season and might have the best overall receiving talent around him. The annoyingly run first team has the ability to compete with the upper half of the league in the passing game for the first time in years. Wilson’s stud plays come from plays that are outside designed plays where his athleticism allows him to buy time where he’s able to drop dimes in his receiver’s hands. He has a well-balanced receiving corps with a fine mix of down field threats and physical route runners. He is undoubtedly a high end QB1 that has the ability to be the overall QB1 in any given year.

The aforementioned run game is the meat and potatoes of this offensive scheme. The O-Line is not especially dominant, but they do their job well enough by wearing you down by sheer volume of run plays. Chris Carson is the leader in this backfield and will not only make you miss in space, but he will also run you over if given the chance. The former 7th rounder is just 25 years old and has declared himself to be 100% healed from his fractured hip. He projects to be a high volume back and barring injury, could see 250-270 carries as the near workhorse back. If you can handle his fumbles (7, losing 4 in 2019) his $616k salary is a steal for this volume back that would make a fine RB2. Backing him up will be Carlos Hyde that had a bit of a resurgence last year in Houston. Hyde is more than a placeholder for Rashaad Penny to back up Carson, he should certainly be involved in rotating series as Seattle is known to do. Rookie DeeJay Dallas and Travis Homer are both solid pass catchers that should see the field in hurry up and passing down situations.

Leading the WR’s are Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf. Lockett was setting fantasy on fire before being limited by an injury. His 82/1057/8 stats don’t demonstrate how boom or bust he was but there were several games where he just didn’t show up. His injury limitations enabled rookie DK Metcalf to show how he can be an Alpha receiver and lead this team as the WR1. At 6’4” 229lbs, the former 2nd rounder has drawn comparisons to Dez Bryant because of his domination at the catch point but his 4.33 40 time puts him in a completely separate class. Metcalf looked like a man amongst boys at times and is a sure-fire starter for your fantasy team. Philip Dorsett is asked to run a simpler route tree then he did in New England which is a positive sign for this speedy deep threat. Dave Moore returns as a sure-handed route runner and Josh Gordon returns to ignite everyone’s memories from his last productive season in 2013.

Will Dissly returns as Wilson’s favorite seem-stretching target 10 months removed from his Achilles tear. Before his injury in November he was producing low end TE1 numbers converting 27 targets to 23 catches for 262 yards and 4 touchdowns. The third-year player will be a co-starter with the newly signed Greg Olsen. Olsen comes into his age 35 season after four years in Chicago and 9 years in Carolina. He will reportedly be a big part of this offense and could offer some sneaky good fantasy weeks. At 35 years old and a $7 million salary, he figures to be widely available if you are in a pinch for a TE. 

We hope that you enjoyed this article. Check back in a few days for the AFC West roundup!

Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

Roster Roundup – Round Six: NFC East

Taking A Dive Into The Rosters From Around The League

Author: Chris Wolf

This time of year is typically the time when teams, trainers and agents hype up their players. We know how the world has changed in recent months and the NFL is no different in its approach to returning to “normalcy”. With the news of NFL staff and players testing positive for the Coronavirus, fantasy news is taking a backseat. As a result, fantasy players are missing out on the typical hyperbole surrounding pre-season roster news and notes.

In this series we will look at who’s who on rosters and how that may help in your drafts and early waivers.

Each week we will examine a division’s skill position current roster and predictive depth chart heading into training camp to see how that relates to their fantasy outlook.

Dallas Cowboys

HC: Mike McCarthy

OC: Kellen Moore

QB: Dak Prescott, Andy Dalton, Clayton Thorson, Ben DiNucci

RB: Ezekiel Elliot, Tony Pollard, Rico Dowdle, Darius Anderson

WR: Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, CeeDee Lamb, Devin Smith, Ventell Bryant, Cedrick Wilson, Aaron Parker, Tevin Jones, Noah Brown

TE: Blake Jarwin, Dalton Schultz, Blake Bell, Cole Hikutini, Charlie Taumoepeau, Sean McKeon

Jason Garrett departs after 9 years at the helm and is replaced by former Packers cast-off Mike McCarthy. While taking a year off from coaching, McCarthy spent his time updating his approach to coaching and worked on becoming a “modern football coach”. He intends to keep Kellen Moore as the primary play-caller and adapt to Moore’s system instead of installing his own. Ranking number 1 in 2019 total offense with 6,904 yards it would be silly to fix what ain’t broken.

Dakota Prescott put together an MVP caliber campaign in his 4th year and has been blessed with even better weapons in 2020. Prescott set career bests with 4902 yards and 30 touchdowns as well as improving on completions and passer rating. Prescott faces an extremely passer friendly schedule for the first 8 weeks of the season before Dallas plays Pittsburgh and then Minnesota after the bye week. Prescott should be counted on for QB1 production for most of the season and you can safely wager he will return top 6 QB upside once again. Behind Prescott is former Bengal, Andy Dalton. This signing was extremely smart for both parties and was quite underrated when reported. Dalton has been a QB1 in fantasy with less overall weapons at his disposal and could very well return to fantasy starter status if anything were to happen to Prescott.

Ezekiel Elliot ($15M) is well entrenched in the conversation of elite running backs of the last decade. He seems as if he has been around longer than he has because he’s been so productive since the first moment he stepped on the field. The recently turned 25-year-old is absolutely outstanding in every facet of the game and salary aside, I really couldn’t fault anyone for arguing that he’s a better all-around running back than Saquon Barkley. The depth chart behind Elliot is rather slim except for the electric Tony Pollard. Something is in the water in Memphis because they keep producing lightning quick, slippery backs such as Pollard, Darrell Henderson, and Antonio Gibson.  Pollard ($796K) is one of those guys that can line up all over the field to create a mismatch with the defense. Much has been said from the Dallas coaching staff about Pollard’s usage in 2020 and we can hope that he offers low-end flex play any given week or high-end RB1-2 play if Zeke were to miss any time.

Amari Cooper leads this triumvirate of stud wide receivers that will surely give opposing teams nightmares all season long. Cooper faded down the stretch last season, but he still amassed 79 receptions for 1189 yards and 8 td’s. If you can see past his 5 yr./$100 million salary, then he is a solid WR2 for your fantasy team. He will give you boom weeks, but he will also give you bust weeks, specifically against elite corners that will shadow cover. Unfortunately, he draws one of the few CB’s that will shadow cover in week one in the Ram’s Jalen Ramsey. This type of coverage will open up budding WR2 Michael Gallup. Gallup weighs in at just $880,000 a year and is a fantastic pivot for those that went RB/QB heavy in early rounds of their drafts. He showed WR2 value and even outscored the “great” OBJ in two fewer games played. That brings us to ultra-rookie receiver CeeDee Lamb. The Cowboys absolutely crushed this year’s draft and it all started with the selection of the Oklahoma product in the first round. Lamb dominated with a 62/1,327/14 line in his final collegiate year and many had him as the 1st receiver to be selected in this year’s draft. Along with TE Blake Jarwin and possibly Elliot, Lamb projects to be a huge benefactor of the 190 vacated targets (2nd in NFL) and 1713 vacated air yards (also 2nd in NFL). Speedster Devin Smith rounds out the fourth spot on the depth chart.

Jason Witten has taken his dad running style to Las Vegas which leaves his 83 targets on the table for Blake Jarwin to scoop up. Jarwin’s $5.5 million salary is modest for the production he may post in this high-flying offense and his skill set as a TE will most assuredly keep him off the line and have him tearing down seems and managing the middle of the field for Prescott. There is very little competition for targets behind him with blocking TE’s Dalton Schultz and Blake Bell rounding out the roster.

New York Giants

HC: Joe Judge

OC: Jason Garrett

QB: Daniel Jones, Colt McCoy, Cooper Rush, Alex Tanney

RB: Saquon Barkley, Dion Lewis, Wayne Gallman, Javon Leake, Sandro Platzgummer, Elijhaa Penny

WR: Sterling Shephard, Golden Tate, Darius Slayton, Corey Coleman, David Sills V, Derrick Dillion, Binjimen Victor

TE: Evan Engram, Kaden Smith, Levine Toilolo, Erc Tomlinson, Rysen John

The NY Giants usher in a new era led by HC Joe Judge and OC Jason Garrett and this should be a fun one. Judge has made an immediate impact by making his coaches take laps with the players, taping tennis balls to players hands and removing the red no contact jersey from the former 6th overall pick in the 2109 draft. Enough about the stellar coaching, now on to the players. Daniel Jones had an impressive rookie campaign and the stat line might not actually reflect how well he played. He made plenty of rookie mistakes and reportedly has been focusing on cutting down on the crazy number of turnovers from last season. Jones posted a respectable 24 TD’s to 12 INT’s in his rookie output, but he also had a league-high 18 fumbles, losing 11 of them. Jones also kicked in 21.5 yards per game on the ground adding 2 touchdowns.

“The” offensive centerpiece in New York is Saquon Barkley. The generational runner is hoping to put most of 2019 behind him where he was banged up for part of the year. He is still on his rookie contract ($7.8M) and has little behind him to pose a threat to siphoning snaps. Wayne Gallman filled in during Barkley’s absence last year but did not exactly set the fantasy world on fire. Dion Lewis was brought in, but he should not pose much of a threat to the sure-handed Barkley even in passing downs. Judge claims that the offense will be run similar to Jason Garret’s offense in Dallas. The same (pre-Kellen Moore) offense that ran the ball a ton and preached clock management to keep the ball away from opposing offenses. This bodes well for the run game even though they will be without OT Nate Solder who chose to opt-out due to COVID-19.

The receiving corps was built around efficiency with good route runners that could find space in zones and worked well enough with the young quarterback. Sterling Shephard would be considered the no.1 receiver on this team but since being drafted in round 2 of 2016, he has not eclipsed 66 catches or 872 yards in a season. He apparently has been “embarrassing corners” at Giants camp but he will most likely be the first of many to do so in 2020. Shephard makes for a solid depth piece on your Dynasty Owner team but at a $10.25 million salary, you can find better alternatives that are number 1’s on their teams. Golden Tate has had a fine career while playing for four teams in his 11-year career but at $9.38 million, he is a worse version of Sterling Shephard. Playing in just 11 games in 2019, he produced a line of 49/676/6 and now has to share snaps with an improving Darius Slayton and possibly Corey Coleman. Slayton is predicted to fight for snaps and has reportedly been producing in camp along with Shephard. Slayton is in the second year of his rookie deal and his $688,000 contract is way more appealing than the previously listed receivers. Jones certainly trusted him and looked for him during his part-time starter stint last year filling in at times for Tate and Shephard. Evan Engram is said to be injury-free and feeling as good as he ever has coming into camp. Coming off a Lisfranc injury that derailed his 2019 campaign Engram hopes to bounce back in a big way. SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano predicts a career year for the former first rounder and is claiming for him to go over 1,000 yards “easily”. In his three years in the league, he has never gone over 722 yards in a season while missing an average of 4.6 games a year. If he can stay healthy, Engram is certainly talented enough to cash in on the hype.

Philadelphia Eagles

HC: Doug Pederson

OC: Press Taylor & Jeff Stoutland

QB: Carson Wentz, Jalen Hurts, Nate Sudfeld

RB: Miles Sanders, Boston Scott, Corey Clement, Elijah Holyfield, Michael Warren, Adrian Killins

WR: Alshon Jeffery, Desean Jackson, Greg Ward, John Hightower, Jalen Reagor, J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Quez Watkins, Marcus Green

TE: Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert, Noah Togiai, Caleb Wilson

The Eagles are poised to make some noise in the NFC this year….if they can stay healthy. That’s a big “if” and it hasn’t been a great start to the season. Wentz, Sanders, Jeffery, and Reagor have all missed some sort of time so far but the real damage they took was on the offensive line. With season ending injuries to RG Brandon Brooks and LT Andre Dillard the once promising O-Line will need to do some juggling to stay competitive.

Carson Wentz did a fantastic job in 2019 with what he was left with at the receiver position. Everyone outside of the other three NFC East teams was hoping to see the return to near MVP form of 2017. He is talented enough but has been rocked by injuries both to himself and his pass game targets. Wentz draws a hefty paycheck at $32 million annually but he is only 27 years old. His current contract runs through 2025 so if you are on the fence with the older QB’s in the similar price range, consider his contract just began where others are coming to end and seeking a new deal. Behind him is former Heisman runner-up Jalen Hurts. Hurts is a fantastic athlete that just happens to be playing the QB position. Several people have been pressing him into the Taysom Hill role but that may be just a little immature. He has talent and enough arm strength to stick around the league, but he is still quite raw.

The entire off-season was filled with speculation as to who Philadelphia would be bringing in to compete in the backfield. I don’t necessarily believe it is a complete assurance for Miles Sanders but a vote of confidence for Boston Scott. These two backfield mates make a fantastic duo and should both have enough of a workload to allow for plenty of fantasy goodness. Sanders had a solid second half of 2019 once Jordan Howard was out of the way and projects for roughly 20 touches per game. He is an excellent receiver and fantastic outside runner, but he does lack in the quick redirect department. Hopefully, he improves on his decisiveness a bit more in year two, but big things await him if his vision matures. Scott is more than just a satellite back and has true three down ability. He demonstrates power and elusiveness in his 5’6” 200 lb frame. His 8 missed tackles on 27 receptions are just a small sample of how powerfully slippery he is. The $615k salary for Scott is very enticing and should not be overlooked. If Sanders were to go down, Corey Clement figures to pick up his snaps in the run game while possibly expanding Scott’s targets.

On paper there was so much preseason talent and speed in this group it was silly. Fast forward a few months and Desean Jackson may shockingly be the healthiest guy in the group. Marquise Goodwin opted out, Jeffery is still not ready and probably won’t be to begin the season and Reagor injured his shoulder days ago. Ward and Hightower have appeared to step up and Arcega-Whiteside seems to be coming around. There is still a lot to hope for this group, but it just might take a little longer than expected. Reagor is the one that everyone is excited to see and for very good reason. He is fun to watch and is an absolutely electric athlete. His $3.3 million a year makes him a fine reserve in 2020 with fantasy starter potential in 2021.

Ertz is set to make $8.5 million this year and is nearing the time for a contract extension. Time will tell what the price tag would be, but it won’t exactly be Kittle/Kelce money. Ertz has been a fantastic tight end in his seven years with the Eagles and is not looking like he is done yet. Still under 30 years old, he has mirrored Travis Kelce since both came into the league in 2013. Ertz has Kelce beat in targets and receptions, but Kelce has edged him in yards, yards per game, yards after contact and touchdowns. Translation; Ertz is elite, Kelce is on another level. The looming contract extension for Ertz does not bode well for Goedert. It was once assumed that Goedert was to be the heir apparent to Ertz’s Philly legacy, now the 25-year-old might just have to be the very best TE2 in the league.

Washington Football Team

HC: Ron Rivera

OC: Scott Turner

QB: Dwayne Haskins, Alex Smith, Kyle Allen

RB: Adrian Peterson, Antonio Gibson, Bryce Love, Peyton Barber, JD McKissic

WR: Terry McLaurin, Kelvin Harmon, Trey Quinn, Steve Sims Jr, Antonio Gandy-Golden, Dontrelle Inman, Cam Sims, Jordan Veasy, Isaiah Wright, Jester Weah, Tony Brown

TE: Richard Rodgers, Logan Thomas, Jeremy Sprinkle, Marcus Baugh

You want to root for Ron Rivera. You need to root for Ron Rivera. Let’s recap his last few months. Get fired from a job mid-season after 8 years…check. Get hired by a team that was later involved in a very public scandal…check. Get hired by a professional sports team that doesn’t have a name…check. Find out you have cancer just before the season starts…check. Rivera is as hard as they come for coaches and he’ll need every bit of that mettle in 2020. His defense should be solid anchored by five former first round picks along the defensive front. But, it’s his offense that is a bit concerning led by Daniel Snyder favorite, Dwayne Haskins. Haskins is in his second year ($3.6 million) and showed some promise at the end of last year. The Ohio State product managed a stat line of 7 touchdowns to 7 interceptions for 1365 yds at an awful 58.6 completion rate in 9 games. Pretty bad but the good news for Haskins is Alex Smith is not quite ready to jump back under center and Kyle Allen is just plain bad. Haskins does not exactly have a stellar array of weapons outside of rookie star Terry McLaurin and possibly 2020 rookie Antonio Gibson.

With the departure of Darius Guice, Adrian Peterson keeps the role of the early down back and does not have much competition for that role. Entering his 14th season Peterson is not quite the fantasy god that he once was, but he can still get it done as a role player for this team with no name. In 211 touches he put together an 898/5 line while kicking in 17 catches for 142 yards. His $2.5 million salary is palatable since he is 35 years young and is most likely finished in 1-2 seasons. Bryce Love was a former Heisman hopeful that regressed after ankle and ACL injuries derailed his college career. Once considered a lock to be a first-round pick, he fell to the fourth round and is now fighting for a roster spot. Peyton Barber is a plodder without much burst and J.D. McKissic seems to have a secure role as a passing down specialist. That leaves Antonio Gibson for the other roster lock. Gibson ($1.2 million) is already taking first team reps and is possibly in line for more than just a reserve role at running back. He is a big bodied back that can play nearly any offensive specialty position on the field and will provide much needed versatility to a team short on dynamic playmakers.

The receiver depth chart seems to have taken shape this late in camp with McLaurin as the clear no.1, Inman as the no.2 and Sims lining up in the slot with Gandy-Golding holding down the no.4 duties. This quote from Norv Turner (from 247 Sports) says it all about McLaurin; “I mean, he’s a young man I think that had a solid year last year as a rookie, a third-round pick,” Rivera began. “He’s a guy that could be on the verge (of stardom), he really is.” McLaurin is set to be the centerpiece of this offense, but Washington will need to find a supporting cast capable of moving the offense alongside him. With Harmon shelved for 2020 (ACL), 2019 surprise Steven Sims could prove to push for the second most WR targets if he can hold off veteran Dontrelle Inman. Gandy-Golden has been reported to be behind in picking up the playbook and is not currently running with the first team offense. He offers a big bodied target for Haskins and may jump to the head of the line with some real-life reps.

The Washington TE position is one of the weaker ones in the NFL. Jeremy Sprinkle is in the mix to start but it looks like former QB Logan Thomas has the inside track on the gig. Thomas sports a $3 million salary and is not expected to be a high-volume pass catcher in a weak offense. You do the math.

We hope that you enjoyed this article. Check back soon for the NFC West roundup!

Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

The Top Five Players to Draft at Every Position

Author: Jay Poundsee

As we have all learned, Dynasty Owner is a far different fantasy football game than any of us have ever known. In this format, you will find more extraordinary differences in value than any other draft you have ever found yourself in. In my start-up draft, I watched players like Courtland Sutton and his $1,710,480 salary be drafted with the 34th pick. While a player like Julio Jones and his $22,000,000 salary fell to me all the way down at the 51st selection of the draft. Looking at these draft boards without any insight to the situation may be enough to drive the average man insane. The thought of trying to figure out how Mecole Hardman with a salary of $1,248,763 gets sandwiched between Keenan Allen at $11,250,000 and Stefon Diggs and his $14,400,000 salary may just drive you bonkers. Luckily, we at Dynasty Owner have your back and are here to help.

In this article I will be giving the top 5 players at each position I recommend targeting in your upcoming drafts. The requirements will be players with high upside, 2 or more years left on their deal, and under $9.9 (million) per year salary(5th year options will be assumed).

Quarterbacks

Let us start with what I feel is the most important position here in Dynasty Owner, which is the quarterback. The number one QB and most likely number 1 pick in every draft will be Lamar Jackson with 2 years at $2.3(million) left on his deal. He is almost a sure bet to be the best value in all of Dynasty Owner in terms of cost per point.

At number two, I have Kyler Murray, who has 4 years left at $8,789,661 per year. I have Kyler at number 2 because of the potential he showed in 2019 as a rookie on a bad football team. It also helps when you give a young talented kid a wide-out named Deandre Hopkins. Needless to say, the Arizona Cardinals are a must watch on TV this season.

At the 3rd quarterback spot has to be Daniel Jones with 4 years left at $6,416,014. I know the majority will have Josh Allen over Jones, but I feel Jones has more upside after the rookie year he just had. If you take Jones stats and stretch them out over 16 games, he would have broken Baker Mayfield’s rookie touchdown record of 27(paced at 32) along with roughly 350-400 rushing yards and that screams great cost per point at the quarterback position.

As mentioned above, I have Josh Allen at 4 with 2 years left at $5,295760. Allen has improved each year and seems to have a solid floor because of his rushing work near the goal line. When you pair that with a cheap salary it makes him an easy choice here.

Rounding out my top 5 is the incoming number 1 overall draft pick Mr. Joe Burrow at $9,047,534 and 5 years to go on his deal. I absolutely love Burrow’s potential as well as the sneaky good upside of the Bengals offense and what they have started to build around him in year 1. Burrow just had the best college season ever, while showing the most poise and confidence we have ever witnessed. He is still a rookie so for now he checks in at number 5. This kid has greatness written all over him!

Running Backs

With our next position, we will be talking about the running backs. In these rankings you won’t find any better than Saquon Barkley with 3 years left at $7,798,688. There isn’t much here to say about Barkley. He pretty much speaks for himself at this point, health is the only concern.

At number 2 I have Clyde Edwards-Helaire at $2,705,393 with 5 years left on his deal. I know hes only a rookie but looking back through recent history, first round running backs have always seen 200 plus touches (aside from Rashad Penny). If Joe Blow from the corner store was in this Chiefs backfield getting 200 plus touches at a low salary, I would want him on my roster. Let’s not forget the reports of Mahomes texting CEH during the draft saying “I want you on my team” or Coach Andy Reid’s Brian Westbrook comparison. I think it’s safe to say the chiefs have big time plans for their rookie.

At 3, I have Miles Sanders and his $1,337,544 salary with another 3 years to go in Doug Pederson’s offense. Philly’s running backs coach Deuce Staley has had nothing but high praises this off season about Sanders talent and his upcoming workload, which means big things are coming. Sanders is an immensely talented running back who broke out in the second half last year. I would rank him in the top 5 of all Running backs on pure talent alone.

At 4, I have Josh Jacobs and his $2,983,350 salary with 4 years left on his deal. Jacobs is a true workhorse who could use some work on his receiving, but he seems to have a remarkably high floor and a huge workload ahead of him.

Rounding out the running backs, I have Nick Chubb in 5th. His salary is $1,845,774 and he still has 2 more years left on his contract in Cleveland. The presence of Kareem Hunt is what puts Jacobs ahead of Chubb here.

Wide Receivers

Starting things off at wide receivers, I have one of my personal favorite young fantasy players in all formats and that’s DJ Moore with a potential 3 years left at $2,792,829. I love the upside of Moore and the potential he has shown his first 2 years and let’s face it, he’s yet to have anything but a below average quarterback throwing him the ball. The floor for DJ Moore is extremely high with Teddy Two Gloves in the mix. The next slot was tough for me as I am a diehard Ohio State Buckeye fan and love the upside mixed with production for Terry McLaurin.

With that said, at number 2 I have to go with AJ Brown at $1,413,092 and 3 years left on his deal. I think the upside of the Titans offense is far superior to The Washington Football Team giving AJ Brown a much safer floor and a higher ceiling going forward. In 2019 Brown had just under 19% of the Titans target share which is all but guaranteed to receive a boost in 2020. Somehow, despite all of that he was still able to produce 1,051 yards and 8 touchdowns. Once Ryan Tannehill (who the Titans resigned to a 4 year deal this past off season) took over, Brown exploded onto the fantasy scene.

My third receiver as stated above is Terry McLaurin, who I see as a target monster in Washington. We have all seen with targets comes production in just about all cases. McLaurin has 3 years left at $961,918 which is going to make him an amazing cost per point player in 2020 and years to come.

At number 4 I have DK Metcalf who has 3 years at $1,146,513 left on his deal. In 2019 Metcalf flashed tremendous potential alongside Russel Wilson. Anytime I can get a talent like that catching passes from a quarterback like Wilson sign me up.

At 5 I have my second DJ in DJ Chark JR at $1,111,807 and 2 years left on his current deal. The offense in Jacksonville doesn’t get my wheels spinning but Chark is too good of a cheap young talent to pass on.

Tight Ends

Finally, we have everyone’s favorite position the tight ends. My number 1 tight end here in Dynasty Owner regardless the requirements is none other than Mark Andrews with a salary of just $863,290 and 2 years left. I love the upside of Andrews in the Ravens offense where he played only 44 percent of the team’s offensive plays last year. With the way Andrews has produced thus far he’s almost a lock to be on the field more this season. Look for a big bump up in production for Mr. Andrews in the coming seasons.

In the 2nd spot, I have my breakout tight end in 2020, Dallas Goedert. Goederts salary is $1,406,068 and he has 2 years left on his current deal. I look for Zach Ertz to start showing his age and have a dip in production along with the Eagles receiving situation I look for Goedert to have a big year with a huge bump in targets this season.

At number 3, I have TJ Hockenson at $4,955,306 and 4 years left on his deal. Tight ends tend to take longer than any other position to transition into the NFL and with Hockenson at a cheap salary and potential high production coming over the next few years, he is a no-brainier for me to want on my roster.

Right behind Hockenson at number 4, I have his old Iowa Hawkeye teammate and freak athlete, Noah Fant. The Bronco tight end has as much upside as any young tight end at a salary of $ 3,147,680 and 4 years left in Denver. Which makes him a must have tight end in this format.

Bringing up the rear at number 5, I have Chris Herndon with 2 years left at $792,841. Herndon had a very disappointing year in 2019 with a suspension and 2 separate injuries holding him to just one catch for 7 yards. While 2019 may have been a disappointment, Herndon was excellent his rookie year breaking the rare 500 yard receiving mark for tight ends in their rookie year.

I hope this article helps all of you in your upcoming drafts and remember to always think about your salary next year, who has a new contract coming, and cost per point in this format it’s what will win you championships here in Dynasty Owner.

Follow us on Twitter: @Dynasty_Owner

Roster Roundup – Round Five: AFC East

Taking A Dive Into The Rosters From Around The League

Author: Chris Wolf

This time of year is typically the time when teams, trainers and agents hype up their players. We know how the world has changed in recent months and the NFL is no different in its approach to returning to “normalcy”. With the news of NFL staff and players testing positive for the Coronavirus, fantasy news is taking a backseat. As a result, fantasy players are missing out on the typical hyperbole surrounding pre-season roster news and notes.

In this series we will look at who’s who on rosters and how that may help in your drafts and early waivers.

Each week we will examine a division’s skill position current roster and predictive depth chart heading into training camp to see how that relates to their fantasy outlook.

Buffalo Bills

HC: Sean McDermott

OC: Brian Daboll

QB: Josh Allen, Matt Barkley, Davis Webb, Jake Fromm

RB: Devin Singletary, TJ Yeldon, Zack Moss, Taiwan Jones, Christian Wade, Antonio Williams, Patrick Demarco, Reggie Gilliam

WR: Stefon Diggs, John Brown, Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis, Isaiah McKenzie, Robert Foster, Andre Roberts, Isaiah Hodgins, Nick Easley

TE:Dawson Knox, Tyler Kroft, Lee Smith, Tommy Sweeney, Jason Croom, Nate Becker

Sean McDermott returns for his fourth season at the helm after leading the team to the playoffs in two of his first three years. There is talent on both sides of the ball, especially on the defense. OC Brian Daboll has generally called a well-balanced game with a definite emphasis on the run. Josh Allen returns under center with more optimism this year than his last two years. He now welcomes more weapons and a better offensive line. Allen is a unique talent utilizing both his cannon of an arm with a steady diet of his capable legs. In his 28 career games played, he has thrown for 30 TD’s to 21 INT’s. He’s not going to throw for a ton of yards, but he will make up for it on the ground. He has amassed 17 rushing scores and at least 510 yards in both of his seasons played. In 2019 Allen had 22 Red Zone rush attempts resulting in 9 TD’s including 5 TD’s within the 5-yard line. Like his popular comparison, that is truly Newton-esque. Allen makes for a fine QB1 or a great QB2 at a very affordable price tag of $5.3 million. Matt Barkley is a career back-up and presently has the no.2 job while the future Matt Barkley is Jake Fromm and he should beat out Davis Webb for the 3rd QB spot.

The RB position returns Devin Singletary and TJ Yeldon from last season’s middling run game. Frank Gore is gone, and his 173 attempts are now up for grabs but are expected to go to pre-draft darling Zack Moss. Singletary ($974,500) showed some promise in his rookie campaign but was often stifled behind a run blocking unit that graded out in the middle of the pack. Not only was he handicapped by a so-so offensive line, inside the 20 the snaps went to Gore and Allen. Gore and Singletary scored just 4 TD’s between them to Allen’s 9. Moss ($1.15 million) figures to come in to add some juice to the position after the departure of Gore. Moss was the all-time leading rusher and scorer at Utah and profiles as a solid runner with power and good hands. Singletary should lead the backfield in touches with Moss right behind him.

The Wide Receiver group got an upgrade this off-season with a big trade for former Viking Stefon Diggs. Diggs ($14.4 million) immediately figures to slot in as the #1 receiver and will be a fine complement to John Brown ($9 million) and Cole Beasley ($7.25 million). Diggs is a dynamic route runner that always seemed like he just needed the chains to come off. He will be hard pressed to find a ton of volume in this offense, but he should dominate the targets. Due to landing spot alone, he figures to post mid to low end WR2 numbers, but he has the makings of a top 12 receiver if this offense was to drastically change. Brown is a burner with fantastic ball tracking ability but is sure to take a hit in almost all categories with Diggs in town. Brown led the team in targets, receptions, yards and tied Beasley for 1st in scoring with 6 TD’s. Capable of lining up all over the field, Diggs arrival might just free Brown up from the opposing team’s top defenders allowing him to do what he does best…make plays in the open field. Beasley was a particularly good addition last year for Allen’s growth and his QB bail-out-ability provided a fantastic security blanket for the young Allen. He was second on the team in targets, receptions, and yards and should continue to occupy the slot much like he did in 2019. As Diggs enters his prime (age 27), Beasley (31) and Brown (30) will most likely be on the downward trajectory of Buffalo’s plans. The Bill’s selected both Gabriel Davis and Isaiah Hodgins in the 2020 draft to begin framing out their future at the position. Davis should settle into the WR4 role on the team, passing the forgotten speedster Robert Foster.

Dawson Knox was a rookie in 2019 and did not have the advantage to sit and learn behind veteran TE’s like the majority of rookie TE’s get to. The former 3rd rounder is highly athletic but is in a very crowded target situation with all those receivers and Singletary competing for grabs. Knox drew 51 targets for 28 catches, 388 yards and 2 touchdowns last year and that might be the range he stays in for 2020. Veteran Tyler Kroft was added to the mix but won’t be on any fantasy radar barring several injuries.

Miami Dolphins

HC: Brian Flores

OC: Chan Gailey

QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tua Tagovailoa, Josh Rosen

RB: Jordan Howard, Matt Breida, Kalen Ballage, Myles Gaskin, Patrick Laird, Chandler Cox

WR: DeVante Parker, Preston Williams, Gary Jennings, Isaiah Ford, Jakeem Grant, Mack Hollins, Matt Cole, Kirk Merritt

TE: Mike Gesicki, Durham Smythe, Adam Shaheen, Chris Myarick

The Dolphins were in the media dubbed “Tank for Tua” mode early in the season before the scrappy overachievers made the mistake of starting the poster boy for gritty- Ryan Fitzpatrick. HC Brian Flores obviously did not like the way the offense was heading (Fitzpatrick was their leading rusher) so he went and sprung the 68-year-old Chan Gailey from Shady Acres retirement home to shake things up. The Fins still wound up getting Tua and he will reportedly compete early for the starting gig even after being just a year removed from a horrible hip dislocation and ankle injury. Tua’s will to win and his insane accuracy will make it hard for the coaching staff to keep him off the field, pandemic or not. His mobility will be in question coming off hip and ankle injuries, but he is such a competitor, he will find a way to adjust his play. It will be fun to see who wins the starting job between these QB’s not named Josh Rosen.

The aforementioned run game was severely laughable in 2019 and can only get better. New additions Jordan Howard and Matt Brieda bring a bit of low-level thunder and lightning to the mix. Neither will win you a championship but offer good plug and play options at affordable salaries (Howard $4.88 million and Brieda at $3.26 million). Howard will be the “starter” but Brieda offers more dynamic upside through the air and ground. Both are upgrades but are far from ideal to rely on other than depth for your team.

DeVante Parker finally had the breakout season that everyone was waiting for in 2019. Ranking an NFL fifth in yards (1,202) and fourth (9) in touchdowns last year, Parker finally lived up to the previous expectations of being a team’s number one receiver. He has above average separation skills with high end body control but is not a burner. Parker wasn’t seeing the lion’s share of the targets until after rookie Preston Williams went down with a torn ACL in week 9. Williams was a pre-draft villain but a preseason hero and had ample success in the first half of the season posting a 32/428/3 line. This was done on 60 targets with many of them coming from Josh Rosen. Williams is a great bench stash at just $588,000 and is expected to be on track to start week 1. As of now the rest of the depth chart is up for grabs. Keep an eye on super athlete UDFA Kirk Merritt if he makes the team. Mike Gesicki figures to have a nice role in the passing game as the big slot and should command relative usage to last year. Entering his third year, he hopes to continue to improve on his 51/570/5 on 89 targets line. He has no competition from tight ends and is the favorite to take over in 3 WR sets now that Allen Hurns and Albert Wilson have chosen to opt out for 2020. Gesicki carries a nice price tag of just $1.6 million this year and next and should make for a fine low end TE1 or high end TE2.

New England Patriots

HC: Bill Belichick

OC: Josh McDaniels

QB: Cam Newton, Jarret Stidham, Brian Hoyer, Brian Lewerke

RB: Sony Michel, James White, Damien Harris, Rex Burkhead, Lamar Miller, JJ Taylor

WR: Julian Edelman, N’Keal Harry, Mohamed Sanu, Damiere Byrd, Jakobi Meyers, Matthew Slater, Quincy Adeboyejo, Gunner Olszewski, Jeff Thomas, Devin Ross, Will Hastings

TE: Devin Asiasi, Dalton Keene, Ryan Izzo, Rashod Berry, Jakob Johnson, Jake Burt

Brady is gone, an NFL high 8 players have decided to opt out due to COVID concerns, the enigmatic Cam Newton comes to town, but Bill Belichick is still in charge. Forget the narrative of can Brady win without Belichick and vice versa. That was so 2020 spring. It’s now into training camp and Mr. Bill has his hands absolutely full. Jarret Stidham was to be the heir apparent after Brady left for free agency. The organization threw a bunch of praise and confidence behind the young signal caller until they were able to get a read on Newton’s health. Now it appears that Newton is the next in line, not Stidham. Newton has been incredible when he is fully healthy. His legs may actually have been more of an asset than his arm at times. Not short on arm strength but at times waning in accuracy, nobody would ever accuse Newton of having Manning-like accuracy (Peyton, not Eli). At a mere $1.75 million, it’s a worthwhile “risk” to roster Newton and hope that he is fully healthy and grasps McDaniel’s offense quickly.

Sony Michel has landed on the PUP and is a serious candidate to not begin the season on the active roster. He has buyer beware written all over him with his lengthy injury history and uncertain usage in 2020. Carrying the ball 247 times with a meager 3.7 YPC and just 2.56 yards after contact, Michel’s injuries slowed him considerably and the fact that he is not at all a receiving threat (19 catches in 2 years) you would be best to look away this year. White on the other hand, has been dynamic. Entering his 7th season after being selected in the 4th round by NE, White is an ideal player to utilize as a first up off the bench RB for your Dynasty Owner squad. At $4 million, he is at a reasonable price for expected production while averaging 13.2 fantasy points the past two years which is ideal for a mid-round fantasy contributor. Rex Burkhead (1 yr./$3 million) is a better real-life football player and will siphon touches from fantasy relevant players such as Damian Harris. Harris is a name to watch to ascend the depth chart especially with Michel’s recovery from surgery. The 2019 3rd rounder from Alabama is in a great position to contribute as the early down back and at a $907,00 price tag, he could be a valuable addition to your team. Late edition Lamar Miller is an indication that Michel is possibly not as far along in his rehab that most believed. Coming off an ACL tear from a year ago, Miller has the three down skill set to once again muddy the waters of a Patriots backfield depth chart.

Julian Edelman is the accomplished veteran of the wide receiver group, but he comes with a big ole’ caution tag. He will be 34 years old and recovering from shoulder surgery going into this season. He has had fantastic fantasy years on his resume, but the 2020 season just might not be one of them. His production absolutely fell off a cliff at the end of last season and will be entering training camp for the first time without Tom Brady since 2009. He was on an incredible pace last year and did see 154 targets, but he took a beating as the only reliable receiver for Brady. At $7.75 million and with his career coming to a close, your draft capital would be wisely spent elsewhere. N’Keal Harry ($2.5 million) hopes to become the true #1 receiver for NE and his 1st round pedigree should be put to the challenge. Harry is a big bodied (6’2”/228lbs) receiver that was targeted heavily in the red zone in his 5 starts last year and projects to fulfill the same role in 2020 due to the lack of competition at the position. His upside is tremendous, and the opportunity is there, if he can take a step forward in his sophomore campaign, he could be a steal in this year’s drafts. Mohamed Sanu is another veteran presence that should start outside opposite Harry with Edelman in the slot. New England traded a 2nd round pick last year to get Brady another weapon in the passing game but it never quite panned out for Sanu. He battled injuries and was cast out to the perimeter after seeing the slot for most of his career. He too is recovering from surgery (ankle) and hopes his time spent playing catch this offseason with Newton will pay dividends this season.

Jakobi Meyers and Damiere Byrd are two names to monitor and both have shown flashes in pre-season play. Meyers was a part time player in 2019 pulling in 26 receptions for 359 scoreless yards. He figures to return to his role as the 4th or 5th receiver if the top 3 are ready to go. The Tight End position is as murky as ever with the probable top two tight ends being rookies Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene now that Matt LaCosse has opted out. Asiasi is the probable starting traditional tight end where Keene will serve in the H-Back role. You won’t be breaking the bank with either of the 3rd round selections at $1.1 million a year and it could be a good time to get in while their stock is low.

New York Jets

HC: Adam Gase

OC: Dowell Loggains

QB: Sam Darnold, Joe Flacco, David Fales, James Morgan, Mike White

RB: Le’Veon Bell, Frank Gore, Lamical Perine, Kenneth Dixon, Josh Adams, Trevon Wesco

WR: Breshard Perriman, Jamison Crowder, Denzel Mims, Braxton Berrios, Josh Malone, Vyncint Smith, Jeff Smith, Jehu Chesson, Lawrence Cager, George Campbell

TE: Chris Herndon IV, Ryan Griffin, Daniel Brown, Ross Travis

Sam Darnold enters the pivotal year three for a QB this season. The third year is often the time teams will plan to draft a QB’s replacement before year four or to commit to the QB for a contract extension. Held to 13 games last year due to illness, Darnold improved on nearly every category from his rookie year where he also played 13 games. He did not have a stellar 2019. He averaged one interception and 2.5 sacks per game while throwing 19 TD’s. Darnold has not had the best supporting cast in his two years with the Jets so you really can’t blame him entirely but his draft pedigree (2018 3rd overall) should warrant a more stable outcome. His O-Line is completely different, and he has a new wide receiver in Breshard Perriman to work with after losing Robby Anderson to free agency. His $7.5 million salary is digestible but hopefully he would not be needed to win you any weeks. Joe Flacco was brought in to replace Luke Falk after last year’s stretch of embarrassment when Falk filled in for Darnold when he had Mono.

Adam Gase was not particularly good at hiding his displeasure for the signing of Le’Veon Bell last offseason. This year, Gase has talked him up saying “He’s been working extremely hard and looks good.” Thanks coach, we appreciate the news flash. Gase’s history shows that he prefers a committee backfield which is apparent going back to his Denver, Chicago, and Miami days as the OC and then HC. This backfield may be a bit rough to put a committee together though with Frank Gore, Lamichael Perine and possibly Kenneth Dixon. Bell should once again see most snaps and he possesses the three down talent that is coveted in fantasy football. At a hefty $13 million price tag, he carries the salary of a RB1, but you would be much more comfortable with him as your RB2. Gore may have been brought in for veteran leadership or a specific role, but he should not receive volume work at this point of his career if anything was to happen to Bell. Rookie Lamichael Perine is worth a stash due to his three down ability as well as two fading running backs in front of him on the depth chart. At just $1 million, those are the types of players that you can hold onto and hopefully they pop while at that salary.

Gase likes rolling out three receivers more than most play callers in the NFL. The problem is his starters in these 3WR sets are some of the weakest in the NFL. Crowder is the most talented and was a favorite of Darnolds while operating mainly out of the slot. He is a good route runner and helps his QB by always working back to the ball and finding soft spots in coverage. Perriman showed that he could operate as a WR1 when he filled in for Mike Evans and Chris Godwin missed time last year for the Bucs. But his small sample size as a starter is eclipsed by his disappointing years with Cleveland and Baltimore after being selected 26th overall in 2015. Only time will tell if he will be asked to shoulder the load of a WR1 or is he to be a deep threat compliment opposite Rookie Denzel Mims. Mims is a deep threat himself as well as being an accomplished contested catch receiver. His senior bowl practices turned enough heads to get him on team’s boards, but it was his explosive combine that led him to being drafted in the second round. At $1.35 million, he is one of the rookie receivers that could garner you an early return.

Chris Herndon returns after a forgetful sophomore campaign marred by a suspension and injuries. He figures to be a key piece of this offense with the ability to challenge for top two or three in targets for the Jets. He was a breakout candidate last year after posting 39/205/4 as a rookie in 2018. Now fully healed, he looks to bounce back as a post-hype fantasy player that is a solid TE2 for your team at just $793,000.  Veteran Ryan Griffin filled in for Herndon last year and nobody was brought in to compete for the job making Herndon an intriguing player to watch as he has been flying under the radar in drafts this summer.

That is the AFC East! We hope you enjoyed the read. Check back soon! We will continue with the NFC East next week.

Follow us on Twitter: @CKWolf21 and @Dynasty_Owner

Are Dynasty Owners’ Utilizing Handcuffs for Their Star Players?

Author: Steven Van Tassell

Surely everyone is aware of the terminology and know that a handcuff is a backup player who will likely take over for a team’s starter in the event of an injury. In addition to “regular” injuries that happen all of the time to NFL players, Dynasty Owners in 2020 also have to worry about players testing positive for COVID-19 and going on the new Reverse/COVID-19 list. This new list is defined as being for players who have tested positive, or players who are quarantining because they came into close contact with someone who tested positive.

One of my fellow Beta Users (Nick – Quaranteam) suggested that I look at whether Dynasty Owners were valuing handcuffs for their star players enough in 2020 due to COVID-19. The possibility is out there that some star players will contract the contagious disease and have to sit out games at some point this season. It’s not a minimum of three games as previously expected, but more flexible than that as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk explains in the following article: https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2020/07/18/clarifying-the-2020-injured-reserve-covid-19-rules/.

Since 12-team leagues are new to Dynasty Owner for 2020, we don’t have historical data to see whether handcuffs are being utilized more or less this season than last year, but we can still look at what’s going on this year. This analysis of handcuffs is based on a review of 43 Dynasty Owner drafts for the 2020 season. All of the drafts were conducted between June 14th and July 26th. There were 5 drafts by Beta users, 15 For the Love of the Game drafts by players only paying the $29 entry fee, 11 drafts in the $600 prize pool leagues ($50 entry fee per team) and 12 drafts in the $1,200 prize pool leagues ($100 entry fee per team).

For the purposes of this analysis, I’m looking at situations where there is a clear starter (Lamar Jackson, Christian McCaffrey, etc.) and then a backup who will likely only play if their team is winning or losing by a lot or if the starter gets hurt or is placed on the COVID-19 list. I purposely left out players on teams and positions in which the starting position is up for grabs, which is more of a hedging your bet on a certain position. Examples of that include starting QB for the San Diego Los Angeles Chargers as it’s reasonable to think either Justin Herbert or Tyrod Taylor could be the starter in Week 1, the Ravens’ RB situation with Mark Ingram and rookie J.K. Dobbins or the Rams who have a quartet of RBs (Cam Akers, Darrel Henderson, Malcolm Brown and John Kelly) who coach Sean McVay has identified as “NFL-legitimate starting-caliber backs”. There are other examples but that should give everyone an idea of what qualified as a handcuff versus hedging your bets.

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.

Handcuffing by Position and League Type

Overall, there were 300 identified handcuff situations over the 43 leagues analyzed, or an average of 6.98 per league. Teams could draft more than one handcuff for their players, and we’ve identified several interesting ones later on in this article. Since we are all in 12-team leagues now, that means only about half of the teams in each league drafted a handcuff for one of their players. There are multiple situations in which a team drafted more than one handcuff, so the average number of teams drafting a handcuff is lower than the number of situations.

By league type, there were more handcuffs per league in the $100 entry fee leagues (8.00 per league) than any other type by a significant margin (6.64 for $50 entry fee leagues, 6.60 for the $29 Love of the Game leagues and a low of 6.40 for the five Beta user leagues). The more cash people have invested in their Dynasty Owner team, the more likely they are to handcuff – very interesting. For newer players, Beta users are free for life and don’t pay anything in return for spending last year and this off-season spotting bugs in mock drafts and on the website and app.

By position, it’s not surprising that more people are drafting a handcuff at the running back position than any other position (141 in total, or 47% of all handcuffs are RBs). There were 104 WR handcuffs, or about one-third (35%). There were 38 handcuff QBs, or 13% of the 300 handcuffs, while only 17 handcuffs (6%) were TEs.

In terms of players, 74 individual star players were handcuffed with a lesser player. Thirty-one WRs were handcuffed, or over two-fifths (42%) of players handcuffed were WRs, followed by 19 RBs (26%), 16 QBs (22%) and a mere 8 TEs (11%). Let’s find out more about who was handcuffed most frequently and wasn’t frequently enough.

Running While Handcuffed

The position in which most fantasy football players utilize handcuffs is usually running backs based on their higher rate of injury and the current preference of many NFL coaches for running back by committee (RBBC). Dynasty Owner is no different in this regard as nearly half of the handcuffs in the early drafts were RB handcuffs with 19 starting RBs being handcuffed by 37 backups. Remember that we are looking only at handcuffs and not situations like those identified earlier where the starting job is “up for grabs”.

So, which RB was handcuffed the most in Dynasty Owner drafts? Was it the RB with the highest salary in Dynasty Owner, Ezekiel Elliott at $15 million in salary cap room, or was it one of the top two RBs drafted in Christian McCaffrey (ADP 2.6) or Saquon Barkley (ADP 3.8)?

The answer is: None of those guys. There was a tie as the most handcuffed RBs were in fact Dalvin Cook of the Vikings and James Conner of the Steelers, both of whom were handcuffed in 15 Dynasty Owner drafts. While both were handcuffed the same number of times, the most common handcuff was picking Conner and his $790,381 one-year contract along with Jaylen Samuels and his equally affordable $679,517 salary for the next two years.

Dalvin Cook and his threatened training camp holdout was big news back in early June when he announced it (Spoiler alert: He didn’t hold out and reported to training camp on time) and likely caused many of his Dynasty Owners to handcuff him with either Alexander Mattison (8 times) or Mike Boone (6 times). There was at least one team (Wasabi) who handcuffed Cook with both of those guys.

There was also one team (The Team) who handcuffed Cook, who they drafted with the #12 overall pick, with fullback C.J. Ham and his 4-year, $12 million salary. Ham was drafted with the first pick in the 20th round by The Team in their For the Love of the Game league. This wasn’t a wise pick for The Team since Mike Boone was still available if they wanted a handcuff. Ham is so lightly regarded by other Dynasty Owners that no other team has Ham on their roster. Probably because he’s a blocking fullback and had just 37.1 Dynasty Owner fantasy points last year.

Two players on one-year contracts were also handcuffed nearly as often (14 times each). Kenyan Drake and his $8.483 million contract was handcuffed equally by Chase Edmonds and rookie Eno Benjamin. Joe Mixon was also handcuffed 14 times, but was handcuffed by four separate players (Giovani Bernard – 7 times; Trayveon Williams – 4 times; Rodney Anderson – 2 times; Jacques Patrick – 1 time). The four handcuff players were the most for any single starter. Congratulations!?!

Handcuffing the Top Picks at QB

In contrast, the most obvious handcuff at QB is drafting Robert Griffin III to pair with Lamar Jackson, who many Dynasty Owners have been taking with the #1 pick (ADP 1.3). Dynasty Owners who have chosen Lamar are handcuffing him with RGIII more than any other QB combo with 7 Dynasty Owners having done this. Interestingly, even though there were 15 For the Love of the Game drafts analyzed, none of the Lamar-RGIII handcuffs occurred in one of those leagues. For those Dynasty Owners who have Lamar and $2 million in salary cap room, RGIII is currently available in 50% of Dynasty Owner leagues.

That’s three more handcuffs than the trio of starting QBs who are next most likely to be handcuffs (Patrick Mahomes, Cam Newton and Carson Wentz). Mahomes is has the second best ADP (1.8) with 4 handcuffs (3 times by Chad Henne and 1 time by Jordan Ta’amu). All three of the potential Kansas City backup QBs are highly available for Mahomes’ owners who have salary cap room to protect their investment in the $450 million Super Bowl MVP.  Ta’amu is owned by the highest percentage (11%), followed by Henne at 7% and Matt Moore at only 2% ownership.

Despite not being signed by the Patriots until late June and only being selected at his new salary in the July drafts, Cam Newton was also handcuffed four times by backups in New England. Three Dynasty Owners chose Jarrett Stidham as Newton’s backup, while one chose Brian Hoyer. Even though Coach Bill Belichick has said that Newton won’t be handed the starting job, he’s the starter in New England barring an injury. For Newton’s Dynasty Owners who didn’t handcuff in the draft, but are thinking about it doing it now, sorry to inform you but Stidham and his $788,423 contract isn’t available in any Dynasty Owner leagues right now.

Finally, we have four Dynasty Owners who handcuffed Carson Wentz and his $32 million annual salary with rookie QB and 2nd round draft pick Jalen Hurts. Even though only a few Wentz owners chose Hurts as well, Hurts and his $1.5 million salary is 100% owned, compared to 78% ownership for Wentz. Wentz does have a better ADP (80.7) than Hurts (152.9). Nate Sudfeld, who might end up being the true backup in 2020 if media reports are true, is only owned in 2% of leagues. You’ll need $2 million in salary cap room to go get Sudfeld if you have Wentz but not Hurts, are concerned about Wentz’s injury history and want to ensure you have a stake in the Eagles’ offense this year.

The only other two first round QB draft picks – Kyler Murray (ADP 4.3) and Deshaun Watson (ADP 5.0) – were lightly handcuffed with only one Dynasty Owner handcuffing Murray with his likely backup in Brett Hundley and none of the Dynasty Owners who drafted through July 26th handcuffing Deshaun Watson. The owner who drafted Hundley (The Guns of Hochuli – great team name!) is the only one right now with Hundley on their roster.

Not a Lot of Handcuffing of Tight Ends

At the other end of the handcuff spectrum from RBs and QBs are TEs who are rarely being handcuffed in the early Dynasty Owner drafts. Only 8 starting TEs had their backup drafted by the same Dynasty Owner and it only occurred a total of 17 times, accounting for just 6% of all handcuffs drafted.

The consensus top three Dynasty Owner TEs (George Kittle, Travis Kelce and Mark Andrews) were rarely handcuffed by their Dynasty Owners even though they had clear backups at the time (Ross Dwelley for Kittle, Ricky Seals-Jones for Kelce and Nick Boyle for Andrews). Nobody handcuffed Mark Andrews and only one Dynasty Owner handcuffed Kelce or Kittle. Steveo FC was the only Dynasty Owner to draft both George Kittle and Ross Dwelley, in case Kittle can’t play, even though Dwelley performed pretty well in the two games (22.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points) that Kittle missed in 2019. Dwelley only cost Steveo FC a last round draft pick (#291 overall) and $750,000 in salary cap room. In case Kittle owners are thinking that having Dwelley on the roster is a good idea (even with the recent signing of Jordan Reed by the 49ers), he’s currently available in 96% of Dynasty Owner leagues. Kelce was also only handcuffed in one league by Kilmer’s Coyotes with Ricky Seals-Jones. Seals-Jones doesn’t cost much ($925,000) and is only signed to a one-year deal so Kelce owners in the three-quarters (78%) of Dynasty Owner leagues in which Seals-Jones isn’t owned could go out and grab him if they have cap room.

The most handcuffed starting TE is the eighth TE being drafted, on average, in Dynasty Owner – Evan Engram of the Giants. His backup Kaden Smith is being drafted well over 100 spots later than Engram (ADP of 79 vs. 201.8 for Smith). His cost is minimal as he has 3 years left on his contract at just $680,002 per year and his production was high in place of Engram last year, when he averaged just under 11.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy point per game and had four double-digit point games in just seven contests after Engram got injured last year.

The Single Most Handcuffed WR Is Also the Highest Drafted One

Michael Thomas is being drafted a full round ahead of any other WR with an ADP of 7.6. The next highest drafted WR by ADP right now is Chris Godwin with a current ADP of 20.3. Thomas has the third highest salary of any WR at $19.25 million and some of his Dynasty Owners are backing up their investment in the Ferrari of WRs (373.6 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2019). The handcuff of choice for Thomas’ Dynasty Owners, like The Jerk, is Deonte Harris who only had 34.5 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in 2019 – with twice as many coming from returns (23.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points) than rushing and receiving combined (11.5). Six Dynasty Owners have both Michael Thomas and Deonte Harris on their roster, the most of any single WR starter and backup. Since Taysom Hill is listed as a QB, I didn’t consider him as a handcuff for Thomas even though he does play WR fairly frequently.

While the Thomas-Harris handcuff was the single, most frequently drafted one, Thomas was not the most frequently handcuffed WR in Dynasty Owner drafts. That honor goes to Eagles rookie WR Jalen Reagor who was handcuffed 9 times by three different players (Quez Watkins – 4 times; Greg Ward – 4 times; John Hightower – 1 time), followed closely by Stefon Diggs of the Buffalo Bills. Three backup WRs (Gabriel Davis – 4 times; Duke Williams – 3 times; Isaiah Hodgins – 1 times) were also selected by the Diggs’ Dynasty Owner a total of 8 times, just one fewer time than Reagor. However, if you add in Diggs’ fellow starting WRs in Buffalo (John Brown and Cole Beasley), there were a total of 11 backup WRs selected as handcuffs to starting Buffalo WRs.

Eleven handcuffs for Buffalo WRs was the highest for any team, but there were three WRs being handcuffed. There are a lot of top WR pairing out there for the handcuffing, such as Mike Evans and Chris Godwin in Tampa Bay or A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd in Cincinnati, among others. Interestingly, there was a wide divergence in handcuffing for those two pairs with Green and Boyd being handcuffed twice as frequently as Evans and Godwin (10 times versus 5 times). There was an even split by Dynasty Owners handcuffing Green (and his $17.97 million salary) and Tyler Boyd (who has a $10.75 million salary). The much more expensive WR in Tampa Bay, Mike Evans, was handcuffed four out of the five times that a Dynasty Owner handcuffed one. Just only Dynasty Owner (WKFLD Jags) handcuffed Chris Godwin with Tyler Johnson.

Interesting Handcuffs

After looking at over 500 Dynasty Owner rosters, you see some “interesting” handcuff situations. Here are a few that stood out to me as I was looking at all of those rosters:

  • The Cincinnati Sizzlers drafted five Green Bay WRs, pretty much every WR on the Packers roster, except Davante Adams. That’s right they have Allen Lazard, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Equanimeous St. Brown, Reggie Begelton and Jake Kumerow (in draft order). That’s the most players from any one team at a single position. Fortunately for them, they didn’t draft Devin Funchess even though they could have since they drafted in June before he opted out for the 2020 season.
  • Stacking three Bengals on one team was not an isolated phenomenon. Two teams in $100 entry fee leagues (Flex and SBB) drafted the same three Bengals RBs (Joe Mixon, Trayveon Williams and Giovani Bernard). They both even got Williams and Bernard with the same picks (#249 and #273 respectively). Another two teams (Toronto Squad and Young & Dumb) had three Bengals WRs. Toronto Squad drafted A.J. Green, Tee Higgins and Auden Tate, while Young & Dumb went with Tyler Boyd, Tee Higgins and John Ross. Young & Dumb loves Bengals since they have those three WRs, two RBs (Mixon and Bernard) and rookie QB Joe Burrow.
  • TFFO figured that he wanted a piece of the New England running game, so they went out and drafted Sony Michel, James White, Damien Harris and J.J. Taylor. Rex Burkhead went undrafted in that league and at the end of the draft, TFFO had a little over $7 million in cap room. To avoid Rex having hurt feelings about this situation, TFFO should spend part on their leftover cap room if they still have it. Might as well go get Lamar Miller while you’re at it.
  • Not to be outdone, Boomer2377 drafted four Eagles WRs. They avoided both DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffrey for good reason and went with Jalen Reagor, Hightower, Ward and Watkins in that order. I’m guessing Boomer2377 is an Eagles fan because they also have both Carson Wentz and Jalen Hurts on their team as well.
  • Only four TEs had their backup drafted by the same team in more than one Dynasty Owner league. In addition to Engram, they were Darren Waller (handcuffed by Foster Moreau), Tyler Higbee (handcuffed by rookie Brycen Hopkins) and Austin Hooper (handcuffed by David Njoku). All these handcuffs were drafted twice.
  • The Clown Punchers took my recommendation of drafting three QBs (https://dynastyowner.com/2020/05/draft-tips-2020/), but possibly didn’t read the part about having them on different teams since they decided to draft three Kansas City QBs (Patrick Mahomes, Chad Henne and Jordan Ta’amu). Hopefully, Mahomes stays healthy and Matt Moore isn’t the backup, or The Clown Punchers will be in trouble.
  • Many Dynasty Owners like a good handcuff, but Pohlcat, a $100 entry fee league Dynasty Owner, really, really likes to handcuff backfield players. Pohlcat drafted Lamar Jackson and RGIII, Austin Ekeler and Joshua Kelley, Todd Gurley and Ito Smith, plus two potential Giants backups to Saquon Barkley in Dion Lewis and Wayne Gallman. No word on why Pohlcat didn’t handcuff any WRs or TEs.
  • Does it count as a handcuff if you draft the backup before the starter?  Asking for Ball Busters who drafted Quintez Cephus of the Lions with the #153 pick then took the starter in Detroit, Marvin Jones, over 100 picks later on with the #256 pick.
  • Finally, the Midwest Tradesman spent only $34 shy of $33 million, or 30% of their salary cap, on Bengals WRs when they drafted Tyler Boyd ($10.75 million), A.J. Green ($17.971 million) and John Ross ($4,278,966).

Conclusions

There are a lot of ways to handcuff your starters in Dynasty Owner, but really no consensus on which one is best or which starters are most worth a handcuff. It’s your Dynasty, handcuff your guys if you want to and with who you want. This analysis covered 43 Dynasty Owner leagues with over 500 teams that had 300 identified handcuffs of 74 different players. That’s a lot of variety, but also indicates that there are a lot of Dynasty Owners who, even in this era of COVID-19, aren’t handcuffing.

In terms of position, running back was the most handcuffed position and by league, Dynasty Owners in $100 leagues were most likely to utilize handcuffs. We had a surprise RB (James Conner) be the most handcuffed player overall, even though he has an ADP of 49.8 and is the 26th RB off the draft board on average. The top QB (Lamar Jackson) and WR (Michael Thomas) were more heavily handcuffed than other players at their position, but in line with other high draft picks like RBs Christian McCaffrey and Saquon Barkley. And if you handcuffed a TE, you are a rare breed indeed as I only identified 17 TE handcuffs in total, or half of leagues has a team with a handcuffed TE.

We are less than a month out from the 2020 NFL season and three are more articles coming from myself and Chris Wolf (@ckwolf21 on Twitter). The podcast series with myself and Dynasty Owner CEO Tim Peffer will continue to be posted on the Dynasty Owner channel on YouTube and other places (iTunes, Spotify, Spreaker) as well. Subscribe to the YouTube channel and make sure to “Like” all of the videos to help promote them. We have over 400 subscribers on YouTube now and thank you all for watching and listening. All of this great content is available to help you win your Dynasty Owner league and maybe become the winner of the 2020 Chase for the Ring!

Follow us on Twitter: @SteveVT33 and @Dynasty_Owner

Roster Roundup – Round Four: NFC South

Taking A Dive Into The Rosters From Around The League

Author: Chris Wolf

This time of year is typically the time when teams, trainers and agents hype up their players. We know how the world has changed in recent months and the NFL is no different in its approach to returning to “normalcy”. With the news of NFL staff and players testing positive for the Coronavirus, fantasy news is taking a backseat. As a result, fantasy players are missing out on the typical hyperbole surrounding pre-season roster news and notes.

In this series we’ll take a look at who’s who on rosters and how that may help in your drafts and early waivers.

Each week we’ll examine a division’s skill position current roster and predictive depth chart heading into training camp to see how that relates to their fantasy outlook.

Atlanta Falcons

HC: Dan Quinn

OC: Dirk Koetter

QB: Matt Ryan, Matt Schaub, Kurt Benkert, Danny Etling

RB: Todd Gurley, Brian Hill, Qadree Ollison, Ito Smith, Craig Reynolds, Mikey Daniel, Keith Smith

WR: Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley, Russel Gage, Laquon Treadwell, Christian Blake, Olamide Zaccheus, Devin Gray, Brandon Powell, Jalen McCleskey, Juwan Green, Chris Rowland

TE: Hayden Hurst, Khari Lee, Jaeden Graham, Carson Meier, Jared Pinkney, Caleb Repp

Matt Ryan is as reliable as they come. He has only missed one game in the last 10 years and unfortunately, is often overlooked. In the last decade, he has only one season where he hasn’t topped 4,000 yards. Ryan has also eclipsed 300+ yards in the 64 games he’s played. That is an insane rate of production for the 35-year-old out of Boston College. Ryan has a ton of targets in the passing game and should find his way back into the top 12 in QB scoring. The rest of the QB depth chart is very underwhelming with veteran Matt Schaub as the #2. Former LSU QB turned WR turned QB, Danny Etling is also present but has an uphill battle to make the team.

Todd Gurley is on a one-year contract valued at $5.5 million. He and his hefty contract were dumped by the Rams and one day later, Atlanta scooped him up to replace Devonta Freeman. Gurley is incredible when healthy and he is a true every down back when healthy. Health is a major concern when considering rostering Gurley. His arthritic right knee coupled with a history of an ACL tear, turf toe, and ankle sprains all are reasons for concern for Gurley. But, when he’s good, he’s really good. He is a natural pass catcher with an average of 9.6 yards per catch during his five-year career, he has also posted gaudy (again, when healthy) yards per carry averages of 4.8, 3.2, 4.7, 4.9, 3.8. Yards per carry is an overblown metric but it does tell a story here that he is elite when his body allows him to be. Still just 25 years old, he is hopeful to put together a solid season that extends his life in his home of Georgia.

Behind Gurley, there is little to be excited about. Ito Smith may be the first one up before Brian Hill, but both had their chance when Freeman went down last year. Smith is the shiftier of the two with better receiving chops and Brian Hill is between the 20’s guy to move the chains. The problem is…neither were effective when given the opportunity last year. Hill left all fantasy owners in the dust that took a chance on him in 2019 with 1.83 YPC in his two starts. Qadree Ollison is their goal line banger but is too one dimensional for much more.

Julio Jones is the best receiver in the NFL. There doesn’t need to be a debate, he wins. Yes, Michael Thomas had an extremely impressive season, but nobody does it better than Julio. He has 57 career TD’s, 55 games with at least 100+ yards and has amassed an incredible 12,125 yards. Just for perspective, Julio Jones’ 12,125 career yards is the equivalent of running from New Jersey to California 5 times over. He’s a beast and he’s primed for another solid campaign in 2020. As good as Jones is, he is the highest priced receiver around at $22 million per year. Calvin Ridley is a special talent and everyone with a voice is comparing his upcoming season to a Chris Godwin-like breakout. Ridley has already made an impact on this team in his first two seasons. So far, he has been targeted over 90 times, has over 60 receptions, went over 800 yards and has 17 touchdowns in two years. Those efficiency numbers are crazy for 90ish targets a year. In order for him to “breakout”, he will have to assume some of the 133 vacated targets from Austin Hooper and Mohamed Sanu. Russel Gage is an undervalued player in fantasy that could be in for an expanded role from his 69 targets in 2019. He trumps Ridley in reception percentage, drop rate, and yards after catch. That doesn’t mean Gage is in any way a better receiver, it means he operates on different parts of the field and route tree. Keep an eye on him when filling out the end of your bench. The Falcons have brought in former 1st rounder Laquon Treadwell and will attempt to get some value out of him as their 4th/5th receiver.

Austin Hooper was a target vacuum operating as Matt Ryan’s safety valve. He was lost in free agency to Cleveland, so the Falcons went out and traded 2nd and 4th round picks for Hayden Hurst in March. Hurst is a capable athlete and moves well for his size (6’4”/250lbs) and will fill in nicely as the intermediate pass target. A former minor league baseball player in the Pirates organization, Hurst walked on to South Carolina and set school records as a tight end in just his second year. He is 27 years old next month and is set to become a big part of this high-octane passing game. Hurst is a fantastic value at $2.8 with this year and next left on his contract.  Graham and Lee will be his direct backups and barring injury, will have a hard time with fantasy production.

Carolina Panthers

HC: Matt Rhule

OC: Joe Brady

QB: Teddy Bridgewater, Will Grier, PJ Walker

RB: Christian McCaffrey, Reggie Bonnafon, Jordan Scarlett, Mike Davis, Rodney Smith, Alex Armah

WR: DJ Moore, Robby Anderson, Curtis Samuel, Pharoh Cooper, Seth Roberts, DeAndrew White, Brandon Zylstra, Ishmael Hyman, Omar Bayless, Damion Jeanpeire JR, Keith Kirkwood, TreVontae Hights

TE: Ian Thomas, Chris Manhertz, Temarrick Hemmingway, Colin Thompson, Giovanni Ricci, Cam Sutton

Rookie head coach Matt Rhule is known for turning college programs around. He has his work cut out for him with the team that he inherited in Carolina though. With an abysmal 2019 defensive showing, the Panthers used every one of this year’s draft picks on defensive players. This team is in search of a new identity since the departure of 9-year head coach Ron Rivera, and franchise cornerstones Greg Olsen, Cam Newton and Luke Kuechly.

Rhule isn’t alone in the team’s rebuild, they also brought in new OC Joe Brady who served as the passing game coordinator for the National Champions LSU. The Panthers certainly have talent at the skill positions with fantasy star Christian McCaffrey, 2020 breakout WR DJ Moore, and newly acquired Robby Anderson. There should be plenty of opportunities for new QB Teddy Bridgewater to hike the ball in comeback mode. Bridgewater is a competent QB on a team friendly salary ($21 million/3 years) without much competition behind him. Will Grier got thrown into the fire last year as a rookie and did not perform well. It appeared it was too much too soon for the young Grier. Hopefully better days are ahead for him, but he will have to fight off XFL standout P.J. Walker for the NO.2 spot behind Bridgewater. Walker reunites with college coach Rhule after serving as the face of the XFL. He is a dual threat in both the pass and run game and is an intriguing player to add to the watch list especially since Bridgewater has only played a full 16 games once in 5 seasons in the NFL.

Christian McCaffrey is one of those players that you can build a team around in both real life and fantasy football. He is loved by his teammates and coaches for his incredible work ethic and he is just plain fun to watch. With him you get a RB1 and a WR1 in the same package. In his three seasons in the league, his rushing and receiving yards have gone up each year as well as his touchdowns, rush attempts, targets, yards per game and yards per catch. He is a fantasy owner’s dream with these incredible stats, and he is one of the last bellow backs playing over 92% of the snaps over the past two seasons. If you are comfortable with his $16 million per year salary, get this guy on your team. His backup predicts to be Reggie Bonnafon but apparently veteran journeyman, Mike Davis is also in the mix for the role of fantasy’s least used reserve running back.

The receiving group is led by 2019 breakout D.J. Moore. Moore’s target total was good for 10th in the league while having Will Grier and Kyle Allen under center. With what should be a pass heavy offense, Moore is sure to improve on his 87/1,175/4 line from 2020. Moore ($2.8 million/3 years) is a prime example of top talent meets low cost in Dynasty Owner. Joining Moore is former Jet Robby Anderson. Anderson was also coached by Rhule in his days at Temple University. Anderson’s 15 YPC are elite in NFL terms but he doesn’t quite mesh with Bridgewater’s style of play. Teddy B is not known for his downfield throwing prowess but hopefully that all changes this year. The often-overlooked Curtis Samuel rounds out the starting Panthers’ receivers and we can only hope this coaching staff can tap into Samuel’s potential. He is a dynamic playmaker that just seemed to play out of position the last few seasons. He is uniquely capable of being a sure-handed possession type receiver as well as going down field. It is now Ian Thomas time. Greg Olsen had a fantastic career as a Panther. He has since moved on to the Las Vegas Raiders, opening the door for the freakishly athletic Ian Thomas. Thomas was drawing attention as early as his rookie year training camp. Entering his third year, the former fourth round pick is poised to take a big leap as a full time starter after filling in admirably for the oft injured Olsen.

New Orleans Saints

HC: Sean Payton

OC: Pete Carmichael

QB: Drew Brees, Taysom Hill, Jameis Winston, Tommy Stevens

RB: Alvin Kamara, Latavius Murray, Ty Montgomery, Dwayne Washington, Taquan Mizzell, Ricky Ortiz, Tony Jones Jr, Mike Burton

WR: Michael Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, Tre’Quan Smith, Deonte Harris, Austin Carr, Lil’Jordan Humphrey, Juwan Johnson, Marquez Callaway, Krishawn Hogan, Emmanuel Butler, Tommylee Lewis, Maurice Harris

TE: Jared Cook, Josh Hill, Adam Trautman, Garrett Griffin, Jason Vander Laan, Cole Wick

The Saints may just have the best overall team on paper. They are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball and are a favorite to go deep into the playoffs. Sean Payton has done an incredible job as head coach and play caller in his 13 seasons as head coach. The Saints are perceived to be in win now mode and they just might have the roster to award Payton with his second Lombardi trophy.  The team’s heart and soul reside with the player that wears #9. Drew Brees is iconic and has done more for the Saints organization than any other player in their history. His rapidly declining arm strength is a problem since that was always a big part of his game, but Payton adjusted accordingly the last two years and it has worked out well so far.

Brees is a bit of a Jekyl and Hyde when it comes to home/road splits. When he is home playing in a dome, he’s a must start in fantasy. When they are away is when things get dicey. He scores nearly four less fantasy points when he is away. Things may even out a bit in 2020 considering that he may not be taking so many deep shots by design. Brees’ salary is mid-range at $25 million and is in the range of Brady, Carr, Rivers. A big downer for Brees is Taysom Hill’s presence in Red Zone packages. Used more as a runner/receiver than a passer, Hill is a serious threat when the ball touches his hands. He more closely resembles a TE than a rushing QB, Hill is a gritty player that has a high price tag for a sub package QB. Rounding out the mentionable QBs is Jameis Winston. The former Buccaneer has a notorious 2019 season and was handed his walking papers by Bruce Arians and co. He signed an extremely modest deal to learn under Payton and Brees and hopes to turn his career around in 2021.

The running game again figures to be the focal point of the Saint’s offense. Kamara is a game changer but was hampered by back, knee and ankle injuries last year limiting him to just 14 games. Not only does he get the starter’s share of carries, he also averages 6 catches per game in his career. Expecting a return to form, Kamara is expected to return to top 3-5 RB status and offers a great one-year rental rate of less than $1 million this year. Latavius Murray was the number one back in fantasy when he was covering for Kamara in his 3 missed games last year. When given a chance, he could be a monster back behind this beast of an offensive line. The problem is; this offense hasn’t generated enough touches for Murray to be a viable start with a healthy Kamara in the lineup. Yes, Kamara and Mark Ingram were both top 6 fantasy back in 2017 but they also didn’t have a mature Michael Thomas soaking up 149 receptions. Ty Mongomery expects to be Alvin Kamara’s direct handcuff for 2020. Montgomery is a fun player to watch because he has the natural hands of a receiver but the running ability of a running back. Now liberated from Adam Gase’s rule, Montgomery might just niche himself a nice role in an offense led by a coach that may actually know how to use him.

This passing attack goes through one man. Michael Thomas has set an NFL record for most receptions (470) and receiving yards (5,512) in the first four years of his career. He is a true target monster that hauled in an incredible 149 receptions for 1,725 yards on an insane 80.5% catch rate. All of those metrics were NFL bests in 2019 and his receptions were good for an NFL best all-time! He figures to pick up where he left off last season but now, he has legitimate help across from him. Emmanuel Sanders proved many wrong last year as he quickly rebounded from a 2018 Achilies injury to produce a line of 66/869/5 while kicking in three 100-yard games during his stay with Denver and then San Francisco. Sanders is a spry 33-year-old that is sitting on a 2 year $16 million and is a low ceiling yet viable option in this Saints highly efficient offense. Tre’Quan Smith figures in as their WR 3-4 and the Saints are still holding out hope that he begins to put it together. Once touted as their answer to their WR2 search, Smith is long on athleticism but has yet to find all of the pieces to complete the puzzle. Often appearing lost and running the wrong routes, Smith will need to do more to make an impact in 2020. An intriguing prospect is Juwan Johnson out of Oregon by way of Penn State. At 6’4” and 230lbs, Johnson is a jump ball leaper with crazy good hands but unpolished route running. If he can clean up his game, he is someone to keep one eye on.

Jared Cook is on his 5th team in 11 NFL seasons. He eclipsed his career best 6 TD’s by scoring 9 times last year. He is a much needed big-bodied red zone threat in this offense but is somewhat limited between the 20’s with the chain-moving targets going to Thomas (188) and Kamara (104). Cook will continue his role in 2020 as a reliable red zone target and should see minimal competition from fellow TE’s Josh Hill (35 targets in 2019) and rookie Adam Trautman. Trautman is a future No.1 tight end in the NFL that may not need too long to acclimate to pro football life. PFF has graded him out as the #1 receiving talent in this year’s TE class and 2018’s as well. With training camp restrictions and no pre-season, it may be difficult for Trautman (or any rookie) to see an expanded early season role, especially in the receiving game.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

HC: Bruce Arians

OC: Byron Leftwich

QB: Thomas Brady, Blaine Gabbert, Ryan Griffin, Reid Sinnett

RB: Ronald Jones II, Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Dare Ogunbowale, LeSean McCoy, Raymond Calais, TJ Logan, Aca’Cedric Ware

WR: Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Scott Miller, Justin Watson, Tyler Johnson, Spencer Schnell, Jaydon Mickens, Travis Jonsen, Codey McElroy, Cyril Grayson, John Hurst, Bryant Mitchell, Josh Pearson

TE: Rob Gronkowski, O.J. Howard, Cameron Brate, Tanner Hudson, Anthony Auclair, Jordan Leggett

If there is an NFL team that is built to win now, it’s the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. On the surface, the Buccaneers are racing against father time to win the second Super Bowl in franchise history. Tom Brady appears to have two years (at $25 million) left before hitting the links and Bruce Arians and Rob Gronkowski are sure to be right behind him. The coaching staff appears to have worthy successors but the QB room does not. Ryan Griffin is a locker room favorite that has shined in the preseason over the years, but he has never been elevated to No.2 on the depth chart, except for injury. Blaine Gabbert’s claim to fame was the unseating of Colin Kaepernick in San Francisco right before “the kneel”. He was a former Rivals.com 5-star recruit before landing in Missouri and has since bounced around between five NFL teams while owning a 48-47 TD to INT ratio. Brady is the GOAT and is sure to want to silence critics by winning yet another championship, this time without Bill Belichick. He has an enormous amount of talent surrounding but an even greater source of experience to draw from. As I tweeted back in April:

That is an insane number of trips to the endzone for these starters.

The running back position is a bit murky, but they do have a capable group. Ronald Jones bounced back nicely last year after a forgetful rookie season. He was held to a committee role with Peyton Barber and Dare Ogunbowale last year but that just may be what he is cut out for. When given the chance, he brought the juice to Barber’s molasses and gave the offense a shot in the arm with his big playmaking ability. Coming out of USC in 2018 he was criminally compared by some scouts and tauts to Jamaal Charles. Charles was a natural pass catcher and Jones was not. The breakaway speed is comparable, but the similarities end there. Jones did progress in the passing game last year when given the opportunity but the 3rd down role was owned by Ogunbowale.

Vaughn was most likely not the ideal pick at RB for Arians but it’s who they went with. He was an every down back at Vanderbilt and he can do a fine job in the run, pass and pass protection categories but he is a master of none. He’s not a punisher like Jonathan Taylor nor is he a pass catching specialist like CEH or Swift and he doesn’t have the playmaking ability of Cam Akers. Although, he just might have what it takes for this offense and that’s becoming a role player, not a superstar. This team is full of household names but that might not be needed when lining up behind Brady. Brady loves checking down and passing to his backs but what he loves more is keeping a clean jersey. Late edition, LeSean McCoy may help out here but is no lock to make this team after signing at the vet minimum for 1 year $1 million. Whichever back steps up in that department will certainly get their fair portion of the snaps.

The strength of this offense has been the receivers since Mike Evans ($16.5 million/4 years) came aboard in 2014. The strength continues in 2020 with his fellow Pro Bowl teammate Chris Godwin and up and coming talent like Scotty Miller, Justin Watson and Tyler Johnson. This is very good depth with Evans and Godwin obviously leading the way. Godwin is extremely versatile and can play inside or outside. He is equally tough playing off ball with his blocking as he is with the ball in his hands. He is working on a very attractive salary in 2020 at $821,000 and should be one of the first receivers off the board in drafts. Miller is an electric player with crazy straight-line speed, but he is being typecast as strictly a slot receiver by those outside of the organization. He and big slot Justin Watson figure to duke it out for WR3 honors while possible steal of the draft Tyler Johnson gets up to speed. Johnson was rated with PFF’s highest receiving grade in college football in 2018 and 2019. His college efficiency was off the charts improving every year leading to an impressive senior year where he averaged over 100yds and a TD a game while posting a 71.1 catch rate. He was overlooked in the pre-draft process allegedly for a falling out with a coach(s) but he has proclaimed that he will outperform everyone’s expectations.

On paper, this tight end group just isn’t fair. They have enough talent and experience for two NFL teams. The Bucs like to keep 6 receivers but may be forced to keep 5 if Calais wins the return job, they may not need to keep a sixth WR and instead use the roster spot on another TE. Gronk is the only lock but Howard and Brate don’t look like they are going anywhere anytime soon. Auclair is the long snapper, occasional FB and in-line blocker as well as locker room favorite. Hudson is a coach’s favorite that played very well in preseason last year and the coaching staff already said that he would have a role on this team. That would be five tight ends on the roster making the Chicago Bears very jealous.

That is the NFC South! We hope you enjoyed the read. Check back soon! We will continue with the AFC East next week.

Follow us on Twitter: @CKWolf21 and @Dynasty_Owner

Playoff Finals Preview – Who’s Going to Win the Ring?

Author: Steven Van Tassell

It’s League Championship week and the end of the first Dynasty Owner Chase for the Ring. Everyone who made it this far still has a chance to win the Ring, but they first need to win their League to stake their claim. We have a favorite in our #1 team (New York’s Strongest), but will they be able to run the table with an undefeated season, League Championship and victory in the Chase for the Ring?

Who else are potential contenders for the Ring? What are their chances of winning? Which player or players can provide those teams with an advantage over the competition in the Chase or does everyone in the Top 10 in the Chase for the Ring have the same players?

We’ll answer those questions and more in our final Dynasty Owner preview article of the season. In a change from normal, we will be taking a quick look at the Top 10 teams in the Chase for the Ring and assessing their chances at winning it. We’ll also so our usual thing and pick some players who should be in your Active lineup for the League Championship games and some who you should Bench, as well as review last week’s recommendations.

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 .25 points for every 10 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.

Activate These Guys

First, we’ll look at last week and see how my playoff semi-finals recommendations worked out (Good, Bad or Just Ok). I recommended having the following players Active last week:

  • QB: Tom Brady – 18.2 points (Just Ok recommendation)
  • RB: Kenyan Drake – 41.6 points (Good recommendation)
  • WR: Danny Amendola – 18.2 points (Good recommendation)
  • TE: Ian Thomas – 4.3 points (Bad recommendation)

Overall, a decent set of recommendations. Kenyan Drake was the Value Player of the Week and a match-up winner for his Dynasty Owners, while Amendola was a Top 20 WR. Brady had a similar number of points as a lot of QBs last week, while Thomas didn’t perform up to the level predicted. These predictions are critical for the Championship game in everyone’s league. Let’s see if we can have four good recommendations of players who should be Active this week.

Mitchell Trubisky (QB – CHI): Despite averaging 25.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in his past six games and 28.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points in his past four games, Trubisky is still outside the Top 20 QBs for the season. He’s almost universally rostered (93%) so there have to be some Dynasty Owners in their League Championship game with him on the roster. Have you made it this far without the benefit of having Lamar Jackson on your team? If so and Trubisky is on your roster, consider making him Active for the Bears match-up against the Chiefs on Sunday Night Football.

Ronald Jones II (RB – TB): While Jones appears to be in a timeshare with Peyton Barber, Jones is the Tampa Bay RB who catches more passes. Injuries to the top two Tampa Bay WRs (Mike Evans and Chris Godwin) may lead Jameis Winston to throw more passes Jones’ way in the Buccaneers game against the Texans. The Texans defense has struggled since J.J. Watt got injured and has allowed an average of 21.3 Dynasty Owner fantasy points to RBs over the past five weeks. If you need a replacement for Dalvin Cook or an underperforming RB, feel comfortable putting Jones in your Active lineup.

Tyler Boyd (WR – CIN): In three games against pass defenses in the bottom 10 in the NFL (Arizona, Oakland and Seattle), Boyd has averaged 14.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game. If we take out the Oakland game when Ryan Finley, not Andy Dalton, was at QB, it rises to 21.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game. The Dolphins are the 24th ranked pass defense in the NFL and Dalton is back at QB for the Bengals. The leading WR against the Dolphins in the past five weeks is averaging 28.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. That’s Boyd this week, so you should get him in your Active lineup.

Jacob Hollister (TE – SEA): Hollister was a trendy pick-up back a few weeks ago after he put up consecutive 20.0+ Dynasty Owner fantasy point performances against the Buccaneers and 49ers. However, he has faded in the past couple of weeks since Seattle’s bye and averaged only 6.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points the past four weeks. Now, he gets to play against the worst defense in the NFL against TEs in the Arizona Cardinals. Back in Week 4, Seattle TE Will Dissly scored 17.7 Dynasty Owner fantasy points against the Cardinals. He’s injured now and Hollister will be the beneficiary of the Cardinals’ inability to cover TEs. Hollister is rostered in over half (52%) of Dynasty Owner leagues and his Owners should feel comfortable having him Active this week.

Bench These Guys

Now, let’s look at last week and see how my Bench recommendations worked out (Good, Bad or Just Ok) in the playoff semi-finals when I recommended having the following players on the Bench:

  • QB: Aaron Rodgers – 18.5 points (Just Ok recommendation)
  • RB: Dalvin Cook – 7.3 points (Good recommendation)
  • WR: John Brown – 16.9 points (Bad recommendation)
  • TE: Austin Hooper – 5.0 points (Good recommendation)

Same record for my Bench recommendations as the Active ones – two Good, one Just Ok and one Bad. It’s critical for everyone in their League Championship and the Chase for the Ring to Bench those guys who aren’t going to perform well this week. Hopefully all four of this week’s Bench recommendations are Good ones.  Here are some players who Dynasty Owners drafted to use or have been using in their Active lineup, but would be better if they sat on the Bench during the playoff finals.

Kyler Murray (QB – ARI): Murray has struggled in the three games since the Cardinals Week 12 bye – averaging just 15.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game. Even with those struggles, he’s still the #8 QB in Dynasty Owner. All of the past three games were at home and this week, he faces Seattle on the road in a tough environment. Seattle has something to play for as they need a victory to stay in first place in the NFC West. In the Cardinals first game against the Seahawks, Murray didn’t throw a TD pass and only had 17.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. He’ll struggle again this week so leave him on your Bench.

Le’Veon Bell (RB – NYJ): Some analysts might pick Bell as a player to be Active since he’s back playing against the Steelers in a “revenge” game. Those analysts are ignoring the reality of Bell’s performance all season long and recently against much weaker competition than Pittsburgh. Bell has averaged a solid, but not spectacular 14.5 Dynasty Owner fantasy points per game this season. However, he hasn’t taken advantage of playing against some really poor run defenses (Cincinnati, Miami, New York Giants, Washington) in the past couple of weeks with only a slight improvement in points – 16.2 Dynasty Owner fantasy points. Pittsburgh is a lot better than all of those teams, so if you have better options, then Bench Bell in your League Championship game.

Julian Edelman (WR – NE): Edelman had his worst week of the season in the playoff semi-finals putting up only 2.9 Dynasty Owner fantasy points against the Bengals. His second worst week was way back in Week 4 when he was limited to just 6.0 Dynasty Owner fantasy points by the Bills. The Patriots are playing the Bills once again this week. Edelman is dealing with an injury, definitely played hurt last week and has been limited in practice this week. Edelman helped get you to the Dynasty Owner playoffs as the #5 WR for only $5.5 million in annual salary, but since he is injured and playing the Bills, you should keep him on your Bench.

Tyler Higbee (TE – LAR): Higbee just climbed into the Top 10 TEs after his performance the past three weeks and is rostered in 37% of Dynasty Owner leagues – up from 11% back in Week 13 when he started on his roll of great games. If you’re one of those Owners who has been rolling with Higbee the past couple of weeks – Congratulations! However, having him Active this week based on his prior three weeks would be a mistake. First, he’s not playing the Cardinals or Seattle this week, he’s facing the 49ers who rank second in fantasy points allowed to TEs according to Pro Football Reference. Second, the 49ers held Higbee and Gerald Everett to only 8.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points combined back in Week 6. Finally, Higbee has had the TE position pretty much to himself as Everett was out the past three weeks. Everett is back this week and the two might split time and receptions so sitting Higbee on the Bench is the right move.

Chase for the Ring – Top 10 Contenders

For the Finals, we are changing things up and looking at the Top 10 Contenders in the Chase for the Ring. We’ll go in reverse order and look at the exclusive Dynasty Owner score projections for their League Championship game, highlight a key player or players they need to win their game and keep their Ring hopes alive and rate their chances of winning the Chase for the Ring.

Surprisingly, the current Active lineups (minus kickers) for the Top 10 Contenders very considerably and feature 34 separate players. The most owned players are Christian McCaffrey and Michael Thomas (6 teams each), followed by Travis Kelce (4 teams). Nobody else, including #1 overall Dynasty Owner player Lamar Jackson, is Active for more than three teams in the Top 10. The updated Chase for the Ring standings are as follows:

Number 10 – Yorkshire Roses (2012 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

The European-based Yorkshire Roses hold the #10 spot in the Chase after finishing with a 9-5 record and in 18th place in the Chase regular season. They have made quite a move in just one week to crack the Top 10. They are 219 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place, 34 points out of ninth place and need pretty much all of the Contenders ahead of them to lose to be fitted for the Ring. They have a match-up against Whodey & the Blowfish that they are expected to win by a tight margin of 133.5-126.1.

  • The good news is that they have three players (Saquon Barkley, Kenny Golladay and Carlos Hyde) who aren’t Active for any other Top 10 team. Hyde, in particular, will be critical for Yorkshire Roses hopes to win their League Championship and stay in the Chase for the Ring. Hyde will need to better his best game of the season (18.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points last week) for the Roses to move up the Chase standings.

Number 10 – Yorkshire Roses (2012 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

The European-based Yorkshire Roses hold the #10 spot in the Chase after finishing with a 9-5 record and in 18th place in the Chase regular season. They have made quite a move in just one week to crack the Top 10. They are 219 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place, 34 points out of ninth place and need pretty much all of the Contenders ahead of them to lose to be fitted for the Ring. They have a match-up against Whodey & the Blowfish that they are expected to win by a tight margin of 133.5-126.1.

  • The good news is that they have three players (Saquon Barkley, Kenny Golladay and Carlos Hyde) who aren’t Active for any other Top 10 team. Hyde, in particular, will be critical for Yorkshire Roses hopes to win their League Championship and stay in the Chase for the Ring. Hyde will need to better his best game of the season (18.4 Dynasty Owner fantasy points last week) for the Roses to move up the Chase standings.

Number 8 – Up Country Degens (2049 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

Up Country Degens hold the #8 spot in the Chase, just as they did at the end of the regular season, in which they finished with a 12-2 record. They are 182 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place, but just 13 points out of seventh place. Up Country Degens also need most (if not all) of the Contenders ahead of them to lose plus roll up some points. They face Alex’s Team in their League Championship and are projected to win by single digits – 138.5-130.3.

  • Carson Wentz is the Up Country Degens’ QB right now over Kyler Murray. A good game by Wentz will help the Degens win and move up in the Chase standings as no other Contenders have him as their Active QB. They are also the only Contenders with Stefon Diggs Active.

Number 7 – Puck Fittsburgh (2062 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

Podcast regular Puck Fittsburgh holds down the #7 spot in the Chase, moving up from 9th in the regular season. They finished the regular season with a 10-4 record, but have to face their League regular season champ, the Day Drinkers who are #13 in the Chase for the Ring, to keep their Ring hopes alive. They are 169 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place and 25 points behind the #6 team, so plenty of help is needed for them to win the Ring. However, it’s not outside the realm of possibility. In their League Championship game, Puck Fittsburgh is expected to handle the Day Drinkers pretty handily by a 137.1-119.6 margin.

  • They are the only Contender with both Drew Brees and Leonard Fournette Active. When the season started, I doubt Puck Fittsburgh planned on having Breshard Perriman Active over Julian Edelman at WR in the Championship game. That’s what he’s going with right now. Good performances by Brees, Fournette and Perriman will help Puck Fittsburgh win their League Championship and maybe the Ring.

Number 6 – Run CMC (2087 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

The only team to move down in the Chase for the Ring standings after the semi-finals was Run CMC. They are in the #6 spot in the Chase after finishing in 5th in the regular season with a 13-1 record. They are 144 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place in the Chase for the Ring and get to face K-Hunta’z Gunna’z in their League Championship game. They need a better performance this week and losses by the top five teams in the Chase to win the Ring. Run CMC is supposed to win a close game versus K-Hunta’z Gunna’z by a 141.8-133.6 margin.

  • Run CMC obviously has Christian McCaffrey at RB, but is trotting out an interesting WR corps of Robert Woods and Breshard Perriman for their League Championship. Only Run CMC has Woods in their Active lineup among Top 10 Chase teams and he could be a difference maker.

Number 5 – Young Gunz (2112 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

The Young Gunz finished the regular season with a 12-2 record and were the team that moved ahead of Run CMC after the playoff semi-finals. Currently, they occupy the #5 spot and are 119 Dynasty Owner fantasy points out of first place in the Chase for the Ring. They face Bye Week in their League Championship game, but are a slight underdog and expected to lose 130.6-126.4. They will need to win their League first if they want to keep their slim chances alive to win the Ring.

  • The loss of Chris Godwin leaves the Young Gunz relying on either Terry McLaurin or Dede Westbrook as their second Active WR. Whoever they choice to make Active could be the difference maker in the Chase for the Young Gunz since no other Contenders has either in their Active lineup.

Number 4 – Recyclers (2139 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

Recyclers are the #4 seed in the Chase for the Ring and only 92 points behind the top seed, but just two points out of third place.  Jumping over one team and hoping the Top 2 teams lose doesn’t seem too unlikely so the Recyclers appear to have a slight chance at the Ring. They breezed through the regular season with a 13-1 record and face a slightly depleted TE Ertz When Eifert team in their League Championship game. Recyclers are projected to win by a 141.0-130.8 margin, but could face a closer game if TE Ertz When Eifert can find an adequate replacement RB for Josh Jacobs.

  • Amari Cooper and Tyler Higbee are two players who are Active for Recyclers but nobody else in the Top 10 of the Chase for the Ring. Solid performances by both of them would go a long way towards a League Championship victory and then seeing what happens to the teams above them in the Chase.

Number 3 – Haddonfield Shapes (2141 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

Haddonfield Shapes are the team holding the #3 spot in the Chase for the Ring. They are 90 points behind the top seed, but just two points ahead of Recyclers. They finished the regular season 12-2 and get to face Ambassador Millerr in their League Championship game. They are expected to win 133.7-123.5 but if the projections are correct, they will fall behind the Recyclers and reduce their chances to win the Ring.

  • Julian Edelman currently occupies one of the Active WR spots for Haddonfield Shapes and will be a key player for them this week. They are the only Contender with Edelman Active and a more typical Edelman performance than what we saw last week could keep them ahead of the Recyclers in the Chase. They also have Aaron Jones in their Active lineup – the only Top 10 team with him Active at RB.

Number 2 – Florida Storm (2170 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

Florida Storm only finished the regular season with a 11-3 record, but are the #2 seed in the Chase for the Ring. They are 61 points behind the top seed and 29 points ahead of Haddonfield Shapes, so they likely need a loss by the top team to be fitted for the Ring. They match up against the Flying Pigs in their League Championship game and are expected to win handily by a 150.2-114.6 margin.

  • They have both Deshaun Watson and DeAndre Hopkins Active and is one of only two teams in the Top 10 with a QB-WR stack (Puck Fittsburgh is the other one with Drew Brees and Michael Thomas). Zach Ertz is the Active TE for the Florida Storm and no other Top 10 team. As a result, a 30.0+ Dynasty Owner fantasy point game by Ertz like he has done twice this season could be what Florida Storm needs to win the Ring. Of course, a game like his last one versus Dallas (5.8 Dynasty Owner fantasy points) would hurt those chances tremendously.

Number 1 – New York’s Strongest (2231 Dynasty Owner fantasy points)

New York’s Strongest is certainly the favorite in the Chase for the Ring after an undefeated regular season and with a 60 point lead over Florida Storm. Their opponent is Budney who has suffered several injuries in the past few weeks (Chris Godwin, Josh Jacobs, Ryan Griffin) and is operating at less than full strength. As a result, New York’s Strongest are expected to win 151.2-115.2 over Budney to clinch their League Championship and a likely Ring ceremony with visits to Chipotle and the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton sometime next year.

  • Nothing fancy here. New York’s Strongest has relied on the top QB, RB, WR and TE (Lamar Jackson, Christian McCaffrey, Michael Thomas and Travis Kelce) to lead them to the top spot in the Chase and just need them to perform at their usual level to win the Ring. They are the only Contender with all four of them on their team.

New York’s Strongest should hold on and win the Ring. They have one of the least competitive League Championship games and a 60 point advantage in the Chase. I fully expect Eddie to complete his perfect season and earn the Ring and everything that goes along with it. We’ll find out on Tuesday in our recap article.

Don’t miss the last recap article of the Dynasty Owner season to find out who wins the Ring and is named the best Dynasty Owner!

Steven Van Tassell is a freelance writer for Dynasty Owner.

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