1st and 10 with DFF Week 8 by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles
“1st and 10 with DFF” is a weekly segment of fantasy insights and a joint endeavor between the Dynasty Football Factory and Utter-Fantasy Football. We will canvass some of the hot button topics to keep us all informed on the ever-changing NFL landscape and which may carry major fantasy implications.
Michael Goins is the owner of Dynasty Football Factory, which is a website that you must visit daily, or you are missing out on great fantasy football, especially dynasty formatted fantasy football. Follow him on twitter
On Monday afternoon, approximately 2:00 PM Central, I will post the latest segment in “1st & 10 with DFF.” If you enjoy it, let us know. If you have any fantasy football questions for Michael, really let us know.
Week 8- May 9th, 2016
Special Guest Writer-Dynasty Football Factory’s Michael Vincent. Be sure to follow Michael on Twitter @MVtweetshere
Utter-Fantasy #1) I believe Robert Griffin III has something to prove, and that he’ll be surprisingly successful in 2016. Furthermore, I believe that he will easily hold off veteran QB McCown and 3rd Round Draft pick USC’s Cody Kessler for the entire year. How do you think he fairs this season?
DFF Response) I need to agree with you here. So many quarterbacks over the last few seasons have had a career resurgence with a change of scenery. That has gone for veterans and younger players that did not get a chance to showcase their talents at their first landing spot. Players like Carson Palmer and Ryan Fitzpatrick have been left for dead over and over, but continue to produce into their mid-thirties and both arguably had their best seasons in 2015. Palmer was 35, on his third team and 13th season. Fitzpatrick did it in his 11th season at age 33 on his sixth stop! Let’s not forget about the greatest free agent signing of all time, Drew Brees, resurrecting his career in New Orleans after being shown the door in San Diego to make way for Philip Rivers. Tyrod Taylor was a relative afterthought as a backup in Baltimore before signing with Buffalo prior to the 2015 season and beating out E.J. Manuel for the starting spot. What RGIII did in 2012 was not an accident. There was a reason he burst onto the scene. Bad luck, injuries, and an odd coaching situation left him in no-man’s land last year, and it didn’t help him that Kirk Cousins took the starting job and never looked back. Griffin may get a chance to do it all over again in for Cleveland with the likes of Duke Johnson, Isaiah Crowell, Gary Barnidge and a trio of rookie receivers in Corey Coleman, Rashard Higgins and Jordan Taylor. A purge of negativity and distractions in Cleveland over the last few years may bode well for Griffin, who could be the answer that so many others have tried to be. (Answered by DFF’s @mvtweetshere)
Utter-Fantasy #2) I thought the Alabama RB Derrick Henry selection by the Titans was a questionable selection to make because he reminds me a back that they “already have” in DeMarco Murray. (Henry is a downhill runner who has an underrated burst and can break off long runs). Does Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott who was selected by Dallas, remind you of anyone?
DFF Response) From a physical stand point Elliott reminds me of Matt Forte. Their metrics are comparable in terms of size and agility. In terms of running, Zeke reminds me of a faster version of Doug Martin. His landing spot is not comparable to anyone though. I feel as if the 1.01 in rookie draft is more valuable this year than it has been a long time. (Answered by DFF’s IDP Guru @DFF_Josh)
Utter-Fantasy #3) Do you think Cincinnati did in enough in free agency and the 2016 NFL Draft to replace who they lost in their receiving corps?
DFF Response) The Bengals lost Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones to free agency after both became too expensive to keep around. Both seemed to want WR1 money, but landed in very questionable situations in Atlanta and Detroit, where Sanu goes from A.J. Green’s shadow to Julio Jones shadow for the Falcons, and Jones goes to Detroit where he will spend the better part of his prime being compared to Calvin Johnson. The Bengals may miss them in terms of athleticism and skill set, but they will not have trouble filling the 152 targets that departed this offseason. Jones had the second most targets on the team in 2015, trailing only A.J. Green, but Sanu was the fifth most targeted Bengal, behind Green, Jones, tight end Tyler Eifert and running back Giovani Bernard. Their departures will be filled in a twofold process. First, Eifert and Bernard’s role will most likely expand in 2016. Eifert was a red zone machine last season, coming down with 13 touchdown catches and should only continue to get better if he’s used everywhere on the field. Bernard will continue to thrive in his change-of-pace role, unless Jeremy Hill becomes a more well-rounded back (and stops fumbling.) The other side of the coin is the younger players stepping up, most notably rookie second round pick Tyler Boyd and second year wide receiver Mario Alford. In my opinion, Boyd had the best landing spot among all the rookie receivers and should thrive in a role that fits his style of play. Brandon LaFell was also brought in as a free agent and may be able to carve himself a role in the offense if no one steps up. The lazy answer is MORE AJ GREEN, of course. (Answered by DFF’s @mvtweetshere)
Utter-Fantasy #4) Former HC Tom Coughlin has stated many times now that he’s not ready to retire and would like another team to coach. I think it would be interesting to see Jon Gruden coach again. Is there a former head coach you’d like to see in the NFL again?
DFF Response) Of all the great recent NFL coaches to run an NFL franchise, Tony Dungy is one I’d like to see return. Not only was he the first African-American coach to win a Super Bowl, but he also was intuitive enough to design his own defense–Tampa 2–with a completely different team. Dungy’s philosophy would easily adapt to the modern NFL. In fact, he would most likely be on the forefront of the newest craze, similar to the read-option explosion a few years back. (Answered by DFF’s Giants truther and Pigskin Paradise WR1 hoarder @DFF_Rich)
Utter-Fantasy #5) Was it too early for Indianapolis to take a center in the 1st Round, 18th overall selection in the 2016 NFL Draft? (I thought it was a great selection because they needed a good one for QB Andrew Luck)
DFF Response) According to Matt Zenitz of AL.com, there was only one Pro Day attended by both Indianapolis Colts general manager Ryan Grigson and Colts coach Chuck Pagano. That was for Ryan Kelly, the former Tide center whom Indianapolis selected in the first round of the NFL draft last week (No. 18 overall). The Colts had targeted Kelly “for months” leading up to the draft, Grigson told reporters in Indianapolis during a news conference last week. I don’t think it’s a reach if it’s a glaring need. They targeted him, they scouted him tremendously, and they got him. He was the top ranked center in this draft (25th overall) and had a round 1-2 grade, according to CBS Sports. To put it in perspective, the second ranked center in the draft was ranked 65th overall among all players and received a round 2-3 grade. Only six centers had a projected draft selection of 6-7th or better. They took the best available player at a position that they drastically needed , and he would not have been there the next time around for the Colts, who did not pick again until the 57th pick of the draft. (Answered by DFF’s @mvtweetshere)
Utter-Fantasy #6) Some talented tight ends were grabbed in this recent draft, with a couple being calling “can’t miss” selections, but people were saying that last year about Baltimore’s Maxx Williams and in 2014 about Detroit’s Eric Ebron. Would you agree that the tight end is a very capricious position in the NFL and least lends itself to the predictability of “can’t miss” players?
DFF Response) Due to the fantasy aspect, more attention is brought to the lack of immediate success from younger tight ends. While success early in a player’s career is always welcomed, it should not be expected from this position during the first two, and sometimes even three years in the league. In dynasty, these players make great stashes, as their values will likely depreciate after the rookie draft in the same way a car loses value once you drive it off the lot. The term “can’t miss” is used to create more buzz around the draft and to draw in hopeful fans but it is still accurate when referring to some of these tight end prospects in the same regard as quarterbacks or offensive lineman who receive the same praise. (Answered by DFF’s Mock Draft expert @DFF_Zach)
Utter-Fantasy #7) The Broncos selected QB Paxton Lynch with the 26th overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. The last time Denver selected a QB late in the 1st round, was big bust Tebow in 2010. Why will this selection turn out better for the Broncos?
DFF Response) I do not believe that Tebow was a bust for the Broncos; he took over in 2011 and led the team to the playoffs after taking over a team that was 1-4. He was then traded after Denver signed Manning. It’s hard to argue that he could have been better than Manning and I won’t even begin to try to do that. I do think Lynch will turn out to be a better pick then Tebow because the Broncos have that defense behind him. We saw that defense take a worn down, beat up and bad QB in Manning and win a Super Bowl. Another thing that is playing into Lynch’s favor is the fact that he has two dynamic wide receivers at his disposal in Sanders and Thomas, as well as a running game that turned it on towards the end of the year. That defense will allow Lynch to go through growing pains and yet still succeed. The last move notable deal Elway did for a QB was getting Peyton Manning and we all saw how that turned out. Even if Lynch doesn’t start immediately, he’ll be able to sit back and learn from Mr. Butt Fumble. The reigns will be handed over to him at some point. The Broncos front office and coaching staff are a very smart group and they know what they have in Lynch. I see them putting him in the game when all parties agree he’s matured and ready to be an NFL quarterback. (Answered by DFF’s ADP Grunt Austin Brunk @DFF_Brunkie21)
Utter-Fantasy #8) Defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh was clearly a disappointment ( if not a bust) for Miami last season, especially considering his monstrous contract he got and now his teammates are “privately steamed” about the high-priced defensive tackle skipping voluntary workouts. Don’t you think for many players, that they lose a ton of their competitiveness, when money is never again an issue….or themselves or for any of their family members….for generations to come?
DFF Response) SUHHHHHHHHH, being a lions fan I was able to watch his best and some of his worst moments. I think there are many athletes that tend to skip voluntary workouts, whether it be due to contract negations, or them not wanting to workout with the team and more so with their personal trainer. We hear examples of it all the time. This is just Suh being Suh. He had a down year in 2015 mainly because he wasn’t surrounded by the same defensive weapons as he was around in Detroit. I guess we’ll see how it plays out this year. I do think many players find their competitiveness level drops due to a huge contract signing. The contract he signed sets up his family for years to come as long as he’s able to manage it properly and not waste it all. I think Suh was playing his hardest to get that pay day and he deserved it. While in Detroit, he played at his tip top game. All I know is he’s set for life and loved ones are as well. (Answered by DFF’s ADP Grunt @DFF_Brunkie21
Utter-Fantasy #9) How do you think the NFL justifies paying Commissioner Roger Goodell “twice as much” as the highest paid player in the league?
DFF Response) I think the NFL justifies Roger Goodell salary with a few factors. First, according to the CBA, his job as commissioner covers a large range of responsibilities, resulting in a great amount of power being bestowed upon him. In decisions that lack precedence, he is the one to set the precedent for a multibillion dollar industry, which, I imagine, can be quite difficult on many different levels. Second, outside of players that transcend their local media markets, Goodell is a public figure who is probably the most widely recognized person associated with the NFL, which often makes him the first person to receive blame in situations where something goes wrong. Finally, he is tasked with tough decisions that will almost always result in some people disagreeing with him, especially in areas involving disciplinary action. Ultimately, it is a stressful job that requires tough decisions be made, often in a timely manner, in high pressure situations. (Answered by “the treasurer” DFF’s @2A4T3T Graham)
Utter-Fantasy #10) Despite Seattle drafting 3 rookie running backs, I still think that if he’s 100% in the pre-season, that fantasy football owners can draft RB Thomas Rawls confidently for the 2016 season. What are your thoughts now RB Rawls?
DFF Response) In terms of what I saw in 2015, albeit a small sample size, I fully believe that Rawls will have the opportunity to prove that he can carry the load for Seattle. There have been several positive comments coming from HC Carroll regarding Rawls which only helps to strengthen my belief. It obviously comes down to whether Rawls can take his opportunity. As a runner he proved extremely dynamic and effective when given the chance last year, and it is my belief that he will continue to do so in ’16. Whilst his UDFA status seems to be the main reason for doubt, I believe him to be an exception to many norms and don’t see Seattle factoring this in. 2016 draft pick RB Prosise looks a talented player, although his initial role will predominantly be as a pass catcher, and I see it as unlikely he will progress beyond this in the short term. Due particularly with the importance of pass protection and the difficulty that rookies tend to have picking this up. I would say that Prosise has a chance long term to prove himself as more than a pass catcher, so would see him as a more valuable dynasty asset than a season long, and would feel very confident in Thomas Rawls in 2016, if he shows up to preseason 100% healthy. (Answered by DFF’s Trade Machine, Rawls truther @dckeyte)
Next week Utter-Fantasy will have 10 new questions for the Dynasty Football Factory