Monthly Archives: August 2013

Preseason 2013 Week #4: Final Cuts – Notes and Nuggets

Preseason Week 4:

Things to look for tonight

• Injuries!!! Its way easier to pick up an undrafted back up now than when the season starts this is essential
o Pay attention to any backups that go down. That 3rd stringer could     become fantasy relevant

• A good majority of the players that get extended playing time tonight usually fall into one of two categories. This is far from absolute, but it can give you an idea

o Coming back from injury and need a week to get some work
o Fighting for a roster spot

• Pay attention to position battles. This game could very well decide the back 5 to 10 roster spots on the final 53.
• Special teams play is essential for most non-starters to make the team. Many great players have cut their teeth here.
• The teams loaded with talent, Seattle, San Fran, Cincinnati, Green Bay, etc… will have several of their 75 to 53 cut players signed elsewhere. Monitor these; you never know when a backup will be a starter down the road.
• Expect a few low level trades for players. Some teams won’t want to wait for a players release and want to secure the player so they don’t hit the open market.
 o Chris Harper 2013 4th round pick of the Seahawks might fall into this category. He might not make the team, but still has shown good potential.
• Cuts like this are agonizing for teams. Wasting a resource (4th round pick) and having the possibility of him being a cut is a real bind. Some teams will cut the better player because of the resource allocation.
Additional notes
• Just because they make the final 53 man roster does not mean they will be on the roster past week 1.
o Veteran’s salaries are guaranteed when signed prior to week 1. Most teams will sign vets after this to avoid guaranteeing the salary. Doing this means one of the players on the back end of the final 53 will get cut.
•Pay attention to who gets signed to the practice squad. Many successful NFL players have spent time here.

 

-Ron

Advertisements

2013 Preseason Week 3: Vikings at 49ers

49ers

  • Colin Kaepernick looked ready to go in this one.  Sure he has less than a season’s worth of starts under his belt, but from what I saw in this game, he looks ready for another successful season.  The only thing I can see holding him back is a lack of weapons on the outside
  • Rookie WR Quinton Patton saw his first playing time of the year and looked like he will be a contributor early this season.  With the lack of weapons in the 49ers passing game, he could be a great late round pick or waiver wire gem. High dynasty and keeper value
  • Though I have a few reservations about the 49ers’ secondary, they look to be an elite defensive unit again this year. Justin Smith, the key to the defense, looked like a honey badger.   He did what he wanted to opposing linemen.   They have one of the best front 7’s in the league.
  • I am not sure why Kendall Hunter is slipping in most drafts.  He is clearly the second best back on this team.   He has great vision and acceleration.  He can be had late in most drafts or as a waiver wire pick up.
  • Former 1st round pick Jonathan Baldwin caught 2 passes for 23 yards.   Maybe he catches on here.  I don’t believe he can contribute much on special teams, so he will have to win a WR job outright.  Little fantasy impact here.

Vikings

  • Christian Ponder hasn’t had the best preseason. That isn’t hard to tell.  However, without all-world RB Adrian Peterson in the backfield, it’s hard to get a read on the offense as a whole because he changes defensive schemes that much.
  • Rookie Cordarrelle Patterson looks like he will be pretty involved in the offense this year.  I would expect his role to grow as the season progresses.   Late round / waiver wire flyer on this guy for now.  Huge upside in dynasty and keeper leagues.
  • Matt Cassel didn’t look very sharp in relief of Ponder.   I’m not sure if there is much of a difference between the two Qb’s aside from Ponders upside.
  • Toby Gerhart does not excite me as a backup to A.P.  He has been productive in the past, but please don’t draft his handcuff too high.   His only value is as a handcuff to A.P.and nothing more.

-Ron

2013 Preseason Week 3: Saints at Texans

Saints

  • Pierre Thomas looked solid in this game.  He started the game and had a long catch and run on a check down.  He may be the defacto starter in this RBBC
  • Nick Toon looks the part at WR.  I am not sure he will be a huge part of the offense, but he will make the roster
  • WR Kenny Stills looks like a 5th round steal.  He beat Jonathan Joseph to the post on a with a great corner move for a TD and made a great catch on a long pass in the second quarter.  He is a player and can be had late in most redraft leagues
  • RB Mark Ingram looks noticeably slimmer and faster.  He will never be a shifty back, but he does look quicker than in the past.  If he gets goal line carries, he could be a factor as a RB3.
  • Lance Moore is always under rated. He always produces and gets more TD chances than most WR’s his size.

Texans

  • Matt Schaub had a good game, but the man is a statue in the pocket.  No mobility whatsoever.
  • Andre Johnson looked healthy.  I think the speculation of his decline might wait another year.  I’m not saying he will put up the number he did last year, but he will not fall off the map.
  • Ben Tate will be able to carry the load if Foster gets hurt.   He looked decisive and quick.  He also took the ugly 3 to 4 yards given to him instead of dancing around.  Showed  patience.
  • Kicker Bullock has a big leg.  Nailed a 55 yarder.
  • DeAndre Hopkins did not play as he recovers from his concussion.

Ron

Preseason Notes

Random Sleeper Notes

  • San Diego TE- Ladarius Green will have a sizable role in the offense.  I like him as a player and his situation.   There are not a lot of weapons on that team
  • Denver TE – Julius Thomas has some potential, but I like him less because of his situation.  There are a lot of mouths to feed in that Denver offense.  Definitely a player to watch.
  • Seattle WR – Stephen Williams.  He is one to monitor on the waiver wire.  Pete Carroll has never been shy on giving guys a chance.  He could be the deep threat Seattle has been looking for.  I would monitor him in deep redraft leagues and dynasty leagues.
  • Assuming Gabbert Plays well, I think the Jaguars offense will be better than most think in 2013.  Keep an eye to the waiver wire for MJD’s backup.  Either Jordan Toddman or Justin Forsett.   At this point in his career you can’t assume health with MJD
  • Kenjon Barner RB Carolina is a rookie out of Oregon, maybe worth a dynasty stash.  Williams, Stewart as well as the coaching staff could be on the outs in Carolina if they play poorly this year.

Random Team Notes

  • Don’t get too crazed watching the Minnesota offense.   Without AP in the backfield in the preseason defenses aren’t paying attention to the run at all.    They won’t be world beaters, but they won’t be as bad as they have looked thus far.
  • Carolina first string offense hasn’t played very well this preseason.   This concerns me more than some of the other offenses that are struggling.

-Ron

2013 Preseason Week 3: Sehawks at Packers

Seahawks at Packers

Seahawks

  • Robert Turbin looked much better this week than last.   Looked like he shook the rust off.  10 carries for 50 yards.  He is in a battle with Christine Michael for the #2 role behind Lynch.  Turbin also has underrated hands 4 catches for 22 yards.
  • Christine Michael showed why he was a second round pick.  He ran for 97 yards on just 11 carries and had a 43 yard TD run.  He was close to breaking a few more.  He is the biggest breakaway running threat on this team.  He has excellent balance and vision.  He is firmly locked in a battle with Turbin for the #2 job in the Seattle backfield.
  • Stephen Williams continues to impress with 2 catches for 58 and another touchdown.   The Cardinals cast off is going to make this roster and push for playing time.  He is looking like a deep threat that also has some YAC ability.    Monitor this guy closely.  He could be a waiver wire gem
  • The Seattle D looked strong in this game.    The injuries/ suspensions to the pass rushers is concerning in the short term, but overall they are a top 5 fantasy defense.

Packers

  • Eddie Lacy did not look as good in this game as he did in the last, but don’t let this scare you off of him.  He will be a top 5 rookie producer this year.  He is probably the #1 pick in most dynasty formats.
  • Jermichael Finley Dropsies continue, but he looks to remain a focal point of the offense.   The drops are concerning, but I think you can get him at a relatively low draft position and get near TE1 productivity.
  • Jonathan Franklin does not look like he is ready for prime time yet.  I think he will need a year of seasoning before he is ready to contribute.
  • The corpse of Vince Young has been reanimated and he looked good.  I have a strong feeling he will be the backup in QB.
  • The Green Bay pass rush did look formidable, but I think they are being overrated in most formats.  A solid D but I do not think they are an elite fantasy unit as of now.

-Ron

2013 Preseason Week 3: Cincinnati at Dallas

CINCINNATI

So here’s something you don’t see everyday.  WR Brandon Tate had a 75 yard TD in this one on a punt return.  But that wasn’t the “real” story here.  The real story is that it came about on the 2nd attempt of the punt, b/c the 1st punt attempt by the Cowboys hit the bottom of their giant scoreboard/video screen (!!) and had to be blown dead (after review).  It’s too bad this didn’t happen in a real game, namely: that the house that Jerry built blew up in his face.

DALLAS

I hate talking about the Cowboys’ running game.  To me they are all a bunch of the same medium talent level dudes.  RB Demarco Murray – looked bad early on with a fumble, got benched came back ran hard, finished with 12 carries for 51 yards against the Bengals 2nd string defense.

But, the running game was pretty much opened up by the passing game (we’ll get to that) and Murray is not markedly all that much better than the guys behind him.   Add to that his fumbles and injury history and his current ADP in 12 team leagues of rd 3 or 4 looks like a compulsory pick with the theory that he’s not currently in an official timeshare.   To me a guy like RB Philip Tanner is  perfectly capable of replicating most of the things Murray does (although not the speed) – but he’s not worth drafting in fantasy unless an injury happens before week 1 – or if you’re in a particularly large league.  All of the Dallas RB’s – even Murray are “just a guy” – you draft Murray reluctantly because he has the lead job that could get you the carries – but you can’t be overly excited about it.

You have to be excited about the Cowboys passing attack however.  Everyone knows about the potential for WR Dez Bryant.  So what I can’t figure out is why QB Tony Romo’s ADP started so low…it’s starting to climb now into the high 6th round, but that may even be value there depending on your league rules.   This is a case where Romo’s real life struggles with crazy style turnovers and late season failures has sort of overshadowed his elite-ish fantasy output.

If you like Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson, and Matt Stafford why not like Tony Romo?  Romo will be in a similar high production offense, with high attempts – has a similar below average OL working in front of him (with the exception of Russel Wilson in Seattle), and is surrounded by talented skill players.  I can make a good case that Tony Romo should go off the board even in the company of Cam Newton or Rg3 – Romo really does belong in the QB 5-7 conversation for 2013, and I don’t see it happening.  So before his ADP rises anymore based off his good preseason – it’s time to start planning on Romo as your “backup” plan at the QB spot.  If you miss a Cam or a Stafford – don’t worry pick another position there and target Romo in the 5th or 6th rounds.  He’ll be worth it – and best yet you’ll get to pair him with someone you took in the 2nd or 3rd rounds (instead of a QB) to help you out.

By extension this line of thinking also brings us to WR Miles Austin (4 catches for 59 and a TD in this one).  But “he’s made of glass” you scream.  “I know” I say – “and not even good glass – like the original I-Phone screen glass” you continue…“it’s a risk I admit” I reply….but here’s what I’m looking at….

4 of the last 5 seasons Austin has finished with 900 yards and 6 TD’s as his minimum.  In other season of those 5, he wasn’t on the field enough to get 900, but he had already 7 TD’s at that point to go with about 500 yards.

And did you know in 3 of the last 5 seasons Miles actually played all 16 games?  Now I’ll admit some of those games to get to 16 he was banged up badly enough that it clearly affected his play.  Still perception on this guy isn’t always reality – as I watched him cover up his body, slide early at times, and drop a pass because he was worried about taking a shot – where most people probably thought ‘this brittle dude could get knocked out at any time”… I was thinking “well at least he’s trying to take care of himself.”

Miles Austin’s current ADP in a 12 team league is late 7th early 8th round.  He’s coming off the board after guys like WR Stevie Johnson and WR Antonio Brown.

Fun Fact: In 2012, Miles Austin outscored WR Antonio Brown in most non-Ppr and PPR formats.   Does that sound right to you?  Does it match your perception of this guy?

If you get Miles Austin as your fantasy football Wr #3 you’re ahead of the game, even if he misses a few games here and there…and if he plays more than normal you’ll be getting a high end WR 2 in the 8th round of fantasy draft!!

Fight your 1st thought, and look deeper on guys in fantasy football.

:by Mike

Podcast #4 2013: Injury and Rookies

We review major injuries and the rookies facing fantasy owners this year.