So, I've always wanted to write my own fantasy football advice column, but I don't really have the time to do it consistently, so bear with me as I give it a shot here guys.
For most of you veteran fantasy football players, this is probably old news, but for the newbies out there, here's some advice. Don't over react. Now, it's fair to say that when a player produces, and looks great while doing so, he should be bumped up in your rankings. And the same applies to a player who does poorly and looks bad doing it. However, for most cases, don't put too much faith in the first few games of a season, or the panicked advice of so called fantasy experts. These guys don't get paid based on how well your fantasy team does, they get paid for bringing traffic to the site, and to make headlines. For example, this week Scott Pianowski wrote about trading Moss for Moss, Randy for Santana. Obviously, this brings more readers in than an article about how he stayed put, and will refrain from making any moves this week. Now, I'm fairly sure Randy Moss is not regarded as the #1 fantasy receiver anymore, nor should he be. He lost Brady in the first week of the season, and has not produced respectable numbers since. However, keep in mind, it's only been 2 weeks since Brady went out, he's working with a new, inexperienced QB, and the WR position is in general filled with ups and downs. Trading him for Santana Moss, (who is a classic case of an over reaction in a positive direction by the way) is selling low, and buying high, inadvisable in both the stock market, and fantasy football. For those of you looking for WR help cheap, inquire about Randy Moss, perhaps he's willing to deal the former #1 WR for the flavor of the week. If so, you just got yourself a WR with a tremendous amount of upside for a bag of chips. Randy Moss is only one example of this herd mentality in fantasy football. If you are aware of the pattern, you can take advantage of it. There's a good reason you ranked players where they were before the season, don't forget them because of a few bad games. Drew Brees owners from last year know how much it hurts to watch the guy you drafted tear it up for the rest of the season after you over react and trade him after a few bad weeks. To help you take advantage of the ups and downs of the football season, here are my over and under valued players for week 4.
QB 1. Aaron Rodgers - Over valued. Had two terrific games against...Minnesota and Detroit. 2 of the weaker defenses in the league against the pass. Had a sub par game against Dallas that was saved by a rushing TD. Don't count on many more of those during the season. Sell high while he's considered a lock top 8 QB, perhaps even top 5.
2. Peyton Manning - Under Valued. Wow, what short memories we have. Peyton Manning has not had a very good start to the season, with only 3 TDs and 4 INTs. Now, with his bye coming up, frustrated Manning owners may be willing to take 90 cents on the dollar for him. If you can get him cheap, do it. Or have we forgotten how quickly a stud QB can turn it around after a rough start? (hello Drew Brees)
RB 1.Reggie Bush- Over valued. Bush has always been a premier talent, and so in the wake of his great production thus far, has quickly risen in value. I don't have a problem with that, however, keep in mind, he doesn't get goal line carries, and has played Denver, Washington and Tampa Bay. Denver is terrible against the run, Washington isn't great either, and Tampa Bay's defense is not as fearsome as it once was. Matt Forte just lit up the Tampa Bay defense for over 150 total yards and a TD. Trade Bush to someone who's blinded by his talent, and thinks that Bush will keep up his torrid point production.
2.Steven Jackson - Undervalued. No, Steven Jackson is not a top 4 RB anymore, or even top 5 or 6. He still is however, a top 5 talent, and has actually averaged over 90 yards from scrimmage to begin this season. True, the Rams offense is terrible, but Jackson still manages to get his yardage, and the TDs will come eventually, as they vary greatly from week to week. Pounce on a Jackson owner's over reaction to his "terrible" start.
WR 1. T.J. Houshmanzadeh - Overvalued. It feels weird to put him here, because he was in the opposite category the last 2 weeks, but after one big week, almost everyone that was convinced TJ was done remembered what an explosive offense Cincy once was. Emphasis on the once. This is by no means the Cincy offense of a few years ago. Sure, TJ will still have some big games, but his days of being one of the most consistent producers in fantasy football are over. The Bengals offensive line is shoddy, and their offense has been condensed into a 20 yard box because the O-line can't hold their blocks long enough for the WRs to go downfield. Sell high, touting his big game against a good defense, and his matchup against a week Cleveland defense this week.
2. Braylon Edwards - Undervalued. The Browns offense has looked terrible, it's true. Braylon has dropped balls he usually catches, also true. However, Braylon Edwards is one of the most talented WRs in the league, with break away speed, a flare for the acrobatic, is one of the best WRs in the league on jump balls, a great red zone target, and has better hands than he has shown the last few weeks. Trade for him now before his game against the Cincinatti defense. If you don't, you won't have the oppurtunity to get him this cheap again.
Well, for those of you who have made it all the way through, thanks for reading. Please leave some feedback, whether you agree, disagree, don't like the players I chose, or have an opinion about the article in general.
Nice post, agree with most, but I have to give Bush his props for his performance against Tampa Bay...Typically they shut him down twice a year since he's been in the league, but in your in a PPR league I think you would be happy to have this guy, I just dream about how my team would be performing had I taken him in the 2nd rd over Braylon to pair with Marion Barber
I agree 100% on Braylon, you don't score 16 TD's on accident, classic example of a guy who missed pre-season and isn't into his groove yet, his total season numbers won't be as impressive as last year but I think he's pretty close to going back to scoring a few TD's a game...If Quinn takes over Braylon will be his favorite red zone target, and Quinn actually did a great job getting the ball to his red zone weapons in college so I think Braylon is the perfect buy low with a great matchup this week...I like him alot more then Ocho Cinco who is playing with an injury along with a bad offense and has to share TD's with TJ.
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Thanks, I do give props to Reggie for his performance thus far, in fact, I own him in my money league so I appreciate his contributions. However, I think he's an example of a good player who, due to hype, has actually become overvalued. Another example might be Thomas Jones after the Brett Favre trade. Went from being an undervalued guy, to a guy that was getting alot of hype because of all the media attention on the improvement Favre would bring to the Jets offense. I feel that good players are often a victim of their own talent (not from their perspective, but from a fantasy perspective) They are so talented that anything they do becomes scrutinized and hyped until you think they are the greatest thing since sliced bread.
Funny, since Sunday, I've traded away Reggie Bush and traded for Peyton Manning/Braylon Edwards (all in 3 separate trades). Pretty happy with current roster (will now post in an attempt to gloat) 10 Team Non-Keeper League Standard Yahoo! Scoring (Non-PPR)
QB- Peyton Manning WR- Brandon Marshall WR- Terrell Owens WR- Braylon Edwards RB- Frank Gore RB- Marshawn Lynch TE- Kellen Winslow K- Matt Prater DEF/ST- Philadelphia BN- Ronnie Brown BN- Pierre Thomas BN- Jason Campbell BN- Antonio Bryant BN- Chris Perry BN- Anthony Gonzalez
I do disagree about Reggie, though. With injuries to Colston, Patten, Shockey, Stecker, and Deuce, he is the only weapon left in the offense. He's going to be a solid RB1 all year in non-PPR leagues, and will be a stud in PPR leagues. The work he did in the offseason to improve has paid off. Last year, he had some problems with drops, wrong routes, etc, but I haven't noticed him making those mistakes this year. With Colston missing time, Reggie will be the leading receiver (in yards and catches) this year on an offense that will put up over 4000 yards.
FYI, I am a Saints fan, so you can either write this off as homer talk or realize that I've watched every Saints game intently.
Nice writing Maize I like it. I agree with just about everything you said, and most of the over valued and under valued players. However, for Braylon to pick it up hes gotta catch the balls that are thrown to him. Top WRs dont drop balls. That and his team sux. The D sucks, the O line SUCKS. They cant run, they cant pass. IDK they just look terrible. But thats not what this is about. I just wanted to write back and let you know that i liked the article. Good job!!
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LatSprewell, most of what you said is true, however, the #1 target on a team that will be down quite often, and therefore will be throwing the ball quite often is definitely someone to take a look at. When that player also happens to be a superior athlete (even by NFl standards) and a highly rated player at the beginning of the season, you can see why I'm not as down on him as others are. Also, perhaps an exception to a rule, but Terrell Owens is a top receiver who only a season or two ago was among the league leaders in drops. Obviously, you'd like him to catch those balls, but a case of the cement hands does not necessarily spell doom for Braylon's fantasy value.
This is a tricky subject because newbies will overreact, whereas people that think they're one-upping the newbies will underreact and end up out-thinking themselves.
The real expert move here lies somewhere in the middle. Just because a guy gets off to a slow start doesn't mean he's going to bust. Likewise, just because a guy has a big name doesn't mean he's going to break out of that slow start.
Ditto on the opposite. A guy getting off to a fast start doesn't mean he's going to continue it. Likewise, just because a guy comes out of nowhere doesn't mean he's a one-week or two-week wonder.
These type of things need to be looked at on a case by case basis. We need to determine WHY someone is over or under performing, and if that is fixable. Sometimes there's no rhyme or reason to it, it just happens. Last year Frank Gore was the same guy as the year before, on a team that looked pretty much the same as the year before. Many people saw him as a buy after a couple weeks and got him at a slightly discounted rate, but still ended up vastly overpaying because he didn't really get any better. The complete opposite is true of LT, who was a steal even at a mild discount after his awful start.
In the end though, holding onto someone too long simply because of their name or their history is as big of a boon as ditching someone because of two bad weeks. The trick is finding that proper middle ground.
Don't forget, every bust was once a "great buy low candidate".
Free Bagel, absolutely, it's a case by case basis every year. However, I would say that Frank Gore last year, while he did underperform, if you really got him for what you considered a steal at the time, you probably got pretty close to fair value for his actual numbers. While he did under perform, his final numbers weren't terrible, and probably enough to be a high end RB2 to low end RB1 depending on the size of the league. Obviously not what you were looking for, but overall, buying low hasn't come back to bite me in the butt yet. Obviously, you can't buy low on every big name having a bad start, nor can you assume every no name is a one week wonder, however, I would argue that there are many more big name players that bounce back than busts. And likewise, many more one week wonders than no names that break out into studs. I feel that the percentages are in your favor when playing like this, and hell, it's impossible to have a theory that actually guarantees you victory every season, only ones that can put the odds in your favor. I do agree with finding a happy medium between over and under reacting though.