If you’re not tuning in, you’re missing out
Fall has always been my favorite time of year for a variety of reasons:
The smell of defeat in Cleveland.
High school football.
I know a lot of Reds and Indians fans have probably turned off the playoffs since their postseason foes turned them off.
But what you’re missing is some of the best playoff baseball I’ve seen in a long time.
In both the remaining series, you can be witness to some of the finest pitching I’ve ever seen. It has truly been a treat to watch these pitchers battle game after game.
One of the reasons I love baseball, and most games for that matter, is the strategy involved. The baseball playoffs is when that really manifests itself.
Let’s talk about strategies for this week of fantasy football and slick moves you should consider making.
Nick Foles looks like he might be starting for a second straight week since Michael Vick looks like he’ll be out a second week. This week the Eagles face the Cowboys who are giving up the most fantasy points to quarterbacks in the league. If you’re a Vick owner or looking for a bye-week fill-in for someone like Drew Brees, Foles could be very good.
Speaking of Dallas, a trendy pickup this week will be Joseph Randle, who is taking first-team reps are the running back spot with DeMarco Murray out with a sprained MCL. Randle saw the first carries of his NFL career last week with 11 carries for 17 yards and two grabs for 15 yards. He found the end zone which saved him from just a terrible debut. The concern for me with him is that he did that against the Redskins that’s giving up on average the second-most fantasy points to running backs in the league.
I told you a few weeks ago when Brandon Jacobs was signed to look at him as a handcuff for David Wilson. With Wilson still nursing injuries and poor performances, Jacobs rushed for 106 yards and two scores against the Bears last week. I certainly like him more than McGahee or Wilson at this point.
I don’t however, like him better than Zac Stacy, who is still available in far too many leagues across the various fantasy platforms.
Stacy may not be tall but he’s stout. The Rams back is the undisputed starter and is getting more involved in the passing game. In the last two games, he’s had six carries inside the 20. He doesn’t have a ton of competition for the job and definitely needs to be owned.
One of the positions I tend to get gun shy about when it comes to drafting rookies is at wide receiver. The trend tends to be that rookies don’t take off right away. It’s usually the second or third season you really see a receiver begin to reach that potential.
Keenan Allen of the Chargers is bucking that trend. In the last three weeks, his production has gone up each week as well as the number of times that Phillip Rivers is looking his way. All total, it means he had 20 catches for 302 yards and two scores while being targeted 27 times. If he’s not owned in your league, he’s absolutely worth picking up over the likes of Hakeem Nicks, Dwayne Bowe and Cecil Shorts.
Shorts’ teammate, Justin Blackmon, has actually been even more productive than Allen in the last two weeks. Since returning from his four-game suspension, Blackmon has 19 catches for 326 yards and a touchdown among 29 targets.
One of the reasons he and Shorts are appealing receivers is because their team is terrible and the Jags are often behind and forced to throw. It’s one of the reasons Maurice Jones-Drew has been wretched this year. Blackmon absolutely needs to be owned and started weekly.
You need to own him like you need to watch the baseball playoffs. If you are a fan of sports and highlights and based on the popularity of 24-hour sports channels you are, then you need to be tuning in to the playoffs. These kind of performances are the stuff of legend.
Aaron Korte is the A-T’s fantasy football writer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow him on Twitter @KorteClarkKent.