Today, we take a look at the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins

Completed Previews: AFC NorthNFC North – NFC East Part INFC East Part II

2019 projections referenced below are based on 2019 projections managed and updated by our very own @RudyGamble . ADP, and strength of schedule data referenced below are based on consensus data.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

  • QB Josh Allen
    • 2018 Recap
      • QB21
      • Missed 4 games due to injury (elbow)
      • Beat projections 7 out of 12 games played
      • 18 Total TDs (10 passing) and 14 turnovers (12 INT)
      • 631 rushing yards (QB2) on 89 attempts (QB4)
      • 320 pass attempts (QB30) 
      • 17.3 fantasy points per game
    • 2019 Outlook
      • Strength of Schedule at-a-glance
        • Welcoming start to the season (weeks 1-4), faces the #7 (NYJ) and #1 (CIN) ranked easiest fantasy defenses for QBs in week 1 & 3. One defense ranked in the top 10 toughest, #9 (NYG) in week 3 
        • 15th easiest overall strength of schedule for QBs
        • Rough finish to the fantasy season (weeks 12-16), faces 3 fantasy defenses ranked in the top 10 toughest for QBs and no matchup against a defense in the top 10 easiest. 
    • After returning from his elbow injury, week 12-17, Josh beat his weekly projections every game except one. Those last 6 games, Josh averaged a monster 24.2 fantasy points per game which put him at the top of the position over that span.  The big question will be if Josh can carry his stats from the last 6 games of 2018 in to 2019. The Bills front office sure did their part improving the skill players to support Allen in his sophomore campaign. The additions of speedster John Brown and slot veteran Cole Beasley will help. Also, bolstering the backfield with the additions of future hall of fame RB Frank Gore, adding versatile 3rd down back T.J. Yeldon from Jacksonville, and drafting rookie RB Devin Singletary. His rushing stats alone give Allen a solid floor and with his new weapons Josh might be more than just a sexy late round grab in Best Ball leagues. Definitely worth the roster spot in 2-QB or superflex leagues but in traditional redraft Allen is a nice backup to grab if you rosters 2 QBs. 
  • RB LeSean McCoy
    • 2018 Recap
      • RB39
      • Missed 4* games due to injury (*started 2 games but left after recording only 2 carries in each game)
      • Beat weekly projections 5 out of 12 full games
      • 1 game over 100yds rushing
      • 3.2 yards per carry and 7.0 yards per reception
      • 2.8 receptions per game on 3.8 targets per game
      • 9.1 fantasy point per game
    • 2019 Outlook
      • Strength of Schedule at-a-glance
        • Attractive start to the season (weeks 1-4), facing the #8 (@NYG wk 2) and #2 (vs CIN wk 3) easiest fantasy defenses for RBs and no defense ranked in the top 10 hardest. 
        • 15th easiest overall strength of schedule for RBs
        • Unfavorable finish to the fantasy season (weeks 13-16), no defense ranked in the top 10 easiest and 3 matchups against defenses ranked in the top 10 toughest (wk13 @ DAL #6, wk14 vs BAL #2, wk15 @ PIT #9)
      • Things are not looking good for the 11 year veteran this season for fantasy purposes. The Buffalo Bills brought in a plethora of backs to offload McCoys workload. Frank Gore, TJ Yeldon, and rookie Devin Singletary will all cut in to Shadys production making him unreliable for anyones starting lineup. Not to mention, his QB loves to take off and run with the ball. I’m avoiding McCoy in all of my drafts this year even though Rudy has him projected to finish the season as RB30, which is in the RB3/flex range. There might be a game or two that he produces a worthy fantasy stat line but with a crowded backfield it will be unreliable. 
  • WR John Brown
    • 2018 Recap
      • WR45
      • Played all 16 games
      • Beat projections 6 out of 16 games
      • 2 games over 100 yards receiving
      • 6.1 targets per game (97 tot tgts)
      • 2.6 receptions per game (42 tot rec)
      • 17 yards per rec and .3 TDs per game
      • 9.0 fantasy points per game
    • 2019 Outlook
      • 8th easiest overall strength of schedule for WRs
      • Tough matchups to finish the fantasy season (weeks 13-16),  no matchup against a defense ranked in the top 10 easiest and faces the #6 (DAL wk13) and #1 (BAL wk14) ranked toughest fantasy defenses for opposing WRs. 
    • John was putting together a respectable start to the 2018 season averaging 11.5 fantasy points per game through weeks 7 with Joe Flacco under center until Lamar Jackson took over. Browns stats plummeted to fantasy irrelevancy after Jackson took over. Lamar and the Ravens became a run heavy offense with low passing numbers to support any reliable wideout from a fantasy perspective. In 2019, Brown is hoping to revive his career in Buffalo with Josh Allen and the Bills. Do you remember pre-draft videos of Josh Allen throwing 70+ yard bombs down field? Allen now has a target with the jets fast enough to burn the defense and get under one of these long bombs, queue John Brown. Rudy has Brown finishing as WR 40 right behind Sterling Shepard and couple of spots ahead of DJ Moore. I like Brown more in best ball leagues over redraft because his weekly production will be hard to rely on but he is worth a flier at his current price, ADP 191 and WR61. 
  • BUF Quick Hits: WR Cole Beasley finds himself in new surroundings after leaving the Dallas Cowboys. Mainly a desperation start and a resident on the waiver wire, it’ll be interesting to see if Cole can find himself relevant on fantasy rosters this season. Beasley’s current ADP of 246 overall and WR77 has him going undrafted in leagues drafting 20 rounds or less. Let him hit waivers and see if the Bills offense can turn things around in year 2 under Josh Allen.  If you are going to place a beat on anyone in this backfield rookie RB, Devin Singletary, might be the dart to throw. McCoy and Gore are on their last legs, literally, and it would be a miracle to see them both play all 16 games. TJ Yeldon will serve as the primary 3rd down/change of pace back capping any passing value that McCoy previously held. Stay clear of this backfield unless desperate. 

Miami Dolphins

  • RB Kenyan Drake
    • 2018 Recap
      • RB14
      • Played all 16 games
      • Beat weekly projections 8 out of 16 games
      • 0 games over 100yds rushing
      • 3.3 receptions per game on 4.6 targets per game
      • 4.5 yards per carry and 9.0 yards per reception
      • 12.9 fantasy points per game
    • 2019 Outlook
      • Strength of Schedule at-a-glance
        • Tough start (weeks 1-4), no matchup against a defense ranked in the top 10 easiest and faces the #2 and #6 toughest fantasy defense for RBs (wk1 vs BAL, wk3 @ DAL)
        • 6th easiest overall strength of schedule for running backs
        • Attractive finish to the fantasy season (weeks 13-16), no matchup against a defense ranked in the top 10 hardest and faces the #8 and #2 easiest fantasy defense for RBs (wk15 @ NYG, wk16 vs CIN)
      • Kenyan quietly had a top 15 RB finish in 2018, and Frank Gore siphoned 156 carries, 722 yards and 5 rushing touchdowns. Gore is now in Buffalo and Miami did not bring any real threats to Drakes lead duties. Look for Drake to remain a top 15 back. Rudy has him finishing as RB12 and he is going relatively cheap, ADP 54 and RB26, in the middle of the 4th round. 
  • MIA Quick Hits: With Gore out of town this paves the way for 2nd year back Kalen Ballage. Rudy has him finishing as RB36 on the season and if Drake were to go down Ballage is the clear handcuff to own. I like grabbing Kalen as bench depth at his current ADP of 173 and RB58. Ballage flashed his abilities in week 15 last year exploding for 123 yards, 1TD on 12 carries. New offensive coordinator, Chad O’Shea, joins new head coach Brian Flores from New England to lead the Miami Dolphins. NE has been notorious for deploying an RBBC which bodes well for Ballage owners. The quarterback situation is one to avoid with Ryan Fitzpatrick aka Fitzmagic and former 1st round pick Josh Rosen heading in to camp jockeying for the #1 spot. Both are not worth of rostering in your standard redraft leagues. Rosen projected QB29 and Fitzmagic QB40. Albert Wilson leads the wideout core in Rudys projections finishing at WR42, ahead of Desean Jackson and DJ Moore. Devante Parker is projected at WR58, followed by Kenny Stills at WR64. New coaches, along with new quarterbacks, provide a lot of unpredictability when looking at this offense and it is why I am avoiding any wideout in MIA this season.

Come back Wednesday for Part II where I preview the New England Patriots and New York Jets.

Good luck to everyone participating in the annual Scott Fish Bowl that kicked off today. 


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