Eight receivers caught at least 2 touchdowns on Sunday. You’ve heard of Mike Evans, Tyler Lockett, Jimmy Graham….Wait, what?! Jimmy Graham caught 2 touchdowns? Geez. And Tyler Kroft? 2020 man. Anyways, Tee Higgins was a highly touted rookie, but Cedrick Wilson (5 rec 107 yds 2 TD), Andy Isabella (4 rec 47 yds 2 TD), and Dontrelle Inman (3 rec 38 yds 2 TD)? What to make of those three and should they be a part of your team?

Andy Isabella is 23 years old, 5′ 9″, and 188 pounds. He played his college ball at UMass and was a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award. Pro Football Focus graded him as the highest-rated wide receiver in college football after Isabella caught 102 pass for 1,698 yards and 13 touchdowns his senior year. The college production was eye-popping, but the physical attributes (4.31 40-yard dash, 77th percentile speed score, and 65th percentile agility score according to PlayerProfiler) and performance at the Senior Bowl (7 rec for 73 yards TD) cemented his status as a NFL prospect. As a result, the Arizona Cardinals selected him with the 62nd overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. 

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I love any and all samples. The guy hawking his CD at the mall? Sure, why not. I’ll take a listen. The chocolate tray in front of See’s? Is that a rhetorical question? I rarely buy anything at that time, though. But when I go to Costco? They do such a wonderful job of presentation and location that I’ve actually purchased the goods from time to time. With so much carnage happening in Week Two of the NFL season, our eyes got a sample of many of the replacements, particularly at the tight end position. Below, I will go over four tight ends who moved up the depth chart due to injury. Take a look at the samples and see if purchasing is the right thing to do.

Blake Jarwin of the Dallas Cowboys tore his ACL in Week One. This one brought tears to my eyes, as he was one of my favorite late-round tight ends. The next man up was Dalton Schultz. All he did in Week Two was haul in 9 of 10 targets for 88 yards and a touchdown. Schultz is 24 years old, 6′ 5″, and 244 pounds. He was selected in the fourth round of the 2018 draft out of Stanford. Prior to this year, he had played a total of 27 games and started seven. He caught 13 passes on 18 targets for 122 yards. He runs a 4.76 40-yard dash and has an excellent 11.40 agility score according to Player Profiler, which puts him in the 74th percentile. The situation is a juicy one, as defenses have to contend with Ezekiel Elliot, Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and CeeDee Lamb, so he will be free to roam the belly of defenses. Last season, Dak targeted the tight end position a total of 126 times, with Jason Witten garnering 83 of those. In addition, with injuries to the Cowboys offensive line, shorter targets to Schultz could be more in the offering. The negative is that he’s lower on the totem pole for targets, so production could be volatile week-to-week. 

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I’m not a condiment guy when it comes to food. Mustard and relish on my dog? Disgusting. Mayonnaise on my burger? Naw. Let me just savor the meat with egg, mushrooms, grilled onions, lettuce, and tomatoes. I know. I’m a freaking weirdo. Tell me something my wife doesn’t say to me every day. I’m good with dipping my fries in ketchup and fish and chips in clam chowder, though, and hot sauce on my mexican delicacies. Is that cool? Anyways, when it comes to fantasy football, give me all the sauce, especially the hot stuff. I want flips crossing the goal line, hips gyrating in the end zone, and leaps into the stands. I want catches, yards, and first downs. Nyheim Hines provided plenty of sauce on Sunday, scoring two touchdowns on the day. Was this a one squirt occurrence or can we expect a steady flow all season?

Hines is 23 years old, 5′ 9″, and 196 pounds. He played his college ball at NC State and was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the fourth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. In his rookie season, he rushed 85 times for 314 yards with 2 touchdowns while catching 63 passes for 425 yards and 2 touchdowns on 63 targets. Last season, the numbers dropped to 52 rushes for 199 yards and 2 touchdowns with 44 receptions for 320 yards on 58 targets, as Jacoby Brissett was thrust into the starting quarterback role due to the retirement of Andrew Luck. 

Entering this season, Hines was slated for third down and two-minute drive duties. With Phillip Rivers signed to be the new quarterback, that role was going to be a prosperous one. Below are the number of targets that Rivers has given to the running back position over his career.

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With the stock market going nuts recently, I thought it appropriate to harken back to my trading days. Some traders utilize tape reading and technical analysis to study price action and figure out the momentum of a stock. Buy high and sell higher is usually the mantra. Or sell low and buy lower. On the flip side, there are value investors who scour 10-Qs, listen to conference calls, and dive into all the fundamentals of a company. Price-to-earning ratios and book value are numbers often utilized. When a stock continues to go up or down, momentum traders are more apt to keep riding the train until it stops. Value investors, on the other hand, look for spots to buy/sell when pessimism or optimism are too high. Fantasy football participants are no different. There are those place emphasis on the most recent results, while others look for bargains or spots to fade when sentiment gets out of whack. Will A. J. Green keep getting hammered by momentum traders or will he be money for value investors?

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Unless you purchased a certain car with a flux capacitor, that permeates time and space after accelerating to 88 mile per hour, off of Craigslist, reliving the past is not an option. But there are ways to recreate aspects of it. Press play on that special jam, and your past and present bodies, minds, and souls gyrate in unison. That old flame? You will never find the exact replica, but sometimes you can find someone eerily similar. When in a rut, often going back to the tried and true techniques brings clarity to a situation. That seems to be what Bill Belichick is doing in Patriots Land, as he drafted Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene in the 2020 NFL Draft, replicating the 2010 draft when he landed Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski. Can Asiasi and Keene be fantasy viable?

From a physical standpoint, there are tons of similarities.

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Undrafted. Slow. Not Agile. His PlayerProfiler page has him under the 50th percentile in 40-yard dash, speed, burst, agility, and catch radius. More specifically, he’s in the 7th percentile for burst and 13th for 40-yard time. Yuck. To compound things, he suffered a torn ACL in Week 9 of last year. So, why do I think Preston Williams of the Miami Dolphins is a value as the 54th wide receiver and 137th overall player off the board, according to NFFC ADP from 8/1 to 8/23?

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Living in the fantasy world is fun. It is a place where we can fly by swimming, have our cake and eat it, and score touchdowns without being a crash dummy. But it is not all good because sometimes we become so absorbed in that realm that we lose sight of what is right in front of us. Digging into the Minnesota Vikings wide receiver situation, I’ve uncovered such a situation. Justin Jefferson, the first round pick, is being drafted as the 134th overall player and 52nd wide receiver in NFFC drafts from 7/1 to 8/16. Olabisi Johnson, though, is the 169th wide receiver and 564th overall player being selected. Reality is definitely skewed. Here’s why.

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Size. Speed. Strength. That’s how I filter the attributes when I draft in Madden. Or at least when I used to play Madden. What an abomination of a video game franchise. Anyways, the Holy Trinity of S is how many NFL general managers draft as well. But physical attributes are not the end all be all. Look at the nine wide receivers who have run a 4.3 40-yard dash or faster at the NFL Combine:

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When I was a pubescent boy, deciphering the ebbs and flows of the squiggly lines from the scrambled cable channels provided much pleasure. I owe all my creative juices to that endeavor. After my voice cracked and hair appeared in places that never existed before….it was never one hair, then two hairs. One day it was nothing. The next day there was a forest. One of life’s great mysteries. Anyways, figuring out how to get onto all the bases was the next challenge. Then, it was about finding a woman that would actually say yes. Kids. White picket fence. Yadda yadda. Now, it’s about fantasy sports. Wet dreams and tents in the pants are fostered by thinking about men playing with a brown, prolate spehroid-shaped ball. Talk about devolution. It is what it is, though. With all that’s been going on in this Rona-infested world, my one solace has been from the sexual healing of Adam Thielen. Sorry wife and kids. Here’s why:

In 2018, the Vikings rushed 357 times and attempted 606 passes under John DeFilippo, good for 27th and 6th in the league respectively. Mike Zimmer, a defensive-minded coach wasn’t having any of that. As a result, he went with Kevin Stefanski as offensive coordinator the following year and mandated a more run-heavy approach. Mission accomplished, as the Vikings rushed 476 times and attempted only 466 passes, good for 4th and 30th. But Stefanski became the new head coach of the Cleveland Browns in the offseason and Gary Kubiak was promoted.

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