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The day you got report cards in school was always probably the worst day of the month for most people. Regardless of whether or not you did well, it was always stressful waiting for your judgment to be handed down to you in the form of a single letter. While I’m not going to give players a letter grade for their performance on the year so far, I think it’s about time to check in on what they’re doing for your fantasy team. A fourth of the season is finished and it’s time to start making moves if your team isn’t producing. This week, I’m taking nearly 20 of the year’s most intriguing players and letting you know how they should be viewed for the rest of the season. With some trade targets and waiver wire names to grab for “failing” players, let’s get to it in this week’s edition of Beyond the Numbers.

David Johnson – I just finished watching the Amazon Prime series All or Nothing, and it’s clear Arizona loves this sophomore running back. He’s the bell cow on a team with some of the best skill position players in the game, and they’ll eventually hit their stride. If you can steal him from another owner, I’d try to before he drops a 40 point game like last year. Le’veon is the only fantasy running back that can touch him this year.

Lamar Miller – While severely underutilized in Miami, he’s having no problem looking for work in his new Houston home. Looks like a solid enough return on where you probably drafted him, but his lack of touchdowns is slightly concerning. Brock Osweiler is much shakier than Houston thought, and Miller who was just searching for carries will now be begging to get goal line carries. I would love to have this guy on my team, but if you can snag David Johnson, or parlay him for Lacy and solid wide receiver, I think you should consider your options.

Eddie Lacy – He’s the number one guy I would be gunning for in a trade. His value isn’t too high, he hasn’t had any monster games, and he hasn’t scored a touchdown. Plus I kind of have a thing for fatties. It’s only a matter of time before he gets force-fed the ball (although I doubt they’d have to force-feed him anything) and turns back into that stud from 2014.

Tom Brady & Rob Gronkowski – This one is simple, Gronk and Brady will both be making their first appearances of the year Sunday. In your fantasy point total that is. Don’t get smart, Gronk needs to be in every lineup.

Jeremy Langford – His days as a fantasy option are done, if they’ve ever even started. In every league I’m in, he’s been tossed away to waivers, and I couldn’t blame you if you do the same.

Jordan Matthews – I never saw Philly doing this well, and by correlation, Jordan Matthews. But here he is, right in the sweet spot of WR1/WR2 on a team that’s clicking. He had a really quiet week 3, but his nearly double the targets of the next man up gives him a palatable floor. Great job drafting him, but now do something more difficult…trust him after his disappointing 2015.

Melvin Gordon – One word, sell. Sell immediately before it’s too late. I don’t use a ton of numbers because anyone can mold them into their agenda, but this is a case where numbers actually tell the whole story; he’s averaging a mere 3.15 yards per carry on the year. He’s not good, and he’s as touchdown dependant as they come. Sell.

Latavius Murray – Quite a disappointment this year, Murray will be sidelined with injury this week. DeAndre Washington hasn’t gotten much work yet this year, but he’ll be starting this weekend for the injured Murray. This is a situation where I think Washington has a shot to gain the “main guy in a committee” role even when the underwhelming Murray returns. I doubt he’ll be the savior on your team, but if you’re desperate for a running back stash at a position pillaged by injury, he’s your guy.

Gary Barnidge – The only time you should have “Barnkowski” (laughs) in your lineup is if Josh Mccown is the starting quarterback. Go grab Dennis Pitta, Hunter Henry, Cameron Brate… I can go on. Just like the Kylie Jenner lip challenge last year, Barnidge is a fad better left in 2015.

DeAngelo Williams – I hate to say this about a guy who looks like he has a lot of gas in the tank, but he’s droppable at this point. You drafted him in the 10th round simply as an RB1 rental for 3 weeks, and he did his job; heck, he’s probably a big reason why some of you won weeks 1 and 2. Now, it’s time to face reality since Le’veon Bell is the man again, and drop him for one of the many enticing pick ups on the waiver wire.

Zach Miller – The Bears tight end started off slowly the first two weeks of the season with Jay Cutler under center, but has thrived with Brian Hoyer at the helm. Kevin White is done for what seems to be the entire year, and that puts Miller in the weekly TE1 conversation. He’s shown his red zone prowess and now will be getting more targets from whomever John Fox rolls with at quarterback.

Sterling Shepard & Will Fuller – It looks like I backed the wrong rookie horse in Tajae Sharp a few weeks ago, as he’s taken major steps back in an offense reliant on Demarco Murray. Shepard has been a go to in New York as defenses are keying in on Odell Beckham and his puny mental state, and Will Fuller has led the Texans in all categories a receiver can. Both are actually somehow leading all their respective skill positions (yes, including running backs) in points and on pace for over 100 targets. They’re shaping up to be consistent high range WR3s.

Justin Forsett – He’s gone and there’s only one person left to pick up the carries, Terrance West. West was available in a handful of leagues I’m in, so I immediately scooped him up as should you. I’m comfortable plugging him into my RB2 slot or flex for as long as he holds off Kenneth Dixon, but don’t count on him keeping the job for long, he is after all Terrance West.

Jay Ajayi – He’s almost as angry and big headed as Odell Beckham, but with nowhere close the talent. Hence why Adam Gase had no problem benching him week 1 for childish behavior after Arian Foster was awarded the starting gig. Although he’s still young and immature, Gase admitted the back by committee isn’t working out and wants to get one back going a game (Ajayi). He’s worthy of a pick up and stash if you’re thin at running back, and once he gets the call, I think he’ll actually prove himself capable.

Theo Riddick – Just like when you were the last pick in gym class and a team had to pick you up by default, Riddick is simply the last man standing in Detroit. He’s looked pretty one dimensional running the ball and hasn’t impressed anyone. Once someone, anyone, becomes healthy enough to take over the starting role, he’ll revert back to being a third down specialist. Very disappointing from someone the coaches were hoping could assume a much larger role.

Charles Sims – I think Sims is secretly Riddick in disguise. Different team, same story.

 

Thanks for tuning in again this week, and as always hit me up with any comments. I’m leaning toward keeping this format of touching on many players’ values instead of just a few in depth each week, so let me know what you think.

  1. Jurickson BROfar says:
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    I agree with everything you said. Just made two trade. Honest opinion.

    I gave M Gordon and Jordy for OBJ.

    I gave Marvin Jones and L Murray for L Miller and Hyde.

    • Eric says:
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      @Jurickson BROfar: Gordon and Jordy is too much for OBJ, in my opinion. Like the other trade a lot though.

      • Dominic Hall

        Dominic Hall says:
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        @Eric: If this was actually the trade, I would have to agree with Eric 100%.

  2. Jurickson BROfar says:
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    sorry. I had it reversed. Murry and Jordy for OBJ. Gordon and Marvin Jones for Miller and hyde.

    • Chicken Dinner says:
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      @Jurickson BROfar: Now the first one is OK and the other, not so much.

    • Dominic Hall

      Dominic Hall says:
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      @Jurickson BROfar: First trade is fine, much better days are coming for ODB and I’m still a tad worried about Jordy’s age as we go further in the season. Have to say though, if Jordy stays healthy I can honestly see him ending the season higher in point total.

      Second trade I think is a nice, taking advantage of both players hot starts. Both Gordon and Jones will be severely over-valued, so great job getting two legit players.

  3. Johnsnow says:
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    What say you on a block buster?

    Matt forte, Isaiah Crowell, devante Parker, Robert woods

    For

    Amari cooper, Thomas Rawls, Terrance west, tevin Coleman…

    I own Dixon, Michael and freeman. Do you think I own the starters or no? I figured if I bring in west coleman and Rawls I’ll always own the starter on 3 teams.

    I also have bilal Powell and Dwayne Washington as a 4th and 5th rb.

    • Dominic Hall

      Dominic Hall says:
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      @Johnsnow: It sounds like an ok idea in theory, but I don’t think it’ll work out the way you hope if you make the trade. I’d rather have the best talents on my team and take my chances with injury, than just have starters and handcuffs. Plus, you have think of how boned you’ll be on bye weeks. Stick with what you got.

  4. 10 team standard. I have Dwayne Washington as a 5th RB. DeAngelo Williams, Spencer Ware & Jay Ajayi were all dropped to waivers this week. Should I cut Wasington for one of those? I have Le’Veon Bell, so I could hold DeAngelo as a handcuff, but why tie up the roster space this early. Spencer Ware has been most valuable, but fumblitis & Jamaal Charles working on returning. You think Ajayi worth holding onto over Ware? I could stand pat w/Washington from Washington, but he is hurt and the Lions are a train wreck. Thanks Dominic!

    • Dominic Hall

      Dominic Hall says:
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      @madden_curser: That’s a solid question. There’s a chance any of them could end up being the best add, but whenever there’s a tough situation like that, I always take injuries (luck for the most part) off the table. That leaves you with Washington as the clear lead back whenever he’s healthy, while all the others you’re counting on someone else getting hurt. Would have to say stick with him.

  5. The Harrow says:
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    should mention that if your rid dick evaluations are correct (and i agree) that d-wash DET or zenner if d-wash doesn’t get healthy are good adds.

    • Dominic Hall

      Dominic Hall says:
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      @The Harrow: Ya I didn’t realize Dwayne Washington’s owernship was so low, so I would agree I think he’ll be getting the most carries when he’s healthy. I don’t think any other back is worthy of a roster spot, except Riddick when Washington is hurt though.

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