We all love a good story of every analyst’s wet dream having a break out season and making them look smart. Aaron Jones was a favorite for a lot of fantasy football content producers because of his skill set and big play ability. 2019 was his true coming out party and the Packers have to be thrilled a few years after Eddie Lacy didn’t work out (probably literally). 

I’m not here to fat shame or clown on eating disorders. I’m no clean bill of health. My ticker is probably begging for a sliver of kale or some asparagus but instead I respond with, “at least I drink more spiked seltzers than beer now.” In fact, who can resist the various brats, cheeses, and ice creams that the great state of Wisconsin has to offer? Eddie could not, but I wish him well and I’m sure he’s living a great post-NFL life. If he wasn’t, he’d probably be trying to crack an XFL roster. 

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Joe Mixon as a keeper is definitely a conversation starter. There are people on the polar opposite sides of opinion when it comes to Mixon’s future production. Then there are analysts like myself that take it year to year on Mixon. Most of the time, it comes down to what kind of value I’m getting and what kind of pieces that he has around him.

Joe Mixon was drafted in the early to middle of the 2nd round in 12-team leagues last season. Drafters who were sweet on Mixon figured that his skill set would lead to the sky being the limit for him, which I totally understand. Mixon was coming off of a top-10 PPR finish in 2018 and heading in the right direction going into this season. 

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We are three weeks removed from the Super Bowl and sprinting down the stretch of the college basketball season and fantasy baseball draft season is starting to take form for most. But fantasy football is a 12 month per year sport. I’ve already drafted a start up dynasty team this off season and can’t wait for free agency, the combine and the draft. We have a ton of NFL draft content on the site for you to sort through and there is plenty more to come. 

The wide receiver position had some great break out performances this season and also some disappointment at the top of the fantasy draft board. Some of the guys that we are accustomed to didn’t live up to their draft day price, while a few of the players that had preseason hype of a discounted price lived up to their potential. Just like we do every season, we had an unexpected breakout from a player that nobody was talking about. And in 2019, that player was D.J. Chark. Chark did have a few outlier games, but one of the more impressive parts of his season was the consistency of his stats. It didn’t matter who was taking snaps under center. Chark went from a fantasy waiver wire pick up to a guy that caught 73 balls for over 1,000 yards and 8 touchdowns. Let’s break down the 2019 wide receiver leader board based on a few key stats. 

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The number 28 is a special one when it comes to running backs in the NFL so it is safe to say that Josh Jacobs chose wisely in that aspect. Marshall Faulk, Curtis Martin, Adrian Peterson, Corey Dillon, and Fred Taylor all wore the number 28. But there is one more legend who toted the rock that wore 28 and that is my personal favorite, Warrick Dunn. Growing up a Tampa fan, Dunn captured my admiration in the late 90’s and early 00’s. He left Tampa the year before they finally got over the Super Bowl hump for dirty south neighbor (but not yet division rivals) the Atlanta Falcons. Dunn actually had a couple of his best statistical seasons in Atlanta in 2004 and 2005, but he’ll always be a Buc to me, dammit! Plus, it’s hard to say anything negative about a guy who has helped build and gifted 145 houses to single parents in need.

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Nicknames are fun. Especially when they’re natural, effortless and catch on; like Air Jordan, Refrigerator Perry or Squeak from Baseketball. Back in college they used to call me ‘Big Dumb Animal.’ It was accurate. Then a few years back I was out on the golf course and sunk a 15 foot putt to win a match and secure a decent chunk of change for my team. I tried to coin a new nickname: ‘Big Dick and Putts.’ It didn’t stick, but I tried.

Terry McLaurin is no stranger to the nickname game. It was a hot topic around the fantasy community during his rookie season. Many critics attempted to shoot down the unoriginal ‘Scary Terry’ nickname coined by Case Keenum in training camp, prompting alternate options: McLaurin F1, Touchdown Terry and, my personal favorite, Terrence of Scarabia. But I keep coming back around to the original-unoriginal nickname, because the visual of Scary Terry from Rick and Morty is just too good:

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This is a little different than the D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett post. Neither Metcalf or Lockett produced the yardage that Godwin or Evans did. Metcalf and Lockett are also not in quarterback limbo going into the new decade. Jameis Winston led the league in passing yards in 2019, but he also threw 30 interceptions and capped off the season with an overtime pick six. That’s not exactly the way garner a lot of confidence from your coach and front office in a contract year. 

Bruce Arians’ January comments didn’t scream that the Bucs want to give Winston the big long term deal that he desires. But honestly, what better choice do the Buccaneers have in free agency? Philip Rivers is pretty much the same quarterback as Winston without the upside. Tom Brady is as old as dirt. Teddy Bridgewater also doesn’t have the ceiling that Winston has. The Buccaneers might as well franchise tag Winston and see what he can do in the 2nd year in Arians’ system. Chances are, that’s what the decision will be, but hey, I’ve seen way dumber decisions be made by franchises. 

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The zero RB truth-ing will never stop. But maybe, just maybe, the 2019 season results will put a halt to the growth of it’s following. When looking at the top 12 finishes for 2019 in PPR leagues: 5 of the players were running backs, 6 were quarterbacks (obviously), and there was only one wide receiver. Of the 5 running backs that finished in the top 12, 3 of them had 2019 ADPs in the top 15. Those players were Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook, and somehow Ezekiel Elliott. 

I’m sort of trolling with that first paragraph, zero RB is by no means a bad strategy. An easy counter argument is to point out how well Austin Ekeler, Mark Ingram, and Chris Carson finished. Austin Ekeler was a popular zero RB target and we’ll get to him a little later.

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Strategy hardly ever changes for quarterbacks. Late round quarterback has been the way to go for quite some time in the fantasy football world. The last two seasons we had eruptions from late round quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson. We even had a big late season showing from Jameis Winston who was being drafted outside of the top 10 of quarterbacks. Fantasy football seems so easy!

The difficulty always lies in finding the RIGHT late round quarterback. If you put your sleeper eggs into the Mitchell Trubisky basket, you probably found yourself drowning your sorrows in a bottle Malort. Ahh, Malort. My favorite Malort saying is, “It’s easier telling someone that you have nothing to live for.” 

Rookie quarterbacks are so exciting. There are always a few exciting new names to look closely at. I was extremely impressed watching Joe Burrow a couple of weeks back. We already know that Burrow is 99.99999% going to be a Cincinnati Bengal next year. Unless he decides to pull an Eli Manning and tells his agent that he would refuse to sign in a rust belt industrial purgatory. So assuming Burrow ends up smoking cigars in Cincinnati, the Bengals would be wise to improve their offensive line during free agency. The Bengals ranked 26th in the NFL in adjusted sack rate in 2019. 

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It is hard enough to pick the right fantasy WRs in a given season, even with years of NFL production under their belt. It is much more challenging to select a rookie to bolster your dynasty roster. Even with all the fantastic resources via Twitter, ranging from film junkies to data nerds, picking the next stud WR feels like a shot in the dark. There are some things we do know about college prospects that can guide us through these muddy waters:

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At Razzball, our main goal is helping our readers and subscribers win their fantasy football leagues and entertain in the process. But now that the regular season is over, I am indulging in an ‘industry insider’ piece that will entertain only the dorkiest of you all. I will not take it personal if you just stop reading now or abandon ship before finishing. You have been warned…

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