I hope that everyone had a safe and happy 4th of July. The heat was brutal but the brisket was mouth watering and the brats were rather phallic. The passing of the 4th of July is a big landmark to me for the football season. It usually means that we are just a little over two months away from the regular season! That may even be true this season as well, but as the positive cases swell and regulations begin to be put back in place, my anxiety builds. But we must press on and be prepared for the best. I remain hopeful that NFL football will be played and that the safety of the players and staffs will go off without a hitch. 

With #SFBX beginning the drafting process tomorrow I continue to research interesting and maybe even tossed aside names. Someone who seems to be tossed aside is a running back with an inside track to a GIANT workload and he’s being drafted just inside of the top 100. He is a player who had incremental improvements in his 2nd NFL season and changes to the offense in 2020 that greatly benefit him if he can hold up his end of the bargain. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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At the highest-stakes Texas hold ’em poker table in Iowa, you put your career on the line. Every Friday, a group of graduate students gathered at a professor’s house. This professor, he was short, balding, and a British footballer. If it was your first time at his table, you’d drink wine for free and he’d chip $10 into the pot for you. He’d grab an LP, something you never heard before but was charming, like The Doves or Interpol. A 500-page book sat at the edge of the poker table, and the professor talked about the awards it won and his Cambridge education. He’d invite you back for another game, but next time, you bring the wine and chip in $20 to the pot. By the fifth game, you’re bringing snacks and booze and maybe some of his groceries. The book was always on the table, as were the stories of Cambridge. One night, the soundtrack would be Tom Waits for three hours straight. Who listens to Tom Waits for that long? Of course, he asked you to get the $60 bottle of wine because you’re enjoying your time so much. Seems like the professor is winning more than usual tonight. Around 11PM, you notice there’s some cards missing from the discard pile nearby the professor. You mention it. The professor stands, his hand on his award-winning book, his mood affected by the Pinot Noir you paid for. He looks you in the eye and says, “You’re accusing an award-winning, full professor in your department, from Cambridge, of cheating?” And you realize: it’s the cost of the wine and the buy-in, or your career. You went swimming with the sharks, and you got eaten. You back down. Tom Waits keeps growling in the background. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

On June 26th, Razzball’s own, B_Don @RazzBDon, was Twittering with someone about the legitimacy of Gardner Minshew’s rushing ability.

I immediately headed over to PlayerProfiler.com and typed in Peyton Manning. 4.90 40-yard dash time. Whoa. Gardner Minshew? 4.97. Now, Minshew’s college rushing production is skewed because he only attempted 38 rushes for -76 yards in two years at East Carolina, while he rushed 58 times for 119 yards in his one year at Washington State, but the 40-time and comparison to Manning picqued my interest, so I scurried down the rabbit hole to explore. Here’s what I found:

My first query was for seasons in which any quarterback in the history of the league rushed for at least 340 yards. I used that number because Minshew accumulated 344 yards on the ground last season. The results brought 136 instances, but there were players I couldn’t get 40-yard times from, such as Bob Davis from 1944 and Johnny Lujack from 1950. As a result, I decided on using the arbitrary year of 1999 for this piece. Why 1999? Well, 20 years of data is a reasonable sample size and 1999 was the first year when 40 times were timed electronically.

Here’s the list by 40 time:

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There was a conspiracy theory that was being widely floated that the Patriots planned on tanking the 2020 season to put themselves in position to draft Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 draft. As far fetched as it was, I wouldn’t put anything past Bill Belichick. The man isn’t getting any younger and finding success without Tom Brady is clearly at the top of his priority list. 

It was only a matter of time before the Patriots brought in Cam Newton. Apparently this deal has been in the works for a while but Covid provided difficulties with physicals and workouts. But alas, Cam will be an NFL starting quarterback on a very team friendly deal that probably comes with some under the table cigar shop investments from Robert Kraft. The personality fit will be the most interesting part of this whole experiment. Cam Newton has always been a player to show a lot of personality. He’s honest, willing to talk, he loves to smile, he loves to celebrate, and he loves to interact with fans. He’s the exact opposite of Tom Brady during his time with the Patriots outside of a few instagram productions and a very weird Facebook show.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What wide receiver stats really matter? If you scroll through Twitter on any given day you will see a plethora of numbers backing up sleepers, busts and “league winners” among other things. For WRs you’ve got YAC stans, yards/target pushers, market share aficionados and everywhere in between. It’s easy to get excited when you see that a certain player had 25 yards/reception and is in line for increased targets the next year!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

If you been following along with my preseason player profiles, you have probably noticed that I haven’t written a lot about the upper tier of wide receivers. As I have previously written, my fantasy portfolio will have a lot of diversity because of Covid-19, but the only WR I’ll take any chances on in the first round is Tyreek Hill, assuming Michael Thomas doesn’t fall to the back half of the round. 

With so much depth at the WR position, I’ll be starting most of my 1-QB drafts RB-RB. This isn’t to be confused with my crazy community college nights where I went streaking with a Beef-n-Cheddar and curly fries in hand chanting, “Arby’s! Arby’s!” If you’re wondering, eat your curly fries quickly while in the middle of a display of public nudity. Cops won’t feed them to you when you’re in handcuffs no matter how nicely you ask. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

When looking at defensive back rankings you’ll notice a fair amount of variance. Scoring systems play a role, but attempting to predict how many passes a player will “defense” or intercept is far from a science. It is why the top of most IDP rankings are filled with safeties with high tackle profiles and not the highly touted cornerbacks. Here I’ll highlight players 26-50 after covering 1-25 last week.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I love buying my boy toys. Wait. That didn’t come out right. I love buying my child, who is a boy, items to play with for his enjoyment. The smile on his face, the hug I receive, and the “Thank you, daddy. I love you” are what make it all worth it. But, but, but….the better half of me always smacks some reality into my life. “You bought anoooooooooooother toy? He has too many! What about <insert random toy> he just got? You know he’s going to play with it for a week then dump it into the corner like all the rest, right?” This time will be different, I say. Fast forward to a few weeks and…..Yup. Rinse and repeat. That is why she is the better half. Anyways, as with my caveman ancestors, I evolved and stopped buying so many toys. As a result, my boy started going back to the OGs, the old reliables, the go-tos, and they produced and brought joy into his life. I see the same dynamic play out in the fantasy football landscape. The shiny new toy comes in and takes the league by storm, pushing the reliable veteran to the side. For 2020, D. K. Metcalf is being drafted as the 47th overall player while Tyler Lockett has a 58 ADP in NFFC drafts from 5/1 to 6/21. That’s crazy to me and here’s why:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

While I have your attention, why don’t you check out our new YouTube show Fantasy Football Malpractice. A fresh new episode 6 dropped with special guest Sam Wallace from Rotoviz! If you like what you see then subscribe for more!

Welcome to the master list of my devy prospects for single QB leagues! This installment will be players ranked 41-60. If you missed it, check out my top 20 devy rankings and top 40 ddevy rankings.

For those new to devy: in a “devy” league, short for developmental, managers can select players who are still in college (or high school) and stash them on a separate, inactive roster until they are drafted into the NFL. In this format, the player values can be all over the place and each manager’s process for player evaluation becomes of utmost importance. 

I have previously released articles with my position-specific rankings which describe in more detail my process and what I look for when ranking devy prospects. Check those out here: QB, RB, WR, and TE. 

Some of the position rankings have changed as I have moved through the offseason so this is the most updated order. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The last few years I’ve become obsessed with food truck culture. Tacos, burgers, Neopolitan pizza, fried rice. You name it, there’s a food truck for it. I also might just love food that’s going to kill me or the show The Great Food Truck Race. Actually, Food Network in general is just quality programming. They have all the Guy Fieri one person could ever dream of. And I dream a lot about having frosted tips, outdated sunglasses, flame button up shirts, and excessive pinky and wrist jewelry. 

Quarterbacks are the food trucks of fantasy football. You don’t need to pay a lot of capital to get quality as long as you know where to look.

Please, blog, may I have some more?