If you aren’t familiar with the history between Justin Herbert and Marcus Mariota, I’ll clue you in on the story. Back in middle school the two NFL quarterbacks actually played on the same youth hockey team. It was a rag tag bunch of kids, coached by a down on his luck attorney with a drinking problem. That’s the plot to Mighty Ducks, Hebert and Mariota played college football for the Oregon Ducks, and not even at the same time. Alright, fine random italicized voice, you win. You always win. The point is, they’re both ducks! And one of these ducks quacked just a little louder on Thursday night: rookie Justin Herbert. The kid went off in primetime going 22/32 for 314 yards, 4 carries for 14 yards, 2 passing touchdowns and 1 rushing touchdown–he now has 27 passing touchdowns on the year, tying the all-time rookie record. Unfortunately, the quarterback he’s just tied isn’t a legend like Peyton Manning or Tom Brady, it’s Baker Mayfield. Wah, wah. It’s an impressive feat regardless, and Herbert still has two full games remaining. He’s going to be good for a long time. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday for fantasy football:
Austin Ekeler – 13 carries for 60 yards, 4 catches for 19 yards. The temptation to use this post as a therapeutic venting session is strong. My fantasy football therapist can’t get me in this week due to COVID demand increases. We knew Ekeler was on a bit of a snap count coming into Thursday night, but did Anthony Lynn really have to hand all the goal line carries to Kalen Ballage (8 carries for 11 yards and his 2nd touchdown)? 8 carries for 11 yards! 11 yards! I just threw up a little in my mouth.
Keenan Allen – 1 catch for 17 yards. About 10 minutes prior to kick off, the Fox pregame camera briefly caught a glimpse of Allen in warmups and he advised fantasy owners, “Don’t sit me.” Whoops! At least he was being sincere, I think.
Mike Williams – 2 catches for 22 yards. Like Allen, Big Mike didn’t play very many snaps, but it was also a bit of a surprise that he even played at all. And Williams still might’ve hauled in a touchdown if it weren’t for blatant end zone pass interference which set up the Ballage vulture touchdown.
Tyron Johnson – 3 catches for 61 yards and his 3rd touchdown. I had the new Johnson on the block slotted in as a high end WR3 streaming option under the assumption that Allen and Williams would sit. But when they were both announced active I had to put the Johnson down in my week 15 fantasy rankings. Turns out Allen and Williams might as well have been inactive and Tyron actually was a great streaming option.
Hunter Henry – 5 catches for 65 yards and his 4th touchdown. Henry is a testament to just how low the TE1 bar remains. He’s fringing on top 5 fantasy tight end and he’s posted seven games with 50 receiving yards or less while not finding the endzone. And Henry has zero games with 70 receiving yards since week two. Woof.
Derek Carr – 3/5 for 53 yards before leaving on the second drive with a sore left groin. Both my left and right groins are sore after starting him in the semifinals of the Razzball Fantasy Football Podcast Dynasty League. I know what you’re thinking, starting Carr in the fantasy playoffs is pathetic. Fair, but it’s 14 teams and the rest of my team is stacked and this was a great matchup and other QB was Cam Newton and why have the fantasy gods forsaken meeeee! Sorry, I forgot I wasn’t going to digress into complaining about my fantasy teams in this post. Feel free to vent all of your own fantasy complaints in the comments below and I’ll pretend to care as long as you pretend to care about mine. Anyway, Marcus Mariota (17/28 for 226 yards, 9 carries for 88 yards, 1 passing touchdown and 1 rushing touchdown) came in and looked shockingly good. Maybe we’ll see him regain another starting gig down the road but he’s still under contract for another year in Vegas and it’s highly unlikely Mariota supplants Carr.
Josh Jacobs – 26 carries for 76 yards, 3 catches for 38 yards and his 10th touchdown. The Jinglehammer has underwhelmed for going on a month as the Raiders are now on a four game losing streak. The volume returned this week after only 37 carries in the previous three games, but Jacobs still only averaged 2.9 yards per carry and if you take away his one 20 yard run that average drops to a pathetic 2.2 YPC. Not exactly confidence inspiring as we head into the fantasy championship week.
Darren Waller – 9 catches for 150 yards and his 8th touchdown. You know what they say, a GIF is worth a bajillion words: