When most people think of Lynyrd Skynyrd they immediately think of Freebird. Perhaps a few know of Sweet Home Alabama, but it wouldn’t surprise me if many knew the song, but not who sang it. These people I mention are not real Lynyrd Skynyrd fans. Between 1997 and about 2010, I attended eight Lynyrd Skynyrd concerts. Most were on the lawn at the Garden State Arts Center, but a few times I got myself some good seats up front to enjoy the show. Skynyrd concerts are just an all around good time. Good people and great music. Perhaps I’m just a Simple Man, but once Tuesday’s Gone, I’m ready for a Saturday Night Special. So Gimme Three Steps and let’s see what The Stats Machine has to say about Week 8.


Drew Brees (Score: 103.7) – If I hadn’t watched the game myself I would have thought the stat line of 505 yards and 7 touchdowns was a misprint. Coming into this game he was averaging 267 yards and just over a touchdown per game. Heck if he didn’t blow those numbers out of the park. Brees is obviously a guy you are going to start every week and last week was just a reminder why. He comes in at number two in TSM’s year-to-date rankings. Call me the breeze, I keep blowin’ down the road…

Running Back (PPR)

Darren McFadden (Score: 35.66) – Finding McFadden here might come as a surprise to many of you considering he managed only 64 yards on the ground. But he did it against a stingy Seattle defense that has been tough on opposing running backs. Add in 6 receptions for 49 yards for a total of 113 all purpose yards and The Stats Machine will find you. Now Gimme Back My Bullets and move along.

Devonta Freeman (Score: 33.31) – Even though he saw his streak of 100 yard rushing games end at three, Freeman still managed a strong outing with 88 yards. Catching 6 of 8 targets for another 43 yards, he continues to prove why he is, hands down, the top running back in all formats this season.

Honorable Mention: Charcandrick West (29.58)

Running Back

Ronnie Hillman (Score: 29.62) – The running back situation in Denver is a shit show. Hillman only managed 60 yards on 19 carries, but he did find the end zone twice. The week before he rushed for 111 yards and he seems to have emerged as the RB to own in Denver. But who knows. I’m just glad I don’t own either of them.

Charcandrick West (Score: 26.22) – With 97 yards on 20 carries and a touchdown, West is reminding me why I spent $51 of my $100 FAAB on him. In the last two weeks he’s averaged 21 carries, 103 yards and a touchdown. Jamaal who? What’s Your Name?

Honorable Mention: Todd Gurley (25.46), Darren McFadden (24.62), Latavius Murray (24.57) and Devonta Freeman (24.24)

Wide Receiver (PPR)

Odell Beckham Jr (Score: 56.51) – Beckham was targeted 9 times last Sunday. He caught 8 of those targets for 130 yards and 3 touchdowns. A touchdown hat trick for Odell. He’s not the first Beckham to score a hat trick. And no I’m not referring to Gordon Beckham. As far as I can tell he never hit three home runs in a single game. At least not in the Major Leagues. Back to football. American football. Odell Beckham Jr. has emerged as a top five receiver and continues to put up the corresponding statistics.

Honorable Mention: Alshon Jeffery (49.18), Julio Jones (48.75) and A.J. Green (46.51)

Wide Receiver

Odell Beckham Jr (Score: 39.64) – See above

Honorable Mention: Brandin Cooks (26.49), Julio Jones (26.48), Alshon Jeffery (26.32) and Julian Edelman (25.43)

Tight End (PPR)

Jacob Tamme (Score: 43.57) – Here’s what I said about Tamme on Wednesday. “Tamme has been hit or miss this season. And by that I mean he has had two good games and five not so good games. This past week he caught 10 of 12 targets for 103 yards and a touchdown. Great game, belongs on the waiver wire“. I stand by that assessment.

Honorable Mention: Rob Gronkowski (36.55), Gary Barnidge (34.98) and Benjamin Watson (34.95)

Tight End

Jacob Tamme (Score: 31.81) – See above

Rob Gronkowski (Score: 30.67) – I can’t remember a game in which Gronkowski disappointed his owners. Unless, of course, you are expecting multiple touchdowns every week. Last week he had 6 receptions for 113 yards and a touchdown. On the season he is averaging 5.7 catches, 92.3 yards and 1 touchdown per game. That results in just under 21 fantasy points per game. Now I Know A Little and one thing I do know is that Gronk is a worthy first rounder.

With the regular season about halfway through I instructed The Stats Machine to calculate year-to-date rankings. Here are the results.

Year-To-Date Rankings


Tom Brady (82.16)
Drew Brees (72.23)
Philip Rivers (67.56)
Andrew Luck (66.54)
Aaron Rodgers (65.99)
Andy Dalton (65.95)
Blake Bortles (63.69)
Josh McCown (63.03)
Eli Manning (63)
Carson Palmer (62.35)

Running Back (PPR)

Devonta Freeman (34.55)
Matt Forte (30.63)
Le’Veon Bell (30.29)
Jamaal Charles (30.17)
Mark Ingram (28.41)
Dion Lewis (28.04)
Todd Gurley (26.70)
Chris Ivory (25.11)
DeMarco Murray (24.69)
Justin Forsett (24.60)

Running Back

Devonta Freeman (29.82)
Jamaal Charles (25.54)
Le’Veon Bell (25.39)
Matt Forte (25.27)
Todd Gurley (25.17)
Chris Ivory (23.91)
Mark Ingram (23.61)
Doug Martin (22.02)
Adrian Peterson (21.24)
Lamar Miller (20.1)

Wide Receiver (PPR)

Julio Jones (33.54)
DeAndre Hopkins (33.05)
Julian Edelman (30.99)
Odell Beckham Jr. (29.72)
Keenan Allen (28.12)
Larry Fitzgerald (27.34)
Steve Smith Sr. (26.74)
A.J. Green (26.12)
Stefon Diggs (26.09)
Martavis Bryant (25.99)
Calvin Johnson (25.57)
Brandon Marshall (25.42)
Allen Robinson (24.98)
Jarvis Landry (24.79)
Antonio Brown (24.50)
Amari Cooper (24.08)
Jeremy Maclin (24.06)
Randall Cobb (23.49)
Demaryius Thomas (23.33)
T.Y. Hilton (23.09)

Wide Receiver

Julio Jones (19.49)
Odell Beckham Jr. (19.37)
DeAndre Hopkins (19.35)
Martavis Bryant (18.72)
Julian Edelman (18.15)
Larry Fitzgerald (17.16)
Allen Robinson (16.70)
Stefon Diggs (16.20)
James Jones (16.09)
Tavon Austin (16.04)
A.J. Green (15.98)
Steve Smith Sr. (15.85)
Allen Hurns (15.58)
Keenan Allen (15.55)
Amari Cooper (14.98)
Calvin Johnson (14.89)
Jarvis Landry (14.88)
Brandon Marshall (14.77)
Randall Cobb (14.71)
T.Y. Hilton (14.47)

Tight End (PPR)

Rob Gronkowski (32.45)
Antonio Gates (29.13)
Jordan Reed (27.18)
Gary Barnidge (26.88)
Tyler Eifert (35.37)
Greg Olsen (23.72)
Travis Kelce (21.69)
Martellus Bennett (20.65)
Eric Ebron (19.61)
Ladarius Green (19.52)

Tight End

Rob Gronkowski (25.71)
Gary Barnidge (20.38)
Tyler Eifert (20.05)
Antonio Gates (19.21)
Jordan Reed (17.57)
Greg Olsen (17.41)
Ladarius Green (14.92)
Travis Kelce (14.85)
Eric Ebron (14.51)
Crockett Gillmore (14.09)

End of transmission…

  1. J-FOH says:

    Great title but you are jacking my song title sentences from 2014….I’m not mad though, just pissed I’ve slipped in my coolness

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @J-FOH: You rocked a Skynyrd theme Razzball post?

      • J-FOH says:

        @malamoney: no, but I would use song titles to write sentences and hyper link them. 2014, we would do Hip Hop Sundays on the baseball side. I need to work up one for next weeks RCL update, I have only 3 readers so I better hope I hit on a band they like

        That is a great line up of tracks you got there. Was hoping for That Smell but I could see how that would be hard to fit in….unless you are talking about 1st round running backs this year

        • malamoney

          malamoney says:

          @J-FOH: That’s one more reader than I have. I could have worked a few more Skynyrd songs into the mix, but I just got lazy. Oooooooh that smell…

          • J-FOH says:

            @malamoney: I have strategically lost my readers on the football side. I can disappear next year without a trace….unless they click on the baseball

    • The Harrow says:

      @J-FOH: gotta love the mindset that somehow putting song title links in fantasy writing sentences is “yours” and it’s not just likely that Money also thought to do this on his own. sliding down the solipsist pole.

  2. Wacha wacha says:

    In a vaccumm which side do you like in standard?

    Moncrief and a blue or D Williams ?

    Also could you rank these QBs Ros?
    Rivers, Ben, Palmer, Luck, M Ryan, Bree’s, Carr

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @Wacha wacha: Williams.

      Off the top of my head I’d go: Luck, Rivers, Brees, Ben, Palmer, Ryan, Carr

  3. Sange76 says:

    QB Cam, J. Winston, ( Romo IR)
    RB Foster (IR) Hill rd 10 keeper, Ryan Mathews, Pierre Thomas, J. Bell
    WR D. Thomas, B Cooks, S Diggs, W Snead, Hurns, D Moncrief, (J. Nelson IR- rd 13 keeper)
    TE D Walker
    Def St. Louis, Cincy
    K B Walsh

    I am 2-6 after being nailed by injuries and bad luck. Trying to package 2 WR to land Latavius Murray, who I can add to my keeper set in the 9th rd next year. Other owner isnt going for it yet. He offered Murray for D. Thomas straight up, who can not be kept by any team since he was a rd 1 pick.
    At this point in the year, Do I take the deal to add to lock up Murray as a keeper for next year and beyond….or do I still go for it with a lineup built around Cam, Thomas, and a boatload of #2/3 WR’s? Any and all advice appreciated with the trade deadline a week away…

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @Sange76: I’d take a shot at Latavius. Here’s my thinking. You’re RB situation stinks. Adding Murray will be a nice addition. Plus he’s a keeper. Losing Demaryius will hurt, but how much? I love Diggs. If Cooks can come around, the combination of him, Snead, Hurns and Moncrief might absorb a good portion of the loss of Thomas.

      And at 2-6, you’ve got an uphill battle. If you don’t make the playoffs and don’t make the trade, it’s a lose/lose…

  4. friar says:

    Thanks for the great soundtrack (and always insightful fantasy analysis)!

    In my 10-team, 0.5 ppr league, I’m contemplating a couple trade possibilities. No matter what happens, the following players will be on my roster:

    [start QB / 2 RB / 2WR / TE / FLEX]
    QB: Cutler (for now, but I’ve been streaming since the league is shallow)
    RB: Ingram, Lewis, Stewart, Anderson, Michael
    WR: Demaryius, Decker, Moncrief, Stevie Johnson
    TE: Graham

    In addition to that group, depending on whether I make one trade, two trades, or no trades, I will also have one of the following pairs of players:

    A) Stefon Diggs + Travis Kelce
    B) DeAngelo Williams + Ben Watson
    C) Todd Gurley + waiver wire claim (e.g. Romo, Blue, LaFell, or Bennett)

    How would you rank those three options, when added to the other players on my roster? Thanks!

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @friar: C, A, B

  5. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:

    I like to picture Jesus with angel wings, and he’s singing lead vocals for Lynard Skynard and I’m in the front row hammered drunk.

    My favorite Skynard song, Working For MCA. Their whole catalog is full of great guitar playing.

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @Ralph Lifshitz: Wish I could have seen them back in the 70s. Seven years of hard luck, comin down on me…

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:

        @malamoney: Hahaha for sure, tragic stuff.

        First part was a quote from Talladega Nights.

        • J-FOH says:

          @Ralph Lifshitz: Got to check out Skynard’s One More From the Road. Great live album

          • malamoney

            malamoney says:

            @J-FOH: Great album. Think I will unearth that CD for my ride to my soccer game tomorrow. And yes, I actually still have CDs…

  6. Velocity_X says:

    Julius Thomas or ASJ (assuming the latter plays)?

    Need to sit one out of Martavis Bryant, Mike Evans, Allen Hurns, Deangello Williams, Lamar Miller or Ronnie Hillman in a .5 PPR – Was leaning on sitting Hurns. Miller is a little bit of a question for me. Hillman in a potential split with CJ factors in too, but I think he gets enough touches against weak Indy run D.

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @Velocity_X: ASJ if he plays.

      I guess the sit is Hurns, but I really don’t trust Evans. He hasn’t shown me much this season. The only reason I say Hurns is because Evans draws the Giants. I’d still have to consider that one a bit more before a final decision…

  7. A Wesley Snipes Life says:

    here’s guessing your main reason for spending 51/100 on candelabra west had more to do with that team’s RB situation at the time he became a starter.

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @A Wesley Snipes Life: Pretty much. And now that I’ve lost Dion Lewis and Matt Forte, I am going to need West!

  8. A Wesley Snipes Life says:

    Luck must’ve played a hard schedule to be ranked 4th, since he’s much worse in fantasy pts per game at QB position. highest i’m seeing (depending on league) is 9-10th.

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:

      @A Wesley Snipes Life: As of today, he is ranked 7th in points per game. When I get home I will check my file to see where he ranked as far as opposing defenses…

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