Welcome to Stat-o-Matic where we will look at some advanced stats around the NFL. As a disclaimer, I am using this space to play around with some numbers and present some interesting findings. But, by no means is this validated or predictive data. I hope that it will lead to meaningful discoveries or it could inspire you to go down your own rabbit hole. We’re going to explore together, crunch some numbers and see what pops out. Stats courtesy of PlayerProfiler.com.

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We all remember the greatest passing tandems in the history of the NFL: Montana to Rice, Manning to Harrison, and AB to his doctor’s face. But make room legends, there’s a new connection in town: Lock to Sutton. It was a solid debut for the Broncos’ 2nd round pick out of Mizzou, as Drew Lock went 18/28 for 134 yards, adding 3 carries for 15 yards and throwing his first two career touchdown passes. But the real story was that both touchdowns were thrown to second year breakout Courtland Sutton who finished the game with 4 catches for 75 yards and now has 6 touchdowns on the season. Could the the 3rd time be the charm for John Elway drafted QBs? Brock Osweiler (2012 2nd rounder) and Paxton Lynch (2016 1st rounder) were worse investments than the Razzball coin I bought off Grey last year. Maybe, just maybe, this Lock/Sutton hook up could be something special for years to come. Anyway, here’s what else I saw during yesterday afternoon’s games for fantasy football:    

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Thanksgiving week is almost upon us and a nice division battle between two playoff contenders was sure to heat up enough to start thawing out those turkeys. The Colts came limping into Houston with their extensive injury report to take on the Houston Texans who were coming off a complete thrashing that was provided by Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens.

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We are coming down the end of this article for the season. Next week will be it. But before it ends, let’s look at some players who could help or hurt you come playoff time for fantasy.

At this point of the season, there are few real chances to sell high or buy low. But there are still players to look at for trades. Whether it be someone to acquire, or someone you have been holding who needs to go. We will now take a look at some of those players here.

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James Conner and Benny Snell were ruled out for week 10, paving the way for Jaylen Samuels to lead this backfield. Surprisingly, it was un-drafted RB Trey Edmunds that led the Steelers on the ground- recording the most carries (12), rushing yards (73), and yards per carry (6.1). At the end of the day, Jaylen Samuels ended up with the better fantasy outing (19.3 PPR points to Edmunds 7.3) and recorded more snaps, 40 for Jaylen to Edmunds 17 snaps (63.5% to 27%). Samuels managed an uninspiring 1.2 yards per carry, but salvaged his outing through the air. Jaylen finished with 13 catches on 13 targets for 73 receiving yards. Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, James Conner is recovering from an AC joint injury and is expected to miss at least 2 weeks. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that 2019 4th-round rookie, Benny Snell is expected to miss at least 2-3 weeks after undergoing a minor surgery on his meniscus. Trey Edmunds is name to consider adding from waivers this week for fantasy owners desperate for running back depth. Pittsburgh’s next matchups, 4 out of 5, are against the Cleveland Browns (2x), Arizona Cardinals, and Cincinnati Bengals. All are plus matchups for the Steelers running game.

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A clash between two AFC teams that enter week 8 with highest projected point total, thanks to the reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes sidelined while he recovers from a knee injury.

Per NFL Next Gen Stats, Derek Carr has the 11th highest passer rating and NFL best completion percentage (74.1). On paper, this is an interesting matchup for Carr who is: facing a defense that has allowed the 4th most receiving yards per game, just placed DB Phillip Gaines on IR, are without DB Bradley Roby until after their bye week, have DB Tashaun Gibson questionable, and are 6.5 point road dogs. BUT Carr ranks 9th in fewest pass attempts per game, has the 8th fewest passes over 20 yards, lacks elite receiving weapons outside of his TE and has a head coach who is enamored with running the ball. Carr is best viewed as a 2-QB league starter and desperation spot fill in 1-qb leagues. Rudy projects Carr as QB21 in week 8.

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Kerryon Johnson was ruled out during Sunday’s bout against the Minnesota Vikings with a reported knee injury. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Monday that Kerryon is expected to miss a couple of weeks. Ty Johnson led the backfield in snaps on Sunday and will be this weeks top RB waiver add. JD McKissic, who was slightly more efficient with his touches than Ty, is a speculative add in deeper formats and for RB needy owners in PPR leagues. If Kerryon’s injury is longer than 1-2 weeks, don’t be surprised to see the Lions make an acquisition at the running back position. Jay Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount are names to watch, unless the Lions make a trade with another NFL team. Both Ajayi and Blount have had workouts for other NFL teams in recent weeks. Either would be worth a bench stash if acquired. Kerryon and the Lions running game has underwhelmed this season, tied for the 11th worst in the league in yards per rush attempts (3.8) and 14th worst in yards per game. Unless you own Kerryon or have huge holes at the RB position, I would not waste top waiver priority position OR blow my FAAB money. We know Ty Johnson is expected to take over the #1 spot, but there is too much uncertainty. The Lions could make an acquisition or decide to treat the backfield like a true RBBC with McKissic, until Kerryon returns.

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You have to love when two guys have career days and the starting percentages are probably pretty low on them. I say pretty low because I’m sure there were people in bad bye week spots or in deeper leagues that had to start Chase Edmonds or Marvin Jones Jr. Marvin Jones is a solid WR3 for fantasy but I don’t think that many were elated about slotting him in against the Vikings. For those that were savvy enough to start Jones Jr., he rewarded them with 10 catches, 93 yards and 4 touchdowns. That is a best ball format wet dream. In the leagues that I own Jones Jr., I can’t see myself leaving him on the bench again against the Giants next week. 

Chase Edmonds was a different type of situation. David Johnson was named active going into the game and he took one carry for 2 yards and didn’t touch the ball again for the rest of the game. I’m guessing that the majority of people that heard Johnson was active took Edmonds out of their lineup. Well, Edmonds carried the ball 27 times for 126 yards and 3 touchdowns. Incredible. Let’s get to some other performances from the early slate on Sunday.

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We’re getting to the part of the season where the teams that started hot make way for new teams to start to get hot. The Kansas City Chiefs looked unbeatable until they showed a chink in their armor in Detroit, and the Texans looked pretty pedestrian until recently. The Texans were a popular upset pick for Sunday, but it’s still surprising to see them come back from an early 14 point deficit when it looked like the Chiefs were going to roll right over them. 

The Vikings passing game has looked lethargic so far this season with a lot of the blame being placed on Kirk Cousins when really Kevin Stefanski and Mike Zimmer deserve a lot of the heat. Stefon Diggs, who is one of the most talented wide receivers in the league, was left for dead by this Vikings offense. Until Sunday when he went off for 3 touchdowns. Things in this league can shift at any time. 

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