Finally Election Day is upon us! And I know exactly what you’re thinking: Donkey, how can I vote Marquez Valdes-Scantling onto my fantasy team when 7 different commercials just exposed him as the rape-loving, baby-murdering, puppy-hating heathen he is? 

Fortunately for Marquez, his only opposition is Chief Geronimo Allison who’s also a rape-loving, baby-murdering, puppy-hating heathen. Geronimo also happens to fund terrorism and will miss at least 6 weeks due to core surgery. MVS is yet another in a long line of rookie wide receivers I’m recommending. He has a top QB and a clear path to targets; mark him down as a must-add in all leagues and call him a WR3 for the time being. Anyway, here’s some more players to buy or sell this week in fantasy football:

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Instead of throwing a table on Monday’s post, I think that a separate post for PPR is justifiable. I can talk about players who make a jump up in PPR for beginners and we can always discuss in the comment section. PPR is my preferred method of scoring. What can I say? I’m a sucker […]

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The talk of this week at the running back situation has been Wendell Smallwood. If you don’t believe me, take a scroll through the last dozen or so Razzball articles to see the takes and advice. With Darren Sproles somehow breaking his arm and tearing his ACL on the same play, there are touches available in Philadelphia. LeGarrette Blount is still around and actually looked productive on Sunday, and Corey Clement scored his first career touchdown and could rotate into games going forward, but Smallwood is the guy who stands to benefit the most from the Sproles injury. If you don’t believe me, the Eagles offensive coordinator said as much in his press conference on Tuesday. I have the transcript if you want it.

For me, though, there is a more exciting running back to target. Heading into Week 3, we knew two things: 1. There would be a new offensive coordinator. 2. Marvin Lewis has been coaching the Bengals for 15 years without winning a single playoff game. Number 1 is relevant for fantasy owners, while number 2 is simply fascinating.

The position to watch in Week 3 was running back, as it was expected that we could see more Joe Mixon and less Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard. And that is exactly what happened. Mixon looked like the complete running back he was projected to be coming out of college, gaining more than 100 yards from scrimmage on 21 total touches. Expect that trend to continue going forward, as Mixon should only get better and the Bengals should continue to ride him.

I talked up Mixon last week as a great buy-low option prior to the change at offensive coordinator. Hopefully, you either drafted and stashed him or grabbed him on waivers last week because he is less likely to be available this week. But if he is, grab him and go. On the flip side, I would also try to hold onto Jeremy Hill and/or Giovani Bernard if you have the kind of league that provides you with the roster/bench space to do so. It looks like Mixon will be the guy, but we have seen before that one week doesn’t mean everything and that injuries happen all the time. If you have to pick one, I would probably lean Bernard in PPR.

To the charts!

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Week 3 was a crazy, crazy week. Thanks Trump! I kidd. Blake Bortles, Case Keenum, and Eli Manning all threw for at least three touchdowns, with Bortles throwing four! The Jets dominated. It gets crazier, though. Eight of the games on Sunday had the road teams as favorites. The Jaguars, Colts, Bears, Jets, Bills, and Redskins all took care of business at home. Bow wow wow yipee yo yipee ya! Home dogs! The Lions should have won and the Chargers…well, just scroll down to the recap of that game and all will become clear.

The 2017-2018 Razzball Commenter Leagues for Basketball are now open. Get more info and join here!

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Does anyone else get the old Sherwin Williams jingle stuck in their head when they see Kerwynn Williams’s name? No? Just me?

Anyway, welcome to the 2017 Handcuff Report. For those who followed this post last season, welcome back. For those who are new, where were you last year? Too good for us? I have researched other available handcuff reports and tell give you my completely unbiased opinion that none of them are half as good as this one. Shame on you, and welcome.

So, first things first: what exactly is a handcuff? For the fantasy football n00bs out there, or perhaps for those who have taken the last few years off, a handcuff is a backup who will likely take over as the starter in the event of an injury, extreme ineffectiveness, off-the-field trouble, or coach’s decision. There are probably other reasons that I am forgetting here, but those are the most common one.

Most NFL teams now run a running back by committee of some sort. While not every team is as unpredictably maddening as the Patriots, most teams share the load in an effort to keep guys fresh and give defenses different looks. With fantasy leagues more competitive than ever, thanks to sites like Razzball offering great advice, it is important to recognize trends and identify value quickly. If you drafted a stud running back early, you might want to grab his handcuff in case of injury. Or if you went zero RB or went really light on RB early, you might want to squat on a couple handcuffs or, especially in PPR leagues, grab a change-of-pace/pass catching back. With the influx of young running backs and each team having two or three options this season, I tended to do the latter in drafts this year. For every Melvin Gordon, I have like two Shane Vereens or Theo Riddicks this year. Speaking of young running backs:

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Hello everyone, and welcome to another post in our Razzball Divison Preview series. Today I’m taking a look at the NFC North, which, in my opinion, is one of the most interesting divisions in fantasy this year. There are so many storylines and moves that occurred over the offseason that have made this division incredibly relevant fantasy-wise (not that it hasn’t been in the past though). This could either be a great division, or a frustrating one, but we’ll have to see how it shakes out during the regular season itself. But we can’t wait forever, right? So let’s get started now and talk about these four interesting teams.

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Isaiah Crowell Cleveland Browns
After giving my selection for most underrated and overrated players in upcoming fantasy football drafts, my pick for biggest sleeper is Cleveland Browns running back Isaiah Crowell. Most importantly, “The Crow” has the privilege of running behind a newly revamped offensive line that includes ProFootballFocus.com‘s top offensive guard duo of Kevin Zeitler and Joel Bitonio in addition to future Hall-of-Fame left tackle Joe Thomas and free agent addition Center J.C. Tretter. Last season, the Browns offensive line ranked in the Top5 in terms of creating yards before contact for running backs, and the line has only gotten better.  Crowell, the 24 year-old former first overall running back recruit out of high school, believes that he will have a “Monster Season” and coach Hue Jackson has stressed during OTA interviews how the need to get the running game going early in games from the start of the season to set the tone for the franchise moving forward. Early reports out of training camp suggest that backup running back Duke Johnson is actually the leader for the slot receiver role, which further solidifies Crowell as a rare workhorse volume running back. Another major factor in Crowell’s sleeper status is that he is currently ranked as the 13th best running back per FantasyPros.com with an ADP of 25, making him a 3rd round pick depending on league size. Looking at the names in the same tier as Crowell, he is slotted about right where he should be when taken in consensus, but in many drafts, rookie running backs Joe Mixon and Christian McCaffery may leapfrog Crowell based on pedigree and training camp hype. Even a player like Marshawn Lynch, who is 2 year removed from the NFL grind and has a stable of capable young running backs behind him could sneak his way past Crowell by the time your draft rolls around in late August.

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Whether it’s real or fantasy football, we see time and again the difference between winning and losing can come down to just one play. The Denard Robinson stat correction fiasco of last year’s playoffs caused a change in many a fantasy football result. Yet, few are as frustrating as an official’s call affecting player points, like holding on a TD run or offensive pass interference on a big gainer.

That got me thinking, did anyone suffer bitter defeat because of points taken away from Duke Johnson last week, when inexplicably, officials ruled Washington recovered the ball on a fumble that was never actually lost? I’ve yet to see it in the fantasy football universe, but if it happened to any of you out there, comment below. Regardless, like a mysterious recovery, we fumble through the Week 4 update…

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Contrary to most people, Fantasy Football actually reinforces my belief in a higher power. Because in my opinion, the statistical probability that the Bears would be so uniquely irrelevant for such a long amount time is far less likely than a giant vengeful sky man wanting to live with you when you die. And if we are talking in terms of fantasy (something we do from time to time), it doesn’t seem that long ago when Jay Cutler was doing his best impersonation of Jay Cutler, but with a cast of Matt Forte, Martellus Bennett, Brandon Marshall, and Alshon Jeffery. Sure, they were still full of derp, still kinda bordered the line between mediocre and hilarious, but they had an offense. More importantly, they had an offense that you wanted to draft on your team. Now all that’s left is Alshon Jeffery living in Hoyer Country. (If he throws a Hail Mary, what shall they do about their papist neighbors?) So whats wrong with the Bears offense? Is it: A) Hoyer can’t throw the ball, B) Kevin White doesn’t know what a Route Tree is, C) The offensive line can’t block, D) Alshon Jeffery hasn’t cared since they shipped Marshall off to the Jets, or E.) All the above? And sure, lets give some credit to the Cowboys. Ezekiel Elliott had a terrific game on the ground (kudos to Zach for calling it in his Start ‘Em/Sit ‘Em post), and Dak Presscott looks pretty legitimate. I mean, let’s be honest, drafting a good quarterback by accident is just about the most Cowboys thing ever. But while I deal with my own feelings as a Chargers fan (alcohol is involved), I have to wonder why the Bears even exist right now, but then I remember that the Cleveland Browns are still a thing and it all makes sense.

Here’s what else I saw in Sunday’s Week 3 games…

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Was it just me, or were running backs pretty disappointing during the first week? It could just be me. My weekend consisted of a bachelor party and watching the games at a bar in New Jersey on Sunday sandwiched between two three-hour flights.  Sure, there were good performances, but overall it left me feeling validated that I targeted wide receivers in the early rounds over running backs whenever possible. Anyway, here we are with the week two handcuff, which I guess is technically the first full handcuff report. If you didn’t already know, I will be writing the handcuff report this year, and it should be available every Wednesday morning. With this being the first week of games, we will have to try and determine which performances we can expect to see repeated and which ones we are less likely to see repeated on a regular basis.

Those of who you took David Johnson early are feeling pretty good right now. Those of you who took Todd Gurley are probably feeling slightly less good. If you grabbed a bunch of talent in the first few rounds and then snatched up C.J. Anderson and Ameer Abdullah, you probably won your matchup this week. But those guys are all RB1s, and we hate them here because we are more worried about the scrubs who can steal some points in the coming weeks.

Okay, here we go…

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