As we prepare for the 2020 season, there are tons of hot takes swirling around the internet. Some are baseless tweets and articles meant to stir up conversation and clicks. Others are bold predictions that do have some foundation in reality, even if it’s a long shot. I plan to make this article somewhere in the middle. 

Football is set up for small samples with only 16 games in a season and roughly 55-65 offensive snaps per game. In football, even a player with “a lot” of volume may only participate in a fantasy relevant play on 20 of those snaps. Contrast that with baseball where each hitter on a team sees 600 at bats in a season! 

For this exercise I will highlight a player or situation on each team in the NFL using a nugget from 2019. You need to decide for yourself whether the information should dictate your position or whether it’s just a fun statistical oddity chalked up to sampling bias.

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It’s NFL Draft Week 2020! I hope you are all planning to celebrate in some kind of awesome way. I will be setting up a draft prediction pool and running a Zoom poker night while the picks come in. This is the closest thing to sports we’ve had since the shutdown and we have to bask in its glow.

While I think it’s valuable to have your favorite prospects in some tiered order pre-draft, there’s no way to ignore that landing spot matters to some extent. In dynasty I think your own talent evaluation should be weighted most, but for redraft leagues landing spot is very important in how we should view a rookie’s year 1 potential. I have laid out my rankings for QB, RB, WR, and TE previously but now will give you my favorite rookie landing spots.

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As I crawled through the desert wearing my backpack filled to the brim with toilet paper and various lotions, dying of sports thirst, a small rain drop landed squarely on my nose. The NFL players narrowly approved a new collective bargaining agreement Saturday night, lengthening the season by one game and expanding the playoffs to 14 teams; the rain drop for which I’d been longing. Then on Monday, the flood gates opened with a downpour of high profile free agent signings, trades and franchise taggings on the first day of legal tampering. 

Lightning struck when then Texans inexplicably handed DeAndre Hopkins and a 2021 4th rounder over to the Cardinals in exchange for David Johnson, a 2nd round draft pick and a 2020 4th rounder. The amount of hand sanitizer included in the deal was not disclosed, but my sources tell me at least three ounces of Purell headed back to Houston. The echo chamber seems to believe this move will have a decidedly negative affect on Nuk’s fantasy value, but I’m rose-colored in my year two outlook for the Kliff Kingsbury/Kyler Murray show. If he’s a mid to late 2nd round fantasy pick this year, I’ll dhop all over him.

Later the thunder rumbled as Stefon Diggs was dealt with a 2020 7th rounder to the Bills in exchange for pick #22, their 2020 5th, 2020 6th and 2021 4th rounder. I’ve seen many folks say this was a terrible deal for the Bills, but if you toss the 26 year old Diggs into this draft class he’d go top 10, right? And he’s signed to a reasonably team friendly deal thru 2023. Change of scenery may be just what Diggs needed. I’ll be buying again in 2020 and bumping Josh Allen up my board as well. Anyway, here’s what else I saw for 2020 fantasy football during this already crazy coronavirus-filled NFL offseason:  

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Don’t second guess yourself. I was able to miraculously win a playoff matchup after swapping Jameis Winston out with about 15 seconds until game time. I didn’t really think Christian Kirk was going to have a good week against the stingy Steelers defense, so I swapped him right before that game in favor of the Monday night showdown between the Giants and the Eagles, inserting Sterling Shepard into my lineup in hopes that he’d rekindle the chemistry between him and Eli. And because of these two near-fatal errors, I won my matchup by .3 thanks to a late-change by my opponent to start Kirk Cousins over Matt Ryan. Decisiveness and sticking with your gut is your best friend in fantasy, and the same can apply to daily fantasy.

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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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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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It seems like everyone in the NFL nowadays are listed on their team’s injury reports as “Questionable”, which either means that everyone in the NFL is truly questionable at any given moment in time… or a lot of this is noise created by the fact that we no longer have the “Probable” tag anymore. I’d bet that most of this falls under the latter, rather than the former.

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It’s week 10 of the fantasy football season. After you get done reading this and ask your questions, get all of your housework done because we have 10 hours of great football ahead of us. Well, hopefully. During the early games, the Bears and the Lions will face off in a last ditch effort to keep their seasons alive. The Browns will host Buffalo and try to save face. There are reports that there could be some high winds in that one so keep that in mind when you are setting your DFS and season-long lineups. Patrick Mahomes is back, folks! Patrick Mahomes will make his return against the Tennessee Titans. Our shoot out this week comes in Tampa Bay and a matchup between Jameis Winston and Kyler Murray. There should plenty of fantasy points to go around in that one. 

In the late afternoon, the Panthers face off in Lambeau with Kyle Allen getting another chance to keep the Panthers in the playoff race. The Rams will try and keep themselves in the division race against the surging Pittsburgh Steelers. On Sunday night, Kirk Cousins will try and turn around his historic primetime stench with the Vikings traveling to Dallas to take on the Cowboys. Let’s get to the injuries followed by updated rankings.

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