There are a lot of obvious start & sit candidates for this week. Patriots vs Falcons? Give me everyone involved in the passing game. Bucs/Bills? I don’t want anything to do with the Bucs offense. Rams vs Cardinals? I’m bullish on the Rams. Start your stars and take a shot on some of these guys below if you’re suffering through the Texans/Lions bye week like I am. I own Deshaun Watson, DeAndre Hopkins and Lamar Miller in one of my leagues. I’m prepared for the L, but will be trusting my own advice in this article. Live by the Razz, die by the Razz!

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Note to self: don’t get cute with your picks. Not only will the readers let you hear it, but it’ll blow up in your face. I threw one too many hail marys in my article last week and I’m not sure if any of them were caught. Odell Beckham, Brandin Cooks and Russell Wilson are just a few of the guys who this idiot recommended. Don’t worry, I’ll do better fam! Leave them comments below if you’ve got league specific questions… 

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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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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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If we were all born geniuses we wouldn’t be drafting until this weekend for leagues that we pay into. Most of us are terribly impatient fantasy football players and for whatever reason need an extra week or two to stare at rosters that we can’t do anything with while top end wide receivers and running backs tear their ACLs making awkward cuts.  Julian Edelman, Spencer Ware, and Cameron Meredith are all players going anywhere from the early to middle rounds that have had their seasons ended before they even started and thousands of people have these players on their rosters because WE MUST DRAFT IN AUGUST BECAUSE AUGUST IS DRAFT MONTH.  MY FANTASY BASEBALL TEAM SUCKS AND I NEED A ROSTER TO LOOK FORWARD TO. Yeah, I’m the exact same way.  Whether it is due to an injury on the roster, a good preseason, or a player is just being overlooked, here are some players that are worth your picks and also some that aren’t worth your time based on recent changes in August.

Take me on in the Razzball Commenter Leagues for a chance at prizes! Free to join, leagues still open!

Also, check out Rudy’s exclusive DFS and season-long tools that are sure to help you be profitable this fantasy football season!

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Last night in the NFL Preseason was quite a doozy. After just a few series on offense for the New England Patriots, WR Julian Edelman came up limping and grabbing the back of his knee after a play. Just a few minutes later in the Kansas City game, RB Spencer Ware had to be carted off the field. In New England, the fear is that Edelman has a torn ACL, with a timetable uncertain at this point. In Kansas City, the fears aren’t quite as scary, as the idea is that Spencer Ware has avoided an ACL injury, with only a sprained knee or a PCL injury, with clarity coming in the coming days…

Take me on in the Razzball Commenter Leagues for a chance at prizes! Free to join, leagues still open!

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Hello everyone, and welcome to Razzball’s Fantasy Football 2017 Division Previews. On this piece, we’ll take a look at this year’s AFC East. In past offseasons, we’ve seen many versions of the same headline: “Watch Out Patriots, Dolphins/Bills/Jets Are The New Team To Beat”. And while we haven’t seen that storyline yet, this is a division that moved in the right direction as a whole. It’s good to see that just for football in general. There are a lot of fantasy storylines and scenarios to dive into, so let’s get right to it…

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Hello everyone, and welcome to the second post my mini-series on talking about each different position before the start of NFL Training Camps in a month and a half or so from now. Again, something to keep in mind, this is by no means a draft plan, or any sort of in-depth analysis about each position, as those articles will come out later in the summer during the camps themselves, but rather, a series of articles that can get the ball rolling towards the 2017 fantasy season.

I’ll be moving away from the structure of the”Players I Like and Players I Don’t Like”, and move towards an open discussion on my feelings about the position as a whole.

So enough chatter, let’s get right to it!

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playoffs

If you are reading this, congratulations. And I don’t say that just because you are fortunate enough to be reading one of my articles. If you are reading a fantasy football article in Week 14, it is likely because you are in the playoffs and still have a reason to care about your team and your lineup. So, congratulations. I mean it. To those of you who didn’t make the playoffs: see you in hell, candy boys! This is, unfortunately, the last Handcuff Report of the year. It has been a great ride, but we are wrapping things up as the fantasy playoffs begin!

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markingram

It’s Week 13, which means we are heading into the fantasy playoffs soon. I know that because my readership has dwindled the last two weeks, as many fantasy owners have been eliminated from the playoffs and are throwing in the towel. But that’s OKAY. That just means we can be more serious and a bit more intimate now. It’s just me and you, playoff hopefuls.

Heading into this week, Tim Hightower was a name to watch because Mark Ingram was still in the concussion protocol and was questionable to play. If Ingram couldn’t go, Hightower was going to be a high-end flex/RB2 to throw into lineups before they locked on Sunday. But word came out on Sunday morning that Ingram was going to play, so many likely left Hightower on the bench or on the waiver wire.

But something funny happened. It didn’t matter that Ingram played. Ingram and Hightower combined for three touchdowns and almost 300 yards, with Hightower accounting for 51 rushing yards, 54 receiving yards, and one of the touchdowns. Although, Hightower’s final stat line would look a bit different if not for the late 50-yard touchdown pass from wide receiver Willie Snead. If Hightower can keep producing even with a healthy Ingram, he can help out some of the needier fantasy owners come playoff time.

To the report…

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