Welcome to the start of 2018 NFL DFS season. You’re probably familiar with Donkeycorns, the wandering mythical creature who rewards your trust with a path through the desert, from the MLB Closer Report. In DFS A Donkey is someone that does foolish things. When it comes to daily fantasy, we’re all Donkeys sometimes. I’m your DFS Donkeycorn. Follow me through the fantasy desert.

Did you use Rudy’s Tools for the MLB season? You probably enjoyed success if you did. The biggest advantage a model gives you is its consistency. It doesn’t have biases. It won’t get mad at Julio Jones for not scoring touchdowns, despite the natural variability of NFL TD scoring. I recently asked Rudy how difficult it would be to start my own model. His response was, considering I have over 1,000 hours sunk into mine this off-season, not very. So get the 7-day free trial, pay for the season once that ends, and be glad Rudy exists to grind away at a projection system so you don’t have to. I’ll focus on the Sunday main slate using Fanduel pricing below.

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The Sausage Fest gets extra meaty this week as the boys are joined by numbers guru and co-founder of Razzball, Rudy Gamble. Listen in as Rudy regales B_Don and DT with tales of the creation of Razzball and then attempts to crush Donkey Teeth’s Tarik Cohen hopes and Kerryon Johnson dreams.

Of course the guys also had to grill Gamble regarding the fantasy outlook for all Da Bears offensive players in 2018. Other topics of conversation in this week’s show include the process of projecting football statistics, snake and auction draft strategy, Lamar Miller, Peyton Barber and much more.

Sign up for a free 7 day trial of Rudy’s incredible premium football tools here.

Follow everyone on this episode on Twitter @RudyGamble, @DitkaSausagePod, and @DonkeyTeeth87.

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Throughout August, I am going to be breaking down 2018 Fantasy Football drafts by round. Not to sound like captain obvious here, but the first round is the most important round. Back when I used to read Matthew Berry religiously, he would always emphasize that you can’t win a fantasy football league in the first round, but you can definitely lose it. The injury stuff is just dumb luck, so it’s hard to kick yourself if you drafted David Johnson last year. It was the right move. In leagues where I was picked first last year, I took David Johnson and I would do it again 100 times out of 100. Anyone can get hurt at any time.

Reid wrote a piece about the back end of the first round that you will enjoy as well.

I’m going to break down the first round in four sets of tiers. I’m going to use the 12 team format. We will have the 1-3, 4-6, 7-9, and 10-12 tiers. I’m simply going to tell you about the player that I like the most in this tier and why. Some of you aren’t going to agree and that is what the comment section is for. If you have checked out my rankings, most of this won’t be a surprise to you but it is a chance to go more in depth.

Be sure to check out my PPR and Standard Rankings if you haven’t already!

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I am back from my football blogging sabbatical and ready for the off season. I have no interest in this crumby Super Bowl, so I’m ready to dive right into the offseason. What better way to start than to review the 2017 season? There could have been stuff that you missed, you never know. Maybe something that you read in this will stick in your brain until your draft season in August. Will you remember which article you read it from? Probably not, It’s January.

I’m surprised you even clicked on this, you must be bored. What you will probably remember from my posts when your drafts roll around in August is my grotesque misunderstanding of English grammar. I’ll probably over use some commas, or not use enough commas. Do they teach 6th grade grammar at the local community college? Better yet, maybe you would prefer that I disperse of fantasy football knowledge through the use of emojis. That would be edgy, and no one has done it yet! (Simpsons did it!) Alright stop. I’m going to go through the quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends to let you know what stuck out to me this season. Today, let’s start with the quarterbacks and running backs.

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Now that my little Fantasy Football science experiment is over I’m going to change things up a little bit. You wouldn’t believe all the hate mail I got in the past couple of weeks. It seems my ESPN accounts have been locked out and someone even toilet papered my front yard. Enough is enough. Going forward I’m just going to give you my top six picks for the week. The only rule for a pick is that a player cannot be considered a stud to be eligible. Recommending Antonio Brown helps no one.

Before we get started let’s quickly see how I did last week…

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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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From a fantasy perspective, that was certainly one of the most wildest two weeks to open the NFL season! The 2017 NFL season started off with a bang as the Kansas City Chiefs went into New England and stunned the Patriots with a thrilling 42-27 victory that saw rookie running back Kareem Hunt score not one, not two, but three touchdowns and rack up 246 yards from scrimmage. Hunt followed up his marvelous debut with 109 total yards and 2TDs against the Eagles too!  Pour one out for the homie David Johnson, the consensus #1 overall draft pick, as he was unfortunately placed on IR with a dislocated wrist last week.

Since I’m sure MB from Razzball.com has all the major news of Week One and Two here, let’s dive into the main reason you clicked on this link; Razzball 2017 RCL updates on Fantrax!

Since the sample size is obviously very limited through only two weeks of football, don’t be too elated or discouraged if you see your squad throughout the rest of the article.  Below, you can see the Top 10 list of most combined fantasy points across all Razzball RCLs:

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Another week of the NFL season is in the books, and we have a few more developments at the running back position to keep an eye on. There are a few injuries hitting the wire this week, and out in Seattle, a youngster is outplaying some familiar names. Over in Philadelphia, the guy who is supposed to be the lead back barely saw the field…

Razzball Football’s partner FantasyDraft is starting a new sign-up promotion this week, all new depositing signups receive a free $4 “Everyone Wins” NFL GPP ticket for the upcoming Sunday slate along with offering all players 4% cash back on their initial deposits! 

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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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