Indiana Jones measuring the exact amount of sand needed in the sack to swap with the idol in Raiders of the Lost Ark, a Bb, C, Eb, and then bending that F twice on Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On”, or the “In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since.…” from The Great Gatsby: a great start cannot be underestimated. Since you are here, no, I am not trying to give you a tenth-grade literature lesson. Yes, I am applying this to fantasy football. However, if you have never read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, you should. It is the second greatest thing a Fitzgerald has done after only Larry Fitzgerald’s 64-yard touchdown reception in Super Bowl XLIII.

A great start out the gate can set the tone for your season. There are few worse things than trying to play catchup on a 1-3 record. One of the factors to take into account when setting any lineup are your player’s matchups. When I am looking at those matchups, I go a little deeper than is it a “good defense” or “bad defense.” Simply you could have a player facing a great defense against the run, but they may give up a bit more to the pass. So I like to take positional matchups into account a little more. Basically, what teams give up the most fantasy points to a single position. Over the next five weeks, I’ll be breaking down players and teams who have exploitable matchups to start the season. I’ll also go into some matchups I’d rather avoid.

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B_Don takes a look at Donkey Teeth’s QB rankings as DT tries to narrow down his rankings and tiers. DT doesn’t have Mahomes #1, well, that’s just crazy  talk, but he’ll try and make sense of it. DT’s love affair with speed has him taking Jalen Hurts at a position that may be uncomfortable (like the backseat of a VW?). Maybe B_Don can talk him down on the young Philly QB.

Why do the guys hate Dak Prescott? Where is it worth taking Aaron Rodgers if you’re forced to draft soon? Why is Baker Mayfield a starter? If you turned into a delicious pastry, would you eat yourself? These are the important questions that will help you find the right signal caller for your team. 

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The great part about predicting the future is you can be wrong 99% of the time and still be remembered forever. Right Nostradamus? But get one thing right and they’ll name comets and theories after you. Hopefully after this article, 2021 will be the year of the “EWB Dak Prescott Model of Fantasy Football.” That’s a tongue-twister. Maybe, “Damn the Darnolds!” Actually, I’m gonna start writing a spec script on that right now! 

ENYWHEY. I’m aiming this article for the dynasty players that probably want to shore up their QB position before going into what will undoubtedly be a nasty 2021 campaign for QBs. On the plus side, there are 12 pretty good quarterbacks ready for your 2021 teams. On the downside, it’s a complete catastrophe after that. On the other upside — which is a Soundgarden B-side FYI — quarterbacks have a stunning point parity so if you don’t draft a top QB you can just stream 3-4 QBs at will. 

Foremost, I’m looking at consistency, upside, and return on draft capital. The quarterback position is usually the highest scoring position on a week-t0-week basis for fantasy teams, but there’s also remarkable point parity within the second tier of QBs. (I said that above but the message never seems to get through). On a per-week basis, the second tier of QBs are separated by about 2 fantasy points per game. Your job as a fantasy manager is to try your hardest to get a top QB, and failing that, predict which QB will have consistently high outcomes and play matchups. So, let’s take a look at the QBs going into 2021. 

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I woke up this morning, ice rain falling on my car. Three different densities of fog developed from my exhaling breath: one the usual, everyday fog representing my life force; a second the worried fog that danced a little more, caused by 2020 itself; the third, the devastated fog of living in the northern midwest that fell straight to the ground, caused by having Kirk Cousins stuck as the Vikings quarterback for the next three years. 

But if I’m wearing my fantasy forecaster hat, I really should be dancing in the ice rain: Kirk Cousins is bringing some teams to fantasy playoff glory. 

That’s the funny thing about fantasy sports compared to real life sports: there are inadequate real-life signal callers who are fantasy gold, and there are great real life quarterbacks who are absolute sleepers in fantasy. The midwest writers for The Athletic point out that Cousins is rigid in following his reads — he doesn’t innovate and he doesn’t deviate from his play call. He’s won less than 10 games against teams with winning records in nearly 80 career starts. He went 0-9 on Monday Night Football before finally grabbing his first career win this year. From a real-life standpoint, Cousins is about as exciting as owning a Toyota Camry: yes, you know he’s ready to go every week, but once you start going, you can’t help but look at every other “car” you could have had. And yes, I did avoid the Derek Carr pun there. 

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I woke up the other morning with visions of Flacco in my head. I went to the bathroom and looked at myself in the mirror. “You’re a Super Bowl winning quarterback with millions in your bank account, not the backup QB on a winless team that’s tanking! Go get ’em tiger!” I put on my Pumas and raced outside, not quite realizing it’s 15 degrees when I stepped out the door. Still, I ran. I ran like Rocky ran, sweat-banded and sweat-shirted. And when I cross the mile threshold, I told myself, “It’s three weeks until the fantasy championships! All your friends will validate you! They’ll say you’re handsome and smart and five years from now they’ll remember that Kirk Cousins brought you the fantasy championships!” I looked around, slightly crazed and slightly lost, and realized I was far from home. But aren’t we all. With Joe Flacco on my mind, I started to retrace my steps, one-by-one. Russell Wilson started strong. James Robinson was a fluke FAAB win that brought me to the playoffs. Derrick Henry surged through the defenses while Ryan Tannehill sliced secondaries. And all the while, Corey Davis grabbed first down after first down. There were so many Titans I couldn’t figure out if I was talking “Attack on” or “Remembering the.” But one thing stuck with me: it was the fantasy friends I made along the way. If I made you a fantasy friend of mine or the site, please show some love by getting an ad-free membership or checking in on the basketball or baseball sides and following the fantasy fun all-year round. 

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Congratulations! If you’re reading this, I assume you made into your league’s playoff bracket. There’s not a lot of meat on the bone but hopefully you don’t need a ton of help from here on. However, if there are any holes to fill I might be able to help.

I group the adds by position and then within the position, rank them in order of preference. With the playoffs upon us, I have removed percentages of the FAAB. If you need any of these guys to start for your team, then spend what you need to spend. The sherpa will only advise players who are rostered in less than 50% of ESPN leagues.

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Well, well, well. Week 12. Do I need to introduce what ended up being one of the weirdest weeks in NFL history? From a fantasy perspective, we watched Patrick Mahomes chase the Chiefs’ record for single-game passing yards (held by Elvis Grbac, you Trivial Pursuit maniac), while also watching Denver Broncos practice squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton make his NFL debut as a QB. One of those situations did not end well. On top of all of that, we’re looking forward to Tuesday Wednesday Night Football. In case you forgot, when Tuesday Night Football that happened earlier in the year wreaked havoc on stats providers who hadn’t prepared for “Y2K,” and some fantasy providers went weeks without accurate scoring. And now we’ve got a WNF, which is also the name of my favorite Korean boy-band. SEW (<- not a boy band). I’m giving you the best information that’s available at the time of writing, and hopefully Week 13 will be a bit easier to navigate. Next week will be the final installment of the rest of season QB rankings, so if you’re hoping to follow me here at Razzball, I’ll ask you to navigate over to the basketball section, where I’ll be doing a weekly player highlight column. 

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The week 13 waiver wire continues the streak of slim pickings for late season help. It’s surprising that there has been so few notable adds for the playoff push. Most difference makers are already rostered and no major injuries opened up new featured starters.

I group the adds by position and then within the position, rank them in order of preference. The sherpa will only advise players who are rostered in less than 50% of ESPN leagues.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Who’s ready for Thanksgiving? Thanksgiving means three things: Matt Stafford, the turkey and contentious political commentary. Wait, what’s an Oxford comma again? OK, that was one thing. Hopefully you’ll be safe in your mansions this week. For the rest of us, let’s take a look at the thing keeping us hopeful: the upcoming fantasy playoffs and the quarterbacks that lead our teams through darkness. 

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The week 12 waiver wire is about the same as the last few weeks. Most difference makers are already rostered and no major injuries opened up new featured starters. There is no slam dunk FAAB add, however Michael Pittman comes close.

I group the adds by position and then within the position, rank them in order of preference. The sherpa will only advise players who are rostered in less than 50% of ESPN leagues.

Please, blog, may I have some more?