Every Week 1 of the new NFL season provides a lot of fireworks, crazy games, insane finishes, and, unfortunately, a ton of injuries. Injuries are a part of the game, and this past week was no exception. A bunch of very important players went down across the league this past weekend with a slew of different injuries, and many will miss time. As a result, backups and third-string players will be launched into starting and backup positions and will have an opportunity to become fantasy relevant in the coming weeks.

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Another year, another Absolutely FAABulous back at cha! I’m your host, Phil B. ready to help you make the best, cost-effective additions using your Free Agent Acquisition Budget (Though I also like Free Agent Auction Bidding), or FAAB. FAAB allows every player a chance to get any free agent every week (as long as you have the cash) and that’s why it’s the best. If you read my Auction Draft Primer you know I like using fake money for fantasy football and FAAB is more of the same. 

I did A Zero Week primer back in ‘17 (it feels much longer ago if an apostrophe is used) and you can read that here. I’ll try not to re-hash too much of that, so to quickly sum it up, it works like so: After the draft, every team is given a certain dollar amount (for our purposes that is going to be $100) and then, after each week, each team can bid any amount (up to $100) for any unowned players.When your team wins a player, then your budget is reduced by that cost. So you win a guy for $7; now you have $93 to spend the rest of the season. However all leagues are different and let’s say your league gives $250 FAAB. If so, just multiply the values here by 2.5. If you need further assistance, just drop a line in the comments as to the quirks of your league.

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Well that was one hell of a ride. My Bills had Houston right where we wanted them. And Nathan Peterman just… just… just did Nathan Peterman things and threw a pick-6. I really shouldn’t have been surprised when it happened. He has to have done that at least 2847 times by now in his 396 day career. Before I go on a long tirade about how bad Josh Allen looked before he got hurt, let’s just take care of this game in its’ entirety.

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I’m going to take this moment to point out that the Rams and Chiefs are putting up bonkers-level offensive stats by throwing early and often, aggressively utilizing #AirRaid principles to get big plays on any down. It’s beautiful to watch. Meanwhile, the Raiders have committed $100 million guaranteed to a coach who laments the death of the fullback and is publically willing to talk about how he enjoys watching Wisconsin smash-mouth football (I’m not kidding – “I sit down and watch Wisconsin, and I feel like I’m breathing fresh air again”). Jared Goff and Patrick Mahomes are shattering records and he wants to watch Wisconsin pound some 220 pound Ron Dayne wannabee up the middle for 4 yards a carry, 40 times a game.

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Last year, all my loyal readers wept tears of unfathomable sadness when baseball ended, as that meant the end of the greatest weekly column in the history of the Internet. Thankfully, Razzball has decided this year that they do not want to disappoint everyone out there who make up my loyal fan base, so they have asked me to write a weekly football picks column. Here’s the important stuff – I will be focusing on FanDuel cash picks. That’s not to say that you couldn’t take my advice and use it for other sites, but each DFS site has its own salary structure, so a good play on one site isn’t necessarily a good play on another site. So if you only play somewhere else besides FanDuel, be very careful with these picks as they’re based specifically on the salaries on FanDuel. Further, the bulk of these picks are for cash games. I will make GPP recommendations wherever I feel it’s reasonable to do so, but if you’re only a GPP player, then while this column will still be useful, just know that it’s a cash-first article. Finally, I will be making occasional references to Rudy’s projections, which you should purchase, because they are quite good. That’s not me shamelessly plugging them – that’s me speaking the truth – they’re quite good and quite helpful for anyone who plays NFL DFS. So with that in mind, onto the picks…

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Week 1 was packed full of surprises, just like usual. I’ve been saying that weird things happen in September and it’s no cause for overreaction. At the same time, certain things become more clear and so do the roles of the players that we drafted. We find out which wide receivers young quarterbacks tend to target more. We also get an idea of what the work load is going to be for certain backfields when it was unclear before. Everything changes from week to week but we put in the work and research to make sure that we are as accurate as possible here at Razzball. Let’s get to a few highlighted players for week to before you view the rankings in full.

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With Training Camp about to be in full-swing, it’s a perfect opportunity to take a look at some key players that are entering their final year of a contract, looking to prove themselves to their team or multiple teams if they’re likely to hit free agency.

Contract negotiations and holdouts are as typical to fantasy owners as touchdowns and RBBC’s, so let’s take a look at some names you should keep in the back of your mind as you approach draft day.

Let’s get into it!

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We are here today to point out the differences between the Razzball Rankings (which finished Top-3 in 2016) and those that ESPN has released to the masses. Haha, just kidding. You know, it used to be that Matthew Berry, Tristan Cockraft (lovely human being, totally serious. Met him at the LABR party down in Arizona Spring Training, probably one of the nicest guys in the industry along with Eno Sarris), and Eric Karabell submitted their rankings for the Accuracy Challenge that our friends over at FantasyPros host… After both Berry finishing in the lower 80’s back in 2015 and then Karabell finishing in the same area-ish (“ish” because I can’t remember exactly ) last season, they have yet to be seen this season putting their rankings to the test. So while I used to be able to compare our rankings to what the “industry” had made “standard” (parenthesis for sarcasm I suppose), the first thing you’ll notice with our yearly “Rankings Versus” series is that there won’t be any Matthew Berry. Whether that’s ultimately a good or bad thing, I’ll let you decide. Because, hey, I’m just that kind of guy. But don’t worry! Instead, we’ll be taking a look at how our “industry” leading rankings stack against the ECR (Expert Consensus Rankings), and last season’s top “Accuracy Expert” (no sarcasm), Dalton Del Don from Yahoo! (do I have to yell it every time? Geez, that gets old real fast…) Sports, not to be confused with “Yoohoo! Sports”, which I do all the time. Then again, I usually confuse most things with chocolate drinks. Totally normal.

So be sure to check out our 2017 Fantasy Football Rankings, Auction Values, and our very own Cheat Sheet for any context you may need. I’d say that context needs more chocolate drink to be honest…

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The Draft podcast that was recorded live during our draft can be listened to after the jump, which was again hosted by former ESPN Producer PodVader. Come to think of it, he not only hosts this league year-after-year, but he also special hosts for the actual podcast! Two birds! One stone! You know how the saying goes… (Hint: if you’re a bird, you’re f*cked.) And with this expert draft in the books a season after I took the championship (blind squirrel, nuts, I like your nuts joke, etc.), it’s time to write about said draft in a self-deprecating manner that will captivate all of my first dates (and not so coincidentally, my last dates) to no end. So first, let’s introduce the players… (and if you’d like to check out the team that pulled it off in 2016, you can grab your context here. But grab lightly! Think juggling with jazz hands…)

ESPN’s former Producer PodVader, (Jay Soderberg) from Next Fan Up and BlogTalkRadioDFSR‘s Doug Norrie, Mat Harrison from LeagueSafe (use promo code: RAZZBALL for $10.00 League credit!), “d-Rx®” (yes, that’s his name, no, he’s not a T-Rex with a silent ‘T’, unfortunately) from Pyromaniac, Matt Freedman from FantasyLabs and RotoViz RadioPro Football Weekly‘s Kyle Nabors, Joel Henard from Fantasy Insiders, Chris Schubert from FanRag SportsBrandon Marianne Lee from Her Fantasy FootballDale from Eat-Sleep-FantasyMatt Chatham from Football by Football, Kevin from The Fantasy Football Guys, Todd from The Fantasy Sharks, and Jay from Razzball (hey, that’s me!) And now? The recap!

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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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