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 Post subject: Handcuffs, Going Forward
PostPosted: Wed 10.24.2012, 21:53 
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Whale Shark
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For the last few weeks, a number of starting RBs have gone down and their backups have usurped them. DeMarco Murray, MJD, and Donald Brown come to mind, to name a few. Needless to say, I've watched as several teams in my league have faced impossible situations as they struggle to fill in holes with a dead-last waiver priority, and it makes me consider my own team's future.

Going forward, if your starters are both studs (assuming you start 2 RBs and don't have a flex position), could handcuffs be all the depth you need? For example, say I have Ray Rice and Ryan Mathews as my starters. But I also have Donald Brown and Vick Ballard. Once I'm passed the byes, would it make sense to replace Brown and Ballard with Jackie Battle and Bernard Pierce (or if you have Turner, Jaquizz Rodgers, etc) and charge through the home stretch depending on a team's running scheme? Or is it better to diversify and keep someone like Brown (or Alex Green, Dwyer, etc), even if it means rostering backs on teams that lack a strong running game, for the sake of trades or tempting matchup plays?

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PostPosted: Wed 10.24.2012, 22:06 
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I always err on the side of talent and I tend to like to diversify with other players who have starter potential that won't need an injury to get work. "Handcuffs" are strictly reliant on an injury to get a decent workload. I tend to not handcuff my starters unless there is a clear and talented backup who would get an unquestioned starter workload. More often than not... coaches will go with a committee or hot hand situation if their starting RB goes down.

If your starter has a clear and talented handcuff then go for it. I don't think it's worthwhile to carry the likes of Jackie Battle on your fantasy teams unless you are in a deeper league.


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PostPosted: Wed 10.24.2012, 22:28 
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I have Ben Tate and Kendal Hunter as handcuffs for my studs in a couple leagues. Ive had them the entire year though.....probably should have had them rostered already if you own Gore or Foster


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PostPosted: Wed 10.24.2012, 23:16 
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This is an excellent topic and one that doesn't have a clear-cut answer as far as I know. Sometimes I want to have insurance, and other times I'm willing to chance it.

For example, in my PPR league I have McFadden and Matthews. I have Mike Goodson, but I don't have Battle.

The difficulty is that handcuffs, while serving as much-needed injury insurance, also suck up important roster space, and leaves an owner inflexible during bye weeks.

If someone drops their handcuff to pick up a replacement defense, then there's the chance that another owner will pickup the handcuff and then use that handcuff the next week in multi-player trades.

Other times, you drop the handcuff and are fortunate to pick him back up the next week.


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 05:43 
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ChummyShark wrote:
This is an excellent topic and one that doesn't have a clear-cut answer as far as I know. Sometimes I want to have insurance, and other times I'm willing to chance it.

For example, in my PPR league I have McFadden and Matthews. I have Mike Goodson, but I don't have Battle.

The difficulty is that handcuffs, while serving as much-needed injury insurance, also suck up important roster space, and leaves an owner inflexible during bye weeks.

If someone drops their handcuff to pick up a replacement defense, then there's the chance that another owner will pickup the handcuff and then use that handcuff the next week in multi-player trades.

Other times, you drop the handcuff and are fortunate to pick him back up the next week.


I know what you mean. I have Rice and Mathews and carried around Battle for a bit just in case, but not Bernard Peirce. I dropped Battle during byes, but will probably pick him up again after. Certain RBs like Mathews, McFadden, Gore, Bradshaw, etc, seem more volatile than others, and I suppose buying insurance for them is (sometimes) worth the roster spot. But I agree that too much insurance easts up your bench space real quick.

Another way I like to look at it, is if I have a stud RB post-byes, having a quality handcuff on the bench essentially guarantees continuous production from that RB slot, even if the #1 goes down. Thus, if they do go down, you needn't rely on WW priorities/competition or lesser RBs like Brown, Green, or even SJax. In that situation, I find the latter make for great trade fodder.

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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 05:53 
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I'm only interested in a "handcuff" if I think that guy is going to be a solid producer if the starter goes down. Not all handcuffs are worth rostering.

Jackson and Spiller have something going on, I'd like Rodgers if Turner went down, I'd want Tate behind Foster, I like Jennings with MJD out, I'd like Turbin if Lynch were out, Bush without Forte, and a few more. Really though, when I'm looking at the Steelers, Colts, Cardinals, Chiefs, Raiders, etc. I'm not interested past the starter.

If you have guys with talented backups(Pierce looks solid), I'd rather own them than another backup, but I wouldn't choose a lesser talent (Battle sucks) over gambling on a higher upside guy.


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 08:43 
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pinksheets wrote:
I'm only interested in a "handcuff" if I think that guy is going to be a solid producer if the starter goes down. Not all handcuffs are worth rostering.

Jackson and Spiller have something going on, I'd like Rodgers if Turner went down, I'd want Tate behind Foster, I like Jennings with MJD out, I'd like Turbin if Lynch were out, Bush without Forte, and a few more. Really though, when I'm looking at the Steelers, Colts, Cardinals, Chiefs, Raiders, etc. I'm not interested past the starter.

If you have guys with talented backups(Pierce looks solid), I'd rather own them than another backup, but I wouldn't choose a lesser talent (Battle sucks) over gambling on a higher upside guy.


I agree with all of this... with maybe the exception of Goodson. I think he is definitely worth the roster spot to cuff McFadden. Goodson looks explosive this year and I think he would impress if DMac misses time. We've at least had a glimpse of him being the primary ballcarrier from a few years ago in Carolina. Fumbling problem, but the dude can eat up some yards. I think Taiwan Jones would spell him a bit, but I'd guess that Goodson would get the large majority of the work. I've rostered him in one league even thought I don't even have McFadden. That OAK rushing schedule is enticing.


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 10:47 
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I even like getting the other owner's handcuff and packaging them together in a trade.

For example, in week 2 or 3 I packaged handcuff Robert Turbin and Sidney Rice to the owner of Marshawn Lynch for Denarius Moore.

That's a win-win trade. He gets insurance and I get an upgrade at WR. =D>


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 11:16 
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Like other posters have said, I find myself more inclined to handcuff certain RBs than others. I look at the RB's talent, the surrounding talent and the schedule to determine who I need to handcuff. I currently start McFadden and Mathews and would very much like to own Goodson, but have no interest in Battle. If something happens in San Diego, I see nothing of value happening. Battle doesn't have the talent to be a reliable fantasy starter. But if Goodson gets pressed into service, I believe the combination of his talent and the Oakland schedule will help him be a low RB2.

I'd prefer to have Goodson over a guy like Ballard or Dwyer, but I'd take the current opportunity for Ballard/Dwyer over Battle.

I put in my best bid for Jennings this week because he has the talent and the schedule is ok, but I'm not as excited as some others because of the lack of talent around him. Jacksonville wasn't a productive offense wiht MJD. Am I to believe Jennings will suddenly score a bunch of TDs?

But two out of three ain't bad. I just think expectations need to be tempered.


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 12:33 
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As a Charles, Mathews, Martin, Leshoure and now Jennings owner I'm only looking at backing up Charles and Martin.

They're the only ones with a clear back up that'll get majority of the snaps.

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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 12:49 
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Thoughts on Bryce Brown in Philly?

He gets a handfull of touches (running and receiving) each game and has clearly surpassed Dion Lewis as the primary backup to McCoy.


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 13:16 
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The whole point of having the handcuff to your RB1 is to insure that should something happen to said RB1 you will have an immediate replacement already rostered. If you have Jennings and MJD goes down you have obviously lost a stud, but your line up is still intact,albeit lessened. If instead you have Kendall Hunter then you are taking a much bigger hit. Now let's say in the same scenario it is Gore who went down. You have MJD and Hunter, 2 great options, but your line up can only support playing one of those guys anyway, so in truth you have not improved yourself that much. Having the correct hand cuff helps you avoid the disaster of losing a key part of your line up.

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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 14:06 
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Tacks652 wrote:
pinksheets wrote:
I'm only interested in a "handcuff" if I think that guy is going to be a solid producer if the starter goes down. Not all handcuffs are worth rostering.

Jackson and Spiller have something going on, I'd like Rodgers if Turner went down, I'd want Tate behind Foster, I like Jennings with MJD out, I'd like Turbin if Lynch were out, Bush without Forte, and a few more. Really though, when I'm looking at the Steelers, Colts, Cardinals, Chiefs, Raiders, etc. I'm not interested past the starter.

If you have guys with talented backups(Pierce looks solid), I'd rather own them than another backup, but I wouldn't choose a lesser talent (Battle sucks) over gambling on a higher upside guy.


I agree with all of this... with maybe the exception of Goodson. I think he is definitely worth the roster spot to cuff McFadden. Goodson looks explosive this year and I think he would impress if DMac misses time. We've at least had a glimpse of him being the primary ballcarrier from a few years ago in Carolina. Fumbling problem, but the dude can eat up some yards. I think Taiwan Jones would spell him a bit, but I'd guess that Goodson would get the large majority of the work. I've rostered him in one league even thought I don't even have McFadden. That OAK rushing schedule is enticing.


Goodson isn't a handcuff, he's a worn out twist-tie. Unless it's a league that rewards fumbles and being benched.

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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 17:21 
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pwbowen wrote:
Tacks652 wrote:
pinksheets wrote:
I'm only interested in a "handcuff" if I think that guy is going to be a solid producer if the starter goes down. Not all handcuffs are worth rostering.

Jackson and Spiller have something going on, I'd like Rodgers if Turner went down, I'd want Tate behind Foster, I like Jennings with MJD out, I'd like Turbin if Lynch were out, Bush without Forte, and a few more. Really though, when I'm looking at the Steelers, Colts, Cardinals, Chiefs, Raiders, etc. I'm not interested past the starter.

If you have guys with talented backups(Pierce looks solid), I'd rather own them than another backup, but I wouldn't choose a lesser talent (Battle sucks) over gambling on a higher upside guy.


I agree with all of this... with maybe the exception of Goodson. I think he is definitely worth the roster spot to cuff McFadden. Goodson looks explosive this year and I think he would impress if DMac misses time. We've at least had a glimpse of him being the primary ballcarrier from a few years ago in Carolina. Fumbling problem, but the dude can eat up some yards. I think Taiwan Jones would spell him a bit, but I'd guess that Goodson would get the large majority of the work. I've rostered him in one league even thought I don't even have McFadden. That OAK rushing schedule is enticing.


Goodson isn't a handcuff, he's a worn out twist-tie. Unless it's a league that rewards fumbles and being benched.


:lol: Not a fan it sounds like? Fair enough. Besides the fumbling.... what are your other criticisms? Not seeing any upside there if DMac goes down?


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PostPosted: Thu 10.25.2012, 18:18 
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i think if your team is QB heavy, then any ol handcuff will do

just thought about this in the shower this morning

:D


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