Saturday - Apr 20, 2019

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Couch Tomatoes – Week 10

I feel like I am cartwheeling in space, watching a myriad of colors splashing around me. There is soothing jazz mixed with a lively African folk song being sung by children in the distance. I’m thinking about how great it is experiencing the year 2115.

Instead of watching sports events and reality shows like we have now, with help from great scientists like LeBron James III and Josh Gordon IV, in 2115 entertainment has evolved to a level where we can lie on a floating cool air packet and just relax. With the sounds and video mixes of our choice blasting from the Turbowhizzer on our necks, implanted just under the left ear, we just mellow out. No violence, no arousal and most certainly no competition. We have evolved. Life is good.

Suddenly I felt the ice cold Dr. Pepper running down my leg. I woke up fast. Bonnie was chasing Toby with a broom. Note that I did not say “on a broom.” Ouch! She hit me too. It was clear that I was back in 2015.

Toby was running around shouting that the fans had renewed him and I must say I was surprised, not so much that readers voted to keep him, but that a rabbit could shout. Four fans actually voted to keep the little cotton-tailed nuisance and there were no ban him to the garden votes at all. I know it was on the up and up because Toby brought me the mail right from the mailbox himself every day for the last week. This is Chicago. Who would ever mess with an election? .

I have teams that are so hopeless that I have been making 4-5 waiver moves a week on all of them and I feel like a fisherman in a leaking, sinking boat. I bail out two buckets of water as the boat takes in another barrel full. The pain subsides as I think about what I am going to do next year. Obviously, taking studs with high draft picks does not work (Luck, Charles, Lacy, C.J. Anderson, Morris, J. Nelson, Cobb, Jeffery, Watkins, Hilton and more). Next year it will definitely be Plan B, whatever that works out to be.

It would almost be funny if it wasn’t so dreadful. Yet, one does have to marvel at the way all the negatives affect people. Some just quit and I will never do that. At the very least, maybe I can screw up other guys’ playoff aspirations.

I still have some weird luck each and every week. With the pain of that Flacco last play INT costing me a big game in one of two dynasty leagues a couple weeks ago still lingering, my other dynasty team lost by a 139-136 score last week, causing my team to stumble out of a first place tie. The winning margin was the TD pass that Jay Cutler threw to lead my favorite Bears to a big come from behind win, after they had lost two games in a row by last second FGs.

When we follow fantasy football we tend to focus on our teams and kind of ignore the big picture. I am trying to be your eyes and ears to take you into and behind the numbers, not only for the current week, but for the season to date as a whole. As usual, there was a lot to see from the couch last week…

The least stingy teams at giving up fantasy points are the Raiders, Saints and Lions. The Raiders and Saints have the offensive firepower to play some very competitive games. Unfortunately, the Lions offense has been terrible.

To nobody’s surprise, the best fantasy scoring defenses are the Seahawks, Broncos and the Rams. If any of these teams could get their offenses in gear, they could become dominant based on their superior defensive strength.

The top 5 scoring QBs on a FPPG basis are Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Cam Newton, Philip Rivers and Andy Dalton. Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck have all been down on their luck, especially Luck. Sorry—I couldn’t resist.

The leaders in passing yards/game through Week 9 are three QBs that seemingly have been around forever—Drew Brees (345.4), Tom Brady (338.6) and Philip Rivers (337.0).

Tom Brady (22) and Carson Palmer (20) are still tied at the top of the TD pass leader board.

Who would have thought that Peyton Manning (13) and Andrew Luck (12) would be leading all QBs in INTs at the midway point of the season?

QBs being sacked the most are still Russell Wilson (31) Alex Smith (28) and Colin Kaepernick (28).

At first glance, with winning the game and getting good stats it appeared that Andrew Luck got the best of the Denver defense. Upon further review, he has a lacerated kidney and other injuries that will keep him on the bench for 2-6 weeks.

As we have seen especially the last two weeks, the Broncos give up the least FPPG to QBs with a 14.0 point average. The Rams have improved to 16 FPPG given up to QBs and play an improving Bears team Sunday that could be missing both Forte and Jeffery. It will be interesting to see how Cutler deals with his new found self-confidence.

On the other hand, QBs are anxious to play the Ravens who give up 26 FPPG and the Saints who yield 28 FPPG.

After deleting the injured Jamaal Charles, Arian Foster, Le’Veon Bell and now Dion Lewis from consideration and adding back a not as badly injured as first thought, Matt Forte, in adjusting our list, the top 5 fantasy scoring RBs are Devonta Freeman, Todd Gurley, Chris Ivory, Mark Ingram and Matt Forte.

The leader by far in rushing yards/game is Todd Gurley (110.7) followed far behind by Adrian Peterson (94.8).

Pass receiving RB leaders after nine weeks are Devonta Freeman (48) and Danny Woodhead (45).

We finally had some movement in the TD scoring race, which has stalled out the last couple of weeks. Devonta Freeman now leads the field with 11 TDs and TE Tyler Eifert with a strong effort of 3 TDs last week, has closed the gap with 9 TDs.

The stingiest team in giving up RB fantasy points is still the Jets, who are at 16 FPPG and the Seahawks a tad behind them with 17 FPPG.

Neither the Chargers (30), nor the Cowboys (31) can stop the run. That inability to get their opponents offense off the field is a big disadvantage that their offenses have not been able to overcome all season long.

The top 5 fantasy scoring WRs after Week 9 are Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, DeAndre Hopkins, Odell Beckham and Larry Fitzgerald.

In overall pass receptions, the leading WRs are Julio Jones (80) followed by Antonio Brown (68). Keep hoping that Jones is able to avoid the annual injury jinx that has kept him off the field for 25% of the games in his career.

Leading the WR FPPG race after Week 9 are Julio Jones (114.3) and Antonio Brown (111.3).

The Seahawks and Broncos defenses are tough on opponents WRs, yielding only 21 and 24 FPPG, respectively.

WRs light the scoreboard when they play the worst two defenses in FPPG given up—the Chiefs (47 FPPG) and the Ravens (46 FPPG).

At the midway mark of the season, there are still three undefeated teams. At 8-0 we have Cincinnati, New England and Carolina.

Be sure to remember that the answers to our fantasy football questions can usually be found within the numbers of the game. And if all else fails ask me or Toby. You can reach us at mnease23@yahoo.com. All fantasy football questions are welcome.

About Mike Nease

Mike Nease is a member of the FSWA and has been playing the game since 1985, while also writing about it since 2001. Over the years he has sampled about all the playing scenarios that fantasy football offers, including re-drafter, keeper, dynasty, auction, IDP and salary cap leagues. He and his wife Bonnie reside in West Chicago, IL You can contact Mike at mnease23@yahoo.com anytime and during the football season follow him @mikeinsights.