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KEEPING AHEAD: The Midseason MJ Awards!

Welcome to the midseason! For many fantasy leagues we are about half-way through the regular season already, and while it’s been a hot mess, we’ve made it nonetheless. I didn’t mean for that to rhyme. I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it.

But what does half-way through the season mean? It’s the MJ’s!!!!! That glorious time of the year where expensive and sought-after hardware is given out to the most (and sometimes, least) deserving fantasy players throughout the 2020 season so far. So without further ado, let’s see who’s been nominated and who won a statue of me so far!

The Peyton Hillis Award for Best Waiver Wire Pickup

Nominees: James Robinson, Travis Fulgham, Chase Claypool, Myles Gaskin

Winner: James Robinson

Depending on the size of your league, there may be a ton of potential answers to this, but generally, these three weren’t drafted and have gone on to become incredible boons to your team so far in 2020. While Gaskin, Fulgham and Claypool have certainly become the splashiest and most fun to watch thus far, the answer has to be James Robinson. Think about where we were collectively just a couple months ago: Leonard Fournette was the incumbent, no-doubt starter. If you happened to be concerned about Fournette’s health, Ryquell Armstead was the handcuff. If somehow you played in a super-deep dynasty league, maybe you considered Devine Ozigbo. Oh and let’s not forget that offensive coordinator Jay Gruden also brought in former favorite Chris Thompson to catch passes out of the backfield as well.

Now, as we sit in late October, Fournette is in Tampa, Ozigbo and Armstead have yet to see the field, and James Robinson has probably single-handedly won you weeks, vaulted himself into the weekly top-12 running backs in the league for fantasy, and looks to be a solid, if not excellent, keeper in the coming years. Yeah, this one was a landslide.

The Ty Johnson Award for Worst Waiver Wire Pickup

Nominees: Parris Campbell, Daniel Jones, Van Jefferson, Nyheim Hines

Winner: Nyheim Hines

All of these players were set to potentially break out for your respective teams early in the season. We can excuse Parris Campbell given his injury, but the Daniel Jones and Van Jefferson were hyped as potential every-week starters for some and have been nothing short of atrocious (Jones) or nonexistent (Jefferson) to this point.

But the winner, hands down, has to be Hines. After week one, Hines looked to be the Austin Ekeler for Philip Rivers in Indianapolis, catching 8 of 8 targets for 45 yards and a score. This was then compounded by the fact that Marlon Mack, the presumed starter for the beginning of the season went down with an injury that would take him out for the entire year and FAAB budgets went flying out the vaults for Hines.

How’s that worked out for y’all?

The Adrian Peterson Award for Player Who Isn’t Quite Dead Yet

Nominees: Adrian Peterson, Julio Jones, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Rob Gronkowski

Winner: Julio Jones

Lots of big names here! While it seems brutal to not give the award to the person it’s named after, I have to give Julio the nod here simply on reputation. If you owned Julio this year, you know what I mean. After a blistering start to the year, Julio injured his hamstring and was mostly ineffective for two straight weeks before sitting out entirely in week five. This caused most in the community to completely throw in the towel on him. Seriously. In my 16-team PPR league I actually entertained trade offers for Julio that sounded a lot like this: “he’s too old” or “he’s always injured” or “Falcons offense is a mess” or “Calvin Ridley is the best player on that team.”

Stop. Julio is Julio and he just beasted on all of you. He ain’t dead yet.

The Randy Moss Award for Most Unbelievable Rookie WR

Nominees: Laviska Shenault, Justin Jefferson, Chase Claypool, CeeDee Lamb, Henry Ruggs, Tee Higgins

Winner: Justin Jefferson

This HUGE category is here merely to alert you all to the fact that this class is bonkers. Like, absolutely, without a doubt, bonkers, And keep in mind, I didn’t list Jerry Jeudy, Jalen Reagor, and a handful of others that still may go on to contribute big things in the coming years.

But Jefferson has been miraculous by nearly any metric you can think of. Go look at his stats so far. Go check out his year-to-date PFF ranking (I’ll save you the Google Search, it’s #1). Dude has been insane. A no doubt winner in a loaded category.

The Donte Moncrief Award for Most Infuriating WR That I Swear Never To Own Again

Nominees: Mike Evans, John Brown, Julian Edelman, Cooper Kupp, T.Y. Hilton, Mecole Hardman

Winner: All of Them

You all get a statue. It is shaped like a big donut for the zero you gave me the one week I trusted you. And it’s filled with toothpaste. You’re welcome.

Read on for this weeks Hits, Holds and Folds..

About MJ Brown

MJ Brown has been an avid fantasy football keeper league enthusiast and player for over a decade. A member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, MJ delivers weekly content on multiple platforms, bringing a combination of advice, humor, and tips to keep your team at the top of your league.