As we turn the corner for the home stretch, just a reminder that we keep this going right up until the very end. We appreciate your patronage and hope that it has brought you some help and/or some enjoyment along the way.
This week’s article is written as I’m thinking a lot about sportsmanship. I hope that you are in a league where that is something your fellow owners honor all season. Everyone should be putting forth a best lineup, even in these final weeks as many teams have nothing but pride for which to play. There is nothing worse than owners giving it up and not paying attention until the final whistle sounds.
As we transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas, from fall sports like soccer and football to basketball, let’s all make it a point to keep sportsmanship in the forefront of all that we do. As you are watching youth sports and high school sports, be reminded that attending these events is not a license to act out, especially towards the referees. Too many times I’ve seen incidents where parents have lost the plot and end up venting their frustrations in an ugly manner. Incidents like yelling at a 14-year-old referee at a third grade girls soccer game, parents forming a mob at the end of a match and verbally assaulting the game officials with colorful language. Even next level stuff where players have physically assaulted opponents and referees at the end of games.
I’m nervous for basketball season, I really am. Games taking place in tight quarters inside, parents bunched up together after a frustrating day at work. Tinderbox. If we could all try to be that voice of reason, to be a calming influence when “the going gets tough,” be the one to nudge a fellow parent and ask them to reconsider their actions. It starts with one person and one action, and it can hopefully spread to make sporting events a more enjoyable place. More importantly, that’d be a great lesson to our kids.
On to this week’s wonders!
RB Darwin Thompson, Kansas City
The backs for Kansas City are dropping like flies, with Damien Williams and Darrel Williams both dealing with injuries that may affect their availability for this week’s tilt in New England. Thompson saw his first significant action of the year, and among his 11 carries was a 4-yard play that got him his first touchdown. LeSean McCoy is in the mix for Kansas City, but it is looking like Thompson is in line for a significant role against New England this week.
WR James Washington, Pittsburgh
Listed last week, Washington makes a repeat performance in the weekly story on the basis of yet another solid fantasy day for Pittsburgh. For the third week in the last four, he found the end zone while lighting up Cleveland for 111 yards on four catches. He and Devlin Hodges are on the same page, so look for Washington to continue to be a productive fantasy wideout for the rest of the season.
RB Raheem Mostert, San Francisco
The dynamics of the backfield for San Francisco has been ever changing, and it could be that Mostert is finally playing at 100 percent. He lit up Baltimore for 146 yards on the ground this past week, scoring a touchdown while also adding a couple of catches out of the backfield. The return of Matt Breida is coming, but it may not be for another week or two. San Francisco has a great matchup this week against New Orleans, where Mostert has positioned himself to get the bulk of the work.
WR Russell Gage, Atlanta
Julio Jones is inching closer back to returning, but in the meantime Gage has been making noise and deserves some play when he does return. He had another solid game, catching five passes for 52 yards and a score against New Orleans. The Carolina defense is next on tap for Atlanta, and we see Atlanta as being able to pass the ball early and often, making Gage an attractive play this week.
WR Anthony Miller, Chicago
Another wideout who continues to be hot is Anthony Miller in Chicago. Mitchell Trubisky has been productive the last several weeks, and one of his favorite targets over this recent stretch of games has been Miller. He has been at or just shy of double-digit targets in each of the last three games, and this week he feasted against Detroit to the tune of nine catches for 140 yards. Miller will be a productive fantasy player for the remainder of the season.