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THE FIRE SALE: Week 8 Going Up and Coming Down

We’re halfway through the season already. We’re halfway through the season and the Browns have no wins…again.

I have good news though Browns fans. The team is going to draft a quarterback this year. Well, maybe. Depends if they can work a trade and get a bunch of draft picks.

I’m not big on fans jumping teams. I think most of us have a story about how we became a fan of a certain team. However, I’m giving all Browns fans permission to get out. No human being deserves to go through all that pain and suffering.

The Browns passed on both Carson Wentz and Deshaun Watson. It’s early but these two guys don’t just look like they’ll be good, they look like they’re going to be special. The Browns passed on both.

I don’t want to hear about Myles Garrett either. Listen, the Texans already had Myles Garrett. Actually, they had two of him. They had J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney. Houston wasn’t a serious Super Bowl contender without a quarterback. Garrett is great but if your genius scouting department is passing on TWO special quarterback prospects, they need to go back to teaching economics or whatever it is they were doing before they started scouting football players.

Every team misses on players and makes bad draft picks. That’s part of the process but to pass on Wentz and Watson in back-to-back years is unforgivable. When people in Buffalo are laughing at you, it’s time for a change Browns fans.

You can follow my crazy ramblings and fantasy observations on Twitter @ThePigskinGuy. I never sleep and I respond to every tweet. Hit me up with fantasy questions or just to tell me I’m a remarkable human being.

Now, on with The Fire Sale

Going Up

Rex Burkhead, RB Patriots

Burkhead may never have fantasy value this year but he’s a guy I’d monitor closely.

Dion Lewis has been fine but unspectacular over the last couple of weeks. Mike Gillislee has scored one touchdown since Week 1. James White is entrenched as the pass catching back. Add it all up and it equals nothing special.

One thing about Bill Belichick is he likes to get that running game cranking by playoff time if possible. Burkhead isn’t going to be a 20-carry a game guy but on the other hand I can see him getting more opportunities in the coming weeks.

I had Burkhead as one of my sleepers but he hasn’t done much because of a rib injury. He doesn’t have much fantasy value right now but I like to point out players to keep an eye on. I’d watch the Patriots backfield closely. If I had to bet $1, I’d bet that Belichick isn’t happy. Changes could be coming soon.

Amari Cooper, WR Raiders

I have one piece of advice for Cooper owners…

If you’ve never seen Caddyshack, that means trade Cooper. You should also punch yourself in the face as hard as you can.

Demarcus Robinson, WR Chiefs

Robinson is a player I liked in college at Florida. Now he’s getting a chance to play with all the injuries the Chiefs have at the receiver position.

Robinson caught 5-of-8 targets for 69 yards in Thursday night’s loss to the Raiders. It’s by far the most targets Robinson has seen in his two seasons with the Chiefs. He’s been forced into a bigger role over the last two weeks because Chris Conley was lost for the season. Robinson has played well though. He only caught one pass against the Steelers but Robinson was targeted five times. Alex Smith missed Robinson when he was wide open for an easy touchdown.

Robinson is clearly behind Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce for targets but Albert Wilson is a JAG. He’ll have some opportunities to make plays on a high-scoring offense. Robinson is a name to monitor in deeper leagues.

Ted Ginn Jr., WR Saints

Last week I said this about Ginn:

Stop me if you heard this before: Ted Ginn had a big game. Ginn has big games. That’s what Ted Ginn does. I’d advise not overreacting to it. Why? I’ll give you a few reasons. Michael Thomas, Willie Snead, Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara. Overreacting to a big game from Ginn is like overreacting to a big game from Coby Fleener. Sorry, not interested.

Now Ginn has had two big games in a row. I guess you can overreact now. You can also tell me to go to hell.

O.J. Howard, TE Buccaneers

Howard is a tough call because there’s no question he’s going to be an elite tight end. The only question is if it’s going to come this year or next.

Howard showed flashes of what fantasy owners can expect from him on Sunday by catching all six targets for 98 yards and two touchdowns. The other thing about Howard is he must be the best route runner in the history of football. Going back to his days at Alabama, I’ve never seen a guy get that wide open so many times in my life. Howard is routinely open by 20 yards. It’s amazing.

Howard has Top-5 talent. The issue is old Fire Sale hero Cameron Brate. While Brate isn’t nearly as talented as Howard, he’s still around to steal targets away, especially in the red zone. Brate ranks first among tight ends in red zone targets and second in touchdowns through the first seven weeks. It’s tough to trust Howard as an every-week starter when Brate is getting that many looks in the red zone.

I don’t mind adding Howard if you need help at tight end because he’s so talented, I just wouldn’t overspend on him. Brate is still too much of a factor right now. Next year though, go all in on Howard. You can only keep his kind of talent down for so long. Unless you’re Mike Mularkey. Then you find a way to give Derrick Henry 10 carries a game.

About Thomas Casale

Thomas began playing fantasy football back when owners had to mail in their starting lineups and work out trades over the phone. He started writing The Fire Sale in 1998. Since then his articles have appeared on numerous web sites sites including Fantasy Sharks, USA Today and SI.com.