Saturday - Apr 20, 2019

Home / Commentary / Things Aren’t What They Seem in Week 3

Things Aren’t What They Seem in Week 3

I took some time this week to take a look at the schedule and go deeper than just raw numbers. It’s very important to not overlook who was responsible in creating that data. I am not talking about statisticians, but rather players specifically.

The rankings that are available to owners and projections are based on some of the most lopsided data. Think about the accountant that ENRON used to cook their books. He used plenty of numbers to make it look like everything was there at first glance.

While I am not suggesting that all numbers and projections are frauds, there are some that lend themselves to speculation. Eddie Lacy
is out for approximately four weeks.

Here’s the data I’m looking at for weeks 3-6.


James Starks


– RB Green Bay Packers

Starks flashed some serious speed and power last week. I was even wondering if he was a good add? I’m always up for a guy who can run for 100-plus yards and a score, and then grab four receptions for almost 40 yards.

The problem with the equation here is that the Packers are still a pass heavy offense. Combine that with the sloppy tackling that I saw from the ‘Skins and you probably aren’t going to get that kind of production
ever again.

This is the same guy who couldn’t beat out DuJuan Harris that we are talking about. Ok, so you still think he’s a good add? Let’s examine the next four games for the Packers and that should give us enough data to make a good decision.

Week 3 Bengals

These guys locked the Bears down to 2.5 yards per carry in Week 1. Forte is a much better runner and receiver than Starks. Nothing to see here.

Week 4  BYE

Week 5 Lions

Allowed 3.87 ypc against the Cardinals in Week 2. In Week 1 against an elite runner in
Adrian Peterson
they allowed
5.2 yards per carry. You could look at the stats and say this matchup could be worthwhile. I strongly disagree as Starks is nowhere near the talent of Peterson. They allowed one touchdown in Week 1 and two in Week 2. The stat sheet evens out at 4.43 yards per carry allowed and 1.5 td’s a game. This is very misleading.

Week 6 Ravens 

Gave up 3.19 yards per carry to the Broncos in Week 1. Managed to hold the Browns to 58 yards in Week 2 on 18 carries. We are talking
Trent Richardson

here. There is nothing to see here.

Analysis:

While the Redskins defense can make any back look like a great add, I’m suggesting that you steer clear of Starks. He has zero value unless
Eddie Lacy

misses more than four weeks. That’s a big gamble to me.

One could say that Lacy is starting to look like a fragile commodity. People were saying that when he was drafted. I believe the Packers thought that as well as evidenced by the drafting of Johnathan Franklin. I haven’t personally liked owning a Green Bay running back, well, frankly ever.


Ryan Grant

was the last back that flashed in my mind as a legitimate fantasy back for the Packers. That was quite a while back. I saw some explosiveness from DuJuan Harris and believed that he would have a role. I don’t see any value in Starks as a fill-in for the next four weeks. If you were absolutely desperate in Week 5, you could try the home run derby play. Meaning if Starks doesn’t score you aren’t getting much. It’s all or nothing on home run derby. I lean towards nothing.

I see more value in Cardinals’ third down back, Andre Ellington
.
Rashard Mendenhall

is what I like to call a yesterday. Yesterday’s memory of Mendy is better than the reality of his play today. He has a band-aid next to his name due to the number of injuries he’s sustained.

I think when the opportunity presents itself that Ellington will be ready. He has so much value as a receiver that he may be a three-down back.

At 5’9″ and 199 lbs he has the build to run with power. His draft stock slipped when he ran 4.61 at the combine, but I assure you that he is much faster than that. Take a good long look at this kid.

He’s got some serious skills in the ground game, in pass protection, and as a receiver. You can see the value of a solid pass protector. The Broncos’ depth chart is upside down because one of the backs is the best at protecting Peyton Manning
. He coincidentally is getting most of the opportunities because of those skills.

Final Thought

If you own a running back like Ahmad Bradshaw
, you need to make a move. If you thought he was going to be the next big thing in Indianapolis, you just got news to the contrary. I assure you that
James Starks

is a poor add unless
Eddie Lacy

misses extended time. I don’t believe that to be the case. I think the schedule shows you that Starks has a tough road ahead of him. So if you have stars in your eyes like the 182,000 and change that picked him up(according to NFL.com), expect that you might be looking at 50 yards a week in a pass first offense. You are now playing home run derby. Pray for a score. I’ll take a pass on Starks because I know what kind of performance you get.

Questions/Comments/Concerns to michaelfsarmento@gmail.com, or follow me on Twitter @AudibleFantasy. Michael Sarmento is a proud member of the Fantasy Sharks Team and Fantasy Sports Writers Association.

About Fantasy Sharks

FantasySharks.com began in 2003, disseminating fantasy football content on the web for free. It is, or has been, home to some of the most talented and best known fantasy writers on the planet. Owned and operated by Tony Holm (5 time Fantasy Sports Writer Association Hall-of-Fame nominee,) Tony started writing fantasy content in 1993 for the only three fantasy football web sites in existence at the time.