Daily Dr. Roto—December 24, 2018
Prescription Notes for Championship Week
— Colts WR TY Hilton once again proved why he is a late second round pick in Fantasy leagues as long as Andrew Luck is the QB. The Giants could not contain him, and after Eric Ebron went down with an injury, the Colts “no name” receiving corps stepped up to help pull out a tough comeback victory.
— Even though Packers QB Aaron Rodgers basically won the Jets game by himself, there is good news for Jets fans moving forward. WR Robby Anderson asserted himself as a legitimate WR1, and Elijah McGuire showed the Jets enough that I would expect Bilal Powell to be playing elsewhere in 2019.
— If the Houston Texans want to make a deep run in the playoffs, they have to learn how to cover tight ends. Eagles TE Zach Ertz had 12 receptions (on 16 targets) for 110 yards and two TDs. I had my doubts as to whether Ertz was worthy of a third-round pick in Fantasy drafts, but I don’t anymore. So long as he stays healthy, that’s a perfect place to take him.
— The Bears won again in San Francisco, but their play calling befuddles me. How is it that RB Tarik Cohen only had one target in the entire game after being such a weapon over the past month? Good teams use their star players effectively while the Bears seem to take an “everyone chips in” approach. If they lose in the playoffs, don’t be surprised if it’s because of their lack of a go-to guy.
— For those of you who waited until the last minute for Todd Gurley information know that I would have done the exact same thing. The Rams were coy with how they were handling Gurley, but to leave your best player on the bench in the Fantasy Championship could have been a catastrophic error. I would hate for a league to have been won or lost by C.J. Ander-puke. It just doesn’t seem fair that someone can pick up a guy in Week 16 and win a Fantasy Championship that way.
— The Steelers/Saints games was fantastic to watch, but I think the Steelers blew a chance to win the game in the early 4th quarter. The Steelers tried running the ball to take some time off the clock after throwing it so effectively for most of the game. Playing not to lose instead of trying to end the game cost the Steelers the win—and possibly a playoff spot. BTW I take back my comments about WR Antonio Brown. He showed himself to be a first-round pick Fantasy today, although I think he will be going in the early second round in many drafts next season.
— Dare I say that I am excited to watch the Cleveland Browns in the coming years. QB Baker Mayfield is a future star (and bona fide QB1 in Fantasy leagues), and RB Nick Chubb might have worked his way into late first-round draft status in 2019. I think I would also keep the coaching staff intact; it’s obvious that the players are responding to them and they deserve another chance to see if they can keep improving on what they started.
— If Patriots RB Sony Michel learns how to be a better pass catcher out of the backfield in 2019, he is going to be a star in this league.
— I am as shocked as anyone that the Cowboys laid an egg in Week 16 for their Fantasy owners. Amari Cooper only had six points in a PPR league, and Zeke Elliott had less than 20 points. I know the Cowboys won, but they are advancing based on their defense and not their offensive schemes. I think Dallas would benefit from a coaching change, which won’t happen if they make a deep run in the playoffs.
— No player gets more out of his skill set than Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey. I love watching him play and only hope that I can draft him in as many leagues as possible next season.
— Dolphins HC Adam Gase secured his fate with the loss at home against the Jaguars. Gase has made awful player personnel decisions and alienated his most talented players. He was also a nightmare for Fantasy owners who could never trust his play calling. Miami has a myriad of problems to fix but getting rid of Gase will be a start in the right direction.
— Were you as shocked as I to see Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph dominate the game against the Lions? Where had he been all season? Rudolph has always had the skills, but Cousins never seemed to look his way most of the year. I think that Fantasy owners took him too early in 2018, but he might end up being a potential late-round sleeper if he can continue this level of play in 2019.
— As much as I like the Chiefs, I think if they played the Seahawks ten times, they would lose almost 80% of the time. Seattle loves to run the ball, and Chris Carson rammed the ball down the Chiefs defense’s throat all game long. Add some timely throws from Russell Wilson to Doug Baldwin, and Tyler Lockett and Seattle looked dangerous. Speaking of Baldwin, I think he goes back to being a third-round pick in next year’s Fantasy draft. He was dealing with a knee injury all season long but looking at tonight’s game shows that when he is healthy, he is a WR1 receiver.
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