There are a lot of fantasy football experts and pundits that can help you with your team. The fantasy football community is about more than that. The Tampa Bay at Miami game has been canceled week one and moved to Week 11. Hurricane Irma is a monster and is blasting through the Caribbean as a category 5 storm as I write this.
Foremost in all our thoughts and prayers are the people and communities that may be in its path. We all saw the devastation that Harvey brought and hope that others are spared that. Life is a precious thing.
I assure you that you are not alone. There are millions o fantasy football players that drafted in the bottom half of their draft and took Mike Evans in the 1st round. There are even millions more that drafted Jay Ajayi early in the second round. It was a sound strategy! My experience in drafting fantasy football teams has taught me that you go after studs the first four or five rounds then you work on filling out your roster with the best positional guys available. If you can draft studs AND fill out your roster? Well, then you have more flexibility in the later rounds to take a flyer on potential. (Like a David Johnson or Todd Gurley a couple of years ago) So by grabbing Evans and Ajayi at the top of the draft you got your number one receiver and running back. Great job. Until mother nature showed her ugly side.
What does the canceling of the Tampa Bay at Miami game mean to your fantasy team?
Well in addition to Evans and Ajayi, lots of rosters lose access to Jameis Winston, Davante Parker, Jarvis Landry, Jacquizz Rodgers, DeSean Jackson….I could go on. The bottom line is you’ve got to work around this week one bye. Hopefully, you drafted well and have solid back-ups that can minimize the impact of these players going off the board. Here are some things to think about.
Week one has literally become the Buccaneers and the Dolphins bye week. If you drafted well then you can insert your backups and hope they go off Week One. This is especially true if you are in deeper 12 or 14 team leagues where there may not be much left on the waiver wire. In smaller leagues, if you drafted players specifically to offset the Week 11 byes you should take a hard look at them. These may be players that you should drop and pick up others in week one that have better match ups.
Let’s say you stashed a suspended Willie Snead from the New Orleans Saints because he had a good match up against the Washington Redskins secondary at home in Week 11. Now you’ll have Mike Evans available. You can comfortably drop Snead and target a Paul Richardson or Tyler Locket playing against Green Bay. Or Adam Thielen may be available, his match up with the Saints in week one is also very favorable.
Running backs are more difficult to find on waivers in Week One. No one new has had the opportunity to break out yet. You may have to reach a little for a 3rd down specialist like a Duke Johnson Jr. of the Cleveland Browns or a C.J. Prosise of the Seahawks. Change of pace backs such as the Eagles’ Wendell Smallwood or the Raiders’ DeAndre Washington may be on your waiver wire. It’s difficult to say which game but any of the Patriot running backs could help also.
What if Jameis Winston was your starter?
A lot of people stream quarterbacks anyway. If you have never streamed this might be your opportunity to try it. Carson Palmer and Sam Bradford are both candidates to go undrafted. Palmer has a terrific matchup against Detroit. Sam Bradford of the Vikings doesn’t get a lot of love in fantasy circles but may be involved in a bit of a shootout against New Orleans. You may even look at underdog quarterbacks like Blake Bortles or Alex Smith. They will have to throw the ball to stay in the game.
Remember that earlier I said that Week One will serve as the Buccaneers and Dolphins bye week? That means that players from both those teams will play 16 weeks straight. That’s a lot of wear and tear in the NFL and bodies tend to break down. This could be an opportunity for you.
Let me give you an example. I am a Mike Evans fan and although it will pain me, I may try and trade him after week four. That’s when the bye weeks start and you may be able to get good value out of him and the other players on those teams from a panicked owner. Especially one that didn’t do his research and needs help that week. New Orleans and Atlanta are both on bye week five. There are similar trade opportunities you can target other weeks. The worst that can happen is that your trade is declined and you keep an Evans or Ajayi or whoever you shopped. You decide and do what’s best for your fantasy team. Take your shot and win your league.