Fantasy Football

NCAAB: VCU SET TO RECOUP ATS LOSSES FOR BETTORS

Tuesday, 16 December, 2014

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VCU came into the 2014 campaign as an Atlantic 10 top rated team and one that has caught the eyes of several top college basketball analysts. I, myself had them ranked as a potential sleeper for a run in March. I still do. One of the things that people need to realize is just how much things can change for November until March. UConn showcased this as the most current example. Just a few weeks before the March Madness tournament they were defeated resoundingly by Louisville.

A team can grow in a quick matter. All that matters come March is seeding and the path of teams they face to get there.

For current ATS bettors, you’ve been extremely unsatisfied with VCU. They have only won two games ATS, one against Oregon and the other against Tennessee. Overall that makes them 2-6 ATS. The reason for this has been three keys in my eyes.

1. Their pressure havoc defense has been halted by poor back line defense. Teams are zipping the ball past the first wave and finding easy strides to the hoop for layups. This has been accomplished thanks to the teams they have faced having above average backcourts. That won’t last the entire season and Shaka Smart will amend his havoc defense a bit.

2. VCU’s offense at times can be stagnant. Half court execution has been better over their last few games. On the bench freshman Terry Larier and Justin Tillman are getting more and more comfortable offensively—this has to translate to the Rams havoc defense. Also sophomores JeQuan Lewis and Doug Brooks showed last year they’re capable of rising to the occasion—they just need to be more consistent.

3. Free Throw Shooting– This is VCU’s main culprit in their woes. They’ve always been a poor free throw shooting team. Against Northern Iowa though it was the difference in VCU gaining a win. Treveon Graham went 6 for 6 from the line and the team as a whole shot the ball better than Northern Iowa from the free throw line.

4. Leadership–This team has Treveon Graham, junior Melvin Johnson, Mo Allie-Cox,Jordan Burgess and defensive specialist Briante Weber. They’ve played on teams that were represented by VCU players that went to the Elite 8 a few seasons ago. They showed last year in quick stretches this team can turn a close game into a blowout.

Post Week Thirteen Waiver Wire Adds

Wednesday, 3 December, 2014

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Fantasy football playoffs are officially here. Some season’s are done and others are on playoff bye weeks. For the teams that are seeded this week you really need to concentrate on puzzling your team together week by week. If you’re on a bye week it’s not time to feel all cozy and neglect possible adds to your team. Here are a few names that did well during Thanksgiving week in the NFL.

Mark Sanchez
Sanchez has erased doubts temporarily for the ongoing conclusion of the 2014 NFL season. His lease for fantasy football owners needs to be just that. I’m not sold on him as a top 12 fantasy quarterback in 2015, but for now his play warrants an add for fantasy football owners.

Ryan Fitzpatrick
Fitzpatrick is the quarterback with fifteen lives over the last decade. I’ve profiled him enough to not go into detail here but he keeps making the most of his extra chances. The rhythm he was in Sunday was a top five to ten quarterback performance of the season. Six touchdown passes only cements that statement further.

Daniel Herron
At first Trent Richardson’s struggles were laughable now it’s just a sad downward spiral. Herron has been a special teams player in the NFL and now he is the one taking carries away from Richardson. Herron had a fumble a few weeks ago but seems to be the scatback the Colts need.

Cole Beasley
I’m not sure what is going on with Terrance Williams but he has put up dud performances for well over a month. Jason Witten has always been a main cog in the offense along with Dez, but it looks like Cole Beasley is starting to trickle past Williams.

Others: Kenny Stills, Jonas Gray, and Jarvis Landry

WAIVER WIRE: POST WEEK TWELVE ADDS

Wednesday, 26 November, 2014

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A lot can change in a week’s time in fantasy football. Announcements have been made for quarterback changes with the Jets and Redskins. How about over in New England where coveted back Jonas Gray has suddenly faded into obsolete once again. All due to him being late for practice.

Here are some names to focus on to bolster your fantasy football rosters. Have a great Thanksgiving with your families and good luck in week thirteen.

Colt McCoy
McCoy delivered one of the better performances from a backup quarterback this season against the Cowboys. There is no denying that the Redskins offense is fantasy friendly. Cousins and RG3 have had their moments even though they’ve played below average for the most part. McCoy will go in to this with the mindset he has nothing to lose. That could result in some key games from McCoy.

Mark Sanchez
In deep, deep leagues you may want to take a look at Sanchez. He is obviously turnover prone but has shown enough in three starts to warrant a fantasy backup quarterback position. He is keeping the offense fluid and crisp and has delivered solid yardage outputs in all three starts.

LaTavius Murray
Murray’s ceiling is limited but he had one of the best runs of the season and it was nationally televised. There will be owners that want to see what else he can offer going forward. Take your chance as the Raiders backfield is the oldest in football. They may look to Murray as a sign for the future.

LeGarrette Blount
Blount’s game against the Lions will likely be his best game of the season. He just can’t be counted on for close to 80 yards at this point in his career. But the value he has for touchdowns is exponential. A big back on a New England team that is scoring at a high rate.

Toby Gerhart
The Jaguars offense has been far from pretty but a bright spot has been the backfield. DeNard Robinson had a solid five week stretch for fantasy owners and Storm Johnson had a brief window of fantasy output as well. This was all caused by Gerhart struggling with injuries most of the season. He has been brought back and involved slowly but I did notice a regained burst in his limited carries against the Colts.

Daniel Herron
Herron did fumble once in his twelve carries against the Jaguars. But with Trent Richardson’s struggles and Bradshaw out, the Colts have no choice but to rely on Herron to keep the defense honest.

Miles Austin
With Josh Gordon back in the fold the Browns will be looking to get the football to their stud receiver. That means more three wide receiver sets to get the defensive secondary a bit off balance. Austin is a savvy veteran that may be a shell of himself but he is still capable of snaring the football.

Tim Wright
The August trade with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally showed signs of paying off in Sunday’s win over the Lions. Rob Gronkowski has ascended himself over the last month as being back in shape and a premier tight end once again. With focus shifting back on Gronkowski it is allowing the Patriots to open up the middle of the field like they use to with Aaron Hernandez.

Louis Murphy
Mike Evans may be gobbling up all the touchdowns but there have been plenty of balls heading Murphy’s way too. The offense is void of a rushing attack and therefore they are having to allow on their big play receivers. Murphy has been an underrated third wide receiver in the NFL in stints throughout the league.

Kenny Stills
Anytime you get eight catches in the Saints offense you’re an automatic waiver wire pickup. Stills had a few key games as a rookie when injuries plagued the Saints. Now with Brandin Cooks out he has a chance once again to thrive in one of the most pass heavy offenses in the league.

FANTASY FOOTBALL: POST WEEK ELEVEN WAIVER WIRE ADDS

Wednesday, 19 November, 2014

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Black Friday and Thanksgiving are just a week away. That means fantasy playoffs are ever-so-close. Prepare yourself for that last stretch by reviewing possible player adds following week eleven’s games.

Andy Dalton
People love to hate Dalton but he is still a young quarterback in this league. Other quarterbacks have struggled at stretches of season’s and not taken as much ridicule as Dalton. With AJ Green and him connecting at a high rate it automatically catapults Dalton to a second tier fantasy QB (12th-17th).

Jonas Gray
Gray’s outing on Sunday night football speaks for itself. Now fantasy owners have to play the bidding war with fellow league mates or hope they have the first waiver wire priority.

Jerrick McKinnon
There are plenty of fantasy leagues where owners anticipated AP coming back and dropped McKinnon in advance. That has backfired as AP has been suspended. This is a premium position to go ahead and grab McKinnon as he has been an advanced PPR running back and a consistent all-purpose yards back.

Isiah Cromwell
The Browns decision to cut Ben Tate cements the new load Cromwell has been receiving. Cromwell and West have paired to be a solid backfield. With the cloud of Tate gone, Cromwell can be a solid fantasy contributor the remainder of the season.

Stephfan Taylor
It’s clear that Andre Ellington has been playing at less than 100% all season. The speed he possessed last season just isn’t there, which is probably due to the foot injury he suffered in preseason. Taylor returned last week against the Lions in a limited role, but don’t be shocked to see his carries climb up to the levels we saw before his injury.

Kenny Britt
Britt may be a one week wonder but his past stats as a Titan make him a worthwhile boom/bust addition to team’s struggling at wide receiver. His big play came early and proved to be all the separation the Rams needed to defeat the Broncos.

POST WEEK TEN WAIVER WIRE

Wednesday, 12 November, 2014

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Fantasy playoffs are just weeks away. Just because you may have clinched a playoff berth does not mean you can rest on your laurels. Managing a team for possible upgrades should never stop being a constant battle for you. Here are some additions after week ten’s on-field NFL performances that could help bolster your roster.

Joe Flacco
Chances are Flacco may be available in your fantasy leagues. If so and you feel that you’ll need a possible option in the coming weeks, grab Flacco now. He is one of the more hot/cold quarterbacks in football. I see his cold streak ending here shortly and Flacco rising back up in the fantasy quarterback rankings.

Terrence West
Cleveland hadn’t shown any fantasy football value at the running back position almost the entire season. That changed Thursday night as West stole the show. Owners that had West before are likely punching themselves right now for not having the patience to stick with him. Cincinnati’s pour run defense attributed to West’s great night, but his amount of carries are what should be intriguing to suitors.

Bryce Brown
Brown may have had one of the worst turnovers Sunday as he fumbled as he was getting close to Kansas City’s goal line. It started the turn around of misfortune for the Bills collapse in that game. Brown though did showcase some of the skills he had in Philadelphia a year ago. It’s a crowded backfield with Brown, Dixon, and Fred Jackson but one that should see each be a part of the game plan.

Damien Williams
Lamar Miller’s nagging injuries are obviously taking a toll on his reps. Williams has seen a rise in production and could continue to do so. Miller owner’s that have been depending on his fantasy production may want to protect themselves during this final stretch of the season.

Carlos Hyde
Hyde has already teased us a few times this season with fantasy touchdowns. At some point the 49ers are going to realize they need to dictate the offense running the football with Frank Gore and Hyde. That creates the comfort Kaepernick needs to sling the football down the field and move the offense secondarily via the pass. If they make this adjustment week in and week out than Hyde is worth picking up again.

CJ Anderson
Anderson was one of those backs people had an eye on well over a month ago when Montee Ball went down. Ronnie Hillman had shown that he would be the main back over the last month and Anderson showed very little upside. Suddenly a third down screen and awful poor tackling by the Raiders led to Anderson’s fantasy outbreak. Usually a guy that produces a breakout game on a Peyton Manning team continues to shine. Anderson should as well.

Jordan Matthews
Matthews makes a back to back entrance into the waiver wire pickup column. Surprisingly, he was not picked up as much as I thought he would during last week’s round of waiver wire acquisitions. There is no doubt after Monday night’s performance he will no longer be sitting unclaimed.

VIDEO: ATS YTD REVIEW

Sunday, 9 November, 2014

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Zack goes over his ATS percentages in college football and the NFL this season. To sign up for daily or weekly packages click here for today’s picks.

Sports Handicapping NFL Week 10 from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.