2020 Dynasty/Fantasy Week 5: Game Analysis: Saints 30, Chargers 27 OT
I take notes during the live watch. I re-watch the game on tape looking for hidden clues to report on. Here are my notes/takes on what I saw and how it related to FF 2020. I write anywhere from 1,000-3,000+ words on each game, and I have to move fast to get to all of them through the week…so, please forgive any typos/grammar.
I kept thinking, last night as the Chargers let a win get away…the Chargers are too good to be (1-4). AND, I also thought…thank God for Anthony Lynn coming through for my ‘under’ 7.5 win total bets in the preseason. My top two bets for over/under win totals…LAC under 7.5, NYG under 6.5 wins…it’s money right now. Now, I just need Houston to win 7 of their final 11 games to complete my ‘hat trick’ (not going to happen).
This is the Chargers in 2020… Better than the other team because of their QB, but Anthony Lynn is cursed – he finds ways to lose games like a Fantasy owner on a bad sit-start decision streak. Michael Badgley doinked the game-winning FG off the post…or everyone would be hailing Justin Herbert and burying Drew Brees today. Two OT losses this season for LAC. Four losses in-a-row, all games they were the better team and should’ve won.
I’m shouldn’t be counting my money yet on the Chargers ‘under’ 7.5 wins – they could easily win their next five in-a-row (JAX, at DEN, LV, at MIA, NYJ), but they have two tough road trips in there…the two toughest road trips in the NFL in COVID 2020. We are projecting LAC to 7-8 wins, so my bet is still up in the air. I should lose this bet with the early turn to Herbert, but my bet was a lot on Anthony Lynn (and his Tyrod), so as long as he is there…I like my chances.
The Saints have the opposite issue. They are (3-2), lucky not to be (1-4) right now and losers of 4 in-a-row. Drew Brees is fading away slowly, softly, but still good enough to take advantage of other team’s mistakes. This is by far the worst looking Saints team in years, as Brees is fading away and Michael Thomas is becoming a locker room cancer (and they have a few others too).
I don’t know where the Saints will end up in the end…division winner, wild card, Final Four…but I know they are not getting to or winning a Super Bowl with this team – which means this current group never will get there. It’s over. Good but not good enough the past several years, and also very unlucky. The clock is about to strike midnight on the Saints. The Panthers and Bucs are the future of the NFC South, and the future is now – had the Saints lost…the Panthers and Bucs would be ahead of them in the standings.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Everyone thought ‘Josh Kelley’ (11-29-0, 1-9-0/1) but the right answer to the ‘winner’ of the Austin Ekeler injury is Justin Jackson (15-71-0, 5-23-0/6). Jackson started and was clearly the better back here.
Jackson is the RB to own now until Ekeler’s return, but be wary of this depleted O-Line, and then JJax will be in that complementary role with Ekeler after. Huge blow to Kelley’s FF value here. You thought you had an RB1-2 on your hands after Weeks 1-2…now, he will be cut soon in redrafts, when/if Ekeler is back.
Kelley has run the ball 28 times for 79 yards (2.8 ypc) the past three games. How many of us got caught in rookie RB hysteria? Not just on Kelley, but overall?
Kelley has been dying since Week 3.
Antonio Gibson fading off.
James Robinson falling asleep.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire…fantasy semi-bust since Week 2.
Jonathan Taylor not getting the right touches on a bad offense.
Ke’Shawn Vaughn…why did anyone think he’d get past RoJo?
Zack Moss…not taking over for Singletary.
Cam Akers…3rd-best Rams RB?
Did I tell you or did I tell you (at CFM all summer) that the power of this 2020 Dynasty Rookie Draft was trading it away? Now look…you could acquire any of these RBs for a small or large discount off what they were going for in August or after Week 1. I wanted Bryan Edwards in the 2nd-round…and he’s available for half-price now too.
Some of these rookie RBs will be fine, but there’s always a rookie euphoria…and then the magical unicorn bubble bursts and they are just regular old RBs not as good as the backup RB in Carolina that the Bears just didn’t see any value in last year when they had him/cut him because magical unicorn rookie David Montgomery had a cool stat from PFF that proved how great he was.
The NFL gets sucked in…we all get sucked in by the rookies.
-- The rookie we all should’ve been sucked in by is Justin Herbert (20-34 for 264 yards, 4 TDs/0 INTs). I tried to get all of us in on him the past 2-3 weeks, as the price went higher and higher. Some of you got in, others couldn’t extract him. I was hoping he’d have a so-so MNF game to bring the heat down…ummm, no.
No sense shopping for him now, the price is maxed out. Just like with Chase Claypool, you missed your window. You have to wait impatiently to see if you’ll get another one.
I’ll keep saying it – he’s better than Joe Burrow. And I didn’t think that would be possibly in January-August. Nothing against Burrow, who is great as well.
Many FFM teams got radically upgraded the past few weeks with cheaper investments into Chase Claypool and Justin Herbert – you bought stars who will transform your redraft teams now and transform your Dynasty to come.
Some just sat and watched and thought there was still time.
Time’s up. You missed it.
You can’t get every player recommended, but my recommendations were pretty lofty and enthusiastic here. When you email me about how Tyler Higbee sucks, note I’m giving many ‘fixes’ ahead of time along the way at all positions. We can afford to drift/die at TE if we have a killer QB, stud WRs, stable/deep RBs, and great DST schedule streaming with great depth overall (Claypool and Herbert on most people’s benches this past week). Many FFM-based teams scuffled out of the gates and hopped on the right trains/waivers/deals Weeks 3-4-5 and are starting roll. That’s why I pleaded for no panic off a tough start – we often ‘feel’ are way through the early part of the season finding hidden gems before everyone else and they just need a minute to blossom. If you've been with me for years, you’ve been through the race like this many a-time. This is the time we shine…as we go. Let more hands of poker be dealt and we’ll be fine.
-- One of our top ‘buy lows’ of last week -- he was a late/midweek entry I proposed -- Hunter Henry (4-23-1/8). He ruined his ‘low’ part of the equation with a TD here. A few, not many, got him last week…and I think you’ll like it because things with Herbert are going to be good…and Henry chief among them.
In a world where the TE group is dying from star names collapsing and many one week wonders breaking your heart as you race in a week too late off their sweet game the week prior…Henry + Herbert works for me. You might have missed the window of good value to acquire in trade now. Wait a week and see if he doesn’t score a TD next week. With TEs, if you score a TD in a week…you’re a god among TE options now. There’s Kelce, Waller, and #3-12 TE1s for the week will be finding the ‘who will score a TD’ guy.
Jimmy Graham and Eric Ebron now are in play, somewhat coveted, sadly.
-- Speaking of things better with Herbert…Mike Williams (5-109-2/8) got active and just made himself a top waiver wire guy of the week in some leagues. Who thought he would even play this week?
I don’t know that this even happens if Keenan Allen (2-29-1/2) doesn’t get hurt. If Allen is down for just a week, I’m trying to buy low on Allen. If Allen is out long-term, then Mike Williams is going to work by attrition.
If Allen is fine…Williams is back in play, but I think at-risk of being a bit player with Herbert where Allen-Henry will shine more. I didn’t see the same relationship with Williams as I did Herbert-Allen. Williams got lost in coverage for the most wide-open TD (64 yards) of 2020…or this Williams stat line might have been very ‘meh’ with one TD and no hyper-enthusiasm. Now, because he got 100+ and 2 TDs on national TV…he’ll break the bank in waivers in many leagues this week.
I’m wary of Williams as being a B-C grade option (with Keenan healthy) that is now a temporary ‘A’ because ‘national TV/2 TDs’ just happened. Depending on Allen’s healthy/outlook…I might sell this Williams thing hot.
-- I sell immediately on Emmanuel Sanders (12-122-0/14). As soon as Michael Thomas is back, everything changes back. It’s like what will happen in Green Bay when Davante Adams returns.
Drop Tre’Quan Smith (2-8-0/3) and never speak his name again. I think Smith and Marquez Valdes-Scantling are the same person, in the same boat. Useless but pop up every 4-5-6 games with a TD and people get excited. Have moments when the star WR is out but are nothing when the star WR is in…even in a ‘good’ matchup.
Rookie Marquez Callaway (4-43-0/6) could move past Tre’Quan soon…but will also not matter for any FF consistency.
-- I drafted Jared Cook (2-52-1/3) to be my Tyler Higbee insurance in case what is now happening (him getting ignored/not following up on 2019) happened. But Cook is showing troubling signs as well. Just 3 targets here and thank the Lord one of them was for a long TD.
Cook is as good/bad as any non-Kelce/Waller TE but he’s also showing some troubling target trending. May be OK once Thomas is back.
-- The Saints-DST has been terrible and led by Marshon Lattimore (6 tackles) suddenly getting beat by all comers/not the lock down guy of the past. It may be that Lattimore is more hurt than he is letting on.
Whatever it is…there’s also a very tough schedule so far at play as well. After their Week 6 BYE the schedule eases up a bit. The Saints may get healthy and a schedule break all at the same time for Week 7.
-- The Chargers-DST looked great for about a half here and then couldn’t hold off the Saints offense from coming back. The Chargers play about two quarters of great defense and then start falling apart. It’s a very good unit and when they get Chris Harris back, things might fall into place.
Week 6 = BYE
Week 7 = JAC
Week 8 = at DEN
Week 9 = LV
Week 10 = at MIA
Week 11 = NYJ
You could use the LAC-DST from Week 7-11 with some or great confidence.
-- LAC LB Kyzir White (15 total tackles, 1 TFL) is on total fire in IDP since becoming a starter Week 2…10.8 tackles, 0.4 TFLs, 0.2 PDs per game for White since becoming a starter. Potentially going to lead the league in tackles despite barely playing Week 1.
Snap Counts of Interest:
65 = Guyton
55 = MK Williams
35 = KJ Hill
12 = Keenan Allen
05 = Tyron Johnson
42 = JJax
25 = JKelley
59 = Tre’Quan
52 = Callaway
45 = Emm Sanders
42 = J Cook
28 = J Hill
20 = Taysom Hill