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8:33pmET: The Week 17 schedule change effect by the NFL...
The NFL changed some game times and dropped the Sunday Night game to get them all in 1pmET or 4:25pmET...so no team had an advantage/no game would be meaningless...
-- ATL and SEA both play at 4:25pmET...the two wild card combatants for spot #6.
-- BUF-BAL-LAC-TEN all go 4:25pmET...the combatants for the #5 and 6 wild cards
-- ATL-CAR and NO-TB at 4:25pmET...to settle the NFC South
-- LAR-SF at 4:25pm to help figure seeding among the NFC top teams
-- Basically, all meaningless games except CHI-MIN at 1pmET. MIN winning makes them the #2 seed, but doesn't mean NO-CAR have any less to play for at 4:25pmET
Nine games at 4:25pm...and 8 of them have at least one team with purpose.
Going to make a weird Week 17 injury/inactives to figure out your starting lineups on Sunday.
1:43pmET: Celebrating a title secured today? Have a tale of woe? Feel free to let me know...especially the titles. I love reading about what worked to get you to the finals, and then hopefully won it...or how it was lost. The short end of the stick people seems to be mostly folks getting Gurley'd...like a couple year's ago when people got "Jamaal'd".
Feel free to send me a note, if no one else in your Christmas gathering cares or understands...good or bad at = email@example.com
The big game from Gurley, and the 'change' that's happened to Gurley the past 3 weeks...it makes me wonder -- what if I had my David Johnson this season (tear slowly rolls down cheek)?
The lesson from fantasy 2017...injuries are becoming more pervasive within the fantasy events. Depth is so very critical. Winging with one QB and one TE and no real effort at a plan B/2nd option from the draft in 12-team, redrafts or others...I've said that's a mistake, now I insist that's a mistake. WRs and RBs popped up all over. QBs and TEs dry up fast. Putting more value on DST and PK has been the right call as well, and continues into 2018.
A lot of us that snuck into the back door for the FF playoffs and wandered to the title game -- Justin Tucker got hot normal after Weeks 3-4/Greg Zuerlein was hot most of the year...Jags, Steelers, Chargers DSTs ahead of everyone else...Evan Engram the 2nd TE you grabbed 'just in case'. We had the edge in the lesser-concerned positions...if only we didn't take on so many critical injuries before the season barely got started.
The road map will be similar in 2018...just, let's try to stay healthy this year!!
12:49pmET: Special Christmas Bonus Reading Material Posted (home page, scroll down and you'll see the title).
A re-publish of a very special series (5,500+ words) I did this summer, one you need to read before you hit the roads this holiday. Enjoy.
12:19pmET: Random Notes from stories I'm seeing, hearing post Week 16:
-- I think it is 50/50 that Christian Hackenberg starts Week 17. I think the Jets are tempted just to get everyone off their back about it...but I also think the GM knows he's going to get embarrassed if/when the Hack is a 'hack'.
If the 'Hack' starts, I'd like to be all-in on the Patriots DST but they have nothing to play for.
-- Coaching rumors and notes: I was not fully aware...did you know Hue Jackson reports directly to the owner now, not the new (awful) GM? The Browns could not be any more screwed up if they tried.
Jim Caldwell may have just played his way put of a job, and since I think Bill Belichick is on his last year...the Lions GM ties back to the Patriots, and he will try to grab Matt Patricia or Josh McDaniel. If the Pats group is staying put for one more year...Caldwell will stay another year. he's basically a placeholder for Patrica or McDaniel.
The biggest name I'm watching, for me, for fantasy...the maybe next 'best hope' HC is Eagles QB coach John DeFilippo...Mr. DeFilippo, PLEASE GO TO CHICAGO!!!
I think Jason Garrett has coached himself out of a job, for my personal assessment, but I don't think Jerry Jones will change a thing and Garrett deserves to stay given Dallas has been mostly good for two years. Personally, I think he's done the worst job of any head coach on a team with 5 or more wins. I mean, he coached his team to losses and I'll expand on that in days/weeks ahead. Pete Carroll is my other candidate for that 'worst' honor but he just went to Dallas and beat Garrett.
-- I'm hearing the Big Ben-Todd Haley relationship is about in the trash. Big Ben doesn't want to speak to Haley, and they have the QB coach acting as a go-between.
You thought your workplace was strange, the NFL is not immune to petty stuff that happens in any corporation...
It's Ben's last year...I'd set 80% odds on that.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Enjoy Kwanzaa, Happy Rusev Day...whatever it is you are celebrating Monday!
It has been the most bizarre season of fantasy and football in my about decade long time studying this closely. Never had a worse record overall across client teams and FFM subscribers, but oddly they all made close to the same amount of playoffs as usual...and an inordinate amount as wild-cards, but an inordinate amount of wild-cards then made it to the finals...but then it's been a pretty bad Week 16 finals run. Many got Todd Gurley'd, and those with Jared Goff vs. Gurley traded points at a deficit. Once Evan Engram went down it started slipping away. Those that used Dak or Keenum typically got roughed up as well.
So many highs and lows (and injuries) this season, but I think I'll remember this season more fondly more than bitterly -- despite the dark depression I'm in after the Sunday games closed and all the title game losses.
After 3-5-8, etc., weeks into the season, I didn't expect as many teams to make it this far. Story after story I've heard the same from you. It's a dark day losing a title game, but in a few days I hope I'll re-remember two things: (1) I/we were lucky to get to this point...not in the generic 'lucky' sense, but we didn't deserve to be here with the wimpy regular season we had. We played with house money at a certain point. (2) You're damn right we deserved to be here. Screw that luck stuff. Do you know how many changes we had to make this season? Go look back at your transactions for the season...just go look at the names and all the switches, adds, drops, trades. My transaction rates were up 35%+ from normal for a season. I got teams to the finish line with Samaje Perine, Jared Goff, Mike Davis, Robby Anderson, Keelan Cole, etc., and somehow swung them into a date with the finals with teams that had Gurley-Kamara, etc. How did I even get this far...hard work, persistence, extra study, risk taking.
It's my worst season ever in a decade, and probably the one I'm the proudest of.
But I probably won't realize that for a few days, weeks...maybe months/years.
Who cares...it's the holiday season!
Fantasy Football gave us all a gift for 4 months...we had to tinker, maneuver, debate, strategize, and agonize every day/week more than any season. A great drama...an intense puzzle...a meaty bone to chew on for weeks on end. What better way to play a game than to play it intensely and feel all the range of emotions for several months.
So, let's at least enjoy Monday with our families, exchanging gifts and memories...wait, what...there's two games tomorrow afternoon and I can still win some titles if the Steelers defense has a great day and maybe a few others if Nick Foles has a good night? Well, then...let's get Christmas over with quick, make those memories ASAP and then settle in for lot's of food and football the second-half of the day as the Lord must have desired or he wouldn't have timed his birthday with Week 16 games in the Year 2017.
Enjoy the day whether fantasy football matters or not! Be safe, enjoy. Good Luck if you still got Monday things going on for fantasy. Game recaps will post randomly through the day and all week. Tuesday...Projections for Week 17 will hit as usual.