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Putting A Bow On The 2018 Fantasy Season...

Date:
December 31, 2018

And, thus, ends another exhilarating, bizarre season of the NFL…at least for fantasy…at least for regular season fantasy. There is some mental relief for me that ‘it’s over’/in the books…no more projection deadlines or Thursday Night Football deadlines or Sunday inactive scrambling. However, just when I think I’m getting a break, I spent a chunk of Saturday organizing my January schedule…and I was like, ‘what break?’ I go right from the regular season ending to today studying tape of the prospects headed to the East-West Shrine Game. IT NEVER ENDS!!!

East-West Shrine week, followed by Senior Bowl week, while scouting the top QB prospects for the NFL Draft for CFM, while analyzing the NFL playoffs, while analyzing the Week 17 game tape – January is getting to be more hectic that the regular season. Material will be flowing all month on FFM and CFM…all offseason with free agency, the Draft, etc.

Fantasy Football, in all its forms, never ends – the studies never end so that I can be a step ahead of everyone, so you can be a step ahead of everyone. You go enjoy your life…I’ll be in a dark room studying QB prospect Easton Stick…and if you don’t know who that is – well, me either – and that’s why I’m here. I’ll go find out and let you know if you should care. You go enjoy your family or job or friends or golden age of television.

All in all, it was a very good year for Fantasy Football Metrics. Arguably, the best season of fantasy in our history. FFM-based team scoring across clients and subscribers was an all-time high. Several records set. Several ‘high score’ prizes won within leagues for folks. In the end, that’s all I can do – try to help build teams that score more than anyone else consistently. I can’t help strength of schedule or a one-off loss in the playoffs…I try to defeat it, but the great regular season records and scoring levels was sadly followed by 55%+ ‘meh’ winning in the fantasy playoffs. Great FFM-based teams were tripped up at the finish line. It kinda left a sour taste, a sucker punch to the gut finish. In time, we’ll process this season and look back and realize – how amazing some of our teams were and how great some of your ‘D’ and ‘F’ graded by Yahoo or ESPN redrafts were in hindsight.

Overall, for me, looking over the FFM-universe in 2018…this was by and large a great season overall.

There are two players I will remember most when thinking back over this season…Patrick Mahomes and James Conner. In other words, two guys drafted from rounds 6-10 and beyond were the key to most of the juggernauts built in 2018.

Passing on Todd Gurley for David Johnson in the 1st-round didn’t really matter as much as the decision people made to pull the trigger and draft Patrick Mahomes and James Conner rounds ahead of what the experts said…ensuring we got those two guys changed everything – and if you kept saying ‘it’s too early’, during your redraft/dynasty draft) and then got scooped by someone else on them…that’s your cross to bear, your lesson to learn. I hope you will remember 2018 as the season we completely went against the drafting and player acquisition grain set by the experts, taking OUR players a round+ ahead of consensus…getting laughed at by the goofs in our leagues who parrot ESPN…only for them to see what we had 2-3-4 weeks into the season and they had to eat their words – as we set scoring records across the globe. Don’t worry, they’ll all be back critiquing your ‘dumb’ draft taking players ‘too early’ again in 2019.

If you spit in their face and stuck with our FFM plan in 2018 preseason…you had a pretty hot fantasy season. If you succumbed to not wanting to take a player ‘too early’ and missed them – let it burn in your soul that you can’t let the unwashed dictate your plan. Those that have been with us for a year(s) now…you see ‘our plan’ is better than their plan most every time. Stick to the plan with ‘knowing’ pride. Patrick Mahomes is the poster child for that – you had to draft him ahead of others, usually to pair with Tyreek Hill, who we also drafted a round ahead of others. If you got Mahomes/Hill to start the season, you had to take them earlier than experts said…and it made all the difference. If you succumbed to the pressure of when you’re SUPPOSED to draft them and then watched them flourish on other teams and tried to sell your soul to acquire them in-season – then I hope you learned that lesson for 2019.

Of all your proclamations for next fantasy season – make ‘not giving a ____ what your league mates think of who you draft and when you draft them’ at the top of your proclamation list. You won’t always be right, but you’ll be more ‘right’ than them, and I can tell you what they know because I know where they get their football scouting and info (the same place you and I used to). Here’s what THEY know… https://youtu.be/EklCI7D7Rns?t=26

You think THEY’ve learned from this season? On ESPN fantasy Sunday morning…one expert said he wouldn’t take Patrick Mahomes in 2019, essentially because he’s likely not to repeat such a great season – that’s the theory. The other expert who was discussing Mahomes with him said that he probably will rate Mahomes highly (but won’t take him either) only because YOU PEOPLE keep taking QBs in leagues higher than you should (said with the disdain of the idiots they think us to be).

Another year…another experts ‘wrong again’ season.

Here are some random thoughts on thinking back over the 2018 fantasy season…besides feeling pretty great about following my ‘crazy’ fantasy draft/valuation plans…

-- I’m even more convinced about not sweating my RB situations in-redraft, post-redraft, opening week. It’s not a ‘Zero RB’ theory…because having an axiom you stick to blindly is useless. Every fantasy draft is a snowflake of preparation mixed with surprises to improvise on. It’s more a ‘who gives a ___ about your RB2’ theory.

I know the path to certain fantasy death is putting 90% of your energy into your RB situation everyday/every week and 10% of thoughts towards all the other positions combined…and that’s what most fantasy players and experts do – slave over RB pickups and drops and trades, and winging it on everything else. I have no idea why. It doesn’t make sense logically or mathematically. Never has this past decade.

THEY say QBs can be had any time. Guess who led my teams to titles and crushed all your RBs? Patrick Mahomes and Jared Goff, original draftees from day one. Guess who my running backs were to go with them? Mostly guys that weren’t even drafted in August/preseason – C.J. Anderson, Jamaal Williams, Jaylen Samuels, Damien Williams, Elijah McGuire.

RB situations are easy to fix on the fly…because THEY are always panicking on and off them based on whatever happened last week. Plus, RBs get hurt every week and new ones rise up and do the same/perform better than the guy they’re taking over for – not true with WRs, QBs, TEs, PKs.

-- You know what wasn’t easy to fix on the fly? The TE drought of 2018. You didn’t have Kelce-Ertz-Kittle…you died a lot of the time. Jonnu Smith and Vance McDonald rarely came to the rescue.

2018 only strengthened my belief in the positional scarcity/value of the tight end.

-- The one thing I got consistently wrong week-to-week in a lot of leagues, the first few weeks…DSTs. Playing the right (or wrong) DST was a major swing event in weekly matchups.

It’s why I downgraded their importance to start this season – lock-down defenses are becoming rare and ‘great matchups’ even rarer – every NFL team seemed to have a good offense to start this season. The rookie QBs came on like hurricanes in some cases. Pressed to start due to injury backup QBs looked like Hall of Famers most of the season…usually, they are the ones to target – they became the ones to avoid their first game.

It’s hard to find DST opportunity you can draft and forget anymore. I have feeling 2019 will be the same…we’ll be drafting a DST based on their Weeks 1-3 schedule and ready to change to several options throughout the year.

-- You know what was fun…the Video Q&A sessions we introduced this year.

I’m planning on improving and expanding the format on those and doing things in the offseason – just have to plan it out properly. Priority #1 is figuring out the best way to put the shows in demand for subscribers. It would be easy to make free view to all shows, but to keep the info to just our private cult…not as easy. I need easy/less stress on my time way to accomplish this.

Any budding audio experts who always wanted to produce a show (shows)? We’re always looking for unpaid help to take advantage of. If you’re a budding talk show host as well media/tech expert, if you’re a multi-dimensional media talent looking for a break/idea – I’m all ears. Email me.

-- The NFL regular season is over, and now comes the first wave of the offseason activity. Three things we have coming at you, beyond all the free offseason content on FFM…

1) College Football Metrics 2019 will be opened up soon, very soon. We will open up for subscription and make sure you’re connected ahead -- and then the scouting reports will start to fly fast and furious around the 2nd week of January.

2) We’re working on an offseason Dynasty ranking (based on three-year projections) and MFL draft ranking type of reporting and planning option/subscription offering (updating and adding to it all offseason)…a debut of a concept I’ve been thinking about for a couple years. If everything goes according to plan that will open up in February. More details to come.

3) I’m going to try to lose some weight.

Every NFL season, 17 weeks+, my personal step count goes down to ‘legally dead’ while my calorie count rises, especially with the holidays. I’ve added about 10 pounds of fun this NFL season…and was already too big prior.

I’ve been mapping out a diet plan for a month+ with a diet I’ve used successfully before. I’m going to try to get down to a weight I haven’t been in a decade+. I really need to make a big push and turn back the hands of time for a variety of reasons – to keep up my stamina/energy for sitting too much/writing too much year after year, to save time not having to go to any doctor visits in the future, etc. Time to get healthy and stop being a slug.

In my offseason writing, I will chronicling my offseason weight battle among all the other articles and posts – my start point, goal, issues, progress, the reward I’m setting for myself (still trying to figure that part out…I need something to fixate on because ‘for your own good’ never does it for me – I need to win/earn something).

Lastly, thank you for your support in 2018 and what’s to come in 2019. I literally cannot do this without you. I don’t want to work for the NFL in anyway. I don’t want to be on ESPN or NFL Network, etc. If I joined any of those organizations, I’d be completely neutered and/or fired quickly, I’m sure. I like being able to say what I want, when I want.

We don’t get a lot of referrals despite our success and satisfaction among the users. If you would all be so kind as to tell everyone in your leagues where you get your fantasy information, I would be very appreciative.

Did you just have that hollow feeling in your stomach at the thought of that last statement? What if everyone in your league was using my material? I would love it…you would hate it. And thus, the need for your support. It’s expensive to try to be in this game…really, it’s impossible/improbable. I don’t know how we’re still here with Google working against us (they now favor the big boys/the paying in searches) and everyone with a computer writing fantasy articles littering the internet. Your support keeps us alive and building tech improvements and adding services year after year. I wish your support helped keep my second yacht cleaned every Tuesday, but the support of our various subscription offerings only helps make sure I can eat this week/month (which should be less eating in 2019) and helps us try to improve systems, accessibility, and customer service.

You have no idea the war behind-the-scenes to be in this industry as an alternative idea/option with no connections or relationships to anyone in the establishment – and the establishment wanting to snuff you out…because they should. Corporate Darwinism and all. I’d probably want to crush opposition if I were running NFL Network, etc., but, alas, I’m the crushee not the crusher. FFM can only survive with your help.

‘Help’ is not only in the form of people subscribing, but you have no idea how many people volunteer their time to try to help FFM pushing forward. ESPN has staffs of writers, producers, admin, finance, big budgets, etc. It takes a village to run an online business like ours…an expensive village. Many people have come along to help FFM in the journey with their own time and talents, on their own dime – writing articles, editing material, tossing out ideas, giving advice from the area of expertise…down to a quick letting us know if an article didn’t post properly, or something is off kilter on a web page so we can fix it, or anything else odd noticed doe us to address – the community takes a second to send a note instead of assuming we know the issue and it’s all a huge help. Every little bit helps. I wish I could repay everyone who pitches into the cause an equal compensation for their efforts, but we cannot at this stage – we’re still trying to get this plane off the ground against major headwinds and trying to find cruising altitude someday.

I hope I can repay all the kind acts and diligent work efforts appropriately someday, you know who you all are I’m speaking to -- but for now all I can give to the tireless volunteers and our loyal customers is a hearty, sincere thank you and pray that God blesses your efforts on our behalf and gives you blessed prosperous 2019.

Have a safe, fun New Year’s Eve and relaxed New Year’s Day. When you’re kissing a loved one at midnight, I’ll probably be watching tape of East-West Shrine QB prospect Marcus McMaryion…to see who the heck that is and whether we should care for fantasy. Maybe, I’ll just watch the tape of Dwayne Washington run for 100+ yards in his Week 17 game vs. Carolina…that might be my version of a midnight kiss counting down to 2019.

However it is you celebrate – enjoy. Thank you for 2018.

The 2019 studies for title acquisitions and defenses starts…right now.  

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About R.C. Fischer

R.C. Fischer is a fantasy football player analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics and College Football Metrics. 

Email rc4metrics@gmail.com

Learn more about RC and the Fantasy Football Metrics system >>