Busy May, football never sleeps…
All month of May, I’m going to be working on writing Phase I of our annual/2020 Fantasy Football Draft Guide (for June 1st approx. target release date)…including the corresponding reports like Undervalued and Overvalued. We also have the NFL schedule announcement for the 2020 season happening – a lot of things happening in May, and I’ll be pressed for time for writing daily articles/notes, etc.
With that said, I’m going to re-post some material from the prior season…to keep content flowing and to look back at what we were thinking at various times in 2019. Right now, we need football in our lives. They aren’t in training camps yet, but we can try to relive some of it by reading some of my game recaps and reports from the 2019 season…with some quick 2020/current commentary over top of it.
So, enjoy a look back at some classic games from 2019, classic rants, and what we got wildly right and wildly wrong.
2019 Dynasty/Fantasy Football Analysis: Week 1 – Packers vs. Bears
I have more notes on this game than I know what to do with. I don’t even know where to start. Some of you want to talk about/complain about Mitch Trubisky, as you do. We’ll get there. Some of you are hitting a higher level of consciousness, I’m proud of you…many you have already reached out to complain about the true Bears problem, Matt Nagy. It started in the 1st-quarter last night with the Nagy texts and emails, and it hasn’t stopped since. You know I’m going there too, but with my usual deftness that puts into print what your mind was stirring up all last night. I’m good like that.
Watching the various pregame coverage last night, the media went into this game with the narrative:
1) Mitch Trubisky sucks…and we want more/any proof, so we can hammer it.
2) Matt Nagy is a delicate genius that is keeping the Bears afloat.
3) The Bears' defense is the most awesome-ist! Steve Mariucci said so in the pregame – keep an eye on Khalil Mack as one of the better defensive players in the game. OK, I will…thanks for the tip!
You do know we all pay extra to have NFL Network from our satellite and cable providers, right? That’s what you’re paying for. Hot Khalil Mack is really good takes.
4) Aaron Rodgers is still the best QB around for the NFL/fantasy. Sure, we’ll rank Mahomes ahead of him…but we’re jamming Rodgers’ in #2 because he's 'the man' (Ric Flair lawsuit pending).
What I saw in this game, among other things…
1) The reality of Matt Nagy as a scared playcaller (a la Andy Reid...who lucked out getting Mahomes), a non-developer and over-coached/manager of the quarterback (he’s nothing like Sean McVay), and horrible at judging his offensive personnel.
This was the game that further confirmed my serious doubts on Nagy…it is potentially the beginning of his demise (in about two years), but the national NFL media is not even thinking that’s a possibility.
2) Everyone in post-game fantasy analysis, but me (but I didn't check that fact hard), missed on the Mike Pettine is a genius and this Green Bay defense has a chance to be great angle to the game – it was the story of this game, and yet it will hardly be mentioned…and definitely not hammered on. Pettine is arguably among the top 3 defensive coordinators in the league…and no in the media really cares. They think anyone could hold the Bears to three points…because Trubisky sucks.
3) We’re seeing the decline of Aaron Rodgers more and more and it’s not really being addressed. ‘Winning a game’ keeps us not-focused on it. Not that he’s bad or anything…but he’s rapidly gone/going from great-to-good, but we have fond memories we can’t let go of.
I had him falling in my redraft rankings, and on our ‘overvalued’ report – but not aggressively enough, potentially, for fantasy.
Rodgers is better at commercials than quarterbacking these days.
We’ll get into all of these things deeper in my opening game extravaganza analysis piece. It’s 5,000+ words, so buckle up. And just a quick note – I’m writing 100,000+ words a month in-season. Moving fast to get through tape study and report out…there will be typos or grammatical errors. I have two grammar check software programs I run them through and my own re-read/edit. If it makes it past those checkpoints…it’s usually not too bad. I’m going for speed and mass of reporting rather than an ‘A’ in English class.
One other opener note before we get specific and detailed – I think the NFL is like a hundred years old now. I’m not sure, but I’m pretty sure. If that’s true, you would think the NFL would do something to note it or celebrate it, rather than ignore such a thing.
Oh, no wait…that’s right – it’s the entirety of their being in every game coverage now. My bad.
I usually make fun of Michelle Tafoya (again, she made more money last night than I will this calendar year), but she deserves combat pay for being forced to wear that stupid outfit all game. Did anyone find the NBC crew’s cosplay of the year 1919 all that funny/engaging…or did you find it sad?
The NFL had a professional movie maker come in and make that 100-year celebration video last year, and it was great, well received…so, like every corporation, the NFL decided it had hit on gold from their own genius and are now going to take the fun/joke too far and make us hate it. It’s like when someone in your company was referencing/doing the Macarena dance at a corporate function to show how ‘relatable’/current they were years ago, like after it jumped the shark months prior. Later, they were ‘talking to the hand’ a year after that came and went. I’m sure the NFL will tone it down this Sunday…’NOT’.
…oh, is shouting ‘NOT’ sarcastically not a thing anymore? My bad.
Fantasy Player Notes…
I loved this game outcome because I was predicatively right’ about so many things. Let’s get into all of them and my early victory laps and then we’ll finish with my Mitch Trubisky dissertation.
I’m occasionally wrong, and I try to be the first to point that out and discuss it…but I was right about so many things here that we/I need to celebrate that because it’s what you paid for in the preseason. I need to earn my pay, and boy did I here!
— I WAS RIGHT… The Green Bay Packers defense is one of the best in football. You might’ve thought we were crazy pushing them as a top 10 DST for 2019, but here we are.
*2020 NOTE = The Packers finished 9th in NFL Defense...but #16 in Fantasy scoring -- but for the first few weeks this defense was hot as a pistol and everyone started chasing it. Their DST was good but started hot/finished flat.*
Because highly paid NFL analysts and media members have absolutely no vision for anything beyond the obvious items that we were all hit upside the head with/obvious the prior season…they spent the entire pregame gushing over the Bears' defense and hardly a word spent about the Packers.
I think it was very telling that at the end of this game, when Green Bay had secured the obvious victory, with seconds remaining, Aaron Rodgers came over and was completely different towards Mike Pettine than he was Matt LaFleur. There was a genuine love and respect for the way Rodgers came up and shoved Pettine in that celebratory way of saying, “Great Job! You’re awesome!!” LaFleur was right there talking to Pettine when Rodgers came over to Pettine…and then Aaron Rodgers, as if he almost forgot and caught himself how he needs to look, went over and gently patted LaFleur on the shoulder real quick as he blew by him to get to the bench. I thought it was telling.
Mike Pettine is the real head coach here. He’s the heartbeat of the Green Bay Packers. The front office wanted Pettine to be the head coach, but you know why Mike Pettine is a genius? He turned the job down because he’s made plenty of money in the NFL and hated all of the nonsense that comes with being a head coach, and he loves teaching and working with the players as a coordinator, so he chose less money to stay doing what he loves. He’s one of the best coaches, coordinator or otherwise, in the league. You didn’t hear any of that in the pregame leading up to this. I’ve been talking about it since he was the Browns head coach many years ago before the owner killed him by forcing him to take Johnny Manziel, who he almost resigned over having to take.
When the clock expired and the Packers win had become official, the camera panned to the most camera-worthy moment on the sidelines -- they picked up on the players celebrating Mike Pettine near a la Buddy Ryan’s treatment over head coach Mike Ditka after the ‘85 Bears won the Super Bowl. The last few minutes of last night’s game tells you everything about where the Packers are at – they are Mike Pettine driven, and there’s not a lot of love for Matt LaFleur.
For his part, LaFleur looks like a robot who has bad programming on an attempted human response A.I. project. I liked the idea of LaFleur, when he was first hired, but the more I saw…the more I moved away. LaFleur looked like a college grad intern drew straws and won the right to be the head coach of the Packers for this game. A blank look the entire night. Not much interaction with anyone. Unsure how to handle everyone’s genuine love for Mike Pettine within two yards of his personal space. Everything you wanted to know you could see with the different body languages and facial expressions of the players towards Pettine and towards (mostly ignoring) LaFleur.
And if I know Matt LaFleur types/NFL head coaches in general, this is an egregious affront to him. Most young managers of business or football coaches arrogantly believe it’s their genius that got them there. They have the whistle so everyone must pay attention and adore them. I went through a spell of that in my life in corporate America…it kind of comes with the territory of being a young, self-centered, promoted fast person at a young age.
All that to say -- the big story of this game should be the Packers defensive makeover and the genius of Pettine. But it will get a cursory mention all day today, I’m sure. When you have programmed into your brain that Mitchell Trubisky is terrible…then when you hold him to three points, you get no credit as the defensive coordinator. In analyst’s minds, anyone could’ve stopped Trubisky.
— I WAS RIGHT… You had no reason to trust David Montgomery (6-18-0, 1-27-0/1) to start 2019 season the way people were drafting him in redraft the past month+.
*2020 NOTE = Only I was bold enough to call the Montgomery problem out, with impunity, all preseason. Guess who was right? I got other things wrong, so I won't celebrate too hard...but more celebrations than not, as always.*
Because there is no original thought, Montgomery got pegged with the Pro Football Focus award for most missed tackles by percentage in college and then that’s translated into every armchair football expert talking about how wonderfully Montgomery breaks all the tackles (it’s forced missed tackles, not breaking tackles) – including Al Michaels mentioning it multiple times to start the game. Even though it’s not technically a true statement about him breaking tackles, it doesn’t matter they have made up their mind and you’re not gonna change it.
Montgomery looks like every solid running back on every depth chart and practice squad in the NFL. Only we’ve been forced such a glowing narrative, of this guy who was falling in the NFL Draft, that we are emotionally changed every time he touches the ball and the announcers go into hype mode. If you bought it in redraft, you WILDLY overpaid…and you can thank the echo chamber of mainstream fantasy hype for that. There was no way Mike Davis and Tarik Cohen weren't taking the lead early in the season -- thinking Montgomery would just come in and dominant touches and be an RB1-2 threat early was silly.
I thought Montgomery was fine in this game. I believe he may have issues running the ball successfully in the NFL because he’s trying so hard to make people miss that he slows to a halt and or jumps to a halt trying to be clever but that only allows 1st-string NFL defenders extra time to close in on him while he’s not in motion. You saw some of that in this game.
I also saw Matt Nagy go to DM right away after starting Mike Davis (5-19-0, 6-17-0/7). As the game progressed, it was obvious Mike Davis is the better NFL running back at this moment. Especially in a big opening game national TV event. It would’ve been wise to stick with Davis-Cohen and hold Montgomery back. But Matt Nagy is smarter than everyone so he’s going to force the rookie who looks great in T-shirts and shorts practice and barely played in the preseason into the game and into prime touches and then potentially miss out on other opportunities. And I thought Montgomery was fine overall, but I would’ve loved to seen Mike Davis get several carries as a bell cow to get him going to get some continuity. Instead, I thought, the entire Bears backfield plan was disjointed. Too many rotations in and out. Too many clever alignments that meant nothing. No continuity. Either stick with Davis or stick with Montgomery for a bit but the constant rotation early didn’t seem to help the offense at all last night.
As far as this backfield going forward, Matt Nagy is going to try to push David Montgomery as ‘the guy’. This loss only emboldens him that after one whole game, they need to change everything. But I also know from watching Nagy last year he wants to be buddy-buddy with the offensive players especially the running backs, so he wants everybody to share touches, so they’re not offended at him. Even if one of these guys does break out a bit, Nagy will throw cold water on it just to rotate three backs for rotation’s sake.
I’m not ready to trust Tarik Cohen (8-49-0/10) getting 10+ target per game regularly either -- we saw this last year. One week, Cohen was a target monster and the next week forgotten and he was on the team, even though he was the most effective weapon out of the backfield they have…and the second-best receiver they have. The Bears had to throw their way back into this game 2nd-half and Trubisky then threw a lot to Cohen -- because it’s one of two guys he can count on. You would like to see Cohen doing way more interesting things in this offense, but it’s not in the plan. Circumstances forced this target spike, I think. As soon as it’s convenient, as soon as the Bears get a lead in the game, Nagy will shut everything down to run the ball and protect the lead. Which means split carries for Montgomery and Davis, and Cohen will get forgotten. Only in a crisis do we see Cohen‘s usage elevate. If it were up to Nagy, he would not use Cohen hardly at all. Cohen‘s usage is tied to a Matt Nagy plan going awry. The on purpose plan is to old-school Pete Carroll run the ball in play good defense, and keep the QB stuffed in a box.
Back when Nagy was in KC, and Tyreek Hill burst onto the scene as a rookie, they'd hardly use him either. He'd take his first touch of the game, and run for a 70+ yard TD...and then never touch the ball the next 55+ minutes of the game. Guess how many rushing attempts Tarik, the most explosive, game-changing guy they have, took in this game? Zero.
— I WAS RIGHT… Allen Robinson (7-102-0/12) was one of the 5-6 most undervalued fantasy assets going into the season…a real threat to be a WR1 this season.
*2020 NOTE = I was right...he finished #10 in PPR among WRs (Weeks 1-16) per game scoring.*
Robinson looks like he’s back to his old self a couple years removed from that ACL. He was looking that way partway into last year, which is why I was so excited about him last year and going into this year. We saw it in this game – he’s back… With the bonus of all the other Bears’ receivers being weak and running predictable routes that are covered easily by defenders. It’s why it looks like Trubisky is forcing the ball to Robinson – he is. He has no other choice in this offense.
And, note Robinson excelled fighting off the very excellent corner Jaire Alexander – Alexander is going to be known as a shutdown corner soon enough, which was another reason I wanted to push the Packers DST in 2019. Alexander did a nice job, but Robinson has that #1 WR ability where he’s going to get his a la DeAndre Hopkins or old Antonio Brown. He can’t be easily shutout of catches no matter what defense is thrown at him.
Speaking of Bears’ WRs: I was also right… Anthony Miller (0-0-0/1) is a waste of your time. I’ve said it for now two years. He was a totally wasted redraft pick, in part, because the lazy NFL analysts were looking right past Allen Robinson and trying to find an alternative top receiver for Chicago and decided on Miller for reasons I cannot understand to this day. That giant sucking sound on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning will be the sound of Anthony Miller being dropped off every redraft team in America.
Javon Wims needs to be starting…stat.
— I WAS RIGHT… You needed to avoid paying the high price Davante Adams (4-36-0/8) due to the schedule start first and foremost with a dash of worry about this new offense.
*2020 NOTE = We guided to 'pass' on Davante in redraft because of the schedule start and then buy him lower around Weeks 3-4-5. We were right, he started slower (schedule's fault) and then took off.*
The Bears shut him down/Rodgers couldn’t force/get him the ball like Trubisky could Robinson.
This Packers offense looks terrible, but the Bears' defense was a big part of that…so let’s not go too far with the anti-GB offense narrative. However, I’d be concerned.
-- I WAS RIGHT… Aaron Rodgers (18-30 for 203 yards, 1 TD/0 INT) is fading away for fantasy. He’s not a top five guy anymore and might not be a top 10 for much longer in fantasy. I was laying out the case for the issue in the preseason, but I didn’t take it far enough. His season NFL/passer averages the past few years are not elite. He’s going to get surpassed by Mahomes-Baker among others. Why is Big Ben trading later than him?
*2020 NOTE = I was right...he was trading as the #2 QB in ADP preseason, and finished #15 among fantasy QBs in PPG in 2019 season. Not a QB1.*
Rodgers has thrown for 300+ yards in a game four times in his his last 21 game appearances. Trubisky five times in 15 games last season.
Trubisky looked more talented than Rodgers in this game – stronger arm, faster feet, worked in a muddy pocket with more confidence. Both struggled/looked sloppy in this game, but Rodgers struggled just as much/more than Trubisky...but that will not be discussed.
BUT Trubisky was so bad on 3rd-downs this game!!! Yep…Chicago converted on 20% of their 3rd-downs. Not good.
Aaron Rodgers/Green Bay…17% on 3rd-downs last night.
BUT the Bears' defense!!! Again, you’re overlooking how good this Packers defense is…because Steve Mariucci isn’t spoon-feeding it to the masses.
It doesn’t help Rodgers that Marquez Valdes-Scantling (4-52-0/6) and Geronimo Allison (0-0-0/0) are weak options for him to work with.
Rodgers is fading, the WRs after Adams are weak (Kumerow and Lazard should be starting), but the cherry on top is – Matt LaFleur is fake-Sean McVay…Faux McVay. If Aaron Rodgers doesn’t float a balloon ball deep to Valdes-Scantling and soon after float an ill-advised pass towards covered receivers in the end zone, but fortunate Jimmy Graham nabbed the poorly thrown ball for a score – the Packers would have been shutout.
Last year, Rodgers on a bum leg against the better Bears defense personnel (2018 v. 2019) and vs. Vic Fangio – Rodgers made things happen. This year, barely 200 yards passing, barely 50%+ completions, five sacks and lucky not to get shutout. Rodgers dropped back 12 times on 3rd-down, he converted two 1st-downs, took several sacks. One additional time, he got bailed out by a P.I. call to convert a 3rd-down.
Rodgers looked better on one leg vs. Fangio and working with McCarthy a year ago than healthy vs. Pagano working with Faux McVay in 2019…not a good sign to start. Let’s see what happens not-against the Bears ahead, but I’d be worried if I were a Packers’ fan, that ‘the window’ has closed with Rodgers. If it isn’t closed it’s close…too close for comfort. LaFleur isn’t making him better, he’s putting him in a box surrounded by weak skill players. Similar to Nagy-Trubisky…and many other QBs of the past with the Jeff Fisher’s and John Fox’s of the world.
-- I WAS RIGHT… Aaron Jones (13-39-0, 0-0-0/1) was not worth the redraft price. He’s just not a great lead back. He’s useful in a split role, but THEY paid for a feature and they got a split role, oft-injured RB.
*2020 NOTE = I was due to get one wrong. Jones finished as one of the top RBs in fantasy. He started choppy and Jamaal Williams was getting pushed ahead of him some, but then Jamaal got hurt a few weeks in and Jones took off and the rest is history. I thought I was going to be right after the first few weeks of the season -- and people were getting weary after Week 4 (three of 4 games under 40 yards rushing to that point), but he popped from there. Not as great as you think, but popped for FF for sure.*
The worst part of this was…if the Bears are killing you with their pass rush, where’s all these great screens Faux McVay was going to use with Jones? One target…no catches.
Jamaal Williams…2 targets, 2 catches.
Jones will be OK ahead, if he stays healthy, because they have little else to turn to…but you have to be scared to death if you invested highly in him. That’s why we had him on the ‘overvalued’ list for redrafting. We can find split role RBs all over. I don’t need to pay top 25 prices for a top 75-100 fantasy player.
-- I WAS RIGHT… Jimmy Graham (3-30-1/6) looks shot. He’s moving slower than ever. His TD catch was a surprise to the defender/look-what-I-found grab (that Graham didn’t hardly leave his feet for…old Jimmy would have made more effort to catch that pass. Instead, he was just reached out and made a good grab…he was not open, per se, or moving around gracefully).
*2020 NOTE = This was too easy...*
If I owned Graham, I’d sell him ASAP off this TD moment (make an agreement and do the actual exchange Tuesday)…with the masses all in love with what they just saw. Once the Sunday games go, this will be half-forgotten. If you can’t pre-sell…sell next week for whatever TE dared NOT score a TD Week 1 and thus is hated/a bust for THEM.
Sobering numbers from the snap counts…
35 snaps = Graham
34 = Marcedes Lewis
20 = Robert Tonyan (the best talent GB may have as a receiving TE now)
Graham was out of the game a lot it felt like from the live watch. I’m surprised he hit 55% of the offensive snaps. Graham is a part-time TE for the Packers and going to be their red zone guy. Old Jimmy Graham is dead…he died a few years ago but we cannot give up the memories in our mind of the great Jimmy Graham of yesteryear.
In other news, we’re still pining for Rob Gronkowski to make a comeback and we put him on our roster and wait 8 weeks to see if it comes true. For what?
-- I WAS RIGHT… Matt Nagy is not an offensive genius.
*2020 NOTE = This was too easy... The Bears finished 29th in PPG in 2019...it's all Trubisky's fault though. never Nagy's...*
In his first nine games as Bears head coach, the team scored 30+ points in a game four times. In this next/last nine games, they have no scored 30+ points and been held under 17 points in four of their last 6 games. Nagy has been figured out. He has no 'other gear' or trick up his sleeve.
It wasn’t because of this game that I moved against Nagy, it was because of last season that I developed that notion. This game just reinforced typical Matt Nagy (and Andy Reid)…cool alignment the very first play/series of the game, and then doldrums the rest of the game. Nagy is not an offensive genius. He’s trying to recreate the Alex Smith model in Kansas City he helped coach – play it safe and efficient, get a lead, sit on the lead with the running game.
The Bears offense is not one to chase for fantasy because Matt Nagy is Pete Carroll/Mike Zimmer/Andy Reid…getting a lead and playing things safe are their M.O.’s.
Cordarrelle Patterson (1-3-0/3) was not used in any fresh way.
The pass patterns were predictable, like it was a lot last year, and it rarely had any receivers open. Green Bay blanketed receivers all game. Either it’s the playbook or Gabriel-Miller-and all the TEs need to go (which may be true).
Matt Nagy is your run of the mill/average NFL head coach. He'll be as good as the existing talent, assistant coaches, and strength of schedule allows…which means you’re up one year when everything goes your way and then down the next when expectations are higher, and teams have a read on what you’re doing. So many young NFL ‘Coach of the Year’ guys are fired within 2-3 years of winning the award. Nagy is getting himself on that train ride.
Nagy has one card to play ahead (since he cannot/has not developed Trubisky)…he can just go along with the media and low-key blame Trubisky. Nagy isn’t developing him, so when it goes bad -- the media is coming after Trubisky (they already are). Nagy can adopt that thinking and get another year or two of employment out of it. He could go all in on Mitch and cut him loose to be a gunslinger, but that’s not in Nagy’s DNA…so, having Mitch take the bullets is the likely play we’ll see acted out the next two years. It’s a shame.
-- OK, let’s get into Mitch Trubisky (26-45 for 228 yards, 0 TD/1 INT, 3-11-0)…
*2020 NOTE = This was the right overall sentiment on Mitch for his future. One 'miss' prediction was that Mitch didn't catch fire as much as I hoped from Week 3-to-13 (as you will see noted below) but he was much better -- he was the #16 QB in fantasy Weeks 3-14. 17 TDs/8 INTs in a 6-4 stretch with two rushing TDs. Why he is hated so much with solid numbers and five-star raw tools to groom, I still have no idea.*
You’re prepared for my elegant or reaching/flailing defense of Trubisky (because I’ve touted him as a future great) while you are frustrated with him as a Bears fan and/or holder of him in fantasy and dynasty.
You’ll probably be surprised at how close we are on our current beliefs in Trubisky for fantasy…but for very different reasons (that we’ll get into). I’m frustrated and ready to fold too…and I started doing that by not drafting him much at all in redrafts this year, but not for my lack of faith in Trubisky’s talent.
Before you throw Trubisky in the trash, as a current fantasy owner or just someone watching to see if he develops, remember we went through this last year. You wrote him off after the first few games of 2018, and then from Week 4 on he was one of the top fantasy QBs in the game. That guy still exists…despite whatever Nagy is doing.
However, Trubisky as one of the greats ahead…I’ll bet against it more than assume it. I’m waiting for the tipping point where I can see the path to greatness -- and I don’t think I’m going to get it for a while, possibly never. Whether it's I'm wrong on him or the situation kills it off.
I’m not down on Trubisky because of this game. Not at all. I thought this was some of Trubisky’s most encouraging work – he looked a lot more comfortable in a constant muddy pocket than he did last year, and he made some throws with sheer arm talent that were stunning. His footwork and presence in the pocket has grown exponentially. He has a cannon for an arm and no one in the media acknowledges it. On that one series where it was like 1st & 40 at one point…Trubisky lost about 75 yards worth of passing yards to various penalties and drops.
One of the main problems with Trubisky, and why I’ve been walking away for fantasy in 2019…he’s not likely ever going to be like Mahomes-Mayfield-Murray. Those guys have been throwing the ball in fast-paced, wide-open offenses for years back to high school. Trubisky was raised to be a traditional, dull, old school pocket passer. He sat for two years at UNC, and then when finally given the chance to start he was sensational…racing from unknown to the #2 pick in the NFL Draft in just a few months. He then gets stuck with John Fox (which is like getting stuck with Jeff Fisher) as his coach year-one and then he gets Matt Nagy…and has a nice 2018 and takes a team to the playoffs. He is stuck with coaches who don’t want wide-open offenses and who want him to play ‘controlled’. He’s not going to be let out of his cage easily. He’s going to have to force it, but he’s not that personality. He’s not Baker. I fear Trubisky will toe the line instead of being a gunslinger…to please the coaches.
Trubisky is going to settle in as a nice top 8-12 fantasy QB but I doubt he’s going higher…not in his present circumstances. It would be like if Jared Goff were stuck with Jeff Fisher for years, people would hate him/think he’s a bust. People wrote off Goff after one year in the league, like they did Trubisky, and when Goff started to succeed – people stopped making fun of him, but they still don’t ‘like’ him. Yesterday, in a high stakes fantasy draft…I saw Goff go 13th-round (12-team)/not among the top 12 QBs taken. The media doesn’t hype (or like) Goff and the masses just follow thinking there is nothing to get hyped about. Carson Wentz is THEIR star, not Goff...from the same draft.
With Trubisky…the media isn’t even quiet. They openly doubt him. They openly mock his skills. They did the same with Nick Foles and then Jared Goff, among others I could point to, so I do not care that THEY are seeing this game as further proof of what they already wanted to believe. They are so wrong so often it shouldn’t way on us, but it does. It's their day to gloat. It's fine. They did for three weeks on him last year...and then he crammed it up their cram-hole Week 4.
The analysts/media holds much sway with NFL coaches, so not only do you question Trubisky because the media does…but so does Matt Nagy. I believe Nagy thinks he has to baby him, keep him spoon-fed. He’s not trying to thrive behind Trubisky…he’s trying to work around Trubisky and telling/coaching him not to mess things up, in a sense. Freddie Kitchens will let Baker do whatever he wants. So too, Kingsbury-Murray. Kinda Mahomes and Reid (although Andy can’t help himself). But Trubisky…little confidence shown. The Eagles did the same when Foles was having 7 TD pass games and on the verge of putting up a historic efficiency numbers his breakout season – they tried to reel him in, and then couldn’t wait to trade him off. The Eagles traded away Nick Foles to go all-in on Sam Bradford. Where is Chip Kelly now? Where is Foles?
Philly had their minds made up that Foles was ‘lucky’ and just waiting for the clock to strike midnight. The media was leading the charge on anti-Foles. They’re doing the same to Trubisky. I am beginning to think he’ll never overcome the glass ceiling. He’s been typecast by Hollywood/the NFL media and its coaches.
Trubisky had almost identical numbers as Deshaun Watson last year (including rushing), but more wins…but Watson is a ‘given’ as great by EVERYBODY and is often seen as the best non-Mahomes QB for fantasy…while Trubisky doesn’t get drafted in many redrafts. That’s the world we live in. If Watson flops Week 1 vs. the Saints, NO ONE will question his abilities. Today, Trubisky is everybody’s punching bag.
11-3 record, 66.6% Comp. Pct., 228.0 passing yards, 1.7 passing TDs/0.5 INTs, 95.4 QB rate, 30.1 yards rushing per game = Trubisky 2018
11-5 record, 68.3% Comp. Pct., 260.3 passing yards, 1.6 passing TDs/0.6 INTs, 103.1 QB rate, 34.4 yards rushing per game = Watson 2018
One is seen as the clear future, one is a horrific disaster that needs to have the plug pulled.
Because that’s the world we live in…why am I going to fight it, for fantasy? I got way better performing QBs in way better offenses with way better coaches than messing around waiting on Trubisky-Nagy to click. So, you think you’re frustrated…I’m about to give up too. I already have in a sense. Barely drafted him this year – much better alternatives, as laid out in my draft guide. I am still a huge Trubisky believer, but I know he’s got EVERYTHING against him like Nick Foles and others…and you almost cannot overcome that media momentum for fantasy. What coach is willing to come in and bet big on Trubisky after this Trub-Nagy run that has a few more years to go? The fans will revolt if a new coach wants to work with Trubisky (but Arians is going to save Jameis!!). It took Foles YEARS to get an ounce of respect. Winning the Super Bowl and a Super Bowl MVP got him a backup job the following year. Why would I think Trubisky will get any different treatment? I’ve seen this NFL-movie play out too many times before Trubisky.
I still believe Trubisky is the most physically gifted quarterback prospect I’ve ever scouted out of college. I think he could be a superstar, and I still think that potential exists…he’s just got a ton of barriers in front of him. Trubisky may keep progressing and just change the narrative on his own, I hope he does…but it’s going to mean people still ignore and mock him (see: Jared Goff 2019 vibe in fantasy vs. the glorious Jameis Winston expectations). Fantasy/NFL life isn’t fair. Minnesota cut Kyle Sloter to roll with Sean Mannion. That’s the football world we live in.
You think it is bad now. Wait until the Bears/Trubisky get crushed by the Broncos next week. I’d be a buyer of Trubisky in dynasty (deeper rosters) and in two-QB leagues on Monday morning after Week 2 Sunday.
I still think Trubisky will be a QB1 before the season ends…or maybe just a QB1 Weeks 3-13. We’ll look back later and realizes starting with GB-DEN was a terrible backdrop to try to judge a quarterback for 2019. I am not holding Trubisky cards thinking 100% he’s the next Aaron Rodgers anymore. I don’t ever think he’ll get the chance…but he might. If he starts to pop, I know I can buy back in on him cheap. Hell, look at the prices you can get Goff on today...and look at what he's proven/delivered. I’d rather have Goff-McVay than Trubisky-Nagy. I wish I could get Trubisky-McVay.
The 2020 College Football Metrics Season Is In Full Swing!
Time to start the studies, scouting, grading, ranking of the 2020 NFL Draft/Dynasty Rookie Draft class. CFM, as always, will have scouting reports on all the top prospects and small-school sleepers and everything in-between as we grade/rank over 600+ prospects by draft day. We’ll cover the East-West Shrine, Senior Bowl, NFL Combine, and NFL Draft along the way and build to our weekly Top 200+ Dynasty Rookie Draft rankings (including IDPs).
We’ll also look back at the 2019 NFL Draft and 2019 Dynasty Rookie Draft rankings and re-do the 2019 Rookie Draft to see where we’re at and what items undervalued (now) to target in 2020. So much scouting to do – the Dynasty/Fantasy studies never end and are constantly fluid. It all starts again in early-mid January 2020.
Sign-ups for CFM and/or our Dynasty Offseason/Best Ball (DOBB) subscriptions are found from the FFM home page ‘Subscribe now’ tab.
2020 Dynasty Offseason/Best Ball Reports and Rankings Are Constantly Adjusting To All The Changes!
It’s time for season #2 of our last season’s debut subscription…Dynasty Offseason/Best Ball.
I created Dynasty offseason as a way to communicate rankings/valuations on (500+) existing players (and also 400+ IDPs) for Dynasty and Keeper planning purposes (trades, etc.) as well as getting the jump on Best Ball/MFL drafts that begin in February and run all the rest of the year.
The fastest growing success percentage/money earning with FFM scouting/rankings/etc. is in those Best Ball/MFLs – draft a deep roster and forget it until the season begins, and then just watch the results…no lineup settings, no trading. Just pay to compete, out-draft everyone else, and try and cash in on our early/better read on things.
Dynasty Offseason subscriptions will be available when College Football Metrics begins (1/3/20), and you can purchase as a combo or just individually the one you want/need. However, the Dynasty Offseason rankings, etc., will not kickoff until right after the Super Bowl (articles and reports will post in January but player rankings/mock drafts not until past the Super Bowl)…and then we pile in material daily/weekly until opening day of the new NFL season.
If you were not a part of the Dynasty Offseason program last year, I will have more details on it on my playoff game recaps in 2020 and some additional explanation on Best Ball/MFL leagues, how to get started in them, how they work, etc. – if you’re not doing Best Ball/MFLs…you are missing out.
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