2019 Dynasty-Fantasy Preseason Analysis Wk3 – 49ers 27, Chiefs 17
The Chiefs and 49ers both went with their 1st-teams for a while in this one and it was telling on several fronts for a few ‘under the gun’ fantasy players going into this week’s redrafts. A few things to unpack and let me drop an interesting trade rumor (not KC-backfield related) on you as well. And then I want to end on a serious reminder note…
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Let’s start with the ‘As The World Turns’ KC backfield…
Damien Williams (1-2-0, 3-74-1/3) caught a beautiful pass from Patrick Mahomes and then dodged a tackle and then outran two tacklers on his way to a 62-yard catch-and-run TD.
All it took was one play to solve all the Chiefs’ running back confusion for the past three weeks. Well, that was certainly neat and tidy fix. Who knew everything could be solved on one play?
Damien Williams was the unquestioned/defended-by-coaches lead RB all year, until Andy Reid went against everything he has been doing for years (one lead RB offense) and low-key announced an RBBC approach a few weeks ago. The announcement sent Carlos Hyde up draft rankings, and eroded Damien. Then when Hyde was not deemed the answer…all that love went to rookie Darwin Thompson (3-8-0, 2-9-0/3)…we needed KC RB answers and it if couldn’t be Williams or then Hyde, then it HAD to be the rookie. One flare pass TD in a Week 3 preseason game later…Damien Williams is now the unquestioned ‘man’ in this backfield.
Is that how this all really works?
I dunno…maybe? NFL head coaches are the most illogical humans among us.
How that one play fixes things, I do not know. I’m still skeptical, but the Chiefs may not have any better options.
What we do know as of now…
Williams is the lead guy, to whatever degree.
Hyde is all but gone from the team.
Darwin Thompson’s mercurial ADP rise hit a brick wall as Williams defeated him with one play, but also Thompson failed to look as hot as he has once he was working against the 49ers 1st-team defense. It’s easier to look cool versus 3rd/4th-string defenses.
Damien Williams has reclaimed all his ADP heat back…he’s going in the top 10-12 among redraft RBs the last 24 hours of drafting.
Amazing what one play can do for a guy…
Watch for KC to pickup one of the Eagles cast-off RBs in a week+ for some depth and as a Damien-Darwin hedge.
-- Last week, Jimmy Garoppolo (14-20 for 188 yards, 1 TD/0 INT) was debated as a potential failure for the 49ers, a possible bust…all because he had a bad series or two against Denver’s 1st-team defense.
Well, JG looked comfortable about 2-3 throws into this game and played as well as I’ve seen him in years. He was back to being Jimmy G. It may be a foreshadowing on the weak Chiefs defense…easier to be comfortable vs. KC’s pass defense than Denver’s.
If you bought into Garoppolo failure hysteria a week ago…you bought too soon.
…just another one event in the preseason hysteria forcing ‘recency’ judgment mistakes.
-- OK, trade rumor…
Do buy into the 49ers ‘not thrilled with Dante Pettis (3-36-0/5)’ narrative. So much so, I think he’s being discussed in trade right now as I type.
Big mistake, potentially. But I get it. No one wants ‘diva’ wide receivers in the NFL…except some do/have to put up with them to try to win now. Pettis has that potential – pain in the ass arrogance, not a great practice player, tends to light up when the lights come on and makes a difference. Do you want to win most unified team meetings title or win football games? It’s not easy to answer. Coaches tend to lean towards having the most subservient players.
Pettis could land great or he could land terribly, for fantasy, in an NFL deal this week (if it happens).
I’m hearing little birdies chirping on a Pettis-Clowney deal structure, but the 49ers are not desperate for a pass rusher and Bill O’Brien would not like Pettis’s aura either.
I have four other Pettis connections/landing spots to discuss…and one of them will knock your FF-socks off. But I’m saving them for tonight’s Video Q&A for subscribers (10pm-11pmET).
The 49ers need O-Line help as much as anything, but a draft pick might do it because the 49ers have a ton of WRs with talent on the depth chart.
-- Mecole Hardman (3-40-0/4) does have NFL+ speed. He clocked it at the NFL Combine, but I didn’t see that uber-speed and confidence on the field at Georgia all that much. He’s bringing the speed in the preseason…I’m impressed with his movement skills, when I didn’t want to be.
I’m not impressed by his WR skills, he still looks raw/sloppy as a receiver. He’s just a speed guy today…but you can make hay with elite speed guys. I’m not as standoffish on Mecole as I was to start the preseason. He’s a work in progress…and the Tyreek handcuff, the generic brand, if you’re into that. He’s not close to Tyreek in skills, but he has some redeeming features.
Watching Hardman in this game hit me with something…
Hardman was bursting with energy, playing fast and bouncing around excited to be there. By contrast, same game, Dante Pettis looked like he’d have rather been anywhere but on that field. He may know he’s leaving soon. Consider that Pettis and ‘attitude’ and ‘prove you’re a #1’ talk has hung over him all summer and in a showcase spot he mailed in a one+ quarter performance.
Pettis made a catch in this game near the SF sidelines and got blasted after the catch, and was sent flailing into his own sideline. It was a bang-bang play and Pettis held onto the ball. He got up at a moderate pace and started jogging back to the field while people around him where excitedly yelling ‘good catch’/’great play’/’that-a-way’ and patting him as he got to his feet and moved towards the field…he never turned back and acknowledged any of it. He wasn’t amped to a new speed by the moment at all. He looked pissed that he had to take a hit for a team he doesn’t want to play for. Just my reading too deep into things…
-- Matt Breida (7-44-0, 2-31-1/2) made a beautiful diving catch in the end zone for a TD in this game. You know what that means? The entire SF backfield is now changing momentum for fantasy analysts. Tevin Coleman is dropping and Breida is rising fast in redrafts.
-- IDP note… Dorian O’Daniel (5 tackles) is beyond buried here. His sleeper status is extinguished (has been) until further notice.
-- Let’s end with St. Patrick Mahomes (8-10 for 126 yards, 1 TD/0 INT)…
The best QB performance I’ve seen this preseason. He was flawless. He’s how you want Baker or Kyler or anyone you want to draft to look in a preseason game. He’s even better, more assured than last year. Will his stats go as high? Probably not. I think that because of the schedule (2x with DEN and then has JAX, BAL, LAC, MIN, NE, CHI on the schedule. Weeks 14-15-16…at NE (cold), DEN (cold), at CHI (cold, windy).
How bad do you want that for fantasy going into the playoffs? Might be fine…might be that he negates the top defenses with his abilities.
I like Baker’s number tally ability more this year, at a cheaper ADP, and the computer likes the CLE schedule a bit better but make no mistake…all things being equal…Mahomes is the best, most talented QB in the NFL/fantasy and will possibly be the greatest in history (Baker has a shot too). You can’t go wrong with Mahomes in 2019. It might be a slightly bumpy ride in schedule spots this year, but he may plow right over that.
I like Baker with Freddie Kitchens WAY more than Mahomes with Andy Reid, but with KC’s lack of a running game and weak defense – Mahomes may have to throw 50 TD passes again to try to win the title.
I can get super savvy with schedule interpretations and various nuisances and ADPs and I like Baker for my NFL team more than Mahomes, but this game was a reminder to me – Mahomes is probably the best in the fantasy business still at this stage. He is the ‘best in class’ passer in fantasy/the NFL until someone proves otherwise.
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