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You might think a fantasy ‘Rewind’ report on Jalen Ramsey will be boring-ish especially if you don’t play IDP. Many longer time readers likely understand that Ramsey is talented and probably a threat to your opposing WR1 facing him – since I spent most of the 2016 season talking about Ramsey as the Rookie of the Year (along with Dak). What Dak Prescott did as a rookie QB was freaky, unusual. Ramsey can claim the same – who walks into the league and becomes a shutdown corner right away?
I will say this to my grave – had Dallas drafted Ramsey instead of Ezekiel Elliott, they would have been hoisting a Super Bowl trophy last year. Everyone celebrating Elliott and ignoring the miss on Ramsey is the height of football analysts not paying attention to anything, and having no understanding of positional values, etc. in the NFL. Someday, Dallas fans will look back with regret that the team didn’t draft Ramsey ahead of Elliott. But Elliott did jump into a giant Salvation Army kettle after a TD run, so that was so hilarious…worth a lot in wins and losses.
Back to Ramsey… Was he really as good as I said that he was in 2016? Is he just ‘good’…or is he a true shutdown corner? If he is a shutdown corner then there are serious reverberations for fantasy because of it…
1) If Ramsey is a true shutdown corner, then your #1 WR you love so much for fantasy is in trouble the week he faces Ramsey. For T.Y. Hilton, DeAndre Hopkins, and maybe Corey Davis...it’s even worse because they get him twice a season.
You do know the Jags’ pass defense was third in the league in yards per game allowed, right?
2) If Ramsey is a shutdown corner, then you better take the entire Jags DST seriously in 2017. They signed A.J. Bouye and Barry Church in the offseason. Jacksonville may have the best secondary in the NFL after Denver and maybe New England. The Jags might have a surprisingly good/great fantasy DST this season.
I went back and looked at a few specific games of Ramsey’s 2016, not his entire season. Why not all of it? I only needed to see him work against better QB-WR combos. Watching Ramsey hold down DeAndre Hopkins with Brock Osweiler at QB does nothing for me as a scout…because Osweiler is godawful. I only looked at games I felt were a challenge for Ramsey, and honestly there weren’t that many. I got a twinge of ‘maybe I’m overblowing Ramsey‘ when I looked over his schedule from 2016…a lot of bad QBs he had the luxury of facing.
I settled on watching Ramsey’s midseason game with Indy (not the Week 17 one). His game against Alshon Jeffrey (one of Ramsey’s worst, statistically). His game against Nick Foles/KC…did he cover Tyreek Hill or Jeremy Maclin? Finally, his game against Oakland…Carr/Cooper.
I’ll report notes of each game in the order I watched them…