Here you are, intrepid Fantasy Owner. You have reached the very pinnacle of fantasy sports. You are playing in the Fantasy Football Championship week.
Kudos and accolades to you, dear friend. You are what all of us endeavor to be. So how are you going to move forward? Do you make changes? Do you stay the course?
Many of these decisions are made based off the advice that gets pumped out every week. But are these opinions legit? Or are they overblown reactions? Well, good friends, if you don’t know where this is heading by now, I don’t know what to say.
Welcome to Truth or Bogus, the Fantasy Championship Edition. Let’s get started right away.
Leonard Fournette Can’t Be Trusted
TRUTH – I don’t know what is going on in Jacksonville, but it doesn’t point to huge outputs from their leading RB.
Fournette put up a second-straight dud following his suspension, mustering 46 yards on 11 carries and added 18 more yards on 3 catches. Fournette only saw a single carry in the single half, allowing unknown David Williams take 5 carries for 32 yards. When asked why that happened, coach Doug Marrone claimed that Williams had a good practice, and they wanted to see what he could do.
The move is just the tip of the iceberg for Jacksonville, whose season has spiraled into near-unthinkable depths following some serious preseason hype. It would seem like the most logical course of action would be to see what their now-healthy former 4th overall pick can do. But apparently, that’s not in the cards.
Fournette’s season has been, overall, disappointing. Even when he hasn’t been injured, he has rushed for just 3.5 Yards Per Carry. With his injury problems and his ineffectiveness, it seems that the Jaguars are haphazardly grasping at straws. The latest straw being Williams.
This is a mess and one that threatens Fournette’s value moving forward. He’s no longer a lock for 15+ touches, and should be treated as a shaky RB2, and can be benched in favor of higher upside options for fantasy championship hopefuls.
Damien Williams Will Draw the Start if Ware Returns
BOGUS – Damien Williams enjoyed some solid success in his spot start with Spencer Ware on the shelf, but if Ware can go, he’s going to get featured.
The big reason for this is less about on-field performance and is all about the Chiefs considering their future at the RB position. They’ve taken a surprising, yet respectable leap by releasing Kareem Hunt following his domestic violence controversy. But unlike some teams that cut ties with volatile players, the Chiefs are right in the middle of a potential Super Bowl run. Beyond that, they also have to consider what happens in the offseason.
Do they try and shed cap space to get in on Le’Veon Bell? Do they take a stab at a thin RB draft in 2019? Do they look to sign a more cost-effective Free Agent RB? Or do they move forward with Ware and/or Williams (Both UFAs after this season)?
The Chiefs plans, in my mind, revolve around finding out exactly what they have in Spencer Ware. He’s the guy that they tapped to lead their team last season before his season-ending injury, he’s the guy they paid to be their starter. The Chiefs don’t have to place any stock in Williams’ strong game, which was bolstered by a couple of wide-open receptions. The Chiefs can turn their attention to his five-season body of mediocre work.
The Chiefs owe it to themselves to give Ware the ball if he’s healthy. Which makes him a solid RB2 against the Seahawks.
Josh Allen is Worth Consideration as a Championship Starter
TRUTH – Honestly, I can’t believe I’m putting these words out there into the internet. I’ve been very much outspoken in my disdain for Josh Allen as a highly touted prospect. But the issues that I have with his real-world NFL performance have been trumped by his fantasy upside.
The biggest cause for this is his ridiculous rushing prowess which honestly came out of practically nowhere. Allen definitely had his share of carries in college, but he never managed better than 3.9 YPC over the course of an entire season. He carried the ball around 10 times per game over the final two years of his college season, which netted him around 30 yards per game.
But now as the QB of a team that’s devoid of rushing options, Allen is rushing for over 50 yards per game and has reached 100 yards in 3 of his last 4 games (OK, technically 99 yards in one of those games). Allen has been exactly as advertised in the passing department, putting up a 52.2% completion rating this season.
However, going up against the Patriots in the fantasy championships, Allen will get the benefit of a bottom-10 pass defense to help placate his poor completion percentage, while he will have to be relied on to scramble for rushing yards while the Bills are potentially starting a fourth-string RB.
Allen’s Bills might not have much to play for, but he’s got the cocky approach that it takes to put his best foot forward against a Patriots team that’s had the Bills’ number over the last 10 years and who is heading to the playoffs yet again.
Nick Foles is Startable in Fantasy
TRUTH – It seems ridiculous that we are back in Week 16 of the NFL season and talking about Nick Foles being a fantasy starter AGAIN. But, that’s the reality.
Look, terrible QBs don’t lead imperfect teams to a Super Bowl. They don’t win the MVP award when they get there. Nick Foles has talent, so get over it. Carson Wentz is still the guy for the Eagles in the long run, but they will hand the reins over to Saint Nick with some confidence here.
Foles might have had a lackluster fantasy performance against the Rams in Week 15, but he tested out as a high-level QB utilizing the eye test and statistically when factoring in his effectiveness against a stout Rams defense. He completed 24-of-31 passes for 270 yards and an interception. What kept this from being a solid Fantasy line was the lack of a TD.
But going up against the Texans in Week 16, Foles has huge upside in a very important game for both squads. The Texans have a bottom-six pass defense this year, and their offense should force Foles and his offense to air it out plenty in order to keep up to Houston.
Foles might be a desperation play, but if you’re being burned constantly by Drew Brees, Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers, Foles might just be worth considering. Please, for your own safety, don’t read that previous sentence more than once.
Josh Gordon Has Played His Last NFL Game
TRUTH – I know that this isn’t really a “Fantasy” take. But I feel I need to close this chapter of my relationship with Josh Gordon.
All this season, I’ve been anti-Flash. I expressed how risky he was, and I pointed out his limitations with the Browns and his crowded corps in New England. I warned against owning him.
So, do I feel good about getting this right? Not a chance.
This is truly a sad day. One that should never have had to come for Josh Gordon, but it has. Gordon is apparently on the verge of yet another drug suspension, and this one is likely to keep him out for the rest of his career.
The system has failed Josh Gordon in a way, but ultimately the responsibility to stay sober rests on his shoulders. That doesn’t make this any less sad. Gordon had the talent to be a Hall of Fame Wide Receiver. Hell, if his rookie season was any indication to what he could have been, he might have been in the conversation of best WR of all time.
But it’s all for naught. Gordon falls in with the likes of Justin Blackmon. A player who had all the talent and opportunity in the world, but just couldn’t walk the straight and narrow while being in the spotlight.
I truly hope Josh Gordon can spend the rest of his young life getting healthy. I hope he rises from this low place and helps the next Josh Gordon walk away from drugs or violence and pursue true greatness. I hope Flash lives a long, healthy life, and finds a way to have a career in football in some way.
But it won’t be as a Wide Receiver. Gordon’s story is over.
Thanks so much for all your support in 2018, readers. Some of us small-time writers plug away, trying to break into a competitive field like fantasy sports writing and it can be a grind. But when we get feedback, or get asked for advice, or get to interact with someone who connects to our message, it’s all worth it.
I wish you all luck in the fantasy championship, and I will see you all in 2019.