Frascella’s Fantasy Corner: Dak Prescott and the Devastating Nature of Fantasy Football
Fantasy football can be demoralizing. It can knock the wind clean out of you.
I went into Monday Night Football with an 8-point lead, with Latavius Murray vs. Wil Lutz. It was a back-and-forth battle, until Lutz’s late extra point put my opponent up by a fractional point. I was toast.
Toast, yes… until Michael Badgley’s potential game-winning field goal doinked off the goal post. Overtime. New life, yes!
In OT, with 7:19 to go and the Saints driving, Drew Brees dropped back to pass – under pressure, he dumped off to… Latavius Murray! I began to laugh at my good fortune, as we all know Lat isn’t much of a pass-catcher (those duties usually fall on Alvin Kamara’s sturdy shoulders). The lead was now mine. In OT, there are no extra points. All I needed was for the Saints to cap their GW drive with a touchdown. They were cruising up the field with little-to-no opposition.
Then, a short pass to…Josh Hill? Another bizarre running play from Taysom Hill? And finally, an unceremonious incomplete pass to Emmanuel Sanders, after Brees was flushed out of the pocket.
On came Lutz for the go-ahead field goal, and that was that. All that drama for nothing. I lost by a fraction, to fall to 2-3 on the season.
All that said, I’d love to hear your war stories, too! Always feel free to shoot your bad beats and devastating defeats over to me @LegendSports7 on Twitter. I know we all need to vent out these extremely frustrating losses.
Speaking of frustrating, devastating and demoralizing… how about Dak Prescott? What an absolute nightmare. I just feel so terrible for the guy. One of the saddest and most ill-timed disasters I’ve ever seen on a football field. All of us here at Aaron Torres Online are wishing him a speedy and full recovery. We can’t wait to see you back out there next season, Dak!
Potential Pickups for Week 6
Andy Dalton, Cowboys: Speaking of Prescott, of course we have to address “The Red Rocket” now. In the grand scheme, I guess you could say Dalton is a “starting quarterback in the NFL.” What I mean by that is, there are 32 teams, and depending on whom you ask, Dalton is gonna rank in the top 32 on most lists. He’s a savvy vet, and clearly Jerry Jones and the Cowboys have positioned themselves well with a solid backup, here. In fantasy, I could see Dalton ranking somewhere from 13-to-17, going forward. I don’t think he is great, but Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup, Dalton Schultz and Zeke Elliott sure do help. If Dallas’ O-line holds up, Dalton will be a solid play in Superflex leagues, and matchup-dependent in streaming 1 QB leagues.
C.J. Beathard, 49ers: Obviously we’re talkin’ Superflex or 2 QB leagues, here. I mean, what the heck is going on with Jimmy Garoppolo? Who knows if he will be healthy and reinstalled as the starting QB as we progress along in this bizarre NFL season? With that in mind, Beathard is worth a look as a possible QB3 and mix-and-match guy for bye week pivots. Right now I expect Jimmy G to play this week, but who knows how effective he will be?
Alexander Mattison, Vikings: Straight up… I tweeted that this kid might be a top-10 running back in the NFL. We’ve seen it all along with him – any time he gets an extended opportunity, he shines with strength, speed and physicality. Kid is a bruiser. He seems to have it all out there. Obviously, we have to monitor the long-term ramifications of Dalvin Cook’s injury. He could be back much sooner than later, which will limit Mattison’s upside for the long haul of the season. In a vacuum, though, Mattison is a beast.
Mike Boone, Vikings: We’re talkin’ 16-team leagues, here (14 if you are really desperate). Boone is probably the best third-string running back in the game. He’s more of a stash than anything else. Like Mattison, ya gotta like the way he runs downhill with power and fierce determination.
La’Michal Perine, Jets: Le’Veon Bell has been released. Frank Gore should operate as the RB1 in the short-term, but Perine obviously has extra Dynasty value now. Pick him up as a stash, especially in deeper formats.
Matt Breida, Dolphins: Nothing special, here, but Jordan Howard was a healthy scratch. Breida’s role has been expanding slightly, and I suppose it could continue to expand. Just keep a watchful eye on him.
Chase Claypool, Steelers: Every time you flipped on NFL Redzone, Claypool was dancing into the endzone. It was just one of those magical days for the rookie. Four touchdowns, and Big Ben was really looking for him after Diontae Johnson exited the game due to injury. Obviously, monitor Diontae’s injury, here. That’s the key to everything. Claypool is a very good young player anyway, but we wanna maximize his possible looks and opportunities. If Diontae isn’t at 100% health, that gives Claypool more staying power from a fantasy perspective. He’s big, long, athletic and makes himself available in space to his future Hall of Fame quarterback.
Travis Fulgham, Eagles: This kid went absolutely berserk with 10 catches for 152 yards and a touchdown. Again, we have a situation that is dependent on injuries, here. We love Fulgham’s tenacity and feistiness – sort of like his hard-working teammate Greg Ward – but we just have to continue to monitor veterans DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery. Fulgham is worth a look either way because those vets can never seem to remain healthy, anyway.
Mecole Hardman, Chiefs: Will already be rostered in some leagues, but the Sammy Watkins injury opens up the door even more for the young speedster. Snatch him up where you still can.
Henry Ruggs, Raiders: Came back strong with 118 yards and a touchdown. We know what he does – he runs streak routes and burns past slower-footed corners. He’s a boom-or-bust rookie for now.
Christian Kirk, Cardinals: Has fully emerged as the Cardinals’ clear WR2 now. Definitely worth a look in all formats, but particularly in Dynasty for the long haul.
Week 6 DFS Plays
Safe: Aaron Rodgers $7,500 @ TB
Sleeper: Ryan Fitzpatrick $5,900 vs. NYJ
Perfect Storm: Matthew Stafford $6,300 @ JAX
Summary: Rodgers has been smokin’ hot, and he’ll “play up” for the big showdown with fellow Hall of Famer Tom Brady.
Safe: Mike Davis $7,000 vs. CHI
Sleeper: Devonta Freeman $4,900 vs. WAS
Perfect Storm: Jonathan Taylor $6,400 vs. CIN
Summary: Devonta Freeman has really been turning back the clock. This salary is hard to ignore in a hotly-contested division rivalry.
Safe: Adam Thielen $7,300 vs. ATL
Sleeper: Brandin Cooks $5,000 @ TEN
Perfect Storm: Allen Robinson $7,000 @ CAR
Summary: Cooks came out of nowhere for a monster game this past week. It’s time to try to ride the hot hand.
Safe: Jonnu Smith $5,200 vs. HOU
Sleeper: Trey Burton $3,100 vs. CIN
Perfect Storm: Evan Engram $4,900 vs. WAS
Summary: Mo Alie-Cox is currently Questionable, so definitely keep an eye on Burton at just $3,100.
Best of luck to all!
John Frascella is a published sports author and fantasy football analyst with over two decades of experience. Follow him on Twitter @LegendSports7 for all things fantasy football.