Enamored With The Name, Can’t Play The Game

Today on ESPN’s Fantasy Focus Football Podcast, Matthew Berry brought up an interesting view on certain players who are struggling this year.  His wife is in a fantasy football league, which is a 10-team league.  She asked him the other day something like, “Doug Martin has been terrible this year, I want to drop him”.  Martin was a high first round pick this year, and fantasy owners expected a big 2nd year from the Tampa Bay running back.  He has failed to impress so far this year, and when asked the question, Mr. Berry had no legitimate response as to why she should keep him.  (Note that information just came out that Doug Martin is done for the year, so he is actually now drop-able in all leagues).

Lets compare player A to player B…

Player A- 179 Rushing Yards, 190 receiving yards, 2 total TDs = 48 Fantasy Points

Player B- 456 Rushing Yards, 66 Rushing yards, 1 total TD, 1 lost fumble = 55 Fantasy Points

Obviously if you are just going to go by points you are taking player B, but when you factor in that player A’s workload was relatively zero at the start of the year and his workload has been increasing, you can make the argument player A’s upside is worth taking over player B.  Player A is Andre Ellington, who is available in 53% of Yahoo leagues. (Player B is Doug Martin, surprise!)

Of course, you don’t want to drop Doug Martin due to the potential, but he is getting the workload, and yet he isn’t producing.

Let’s take a look at some more examples…

Player A-  362 Rushing Yards , 36 Passing Yards , 1TD

Player B- 366 Rushing Yards, 137 Receiving Yards, 1 TD

Player A has been banged up pretty much all year and appears to be trying to play injured.  Both players are in a time share for their respective teams, but obviously one player is seeing more production receiving.  Player A is CJ Spiller, who was a 1st round draft pick.  Player B is Bilal Powell, who is owned in 74% of leagues.  Andre Ellington was mentioned above, and he has out produced CJ Spiller to this point…

Player A- 1723 Passing Yards, 8 Passing TDs, 11 Interceptions, 146 Rushing Yards with 2 Rushing TDs and 3 Lost Fumbles

Player B- 1708 Passing Yards, 8 Passing TDs, 5 Interceptions, 2 Rushing Yards, 3 Lost Fumbles

This one isn’t even close, so you have to feel that player B is the guy who is the disappointment.  Player A is Geno Smith, who’s shaping out to be a decent fantasy QB option when you factor in his production on the ground.  Player B?  Tom Brady.

Player A- 16 Catches, 247 Receiving Yards, 3 TDs

Player B- 24 Catches, 324 Receiving Yards, 1 TD

Player A’s statistics are not as strong, but he has started to come out as the #2 option for the passing offense.  Player B was supposed to be the #2 option, but for some reason has been sub par.  Player A is Marvin Jones of Cincinnati, and player B is Marques Colston of New Orleans.  Jones is available in 98% of yahoo leagues.

I am not suggesting to drop these players.  They were drafted with the intention to be solid contributors to your fantasy teams, but so far they have fallen short.  There are probably better options on the waiver wire, but you have to find a way to either replace your bench players in the starting roles for these guys until they produce or make some trades to improve your team.  I just find it interesting how someone’s name can factor in to your decision on a game where numbers are all that matters.


Ryan Jackson

About Ryan Jackson

My name is Ryan Jackson and I love fantasy sports. I graduated from the University of Maine in 2014 with a degree in Journalism, and I am now a graduate student at Quinnipiac University working on a sports journalism degree.