Daily Dr. Roto — October 30, 2018
Let’s Make a Deal: Running Backs Edition
Last week I gave you some wide receivers that I wanted you to trade (or trade for) due to their upcoming playoff schedules. In this article, I give you the names of three running backs who should be on your list to acquire—and then I shockingly make a case to trade the best running back in the NFL.
Running Backs to Trade For:
-- Chargers RB Melvin Gordon—I just love how the stars align for Gordon from Week 10 onward. Week 9 is a tough game against Seattle, but after that, he gets Oakland, Denver, Arizona, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Kansas City, and Baltimore. Only the Ravens in Week 16 present a difficult matchup, but by that time you will already be playing in your championship game.
-- Ravens RB Alex Collins—Collins might be my favorite running back to trade for right now. He has had problems fumbling a little which has set him back, but when he’s been given the opportunity, he’s run well. The Ravens play Pittsburgh in Week 9 which is going to be a dirty game, and then they are off on BYE in Week 10. However, after that, Collins has a gem of a schedule. He gets Cincinnati, Oakland, Atlanta, Kansas City, Tampa Bay, and the Chargers—all games that he should be able to have an impact. The best part of trading for Collins is that it won’t cost you much to trade for him. Focus his current owner on the fact that Collins’ next two weeks are bad, and you might be able to get him in a deal pretty easily.
-- Broncos RB Royce Freeman—This call is out of nowhere, but I think there is a definite upside to it. Firstly, Freeman is injured, and you can problem get him for a box of Krispy Kremes from his current owner. Secondly, Phillip Lindsay is playing at a very high level right now. But that is my concern—I wonder if Lindsay can hold up in the second half of the season. Denver is on BYE in Week 10 but from Week 11 on they play: Chargers, Steelers, Bengals, 49ers, Browns, and Raiders—all matchups that the Broncos should be able to exploit with their running game. The Broncos drafted Freeman with the intention of being their primary ball carrier. If they are out of the playoff hunt (which I expect they will be soon), they will need to give Freeman more carries to see if he can be their guy in 2019 and beyond.
Making the case to trade away Todd Gurley:
“Dr. Roto—are you insane? Trade away the number one player in all of Fantasy Football?” While I am not endorsing trading Gurley, I am going to analyze the rest of his schedule to show you why it wouldn’t be the worst idea to consider—but ONLY if you can get a king’s ransom for him. Remember he is TODD GURLEY, and if you move him it must be for a deal that you think can help you win a Fantasy Championship!
Week 9—@New Orleans—The Saints have been incredibly stingy all year against running backs—not one has gotten over 80 yards rushing.
Week 10—Seattle—The Seahawks like to keep the pace of play down by controlling possession. The last time these two teams played in Week 3 Gurley only had 77 yards rushing (albeit with three TDs which are harder to predict).
Week 11—Kansas City—This game should be a good one for Gurley, but I could also argue that the Chiefs will be up by enough points that Goff will have to throw the football more in the second half to keep the game close. That said, this is still a plus matchup for him.
Week 12—BYE Week (comes at a critical time in the Fantasy season)
Week 13—@Detroit—This is a plus matchup for Gurley, but the Lions are a mercurial team. One week they play great defense, and the next week they look toothless.
Week 14—@Chicago—December in Chicago—sound like fun to you? It's going to be a bit chilly, and the Bears have only let up 100+ yards rushing once this season to an opponent (and that was without Khalil Mack).
Week 15—Philadelphia—Say what you will about the Eagles defense, but they have been stellar against the run all season long. They have let up only two rushing TDs all season, and Saquon Barkley has been the only running back of note to excel against them.
Week 16—@Arizona—Congratulations! If you have Gurley and you made it to the Championship game after not losing the last two weeks, you have a Cush game against the Cardinals who have been pathetic stopping the run all season. Hopefully, Gurley goes off for 200 yards, and you win a Fantasy Championship.