Lukewarm Week 9 fantasy recap: Luck's lacerated fantasy stock
This week was a saddy, you guys. Real sad. Word on the street is that Andrew Luck has a lacerated kidney, which sounds TERRIFYING. “Lacerated” is a horrifying word and I hope I never have to hear it used in conversation ever again.
The weirdest part of this week, football-wise, was that all the bad games turned out to be really fun. The Packers looked like a chicken with its head lacerated off in the first half, but then almost came all the way back. Matt Cassel and the Eagles teamed up to spawn an overtime thriller. The Colts unexpectedly brought the Broncos crashing back to earth. Chicago and San Diego, whose collective records undoubtedly made the Monday Night Football producers tentatively Google the cost of Seinfeld reruns, actually turned in a solid comeback victory for the home crowd! Sure, yes, the game was technically in San Diego.
For all the fantasy griping, it’s been a fun season so far. We’ve got three undefeated teams left, two of whom don’t feel gross to root for, and all the bottom feeders are playing fun, competitive games or (looking at YOU, AFC South) still in playoff contention! Even the Raiders have four wins already! FOUR!
It was a massacre out there.
Big Ben is out for a few weeks again. Teddy Bridgewater got low-key assassinated. And saddest of all, Andrew Luck is out for 2-6 weeks, which means it’s time to grab a hobo bindle and jump on the surprisingly still-chugging Blaine Gabbert/Derek Carr hype trains. Of course, it’s very possible at this point that both of those guys have been taken already, so you might have to settle for the enthusiasm handcart powered by Sam Bradford and Matt Cassel. Sadness on wheels!
Marcus Mariota is back too, I guess, but I’ve been burned before. It’s well established now that anyone can throw for four TDs against the Saints. That defense is an effective charity organization for quarterbacks in need a confidence boost.
God, it’s been a rough enough year for QBs already. The QB crisis has been well-documented, but watching Andrew Luck get slowly ripped to pieces is still brutal. He has a LACERATED KIDNEY! How does that even happen?? Bridgewater will undoubtedly play again sooner rather than later, but boy, try watching that hit without feeling uncomfortable. He’s definitely passed out. It’s like looking at a Bills fan after an hour of tailgating.
Dion Lewis got sent to the farm upstate, which means LeGarrette Blount is gonna reap the fantasy benefits, right? WRONG. This is fantasy football, and fantasy football hates you. And Bill Belichick hates you even more. A quick scan of the Pats depth chart reveals one James White sitting just out of sight, waiting to vulture at least three touchdowns. Of course, now that I’ve attempted to outwit this dumb game, fate will intervene in some other absurd fashion. Watch Belichick bring in a fullback or something. Football is stupid.
Notice how every team with an awesome record right now is doing it without a identifiable feature back? Cincy has had a few okay games with Jeremy Hill, but Gio Bernard is still getting significant carries. The Pats have done the coin-flip thing. The Broncos aren’t scoring points, and the Panthers just let Cam do everything. It’s like these teams don’t care about fantasy football at ALL.
DeAngelo Williams continued killing it as Le’Veon Bell’s replacement, which feels like an unfair break for the Steelers this season. Good thing their QB is out too, amirite? In the three games DeAngelo’s gotten 20 carries or more, he’s averaged just under 25 fantasy points per game. That’s awesome production! But I’m curious if that’s a case of the Steelers managing to amass stud running backs or if the offensive line just makes them look good. We’ll find out this week, when, unfazed by the Landry Jones aerial threat, Cleveland puts 15 guys in the box.
Jeremy Langford, who hadn’t run for more than 21 yards in any one game this year before Week 7, piled up 140-plus all purpose yards and a TD this week. I give up.
Antonio Brown caught 17 passes this week, which is bonkers. That accounted for a team-record 284 yards, which is bonkers-ER. Oakland did a solid job of letting everyone score this week. Just like your mom! Kidding. I’m sorry. Please, don’t hurt me.
Julio Jones also did his thing this week, but you knew that. Julio Jones is TOO effective, which is boring. I’m rooting for everyone to fail at this point. Julio Jones should strive to be more like Sammy Watkins, who rose from the dead this week for only the third time this year. He’s been feast or famine all season, sandwiching TD games in between four games with ZERO points and one game with just three. In short, he’s the perfect fantasy player. In an ideal universe, every player is Sammy Watkins, and nobody is happy.
T.Y. Hilton was cleared to play at what feels like the last possible second, which sucks. This sport has sucked the fun out of personnel announcements. I should be HAPPY that Indy fielded their full receiving corps! It should be EXCITING that someone gets to play! But that announcement set off an avalanche of grumbling on Twitter and caused me to throw a spoon. I shouldn’t have to pick up that spoon. That spoon is T.Y. Hilton’s fault.
If the season continues on its current trajectory, the Bengals will meet the Patriots in the AFC title game en route to a big feature piece on Tyler Eifert. He’s got 9 TDs, is about to match his rookie season stats at the halfway point of the season, and is, I’m pretty sure, the reason Cincy is undefeated so far. It’s a fun story, and he’s making Andy Dalton a better QB, and he’ll subsequently have 2 catches for 17 yards as Gronk scores 4 TDs and the Patriots win by 17. Yay, football!
PERSON WHO USED TO BE GOOD
I TOLD you. I TOLD you Vernon Davis wasn’t going to be effective for Denver. HA. I got something RIGHT for once.
PERSON WHO IS STILL GOOD
I feel like we don’t give Darren McFadden enough credit for still being alive at this point. He’s racked up 300-plus yards in the past 3 weeks, which, granted, is the direct result of the Cowbays searching for QBs in the $5 DVD bin at Best Buy. But STILL. This guy survived Oakland, people. He’s a war hero.
PERSON AT WHOM YOU SHOULD CREEPILY TWEET A THANK-YOU
The Falcons PR team, for this gem:
Sure, they lost the game, somewhat validating the anonymous tipster. But still, credit where credit is due. Not enough good Twitter beef these days.
Have a good week, y’all.