NEW ROTOWORLD BETA SITE

Ryan McDowell

Fantasy Roundtable

print article archives RSS

Roundtable: Fast Starters

Friday, October 12, 2018


Ryan McDowell (@RyanMc23)Last week, we covered some of the league’s slow starters and this week, we’re taking a look at the other side. One of the most difficult tasks of fantasy players in the season’s first several weeks is determining if a surprising player is “for real.” Making a move to acquire these players in trade or from the waiver wire can make or break your season.

Each of these players is current top 12 scorers at their position and can be considered a surprise, but can they keep it up?

Isaiah Crowell
James White
TJ Yeldon
Cooper Kupp
Austin Hooper
Jared Cook

Which of these players are you most confident in keeping up this early season pace? On the other hand, which player would you consider fools gold?

 

John Daigle (@notJDaigle): We should note that even if Austin Hooper weren’t able to ‘keep it up’, he’s still pretty much a weekly starter. Just look at the TE rankings this year. Will Dissly didn’t even play last week and he’s still TE13!

This one has several answers, actually. I’m sure we all consider Isaiah Crowell’s 200-yard day fool’s gold, but he’s not going away, either. Bilal Powell has been favored more of late, out-snapping Crowell 70-45 over the last two games in particular, but it’s the latter who’s still received 10 carries to Powell’s six inside the 20. On the other hand, T.J. Yeldon isn’t going away in the interim with just shaky-kneed 31-year-old Jamaal Charles behind him, but he’ll eventually slip into irrelevancy the moment Leonard Fournette returns.

If I had to simply stamp a player and call it a day, I think it’s obvious Cooper Kupp isn’t going away as long as coach Sean McVay exists. The Rams have honed their target tree to only include the Big Four (Kupp, Robert Woods, Brandin Cooks, Todd Gurley) and typically run out all on every single play. His recent concussion is legitimately the only thing keeping Kupp from being an every-week starter moving forward. Those three receivers will take turns having the higher scoring days, but it’s possible one (if not all) pop up in the top-10 at their position every week from here on out. That obviously includes Kupp.


Jesse Pantuosco (@JessePantuosco)I don’t see New England going away from James White anytime soon. When Tom Brady speaks, the Pats usually listen. After losing to Detroit in Week 3, Brady publicly campaigned for White to see more touches. And that’s exactly what’s happened as White has turned 28 touches into 189 yards and three touchdowns over the past two games. He’s been PPR gold, ranking top three among running backs in catches (32), targets (44), receiving yards (270) and receiving touchdowns (four). That’s not by accident. The Pats are at their best when they’re utilizing their short passing game and that begins with White and Julian Edelman in the slot. With Rex Burkhead on IR, White has almost zero competition for pass-catching duties out of the backfield (Sony Michel has been targeted just six times in four games). Touchdown regression is inevitable but White’s passing-game usage should remain steady, giving him a safe RB2 floor in PPR leagues. 

 

I still can’t bring myself to trust Isaiah Crowell. He’s always had a streaky side to him and we’ve seen that the past two weeks with Crowell following up a goose egg in Week 4 (zero yards on four carries) with a 219-yard explosion in Week 5. Crowell’s 6.84 yards per carry is impressive, but it’s also a bit deceptive. If you take away two of his touchdown runs—a 62-yarder in Week 1 and a 77-yarder last week—that average drops all the way down to 4.56. And here’s my other issue with Crowell—he’s still splitting work with Bilal Powell. In fact, Powell has actually out-touched him for the season (69-63). Crowell’s saving grace is that he seems to have a monopoly on the Jets’ goal-line work (five touchdowns to Powell’s one). That keeps him in play as a weekly RB3/flex, though if you’re counting on him for anything more than that, I think you’re barking up the wrong tree.



Patrick Daugherty (@RotoPat): Cooper Kupp is going to keep it up. The volume will not go away in this offense, and he's once again one of the league's most-targeted players in the red zone. He gets big play opportunities as the Rams' offense is designed so well and so multi-dimensional that its receivers are routinely running literally wide open.

 
I also trust Cook to maintain this pace. He's going to remain boom or bust, but he's caught at least four passes every game and the shaky nature of the Raiders' defense means they will never stop throwing on offense. 
 
I agree with Jesse on James White. The Pats' backfield got much narrower following Rex Burkhead's injury and White and Brady are BFFs. 
 
 
Raymond Summerlin (@RMSummerlin): I agree completely with Jesse about Crowell. There have been 10 runs of 50 or more yards this season after Saquon Barkley broke one on Thursday night. Crowell has three of those, and those runs make up 49.5 percent of his rushing yards and 40 percent of his touchdowns, meaning plays which are unlikely to happen again make up a large part of his production so far. It has to be noted Crowell has been good for a couple big plays every season so far in his career, so it is not surprising he has chipped in a few this year. That does not mean it is likely he will be able to regularly boost his fantasy performances with long runs moving forward, and we have seen his extremely low floor when those plays or goal-line touchdowns do not materialize. I view Crowell the same way I did before the explosion; an upside RB3/FLEX type who you are hesitant to put in your lineup. I am happy to sell if someone is offering more than that based on the big performance. Austin Ekeler is a similar player to me, although he does have the added handcuff value. 


Ryan McDowell is a senior writer for dynastyleaguefootball.com. You can follow him on Twitter @RyanMc23.
Email :Ryan McDowell



Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days



Video Center

  •  
    Dose: Gordon Eyes Wk 16 Return

    Dose: Gordon Eyes Wk 16 Return
  •  
    NBA Waiver Picks

    NBA Waiver Picks
  •  
    Dose: Gurley, Gordon update

    Dose: Gurley, Gordon update
  •  
    Dose: Henry does it again

    Dose: Henry does it again
  •  
    Player News: Week 15

    Player News: Week 15
  •  
    Player on the Rise: Samuel

    Player on the Rise: Samuel
  •  
    Matchups: Mixon/Cooks/Samuels

    Matchups: Mixon/Cooks/Samuels
  •  
    Dose: Chargers Shock Chiefs

    Dose: Chargers Shock Chiefs