Archive for 6221

NEWS: Antonio Cromartie (ankle) and Chris Long (ankle) both active for Week 15 Thursday Night Football.

SMITTY: This will be an interesting game, but hopefully it isn’t super-low scoring. Tre Mason will have tough running ahead of him, but is still a strong flex play this week. Larry Fitzgerald (probable) and Michael Floyd (and John Brown) are all risky plays given their inconsistency and given how dominant that Rams defense has been the last two weeks. Kerwynn Williams is a risky play, but decent flex. He could get most of the carries in this one, but it’s always a risk playing a ‘hot hand’ type player. Arians loves this kid, though.Looking for Week 15 Power Rankings?

NEWS: Tre Mason ready to shine; Zac Stacy still a good buy-low despite Mason rising?

SMITTY: Look, it’s Tre Mason time, and no one is more excited than I am. I have been Mason’s biggest supporter since January, and I think he will go nuts moving forward, but now is a time to buy-low on Zac Stacy. This is especially the case for those that own just Mason, as you can lock in both backs, and Stacy won’t even command flex-type value. He isn’t even starting. He is now a back-up, so trade for him at that basement price. Why do I say this now, the moment Mason is getting unleashed? Well, for starters, Stacy is still a very good RB, and the duo makes for one solid option. Two, coach Jeff Fisher just recently said “it’ll be a week-to-week thing” at the running back position, and he even said: “Zac could get 25 carries this week.” Stacy won’t likely sniff double-digit carries let alone five, but the point is, nothing is for sure, especially decisions by coaches, and Stacy has enough appeal to go get at his rock-bottom pricing. All that aside, I can’t wait to see Mason run… don’t screw this up, Fisher! Looking for Week 8 Power Rankings?

NEWS: Zac Stacy the Rams top RB.

According to ESPN, Rams RB Zac Stacy is slotted to be the Rams’ RB1 heading into Week 1.

SMITTY: While Benny Cunningham is a talented rusher, and the same can be said about Tre Mason, the starting gig in St. Louis is Zac Stacy’s to lose, and he isn’t on a short leash or anything… Cunningham starting the last preseason game sure caused some rumors to surface – We fully expect Stacy to have a strong 2014 just as long as he is healthy. Looking for Week 1 Power Rankings?

NEWS: Sam Bradford done for season with torn ACL says new reports.

According to multiple reports, Rams QB Sam Bradford is done for the season with a torn ACL.

SMITTY: It looks like early reports that he was ok were off. This is bad news for Zac Stacy and that Rams rushing attack, as defenses will be focusing on stopping the run. Shaun Hill will take over as the team’s passer. Look for this to affect some Week 1 Power Rankings.

NEWS: Benny Cunningham gets the start over Zac Stacy; a message or just preseason football?

Rams RB Benny Cunningham got the start in Saturday’s preseason game; Zac Stacy came off the bench.

SMITTY: The only reason we’re reporting on this is because it’s out there and needs to be addressed. Is Benny Cunningham good and could he be the team’s No. 2 rusher this year? Yes and yes. No question, he is a talented rusher. But, this ‘coming off the bench’ situation is preseason football and Jeff Fisher wanted to see Cunningham roll with the first unit. Unless Stacy falters, or gets hurt, early on in 2014, the job is his to lose. Cunningham might have the edge on Tre Mason for the team’s top backup job, though, which is something I hate to admit given how much I love Mason. For now, Benny appears to be Stacy’s handcuff, but that could change in a snap. Looking for Week 1 Power Rankings?

NEWS: Zac Stacy the uncontested starter in STL; Tre Mason has major dynasty appeal?

According to reports, rookie RB Tre Mason has improved his blitz pickups as of late.

SMITTY: This might sound contradictory, but I like both Zac Stacy and Tre Mason right now, hence the combo is a very, very strong RB2 in all formats. Stacy should have a kung-fu grip on the starting gig heading into 2014, and he might very well hang onto the job all year, that’s how solid the kid is. That said, Mason has been my No. 1-ranked rookie rusher (based on talent and upside) since January, and that hasn’t changed. He just needs a shot and I think the talent will shine through. Again, the combo is the way to go if you plan on investing in Stacy in all formats, and a crafty non-Stacy dynasty owner will look to acquire just Mason on the cheap while his value has dipped to an all-time low. Looking for Week 1 Power Rankings?

NEWS: Tre Mason gets a lot of run in preseason opener.

In Friday night’s preseason opener, Rams RB Tre Mason ran the ball 15 times for 51 yards against the Saints.

SMITTY: Zac Stacy will enter 2014 as the uncontested starter, and that’s the way it should be, he proved himself last year. But, crafty fantasy owners, as well as all Stacy dynasty owners, will take advantage of the worn-off buzz that is Tre Mason. He sits behind Benny Cunningham right now on the team’s depth chart, and there have been all kinds of “he’s a change of pace back” reports surfacing all off-season. Look, he’s a risk, as there is that chance that St. Louis doesn’t see him as an every-down back. That we can’t control as fantasy football owners. All we can do is evaluate talent first off, then try to anticipate what coaches are thinking and hope that they see gems like we do (the fantasy football owners of the world). Mason is a gem, and while there is no guarantee he will ever rise to the starting line-up in St. Louis, I’m buying low everywhere I can, because he is super-cheap right now. I just drafted him in the 11th-round in an expert keeper league draft (that is still ongoing). The 11th! That’s just about zero-risk territory right there, and he has the skill set to be elite. He just needs the chance. Looking for Full-Season Zac Stacy Projections?

Article: 2014 Rookie Rankings & Analysis

smitty staffIt’s late July, so it’s time to reevaluate the 2014 Fantasy Football Rookies. Below is a one-player taste of our Premium 2014 Rookie Rankings with Analysis, so if you aren’t a 2014 STARTERS Subscriber, get access right after you read this sample (who is #5 on our Rookie Rankings)… after you read this, there are 11 more rookie write-ups just like it waiting for you, along with a complete ranking of my top 50 rookies… here we go!

5. Jordan Matthews | PHI WR

Date: 7/24/14

This 2014 rookie receiving class is just flat-out phenomenal, as we are talking about the 4th receiver ranked, and this receiver can be a fantasy WR1 if he develops properly. Jordan Matthews is 6-3, 212 pounds, but he plays like he is 6-5, 225 pounds. He has a long reach and has phenomenal spacial awareness. View this exact play right here to see what I mean… if you watched that play, you should have noticed not only Matthews’ timing pulling in the reception, but his innate ability to use his body to defend the area around the football. It’s an instinct most players don’t develop until their second or third NFL season, but Matthews has a natural instinct to use his body to position the defender where he wants the defender. It’s masterful if you take the time to watch him in acton. Like Brandin Cooks, Matthews couldn’t have landed in a more potent offense. And, in Matthews’ case, the Eagles are in need of a big-time possession receiver, and it appears Chip Kelly is going to immediately lean on the rookie. Don’t be surprised if Matthews makes a strong case for Rookie of the Year in 2014! It wouldn’t be shocking if the guy pulled in 55-60 receptions for 900-1000 yards and 6-7 scores as a rookie. The rookie receiver position is changing, and these guys are maturing much faster than they use to.



View All 2014 Rookie Rankings & Analysis

NEWS: Zac Stacy to lose touches to Tre Mason?

According to ESPN’s Nick Wagoner, Rams rookie RB Tre Mason could get 8-10 carries per game in 2014, but he’d be surprised if the rookie took the starting job from starter Zac Stacy.

SMITTY: The writer also goes on to say that Zac Stacy had some nagging injuries in 2013, and if that continues, Tre Mason’s role would expand. It’s no secret that Mason was my top-ranked rookie runner heading into the 2014 NFL Draft, but Stacy is a solid rusher, so that makes this situation tough to examine. I think it boils down to health, as Wagoner writes in the article. If Stacy can stay on the field in 2014, he might keep his job. If he doesn’t, Mason could be forced to mature fast and showcase his skill set. As for the future, I think Mason has an elite skill set, so my advice to all Stacy dynasty owners is to go get Mason now before he has a chance to dance. See where we have Stacy ranked heading into Week 1.

NEWS: Devonta Freeman being groomed as future starter in ATL?

According to ESPN, Falcons RB Steven Jackson enters 2014 as the team’s starter, but the Falcons plan is to groom rookie Devonta Freeman as the future three-down back.

SMITTY: While we still need to see Devonta Freeman take an NFL snap, he is a promising young rookie running back. He isn’t a big runner, as he stands 5-8, 206 pounds, but the position is changing. Smaller backs are the new trend, and I firmly believe Atlanta will give Freeman every opportunity to grab the starting gig by mid-season (if not sooner). Freeman looks like one of the better rookie rushers for 2014, even if some rookie rushers have more long-term upside. If you ask me, Tre Mason is the most talented rookie in this 2014 rookie running back class, but he has Zac Stacy, a top 8-12 caliber fantasy/NFL rusher, sitting in front of him. Now, despite Stacy being a serious talent, I eventually see Mason thriving in this league. Bishop Sankey is really the only rookie rusher walking into a better immediate situation than Freeman. Terrence West, my second favorite rusher from this 2014 rookie class, has Ben Tate (potenital top 10 fantasy rusher this year) sitting in front of him, and Carlos Hyde still has Frank Gore and still-promising Marcus Lattimore sitting in front of him. West and Hyde will both likely thrive in time, maybe even as soon as 2015, but Freeman has strong immediate upside entering this upcoming season. Our 2014 fantasy football cheat sheets are 2014-ready, so see where all these guys rank!