That’s it, three weeks down. At this point, you know whether or not you need to make major adjustments to your team. When it comes to fantasy football, it is usually an untimely injury that gives you the most disappointment, but it is unfair to talk about a disappointing season from a player who couldn’t play. What this article is about is discussing the players that have played in the games and have let us down during the first three weeks. This information may help you make decisions when it comes to trading players. After all, there are players that are considered elite who have not had a good first three weeks.
Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco
Jimmy Down! Some of you Seinfeld fans may get that reference, and not going to lie, I was waiting to use that reference at some point during the season. Anyway, Garoppolo went down for the season with an ACL tear. If he had missed the entire week three game, I would have left him off of this list. However, he played the majority of the game, so we have seen him through three weeks of game play. Garoppolo’s rank amongst quarterbacks is 19th and has a completion percentage of 59.6%. You will notice I focus a lot on the completion percentage when it comes to quarterbacks. If a quarterback can keep himself above 65%, it is a good sign that they have what it takes to be a quality quarterback.
Last year when Garoppolo was traded to San Fransisco, he got plugged in right away. He played five full games and part of a sixth. During this time, his completion percentage was 67.4%, which is fantastic and a large part of why he was ranked in the top-10 of quarterbacks in the draft this year. To be fair, two of the first three games this year he had a completion percentage above 65%. However, Garoppolo never got above 300 passing yards in a game. While in 2017, he was able to get above, or nearly to, 300 yards a game in all but one of the five games he started. Garoppolo just hasn’t lived up to the expectations this year. This disappointment could be due to a number of factors, but now that he is out for the season, we have to wait until next year to see if he will bounce back.
Tom Brady, New England
Everyone knows the GOAT, Mr. Brady. He’s the talk of the league. The so called greatest of all time… Mr. four-time Super Bowl MVP, three time league MVP, 13 Pro Bowl appearances, and 15 division titles. But he has been an utter disappointment this year through week 3. Right now, he is the 21st quarterback with 45.2 points, which is a major disappointment if you drafted him. That is if you took him at his ranked value. After all he is the GOAT, why wouldn’t you take him early in the draft? Here is a lesson to all of you when it comes to drafting quarterbacks. There are three top ten lists for quarterbacks that are very telling for 2018 so far:
Top-10 QBs through week 3: Total Yards
1) Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB: 1,230
2) Ben Roethlisberger, PIT: 1,140
3) Drew Brees, NO: 1,078
4) Kirk Cousins, MIN: 965
5) Jared Goff, LAR: 941
6) Derek Carr, OAK: 936
7) Philip Rivers, LAC: 906
8) Matt Ryan, ATL: 897
9) Patrick Mahomes, KC: 896
10) Matthew Stafford, DET: 895
Top-10 QBs through week 3: Pass Attempts
1) Ben Roethlisberger, PIT: 139
2) Kirk Cousins, MIN: 139
3) Matthew Stafford, DET: 135
4) Drew Brees, NO: 129
5) Joe Flacco, BAL: 129
6) Andrew Luck, IND: 124
7) Aaron Rodgers, GB: 116
8) Andy Dalton, CIN: 116
9) Blake Bortles, JAX: 112
10) Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB: 111
Top-10 QBs through week 3: Completion Percentage
1) Drew Brees, NO: 104/129 [80.6%]
2) Derek Carr, OAK: 85/111 [76.6%]
3) Eli Manning, NYG: 81/110 [73.6%]
4) Ryan Tannehill, MIA: 54/74 [73%]
5) Jared Goff, LAR: 71/101 [70.3%]
6) Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB: 78/111 [70.3%]
7) Philip Rivers, LAC: 75/108 [69.4%]
8) Mitchell Trubisky, CHI: 72/104 [69.2%]
9) Alex Smith, WSH: 66/96 [68.8%]
10) Andrew Luck, IND: 85/124 [68.5]
Notice who is off of these lists? Tom Brady, Deshaun Watson, Russell Wilson and Cam Newton; and Aaron Rodgers made it on to only one of these lists (attempts). These are the top five quarterbacks off of the board in the average draft. So, why did you spend such a high draft pick on these guys? At this point, you are more than likely starting your backup quarterback if you took one of these guys, including Tom Brady, who is 19th in completion percentage and attempts, and 25th in total yards. So, until you see some sort of comeback from Tom Brady, you shouldn’t be putting him into your lineup.
Derrick Henry, Tennessee
I could talk about several other running backs in this spot. Ultimately, it has been a bad year for running backs. There is a general inconsistency at the position so far, so I am bringing up Derrick Henry first, since he is consistently performing at a level way below his draft value. Henry was, on average, taken as the 21st running back. Right now, he is ranked 45th at the position. Just wait until you understand what this means though…his total fantasy points ranks between Alfred Blue (HOU), and Jordan Wilkins (IND). Alfred Blue has had 16 attempts at rushing the ball so far this year. Wilkins has had 30 attempts so far, and Derrick Henry has had 46. He hasn’t gotten over 60 yards a game, and no touchdowns. What else is there to say, Derrick Henry is not viable in fantasy anymore. He is getting the workload to prove his worth, but is showing that he cannot be a workhorse running back.
David Johnson, Arizona
Johnson was one of the top three running backs off of the draft board in nearly every draft. With your first pick in the draft, you want to see somewhere around 20 points a game. That may be greedy, but a first round pick is valuable, you need to get something out of your player when he is drafted here. Unfortunately, David Johnson has only scored enough points to be the 19th running back so far this year. I am a little concerned with this output, but I haven’t lost all hope in Johnson. Week three marks the turning point for the Arizona Cardinals offense, they are making a switch at quarterback.
Hopefully, this is all that is needed to fix the issues going on in Arizona. One major issue going on in Arizona is the fact that they seem to be playing from behind in most of their games (Chicago being an exception). When that happens, your team it is essentially forced them to throw the ball. Arizona throws the ball 66.2% of their plays, which ranks 8th in the league. Unfortunately, Arizona is also dead last when it comes to average time of possession so far this year (23:47); total passing yards (396); and total rushing yards (175).
When it comes to David Johnson, the Cardinals need to use their number one weapon. They need to get him running the ball effectively early in the game, which is what I am hoping will happen when Josh Rosen takes over at quarterback. This is why I attempted to make a trade for David Johnson in many of the leagues I am in. I have high hopes for him to make a comeback soon, but these first three weeks has been a huge disappointment.
Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh
Fortunately, Antonio Brown hasn’t let us down too much, but once again, he is a first round pick. He is scoring the points I would expect out of a fourth or fifth round pick. Under standard scoring, he has put up 33 points, which isn’t terrible for your team, but this puts him as the number 24 wide receiver. This is enough for me to put him on this list. After all, it’s not like Brown hasn’t had the opportunity to get these fantasy points. Brown has the second-most targets in the league so far (42), and has the fifth-most receptions (24). It is hard to see what is going wrong with those numbers, but he is tied for 24th in yards after catch (82). He is also competing with JuJu Smith-Schuster at the position, and Smith-Schuster is lighting up the statistics board. It is starting to seem as though the workload that Brown has been benefiting from is being split between the two receivers. My advice on Brown is to wait on him, and keep plugging him into your lineup. You are going to get decent points from him, but if you are in a dynasty league and his lower numbers continue for the next couple of weeks, you should consider making a trade while his name will give you some trade value. That is the great thing about Brown, he is going to get you quite a bit in a trade even if he isn’t playing great.
San Fransisco Wide Receivers
Garoppolo’s hype boosted the draft value of the top two receivers: Pierre Garcon and Marquise Goodwin. I know I said I was going to avoid talking about injured players, but since I can include Garcon in this bit, I feel it is necessary to talk about Goodwin. I had a lot of hope for Goodwin this year. He is a very fast runner and has decent hands, while Garcon is reaching an old age. It just seemed like a good situation for a wide receiver with his potential. Goodwin had an early injury that put him on the sidelines for the first two weeks. So, I was really looking forward to see a few games with Goodwin and Garoppolo on the field. Now that Garoppolo is out for the season, that dream is shattered.
Then there is Pierre Garcon. He was in line to get all of the receiving opportunity that Goodwin was giving up with his injury. Through these first three weeks, Garcon had only 15 targets, and 7 receptions for 89 yards. This may be his old age coming through, but it has been quite a letdown for anyone investing in San Fransisco fantasy talent.
Going forward, we are going to see CJ Beathard, the second year quarterback out of Iowa. Beathard played in seven games games last year and had a pass completion percentage of 54.9%. I fear that the wide receivers in San Fransisco are going to continue their disappointing season. Even though Marquise Goodwin is back in business, I don’t see things getting better under Beathard, unless Ryan Fitzpatrick is going to send over some of that witchery that he is using down in Tampa Bay.
The thing you should gain from this article is a little bit of trade protection. At this point, team owners are making trades and trying to make rapid repairs to weak points in their team. I was recently offered a trade that I declined, offering Kareem Hunt, Tyler Lockett and Sterling Shepard, for Saquon Barkley and JuJu Smith-Schuster. I did consider this trade at first. Lockett has shown to be able to provide decent points as a wide receiver, but there is a chance that Doug Baldwin could return soon. If this happens, Lockett’s workload will more than likely be cut down. Also, Kareem Hunt earned himself a name last year. He is a quality running back, but unfortunately the change in quarterback has shown to cut into Hunt’s workload. You could add Kareem Hunt to the disappointing list for this year (so far), but as I said, the running back situation is inconsistent. It seems as though Kansas City is moving to a throw first offense. This article is to help you make some decisions on players that teams are either trying to trade or are severely disappointed in.
To sum up, if you can trade Tom Brady, I recommend doing so. Just be prepared to take a loss when finalizing a trade. You may need to drop Derrick Henry to make room on your roster for a late season breakout candidate. David Johnson is possibly worth trading for, as long as you are willing to take the risk that Josh Rosen will be the fix that Arizona needs for the rest of the year. Antonio Brown is a quality wide receiver and is worth keeping around for a few more weeks, but it may be worth working out a trade that might get you a top-ranking running back. Last but not least, don’t be afraid to move on from San Fransisco for the year. They are having an injury-plagued season.
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