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Week 17 Observations
I’m writing this Sunday night before the second wave of games is over because I’m busy tomorrow, and truth be told, I don’t really care about going over each game the way I normally do. The fantasy season is done, so things like usage rates and who looks good for a few snaps here and there can largely wait for next preseason.
My Primetime team no-showed this week, thanks largely to the Jaguars getting a defensive TD and then pulling their starters midway through the third quarter, something Alan Seslowsky, aka Cassandra, warned me about the possibility but neither I nor anyone else apparently took it seriously. Mostly, I used Lawrence over Danny Dimes because I thought game-flow favored Saquon Barkley and the running game, and even if Lawrence was a slight risk, he had more upside had the Texans put up a fight the way they did the prior three weeks against the Cowboys, Chiefs and Titans. But unfortunately that’s not how it went.
But even had I started Dimes, the weak performances from Rhamondre Stevenson, Barkley and Christian Kirk would have kept me out of the really big money, so we’re probably talking about a $2K mistake, not a $250K one. What’s also funny as the first half of the late games wind down is I agonized over benching DK Metcalf against the Jets for Christian Watson — once I was in a hole, I figured I might want to take a shot on the guy on the team with the higher projected total who wouldn’t be in anyone’s lineup. I stuck with Metcalf at the last second, but as of this writng both players have zeroes, despite their teams being way ahead.
I’m annoyed, but just like last year when the 12-point underdog Lions upset the Cardinals to knock us out of the $6M survivor pool with 23 teams left, once it’s over you let it go. The agony is mostly in the hope, when you’re still holding on, but when you’re dead, you’re dead.
It wasn’t all bad news today. The Giants won, clinched a playoff spot, won my +230 over eight wins alternate line bet and kept my 70:1 NFC title bet alive. The odds of them winning three playoff games are still long, but way better than 70:1. My Panthers at 12:1 to win the NFC South bet finally died. It had a good run at least, almost worth the cost in entertainment/content value.
I plan to write a “Team I Wish I Had Drafted” piece this week, and I’ll say one last thing here about Dave “The Gettlechad” Gettleman, who despite being maligned by the stat-bro cultists because he made a mocking comment about analytics, actually had a good eye for talent. He was the guy who “reached” for Dimes over Dwayne Haskins at pick 6, dodged the Sam Darnold bullet virtually all of the “sharps” would have taken and took Dexter Lawrence and Andrew Thomas, two of the best players at their respective positions this year. He also sold high on Odell Beckham and traded pick 11 (which the Bears — perhaps wisely — used on Justin Fields) for two first round picks, one of which he knew would likely accrue to his successor. The problem with Gettleman’s teams were not the players he assembled, but the coaching staffs entrusted to deploying them.
Incidentally, I’m about to hit “send” early in the second half, and Justin Jefferson still doesn’t have a catch. That means I’ll probably win my $50 third place Vegas League matchup with Peter Schoenke at least:
Who knows, in the grand scheme, maybe he’s right!