With fantasy football about as predictable as the weather in New England, there is no guarantee as to what exactly will happen. Three weeks in and there have already been a handful of players who have come out of the wood-work and caught the eye of every fantasy owner. For whatever the reason though, whether it be laziness or uncertainty, a lot of these players who have been putting up big numbers still remain as free-agents or sitting on people’s benches. Three players in particular who have fallen victim to this trend are Matt Stafford, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Rob Gronkowski.
Not only has Stafford been a huge hit thus far, but so have the Lions in general. With their first 3-0 start since the NFL became a league (or at least it feels that way) the Lions are a hot trend at this point; and Matt Stafford should be too. To this point Stafford is the number three quarterback in the league (6 points behind Brees and 15 behind Brady) and the number four player overall (70 points). In three games Stafford has gained 977 yards through the air on his way to nine TD. Going up against a weakened Cowboys defense, Stafford is almost a lock to have a huge day. Yet, although owned in 100% of leagues he is only started in 65% of them, what gives? He has more points than Vick, Rodgers, Schaub and Rivers, but they start in more leagues. Oh yah, it doesn’t hurt that he is also throwing to an athletics freak by the name of Calvin Johnson. For those of you who have him, it’s time to start him.
Although he had a monster of a rookie-year with 10 TD, nobody expected Rob Gronkowski to get off to start he has. In three games Gronkowski has just under 300 yards receiving, 5 TD and 17 receptions. Those are prime-time stats, and he’s a tight-end. He is 20 points ahead of second overall tight-end Jermichael Finley, and has more points than Vick, Adrian Peterson and Andre Johnson. Oh yah did I mention HE’S A TIGHT-END. They are not supposed to put-up numbers like this, yet he is, and it amazes me that he is only started in 88% of leagues. Now I am aware that’s a high percentage but there is no reason, absolutely none that that percentage started shouldn’t be 100%. Side note, doesn’t hurt he has a guy named Tom Brady throwing him the ball.
Finally, a name nobody ever thought that would be praised in the NFL or fantasy football, Ryan Fitzpatrick. All joking aside though, this guy is no-joke. He is the number six quarterback and number nine overall fantasy-scorer (64 points). Last week during the Patriots game, Fitzpatrick silenced all doubters when he went for 369 yards and two TD passes on his way to a 34-31 victory. While that was a strong fantasy performance (netting him 18 points), ironically it was his weakest performance this season. With the emergence of Fred Jackson and Stevie Johnson, this league-leading Buffalo offense is out to prove something. With a lackluster Bengals defense opposing him next week, all signs point towards a huge game. But, he is only owned in 94% of leagues and started in only an abysmal 24%.
Now I know it can be worrisome to give certain bench-players or free-agents a shot, but in fantasy football it needs to be done at times. If any of these players are available, grab them, if you have them maybe it’s time to start them or you’ll be kicking yourself later.
Best of luck in week 4.