4for4 Mailbag Week 10
Welcome to the weekly 4for4 Mailbag, where I answer your questions about all aspects of fantasy football, including redraft leagues, DFS strategy, advice on handling angry football widows, and even some pop culture. Since it will be published on Thursdays throughout the season, I won’t be tackling waiver wire advice, so be sure to check out 4for4’s valuable articles on streaming and the like to aid with your weekly roster decisions.
To submit a question for consideration, tweet me @themondaymommy or simply use the hashtag #4for4mailbag!
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@carloscantu_007: Is Minnesota Droppable?
JE: I’m going to assume you mean the Vikings team D, and not individual position players on both sides of the ball.
Short answer, no.
When going over their numbers for the first eight games of the season, Minnesota ranks within the top 10 in four of the most important statistical categories for team DST. In passing yards allowed they have given up the fourth least with 206, and in rushing yards the eighth least at 93. The Vikings also come in as the sixth best when it comes to average passing TDs allowed with one, and fifth in defending rushing TDs with an average of .5 a game.
It’s tough to find that type of consistent production on team DST as most are unbalanced when it comes to defending both the rush and pass. As far as the rest of the season goes, Minnesota only plays two offenses in the category of strongest versus the D, in Weeks 12 & 13 against the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys. My humble opinion is to keep them, grab a streamer like New England or the Dolphins, who both have favorable matchups those two weeks and hopefully ride on to the playoffs.
@MooseOnaHill: If Fitz is already in your lineup and Nelson is ranked higher than Shepard for the flex, would you start two Cardinals? Or would you start Mark Ingram?
JE: In theory, I have no problem starting two guys from the same offense if they are playing a team that gives up a large chunk of points to that particular position. However, in this case I think Nelson sits this one out, as your other two guys are going to score more points this week.
Looking at first to the rankings of 4for4’s own John Paulson, he has Sterling Shepard as WR30, projected to gain 13.0 PPR points, and J.J. Nelson at WR36, with 11.8 points. If we then turn to our schedule adjusted fantasy points allowed metric (aFPA), it shows that the 49ers, who play the Cardinals this week, give up an average of 36.8 points to WRs weekly, while the Bengals, Shepard’s opponent, give up 33.4. Based on that data, there is an argument for both wideouts. Great help I am, right?
As much as it pains me to say, being a Bronco homer and all, the Denver defense has been a sieve when it comes to rushing yards this season, allowing an average of 129 yards on the ground per game, the fourth most in the league. John has Mark Ingram as the RB18 on the week, projected to score 12.4 PPR points.
As we all know, sometimes this whole fantasy football thing is basically throwing darts, so this week I would aim for either Shepard or Ingram, with my gut leaning a tad towards Shepard.
Discouraged Fan in Philly: Why do you think the NFL ratings are down this season?
JE: Their low ratings and loss of viewership in the first nine weeks certainly can’t be blamed on one particular thing. What I think has nothing to do with it though, are the National Anthem protests. I’ve seen and heard that topic thrown out as a factor across several media outlets. Sadly, the awareness and hype that it was meant to have was short lived and I highly doubt fans actually boycotted watching games because of it.
One thing that I think doesn’t get taken into consideration is the amount of people streaming on their laptops, watching on their phones and tablets, or other assorted media devices. I certainly am no expert or even remotely knowledgeable about how ratings work, but one can only assume that there is a large contingency of people watching games that are unaccounted for.
As far as reasons why people just flat out aren’t watching the NFL this season, I can come up with a few. First on my list, a mediocre product. There are those of us who will watch any NFL game, any time due to either the genuine love of the game, or for fantasy purposes. Then there are folks who possibly only watch their home team or if it is a marquee matchup. Not only have the prime time games this season been blah, the whole league is pretty vanilla. There are a few teams ahead of the pack like the Patriots and possibly the Cowboys, but the majority of NFL teams in both conferences are just ok.
A few other factors that could have an impact on viewership are the poor calling of games by referees this season, and the surge of emphasis of concussions and their potential CTE implications. Sure, these two have nothing to do with another, or maybe they do, but I lumped them together to wrap this up because I could probably go on for a while about both of those topics.
I am one who watches every NFL game that I can, with the exception of the Red Zone on Sundays of course, which gives me pieces of all of them. However, this season I do find myself switching away for the second half of a crap Thursday or Monday night game to catch up on a DVR’d show or two. And for me, it’s a combination of lack of on-field excitement and frustration with the refs.
As always thanks so much for all your submissions this week. See you all next Thursday for the 4for4 Mailbag!