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Fantasy Football: Time to go all in on Josh Gordon

Pete Davidson
September 18, 2018 - 11:28 am
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Welcome to Week 3, folks.

Things are starting to take shape and all of our teams fit into three scenarios. You have the undefeated teams, the winless and the 1-1 crew. In today’s column, my primary concern is for the winless. The reasons for this are many, but mostly I want to make sure that we don’t make any decisions while we’re on tilt. Tilting is a real thing. Often times, when our teams go south, our decision-making ability goes south with them. Just ask a poker player who’s been getting cold cards. It’s tough to hold on to one’s confidence in lean times. Being aware of this is step one in avoiding some major blunders.

So please consider this to be not so much a pep talk, but a reality check. Maybe David Johnson is ruining your good time. Maybe Leonard Fournette is the source of your angst or perhaps it’s Le’Veon Bell. No matter the cause, we need to keep our heads clean and make good well-reasoned decisions. Rather than helping others by “shaking up” your team, it’s probably best to just keep grinding. Listen to trade offers, sure, but resist the urge to take wild swings out of desperation. More often, patience in combination with some grit and determination is the better course. 

If you are a Johnson owner, find some solace in what the head coach said yesterday. Johnson is supposedly getting more involved in the passing game going forward and will also be used in the slot at times, which is very good news, assuming it holds true. In Fournette’s case, the hamstring should be healed soon enough. In the meantime, go get Corey Grant or T.J. Yeldon and hope for the best. Fournette is a talented bruiser of a back and we all saw how good his team is on Sunday. So, the same guy who put you in this hole can get you out. For the Bell teams, just pray that Le’Veon wakes up and realizes that he’s leaving way too much money on the table, and reports. Don’t go selling him for fifty cents on the dollar when your team is built around him. Finally, if you are going to move a guy like Bell, you market him to every team in your league and get some bidding going. Make sure you make the market work for you. Leave a message board post so every team knows he’s on the block. And, if you are not being offered a true impact player in return, then sit tight.

I want to address Josh Gordon here at the top. In most leagues, he’s already rostered. But just in case, you’ll want to check your wire, because some people cut him on Saturday when the news broke that he was being released.

 

If you are in one of these leagues, I’d sell out and empty the bank for Gordon, especially if you are one of the 0-2 teams we’ve talked about. This would be a chance for a free shot in the arm, so go for it.

As always, if you play in deeper formats, head over to Rotobahn.com this afternoon for the expanded waiver wire and the Rotobahn waiver wire podcast. It’s all free. I’ll add a "skinny" for each player listed here and I’ll be adding more players to target as I continue to work through the Week 2 game film. If you have specific questions about your moves this week, feel free to hit me up on Twitter @Rotobahn.  I’ll be online tonight and will do my best to get to as many of your questions as I can.

Important Week 3 Injury situations:

Joe Mixon (knee)

LeSean McCoy (ribs)

Mike Wallace (ankle/leg)

Dalvin Cook (hamstring)

Doug Baldwin (knee)

Leonard Fournette (hamstring)

Marcus Mariota (elbow)

Aaron Rodgers (knee) 

Devonta Freeman (knee)

Marquise Goodwin (quad)

Mixon had a minor procedure to “clean up some loose particles” in his knee. He will be out for a few weeks. McCoy has a rib injury that could cause him to miss some time. It sounds like a pain tolerance issue. Wallace’s injury is significant and should keep him out for about two months and perhaps the season. Cook’s hamstring sounds like it could be minor, but it underscores the importance of rostering Latavius Murray as a handcuff in any league that gives you adequate roster space. Minnesota will be near the goal line a lot this year. Having the lead RB is a definite plus. Baldwin is out another week or so. Fournette could start practicing this week and could make his return in Week 3. Mariota was active last week as the emergency quarterback so his return should be imminent. Rodgers looked very good though obviously limited in terms of mobility. He should continue to play through the injury and could shed that bulky brace in a week or two. Freeman will miss at least one more week, but perhaps more as this is an aggravation of the same injury that limited him down the stretch in 2017. Goodwin is a decent bet to return this week, but keep an eye on the 49ers’ practice reports. If he comes back, he will be rewarded with a sweet matchup in Kansas City. 

Last Chance Options:

Kenny Golladay, Lions

Josh Gordon, Patriots

Matt Breida, 49ers

Aaron Jones, Packers

Quincy Enunwa, Jets

DeSean Jackson, Bucs

Phillip Lindsay, Broncos

The window is almost shut on these guys, but they are all available in enough leagues where you need to at least check their status. It’s doubtful that any of these folks are available later on down the road. Golladay is looking like a potential WR1 if things keep going on the current track. Gordon has a huge ceiling, but obviously, he’s also got an abyss for a floor. Breida may have taken the lead role in a Kyle Shanahan backfield. In the words of Kent Dorfman, "Hell-o!" Jones will return from suspension this week, and he could end up in the lead role by the time we get to Week 4. If that happens, he’s a potential league-winning waiver pick up. He’s a nice trade target too. Enunwa is locked into a very substantial role with the Jets and is still a highly underrated talent. Only injury will get him out of your lineup. He’s that good. Lindsay is this year’s rookie from out of nowhere. There’s no way to tell how long they will toy with him as a co-lead back, but he’s got to be owned in all leagues right now. His talent is a real thing.

Top Five Options:

Keelan Cole, Jaguars

John Brown, Ravens

Chris Godwin, Bucs

Gio Bernard, Bengals

Marlon Mack, Colts

Unlike the last chance options, these guys are available in a lot of leagues, so they should be your focal point. Cole obviously looked great against the Patriots last week—making the eye-popping catch of the year to date. That being said, he’s more than just a highlight. Cole is a legit baller, and he has the look of the Jaguars number one receiver. I’d sell out to get this guy in all leagues if you still have a chance. The injury to Marqise Lee has opened the door, and Cole is the receiver who has walked through it. John Brown is always a health concern, but as of now he’s the Ravens’ lead receiver, and he’s producing. Godwin has some role concerns but he’s a young emerging talent and his team knows it. I don’t think he’s going to lose snaps. In fact, I think he’ll probably gain some. He played 50 percent of the team’s snaps in Week 2. Bernard may be the guy to go after this week if you are a Le’Veon Bell owner. Gio could buy you 2-3 weeks time and that’s huge given the Bell situation. Mack got his feet wet in Week 2 after missing significant time to a hamstring injury. He looked pretty good and his role should grow going forward. With Andrew Luck slowly rounding into shape, Mack could end up in a pretty good spot in a few weeks. Go get him now if you can. He can be a flex play for you right now.

The Stash Options:

James Washington, Steelers 

Anthony Miller, Bears

D.J. Moore, Panthers

Mike Williams, Chargers

Calvin Ridley, Falcons

Nick Chubb, Browns

Ronald Jones, Bucs

Hayden Hurst, Ravens

Dante Pettis, 49ers

Courtland Sutton, Broncos

Dez Bryant, free agent

John Ross, Bengals

Ian Thomas, Panthers

Jonnu Smith, Titans

D'Onta Foreman, Texans 

Baker Mayfield, Browns

Josh Rosen, Cardinals

Dallas Goedert, Eagles

I’m a big believer in stashing the really talented players before they go off. I don’t like having to bid and pray when it comes to landing difference-makers. I‘d rather try to act in advance and save my money for emergency situations. The 18 options above are almost all young players who have a chance at major playing time in the coming weeks. The other trait they share is top shelf talent. I’ll get into each one of these players in my free waiver wire podcast over at Rotobahn. I recommend listening if you play in a format with 12 or more teams.

QUARTERBACKS

Andy Dalton, Bengals

Blake Bortles, Jaguars

Joe Flacco, Ravens

Tyrod Taylor, Browns

Sam Darnold, Jets 

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bucs

Baker Mayfield, Browns

Case Keenum, Broncos

Josh Rosen, Cardinals

RUNNING BACKS

Gio Bernard, Bengals

Marlon Mack, Colts

Nick Chubb, Browns 

Latavius Murray, Vikings

Corey Clement, Eagles

Nyheim Hines, Colts 

Ronald Jones, Bucs

Austin Ekeler, Chargers

Corey Grant, Jaguars

Ito Smith, Falcons

Theo Riddick, Lions

Jordan Wilkins, Colts

Javorius Allen, Ravens

Chris Ivory, Bills

Marcus Murphy, Bills

WIDE RECEIVERS

Keelan Cole, Jaguars 

John Brown, Ravens

Chris Godwin, Bucs

D.J. Moore, Panthers

Anthony Miller, Bears

James Washington, Steelers 

Calvin Ridley, Falcons

Geronimo Allison, Packers

Tyler Lockett, Seahawks

Mike Williams, Chargers 

Brandon Marshall, Seahawks

Kelvin Benjamin, Bills

Antonio Callaway, Browns

John Ross, Bengals 

Dede Westbrook, Jaguars

Ryan Grant, Colts

Ted Ginn, Saints

Tyler Boyd, Bengals 

Phillip Dorsett, Patriots

Dez Bryant, Free Agent

Dante Pettis, 49ers

Courtland Sutton, Broncos

Rashad Higgins, Browns

TIGHT ENDS

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Jaguars

Jesse James, Steelers

Eric Ebron, Colts

Hayden Hurst, Ravens

Ian Thomas, Panthers

Jonnu Smith, Titans

Will Dissly, Seahawks

Austin Hooper, Falcons

Ricky Seals-Jones, Cardinals

Vance McDonald, Steelers

Jake Butt, Broncos

Dallas Goedert, Eagles

Ben Watson, Saints

Antonio Gates, Chargers

Chris Herndon, Jets

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