Consistency, TNF Preview and Week 6 Rankings

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Emmitt Smith, Hall of Fame running back of the Dallas Cowboys, once said, “Consistency is one of the hallmarks of my career. You knew what you were going to get out of E-Smith every game, every year, no matter if I was 22, 21, or 35 years old.” 

One of the best RBs in the history of the game knew that consistency was key. You always want someone on your side that you can depend on. No questions about their performance, just that reliability. In fantasy football, we’re looking for the same thing: Consistency. 

Boom/bust guys are infuriating as they get 20 yards one week and 200 yards the next. We want reliable players anchoring our teams, guys that get 100 yards every week, put it in the bank.

Over at ESPN Tristan Cockcroft does a weekly article in which he breaks down his “Consistency Ratings” for each fantasy football player (Go check it out here: http://es.pn/1twBDWe). These ratings take incredible research and time to put together and I think it’s one of the more useful tools on the web when it comes to fantasy studying. The gist of the column is Cockcroft breaking down which guys tend to be consistent: straying little in their weekly output. A lower consistency rating is better because it means you can easily predict a player’s output week to week. The players with lower numbers have very little deviation from their weekly averages. For example, although Drew Brees hasn’t had the elite year many expected from him, he comes in at number one in the consistency rating. Here are his 5 fantasy point totals from week to week: 15, 15, 19, 19, 16. The Saints QB has been extremely predictable this year and that’s the goal of these ratings: to figure out which guys you can trust will stick to the mean or average. On the other end of the spectrum is a guy like Matthew Stafford. His weekly totals so far? 29, 13, 3, 25, and 11. Who knows if this week in Minnesota he’ll put up a stud week like in week 1 or if he’ll have a dud like in week 3.

Furthermore, Cockcroft also sets up the percentage of weeks in which each player would have been a “start” (top 10 QB or top 25 RB/WR), a “stud” (top 2 QB or top 5 RB/WR), or a “stiff” (worse than 21st QB or worse than 51st RB/WR). As an example, look at the running back position. Only 4 guys have been a “start” in each game this year: Murray, Lynch, Bell, and Bernard. Every other running back has had at least one week outside of the top-25 positional outputs. But all in all, take these for what they’re worth. Sure T.Y. Hilton has one of the best consistency ratings, but his consistent average is around 7 points (4, 6, 8, 10, 9). I fully believe this tool can help you win a championship. But even if you don’t frequent it, at least know that this can really help when you can’t decide which running back to start this week or which QB you can write in 20 points for. On to the Thursday Night Football Preview which spotlights a few guys to keep your fantasy eye on.

 

TNF Preview

·      Andrew Luck

o   Luck has gotten off to a scorching start this season putting up more than 25 points per game while leading the league in passing yards and touchdowns. In a homecoming game, Luck will look to continue his hot stretch against a Texans D who has yet to hold a passer under 225 yards. Look for the Stanford product to shine once again in the spotlight. Prediction: 289 yards, 2 touchdowns

·      Ahmad Bradshaw

o   When Colts GM Ryan Grigson traded a first round pick to Cleveland for Trent Richardson last year, he thought he had found his bell cow running back. Instead Richardson has plodded along to an abysmal 3.1 yards per carry. Now the Colts find themselves playing the aged veteran, Bradshaw, more and more as he continues to find success. Going into this TNF matchup against a depleted and weak Texans run defense, Bradshaw will look to exploit the weakness on his way to a solid game. Side note: As an avid Texans fan, I have seen receiving backs destroy this defense so look for Bradshaw to excel in the passing game. Prediction: 10 carries, 61 yards and 5 receptions for 30 yards

·      T.Y. Hilton

o   In his 4 career meetings with the Texans, Hilton has destroyed the Texans secondary with 22 catches for 288 yards and 5 touchdowns. The speedy wideout will look to continue that success tonight, albeit with an improved secondary that looks improved from years past. The safeties will surely be tested with Hilton’s over the top speed and I’m afraid Hilton is going to get behind the D for at least one long gainer. Prediction: 4 catches for 89 yards and a TD

·      Arian Foster

o   Just as Hilton has found success against the in-division rival, Foster has feasted on the opponent’s defense over the years. In his 5 healthy games, Foster has averaged 6.6 yards per carry and found pay dirt 6 times. Coming off a stellar performance against the Cowboys, I think the running back will further improve upon those career stats vs. the Indy defense. Prediction: 23 carries for 140 yards and 2 touchdowns

·      Andre Johnson

o   The ageless wonder has yet to eclipse 100 yards on the season but I think if there’s any game he might do that in, it just might be tonight. He loves being the afterthought, the quiet lurker who’s ready to pounce. Dre is known to destroy Colts CB Vontae Davis and he’s going to continue that trend tonight. Prediction: 7 catches for 101 yards

·      GAME PREDICTION:

o   Homerism aside, I truly think the Texans may have the slightest of edges going into tonight’s game. They’re playing in front of the raucous NRG stadium crows and I think QB Ryan Fitzpatrick’s veteran wisdom finally shows itself. Bet the house on it (please don’t bet your house): Texans 20 – Colts 17.

Week 6 Rankings

·      QB

1.     Peyton Manning

2.     Philip Rivers

3.     Aaron Rodgers

4.     Matt Ryan

5.     Andrew Luck

6.     Russell Wilson

7.     Jay Cutler

8.     Carson Palmer

9.     Eli Manning

10. Matthew Stafford

11. Ben Roethlisberger

12. Jake Locker

13. Andy Dalton

14. Colin Kaepernick

15. Nick Foles

16. Kirk Cousins

17. Tony Romo

18. Tom Brady

19. Joe Flacco

20. Brian Hoyer

 

·      RB

1.     Arian Foster

2.     Matt Forte

3.     Le’veon Bell

4.     Marshawn Lynch

5.     Eddie Lacy

6.     Giovani Bernard

7.     Demarco Murray

8.     LeSean McCoy

9.     Andre Ellington

10. Branden Oliver

11. Alfred Morris

12. Frank Gore

13. Andre Williams

14. Ben Tate

15. Lamar Miller

16. Doug Martin

17. Ahmad Brashaw

18. Zac Stacy

19. Justin Forsett

20. Joique Bell

21. Stevan Ridley

22. Steven Jackson

23. Chris Ivory

24. C.J. Spiller

25. Fred Jackson

 

·      WR

1.     Demaryius Thomas

2.     Jordy Nelson

3.     Julio Jones

4.     Antonio Brown

5.     Dez Bryant

6.     Brandon Marshall

7.     Emmanuel Sanders

8.     Jeremy Maclin

9. Vincent Jackson

10. Percy Harvin

11. Alshon Jeffery

12. Randall Cobb

13. Golden Tate

14. Steve Smith

15. Andre Johnson

16. Michael Floyd

17. DeSean Jackson

18. Victor Cruz

19. Pierre Garcon

20. T.Y. Hilton

21. Mike Wallace

22. Mohamed Sanu

23. Rueben Randle

24. DeAndre Hopkins

25. Brian Quick

 

·      TE

1.     Rob Gronkowski

2.     Julius Thomas

3.     Greg Olsen

4.     Delanie Walker

5.     Martellus Bennett

6.     Larry Donnell

7.     Antonio Gates

8.     Dwayne Allen

9. Eric Ebron

10. Owen Daniels

11. Jordan Cameron

12. Zach Ertz

13. Jason Witten

14. Heath Miller

15. Niles Paul

 

·      D/ST

1.     Chargers

2.     49ers

3.     Titans

4.     Seahawks

5.     Bengals

6.     Packers

7.     Broncos

8.     Lions

9.     Giants

10. Texans

11. Ravens

12. Patriots

13. Vikings

14. Cardinals

15. Eagles

 

·      Flex

 

1.     Arian Foster

2.     Matt Forte

3.     Le’Veon Bell

4.     Marshawn Lynch

5.     Eddie Lacy

6.     Giovani Bernard

7.     Demaryius Thomas

8.     Jordy Nelson

9.     Julio Jones

10. Demarco Murray

11. LeSean McCoy

12. Andre Ellington

13. Branden Oliver

14. Alfred Morris

15. Antonio Brown

16. Dez Bryant

17. Brandon Marshall

18. Frank Gore

19. Emmanuel Sanders

20. Jeremy Maclin

21. Vincent Jackson

22. Andre Williams

23. Ben Tate

24. Lamar Miller

25. Percy Harvin

26. Doug Martin

27. Ahmad Bradshaw

28. Alshon Jeffery

29. Randall Cobb

30. Golden Tate

31. Zac Stacy

32. Justin Forsett

33. Joique Bell

34. Steve Smith

35. Andre Johnson

36. Michael Floyd

37. DeSean Jackson

38. Stevan Ridley

39. Steven Jackson

40. Chris Ivory

41. Victor Cruz

42. Pierre Garcon

43. T.Y. Hilton

44. C.J. Spiller

45. Mike Wallace

46. Mohamed Sanu

47. Rueben Randle

48. Fred Jackson

49. DeAndre Hopkins

50. Brian Quick

 

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This has been another edition of Fantasy Decisions with Bradley Maddox. Always remember: An elite owner stays ahead of the curve.