Inaugural High Stakes League Championship Recap

Updated: January 10th 2022

We have a champion and the name of the team is “The Don” Piccolo!  Congrats to Ryan Bennett, owner of “The Don.”  It wasn’t the prettiest season.  But, they often aren’t.  This team overcame adversity throughout and worked the waiver wire to keep his team in the game every week.  It wasn’t without a bit of luck along the way as his matchups constantly worked in his favor.  This team didn’t usually put up huge points, but they often put up enough points.  Including the final three weeks of the fantasy season where it matters most.  The playoffs and then the championship.

But, to just announce a champion would not do justice to the drama that unfolded throughout this matchup.  This is why I exist.  So, you get a story, my fellow owners.  I’m going to start at my favorite part.

“The Don” thought all was lost by 1:53p EST and came on the group chat to announce “gg.”  To be fair, his opponent XFL Stars, who had been rather dominant this season and entered as our number one seed, was off to a really hot start.  Like, really hot.  Hotter than Matt Nagy’s seat in Chicago.  XFL Stars had amassed a 70+ point lead in the first 45 minutes of play and was now favored in the projections by 20 points or so. Do you know how I know this wasn’t their first championship game?  Well, I actually asked them this question and reported they own fifteen championships already in all their years of fantasy football in my write-up last week so, that question wasn’t fair.  But, let’s assume I didn’t already know the answer and that you didn’t either because I know you read my write-up last week, right?  It’s because these guys responded to “The Don’s” gg announcement with: “We ain’t celebrating shit with Kyler and Herbert still to go haha”  Wise words, XFL Stars.  Prophetic, even if Kyler and Herbert may not have been the ultimate reason for the eventual win.  Kyler and Herbert did the same as most of “The Don’s” team did, they met their averages and/or underperformed a little.  No, two other late-season gems took this team to the promised land.

The guy who is the pride of Detroit lately, Amon-Ra St. Brown, came to play.  Keep your eyes on this kid.  He entered this contest on a four-game streak of 15-26 points while averaging over 22 pts during that span.  Already an easy choice to start but who knew the kid would drop 35 points in such a crucial week.  35 points from a Lions receiver was pretty unexpected.  While Amon-Ra was doing his thing, Rashaad Penny had nearly an equally impressive day.  This kid has been searching for the spotlight for years and battled injuries instead.  This week his name lit up the fantasy football chat boards.  Good for him.  And like Amon-Ra, he was already heating up, averaging  17 points over the previous three weeks and topped out at 26 points.  Then, he reached the pinnacle at the right time putting up 32 points.  “The Don” had both of these crucial pieces in place, but, they needed one more thing to go their way as the match was not over.

It was 5:25p EST, about an hour into Penny and St. Brown’s games, that XFL Stars came back to the chat to see if “The Don” was still watching football.  “The Don” simply replied he was and, XFL Stars co-owner, Nic, indicated that he was turning his TV off.  The tides had turned.  But, by the end of afternoon games, XFL Stars still owned a lead of about 3.46 points with “The Don” having Nick Chubb left to play.  It would seem like an easy amount of points for Chubb to obtain as he averaged about seventeen per game to this point in the season.  Nonetheless, we still have to play the game.  To Monday Night Football we go!  The score is XFL Stars 150.06 to “The Don’s” 146.60 points.

It’s this kind of suspense you want to see in a championship battle and these guys delivered.  Congrats again on the great battle here, guys.  As easy as those 3.46 points for Chubb seemed, the game would dictate a different outcome.  It’s not that he never got there.  I think the fantasy gods wanted to see “The Don” sweat and give XFL false hope.  We know how fickle the gods can be for seemingly no reason sometimes.  It was a strange game where Chubb was seen on the sidelines a bit more often than suspected and I saw rumors start swirling of a possible unknown injury.  Could it happen?  Could Chubb fall short of such an easy point total?  XFL Stars showed back up to the chat at halftime of the MNF game with a glimmer of hope.  “Survived the first half,” they said, followed by, “Never mind, no we didn’t by 0.4 haha.”  Yes, it seems the fantasy gods messed with those numbers long enough for XFL to get a little egg on their face.  This game was played with much less Chubb than most people would prefer.  Even the announcers began to question why the man wasn’t getting playing time.  By game’s end, Nick Chubb only had 5.8 points.  5.8 was enough Chubb today though.  The final score was 152.40 to 150.06.  “The Don” had done it and it was a great championship match that was decided in the final hour of football by roughly two points.  As The Storyteller, I couldn’t ask for much more.

For now, Stephen at RSO tells me that we are going to see a “CHAMPIONS” tab appear on the RSO home page in the near future where we will get to see all of the past champions of all sanctioned RSO leagues.  This must be an exciting prospect for both winners to date.  Season one champion, Philadelphia Freeways, who are owned by the tandem David Zurenko and Jared Smith along with our season two champ, “The Don” Piccolo, owned by Ryan Bennett, will now get to see their name in lights, as they say.

So, when are you getting into this league?  I sure hope to see your name around next season.  Make sure to contact someone at RSO to get on the list as soon as possible.  If you are a procrastinator like me, you probably want to join you just haven’t gotten around to it.  After all, we aren’t at the deadline to get on the list.  Do yourself a favor and send a quick email right now while you are thinking about it.  You’ll be happy you got in early this time.  Tell them The Storyteller sent you to make sure you are eligible for associated discounts.  You’ll know you’re in the right place because these guys are already talking about trades for next season.

I am personally signing off until at least February and then I plan to pop up occasionally as we navigate the offseason.  My sincere thanks to all of you who’ve joined us on our journey this season.  I hope you’ll follow along when we return for ’22.  This is The Storyteller, signing off on the ’21 season.  See you after the rollover.

~ RSO High Stakes League Storyteller 

More Analysis by Matt Russell

Inaugural High Stakes League season two championship preview

Updated: January 2nd 2022

We’ve made it.  Well, two owners made it and the rest of us get to hear about it.  It’s the championship game in the Inaugural High Stakes League.  Today, we’re going to get to know our two finalists a little bit better.

 

Before I go further though, let me first tell you that I’d love to be sitting here writing about you.  Yes, you.  You, the guy who plays in just one league.  Or, you, the guy who plays in ten leagues.  The one with only a few years experience and you, the one who has been playing since the 80’s when we would mail in our lineups.  We’re growing this thing and we want you growing with us.  If you haven’t yet, message someone at RSO and tell them you want on the list.  Now is the time.  By getting on the list, you make sure you have a chance to join the new league, or, are able to purchase a team that comes available in an existing league.  It’s not a commitment, but ensures you’ll have the option to join the day it opens to your number on the waiting list.  RSO has big things planned for these leagues and, if you love fantasy football like I do, you don’t want to miss it.

 

Let’s recap last week briefly to know how we got here.  Our number one seed and top scoring team of the season, XFL Stars, faced off against Wendell Takeover Project.  If you’ve been following along, you know that XFL has been as strong as it gets down the stretch.  This past week against Wendell gave them their eighth straight win while never scoring below 142 points during that whole stretch.  It’s an amazing run and it’s still going strong.  Wendell bought in new in ’21 and you always like to see a noob go far in their first year.  A lot of people fear taking over a dynasty team and think it’s automatically going to be a rebuild but I’ve seen success over and over when you get the right owner in place.  First season or not.  Unfortunately, a championship wasn’t in the cards this year and making the semi-finals in your first year owning an existing team, will have to suffice to brag about.  Maybe we’ll see mention of it in one of Stephen’s future emails.  Yes, this is the same Wendell who signs off on those RSO emails you read.  You…do read those, right?

Our other match was between the #2 and #3 seeds.  Y Town and “The Don” Piccolo, respectively.  Going into this match, this league had seen two years of calm and agreeable behavior among all the owners, for the most part.  By 4pm EST most of the first set of Sunday games were about over and the winner was looking likely decided between these two.  That winner was not looking like Y Town, despite his number two seed and a season long flirtation with the top spot.  It was around this time that an epic rant ensued.  When I tell you it was an epic rant, that’s probably being nice.  I actually dusted that turd with powdered sugar and fed it to you as a brownie.  I’ll be frank here, I’ve seen a few rants over the years.  Mostly from myself.  But I’ve never seen one quite like this.  Then again, I’ve never played with so much money on the line.  I don’t want to shed too much light on this moment though because I think we’ve all felt the frustration of an amazing season slip through our fingers.  If you haven’t, then keep playing.  Your time will come.  But, I’ll never forget some of the conversations that day and for you, the reader, we have the beginnings of a rivalry that is likely to last a long time.  Don’t forget about these two names.  I feel good there may be more stories to tell in the future.  This time though, “The Don” is the victor, and it wasn’t close.  Nearly a 90-point blowout put “The Don” in the finals and gave him high score of the week.  This team is ramping up at the right time.  Let’s get focused on our finalists now.

 

Let’s meet the owners who will be battling for it all.  As The Storyteller, I pitched both parties a set of questions to help us get to know these guys.  Let’s start with our number one seed, XFL Stars…

 

XFL Stars owners:  Brayden Paget (Primary decision-maker and the owner answering these questions) and Nic Ziegler (Investor and advisor)

First year playing fantasy football?  First year playing was in 2012.  A guy I went to college with introduced me to DFS sports betting and then it really took off from there!

First year playing a dynasty format?  See Next Question

How long have you been playing on RSO specifically?  I believe my first RSO league and dynasty league would have been in 2013.  Hands down the best fantasy football platform on the market.  I’ve slowly moved all of my leagues over to RSO as it is the best fantasy experience out there.

How many leagues do you currently play?  (No answer – but later answered through conversation that he averages being in about 10 leagues per year since he started)

How many championships have you won over the years?  I’d say I’ve won around 15 championships since I started playing fantasy football.

Do you always own teams in tandem or is that just for this league?  This is the first team I’ve ever owned in tandem.  My good friend and co-owner is a fantasy football nut like me so when we saw this High Stakes League opportunity we couldn’t pass it up!  It’s been a blast so far and we look forward to many more years.

Was there anything about this season you feel was responsible for getting you here?  Certain moves, trades, etc?  I think filling our bench with good back up RB’s was important.  Fournette ended up being a weekly starter for only a million bucks so that was huge.  Have 2 guys starting for us every week on cheap contracts like those gave us a ton of flexibility.  We made a big trade for Waller and he has played one game for us.  Thankfully that trade didn’t hurt us so far!

How confident are you in winning it all this year?  If Covid wasn’t a thing then I would say we would be very confident in winning it all this season.  But, as we all know, I’m sure Covid will have something to say about our starting lineups before Sunday.  Just happy to make it to the money round!

Do you feel your team is set up for long term success?  (Not answered here but is addressed in next question)

If someone wanted to buy your team to get into this league, would you sell it for the right price?  I guess I’ve never really thought about what we would sell our team for.  It would take a lot, haha.  We love our team and think we are set up very well for the next 2-3 years.  If someone wants to offer up 10k maybe we would listen 🙂

Lastly, what is your toughest lineup decision for this Championship game?  As of today (These questions answered on Friday), our toughest lineup decision will most likely be starting one of Pollard, Juedy, or Darrell Williams (If CEH is out).

Anything else relevant for us readers to know?  I’ll just add that being in the finals of this league with friggin Ricky Seals-Jones as our starting TE is a miracle in itself, haha.

 

Now, over to our number three seed and other finalist, “The Don” Piccolo….

“The Don” Piccolo owner: Ryan Bennett

First year playing fantasy football?  1998

First year playing a dynasty format? Dynasty format I started just about ten years or so….I’m old lol, hard to remember.

How long have you been playing on RSO specifically?  Been playing RSO 7 years now with 4 total leagues at the moment with RSO

How many leagues do you currently play?  Prior to last season I was only in a handful of leagues. Last season I was in 55.  This season I backed down to 40.  Want to concentrate on some of the bigger buy-ins that I’m in.

How many championships have you won over the years?  Championships, man, hard to count over a 20-year span…let’s say enough to keep doing this and confident enough to do in abundance at this point in my life.

Do you always own teams in tandem or is that just for this league?  (N/A)

Was there anything about this season you feel was responsible for getting you here?  Certain moves, trades, etc?  Without a doubt Herbert and Mac Jones are signed through 2024 and 25. Kyler, Chubb, and Hopkins all return next year.  I have Higgins, Waddle, Amon Ra all locked in for 3-4 years.  Gesicki and Higbee for the next couple and I still have draft picks in the second and third round.  I moved my first round draft pick for this year.  Next year confident they will be late but did recover picks in return.

How confident are you in winning it all this year?  (No reply)

Do you feel your team is set up for long term success?  (Answered above)

If someone wanted to buy your team to get into this league, would you sell it for the right price?  I want to sell the team honestly.  I would be hard pressed to sell the team for next season with all my starters returning and I’m in the championship right now and I was in the semi’s last year.  But yeah, I fully would do that after the season but I really enjoy this league too so that’s a tough one.

Lastly, what is your toughest lineup decision for this Championship game?  Higbee or Gesicki easily.  I’m leaning Gesicki to hedge Waddle.

Anything else relevant for us readers to know?  (Nothing added)

 

As of this writing, RSO projections are giving a very close win to “The Don.”  143.48 to 139.92.  Expect a close match with these two.  Who do you got?

 

Now, the time has come to sort it all out.  If you’ve come this far, I know you’ll be joining me next week to hear the results.  I can’t wait.  Don’t forget to message someone about getting on the list.  Do it today.  Thank me tomorrow.  And maybe we’ll see YOU, in the finals next year.

 

RSO High Stakes League Storyteller

More Analysis by Matt Russell

Inaugural High Stakes League update 12

Updated: December 26th 2021

What a rough week for fantasy football.  Heading into the second week of the playoffs things are only getting worse.  The Covid IR is in full effect right now, not to mention actual injuries on top of it, and depth is the name of the game in ’21.

As we look at last week’s games, and what brought to our match ups this week, those seeds really played a big role in which teams advanced.  The good news (if you are a spectator) is that both matches were extremely close.  The match between the #4 seed and the #5 seed was decided by only four points at 141-137.  #4 seed Wendell Takeover Project advances over Just Dodge, and now we have to wonder if the midseason name change affected Just Dodge in the end.

In the battle between the #3 seed and the #6 seed, the match was decided by only seven points.  “The Don” Piccolo continues to face the right team each week to get a win despite putting up subpar point totals.  107-100 was the final and, clearly, if “the Don” faced either of the two other teams, his season would be over.  I’ll have to check with “the Don” to see what he uses each week as a sacrificial lamb to the Fantasy Gods.  Because, it’s working.

So, we advance another week and here we are with the top four seeds all facing each other.  The big dogs, XFL Stars, will match up against Wendell and Y Town squares off against “The Don.”  It’s time to place those bets.  Who will make it to the finals?  Whichever teams do, you know they will be handicapped by Covid IR and a mountain of injuries that have piled up this season.  Finding and implementing players you can stream for one week is an integral part of fantasy football success and these teams are getting their ability to assess these players, and their situations, tested well.

It’s a quick update this week for me as I spend time with family for the holidays.  I hope all of you were able to do the same, or enjoy the holiday season in the best way possible.  Good luck to all the teams still contending for a title.

See you next week.

RSO High Stakes League Storyteller

More Analysis by Matt Russell

Inaugural High Stakes League update 11

Updated: December 16th 2021

The story this week was going to be centered around teams that absolutely dominate the regular season but then fall short of winning it all.  I had stories in my head about Ladainian Tomlinson’s legendary ’06 season in which I owned the fantasy football regular season with him on my roster but was beat in the playoffs by a hot team and didn’t even make it to the Super Bowl.  I was thinking of the actual New England Patriots and how their chance at an undefeated season was ruined by a hot wild card team in an epic battle from which I’ll never forget that David Tyree catch.  Really, you can hearken back all the way to the Miami Dolphins ’72 season before you find a fully undefeated team at season’s end and you also have an example of those ’95-’96 Chicago Bulls who dominated the regular season, setting an NBA record for wins, and also went on to win a Championship.  So, it does happen.  But, it’s tough.  Really tough.

After Monday night’s game, my story had to change.  It looked as if XFL Stars was heading towards another high score of the week.  It would’ve been an unprecedented 5th in a row.  Absolute domination by our first place team.  But, James Conner, Cooper Kupp, and the Wendell Takeover Project had a different idea.  Those two studs put up 65 points and leapfrogged Wendell over XFL Stars for high score of the week with 176 and XFL had the first new chink in their armor in many weeks.  Don’t get me wrong.  XFL still put up 169 points.  They still look dominant.  They are probably the most feared team in the playoffs, but, we may have some contenders that will challenge them.  No one likes a forgone conclusion anyways.  Frankly, the top four teams have all remained pretty consistent this year.  Each of them stands a chance at taking the ‘ship.  Some more than others but I think they all have a chance.  The other two teams in the playoffs, however….

So, here’s the good news.  If you are Just Dodge, No Rodge or the Borderland Bombers, you’re happy you made the playoffs.  After all, Big Tings was the one team out of the three that were battling for those last two spots and didn’t make it.  At least you aren’t them.  Them and their measly 75 points.  75 points in the crucial final week is going to haunt those guys for a while.  Yeah, at least you aren’t them.  Then again, it’s hard to feel confident in either of these two final playoff qualifiers.  Borderland Bombers limps into the playoffs with a 92 point showing while losing to the 11th place team, These Truths to be Self Richard Dent, and it’s been many weeks since they topped 150 points.  Those top four teams do it on the reg.  You know who else doesn’t usually score 150 points?  Just Dodge.  Not since week 5 has this team put up over 150 points.  No, if I’m either of those two teams, I can’t feel real confident in my chances.  But, they do have chances, unlike the other half of the league.  And, as I write this, the number of players being put on covid IR is getting out of control.  A wrinkle like this could give any team a chance and level the playing field.

Let’s take a look at the final regular season standings with the top six places by playoff seed:

(seed) Team. Record, total points

(1)  XFL Stars. 11-3, 2269

(2)  Y Town.  10-4, 2061

(3)  “The Don” Piccolo.  10-4, 1881

(4)  Wendell Takeover Project.  9-5, 1952

(5)  Just Dodge, No Rodge.  5-9, 1825

(6)  Borderland Bombers.  8-6, 1791

(7)  Philadelphia Freeways. 8-6, 1641

(8)  DC Guardians.  7-7, 1733

(9)  Big Tings.  6-8, 1768

(10)  Schless is More.  4-10, 1603

(11) These Truths to be Self Richard Dent.  4-10, 1550

(12) NJ Generals.  2-12, 1509

Top four seeds based on record.  Final two based on total points.

If you compare to last week, there was some final jostling of playoff seeds.  “The Don” suffers a loss to the DC Guardians who ultimately do not land terribly far from the edge of the bubble.  Once the number seed, “The Don” dropped two of their last three and enter the playoffs the third seed while trying to get right.  Y Town reclaims the second seed and a 1st round bye along with XFL Stars who continue their impressive campaign.  Also, Just Dodge swaps spots with Borderland to move into the 5th spot.

So, who’s it going to be?  Can anyone take down XFL?  It starts with this week where Borderland faces “The Don” and Wendell battles Just Dodge.  Wendell is fresh off a 176 point showing and has to be the favorite in their game.  RSO projections currently show Dodge as a 10 point dog.  But, we all know things change rapidly these days with the effects of covid.    “The Don” is currently favored by 17 points over Borderland despite just making a public gripe in the owners’ communication feed about losing DeAndre Hopkins for the rest of the season.  The other owners didn’t seem to care much.  You won’t find many hearts bigger than a Grinch’s in your fantasy football leagues.

Come back next week to find out which teams will face our top two seeds, XFL Stars and Y Town and congrats to all who made the playoffs.  I know I wasn’t one of them.

– RSO High Stakes League Storyteller

More Analysis by Matt Russell

Inaugural High Stakes League update 10

Updated: December 9th 2021

As we come barreling into the final week of the regular season we are essentially down to seven teams fighting for six spots.  While there could be some last minute shuffling of seed order among the six playoff qualifiers, it’s those final two spots, which are based on total points, that will provide the exciting finish to the regular season.

 

First, let’s discuss how we got here with a review of last week.  League powerhouse, XFL Stars, has lead the league in total points most of this season but it wasn’t until last week they finally took over 1st place.  Next up for XFL was Schless is More – fresh off an upset win of previous 1st place team, “The Don” Piccolo.  But, when you’re hot, you’re hot.  XFL Stars squashed Schless like a meaningless bug in their path on their way to another league high score of the week.  They drop 186 points to Schless’s 116.  Schless looks like they’ve locked up the #3 pick in the draft next year.

Speaking of teams near the bottom of the standings, we witnessed a battle for next season’s number one pick.  The two teams tied for last squared off to see who was the suckiest of all the suck in the land.  It’s NJ Generals.  They’re the suckiest.  But, they likely get that number one pick next year now which they are probably more happy about than any sucky moniker they earned.

In our biggest upset of last week, Borderland Bombers continued their charge towards the playoffs.  They’ve sat quietly in the seven spot for many weeks now just continually trying to break through.  Like a crypto stock going to the moon out of nowhere, this team finally broke through in an important week against the second highest scoring team in the league, Y Town.  The point total wasn’t tremendous, but in a week where a few other key teams’ scoring was down, 135 points was enough to win the game and catapult this team from the #7 seed up to the #5 seed with a chance at the #4 before it’s all said and done.  That’s a big week.  But, it’s close.  Oh so close, with seven total points separating three teams for the final two playoff spots. This team still needs to finish strong or it could miss that final spot.

Y Town still has over 1900 points this season and sits in the #3 spot now.  But, this makes two losses in three weeks as we get real close to the post season.  That’s not how any team wants to be trending during such a crucial time.

If you’ve been following along on our superstition watch, a midseason team name change seems to have sent Just Dodge, No Rodge on a skid with a few losses while they barely hang on to enough points to get into the playoffs.  If they miss the playoffs I will feel vindicated and declare this superstition to be essentially a scientific fact.  Last week was a tough one scoring sub-100.  They do that again this week and it’s over.  There’s no more room for error here in the final week with three teams so close in total points.

Our trade deadline heroes (See update 6), Philadelphia Freeways, played in a must win game against Wendell Takeover Project.  With a win they could stay within range of the top four spots and get in on record.  Potentially.  That didn’t transpire.  In fact, we saw a good old fashioned ass-whipping.  Wendell pretty much locked up his playoff birth with a solid 151 point showing.  Philadelphia, however, may have put up the lowest points in our short league history.  This team made some great moves at the deadline.  But, some of these moves left them high and dry during some crucial bye weeks and they found themselves in a Superflex league with only Mike Glennon available to start at QB.  Yikes.  Then you realize this team is without it’s shiny new toy, Davante Adams, and you understand why they could only muster 60 points.  ODB was the highest scoring player on this team with 2 receptions, 28 yards, and a TD.  I’ve seen uglier efforts over my many years playing fantasy football, but it’s been a long time.

How about those standings….

(seed) Team. Record, total points

(1)  XFL Stars. 10-3, 2099

(2)  “The Don” Piccolo.  10-3, 1749

(3)  Y Town.  9-4, 1901

(4)  Wendell Takeover Project.  8-5, 1775

(5)  Borderland Bombers.  8-5, 1699

(6)  Just Dodge, No Rodge.  5-8, 1695

(7)  Big Tings.  6-7, 1692

(8)  DC Guardians.  6-7, 1588

(9)  Schless is More.  4-9, 1523

(10) Philadelphia Freeways. 7-6, 1517

(11) These Truths to be Self Richard Dent.  3-10, 1425

(12) NJ Generals.  2-11, 1416

Top four seeds based on record.  Final two based on total points.

As I look through the slate of upcoming games I admit it’s uninspiring.  It’s almost like every top team is playing a bottom team.  I see a lot of disparity in the match ups.  So, upsets are unlikely for those top three teams who all play seeds eight or lower.  #4 Wendell has a match up against Just Dodge.  But, Dodge is a team testing superstitions so my faith in them is waning.  They get a tough final draw against which to prove themselves.  It’s an uphill battle but, as a reminder, a win doesn’t matter for them, only points.  We’ll see if they can score more than 100 this week.

After a week getting comfortable sitting in that top spot, we got some feedback from the guys at the top.  It’s always a momentous occasion when you grab the #1 seed so we like to get owner comments on these occasions.  XFL Stars did release a statement this week following our request for comment:

“XFL is pumped to have just won our 4th consecutive weekly high scorer award while dealing with injuries from Waller, Hurts, Deebo, and now Logan Thomas.  This past week we knew we were destined to keep the streak alive when Minshew rolled in looking like a character straight out of Top Gun.”

They added later that Top Gun just happens to be their favorite movie of all time.

One more week to go in this new, 14-week regular season.  Make sure to pause for a moment to appreciate that as you set your lineups this week.  One extra game of fantasy football for us lucky dogs.  Ahhhhh, yes.  Feels good.  Let that marinate and I’ll see you next week.

– RSO High Stakes League Storyteller

 

More Analysis by Matt Russell

Week 14 Street FA Report

Updated: December 7th 2021

Each week we will recommend a group of players that are owned in less than 75% of RSO leagues that should be rostered. Depending on roster and league sizes not all of these players may be available. For that, we will offer one (1) player that is owned in <25% of leagues as our Sleeper add.

Add of the Week

K.J. Osborn, WR – MIN (Owned 49%)

Week 13: 4 Rec/41 yards, 1 TD

The news from Minnesota is that Adam Thielen avoided a season-ending ankle injury but it is likely that he misses multiple weeks because of said injury. For fantasy purposes, that might as well read as season-ending with only one (1) more week regular season week for most leagues. K.J. Osborn has already shown that he can have a high ceiling, scoring over 14 PPR points in three (3) weeks while Thielen was still in the lineup so his ascendance to the WR2 role should elevate his weekly floor over the final month of 2021. If you were planning on Thielen being a part of your playoff roster, Osborn is an obvious pickup this week.

Suggested Bid: $6,000,000

RB Adds

Carlos Hyde, RB – JAX (Owned 43%)

Week 13: 9 Car/24 yards, 1 TD, 1 Rec/-1 yard

For two (2) straight weeks James Robinson has fumbled and then been forced to split snaps with Carlos Hyde, much to fantasy managers’ chagrin. Nevertheless, when a coaching staff does not trust a player to execute they are not as likely to hold a large snap share so Hyde should continue to see his usage in the 40-50% range. At this point in the season it also makes sense to start “cuffing” any and all of the running backs that possesses a clear role in the case of injury to another starter. Hyde does not have much startability right now but any injury to Robinson, or another trip to Meyer’s dog house, could open up RB3 level production for him in December.

Suggested Bid: $500,000

Adrian Peterson, RB – SEA (Owned 42%)

Week 13: 11 Car/16 yards, 1 TD

Full disclosure I do not think Peterson has much of anything left in the tank and I am surprised that he was able to join a second club in 2021 after his extremely pedestrian production in three (3) games with Tennessee. However, in just half a week of practice with Pete Carroll the team gave him a co-lead for the number of touches in Week 13 and the Seahawks have three (3) of their next four (4) games against rushing defenses in the bottom 10 in yards allowed. The broadcast crew said that Carroll was giddy to have Peterson in the building and his style fits what the Seahawks want to be doing. It should be Rashaad Penny who leads the backfield down the stretch but do not be surprised if the coaching staff gives Peterson more work than we all expect.

Suggested Bid: $500,000

WR Adds

Breshad Perriman, WR – TB (Owned 16%)

Week 13: 1 Rec/5 yards

Remember in 2019 when Breshad Perriman came out of nowhere in the fantasy playoffs to score 34 and 17 fantasy points? Antonio Brown is suspended two (2) more games and there are questions about if the Buccaneers will welcome him back with open arms even after he finishes his served time. I do not think that the level of scoring will be happening in 2021 that happened in 2019, both Mike Evans and Chris Godwin were out with injuries, but it does mean that Perriman continues as the WR3 in Tampa. He played on 84 percent of the snaps last week; Tyler Johnson was the WR4 with 13 percent, so once he has more practices with Tom Brady he may begin to see more targets. This is an offense that can throw 50 times a game winning or losing and thus there should be plenty of targets to go around.

Suggested Bid: $1,000,000

Josh Reynolds, WR – DET (Owned 38%)

Week 13: 4 Rec/69 yards

Lost in the theatrics of Amon-Ra St. Brown’s game winning touchdown was the fact that Josh Reynolds quietly put up double digit fantasy points for the second straight game since being claimed off waivers by Detroit. The Lions will continue to be in positive passing game script for the remainder of the season and thus Reynolds will continue to present a higher floor than most free agent wide receivers. Add him and start with confidence if your league is deep with flex/WR position.

Suggested Bid: $1,000,000

TE Add

Ricky Seals-Jones, TE – WAS (Owned 21%)

Week 13: N/A

Washington was likely slow playing the return of Ricky Seals-Jones as he practiced in limited capacity ahead of Week 13 but ultimately the coaching staff kept him out with Logan Thomas back. They will not have that luxury this week unfortunately as Thomas suffered what should be a season-ending knee injury. This means that Ricky Seals-Jones will immediately return to the TE1 role he had before being injured. In his first three (3) games as the starter for Thomas, Seals-Jones scored 9, 15, and 11 PPR points which is a solid floor for the free agent tight end position. If he is healthy enough to be in the lineup Week 14 and beyond he should present low TE1/consistent TE2 value in most matchups.

Suggested Bid: $500,000

Sleeper Add (<25%)

Laquon Treadwell, WR – JAX (Owned 2.5%)

Week 13: 4 Rec/62 yards

It seems like a faint memory when in 2017 Laquon Treadwell was the rookie WR1 in drafts before falling further into obscurity each season from there. Over the last two (2) weeks in Jacksonville though, he has operated as the secondary option behind Laviska Shenault Jr. while averaging just shy of 10 PPR PPG. The coaching staff may be searching for answers as to what they can build around heading into next off-season and a soon-to-be 32 year old Marvin Jones likely is not in those plans. Treadwell is worth a stash for the remainder of the season and could be a low flex play some weeks.

Suggested Bid: $500,000

More Analysis by Nick Andrews