Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Disaster Recovery Week 14: Worried About Gurley?


Welcome to Disaster Recovery, where each week I'll examine why your studs played like duds.

This isn't a place to find out why you should have benched a player for somebody on your bench. Disaster Recovery is to examine the guys who you didn't think twice about benching, and deciding if you should be panicking at all about their value moving forward.

This season we'll be covering one dud per week. There will be two major qualifiers: the player must have performed well below expectations without an injury, and the player must be considered a must-start in most formats.

Editor's Note: Get any rest-of-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive DFS Tools, Lineup Optimizer and Premium DFS Research through the Super Bowl. Sign Up Now!

 

Rankings System

I'll also be implementing a new panic meter ranking system this year. It goes as follows:

  1. This week was a fluke. Don't panic!
  2. I still have full faith in this player, but there are some red flags. Be cautiously optimistic moving forward.
  3. There are genuine concerns here. Consider selling on name value, but don't panic too much unless you receive an offer you can't refuse.
  4. This player will not be the player you expected him to be. Regardless, his value may be too low to trade, and his ceiling is going to be better than anything you can get in return. Panic, but hold tight.
  5. Absolutely abandon ship. We're not coming back from this.

For what feels like the first time in ages, Todd Gurley has finally had a bad game. Let's talk about it.

 

Running From The Run

Todd Gurley's Week 14 stat-line: 11 rushes for 28 yards along with three receptions for 30 yards.

Todd Ain't God

Well, it's official: Todd Gurley isn't human. Gurley was completely bottled up on his limited touches against the Bears on Sunday Night Football. It was a defining moment for the Bears. They manhandled a Rams offense that many consider to be the NFL's finest. Maybe defense isn't dead after all?

Gurley's two best runs of the day went for twelve and nine yards respectively. Take those two runs away and he had nine rushes for seven yards. Gurley struggled to get anything going. He shares a small portion of the blame, but most falls on the shoulders of what was happening around him.

Where are the Touches?

It's hard to find a reason why the Rams decided to run Gurley just 11 times in what ended up being the worst game of Jared Goff's career. Sure, they were playing from behind, but the Bears never even had a double-digit lead. The defense was playing well enough to trust them to get the stops Los Angeles would need to win.

The truth is that Sean McVay loves throwing the football. He can't get enough of it. And for the most part this season, that hasn't been a problem. The Rams have shredded teams through the air, and Jared Goff was an early MVP candidate. They're going to continue to throw the ball a ton. This team works best when they can balance both the run and the pass.

That's what was so surprising about the Bears game. They didn't even attempt to have a balanced offense. In Goff's two other duds this season, the Rams were able to overcome his poor play and claw their way to victory thanks to Gurley. Against Denver and Detroit, the two games where Goff struggled most up until this week, Gurley had a combined 51 carries for 340 yards and two touchdowns. The Bears run defense is much better than those two teams, but the Rams really didn't give themselves a chance to get the run going. That's a slight concern.

 

Path to the Finals

The Matchups Ahead

If you survived Week 14 with Gurley's dud, congratulations. You must have a hell of a team around him. And if you can make it to Week 16, Gurley should lead you to the promised land. The Cardinals have been decimated by running backs all season long, and game flow should benefit Gurley greatly. He's going to eat in that game. 

This week's matchup against the Eagles is the only real concern. Gurley should be fine. McVay should give Gurley a ton of carries to make up for last week's bizarre gameplan. He should put up enough yards and touchdowns to lead you to the fantasy promised land.

But let's play devil's advocate for a second here. Jared Goff is coming off the worst game of this NFL career. He's coming off back-to-back poor performances. The Eagles secondary has been decimated by injuries this season. They don't have the bodies to keep up with the Rams passing attack. Dak Prescott just threw for 434 yards against them. Amari Cooper finally completed his transformation from Laquon Treadwell to Jerry Rice in this game. The Eagles simply have no answers in the secondary right now...

...so the Rams should actually throw the ball a ton in this game, right? It's the perfect "get right" game for Goff. He should be able to pick apart this defense. Expect big games from Goff, Robert Woods, and Brandin Cooks. McVay loves his passing offense, and this is a chance to get at the level it belongs.

Panic Meter: 2/5

Please note that this meter is on the scale of "should I be worried that Todd Gurley won't do Todd Gurley things?" and not "should I consider benching Todd Gurley?"

The truth is that it shouldn't matter if the Rams throw the ball enough. Honestly, we should be hoping they do.

Gurley has been so dominant this season because he's the Rams go-to option in the red zone, and they are always in the red zone. He's scored 18 of his 19 touchdowns in the red zone. His yardage totals have been great, but the touchdowns are what made this such a memorable fantasy season. The Rams love giving him the ball in the red zone. If Goff is the one getting them that far, so be it. Gurley should be able to find plenty of scoring opportunities if the Rams passing game bounces back.

The small number on the panic meter is just incase the Rams don't bounce back in the passing game. Goff has played horribly for the past two weeks. The Rams need him to bounce back. I expect that he will.

What To Watch For

Just make sure the Rams offense looks competent again. They've been rocky since their historic game against the Chiefs a few weeks ago. This whole unit needs a bounce-back game.

More Fantasy Football Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

Bases Loaded Podcast - Relief Pitchers Preview

Mike Kurland (@Mike_Kurland) is joined by Jorge Montanez, Zach Braff and Mike Simione as they jump into their relief pitcher preview! Subscribe to the Bases Loaded podcast, part of RotoBaller Radio's Podcast Network. Like and Subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us on iTunes and BlogTalkRadio as well!... Read More


2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers - Jose Urquidy

It's been a tumultuous winter for the Houston Astros. Not only were they embroiled in a sign-stealing scandal (which has, naturally, progressed apace to unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about ever more sophisticated methods of cheating), but they watched staff ace Gerrit Cole sign a mammoth free-agent deal with the Yankees. Plenty of virtual ink has been... Read More


2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers - Mark Canha

Mark Canha had a solid 2019 campaign and is one player that probably deserves more attention heading into 2020 than he is currently receiving. He finished the season hitting .273/.396/.517 with 26 HR, 58 RBI, 80 R, and 67 BB in 410 at-bats. It was a very productive line for a guy that played in... Read More


Four Prospect Sleepers for 2020 Redraft Leagues

Recently, Rotoballer launched a list of the Top 50 MLB prospects for the coming year. The top of the list was populated by names such as Gavin Lux, Luis Robert, and Brendan McKay. These players, among others, feature a promising combination of talent and favorable playing time projections to suggest they’ll be the cream-of-the-crop among... Read More


ADP Cost Analysis – Robbie Ray vs Trevor Bauer

With fantasy baseball draft season in full swing, those of us who partake in this joyous game are now looking through as much draft data as possible in a bid to find players we love who have lower average draft positions (ADP) than we believe they should. All this to eke out as much draft... Read More


2020 Keeper Value Rankings - Second Base

Keeper Value Rankings are intended for Keeper Leagues in which a fantasy owner must forfeit a designated draft pick in order to keep a player into the upcoming season. These rankings are based on Keeper "Values". In the marketing world, Value can be defined as "the extent to which a good or service (player) is... Read More


2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers – C.J. Cron

As another fantasy baseball season approaches, we once again have the chance to discuss C.J. Cron as a fantasy sleeper. Cron will be playing for his third team in three seasons. It is tough to wrap one's head around the idea that a player of Cron's talent continues to be undervalued by professional and fantasy... Read More


2020 Starting Pitcher Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Points leagues may seem like a slight variation from traditional 5x5 category scoring leagues but you must approach draft day with a very different strategy if you wish to truly compete. All preseason long, RotoBaller has you covered with the latest rankings for all fantasy baseball league types. Here we present our points league rankings... Read More


Second-Half Improvements: Buy Into These Starting Pitchers

The second half of the season is always put under a microscope for starting pitchers. Fantasy players have a love for the second half of the season, as the belief is that pitchers who take a step forward could carry over that success the next season and perhaps even build upon it. But, as we... Read More


How to Attack RP in SV+HLD Leagues

No position has seen as much evolution in recent seasons as the relief pitcher. Gone are the days where starters were expected to go seven innings as most teams have embraced the idea of "super-bullpening" and try to fit as many pitchers that can throw 95+ MPH into their bullpen as they can. Many fantasy... Read More


Using Sabermetrics for Fantasy Baseball: Pitch Info

One of the most fundamental questions in fantasy sports is if a player's current performance is sustainable. More than any other sport, baseball has a slew of statistical measures that can be dissected in numerous ways to analyze player performance. Pitch Info is a publicly-available pitch tracking system that provides a lot of different data to... Read More


2020 Fantasy Baseball Staff Rankings

Below you will find RotoBaller's 2020 fantasy baseball rankings, tiers and auction dollar values for the 2020 MLB season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Mixed, Head-to-Head, Points, AL/NL Only, Two-Catcher Top 2020 prospects, Dynasty leagues, Keeper values Export the rankings easily... Read More


Mock Draft Review: Best Late-Round Targets

Last week, some members of the RotoBaller staff completed a 12-team mock draft for standard 5x5 format. After the draft, we each broke down our strategy and some of our favorite picks, which can be found here. However, I want to take a closer look at one portion of the draft in particular. Since we know that... Read More


Faster and Furious: Pitchers with Rising Velocity/Performance

Welcome fantasy baseball players! I’m sure that you, like me, are anxiously counting down the days until your drafts and Opening Day. While the fantasy season may not start for several weeks, there are plenty of things we can do to start preparing for a successful season. One of those things is to take a good... Read More


James Karinchak Is A Relief Pitcher To Know in 2020

One of the lesser-known players that intrigues me for the 2020 MLB season is Indians relief pitcher James Karinchak. The former Bryant Bulldog was drafted by Cleveland in the ninth round in the 2017 draft and went on to have one of the most outrageous statistical seasons in minor league baseball history. As someone who... Read More