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Fleaflicker's Most Added and Dropped: Week 9


Sometimes two statements can be both totally contradictory and totally true. Technically the Miami Dolphins are trying their hardest to win every game. Also technically, when you let Ryan Fitzpatrick throw the ball 34 times, you aren't really trying to win that game. And sometimes a professional football game can technically be played by non-professional football players. Aren't contradictions fun? Before we get to the Week 8 action, let us check in on our titans of terrible as they fight to pick first in next year's draft.

It was another exciting week in the race towards the bottom as Atlanta, Cincinnati, and Miami all briefly lost focus on their main goal by not getting completely blown out. All three teams eventually came away with the losses their hearts truly desired, but the Falcons took a big step back in this race by letting Julio Jones gain 151 yards. Fortunately, they were still able to scrape together a seven-point loss to Seattle. Cincinnati continued to play less like Bengal tigers and more like '80's super-group, The Bangles, losing to the Rams by two touchdowns. Now they'll have to prove their dedication to the cause by failing to utilize A.J. Green as their best wide receiver. If he ever actually suits up for them.

The Dolphins kept swimming toward the ocean's floor despite jumping out to a quick 14-0 lead on the road against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Ultimately, Fitzpatrick bailed them out on the strength of his two interceptions, four sacks, and two fumbles. Fitzpatrick finished with a 28.9 quarterback-rating and the Dolphins followed up their seventh-straight loss by trading Kenyan Drake to Arizona. Check, and mate. It goes to show that just as the cream will always rise to the top, curdled cream will always sink to the bottom. And in the sweltering heat of Miami, the milk went bad a long time ago. Now that everyone is caught, up let's look back at last week's action before taking a glance at some of the biggest risers and fallers in Fleaflicker leagues entering Week 9.

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Last Week's Recap

Quarterbacks took a backseat to the skill positions last week, with no slinger of footballs cracking the top-five in overall scoring. Instead, the pack (and the Packers) was led by Green Bay and San Francisco running backs Aaron Jones and Tevin Coleman, who each finished with 37 points in standard leagues. Jones was even deadlier in PPR, hauling in 7-of-8 targets for 159 yards and two touchdowns. It seems that his owners can finally exhale after the disastrous performance in Week 6 that led to Jamaal Williams briefly usurping Jones in the Packers backfield. Latavius Murray continued to be an interchangeable part of the New Orleans offense, admirably covering again for an injured Alvin Kamara and scoring 29 points on 157 total yards and two touchdowns. With Murray continuing to succeed, Kamara's owners must be continuing to sweat wondering just how many touches Murray will eat up upon Kamara's eventual return to action.

There were only two receivers in the top tier of scoring this week, with the respective 35 and 34 points of Mike Evans and Cooper Kupp far outpacing Kenny Golladay sitting in third place with his measly 24 points. Darius Slayton of the New York Giants announced his presence to the fantasy world, scoring 19 points on fifty yards and two touchdowns. The aforementioned Julio Jones almost cost the Falcons a loss with his 151 yards, and oh look, Michael Thomas scored another touchdown and went over 100 yards for the fourth time this season. "What a big surprise," said no one.

Three quarterbacks tied for the lead in scoring in Week 8, with Aaron Rodgers, Deshaun Watson, and Daniel Jones all scoring 27 points in their respective matchups. 322 yards and four touchdowns were a welcome sight for all the owners who opened up their wallets to grab Jones after he went off for 34 points in his first career start back in Week 3, but who has only scored a total of 34 points in his four starts since. We've (I've) learned our lesson about doubting Aaron Rodgers by now, right? The king of cheese in the NFC North has now thumbed his mustache at doubters by leading the position in points scored for the last two weeks.  Rodgers now sits at fourth in fantasy scoring on the season after throwing for over 3oo yards and three touchdowns in a road win against the still Patrick Mahomes-less Kansas City Chiefs.

Speaking of national treasures, I miss everything about the joyful little unicorn of delight that is Patrick Mahomes. The hair, the ketchup on steak, the humility...all of it. Most of all, I miss the electrifying way he lights up the field every week. I may not own Mahomes on any teams this season but that didn't stop me from creating a petition on change.org that urges Nic Cage to center his next movie around solving a series of historical clues in order to track down a new robot knee for Mahomes. And if my Nic Cage lookalike won't do it, then I will. Because regardless of what Burt Bacharach says, what the football world actually needs right now is the homespun charm of the perfectly delightful Mahomes.

Before I grab Riley and go off to steal the Declaration of Independence, let's take a look at three of this week's biggest risers and fallers on Fleaflicker.com. A full list of the most added and dropped players on Fleaflicker can be found here.

 

Most Added in Fleaflicker - Week 9

Darren Fells (TE, HOU @ JAC), 4914 Adds  49% Owned

Much like catcher in fantasy baseball in 2019, it's clear that tight ends in 2020 are a desolate wasteland that no one wishes to traverse. Things are even direr in Week 9, with three of the top-13 scorers at the position either on bye or lying at home with a ruptured Achilles tendon. And yet, the No. 7 scorer in standard leagues (only two points behind San Francisco's George Kittle) is somehow still available in almost half of all leagues on Fleaflicker.com. Fells is coming off of his best performance of the season, catching all six of his targets for 58 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-24 win over Oakland. In Week 9, Fells and Houston take on a Jacksonville defense that has been recently weakened by the departure of All-Pro Jalen Ramsey. The Jaguars have allowed the 12th-most point to tight ends this year but most recently got lit up by the little-known (and little-owned) Ryan Griffin in a 29-15 win over the New York Jets. Griffin caught four balls for 66 yards and two touchdowns, after coming into the game with a total of 46 yards and nine receptions for the season. Grab Fells now before he falls completely off the waiver wire and onto another team.

Chris Conley (WR, JAC vs. HOU), 2875 Adds34% Owned

Lesser-known and lesser-owned than teammates D.J. Chark and Dede Westbrook, Conley has burst onto the fantasy scene having now scored double-digit points in back-to-back weeks. After putting up 15 points in a Week 1 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, Conley was relegated to the missing section of the milk carton over the Jaguars' next five games, collecting only eight receptions and 13 total points in standard leagues. Things started looking up in Week 7, as the former Georgia Bulldog scored 10 points on 83 yards and a two-point conversion. Conley stayed up in Week 8, hauling in 4-of-7 targets for 103 yards and a touchdown, finishing with 18 points. His arrow has a good chance to stay pointing up in Week 9, as the Houston Texans will travel across the pond to face the unofficial London Jaguars with a defense that is allowing the second-most points to wide receivers in 2019. While Conley is still behind Chark and Westbrook in the pecking order, both of those receivers are currently dealing with injuries that left them limited in this past Thursday's practice. Even if both are healthy and active, there should be enough balls for quarterback Gardner Minshew to distribute against a defense that most recently allowed 190 yards and three touchdowns to the Oakland trio of Darren Waller, Tyrell Williams, and Hunter Renfrow in a 27-24 win over the Raiders. Grab Conley to use as a bye-week replacement or just grab him as an excuse to be fancy and say "tally-ho, old chap", if and when he scores a touchdown early Sunday morning in jolly old England.

Jaylen Samuels (RB, PIT vs. IND), 2629 Adds61% Owned

Also known as the last man standing, it looks like Samuels will be the Pittsburgh Steelers only real option in the backfield when they take on the Indianapolis Colts at home on Sunday, with teammate James Conner unlikely to play after again missing practice on Thursday as he recovers from a shoulder injury. With backup Benny Snell Jr. also set to miss multiple weeks after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, it leaves only Samuels to pick up the slack in the running game with the Steelers set to face a Colts team that has allowed the ninth-fewest points to running backs in 2019. After missing the last month with a knee injury of his own, Samuels now has a chance to reclaim his spot as Connor's backup upon the latter's return. Pittsburgh was creative with their usage of Samuels before he got injured in a Week 5 loss to Baltimore, lining him up on the outside as well as in the slot. A matchup against a stout Indianapolis run defense isn't ideal, but if Connors is inactive then Samuels should receive the lion's share of Pittsburgh's carries, seeing that the only other running back on the Steelers roster is someone named Trey Edmunds. I'll wait while you Google him.

 

Most Dropped in Fleaflicker - Week 9

Chase Edmonds (RB, ARI vs. SF), 2954 Drops – 52% Owned

Well, that didn't last long! After scoring a combined 59 points in the last three weeks - including a three-touchdown performance in Week 7 in replacement of the oft-injured David Johnson - Edmonds was one of fantasy's most-added players headed into a Week 8 matchup with the New Orleans Saints, with Johnson again inactive. This made total sense given Arizona's fantasy-friendly offense but then Edmonds went down with a hamstring injury after just seven carries against the Saints, ironically hamstringing all of his fantasy owners as they were running away from what they thought was a prime waiver-wire heist. His stock continued to drop after the Cardinals traded for Miami's Kenyan Drake last Monday and Edmonds was chased even further down the depth chart after Arizona's newest back went off for 162 yards and a touchdown in a Week 9 loss to the 49ers on Thursday night. Even if he only misses the couple of weeks that head coach Kliff Kingsbury is expecting, Edmonds will likely return as the Cardinals third back behind Johnson and Drake. It was a great run while it lasted but feel free to chase Edmonds back to the wire from which he came as soon you need a roster spot.

Ty Johnson (RB, DET @ OAK), 2068 Drops – 43% Owned

Remember when Kerryon Johnson went down with a knee injury and owners across fantasy football opened up their FAAB wallet to spend big on his speedy backup Ty Johnson? It turns out that just like the evil Nazi in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, those owners chose...poorly. While their heads may not have melted after drinking from the expensive chalice that was the other Johnson, those who bought and started Ty were destroyed by his three fantasy points. Tra Carson actually got the start for the Lions as part of what turned out to be a four-man running back committee. Sometimes fantasy football can be hard but sometimes it can be simple; if you're sharing carries with the likes of Carson, J.D. McKissic, and Paul Perkins, then you simply can't be trusted with a start. To answer your question: Yes, Paul Perkins still plays football. And no, he hasn't gotten any better. While Johnson still has play-breaking speed, he's no more than a low-end flex heading into a Week 9 matchup against an Oakland Raiders team that's allowing the 14th-fewest points per game to opposing running backs.

Gerald Everett (TE, LAR, Bye), 1459 Drops – 52% Owned

Another casualty of the never-ending carousel of nightmares that is the tight end position in 2019, Everett's 41 points through eight weeks may not sound like much, but they're actually enough to make him the 11th-highest scoring tight end this season. The bye week cometh, however, and many owners are now shuffling Everett off of their team in order to dumpster dive on the waiver wire for the likes of Jack Doyle or Jonnu Smith. Everett has been the epitome of boom-or-bust through eight weeks, putting up double-digit points in three of his eight games, but only two or fewer points in his other five. Drop Everett now but don't forget about him, as he should have a prime matchup in Week 10 against a Pittsburgh Steelers Defense that's allowing the eighth-most points to opposing tight ends this year.

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