Archive for the ‘Value mining’ Category

david-ausberry2

Your first question is “who the hell is that guy in the picture?”. Then if you’re able to identify that it’s David Ausberry (if you successfully did that, you should probably go outside), your next question is “who the hell is David Ausberry?”. Fair enough, as he has a name which sounds more like he should be tending to his farm along the English countryside.

He’s an Oakland Raiders tight end, a position which has yet again been tapped dry, much like pretty much every other position on the Raiders’ roster. Over two seasons after being a seventh-round pick in 2011, Ausberry has caught just nine more footballs in his NFL career than you have in your NFL career.

But according to CSN Bay Area’s Scott Bair, he’ll get the esteemed first swing at the Raiders’ starting tight end vacancy after Brandon Myers departed for the Giants. Here’s how dire and thin the tight end position overall is in Oakland: Ausberry has three primary competitors for that starting spot (Richard Gordon, and rookies Nick Kasa and Mychal Rivera), and combined all four have a total of 10 career receptions. Yep.

Yet in the most extreme reaching, clawing sense, keeping Ausberry in mind as the darkest sleeper is something you should do. Nay, something you need to do.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deep Sleeping: Michael Floyd

michael-floyd-sit2

Hello there. This is a post in which we’ll bravely explore the dark and deepest depths of depth charts, looking for sleepers who are sometimes absurdly deep that you should watch out for either as a late-round flier, or an early season waiver wire add. I’ll also be wrong often in this post, so you can enjoy that too.

There’s a wide receiver in Arizona who’s potentially set to blossom in his suddenly new surroundings, and this wide receiver is not named Larry Fitzgerald.

Oh, he’ll go boom too surely, and start to do far more Larry Fitzgerald-like things following a season spent dealing with the ilk of Brian Hoyer, Ryan Lindley, and John Skelton after Kevin Kolb combusted behind an offensive line that allowed a league worst 58 sacks. Around these parts, though, we’re more interested in late-round value and exploiting it, and then never shutting up about our superior intelligence.

We’re more interested in Michael Floyd.

Read the rest of this entry »

reggie-wayne-TD2

Most of the fantasy footballing matters we discuss around these parts in July and August are tied to each player’s average draft position (ADP, to use the proper street lingo and maintain our cred in the ‘hood). We discuss the fluctuating ADPs, and where exactly they’re fluctuating to.

We do this because a search for value is at the core of fantasy draft season, and said search is rooted in where your investment is best spent. Continually, we attempt to assess a player’s current valuation, and if at that price you’ll be getting the return you anticipated, or if your fake money or draft pick is better spent elsewhere during that particular area of your draft. That’s always the goal: to maximize the value of each pick.

So one day (this day) I said to myself “self, if you’re always writing about ADP anyways and mentioning it in nearly every post, why not dedicate a weekly post to a specific ADP matter?” And thus, this post was born. The making of the creative sausage here is indeed a delicate process.

Sometimes it’ll be a player, or sometimes it’ll be an entire position, but every week we’ll discuss a way in which you can better maximize value based on current ADPs. Of course, there’s never a definitive strategy, and many a league can be won by contradicting what’s written below in this week’s discussion, and taking Calvin Johnson with your first-round pick. As always, we’re exploring here.

Like yesterday then, grab your shovel and green hat. Let’s dig in.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deep Sleeping: Zach Sudfeld

zach-sudfeld2

Hello there. This is a post in which we’ll bravely explore the dark and deepest depths of depth charts, looking for sleepers who are sometimes absurdly deep that you should watch out for either as a late-round flier, or an early season waiver wire add. I’ll also be wrong often in this post, so you can enjoy that too.

There will be some footballs thrown to unfamiliar hands this season in New England. Thus is the nature of Tom Brady’s existence, as he could begin the season without his top five receivers from last year if Rob Gronkowski lands on the PUP list. Combined Gronk, Aaron Hernandez, Wes Welker, Brandon Lloyd, and Danny Woodhead caught 338 passes last year. Toss in the departures of depth receivers like Visanthe Shiancoe, Donte Stallworth, and Deion Branch, and the changeover among the Patriots’ pass catchers is downright stunning.

But not nearly as stunning as the sudden rise of Jake Ballard, and the assumption that he’ll just slide right in and be just fine thanks while replacing Hernandez. Ballard is several things, and none of them help him to resemble a player who’s even close to the caliber of tight end Brady was throwing to with his Gronkowski/Hernandez tandem.

He’s fragile, with his knee still assembled using band-aids and spit. He only reached 100 percent status a few weeks ago after microfracture and reconstruction surgery on his knee in February of 2012, and even during OTAs he still “appeared rigid“.

And most importantly, he lacks speed, and any sort of downfield presence. He ran a 4.99 in the 40-yard dash at the Scouting Combine during his draft year, which means wiener dogs would lap him several times. He’s always been more of a classic, space eating large target tight end, the kind of breed that’s gradually fading.

You know who doesn’t fit that description? Zach Sudfeld.

Read the rest of this entry »

gronkowski-black2

Here’s what we know about Rob Gronkowski’s Week 1 status: very little.

Here’s what we’ll know about Rob Gronkowski’s Week 1 status a week from now: very little.

Here’s what w…yeah, you’re seeing the pattern here. We’ll know nothing or slightly above nothing until training camp begins, and even then we’ll continue to know very little. Giving you valuable life knowledge is not the Belichikian way.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deep Sleeping: Robert Woods

Robert-Woods2

Hello there. This is a post in which we’ll bravely explore the dark and deepest depths of depth charts, looking for sleepers who are sometimes absurdly deep that you should watch out for either as a late-round flier, or an early season waiver wire add. I’ll also be wrong often in this post, so you can enjoy that too.

I look at ADPs a whole lot in July and August. And think about them a lot, and scrutinize them a lot, and generally let them consume my existence. My mom says I’m cool.

Now that we’re into July and leagues currently drafting aren’t drafting stupid early and they’re just drafting sort of early, the average draft position of many players — from the premier quarterbacks to the sleeper wide receivers — will fluctuate, and sometimes wildly. This is part of the process, as every brave degenerate attempts to finalize each valuation.

But about those sleeper wide receivers: there could be a lot of them. Just like last year and, well, most years, the wide receiver position is set to be awesomely deep. Example: right about now you can get DeSean Jackson — the fast option in Chip Kelly’s new offense that will very much favor the skills of fast options — at about 85th overall.

Inevitably, the great tumble of the wide receivers each summer will lead to a few names with questionable ADPs lingering late into the draft, though they have a high upside. They descend to the proverbial burial ground of the late-round sleeper, or if they sink further, maybe even early season waiver claim territory.

But there’s at least one name who’s firmly in this sleeper territory, and it’s a place where he doesn’t belong because of the opportunities and target volume he’s about to receive: Robert Woods.

Read the rest of this entry »

bernard2

I’m not quite sure how worried we should be about Bernard Pierce taking a nice, fat kid bite out of Ray Rice’s carries, and therefore also Rice’s overall production potential. My reactionary spidey senses say probably not very worried. If the worried scale we’re using has “dammit, forgot to lock the front door” at one end at “OH GAWD there’s a fire (sale?)” on the other, we should definitely lean much more towards the former.

But oh, the worry is there, and it’s real.

Read the rest of this entry »