Fantasy Sleepers, General

Seahawks Release WR Doug Baldwin, S Kam Chancellor

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Seattle Seahawks

Image courtesy of Troy Wayrynen, USA Today Sports.

WR Doug Baldwin was unable to pass his physical and was released today by the Seattle Seahawks due to the cumulative effects of injuries suffered, including various knee, shoulder and groin injuries as well as recovery from a sports hernia surgery.

Signed as an undrafted free agent in 2011, Baldwin caught 493 passes for 6,563 yards and 49 TD during his tenure with Seattle. He also was part of the Super Bowl XLVIII-winning team that trounced the Broncos 43-8; Baldwin caught all 5 of his targets for 66 yards and a TD in an effort that saw the Seahawks dominate in all three phases of the game.

We here at Far From Fantasy wish Baldwin the best of luck in his future endeavors.

In other Seahawks news, the team has also released S Kam Chancellor as he also failed his physical. Two iconic players in the team’s franchise history are gone, just like that.

Chancellor was drafted in the 5th round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He was an integral part of the feared ‘Legion of Boom’; the legendary secondary consisting of Chancellor, free safety Earl Thomas III and cornerback Richard Sherman. Chancellor finishes his Seahawks’ tenure with 641 combined tackles (17 for loss), 9 forced fumbles, 3 fumble recoveries, 44 passes deflected, and 12 interceptions.

Due to the nature of both players’ injury histories, it’s unlikely either play in the NFL for another team. Far From Fantasy wishes Chancellor well in his life post-NFL.

 

 

Fantasy Sleepers, General

Patriots Sign Veteran TE Benjamin Watson

Detroit Lions v New Orleans Saints

Image courtesy of Chris Graythen, Getty Images.

 

After going from team to team, Watson’s career has come full-circle.

The veteran tight end has signed with the New England Patriots, the team he was drafted by in 2004 (32nd overall). The deal is for one-year, worth $3M.

Watson joins a tight end room that includes Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Matt LaCosse, Ryan Izzo, Stephen Anderson and undrafted rookie Andrew Beck. With the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, there will be a multitude of passes going the way of a few of the aforementioned guys in the 2019 NFL season.

Watson’s retirement was clearly a short-lived one. Heading into the 2019 season, Watson has 5,885 receiving yards and 44 TD receptions; 20 of them were with the Patriots from 2005-2009.

We’ll find out in short order which of these TEs makes the final roster. My prediction? ASJ, Watson, and LaCosse with a possible fourth being Beck.

General

What Kevin Durant’s Injury Means for Golden State

KD Warriors

Image courtesy of Kevin Jairaj.

Two words: Absolutely nothing.

The Warriors were winning championships before KD put on the blue and yellow. Don’t get me wrong, KD being out of commission is not ideal, but the Warriors are a team that can survive without him.

You have Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green still balling out. Andre Igoudala will certainly have an increased role in a Durant-less Warriors attack, but guys like Kevon Looney and Andrew Bogut will no doubt have additional minutes doled out to them.

The Warriors have the 3-2 lead over the Rockets, and I don’t see them dropping two straight just from the Durant injury. Expect Curry, Thompson and Green to have big games in an effort to put the series away tomorrow (Friday) night in Houston.

DFS Lineups, DFS Value Plays, Fantasy Sleepers, Start/Sit

NBA Showdown (Playoffs; 04/25/2019)

The NBA Playoffs have been in full swing for a little while now. The slate for tonight (Thursday, April 25th) consists of one game – Game 6 between the Denver Nuggets and San Antonio Spurs, which starts at 8:00 P.M. EDT.

With there not being many options for your Showdown lineup, let’s evaluate some of the top Captain options, depending on your strategy:

Value Captain Plays

SG Gary Harris, DEN ($10,500, $7,000 regular)

My most expensive value play of the night, Harris has been struggling over his last two games. He’s scored less than 25 DK points in both games, while adding little statistical contribution other than in points (23 points combined during the aforementioned span).

I’m predicting a rebound night for Harris, which will land him somewhere in the 30-35 DKP range (the 32.3 DKP on 04/16 being his highest total of the series thus far). His rebound totals over the series thus far have been modest at best, landing between averaging between 3-5 most nights. For Harris to be worth playing in your Captain spot tonight, he needs to put up 15+ points, 5+ rebound and at least 2 assists. A block, steal or both would be nice as well. Like I said, 30-35 DKP is a good night for Harris, although you may want to go cheaper with guys like…

C Jakob Poeltl, SAS ($8,400 Captain, $5,600 regular)

Poeltl has been getting steadily better over the series, scoring double-digit points in two of his last three games and consistently putting up 7+ boards as his assist numbers slowly rise. He’s up against a tough matchup in Denver’s Nikola Jokic (an obvious top play of the slate), but he’s getting 23-26+ points out of a guy this cheap is not a bad idea to help stack the rest of your lineup. Ideally, Poeltl needs at least 10+ points and get himself close to a double-double with 8+ rebounds. If he can notch a block or two, any assists are just gravy on top of the mashed potatoes. Getting ~40+ DKP out of Poeltl in your Captain slot is a good night (that mean’s he’ll need at least 26.75 DKP normally).

SG Torrey Craig, DEN ($5,700 Captain, $3,800 regular)

Okay, so Craig had a relatively bad night in an 18-point win Tuesday night, scoring just one point.. but he salvaged what would have been a terrible night with 10 boards. Keep in mind Craig only attempted one field goal (1-2 FT). He attempted 16 FGs over the previous two games, so look at Tuesday’s performance as an outlier. With Craig being implemented as a starter over teammate Will Barton, he’s seen heavy minutes over his past two games, and I don’t see that changing tonight. As long as Craig is starting, expect him to be a candidate for 25+ DKP (although admittedly, it’s a little more of a gamble than guys like Harris or Poeltl). I can see Craig scoring 13 points tonight, hitting 4 of 8 FG attempts (2-5 3PM/A, 2-2 FT). Along with 13 points, a rebound total of 7+ along with a steal or two would solidify Craig’s justification in the Captain slot, ending his night at 26.75 (40.125 in Captain slot) assuming he gets two steals.

Stud Captain Plays

C Nikola Jokic, DEN ($17,400 Captain, $11,600 regular)

Not really much to say, he’s clearly going to be a top Captain play due to his consistent numbers across the stat sheet. Jokic has failed to get above 45 DKP just once thus far in the series, which means he’s almost a lock for 67.5+ DKP in the Captain slot tonight.

The one downside to putting Jokic at Captain of course is the limitations it places across the rest of your lineup. Of course, Craig and Poeltl normally only take up $9,400 your $50,000 salary.. but Jokic alone takes almost 2/5th of that at $17,400. So the three combined at $26,800 leaves $23,200 for three positions.. not a lot of room to add another top stud like LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMar DeRozan or Jamal Murray.

PF LaMarcus Aldridge, SAS ($14,700 Captain, $9,800 regular)

Aldridge is not as strong of a lock in the Captain slot as Jokic, however he’s put up 35+ DKP over his last four games. Aldridge is a constant candidate for an explosive night as the Nuggets continue to place defensive attention on teammate DeMar DeRozan (as evidenced by the latter’s FG% over his last two games, not so coincidentally due to the change-up by Denver to bring Torrey Craig into the starting lineup).

Of course, in your Captain slot, Aldridge would ideally score 60+ DKP (40+ regular).. this isn’t out of the realm of possibility, since it’s happened twice thus far this series, but it’s not a guarantee. A great part of choosing Aldridge is the $2,700 you save over having Jokic at Captain. That extra flexibility could be a good thing and help set your lineup apart.

PG Jamal Murray, DEN ($13,500 Captain, $9,000 regular)

Murray’s had a strong series overall, albeit a miserable Game 3 on April 18th, only scoring 11.3 DKP in the 118-108 loss. In all of Murray’s strong games this series, he’s topped 20+ points scored – his last two games have also seen him notch 13 assists.

I don’t think Murray will score 40+ DKP again tonight, however 35-39 is a strong possibility. His last two strong games AGAIN correlate with the implementation of Craig in the starting lineup. Murray is, in my opinion, one of the safer plays of the slate.

 

General

PSA: The New England Patriots Aren’t Done

Tom Brady defied Father Time yet again and helped lead the New England Patriots to their sixth Super Bowl championship. At age 41, Brady became the oldest starting quarterback to win a Super Bowl. The question on everyone’s mind now; when will the Patriots’ dynasty give way?

If you’re not a Patriots fan, I’ve got bad news for you: it’s not going to be the 2019 season. It might not even be the 2020 season either.

Tom Brady defies Father Time by getting the ball out of his hand so damn fast, reading pressure, picking apart defenses and taking advantage of key matchups in the secondary. He continues to work on improving despite storied success that has been unparalleled in the history of the NFL. In the words of many, including Shannon Sharpe, “You’re never going to see anything like this [Brady] again.” How right he is.

That being said, the Patriots’ window is surely closing – no doubt about that. Their long-term future obviously relies on the talent a successor to Tom Brady can bring to the team. They had plenty of talent in Jimmy Garoppolo before shipping him off to the San Francisco 49ers. New England should start getting serious about grooming a potential replacement in the event Brady gets injured in some way or his level of play falls tremendously.

The 2019 NFL Draft should be kind to the Patriots, who have 12 total picks including 5 in the first 100 (AND they have #101 overall). This gives them capital that could help land them a player like Antonio Brown, a star that clearly wants out of his situation in Pittsburgh with the Steelers – if they so choose. With Brady not getting any younger, the team could very well go into “win now” mode to maximize the remainder of his career. Acquiring Brown would do just that.

I think the Patriots need to prioritize signing DE Trey Flowers to a long-term deal. His versatility along the defensive line was a huge part of the defense’s 2019 success. Drafting another capable pass rusher to complement Flowers and the potential of Derek Rivers would be a great way to ensure a youthful defensive front for years to come.

New England has a bright future despite the sun setting on Brady’s career. If you’re hoping for a collapse sooner rather than later, you’re likely going to be disappointed.

DFS Lineups, DFS Value Plays, Fantasy Sleepers, Start/Sit

Jaguars Need To Trade For/Sign Nick Foles

Blake Bortles has never been and will never be the answer at the quarterback position in Jacksonville.

A solid defense led by a star cornerback in Jalen Ramsey needs to be complemented by a capable-enough offense. Bortles just can’t get the job done. Foles is a proven winner and would stand a much stronger chance of leading the Jaguars to a playoff berth of some kind. Assuming wide receiver Marqise Lee comes back healthy after missing all of last season, and the Jaguars possibly draft another receiver (or a tight end), this team could be one of the biggest sleepers of the 2019 NFL season.

If I were Shadid Khan, the owner of the Jaguars, I would be doing whatever I could (within reason) to acquire Nick Foles. Search for your next franchise quarterback in a future draft and pick up a proven winner now.

DFS Lineups, DFS Value Plays, Fantasy Sleepers

Pat’s Picks; NBA DFS (Main – 02/13/2019)

Right before the All-Star Break, we have a whopping 11 games on today’s Main slate.

Here are the list of games and their start times. Lock begins at 7:00 P.M.:

BKN Nets @ CLE Cavaliers (7:00 P.M.)
MIL Bucks @ IND Pacers (7:00 P.M.)
DET Pistons @ BOS Celtics (7:30 P.M.)
WAS Wizards @ TOR Raptors (7:30 P.M.)
PHI 76ers @ NY Knicks (7:30 P.M.)
MEM Grizzlies @ CHI Bulls (8:00 P.M.)
HOU Rockets @ MIN Timberwolves (8:00 P.M.)
MIA Heat @ DAL Mavericks (8:30 P.M.)
SAC Kings @ DEN Nuggets (9:00 P.M.)
PHO Suns @ LAC Clippers (10:30 P.M.)
GS Warriors @ POR Trail Blazers (10:30 P.M.)

Because it’s right before the break, some teams may opt to sit star players at the last minute to give them an extended rest before the final stretch of the regular season. With this in mind, my top choices of the slate will take advantage of this as well as some favorable matchups. They are:

Collin Sexton CLE

(Image courtesy of Fear The Sword; picture taken by Maddie Meyer of Getty Images)

PG Collin Sexton, Cleveland Cavaliers ($4,900 on DK; $5,500 on FD)

Sexton provides consistent value despite his price tag remaining in the low-to-mid five-thousands on both platforms. The rookie has averaged 19.25 field goal attempts per game over his last 4 contests and has scored over 25 DK points in each game during that span as well (scoring 41 in the 103-96 loss to Boston last Tuesday).

Up against a Brooklyn defense that allows close to 112 points per game, Sexton should have no trouble being inserted as a value play for DFS players tonight. I expect between 20-25 points as well as 3-5 rebounds, maybe 2 or 3 assists and a steal tonight. Without any turnovers, he’d tally 38.25 DK points with that line. Not bad for someone who costs $4,900.

SF/PF Gordon Hayward, Boston Celtics ($4,800 on DK; $5,300 on FD)

With the C’s down star PG Kyrie Irving (knee), Hayward sank 8 of his 11 field goal attempts (including 6 of 7 from 3-point range), as well his 4 free throws for 26 points in the 112-109 win over the high-powered 76ers last night. He added 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals in his 28 minutes for 39.5 DK points.

On the second half of a back-to-back prior to the All-Star break, Hayward and the Celtics host the Detroit Pistons.. this time without both Irving and, likely, backup PG Terry Rozier (illness; listed as doubtful as of this post). Hayward will see plenty of opportunities to score if Rozier is out as well, although I think Hayward would meet value regardless of whether Rozier plays or not.

If Rozier is out, SGs Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown as well as F Jayson Tatum would see boosts to their usage tonight.

The Pistons allow just under 110 points per game, but the combination of Detroit bigs in Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond have me holding off from either Marcus Morris or Al Horford tonight.

Somewhere around ~20 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and a steal would be a good night for Hayward (34.5 DK points without any turnovers) at his price tag, but he may be forced to carry more of the offensive workload with the team down Irving/Rozier. Hayward is one of many Celtics’ options tonight, but perhaps the safest ‘value play’.

C Karl Anthony-Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves ($10,300 on DK; $10,900 on FD)

The big man has averaged 28 points per game over his last 5. Houston’s Clint Capela (thumb) has rejoined the team but will not be available for tonight’s game against Minnesota. Kenneth Faried has played well in Capela’s stead, but KAT is virtually matchup-proof.

Despite the hefty price tag, I have complete confidence in KAT scoring over 55 DK points tonight against the Rockets. I’m predicting a monster double-double of at least 25 points, 15 rebounds.. but add in the 3-5 assists he may tally as well as his blocks/steals (possibly around 3-4 total), and that will pad his final stat line.

This final game before the All-Star break is a perfect chance for KAT to go all-in against the Rockets, a team considered to be one of the best in the West.

SG Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards ($8,700 on DK; $9,700 on FD)

Beal is likely going to go under the radar tonight on both platforms. With James Harden commanding a large percentage of ownership already, there are also a few value options at SG in Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown tonight (assuming Terry Rozier is out, like I mentioned above; see Gordon Hayward’s little tidbit). Allen Crabbe could also take ownership away from Beal because of Treveon Graham (personal) and Rodion Kurucs (elbow) being ruled out (Crabbe played 31 minutes the other day with those two playing a combined 36 minutes).

Don’t expect Beal to put up the monster stat line he put up last time the Wizards and Raptors played (43 points, 15 assists, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks and 2 steals in 54 minutes), but I think Beal puts on a show tonight against the Raptors. Beal has scored 30+ in his last 2 games, with multiple steals in each of his last 4.

Beal could help set a lineup apart tonight. With options like Harden, Devin Booker, DeAngelo Russell and a few key value plays out there, it’s likely Beal is the X-factor in a winning lineup.

SG/SF Landry Shamet, Los Angeles Clippers ($4,000 on DK; $4,600 on FD)

Given Shamet’s production with the Clippers since his trade from the Philadephia 76ers, I’m surprised he’s not priced in the $4,500-$5,000 range on DK. Shamet may not contribute immensely in other categories, but scoring 15+ points a game gives him a safe floor at his price range for a non-big.

Shamet could allow a DFS player to fit in some other quality options; as another option in the long list of players today, he could be another key factor to set a lineup apart.

I’m thinking 15-20 points, 2-3 rebounds and assists and perhaps a steal or two would be as good of a stat line as you could ask from Shamet tonight. If he gets 30+, that’s just the gravy on top. Against the Suns, expect the latter.

Best of luck everybody in your DFS lineups tonight!