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Fantasy Football Player Notes

2020 Draft Rankings
Ezekiel Elliott Note
Ezekiel Elliott photo 3. Ezekiel Elliott RB - (at NYG)
There's only one running back over the last five years who's finished top-six three times, and that's Elliott. Oddly enough, he's never finished as No. 1 though. The Cowboys passing offense just got better with the addition of CeeDee Lamb, and while that may put a cap on Elliott's targets in the passing game, he should be free to rock against seven-man fronts. He saw eight-plus defenders in the box 19.3 percent of the time last year, a number that may dip down into the single digits, provided the Cowboys go three-wide more often than not. Stop trying to find "the next big thing," because Elliott has proven time and time again that he's among the safest picks at the top of the draft. He's posted RB2 or better numbers in 92.9 percent of his career games, which is better than any running back I've ever charted. In fact, the closest is Le'Veon Bell, who's hit that mark 87.0 percent of the time.
14 weeks ago
Amari Cooper Note
Amari Cooper photo 35. Amari Cooper WR - (at NYG)
It's somewhat maddening that Cooper can't get the 150-plus targets that some do, as he's continually one of the most efficient receivers in the league. Did you know Michael Gallup averaged more targets per game than Cooper last year? Cooper's injury may have played into that but it didn't stop him from being one of the best in the league. Based on the number of his targets and where they took place on the field, Cooper should've finished as the No. 23 wide receiver, and not the No. 9 receiver he did. In fact, he was the only receiver in the league who scored 20-plus more fantasy points than he was expected to in both the red zone and outside the red zone. The addition of CeeDee Lamb isn't going to make getting targets any easier for Cooper, who's now seen 195 targets in 25 games with the Cowboys. Because he's not getting the gaudy numbers that some are, Cooper should be considered a semi-volatile WR2 in fantasy who has more WR1 upside than most on a weekly basis. If Cooper were to get 150 targets, I have zero doubts that he'd finish as a top-three receiver, but as we've seen, that just doesn't happen.
14 weeks ago
Dak Prescott Note
Dak Prescott photo 53. Dak Prescott QB - (at NYG)
We all know that Cam Newton was a pretty dang good fantasy quarterback throughout his career, right? Like, one of the best of this generation. Or how about Drew Brees, he's been extremely good and consistent throughout his career. What happens when we look at them and Prescott side-by-side? Prescott's numbers have been just as good, if not better. He's never finished outside the top-12 quarterbacks and is about to play in the same system that just netted him the QB2 finish. Did I mention he also had CeeDee Lamb added to his arsenal? And do you remember all those years we drafted Aaron Rodgers as the top quarterback? That was with Mike McCarthy as his head coach (Prescott's new coach). If you're on the clock and choosing between Prescott, Kyler Murray, Deshaun Watson, and Russell Wilson, I'm choosing Prescott. There's the least number of variables with him, though Wilson is close. I'll leave you with this: Since Amari Cooper joined the team, Prescott has completed 616-of-916 passes (67.2 percent) for 7,369 yards (8.04 yards per attempt), 44 touchdowns, and 15 interceptions. That's over a span of 25 games. He's also rushed for 346 yards and seven touchdowns.
14 weeks ago
Michael Gallup Note
Michael Gallup photo 60. Michael Gallup WR - (at NYG)
It's funny how I've become someone who's viewed as a "Gallup hater" in some circles. Let it be known that Gallup was one of my favorite receiver prospects in the 2018 draft class. But guys, he's not better than Amari Cooper. It's clear that Gallup benefits from Cooper's presence in the lineup and has fit into his field-stretching role rather nicely. Now, the question becomes: How much does CeeDee Lamb affect Gallup's target share? When Lamb was first drafted, I was concerned, but after sitting down and going through projections, I was still able to find 100-105 targets for him in the offense, which should net him a WR3 finish in fantasy. There are some risks taking him inside the top-30 because you're taking on some of the risk that Lamb doesn't eat into his target share a bit more, though it's a smaller risk knowing we've had a shortened offseason with no preseason action. I have Gallup as a back-end WR3 in fantasy with upside for a bit more if Lamb takes time to develop, which is not out of question. If Cooper missed time, Gallup would be my favorite receiver in the offense and a high-end WR2 start most weeks.
14 weeks ago
CeeDee Lamb Note
CeeDee Lamb photo 100. CeeDee Lamb WR - (at NYG)
When the Cowboys drafted Lamb at No. 17 overall, I wondered if he'd immediately take over Michael Gallup's No. 2 role in the offense, but cooler heads prevailed. Lamb is coming from the Big-12 where the defenses are pretty horrendous, so the learning curve might be bigger than some expect. On top of that, he's going to have zero game experience with no preseason. It seems very likely that Lamb will start out as a slot-heavy receiver, which should help his transition into the faster pace of the NFL, and it's a role that Randall Cobb saw 83 targets in last year. Keep in mind that was Cobb's first year in the offense, so we should see Lamb reach or exceed that number. But temper expectations in fantasy, as he's clearly the third option this year behind Cooper and Gallup. He's someone who belongs in the WR4/5 conversation. If either of Cooper or Gallup were to miss time, Lamb would be a WR3 start with upside for more.
14 weeks ago
Blake Jarwin Note
Blake Jarwin photo 137. Blake Jarwin TE - (at NYG)
Did you know that Jarwin and Jason Witten combined for 124 targets last year? With Witten gone, a lot of targets are up for the taking in Kellen Moore's obviously tight end friendly offense. Over the last two seasons, Jarwin has seen a total of 77 targets, turning them into 58 receptions for 672 yards and six touchdowns. That's 132.2 half PPR points, which would've ranked eight among tight ends. While he may not be as efficient, it's extremely likely that he sees at least 77 targets this season. Think about it... sure, CeeDee Lamb might see more than the 83 targets than Randall Cobb did last year, but not that many more. Even if Jarwin sees just the 83 targets that Witten left behind, he'll be a top-12 tight end in 2020. With where he's going in drafts, it's a no brainer to take him as a late-round upside pick. With all the mouths they have at wide receiver, it's tough to see a top-three ceiling, but hey, we aren't looking for that.
14 weeks ago
Tony Pollard Note
Tony Pollard photo 157. Tony Pollard RB - (at NYG)
We saw flash out of Pollard last year, as he posted three games with 17-plus PPR points, and that was with Ezekiel Elliott on the field. Now a year older, the Cowboys may decide to dial back the veteran's workload, which would provide Pollard with a bigger role. If Elliott were to miss time, Pollard would immediately jump into the RB1 conversation.
14 weeks ago
Greg Zuerlein Note
Greg Zuerlein photo 180. Greg Zuerlein K - (at NYG)
Zuerlein hasn't been close to the fantasy stalwart he once was over the last two seasons, as accuracy issues have plagued him as they did earlier in his career. Now with the Cowboys, Zuerlein should have every opportunity to bounce back on a team that provides its kickers with plenty of field goal opportunities. Once the top few kicking options are gone, Zuerlein should be next off the board (in the last round, obviously).
12 weeks ago
Dallas Cowboys Note
Dallas Cowboys photo 230. Dallas Cowboys DST - (at NYG)
Andy Dalton Note
Andy Dalton photo 404. Andy Dalton QB - (at NYG)
Rico Dowdle Note
Rico Dowdle photo 474. Rico Dowdle RB - (at NYG)
Cedrick Wilson Note
Cedrick Wilson photo 481. Cedrick Wilson WR - (at NYG)
Dalton Schultz Note
Dalton Schultz photo 493. Dalton Schultz TE - (at NYG)
Elijah McGuire Note
Elijah McGuire photo 576. Elijah McGuire RB - (at NYG)