Josh Jordan

Fantasy football under-the-radar plays — Week 2

Lamar Miller looks like he's a good play again this week. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

The first week is in the books and I have more sleeper plays for Week 2. Let’s take a peek at how I did last week, and then look ahead to this week’s slate of games. My criteria for a good game is around 100 total yards and/or a TD. Last week was a pretty good week considering the uncertainty of Week 1 in fantasy football, and the fact that I’m not picking studs. Here’s how I did in Week 1.

Derrick Henry (TEN): Wrong

James White (NE): Right

James Conner (PIT): Right (Holy Crap)

Lamar Miller (HOU): Right

JuJu Smith Schuster (PIT): Right

Chris Hogan (NE): Wrong

Jamison Crowder (WAS): Wrong

Eric Ebron (DET): Right

Jordan Reed (WAS): Right

Week 2

 

RB

James White (NE): This week, I like James White again. His matchup is not good, but he does have several things working for him. He plays with Tom Brady, Jeremy Hill is out for the year with a torn ACL, and RB Rex Burkhead is dealing with a concussion. White should get a lot of touches against the Jags.

James Conner (PIT): Start him every week until Bell comes back. That is all.

Lamar Miller (HOU): He was pretty good against the Patriots, and he might get even more opportunity against the Titans this week. Hey Bill O'Brien, let's give Miller some goal line opportunities! If the weather turns out to be an issue, Houston may focus on the running game. 

Dion Lewis (TEN): They may lean on Lewis this week with Mariota banged up. Lewis could be deployed against the Texans in a similar fashion as James White and Rex Burkhead were last week. I don’t expect a ton of rushing yards against the Texans stout defense, but he should be active in the passing game.

TJ Yeldon (JAX): If Fournette is out with a hamstring injury, Yeldon becomes a must-start.

WR

JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT): I love his matchup this week. Big Ben is at home and the Chargers WRs had huge games against the Chiefs last week. Roll with JuJu again unless Roethlisberger is unable to go or limited. 

Cooper Kupp (LA): Kupp was active with 9 targets catching 5 of them and also scored in Week 1. He has a nice matchup in the slot where he shouldn’t have to deal with Patrick Peterson, so he’s looking good.

Josh Gordon (CLE): If Gordon is set to start this week, you have to like his chances in the Superdome against the Saints. They were dominated by the Bucs in Week 1, but keep an eye on his hamstring. I’m out on him if he’s not practicing all week.

Mike Williams (LA): Williams is a bit of a dart throw if you’re looking for a flex play this week. He had over 80-yards receiving against the Chiefs, and there’s nothing scary about his matchup against the Bills. Keep in mind, he’s not someone you HAVE to get in your lineup. The negative body clock could be an issue for the Chargers traveling all the way across the country. But if you’re desperate, he’s worth taking a chance on.

Brandon Marshall (SEA): Doug Baldwin is out and Jimmy Graham left in free agency. Somebody has to catch some passes in this offense, so why not Marshall? The Bears gave up quite a few plays to some big-bodied Packers WRs last week, and Marshall is a big dude. He's a low-end flex play.

TE

Jordan Reed (WAS): Reed was good in Week 1, and if you played him, you had to be happy. The Colts are not what you would call GOOD on defense. Give him another shot this week, before he gets hurt again.

Jack Doyle (IND): Doyle caught 7 balls last week, and Andrew Luck is still a little hesitant to push the ball down the field. Washington gives up points to the TE, so fire him up again.

Eric Ebron (IND): He had over 50-yards and a TD against the Bengals, so he’s worth using again. I was on him last week, and I think he’s worth using, especially with all the injuries to the TE position across the NFL in Week 1.

 

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There's nothing left to do, but wait. Composite image by Jack Brame.

For the first time in nearly a quarter-century, Major League Baseball has entered into a lockout in which team officials and players cannot communicate with each other until both sides are “satisfied” and have come to an agreement on labor negotiations.

Before December 1st, MLB free agents were being signed left and right with teams like the Rangers spending over half a billion dollars on players that include Kole Calhoun, Jon Grey, Marcus Semien and Corey Seager.

Other teams that opened their wallets this offseason were the Mariners, Mets and Tigers.

Baseball free agency came to a screeching halt once the December 1st MLB CBA ended. As of right now, players can't sign with any team until the lockout has concluded.

Now that Major League Baseball has entered this work stoppage, the question on everyone’s mind is what does this mean for the sport going forward?

The short answer is no one knows. This process will take some time and most owners have a wait and see approach in regard to this stoppage. Labor negations can be a long, meticulous process that could drag out for weeks, if not months.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred seemed optimistic that a deal should get done between both the owners and the MLB Player’s Association sometime before the 2022 regular season starts.

"We believe that an offseason lockout is the best mechanism to protect the 2022 season," Manfred wrote in a letter to fans. "We hope that the lockout will jumpstart the negotiations and get us to an agreement that will allow the season to start on time. This defensive lockout was necessary because the players' association’s vision for Major League Baseball would threaten the ability of most teams to be competitive."

That being said, it may be some time before any deal is made between either side, thus leaving certain free agents in a temporary limbo like Carlos Correa.

The 27-year-old shortstop looked to be the most coveted player available this offseason and would earn a major payday. Just like his fellow shortstops, Correa was looking to earn a deal similar to that of Manny Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr. and the Francisco Lindor. All of whom signed deals or extension’s of at least 10-year $300 million dollars or higher.

The aforementioned Seager signed a 10-year deal worth $325 million with the Texas Rangers two days before the current CBA ended. Correa was looking to earn a deal similar to this, and the Rangers were one of the team’s that looked to obtain the All-Star shortstop.

Another club that had been linked to Correa was the Tigers, but they just signed free agent short stop Javier Baez to a six-year $140 million contract.

With both Texas and Detroit out of the Correa sweepstakes presumably, where would the 27-year-old land?

We won’t know for some time due to the ongoing lockout negotiations, but as soon as there’s an agreement, Correa will sign somewhere and get his money.

According to Bleacher Report, the Gold Glove winning shortstop has drawn interest from the Chicago Cubs, New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers.

All of these clubs are big market teams who are not afraid to spend large sums of money in free agency.

As much as Astros fans would hate to see their beloved shortstop don Yankee pinstripes or wear Dodgers Blue, it seems to be more of a reality Correa won’t be wearing an Astros uniform next season.

Is it possible for Houston to keep Carlos Correa?

Sure, if James Click and the Astros’ front office do something they have never done before and give him an extension of more than $300 million.

The largest contract Houston has ever given out was a 5-year $151 million extension to Jose Altuve.

If they wish to keep Correa, the Astros would have to give him at least a deal similar to what Seager just received in Texas, therefore doubling their largest contract ever given out.

It is not out of the realm of possibilities to believe Houston could accomplish this feat, but it seems unlikely.

A lockout might prolong Correa’s free agency, but once clubs are able to sign again, the All-Star shortstop could sign quicker than we think.

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