If you look hard enough, there are plenty of parallels between real life and fantasy. Maybe this is another.
Have you ever seen those stories about one person winning multiple lotteries? All of them are sudden cash windfalls, they usually happen to someone who isn't famous, and all of them happen unexpectedly. It's next to impossible to win even one lottery, but winning two defies astronomical odds. So when you're sitting around with grandkids on your laps in a few years, we can tell them we experienced two historic consecutive weeks from a fantasy perspective.
In Week 8, Calvin Johnson (329 yards, 1 TD, 36.90 fantasy pts) and Marvin Jones (122 yds, 4 TDs, 36.20 fantasy pts) both had explosive performances. It's pretty rare to see one performance like that, let alone two in one week. But we did. And had someone told me last Monday that Week 9 would feature an even better pair of headlining acts, I'd have scoffed. However, as the old saying goes ... the only certainty is uncertainty (well, that ... and Darren McFadden getting injured, my poor Browns never winning the Super Bowl and Jason Smith consistently entertaining the entire newsroom each week with his Jets rooting antics).
Anyhow, one week after those two big performances, we saw something even better: Nick Foles tying the single-game NFL record with seven touchdown passes (in a mere three quarters of play to boot) and scoring 45.64 fantasy points in the process, which was easily the best performance among QBs this week and almost this season (Peyton Manning's 7-TD explosion in the season opener against Baltimore netted him 46.28 pts). No one expected this to happen since Foles was owned in a scant 7.5% of leagues. Then Andre Johnson, whose owners had become more and more frustrated as the season dragged on, went absolutely wild against the Colts yesterday with a three-TD, 229-yard performance. Believe it or not, those were Johnson's first touchdowns of the season. A.J. was owned in just under 99% of NFL leagues, but a fair amount of his owners had begun benching him since his best days seemed to be behind him.
So, two straight weeks of multiple ultra-explosive performances. My biggest takeaway from all this? It seems more oftent han not, players like Foles and Jones do this unexpectedly. Check out which positions are having these big games -- either QB or WR. I can't emphasize enough that the NFL has become a passing league, and running backs are not nearly as critical to fantasy success as they once were. If you feel like you're Tom Hanks because your fantasy title hopes for this season are already floating farther and farther away from you like Wilson in Castaway, then pay close attention and file this away in the back of your domes for your 2014 drafts. Since we're at the halfway point of the season, let's take a guess as to what a mock draft would look like if it were held today for the rest of this season (and possibly may look like next year):
That look about right to you? It does to me.
Only three RBs in the first round. Three! Think back to how radically different this looks when compared to your actual drafts. I think next year's drafting landscape will look very different than it has in recent years. If you disagree, let me know down below.