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High Staked: That Sinking Thielen

Veteran high stakes fantasy football player Monty Phan chronicles his season.

Observations from Week 9 in FFPC high-stakes leagues:

  • Kirk Cousins continues to be one of the hottest quarterbacks since Week 5, having thrown for at least three touchdowns in four of his past five games, including on Sunday. So it’s absolutely maddening to see lines like these from his top wide receivers:


The Adam Thielen line is particularly hurtful, because we started him, only to see the worst possible outcome occur: a reinjury of his hamstring early in the game, before he had recorded any stats. It was reminiscent of the David Johnson two-plays-and-done “performance” from a couple weeks ago, except that there was no equivalent of Chase Edmonds to soak up the points.

As for Stefon Diggs, if all you’d known about the Vikings game was that Cousins had thrown for 220 yards and three TDs, you’d be rubbing your hands together in anticipation of what was sure to be yet another stellar stat line, only to see … whatever that is above. There were 10 different Vikings who got at least one target, and no one caught more than four passes. Two of Cousins’ TD passes went to Bisi Johnson and — please sit down if you don’t already know this — Ameer Abdullah.

  • Here’s an interesting stat: Jets tight end Chris Herndon was drafted in every FFPC Main Event league, yet he has been dropped in only five. The Jets have played eight games, and Herndon has yet to see the field in any of them. Yes, he was suspended for the first four games, which only solidifies my point: He shouldn’t have been on your team to begin with.

I can only imagine the players that many teams decided against bidding on because they were holding on to Herndon. At least someone like Golden Tate, who was also suspended for the first four games, has been relatively productive, but his first good game wasn’t until Week 6. And don’t get me started on Kareem Hunt, who also was drafted in every league yet dropped in very few. Meanwhile, Chubb has a stranglehold on the backfield, Dontrell Hilliard seems to have a handle on change-of-pace duties, and the Browns are a 2-6 mess of a team that’s been a shambles on offense. So how much value could Hunt possibly have?

  • Another reason it might be worth dropping Herndon: Ryan Griffin could be a thing. After grabbing two TDs on four receptions a week ago, he followed it up with six catches this week and narrowly missed another score that was overturned on review.

In fact, Week 9 was yet another in the topsy-turvy world of TE scoring, where second-round pick Zach Ertz finally made an appearance atop the TE leaderboard for the first time all season. He was unpredictably followed by the likes of Broncos rookie Noah Fant, who had a career-best game while catching passes from first-time starter Brandon Allen; Seahawks next-man-up-at-TE Jacob Hollister, who snagged two TDs from Russell Wilson; Mike Gesicki, who notched a career-high 95 yards on six catches; and Nick “Not Mark Andrews” Boyle, who recorded five catches and a TD.

I’m looking forward to seeing teams blow their remaining free-agent bidding budgets on any of those guys still left on waiver wires. At this point, why not?

Image Credit: Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Adam Thielen.

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