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NFL Week 12: Penny Saved, or Penny Burned?

Normally, this space would be focused on FFPC high stakes, but I was asked to take a more general look at the weekend’s NFL slate, because my own FFPC season is pretty much over and I’m trying to branch out beyond writing about bitterness and regret.

However, we can’t really have a full fantasy football experience without at least a dollop of bitterness and regret, can we? So let’s start at the top: Thursday’s Texans-Colts game, a perfect example of the fantasy football version of Adam Sandler’s line, “Things that could’ve been brought to my attention yesterday!” The assumption: T.Y. Hilton, active for the first time after a three-week absence, would return to a high-volume role in the Colts passing offense.

The reality:

The result: Hilton caught three passes for 18 yards, with a couple brutal drops. I get that coaches play to win and don’t owe anything to fantasy players, but the alternative is having grown adults yelling at the TV, “Why is Hilton on the sidelines? Put him in!” And by “grown adults,” I mean “me.”

Confession time: How many folks pulled up the RotoViz Strength of Schedule Streaming App and saw this for Week 12 quarterback matchups …

… and this for Week 12 WR matchups …

… and started salivating over their shares of Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley? Yeah, me too. The Falcons faced one of the worst passing defenses in the league, and yet Ryan was benched late for ineffectiveness and had his lowest-rated game of the season; no Atlanta receivers notched 100 yards; only one – Ridley – got a TD, from backup Matt Schaub in the game’s meaningless waning minutes; and Jones, who missed some plays with a shoulder injury, continued his scoring drought, having last visited the end zone in Week 3. Who has two thumbs and was yelling a lot at the TV on Sunday?1

But not all my yelling was in agony. Some of it was with glee! Jack Miller identified D.J. Moore, Chris Godwin, Odell Beckham, Jr. and Leonard Fournette as candidates for big games, and all had two TDs but Beckham, who finally grabbed his own score for the first time since Week 2. In fact, it was a good week for positive regression.

And finally, anyone who has read previous FFPC columns knows how fist-shakingly frustrating it has been for those of us who drafted high-upside backup running backs with the hope that any of them could ascend to every-week starter status, only to see almost all of them continue to be stuck behind workhorses who remained healthy and effective.

A guy I drafted on every high-stakes team I was involved with this season — on two Main Event teams, two Super Bracket teams, the Bare Knuckle best ball team and a Terminator team — was Rashaad Penny, who ran for a career-high 129 yards, including a 58-yard score, in Seattle’s win over the Eagles.

If you’re still holding on to Penny after all this time, congrats! As for me, I’ll be channeling Adam Sandler by saying, “This was a performance that might have been a little more useful to me months ago!”

Image Credit: Christopher Mast/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Rashaad Penny.

  1. This guy.  (back)

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