Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: Week Eight, Volume I

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Every week during the season NFL Network and NFL.com Senior Fantasy Analyst Michael Fabiano joins Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hi-lights from our most recent conversation (October 23rd) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

What do you make of the Amari Cooper deal? “My beloved Dallas Cowboys, who once again overpaid for a wide receiver, gave up a first-round pick and I’m seeing flashes of Joey Galloway and Roy Williams going through my head. I mean, maybe give up a second or a third but a first [round-pick]! This guy’s a free agent in 2020 so, the fantasy implications of it, maybe a change of scenery will be good. We’ll see. The Cowboys are predominantly a run-based offense so I don’t know if he’s going to see a ton of targets but he’s clearly going to be their number one wide receiver but I don’t see a huge increase in terms of his value. The trade is probably much to do about nothing at the end of the day in fantasy football because I just don’t see Amari Cooper being significantly better in Dallas.”

What do you make of the job John Brown is doing in Baltimore? “He was a guy in preseason who I talked about as being a potential bargain in drafts and that’s what he’s become. Remember, he was a 1,000-yard receiver in Arizona so it’s not like never been fantasy-relevant, he’s just been dealing with injuries and health issues. Last week he put up 134 yards and a touchdown. The Saints defense is not very good against the pass but still, he put up a very solid stat line. He’s now had 19-plus points in three games this season in PPR leagues. I thought it would be Michael Crabtree who would lead this team in targets but so far John Brown has been the leader in terms of fantasy points.”

Is Latavius Murray worth rostering at this point if available? “He should be off the waiver wire and if he isn’t you need to pick him up. I don’t know what happened to Dalvin Cook. It’s sort of a mystery because remember last week he put in a full practice and then the next day, it was reported he put in a full practice but he didn’t practice at all. Friday he didn’t practice and then he was inactive. I wonder if he had some sort of setback. That concerns me because Dalvin might not be back until Week 11. Latavius Murray does need to be owned in all leagues. He does have a tough matchup this week. The Vikings are going up against the Saints and the Saints have been really good against the run this season so he’s a flex starter for me this weekend.”

If you own one of the two backs in New Orleans (Kamara or Ingram), what’s your strategy with them? “You’re playing them. Last season they were utilized in a similar fashion as they were this past week and they were both Top 10 fantasy running backs last season in PPR leagues. I get it, Kamara’s numbers have dropped but we kind of expected that. He wasn’t going to score 33 points a game like he did over the first four weeks. It just wasn’t going to happen. The volume was going to decrease. That’s why they sort of rested him against the Redskins in that game that people were freaking out that Kamara wasn’t getting enough touches. It’s a split backfield. This is a team that knows how to utilize both of these backs. We saw last season that both of them can be productive in the same games. I wouldn’t be too freaked out about it.”

Is Kareem Hunt now considered an elite fantasy back? “At this point it’s sort of Todd Gurley and everyone else but he’s right in there. He’s clearly a Top 10 back and a lot of people were freaked out after the first week when he had 49 yards and did nothing against the Chargers. Ever since then he’s scored at least one touchdown in every game and he had three last week against Cincinnati. He had one the week before against the Patriots and even had a good game against the Jaguars and their stout defense—even though it hasn’t been so stout lately. But Kareem Hunt has been everything you hoped for and more.”     

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