Week 1 Wrap Up
Week one is officially in the books, and it was as crazy as everyone expected.
There were upsets, injuries, surprises, and revelations. The Altbaums and Marinos came in with a chip on their shoulders and forced themselves into the playoff discussion, while Sarlo and Hark came out flat footed with disappointing performances throughout their roster.
Here’s some notable things that happened.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Benched
Don’t get cute.
That is a lesson Galante had to learn the hard way after losing by 20 points with two guys on his bench scoring a combined 25 points more than their replacements. Retrospect is one thing, but it will be interesting to see how much he tinkers with his top players from here on out.
A Legend is Born
We all knew Calhoun’s team would be a force to reckon with this season, but week 1 should be striking fear in the heart of any team looking to win in 2016.
He didn’t even have the highest score, but reading between the lines leaves plenty to be happy about. Freeman was disappointing, which was completely predictable, but in his place Calhoun had two more running backs step up with big games. Week 1 showed variation means nothing is guaranteed, but most teams will need a season-best score this year to even have a chance at beating him.
Chip on their Shoulders
Two big upsets this week were led by the Altbaums and Marino.
Both projected to be the 3rd best in their respective divisions; both beat the projected 2nd best teams; both outscored everyone else in their divisions. In other words throw out everything you thought before because fantasy football is back. Suddenly both divisions are a lot more competitive.
Scrappy Headed Hoes
After all the talk about how Head was going to be bad, he put up the 7th highest score with a team that looks like it could do it weekly. If his rookies are real-deal early breakouts, he could be back in playoff contention as soon as this year.
Lots of movement in Week 1, though some teams may not have moved as much as you’d expect with such a small sample size. Here’s where everyone stacks up after week 1.
12. Brett Poulton + Adam Milsted (0–1) ⇓ 3
I felt obligated to make them last because of Brett being an ND fan. Their team just happens to make it easier for me to do it. They could move back up if Michael Thomas improves more and Rawls comes back.
11. Andrew Bartell (0–1) ⇔ 0
Despite losing and being ranked 11th, Head has to be happy after this weekend. Rookies looked solid and he’s probably just 1–2 pieces from having a team that could make the playoffs. The question is, after accepting a down season, does he make the moves to try and put his young team over the top in 2016?
10. Nic Martino (0–1) ⇑ 2
Some good players that will keep him in most weeks, but spots of the roster just won’t usually do enough. Could improve if a few things fall his way (like Murray going down).
9. John Mealey + Bill Davis (1–0) ⇑ 1
Still lacking depth to really make an impact. Scored less this week than the previous 2 teams, however I think this roster has more potential to keep putting up middling scores.
8. John Galante (0–1) ⇓ 3
Score this week is probably misleading as Deangelo Williams won’t put up 40 points usually — and if he does, he won’t after two more weeks. Could move up if he plays his stars.
7. Nick Sarlo + Mike hark (0–1) ⇓ 3
You shouldn’t panic after week 1, but it has to be hard for a team that was expecting to be good but came out with their lowest post-IDP score in history. Their historical variation means this is probably more of an outlier than an expectation, and they have decent depth to replace unproductive starters, but seeing Watkins injured (again) and Dez underutilized (again) can’t have them feeling great in a suddenly competitive division.
6. Dan Marino (1–0) ⇑ 2
Dan has to be feeling pretty good coming in and sticking it to their trash talking opponent and showing the league they’re still relevant. The lack of heavy hitting stars makes this team unlikely to rise too much higher and I’m not convinced Cooks and Abdullah are going to produce at those levels consistently, but starting the year at 1–0 with a division win and the 2nd highest weekly score makes them an immediate team to watch for come playoff time.
5. Mike Altbaum + Troy Altbaum (1–0) ⇑ 2
I hate putting them this low, but I want to see this type of score again before I am confident moving them ahead of the other teams. They came in bitter and determined to shut everyone up, and that’s just what they did, shamelessly riding Antonio Brown to a victory (despite taking issue with my suggestion they might do that this year). Their team is solid but has a few question marks before they can move up from here (Will Melvin Gordon be more 1st half Melvin or 2nd half Melvin? Will they continue to roll Steve Smith’s wheelchair out weekly?). Another week like this and you can expect them to be a top 3.
4. Dave Falcone + Chris Black (1–0) ⇓ 1
Their fall was less of a reflection of their score and more of the tough spot their roster could be in moving forward. Keenan Allen being out leaves a pretty big hole in a line up that was 100% star studded. They have players who could make up some of that production, but it could be a toss up who’s going to get those points any given week. Also Todd Gurley is on the league’s worst offense (not good for a RB) and Eddie Lacy is still fat (not good for a RB).
3. Dave Hallahan + Scott Lederer (1–0) ⇑ 4
Rise in rankings is a bit misleading since they’ve made a handful of moves since the last ranking. Despite their high week 1 score some of the individual players are cause for hesitation for putting them this high, however I’d have to see another week or so of bad performances from typically reliable guys before I can say more. They should be clear favorites for their division.
2. Cleve Bryan (0–1) ⇔ 0
Some people will be upset about this placement after losing, but their team did exactly what I expected — came out with strong scores across the board. With Gronk coming back, Marshall not likely to put up scores this low again, and hopefully a realization that the Chargers like Woodhead more than Gordon when they actually need to win means this is a dangerous team that shouldn’t be slept on. Good on the Altbaums for winning, but I just don’t see a lot of losses this year for this team.
- Steve Calhoun (1–0) ⇔ 0
I’m probably not alone in hoping (correctly) that Freeman was likely to regress to actual Freeman levels instead of whatever the hell those 10 games were last year, but it looks like for every one disappointing player two more stepped up to have monster games. This team could have a 30+ player weekly and I’d bet will have a few weeks with 2–3. Week 1 has shown that variation is enough for any team to lose any given week (they would have lost to 4 other teams given their scores) and nothing is certain in fantasy, however with a pretty clear path to a playoff bye, this team is a heavy favorite to win it all.