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AFC East Offseason Recap and Power Rankings

by RotoUnderworld and johnsnow, April 16, 2021

Many fans will cite Baltimore’s regression from 2019 to 2020 as the model for what to expect this year from the Bills. That is a lazy take. Buffalo will continue to succeed because unlike the Ravens, they succeeded through the air with an emphasis on Josh Allen’s arm talent, not his rushing ability. The Bills will be the hardest team to beat on Sundays outside of the league’s elite

The chance to improve at quarterback with the NFL Draft’s No. 2 selection places the Jets firmly on the path to relevancy. The notable difference between 2021’s free agent haul and that of previous failed years is the emphasis on upside. Rather than overspending on overhyped names like Le’Veon Bell, C.J. Mosley, and Trumaine Johnson, the Jets targeted undervalued pros and potential breakout stars.

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In the Red Corner: Terrace Marshall, In the Blue Corner: Rondale Moore

by , April 15, 2021

It’s tough to understate the impressive nature of Terrace Marshall’s college production metrics, especially when put in the proper context. His 16.6-percent (23rd-percentile among qualified wide receivers) College Target Share would be much higher had he played more than seven games this past season. We also can’t ignore that 2020 saw him record more targets, receptions, receiving yards, and yards per reception than in 2019, and in five fewer games played.

Rondale Moore’s height is far from ideal. The nature of his physical makeup will make him a supreme outlier if successful at the NFL level. His 9.4 College YPR landing in the 1st-percentile is jarring. But recording upper 90th-percentile marks in 40-yard Dash, Burst Score and Agility Score creates cause for optimism. Those marks help contribute to his 10.13 (72nd-percentile) Catch Radius, which is a freakish mark given his diminutive build.

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The New-Look Bears Backfield Makes David Montgomery an Early-Round Fade

by , April 14, 2021

David Montgomery was fantasy football’s RB6 on a points-per-game basis last season. His glut of opportunity led him to average 100.5 Total Yards per Game and 3.6 (No. 7 among qualified running backs) Receptions per Game, score 10 (No. 10) Total Touchdowns, and produce 11 top-24 weekly finishes, including six consecutive top-eight finishes to end the season. With the signing of Damien Williams, however, Montgomery is a clear fade this year based on ADP in redraft leagues.

From Weeks 1-3 when Tarik Cohen was healthy, David Montgomery was fantasy football’s RB26 on a points-per-game basis. Now enter Damien Williams. Usually, targeting ambiguous backfields creates one of the biggest edges in redraft leagues for fantasy gamers, but in the case of the Bears, not one back will offer stand-alone fantasy value unless an injury occurs.

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Studs and Duds 2020 – Volume 3 – Cam Akers and Preston Williams

by , April 13, 2021

While I’m afraid the hype train will push his average draft position even higher, Cam Akers is currently being drafted at a reasonable 11.8 ADP per Underdog Fantasy. All of the running backs outside the first six or seven have warts. The top-5 potential of Akers paired with the expected usage makes him a prime target at the back end of the first or the top of the second round.

Taking Preston Williams’ first eight games and expecting him to continue that type of production was a fool’s errand. Plenty of factors change year to year; the Dolphins defense drastically improved, Williams was recovering from an ACL injury, and Miami drafted a new quarterback. Looking at the past for future production is inane; situations change for every team every season. 

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Meet the Metric – Pace of Play

by , April 12, 2021

The Cowboys led the NFL with 42.7 Team Pass Plays Per Game and a 2.51 Pace of Play. Before Dak Prescott’s injury, he ranked highly in a number of efficiency metrics with a +18.8 (No. 4 among qualified quarterbacks) Production Premium and 8.0 (No. 6) Adjusted Yards Per Attempt. A -4.77 (No. 27) Game Script mark indicated they often played from behind with their poor defense, which will lead to high passing opportunities once again in 2021 if that unit continues to struggle. 

We have Josh Allen out here exploding in 2020 in all the metrics even though Buffalo ranked lowly with a 2.14 (No. 28) Pace of Play. Buffalo averaged 38.9 (No. 13) Team Pass Plays Per Game, and Allen finished with 4,546 (No. 5) Passing Yards and 37 (No. 5) Passing Touchdowns. With the leap in fantasy production and efficiency paired with his rushing production, expect Allen to dominate again in 2021.

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Transaction Implication: Seattle Seahawks Extend Tyler Lockett

by , April 11, 2021

Tyler Lockett’s cap hit will be higher than any receiver that has signed a contract in the past twelve months. Among all NFL players, he will count more on the 2024 salary cap than Aaron Donald, the DPOY in three of the last four seasons, will for the division-rival Los Angeles Rams. Expect the Seahawks to move on from him after 2023 before he enters his age-32 season.

Can Lockett maintain his efficiency with another high-volume passing game role in 2021? His 75.8-percent (No. 9 among qualified wide receivers) Catch Rate, 93.5-percent (No. 9) True Catch Rate and low 3.8-percent (No. 60) Drop Rate didn’t leave fantasy points on the field. Capitalize on his 2020 season that saw high usage, WR1 productivity, and efficiency unusual for players that see the volume that he received.

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Underworld Rookie Mock Draft Recap #6

by , April 10, 2021

In a 2 QB rookie draft, one would expect it to start QB-QB-QB, and it did from 1.02-1.04. But at the 1.01, our guy Jay Dozier grabbed Najee Harris. After a month of disappointing pro days, Harris was actually one of the big winners after not testing athletically at either Alabama pro day.

With guys like Kellen Mond, Kyle Trask, and Mac Jones getting pushed up boards, it allows players like Jaylen Waddle and Devonta Smith to drop into the early/mid-second round. This is exciting for rookie draft value, which is the key in any draft, and is ultra important in 2021. The late-second to early-third round is the ideal draft position in 2 QB rookie drafts if you are set at the quarterback position.

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Transaction Implication: Sam Darnold Traded To The Panthers

by , April 9, 2021

Despite picking up Sam Darnold’s fifth-year option, Carolina’s commitment to him as the starter may be brusque. It’s no secret that Panthers owner David Tepper covets acquiring a franchise quarterback. If Darnold and his league-worst among qualified quarterbacks -67.40 EPA does not improve in his new destination, expect the Panthers to follow Miami’s lead regarding how they dealt with Josh Rosen, and move on as soon as possible.

With Curtis Samuel vacating 97 (No. 37) Targets and taking into account D.J. Moore’s 757 (No. 8) Unrealized Air Yards, there are opportunities in the Panthers 2021 offense for more production for Moore. His 2.27 (No. 12) Yards Per Route Run, +68.7 (No. 11) EPA, and 28.1-percent (No. 13) Dominator Rating displayed elite efficiency that can translate to a fantasy football bounceback in 2021.

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Underworld Rookie Mock Draft Recap #5

by , April 8, 2021

Without any athletic testing numbers, or even an official height and weight, Devonta Smith is the ultimate black box NFL prospect. But when dealing with a black box prospect who’s also a Heisman Trophy winner, we should be allowed to err on the side of the higher-end Best Comparable Player in the legendary Joe Horn. His Breakout Rating will be helped by his inevitable early round draft selection.

From being undrafted in our first SuperFlex/TE Premium outing to creeping into the fourth round last time and the second round this time, Kellen Mond is slowly working his way up in these mocks. Once the Elite Five signal callers are off the board, the placement of the remaining QBs will largely be determined by draft position/landing spot. The Texas A&M product has a bit of Konami Code appeal to him and can end up being a value by the end of this process.

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