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zftcg

Fast Willie Parker Award nominees (potential Week 17 breakouts)

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The vast majority of us are done with fantasy for the year, and can mostly just sit back and watch football for the real-life stakes. However, the one thing I always have in the back of my mind during Week 17 is Fast Willie Parker. As a rookie in 2004, he barely saw any playing time, but with Bettis sitting out in Week 17, he got the opportunity and put up 19/102 (interestingly, he didn't even start the game; Deuce Staley played most of the first quarter). The following season, one of my league-mates remembered that performance and took a flier on him (I think Bettis and Staley were injured early on) and ended up riding him to a 1,200-yard season. The other famous example of this phenomenon was Arian Foster, although his run started in Week 16, where he ran for 19/97/1 and followed it up with a 20/119/2 in Week 17.

So every year, I try to keep an eye on players who could show us something in Week 17 that foreshadows an increased role the following year. It's hardly foolproof -- for every FWP, there are probably a dozen Joe McKnights, who ran for 32/158 in Week 17 of his rookie year and had just 316 yards over the rest of his career.

I don't know enough about the depths of NFL rosters to project who could seize the mantle this year, but the FWP/Foster template is probably the way it would happen: team with no entrenched starter at RB (or an older one nearing the end of his career). I feel like it's a waste of time trying to project WR performances, because any WR can flash for one game. And teams generally have a plan at QB that isn't going to be impacted by a rookie's Week 17 performance. The one breakout QB performance I can remember is Matt Flynn in 2011, and that led to Seattle wasting a FA contract on him.

Based on my criteria, teams who could be looking to change the guard at RB heading into next year are Washington, Buffalo, Jets, TB, Atlanta (if Freeman can't stay healthy) and Oakland. Of those, the obvious candidate would be Keith Ford in Buffalo; McCoy is apparently on the outs with McDermott, and no one else can stay healthy. Perfect opportunity to see what you have in the rookie.

Other suggestions?

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i signed willie parker for 3 years at league minimum because of that week 17 & then all the training camp hype that was going on. (man, it sure was a different fantasy football landscape back then!)

 

patrick mahomes was this guy last year--he showed he had the goods in his only start.

 

this year, i'd keep an eye on CJ anderson. he's still only 27 and even though he's never been a gamebreaker, he has often been an efficient runner. another strong performance could land him a decent deal somewhere else next year.

 

obviously, i'd keep watching damien williams closely, too. depending on KC's offseason, there's probably gonna be a wide range of opinions on him next year and i'd like to have my own opinion on him at least.

 

ballage, jaylen samuels, rashad penny are other guys to keep watching as well...

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Thats great, been following that tactic for years.  Had Fast Willie Parker way back then as well.  hopefully it plays out again this week.

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2 minutes ago, strong said:

i signed willie parker for 3 years at league minimum because of that week 17 & then all the training camp hype that was going on. (man, it sure was a different fantasy football landscape back then!)

 

patrick mahomes was this guy last year--he showed he had the goods in his only start.

 

this year, i'd keep an eye on CJ anderson. he's still only 27 and even though he's never been a gamebreaker, he has often been an efficient runner. another strong performance could land him a decent deal somewhere else next year.

 

obviously, i'd keep watching damien williams closely, too. depending on KC's offseason, there's probably gonna be a wide range of opinions on him next year and i'd like to have my own opinion on him at least.

 

ballage, jaylen samuels, rashad penny are other guys to keep watching as well...

Thought about mentioning Mahomes, but he was always going to be the starter this year regardless of what he did in Week 17. Also, the key to Week 17 being the breakout is that people are paying far less attention, especially in games where both teams are out of contention.

I also think the rookie aspect is significant. Yeah, maybe CJA or Williams can improve their stock, but they've been in the league a while at this point and we mostly know who they are. 

With that in mind, one other name to keep an eye on is Ronald Jones. I have no idea how he's going to figure into TB's game plan this week, but if he did have a good game, I could see people who wrote him off earlier this year and aren't paying attention anymore overlooking him next year.

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1 hour ago, zftcg said:

With that in mind, one other name to keep an eye on is Ronald Jones. I have no idea how he's going to figure into TB's game plan this week, but if he did have a good game, I could see people who wrote him off earlier this year and aren't paying attention anymore overlooking him next year.

 

i honestly think ronald jones is a lost cause at this point. a lot of people thought he was a turd when they drafted him, he looked like a turd in preseason, and has looked like a turd in the limited action during the year. and in a lost season, it's a pretty bad sign when week 4 of your rookie year is your highest snap %...

 

i mean, if the team turns him loose this weekend feel free to take a look. but it would take quite an impressive performance for me to turn my head and forget what we've already seen.

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A problem with this year is that very few teams are going to be resting their starters. The only two playoff teams with nothing to play for are New Orleans and Dallas. So with that in mind, Dwayne Washington? Probably not. Nor does Mike Gillislee seem a likely candidate. Rod Smith might be a little more likely. 

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1 hour ago, CalBear said:

A problem with this year is that very few teams are going to be resting their starters. The only two playoff teams with nothing to play for are New Orleans and Dallas. So with that in mind, Dwayne Washington? Probably not. Nor does Mike Gillislee seem a likely candidate. Rod Smith might be a little more likely. 

Could also be teams out of contention that give the rookies a shot. It doesn't really matter what NO or Dallas do because no rookie is taking over as RB1. Maybe in NO's case if someone flashes and Ingram leaves via free agency, they might be in line to take over his role? But as a Lions fan, I can say with some certainty that it won't be Dwayne Washington.

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17 minutes ago, packer_junkie said:

Equinimous st Brown is a deep kid gaining steam (out playing the more mid season hyped valdes scantling) lately.

could torch lions and be GBs #2 next season.

Interesting. What would he have to show you this week that would cause you to look differently at him? I guess I've become so cynical about WRs, one good game barely even registers anymore; they need to do it two weeks in a row before I'll take notice.

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Was thinking about something else today: In our current information glut, is a FWP scenario even possible? In addition to his Week 17 performance in '04, Parker got a lot of play in the following preseason, and with the other RB injuries entered Week 1 as the clear starter, at least in the short term. Similarly, I remember watching a Washington pre-season game in 2012 and being impressed by Alfred Morris, who entered the season as the RB1. Yet he still went undrafted the following month, and I only picked him up after he scored twice in Week 1.

If scenarios like that played out today, wouldn't we be all over the FWP/Morris types based on opportunity? Obviously, there are still surprises. None of us saw Lindsay coming this year, but that's kind of my point. That was a scenario that was impossible to predict. But if it is possible, there's a good chance multiple people will predict it.

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22 hours ago, mr roboto said:

Arian Foster. 

Yeah, that's a good one, although technically his breakout was Weeks 16 and 17. I remember I had been so traumatized by the Houston backfield that year (drafted Steve Slaton with my first-round pick and then watched him get benched for fumbling, which it turned out was a consequence of a neck fracture that made it hard for him to have full feeling in his fingers and that eventually ended his career). So the following year, I wanted nothing to do with them. My cousin drafted Foster late and rode him to a title.

Another one -- although I'm pretty sure no one picked up on this at the time -- was Tyler Boyd in Week 17 last year. Boyd had been a hyped but disappointing rookie in '16, then was injured/ineffective most of '17. In the final game he busted out for 5/91/1, including the late miracle TD that put Buffalo in the playoffs. Of course, he remained mostly undrafted this fall, and it was only until a couple weeks into the season that he became a WW darling. But maybe we should have been paying attention last December.

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He won't be a Week 17 breakout, but Chris Warren III is somebody to keep an eye on. Lynch has retired and Richard and Martin aren't much.  

And I saw Morris play in preseason and actually did draft him. He had a really solid year that year.  

D'Onta Foreman is who I had in mind. He might actually seize the job from Miller in Week 17. 

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48 minutes ago, TwinTurbo said:

Does it have to be a running back? I like Robert Foster this week.

I mean, I made up the category, so it can be anything.

The idea is a guy who is otherwise being overlooked whose Week 17 performance might put him on your fantasy radar for next year. In Foster's case, I think he's already going to be targeted based on what he's done the past few weeks. The reason to focus on Week 17 in particular is that it's easier for performances to get overlooked, even by die-hard fantasy owners.

The more I think of it, the more interesting part of the conversation may not be predicting ahead of time who it will be but looking back next week and seeing if our views of anyone have changed.

But mostly, the whole thing is just a way for me as a non-dynasty player to get something useful fantasy-wise out of Week 17 :D

Edited by zftcg

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6 hours ago, zftcg said:

I mean, I made up the category, so it can be anything.

The idea is a guy who is otherwise being overlooked whose Week 17 performance might put him on your fantasy radar for next year. In Foster's case, I think he's already going to be targeted based on what he's done the past few weeks. The reason to focus on Week 17 in particular is that it's easier for performances to get overlooked, even by die-hard fantasy owners.

The more I think of it, the more interesting part of the conversation may not be predicting ahead of time who it will be but looking back next week and seeing if our views of anyone have changed.

But mostly, the whole thing is just a way for me as a non-dynasty player to get something useful fantasy-wise out of Week 17 :D

Ok I am going with Brashad Perriman then. Nobody will pick him this week but he breaks at least one 80yd TD maybe two against his old team to keep them out of the playoffs and becomes a Cleveland Brown legend heading into 2019.

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On 12/26/2018 at 2:54 PM, elkurzhal said:

Maybe Mark Walton for the Bengals.

As a Bengals fan I'd say not likely.  I am sure they badly want to beat the Steelers and knock them out plus they are trying to help Mixon get the AFC Rushing title.  Walton has been okay in his few spots - not spectacular I would say.  I can't even really recommend a receiver - it would be Auden Tate but they are just addicted to playing Cody Core over him (Core seems to be the go-to receiver when the Bengals have their last chance to stay in the game and want to make sure the pass is dropped).

-QG

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Probably too late in the season to resolve the muddle, but sorting out EQStB, MV-S and Kumerow ahead of next year is going to be interesting.  Maybe we get a clue in Week 17?

 

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Figured out who it is, and the fact that no one has mentioned him yet is proof that I'm right.

Three questions:

1. Did you know Bryant Hill ran for 115 yards last week?

2. Do you know which team he plays for?

3. Did you notice I spelled him first name wrong (it's Brian)?

If he had done it in Week 7, he would have been a waiver wire darling. But because it was in a meaningless Week 16 game, crickets.

Plus the opportunity is there for next year. Coleman may be gone, Freeman is a little guy who may not be able to stay healthy. Not saying it will happen for Hill, but it could.

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