Fantasy football: Biggest busts so far


Last week’s fantasy football column spotlighted the early-season surprises who may be leading your team to a great start.

Now for the flip side: the disappointments.

Odds are high that at least one of your major players isn’t pulling his weight. If it’s more than one, you’re probably cursing all of them under your breath right now.

But hey, go easy them. Richard Sherman had a valid point that these guys shouldn’t care about how the Golden Tate Warriors — that’s me — fare when they must deal with job security and personal health concerns.

Don’t troll these guys on social media, but here’s a look at the biggest flops through the first four weeks of the season based on average draft position (ADP) in ESPN leagues at the end of August.

Quarterback

The Falcons are playing well at 3-1, but reigning league MVP Matt Ryan’s stats are mediocre. He ranks 21st at the position in points and has not yet posted 18 or more in a week in PPR scoring formats. As the fourth QB off the board on average, Matty Ice is a bust.

Cam Newton (Panthers) went sixth on average, but was a monumental fantasy flop until a flourish in Week 4. Before going for 33 points Sunday, his highest total was 13.1.

Running back

David Johnson (Cardinals) is the obvious choice given his top-two pick status entering 2017, but his dislocated wrist suffered in Week 1 is just one of those random injuries that happens to anyone.

DeMarco Murray (Titans) and Jay Ajayi (Dolphins) are more traditional first-round busts. Murray’s 19-point effort in Week 3 is an outlier from what has otherwise been a 5.8-point average. Two of Ajayi’s three games produced a combined 10.9 points. That they ranked sixth and seventh in ADP at the position adds up to plenty of miffed owners.

Wide receiver

Amari Cooper (Raiders) was excellent in Week 1. Not so much since then for the WR who ranked 11th in ADP at WR. He has three catches for 15 yards the past two weeks, and his QB Derek Carr will miss at least two weeks with an injury. If this hurts your team, rest assured I feel your pain.

A monster Week 3 is all T.Y. Hilton (Colts) has done without QB Andrew Luck. Otherwise, his average of 8.9 points in the other three games won’t cut it for the No. 12 WR in ADP.

Julio Jones (Falcons) hasn’t been awful, but he’s 25th in points at his position despite often being the second WR off the board in drafts.

Tight end

Injuries have struck the Panthers’ Greg Olsen (No. 4 ADP) and the Bengals’ Tyler Eifert (No. 10 ADP), so they burned quite a few people.

The 23rd-best TE from a 2017 production standpoint, Kyle Rudolph (Vikings) was No. 7 in ADP. Hunter Henry (Chargers) was ADP No. 11 and has had two games in which he was not even targeted, contributing zero points. These dudes are duds.

 

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