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Wolf's Big Board:     Tuesday, May 30, 2017     Tier One - The Big Three   1 ) David Johnson (ARI) RB1   2 ) Le'Veon Bell (PIT) RB2   3 ) Ezekiel Elliott (DAL) RB3   Tier Two - High-end WR1 and RB1s   4 ) Antonio Brown (PIT) WR1   5 ) Julio Jones (ATL) WR2   6 ) Mike Evans (TB) WR3   7 ) Odell Beckham JR. (NYG) WR4   8 ) DeMarco Murray (TEN) RB4   9 ) Melvin Gordon (LAC) RB5   10 ) LeSean McCoy (BUF) RB6   11 ) Jay Ajayi (MIA) RB7   12 ) AJ Green (CIN) WR5   13 ) Jordy Nelson (GB) WR6   14 ) Michael Thomas (NO) WR7   15 ) Dez Bryant (DAL) WR8   16 ) Devonta Freeman (ATL) RB8   Tier 3 - Lower-end RB1 and WR1s, elite second options   17 ) Lamar Miller (HOU) RB9   18 ) DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) WR9   19 ) TY Hilton (IND) WR10   20 ) Leonard Fournette (JAX) RB10   21 ) Rob Gronkowski (NE) TE1   22 ) Brandin Cooks (NE) WR11   23 ) Demaryius Thomas. (DEN) WR12   24 ) Jordan Reed (WAS) TE2   25 ) Doug Baldwin (SEA) WR13   26 ) Amari Cooper (OAK) WR14   Tier 3.5   27 ) Todd Gurley (LAR) RB11   28 ) Carlos Hyde (SF) RB12   29 ) Christian McCaffrey (CAR) RB13   30 ) Jordan Howard (CHI) RB14   31 ) Marshawn Lynch (OAK) RB15   32 ) Davante Adams (GB) WR15   33 ) Alshon Jeffery (PHI) WR16   34 ) Isaiah Crowell (CLE) RB16   35 ) Tyreek Hill (KC) WR17   36 ) Keenan Allen (LAC) WR18   37 ) Spencer Ware (KC) RB17   Tier 4 - Elite QBs, Solid #2 RBs + WRs, side TE1s   38 ) Bilal Powell (NYJ) RB18   39 ) Tom Brady (NE) QB1   40 ) Sammy Watkins WR19   41 ) Aaron Rodgers (GB) QB2   42 ) Travis Kielce (KC) TE3   43 ) Terrelle Pryor (WAS) WR20   44 ) Allen Robinson (JAC) WR21   44 ) Mike Gillislee (NE) RB19   45 ) Mark Ingram (NO) RB20   46 ) Golden Tate (DET) WR22   47 ) Jamison Crowder (WAS) WR23   48 ) Greg Olsen (CAR) TE4   48 ) Tevin Coleman (ATL) RB21   49 ) Willie Snead (NO) WR24   50 ) Doug Martin (TB) RB22   51 ) Michael Crabtree (OAK) WR25   52 ) Brandon Marshal (NYG) WR26   53 ) Julian Edelman (NE) WR27   54 ) Donte Moncrief (IND) WR28   55 ) Drew Brees (NO) QB3   56 ) Ameer Abdullah (DET) RB23   57 ) Jimmy Graham (SEA) TE5   58 ) Tyler Eifert (CIN) TE6   59 ) Martavis Bryant (PIT) WR29   Tier 5 - Last Startable WRs and RBs + TE1 Candidates   60 ) Pierre Garcon (SF) WR30   61 ) Eric Decker (NYJ) WR31   62 ) Jarvis Landry (MIA) WR32   63 ) Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) WR33   64 ) Samaje Perine (WAS) RB24   65 ) Joe Mixon (CIN) RB25   66 ) CJ Anderson (DEN) RB26   67 ) Matt Ryan (ATL) QB4   68 ) Stefon Diggs (MIN) WR33   69 ) Emmanuel Sanders (DEN) WR34   70 ) Ty Montgomery (GB) RB27   71 ) Hunter Henry (LAC) TE7   72 ) Corey Davis (TEN) WR35   73 ) Adrian Peterson (NO) RB28   74 ) Kelvin Benjamin (CAR) WR36   75 ) Delanie Walker TE8   76 ) Paul Perkins (NYG) RB29   77 ) CJ Prosise (SEA) RB30   78 ) Eddie Lacy (SEA) RB31   79 ) Dalvin Cook (MIN) RB32   80 ) Theo Riddick (DET) RB33   81 ) Frank Gore (IND) RB34   82 ) Cameron Meredith (CHI) WR38   83 ) Mike Wallace (BAL) WR39   84 ) DeSean Jackson (TB) WR40   85 ) Martellus Bennett (GB) TE9   TIer 7 - side QB1s and Top WR and RB Lottery Tickets   86 ) Andrew Luck (IND) QB5   87 ) Derek Carr (OAK) QB6   88 ) Kirk Cousins (WAS) QB7   89 ) Marcus Mariota (TEN) QB8   90 ) Philip Rivers (LAC) QB9   91 ) Ben Roethlisberger QB10   92 ) Dak Prescott (DAL) QB11   93 ) Jameis Winston (TB) QB12   94 ) Joe Williams (SF) RB35   95 ) Derrick Henry (TEN) RB36   96 ) Kareem Hunt (KC) RB37   97 ) Jamaal Williams (GB) RB38   98 ) Davante Parker (MIA) WR41   99 ) Josh Doctson (WAS) WR42   100 ) Ted Ginn (NO) WR43  
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The Rotos 2016: Fantasy Football Waiver Wire MVP

The Nobel Prize. Academy Awards. Pulitzers, ESPYs, and Golden Globes. While prestigious in their own rights, these honors pale in comparison to The Rotos.  In our first ever Rotos Award Show, the distinguished “Big Dick” prizes will be awarded to players with the most glorious performances in 2016, while the dreaded “Tiny Puds” will disgrace the season’s most dubious players. Grab the popcorn, place your bets, and settle in for a week of recapping the highs and lows from a wild fantasy season. 

The Waiver Wire M.V.P

Any grizzled fantasy guru knows the draft is only one ingredient to a winning fantasy season; successfully navigating the waiver wire is equally, if not more so, important. While countless moves will be made, every season at least one pickup becomes a true season-changer. The Waiver Wire MVP sifts through the worthy candidates to recognize this hidden hero for their unbeatable value and legendary performance.

2016 Nominees

*Note – Stats are collected up to Week 16.

Dak Prescott, Quarterback, Dallas Cowboys – Despite a scorching preseason and a dreamboat combination of dangerous weapons and an impenetrable line, Prescott remained availble in well-over 60% of Yahoo leagues as late as Week 2. He proceeded to finish 6th in FPs among QBs thanks to 3,630 passing yards, an impeccable 23:4 TD-INT ration, and his added leg bonus of 273 yards and 6 scores.  While week-to-week streaming is certainly viable at QB, Prescott developed into a consistent, dependable option, dipping below 18 points only three times while topping 20 in over half his games. Prescott should be the posterboy of waiting on quarterbacks for future drafters.

Jordan Howard, Running Back, Chicago Bears – After a wholly incompetent Jeremy Langford floundered through 2016’s first three weeks, Howard took the backfield reins and never looked back.  From Week 3 on, Howard was one of a select few dependable RBs, dipping below double-digit PPR points just twice; moreover, he mixed in week-swinging 25, 30, 29, and 21 point efforts throughout the season, ultimately finishing as a top-10 PPR back. 1,476 total yards and 7 TDs? Not bad for a guy who went largely undrafted.

Jay Ajayi, Running Back, Miami Dolphins – An abysmal preseason and Arian Foster’s presence kept Ajayi buried on the Waiver Wire. Foster soon suffered his mandatory leg pull, a four-man committee was wholly unsuccessful, and finally head Coach Adam Gase decided to unlock Ajayi’s cage door.  His response? Becoming the fourth back in NFL history to record back-to-back 200 yard games.   A volume back who gets better as he is fed, Ajayi continued feasting until the fantasy playoffs, where 7.3 and 5.1 FP efforts left a sour taste in many owners mouths. Those who survived these poor outings and continued riding Ajayi were soon rewarded, as the monster returned for his third 200+ yard effort and a 28 FP day. At such an injury-depleted, scattershot position, Ajayi proved to be a stable, even explosive, force from Week 6 on, ultimately racking up 1344 total yards and 8 TDs. Ajayi will warrant second round consideration if he enters 2017 as the unquestioned featured back.

Davante Adams, Wide Receiver, Green Bay Packers – Despite scoring three TDs and topping double digit PPR points in three of his first five games, Adams remained unowned in over 80% of Yahoo leagues until Week 7 — perhaps he left that bad of a taste in owners’ mouths after a megabust 2015. Those moved past his previous struggles and saw a healthier, more mature receiver who was quickly becoming Aaron Rodgers’ number two target were handsomely rewarded: a 13 catch, 132 yard, 2 TD explosion. Though he was a bit boom-or-bust, Adams boomed for more often, topping 14 PPR points in 6 of his last 9 games, including three efforts of 20+. He ultimately finished as the WR12 in PPR formats thanks to 69 catches, 966 yards, and 10 TDs, and should be treated as a high upside WR2 for 2017.

Tyreek Hill, Wide Receiver, Kansas City Chiefs – Hill was universally available and a mere fantasy afterthought before Jeremy Maclin went down.  Soon, the football world was treated to one of the games most explosive threats. From Week 7 on, Hill only fell below double-digit PPR points once, and seemed primed to bust a huge play open any time he touched the ball with unparalleled speed. Despite playing on roughly 50% of snaps, Hill was used creatively as a receiver and runner, and he made the most of every single touch, finishing with 800 yards and 9 TDs (almost all in the season’s second half). Hill’s epic stretch run undoubtedly carried countless WR-needy teams through the playoffs, and he’ll be one of 2017’s most tantalizing selections.

Cameron Brate, Tight End, Tampa Bay Buccaneers – After being outscored by only five other tight ends, Brate ultimately panned out huge as our “Next Gary Barnidge.” As predicted, Brate’s red zone presence was heavily felt, as Brate’s eight receiving TDs led all seam-stretchers.  At such an unpredictable position with only six reliable options, Brate’s waiver wire value was tough to match.  Don’t buy into any regression offseason talk — the Harvard product’s chemistry with Jameis Winston is too real, especially in the red zone.

And the award goes to…

Amidst a worthy crowd, Howard’s consistency amidst such a wildly unpredictable position earn him 2016’s Waiver Wire Big Dick trophy.

Acceptance Speech

“Aw man, as a rookie to come in here and earn a Big Dick Roto? Could’ve never imagined this day, man. Truly a blessing, gotta thank my mom for always believing in me. But even more importantly, my boy Jeremy Langford — man, if you didn’t suck I would’ve never gotten this opportunity. So much love for you blowing so hard bro, couldn’t have done it without you.

(Langford begrudgingly smiles and waves as camera pans to him, ultimately pointing at Howard as if to say ‘I gotchu next year’ but the camera’s had enough by then).

Oh, and how can I not thank John Fox. I mean, this guy LOVES hot hands. I mean, really, really loves them. But my hand was too damn scorching to ever let go, and I appreciate that Coach.  You rode me like the true horse I was and didn’t play any of your usual asshole moves.

(Fox awkwardly taps his fingers, as if regretting his choice to avoid a committee) 

Man, I can’t even think of who else — my lineman, Langford’s shit ass again, and the good lord above. Thanks Roto Street Journal for this tremendous honor, I’ll make sure to carry this Big Dick award with pride and do it justice next year.”

Way-too-early 2017 Winner:  RB Branden Oliver, San Diego Chargers