Player Stock Ticker
Wolf's Big Board:     Wednesday, June 28, 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  

Fantasy Football Stock Watch: Raiders WR Amari Cooper consistently dominating OTAs as “the dog” comes out of him

Raiders WR Amari Cooper has been putting on a show in OTAs, and though he’s taken over games in the past, Cooper’s teammates feel he’s ready to dominate every single week.

Wolf’s Take

Ah, I love a good Premature EjOTAlation. Nothing like sending players flying up and down the rankings during non-contact practice in shorts and helmets.

Sarcasm aside, plenty of useful notes can emerge. Maybe a player is being utilized in new, creative ways. Perhaps improved habits have someone in the best shape of their career. Maybe a new coach’s scheme is beginning to unfold.

So while caution is advised while sifting through blurbs this early, I always love hearing about a newfound target hog; Amari Cooper, who seems to be trending in this direction. I absolutely love this guy, and have widely-owned him in both of his first two seasons because I am enamored with his natural ability.

Yet, I am equally well-aware of his maddening inconsistency — both in terms of targets and on-field performance. Hell, Rishard Matthews had more double-digit half-ppr games last season, despite only starting nine contests.  Given that he has an actually competent quarterback, Derek Carr has never simply funneled looks to his number one guy; in fact, Michael Crabtree has out-targeted Cooper two straight seasons given the more favorable coverage match-ups he draws. Plus, Cooper himself just seemed burnt out to end two straight seasons.

However, if OTAs are any indication (with a grain of salt, of course), Cooper appears ready to break both trends and stabilize his massive WR1 potential.

According to the Vegas Review Journal, Cooper has been flat-out dominant, winning nearly every route uncontested while making body contorting grabs over d-backs if actually ever covered:

“The first Amari Cooper casualty Tuesday was Sean Smith, as the Raiders’ wide receiver sprinted past the veteran cornerback on a deep Derek Carr pass in stride for a long touchdown…The second Cooper casualty was cornerback David Amerson. This time Carr trusted Cooper to wrangle a pass in traffic during a two-minute drill. Cooper did, high-pointing the football before falling onto the turf for a first down.

“Seeing him do it out here, we were just laughing, man,” Carr said after practice. “The guy has been going off all offseason. We were just laughing about how impressed we are.”

The changes are reportedly both physical, with Cooper adding muscle while maintaining his speed, and, even more importantly, mental:

To the casual observer, Cooper has bulked up his physique since the end of the 2016 campaign. That change is obvious, one that can be measured with a tape measure. There is something else, though, that his quarterback sees in the third-year wide receiver.

It’s mental, and it’s become increasingly obvious in recent weeks.

That dog in him is coming out,” Carr said. “That thing you saw at Alabama where he’d just take games over. Not to say that he hasn’t because he has, but I think it’s not just becoming a thing of, ‘What game is it going to be?’ It’s becoming a thing of, ‘That’s who he is.’ (Defensive backs) better know that he’s really taking it serious, that he’s trying to go attack them this year. He’s not going to let them come to him this year. That just comes with age.”

Of course dominating corners in non-contact practice is never the sole precursor to a dominant season.  Nonetheless, I love players who seem to have undergone a “mental shift,” and Cooper, in letting “the dog” come out, sounds as though he’s practicing (and thrashing dbs) harder than ever before.

Moreover, Cooper’s newfound “attacking” approach appears to be winning over Carr, who may be more willing to chuck it up and let the third year wideout “take games over” the more he performs like this.  The Raiders target pendulum already seemed destined to swing Cooper’s way, but these type of reports all-but confirm this.

All-in-all, Cooper’s inconsistent usage and performance appear set to be neutralized. This improves his “Usage” score, and sends him shooting from my WR14 to WR11.  To maintain this spot, or even ascend further, Cooper will need to keep up this type of performance once the pads come on. I undoubtedly think he will.

Though I’d still prefer Cooper be treated as the highest-end WR2, I’d be comfortable with him as my WR1 if I have two studly backs. He is brimming with upside and makes a fantastic selection in the late second, early third range.

 

We are the ‘Watchers on the RotoWall,’ and indeed, the RotoWorld Blurbs can be dark and full of terrors (re: nonsense on backup right guards and their contract disputes). Instead, bookmark our Fantasy Football Stock Watch, and let us sift through the nonsense to bring you the blurbs that actually matter, with the in-depth analysis we’re known for.  A Fantasy Wolf doesn’t miss a single stock market move, so don’t be a sheep.

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