We field thousands of questions each week on Twitter, and we try our damndest to answer them all – just don’t ask lineup questions Tuesday morning or 1 minute before kickoff. Every week in this spot, I’ll highlight a few of the questions that we’ve seen a little more than usual. As always, feel free to follow of our great writers and contributors and ask them your own roster or lineup questions.
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Onto this week’s Trending Topics…
I answer hundreds of question each week on our site Twitter account each week, and Isaiah Crowell’s name seems to come up more than any other name in the early part of the season. It’s not surprising to us since we were much higher on Crowell than most other sites this summer, so we know that many of our subscribers have been enjoying the fruits of Crow’s labor so far this season. His 386 rushing yards puts him behind only Ezekiel Elliott in the league, and he’s currently tied for 8th in FPG (17.0) with Tevin Coleman. Among RBs with 40+ carries, Crowell leads the league with 6.4 yards per carry, crushing the next closet player Devonta Freeman at 5.9.
What makes Crow’s start even more impressive is that he’s getting it done every week with game scripts that are working against him, as the Browns have yet to win and are playing from behind every week. The Browns have trailed on 61.5% of their offensive snaps this season (8th). HC Hue Jackson has hell bent on giving Crowell his 15+ carries every week no matter what the circumstances are, which has been great for Crow’s owners. Still, that isn’t guaranteed to be the case going forward with some tough matchups looming, and it’s clear the Browns will be playing from behind most weeks. I have no problem if you want to keep riding Crow’s hot hand right now. However, if you were fortunate enough to draft Crow late, it’s possible that you are in a very good spot with a couple stud RBs in front of him, so now might be the time to maximize his value in a trade.
@FantasyGuruSite Lat Murray in walking boot. What order would you put these 3 for waiver preference?Powell, Smallwood, DeAndre Washington?— Kris Mann (@krismann12) October 6, 2016
We’ve featured Latavius Murray multiple times in our “Players to Trade” article in the early part of the season, and I hope that you heeded our advice. Murray was an afterthought in the Raiders’ Week 4 win, with just 10 touches in his first game without a TD run. Murray’s opportunities had fallen in every game this year, and for the second time in four games, he had fewer than 10 carries. He was already clearly trending downward, and then ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported this week that Murray is doubtful to play in Week 5 because of a toe injury. Meanwhile, one of our late-round “RB Values” from the preseason, DeAndre Washington, has seen his role grow the first four weeks of the season. And now the Raiders have a legitimate reason to expand Washington’s role even more this week against the Chargers. Washington is a bit undersized at 5’8”, 204 pounds, but he runs bigger than his listed size and is clearly a more dynamic athlete than Murray in all phases of the game. Washington will likely be this week’s starter, with another impressive rookie Jalen Richard mixing in plenty behind him. Washington did have a bad fumble late in last week’s victory, but the Raiders are still very high on the Texas Tech product. He’s in a great spot to succeed in this ever-improving Raiders offense, and this week’s rehearsal as the top back could be the gateway to a big second half of the season.
@FantasyGuruSite PPR League flex question... Tyler eifert or Darren sproles ?— Dom (@DominicGiannini) October 5, 2016
Tyler Eifert was expected to miss the first month of the season after his summer ankle surgery, and it looked like the timetable was going to play out after he was a limited participant in practice before their Thursday night game in Week 4. All signs pointed toward Eifert inching closer to making his 2016 debut this week. However, he suffered a setback this week and is unlikely to go once again in Week 5, but it is a new injury to his back that is slowing him down now. ESPN’s Bob Holtzman reports that Eifert is unlikely to play this week and that the injury is a day-to-day issue. HC Marvin Lewis said Thursday that he hasn’t ruled out Eifert for this weekend, but I can’t imagine the Bengals are even entertaining a scenario in which he plays this weekend. The Bengals have Super Bowl aspirations and Eifert is a huge part of that potential run, so they should take the long view with him and get him back to full strength.
If you’ve waited this long to get fantasy contributions from Eifert, it’s worth it to hold out for one more week to likely get him back for Week 6. The Bengals don’t have much at receiver outside of A.J. Green, and they clearly need him in the middle of the field and in the red zone. The Bengals have run the 8th-most plays in the red-zone this season (53), but they have scored the 2nd-fewest red-zone touchdowns (4). Eifert was the most productive TD scorer at any position last year, averaging a TD per game (13 TDs in 13 games), so he’ll help this sputtering offense in scoring territory. The wait for Eifert to return has been frustrating for his owners, but he could be a huge fantasy difference-maker in the second half of the year if he’s close to 100%.