🍿 Free Agency WR MADNESS

How we feeling, Bears fans?

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Greg Dortch is your favorite underrated WR’s favorite underrated WR…

In today’s Fantasy Life Newsletter presented by CTRL:

  • The Bears trade for Keenan Allen, KC and BUF also upgrade at WR

  • Sam Howell to Seattle … and maybe competing for QB1 duties?

  • Free Agent Risers: Fly high, Falcons.

  • It’s 3/15. Take it away, Ian Hartitz…

Three key transactions changed the NFL’s WR landscape in a major way since you got home from work yesterday.

🐻 “You hear that? Bears.” — Keenan Allen

Shoutout to the great Jay Glazer on the scoop.

The move is obviously great news for whoever will wind up starting under center for the Bears next season (AKA Caleb Williams). While Allen will turn 32 in April, the long-time route-running savant is fresh off posting a 108-1,243-7 receiving line in just 13 games while averaging a career-high 95 yards per contest. The man can still ball.

Kudos to the Bears for improving their WR room in a major way, but two major questions immediately come to mind here:

  1. Just how much are Jim Harbaugh and the Chargers planning on running the football? I mean, look at this WR room.

  2. Who is going to wear No. 13 between Keenan and Caleb?

Ultimately, the Bears offense got quite a bit better, and suddenly Justin Herbert has … zero overly proven pass-catchers in his entire offense. Here’s to hoping the Chargers now take a LONG look at adding a certain stud rookie WR to the offense with the fifth overall pick of the 2024 NFL Draft.

🎥 Marquise Brown signs with the Chiefs

It’s a surprisingly cheap one-year deal worth up to $11 million for the artist known as Hollywood.

Sadly, Brown probably could have earned quite a bit more on the open market had he not dealt with such severe hamstring, foot and heel injuries during the last two seasons. Consider: Only Aaron Jones (7) spent more total games on the injury report listed as questionable than Brown (6) in 2023 (per Scott Barrett).

That said: Brown worked as the PPR WR5 during the first six weeks of 2022 the last time that he was truly healthy. We’re talking about a 122-1,374-9 pace here — and the dude looked good while doing it.

It’s not a guarantee that Brown demands an overly dominant target share while sharing an offense with Travis Kelce and Rashee Rice, but good luck being too critical about a landing spot that involves playing with one of the best QBs … ever. Hollywood immediately enters the WR3 conversation alongside guys like Terry McLaurin (WR33 ADP), Calvin Ridley (WR35) and Jordan Addison (WR37).

🥳 Welcome to Buffalo, Curtis Samuel

Samuel is still just 27 years young despite entering the league all the way back in 2017. While the Ohio State product has just one career season with over 1,000 total yards, he’s proven capable of helping an offense in two key ways over the years:

  1. Stretching the field. There's high-end speed here (4.31-second 40-yard dash) inside of a small, albeit not tiny frame (5'11, 196 pounds). Samuel should have had 1,500 yards back in 2019 with competent QB play. He’s caught 25 of 29 deep targets (20-plus yards downfield) that were deemed catchable by PFF over the past five years.

  2. Versatile playmaker. There’s just something about the last name Samuel that apparently enables people to play both WR and RB at a high level. Ironically, only Deebo (6.3) has averaged more yards per carry than Curtis (5.9) among all non-QBs with at least 120 rush attempts since the latter playmaker entered the league back in 2017. Arbitrary cutoff aside: Curtis is a legit playmaker as a rusher.

Samuel isn’t about to walk into Buffalo and take over as Josh Allen’s new No. 1 WR, but the walking swiss army knife is capable of adding a much-needed YAC dimension to a Bills offense whose WRs rank just 29th in yards after the catch per reception over the past three seasons. And guess what: His new OC and old friend knows exactly how to get the most out of him.

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Around the Watercooler (August 2022)

💵 Calvin Ridley got PAID…but what does it mean for fantasy football?

📿 Let’s just say the Falcons are excited about their new QB. Woke up drippin’.

🦁 The Lions are extending their key decision-makers. They earned it!

🤔 Seattle adds to their QB room. And maybe it’s a competition?

👀 Atlanta adds ANOTHER fun piece to their ascending offense. Truthers, stand up.

😮 Rumors are rumoring about a certain stud WR finding his way to the AFC South. You could imagine what it’d be like if he did.

🔥 Most fantasy points per game by an NCAA QB since 2016. Maybe this Jayden Daniels guy is good at football.

💰 Houston is excited to have Joe Mixon in town. Maybe a little too excited?

🧀 The Packers apparently aren’t done adding to their RB room. But why?

📜 It’s time to discuss the next big edge in best ball contests. Scroll the eff down.

ADP Risers

Like the NFL Combine, Free Agency is shaking up the ADP landscape in Underdog drafts. Today, Pete dives into some of the biggest risers and fallers in the Big Board contest and explains whether he’s still buying or not.

Last week we put the rookies under the ADP (average draft position) microscope after the Combine, but this week we have even more to sink our teeth into. 

Monday and Tuesday brought us a flurry of Free Agency moves and the fallout is already being felt in Big Board drafts.

Below, I’ll highlight some of the biggest risers and fallers in drafts and give my take on whether they are still buys or sells at their new prices.

One word of caution: these ADPs were collected only days after the news reached drafters and are likely to change. I would expect the momentum in both directions to continue for the risers and fallers.

In general, if you like the risers, grab them ASAP as their price is likely only going to increase over the coming weeks.

Inversely, if you like the fallers, sit on your hands for a bit until their price settles.

If you’d like to watch me navigate the new ADP landscape, I chase the $200,000 top prize in the Big Board every Monday morning at 10am ET.

ADP Risers

📈 TE Kyle Pitts (ADP: 88 > 73) & WR Drake London (ADP: 37 > 28)

For years, we have collectively begged for better coaching and better QB play in Atlanta. Well, it’s finally arrived. Raheem Morris and McVay protege Zac Robinson, who people forget I've known since preschool, are taking over for Arthur Smith. And now Kirk Cousins is set to replace Desmond Ridder as the QB for our Falcons.

It’s hard to overstate what a massive upgrade this is for both Drake London and Kyle Pitts, who are justifiably screaming up Underdog draft boards.  

Cousins has unlocked massive fantasy performances for pass catchers throughout his career in Minnesota and should pick up right where he left off in Atlanta (provided his rehab progresses smoothly).

London is currently the WR21 on Underdog and I wouldn’t think you were crazy chasing him the way up into the Top 15. For more reasons to love London, check out Chris Allen’s recent piece explaining why he’s due for a massive year.

As for Pitts, he’s up to TE7, but still behind George Kittle and Dalton Kincaid. I still prefer Kittle to him, but would have no problem taking him ahead of Kincaid. He’s a rock-solid TE selection for as long as he remains in this Round 6 and 7 range. 

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