😬 When Keeping It Real (In OTAs) Goes Wrong

These ADPs are getting a little wild...


OTA highlights count as film analysis, right? Asking for a friend…

In today’s Fantasy Life Newsletter presented by BetMGM:

  • The pitfalls of using OTA highlights

  • Watercooler: Texans’ WR1 secures the bag

  • What Now: Clear the air with CooterDoodle…

  • It's 5/29. Take it away, Chris Allen…

Before I criticize our collective euphoria, I’ll just say that I understand when it comes to watching OTA highlights.

I mean, we’re celebrating getting into the double digits of days left until the opening kickoff. So, seeing a guy on your favorite team make plays without pads against air makes you feel some type of way. Hey, like I said, I understand.

But then I get into the draft lobby.

We’ve gotten so used to seeing some of the newer faces in OTAs (or tired of the older ones from last year), ADPs have shifted in favor of the young guns. But their situations aren’t all as clean-cut as the recent hype suggests.

🐅 Jermaine Burton, Bengals

  • Underdog ADP: 152.1

Again, I’ll start with a positive perspective.

Jermaine Burton got Day 2 capital from Cincinnati and has the athletic profile to give their passing game some of the explosivity from non-Ja’Marr Chase receptions it’s been missing the last couple years. And with Chase and Tee Higgins opting to skip OTAs, most of the highlights of Joe Burrow’s return have naturally been with the rookie.

Combined with the confirmation of Tyler Boyd’s exodus, Burton’s draft cost has gone up a full round since the Bengals picked him. But he’s not the only one vying for a spot in the rotation.

  • Andrei Iosivas (Weeks 12-18): 37.8% (Route Rate), 0.19 (TPRR)

  • Trenton Irwin: 30.4%, 0.12

Once Burrow was done for the season (and injuries kept Chase and Higgins on the sideline), we started to see Iosivas and Irwin more. Luckily, neither was especially efficient with their touches (0.91 and 1.52 YPRR), but have utility as third-down options and were vital as run blockers. With at least one of them already getting some buzz in offseason workouts and the likely integration of the TEs in training camp, Burton’s path to replacing Boyd might not be as direct as we thought it would be.

🤠 Jalen Tolbert, Cowboys

  • Underdog ADP: 202.3

(For my military folks) BLUF: Player development isn’t linear.

So, it’s good to hear about mental or physical progression. Jalen Tolbert could use a bit of both after amassing less than 300 yards in his first two seasons. Regardless, Brandin Cooks recently praised the third-year WR and noted how much Tolbert has been working with Dak Prescott on route concepts.

Of course, I can already hear the pushback to my (semi) skepticism.

But where else are the targets in Dallas supposed to go?

Honestly, I understand the question. But it’s the opposite of the question we usually ask of any WR we draft: should the targets go to them?

Per TruMedia, Tolbert got in a cardio workout (aka ran a route) 272 times throughout the ‘23 season and earned 36 targets for his troubles. For reference, Cedrick Wilson had fewer routes (268) and still saw more passes thrown his way (38).

And for the 'Michael-Gallup-is-gone-so-that-helps-Tolbert’ crowd, Dallas’ X-receiver got one or zero looks from Prescott in four of his last seven games as a Cowboy. Tolbert, a flanker/slot WR, didn’t benefit much from Gallup’s smaller role.

  • Week 12: 9.4% (target share)

  • Week 13: 2.5%

  • Week 15: 0.0%

  • Week 17: 2.7%

Admittedly, there are worse ways to spend a 17th or 18th-round pick. I’ve advocated for at least a couple. But I’ll need a louder drumbeat before I start listening to the Tolbert hype.


🚨 Frozen Playoff Duel

Will McDavid lead the charge or will Dallas' stars shine bright?

Get ready for a playoff thriller with BetMGM as the Edmonton Oilers go head-to-head against the Dallas Stars! Can the Oilers square the series or will the Stars dim their hopes! Don't just watch the game - get in on the action with BetMGM!

Not into hockey? No sweat! BetMGM's got your back with a diverse range of sports to bet on!

BetMGM is offering new users up to $1500 in Bonus Bets if your first bet doesn't hit!

That's right, place your first bet and BetMGM will pay you back in bonus bets up to $1,500 if your first bet doesn't win!

Sign up for BetMGM today!

🤔 A highly improved offense with dirt-cheap ADPs? Sign us up.

💰 Nico Collins agrees to a three-year extension. One of the best in the league.

🇺🇸 A new QB enters the picture, but will he start Week 1? Patriots fantasy football outlook for 2024.

🥴 NFLPA looking to end OTAs and extend mandatory training camp. Bold move, Cotton.

👀 Bills WR1 working out with Dallas’ WR1. Love to see it.

🚂 The hype train for Rashod Bateman gains speed. Better hop on!

🔥 Kyler Murray playing with his Maserati. They’re going to be a problem.

🥁 Jaguars’ OC raving about their new WR. He’ll be climbing up draft boards soon.

🐕 New single-entry tournament on Underdog announced. Let’s draft!

Clear the Air

It may still be the offseason, but we're always plugged in. Cooterdoodle is here to keep our minds in check by asking the age-old, evergreen question: “What Now?”

😥 What Now? Clear The Air

No one wants to go into a new fantasy season without a fresh start. And sometimes, there's still pain lingering in the air. 

So let's practice a little humility. Whether you were wronged by your league mates or you were the one committing the wrong doings… It's time. Let's clear the air.

💪 A Winner's Apology

The heaviest air to clear is that of a f*cking champion. 

Whether they've been vocal about it or not, your league mates are still bitter about the way things played out last season. Deep down, they still think it should've been them walking away with the trophy. 

I'm not saying they're right, but throw those poor kids a bone, will ya? Apologize.

"I wish I had tougher competition. I really do. Deciding how to spend all of your money has been really hard on me." Sometimes, you're just cursed with being the best that there is. And for that, you're sorry. 

See… it feels good to clear the air, doesn't it?

💌 Forgive Yourself

Another way to clear the air is learning to forgive yourself. Here's your chance to let go of any regrets that are still hanging around from last year.

🚫 Not Making The Trade

Trades are TRICKY. You're still kicking yourself over the bad decisions you made last year, aren't you?

You over-negotiated or didn't negotiate at all. It happens. We've all been there. And whichever route you took, it was always the wrong one, wasn't it?

But trades come and go. You'll have plenty of time to negotiate next season. Forgive yourself and start with a clean slate this go round.

💸 FAABulous Mistakes

Soooo you held too tightly onto your pretend money and let the 2023-Waiver-Wire-Darling, Puka Nacua, get away. OUCH. Now, you're throwing shade in the group chat. 

But blaming your mistakes on the league's FAAB rules isn't the move. We can't abolish FAAB just because you were scared to spend it. Or maybe you blew it all in Week 3... Either way, the same rules apply. 

You can't blame FAAB just because you are bad with your spending habits. 

So, remember: You can't take it with you. Spend it while you've got it… Or save it. I'm not sure what you need to hear. Just forgive yourself, okay?

🤕 Tough Schedules & Tough Luck

Dude. We get it. You scored the most "Points For" last season, but you didn't make the playoffs because you played against some tough matchups. Luck wasn't in your corner.

AND DUDE. WE GET IT. You rostered the highest number of injured players. It happens. Things could have gone differently, but they didn't.

But you need to forgive yourself for the hurdles you faced. 

And congratulate the winner, if you still haven't. No one wants any stale grudges lingering around. Clear the air. Please.

Cooterdoodle's Favorite Tweets (Aug 2022)