Hello to all and welcome to the latest ESPN Fantasy chat session. I am Eric, glad to be here, thanks so much for showing up live or reading the wrap later. I'm overwhelmed by the support for my work and our site! It's baseball and football season now, so let's get going and get to as many questions as we can in an hour... go!
If Calvin Johnson goes off the board, would u take a different receiver in the first round for a PPR league?
Perhaps A.J. Green, but most likely I'd go RB anyway. One that catches passes, like Forte, even Chris Johnson or Sproles.
If not in need of steals, does Eric Young provide any value?
8 teamer - if I get Spiller in the first round, does it make more sense to take Dez in round 2 or grab TRich or McCoy?
I'd still take a running back, probably McCoy. I like McCoy a lot.
how scared should we all really be for fantasy with aaron rodgers? he lost his o-line protection and has both his top WRs hurt in Jordy and now Cobb...so...how scairt?
I think I'd take Brees over Rodgers, but it's irrelevant since I'm not taking a QB in the first 5 rounds anyway. I'm honestly not too worried about Rodgers, or Tom Brady. They make their own weapons, really.
Is it time to cut Colon after two terrible outings?
I wouldn't argue if it's a shallow league and there are good options available. But he could easily turn in a gem his next start.
Good morning EK, are you concerned at all about Matt Harvey fizzling a bit. I realize he is on an innings limit, but it also looks like he is tiring. Thoughts?
I don't think he's tiring because the Dodgers, a team that has played .800 ball for 50 games, hit him. It happens. But I would be surprised if Harvey is pitching in late-September. Still awesome.
Do you think Antonio Gates will have a bounce back year or do you think he is on the decline now?
He's been on the decline for a while, actually. Not a top 10 tight end and little reason to expect he bounces back.
Colon finally fell back down to earth it seems.
Yeah, did ya feel it?
How well will Larry Fitzgerald bounce back this season?
Carson Palmer is such a huge upgrade for Cardinals and Fitz, I've got Fitz in my top 10. He'll be terrific.
Who would you rather own ROS between Will Venable and Leonys Martin?
Martin, more upside, can hit for average. Venable is hot of late but still makes a lot of outs!
Would you take you chances with Lester vs. the Blue Jays today?
I sure would.
How worried are you about Foster's injuries?
Not worried. It's mid-August. No reason to expect Arian Foster's injuries carry over. But I have been drafting Ben Tate in round 10 in a few leagues, whether I own Foster or not.
Do you think Wilin Rosario's .280+ average is ligit with power slightly down. Is he a good keeper with catcher being so shallow?
I think the average is a bit high, but I also don't think catcher is so shallow. Like QB in football, in most leagues you need only 10, and there are more than 10 QBs. There are more than 10 ownable catchers as well.
I know you've mentioned that you have ended up with Jared Cook on a lot of your teams, but whats another deep name that could be a sleeper from TE? Gresham? anyone else?
I don't see Gresham ending up the best tight end on his own team necessarily. Certainly Tyler Eifert will get chances. I like Brandon Myers and Martellus Bennett late as well.
EK! Football season is right around the corner! Keeper choices due tomorrow and I have a tough one. Definitely keeping Spiller as a 5th round pick, but what's your recommendation on the last two (.5ppr): Sproles (round 10), Cruz (11), Kaepernick (12), Gronk (13). Thanks!
I'd keep Sproles and Cruz and draft a QB and TE, personally!
Thoughts on Samardzija? Would your rather have him or Beachy, or Sonny Gray ROS?
Samardzija is prob hurt and not sharing the info. Just doesn't look good. Watched him close his last outing, it went poorly. I'd take Beachy now. Atlanta with such an easy schedule the rest of the way. Could win 100 games. NL East stinks after the Braves.
EK! My draft is this weekend. Please pick 2 WR in a 0.5 PPR: Reggie Wayne, Amendola, Cecil Shorts. Thank you good sir!
In that format you take the chance on Danny's health and take him and Wayne. But I haven't been taking Danny in standard leagues.
IS 4 too high for CJ Spiller in a non-PPR if AP, Foster, Martin are off the board? Wheatley said back in of season that we will see a 50/50 split with Jackson but when I saw Jackson on Sunday he look fried.
I personally would not take Spiller fourth, but it's hardly outrageous. He's good. And I do not think it's a 50-50 split, or close, but then again Jackson is good when healthy. I'd go Rice or Lynch over Spiller.
who is GB's #1 WR this season? Projected yards/TD's for Jordy/Cobb/JJ?
Cobb's going for 100 catches and 1,200 yards, perhaps 7 TDs. He's really good. Nelson is really hurt. I have concerns about his September. I've moved Jones up my draft boards... just chose him in sixth round in the #TwitterMockDraft. Check it out on Twitter!
Thanks for answering my question! You're the best. I'm gonna go with your recommendation and stop stressing out. Thanks!!!
It's just fantasy, it's supposed to be fun! No stress! Smile!
Fred Jackson? You mean the 32 year-old Fred Jackson? How many RBs have been productive at age 32?
I don't think he'll be productive. I don't think the Bills should use him instead of Spiller. But I'm not the coach!
In an NL only league, choose one of the following to carry as the last guy on the bench- Ludwick, Eaton or Ike Davis. Thanks.
Ugh. Prob Ludwick, because Eaton isn't running at all and Ike isn't hitting at all.
Would you rather have Dane de la Rosa, Chia Jen Lo, or Latroy Hawkins for saves ROS?
Incredibly,and sadly, Hawkins. I don't think Parnell returns soon.
All im hearing is RB for first and second picks, why no Calvin in the first round?
He's awesome. Really awesome. But it's supply vs. demand. There are no running backs after about 12 guys so if you take a WR in the first round you might end up having to start someone like Vick Ballard all year at RB. And that's not good.
If Charles is fine by the start if the season, what pick is where you say okay that's too high? 3? 4?
He's sixth for me right now. But I wouldn't argue if healthy for him at 3. I just wouldn't take him over Rice or Lynch or Martin or Foster.
Im thinking of taking McCoy at number 6. I am wondering why he isn't ranked higher on espn rankings. I think he is perfect for Chip Kellys offense. Is it the injuries from last year that hurt his ranking?
People think he won't score TDs. People think Bryce Brown will steal many carries. I tend to agree he'll be terrific, and rank him 7th, which seems higher than my colleagues. Time will tell.
Who's the lowest ranked RB that you would draft in the third round if you went RB/RB in the first two?
Depends on what WRs are out there, but I'd say I'd be OK with Wilson, Sproles, Bush, Ball there...
Would you ever consider taking Calvin Johnson picks 1-5?
In standard scoring, no. But that's not because he's not awesome. Calvin and a 5th round RB vs. McCoy and a 5th round WR. I take the McCoy side.
Why pick running backs first, over quarterback? Quarterbacks are projected to score more points over all then running back.
Oh my. Because you can wait at QB. Sam Bradford might outscore every RB. It's not an apples to apples argument. You can play 3 RBs, 1 QB. If you don't get good RBs, you'll be unhappy.
Thoughts on having BJGE as a RB2?
I'm not a big fan of it, because I think Gio Bernard is better and the Bengals will notice that really soon, if they already haven't!
What's your take on Colorado's closer situation?
I think they'd like Betancourt to take over closing duties next week, an outing or two after he comes off the DL. Brothers has been fine, but most managers give the job back to the old closer.
I know you don't want to deal with Gronk's injury history, but would you grab him if he's there in the 6th round? Shady fell to me in the 2nd round (at 2.6)!
There's major upside on Gronk, and I felt comfortable with my RBs and WRs sure, I would take him. I just haven't been comfortable or someone else always takes him earlier. He's not playing 16 games. Doesn't have to do so to be elite, but there's also some risk he misses considerable time. I don't want to roster a second tight end.
I need some speed. Greasy, fast speed. Who do you like more ROS: Villar or Young Jr.?
Villar is a stolen base monster. Just needs to get on base.
Minor, Teheran, Archer, and Salazar. Which three should I keep next year?
First three. We still don't know what Salazar is. He's gotta make more starts!
Follow up if you see my earlier question, I could possibly move Brady for T-Rich in a 6pt passing TD PPR 2 keeper league...should I?
Would you start Alex Cobb in his first start back or would you use a wait and see approach if you had the luxury to do so?
If you have the luxury then yes, I would try to wait an outing or two on him.
Hey EK, love all your analysis! Who do you like ROS out of LaRoche, Smoak, or Ike Davis? Thanks!
Thanks! LaRoche. Steady. Little downside.
Seems like everyone has forgotten about Greg Jennings. What do you expect from him on his new team? I got him as my 3rd WR in the 7th round.
I don't think people forget, but there's a really, really, really big difference between Aaron Rodgers and Christian Ponder. Oh, and the Vikings have a decent RB.
Is it safe to start trusting Haren again? His last 3 starts look promising... (QS/WHIP league btw)
Yeah, I am trusting him again. Different pitcher now. I guess he was having back problems, now he isn't and that's why he's striking out 6 guys every outing now. Different guy.
Crazy to take Martin at no. 2 in a PPR?
Take him first if you like. Honestly, case can easily be made in PPR.
Are you so bullish on the Cardinals pasing offense that you would recommend Michael Floyd as a later round WR with upside? That OL is not great...
I think Palmer might throw 20 interceptions, so it's not that I think he'll be great, but 4,000 yards, yes. And yes on Floyd late. Thing is Andre Roberts, who actually outscored Fitzgerald in fantasy last year, is a factor as well.
Would you move Braun and Stanton for C Davis and Pedroia? I'm in a position to really go for it this year but it's a keeper league. I don't want to mortgage the future...
That seems like mortgaging a bit, but flags fly forever. Win now, worry about next year later. Crazy things happen. Yeah, I'd probably do that.
Which Rams RB do you like in dynasty leagues?
I think Richardson will be really good and by November nobody will remember who Isaiah Pead is. But we'll see.
How does DeAngelo Williams fair this year?
I'd say "fair" is the proper word. Just no reason to think anything changes there.
Ni hao and greetings from Shanghai Eric! Everth Cabrera and Nick Franklin were just dropped in my league. With both of them holding last round keeper status, is either worth stashing if I have the room?
Yeah, each is worth stashing for next year. Franklin has upside for power, making him interesting, but he won't steal 50 like Cabrera. I'd keep Franklin, actually.
Big fan of him bouncing back. I really think he's fine, and let's remember how good he was. But most people just think he's washed up. I do not.
so you don't think the injury to J-Stew gets DeAngelo more stats?
I think Carolina finds a way to keep Williams' carries in check. They always seem to. And Stewart isn't out forever!
Buying that Morris is going to catch a bunch of passes this year? If so, does it change your ranking of him?
Alfred? Well, it's possible, but I bet Roy Helu catches the pass from the backfield. Yes, if I believed Morris would catch passes I'd have him over McCoy. But I do not.
Reggie Bush: 1,000 yds this year?
Absolutely. Rushing. And then he catches 70 passes, too.
What's up with Giancarlo? Is he hurt? He is just hideous lately.
He just looks resigned to his team's mediocrity. Surprised that happened to him.
EK - news out of Miami isn't too good concerning Mike Wallace. Would you still consider him a WR2?
Why isn't it good? I think he's a borderline WR2.
I've been of the opinion that the best fantasy football pick this year is whoever gets Marshawn Lynch...if I can get him at 5 or 6, that really sets up the rest of my draft well...like MJD, then Randall Cobb, then Tom Brady, amirite?
Seems reasonable to me. But some older risk with those RBs.
Eric any word when Wheeler and J.Fernandez will be shut down? Thanks
No. And frankly, this topic is so annoying because every other day comes word from Mets writers/reporters that this guy will be shut down, then he won't, then he will. Nobody knows. The TEAMS do not really know, they play it start to start. Own the studs now, worry about a new pitcher in mid-September.
Should I trade Carlos Gonzalez for the other CarGo- Carlos Gomez- in a keeper league if I'm going for championship this year? The injuries to the first CarGo are scaring me a bit
Gomez really hasn't been a stud the past month. I want Gonzalez instead.
Will Bruce Chen keep his pace up?
Bruce Chen is still pitching? (And no)
On Wallace: No chemistry with QB (not sure what that means)- coaching staff unimpressed. Tannehill is improving, but a lot of sites (including ESPN) have Wallace as a bust candidate.
Well, I disagree. Chemistry? Get open deep, QB finds you, chemistry happens. It's mid-August and people love to overreact and make things up. Wallace is talented, Tannehill will break out, so will Lamar Miller. And I really doubt any coach would say they are unimpressed about a player that makes that much money.
Outlook on Tony G this year? Still a beast for TE, he is old .
His 2012 stats again in 2013. Has been doubted every year since the JFK administration. He's terrific.
At what point do you move Arian Foster from your 2nd overall pick?
Perhaps in 2 weeks if I think he's still hurting. Guy is a touchdown monster.
re: Wallace, I think he'll pretty quickly realize how much he took Big Ben for granted
I think Tannehill has a bright future.
Is Prince Fielder a buy-low keeper target or would you just stay away? Torii Hunter hinted at some potential problems in Prince's personal life (Try saying that five times fast!!). Thoughts?
I'd trade Prince if the price was right, but I'm not looking to sell. If anything the fact Hunter said that - and he should not have - could get Prince going. It's a long season, these guys get into bad habits. Maybe now Prince sees that and changes approach.
What are you doing with pick 12 of a 12 team ppr league? RB, RB?
I sure am. If Forte is there...
Stafford huge year... is it true? Does he have enough options at WR? (Besides CALVIN)
Stafford will be fine. Throws more than anybody, and had some bad luck near the goal line last year. And they have enough options. Broyles will be a nice sleeper there.
Jedd has been raking in San Diego. Where do you rank him among 2B ROS?
Well, he hasn't been raking, but has homers the past few days. Borderline top 10.
RE: Gronk, Does your opinion on rostering that 2nd TE with Gronk change where you can Flex a TE? Im thinking Gronk in RD 5 is better than alot of the WR there that are other flex options.
Well, can't all leagues use a TE at flex now? I don't think it changes much. Depends what WRs are available, but I still want a player that I think will play every week.
odds of a Miguel Sano September appearance increase if Morneau moved?
I think we see him for a few AB regardless. Sano isn't playing first base. But I wouldn't rush to get Sano in a 10-teamer non-keeper.
Fowler or Bourn ROS?
Fowler is the guy. Bourn isn't running enough.
Compared to 2012 - will Ray Rice have a better year, worse year, or the same (fantasy-wise)? Do you believe he'll see some snaps at WR?
I think reports of Rice losing many touches to Pierce are foolish... same year. And the Ravens have WRs.
Football Football Football... do the Sox call up Bogaerts at all this year?
Yes, in September. Topic of my blog today. But Drew and Middlebrooks are gonna be fine.
I have been flip flopping on the idea of trading Aaron Rodgers for Arian Foster for like months now! would you rather start with A-Rod, T-Rich & Spiller or Arian, T-Rich
I'd take Foster for Rodgers. But that first scenario is attractive as well with Spiller. More so, really.
Who's more likely to break out and finish the season a top 10 RB this year? Wilson, Miller or Bell?
People think Wilson is overrated. I see upside. Wouldn't surprise me if all were top-10. I'd still take Wilson.
Really would like your input on Ahmad Bradshaw... would mean a lot, not too sure how to judge him on this coming year.
Starts when healthy, but we'll never know when he's hurt. But he catches passes, too. I don't think he's a top 20 RB, but close. Not a bad flex.
How good are The Answer Guys?
They really know their stuff. I definitely recommend. Only so many questions we can get to in the chats!
Projections on Forte/ Bush? Think Bush is getting all the GL carries?
I think Michael Bush gets most of them. Forte not a good track record inside the 5.
Who's the bigger reach at pick 15 in a PPR .... Dez, Ridley or Forte?
Ridley is not a top-15 guy in PPR. Not even close.
First time in an IDP league (1 roster spot, can be any position on defense). What round should I start thinking about drafting the IDP?
Still late. After round 12 for sure. Many options worthy of being a starter in IDP.
When will your next chat be?
Every Wednesday at 11 am ET. But we have many chats during the week with my colleagues, and they're all very good at this.
You asnwered so many of my questions today, ive been changing the names so you would pick them... I appreciate it
I never look at who is asking... just trying to answer many!
On a Twitter post, you said that Garcon could end up with huge numbers. If he stays healthy, what do you project?
Yeah, people think I'm not a fan of his, but it's just about health. Plus, I don't think his QB plays all 16. But upside for 90-1,200-10. I just can't pick that as realistic.
Question I thought I'd never ask. Castro or Villar?
Never thought I'd consider Villar, but if you need steals, do it. Sad.
Who do you like in the 4th round over dmac or Murray? I don't want the injury risk..
I won't be choosing those fellows. I would even take the rookies Bell and Ball over them. Says a lot. Look, McFadden and Murray are so talented, but health is a skill and I think they have proven they lack that skill. If you feel lucky, take 'em!
Do you think Fitz, Bowe and VJax can all be top 10 this year?
Fitz has the best chance to do so. I think he will.
Middlebrooks or Reddick more likely to keep up their recent success?
I say Middlebrooks. Tough to ask a guy to keep hitting for power like that, especially when he whiffs so much. Middlebrooks seems better the past few days, and he is talented.
Darin Ruf is a flash in the pan right?
His power is legit. If they give him 500 AB in 2014 he could hit 25 homers. But won't help in batting average or ... um. ...defensively!
Thoughts going RB-RB-RB in 14 team PPR league? is there enough wideouts for that strategy to work?
Of course. There are plenty of WRs. Just take the right RBs.
Will I regret drafting Victor Cruz over LeVeon Bell in the 4th round? I already got Spiller, McCoy and Larry Fitz.
No, that's fine. He's a rookie. Many variables there. And you have 2 good RBs already.
albers or salazaar this weekend and ROS? thanks
Salazar. Albers is older, it won't last.
Do you take Matt Ryan over Tom Brady?
In round 4, no. But if I can get Matt Ryan 2 rounds later I do.
Thoughts on Billy Hamilton? Even if he doesn't start, is he worth picking up in an effort to pick up steals?
In theory, yes. But he's not likely to be a factor this year.
It being a contract year, do we finally see Kenny Britt put it all together and have a huge season?
He's precisely the type of guy you'd think would play for the contract, isn't he? But it's impossible to predict 16 games for him.
So would it be crazy to take Bush or Sproles in round 2in a 14 team PPR based on their receptions potential? or Do you like MJD, Ridley better?
Crazy? I recommend it!
Matt Davidson or Middlebrooks ROS?
Eric!!!! I can keep Daryl Richardson for a 12th rounder for 3 years. Is that good enough value for not keep DeMarco Murray for an 8th round pick (last year he can be kept)
Yes. For me it is. But D-Rich is no lock. Be aware of that. At least he's probably durable.
Who do you root for in the NFL? In the MLB?
Eagles and Phillies. But well aware those teams stink right now. I'm objective. I like the sports...
Wes Welker appears to be on some peoples bust lists. Working mostly out of the slot last season, tight end Jacob Tamme and wide receiver Brandon Stokley combined for 97 receptions, 1,099 yards and seven touchdowns. Do you predict those numbers for Welker?
I took Welker in the fourth round of our #twittermockdraft and saw mocking from people on Twitter, which is fine, but I don't get it. Welker is gonna have a huge year. I see 90-1,100-7.
Does the loss of all the Eagles WR's hurt or help D Jax? WR2?
They lost one guy that matters, Maclin. DeSean is more a WR3 for me, but there is upside.
Brad Miller or Starlin Castro ROS?
Sadly, not Castro.
Bounce back year for Stafford?
W.Venable or N.McLouth ROS?
Where there's a Will, there's a way.
OK, that is all the time we have for today's chat, so I thank all of you for your attention and encouragement and wish you the best of luck in your baseball leagues and football drafts! And more chats are coming later, so check back! And try a mock draft lobby and practice. It's helpful. Adios!