Fantasy Football Centerpiece: Time To Cut The Cord On Some Big Names? (QB’s)

In a 3-part series, Travis looks at what players are safe dropping in fantasy leagues

With the Kansas City Chiefs thrashing of the New England Patriots on Monday Night Football, the NFL entered it’s fifth week of league action, and with it, the perfect time to hang onto fantasy stars of yesterweek, or to cut the cord and move on while there’s still hope. Hopefully we can wade through some of the garbage and find some fantasy studs on the other side.

Today, we look at three quarterbacks who have been, well, let’s just say less than stellar… Hey, there’s plenty of time to be nasty later.

The Gunslingers

What a wild season for the signal callers this year. We’ve already seen a handful of starters removed for their younger back-ups, headlined by Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr, and Blake Bortles all making their NFL debuts by the quarter point of the season. Bridgewater looks scary with his legs but he’s already banged up an ankle and even if he plays against the Packers on Thursday, I need to see him string together a healthy 4-6 game stretch just to put me at ease.

Some of the stars however, have been a bit of a let-down, so let’s see who’s about to enter Trash Town.

Foles and the Eagles haven't looked as explosive as last year, it's time for Kelly to earn his money.

Foles and the Eagles haven’t looked as explosive as last year, it’s time for Kelly to earn his money.

Defendant #1: Nick Foles

The Facts: Foles has looked worse than completely lost on a handful of occasions this season, and has been taking a pounding behind an Eagles offensive line that isn’t exactly getting things done for Shady McCoy either. Don’t get me wrong, Foles has put up some good games, hitting the 300 yard mark in the first three games before being stunted by a nasty Niners defense, but is now the time to sell to an owner who might be a little more desperate? 

Close, but no cigar. I think Foles is worth hanging onto for now. His next two games are at home against the aforementioned St. Louis Rams and a certain division rival from Gotham. Foles could be in line for a great game against a Rams defense that hasn’t played excellent, and a Giants game that could very well turn into a shoot-out. 

Ruling: Innocent. Give Foles a couple more weeks before moving him to an owner willing to salvage a season.

Defendant #2: Tom Brady

The Facts: Tom Brady has as many fantasy points as Austin Davis. That’s the quarterback of the Rams who didn’t start week 1, and has already had a bye. There’s not much else to discuss here. The Patriots have done a terrible job putting competent deep threats on the roster, and instead flood the depth chart with guys like Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola, who can do damage underneath, but certainly don’t scare you on a week to week basis. 

Brady put together an unbelievable fantasy run, launching plenty of teams to fantasy championships during the 2007-2008 season by heaving deep balls to Randy Moss, ALMOST convincing us that he could throw a decent deep ball to someone other than a top 5 all-time wide out. Jokes on us. 

Ruling: Guilty. There are a lot of players I like to have better numbers than Brady the rest of the way, and they could definitely be available on your wire. Ownership percentages from ESPN.

Tony Romo (90.6%), Ben Roethlisberger (86.1), Kirk Cousins (61.8), and Eli Manning (42.7)

Defendant #3: Cam Newton

A top-5 fantasy QB in every season he’s played, Newton has looked like a shell of his former self in the first three games he’s been on the field. Newton has struggled with a couple different injuries the past 12 months, but he’s been putting himself out on the field anyway, and hasn’t exactly been a super-star, scoring only 1 fantasy point via his legs. Not good.

Give Newton his credit for playing through a rib injury he suffered in the preseason which is great and all, but heart and leadership don’t make great display pieces on your mantle, and remind your friends how much they suck quite like a fantasy trophy does. If you too want to make your friends feel terrible and your significant other question your idea of “high art”, than Newton might be on his way out. 

After a soft match-up against a banged up Bears defense at home, Newton and the Panthers travel to Green Bay and Seattle in back to back weeks. If you’re hovering around 2-2, or 1-3, you might not have time to wait for Newton to get it together.

Ruling: Guilty. Newton, luckily, has the spark of still being a big name. Use it to your advantage and try to trade him to Brady’s owner, and snag one of the signal callers listed above. There are too many serviceable names out there, like Alex Smith (15.0) (bonus pick-up! Ding ding!), to waste time waiting for Newton to get it together.

Check back tomorrow when some of the league’s worst running backs are on the stand to await their fate. Will they join Newton and Brady in Trash Town, or somehow be given an even shorter leash?

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