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The Point After Report: Broken Crystal Ball

By Jared Clifton

If you were able to read my Hurry Up Offense: Predictive Flexing article on Saturday, I took a stab at who I thought would be the top 30 players at the FLEX spot for week 5.  Like a long night of Trick or Treating, the bag was filled with a few full size candy bars, too many Good and Plenty’s and a few razor blades.  Not the best showing for the old Crystal Ball.  

Let’s take a look at the highlights and the more present lowlights.

(***predictions are the first stats, with the actual stats and ½ PPR points in color at the end***)

The Good (or mostly good):

1. WR Darius Slayton NYG: 7 catches/129 yards/ 2 TD (28.4 points) 8/129/0 (16.9)

I had Darius Slayton as my number one FLEX play for the week and although there were several other players that finished ahead of him, I did nail the yardage exactly…he just didn’t get the touchdowns I expected, including having a TD catch nullified by penalty late in the contest.

2. Jamison Crowder: 10 catches/107 yards/1 TD (21.7 points) 8/116/1 (21.6) 

My most accurate prediction of the week just so happened to be the guy I had as my number two FLEX play.  Crowder continued to be heavily targeted (10) with Flacco under center and delivered just 0.1 ½ PPR points shy of the mark.

7. Brandin Cooks: 8 catches/139 yards (17.9 points) 8/161/1 (26.1)

Cooks came in at #7 on my list and delivered above and beyond with a late 29 yard TD to finish with 26.1 ½ PPR points instead of 16.8.  Pretty happy with this one overall.

11.  Marquise Brown: 3 catches/89 yards/1 TD (16.4 points) 6/77/1 (16.8)

Another one that landed pretty close to the total, albeit with the counting stats a little off.  Brown came through with just a 2.4% bump from the projections. 

15. DeVonta Freeman: 68 yards rushing/4 catches/41 yards receiving (12.9 points) 60/2/27/1 (15.7)

Freeman delivered quite nicely with a TD as a bonus, in a good spot against a terrible Cowboys offense.

23. Michael Gallup: 4 catches/81 yards (10.1 points) 4/73/0 (9.3)

The last one that I consider a win for the week, needed two late grabs from Andy Dalton, to get him into his projected range. I missed badly on his receiving partner, CeeDee Lamb, so at least I was able to salvage Gallup on the week.

The Bad Breaks (where are those Touchdowns!):

5.  RB Raheem Mostert SF: 78 yards rushing/3 catches/42 yards receiving/1TD (19.5 points) 90/3/29/0 (13.4)

10.  Curtis Samuel: 28 yards rushing/4 catches/62 yards receiving/1 TD (17 points) 28/5/36/0 (8.9)

22.  Eric Ebron: 3 catches/ 29 yards/1 TD (10.4 points) 5/43/0 (6.8)

The Ugly (oh so ugly)

3. Diontae Johnson: 9 catches/98 yards/1 TD (20.3 points) Inj. 1/-2/0 (0.3) 

An early injury took him out of the game and elevated one Mr.. Chase Claypool to the top of the FLEX heap this week. Four TD’s? Really?  The Crystal Ball couldn’t see that coming.

6. Justin Jefferson: 6 catches/101 yards/1 TD (19.1 points) 3/23/0 (3.8)

17. Tre’quan Smith: 2 catches/67 yards/1 TD (13.6 points) 2/8/0 (1.9)

19. Greg Olsen: 4 catches/41 yards/1 TD (12.4 points) 1/20/0 (2.5)

20.  CeeDee Lamb: 3 catches/49 yards/1 TD (12.4 points) 8/124/0 (16.4)

The points weren’t all that far off, but this is not how I saw this game going.  Gallup looked to be in line to draw more Love and Ballentine, but Lamb was the main man on Sunday, over both Gallup and Cooper.

25.  Mo Alie-Cox: 2 catches/28 yards/1 TD (9.8 points) 0/0/0 (0)

A big fat zero on just one target.  It’s dicey with Alie-Cox and a google egg is always a possibility. 

30. Jerrick McKinnon: 48 rushing yards/2 catches/19 receiving yards (7.7 points) 0/2/5/0 (0.7)

In a beating few saw coming, McKinnon was game scripted out of relevance in this lopsided loss. 

Looking Forward…

We’ll be back with more Predictive Flexing this weekend and I’ll do my best to shine up the old Crystal Ball.  Until then, feel free to go back to the original article and have a look at some of those stat lines that fell in the middle.  Predicting touchdowns and game scripts aren’t easy, so there’s definitely room for error.  I’d certainly be interested in seeing some of your own predictions, so hit me up @unstuckintime82 on Twitter!

Jared Clifton –  Host of Cover 3 Podcast, Editor, Writer
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