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Fantasy Football Index publisher Ian Allan answers your questions about fantasy football. Click here to submit a question.

Mailbag

Mailbag for December 15, 2022

Ian Allan answers your fantasy football questions. In this edition: Curtis Samuel's changing role. Kicker and Defense matchups for Week 16. Will Khalil Herbert or J.K. Dobbins be a breakout back in 2023? And more.

Question 1

Whats your opinion on Curtis Samuel going farward this season?

Donald Montgomery (Covington, LA)

They’re not using him as much as they were early in the season. He caught 6-8 passes in four of his first five games, when they were consistently getting him the ball around the line of scrimmage – short throws. But around the time Carson Wentz got hurt, they tweaked the offense, with more rushing and fewer of those plays. Samuel caught 6 passes for 63 yards in his last game (which was exactly how he was playing back in September) but he’s caught only 16 passes in his last seven other games. With Washington having success running the ball, I don’t think they’re going back to the pass-heavy approach, particularly with two fo the next three games against teams I think they can run on (Giants, Browns). Keep in mind when grading Samuel that they also use him regularly on running plays. In his last seven games he’s carried the ball 23 times for 137 yards, with a touchdown – about 3 carries for 20 yards per week.

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Question 2

Looking for DST and kicker options in week 16. I have Cowboys and Jason Myers but both have tough matchups. DST options include Titans (@HOU), Bills (@CHI), Broncos (@LAR), Jets (JAX). For kickers I can pick up Gano (@MIN), McManus (@LAR), Bullock (@HOU), Boswell (LV), Zuerlein (JAX). Do any of these stick out as being better than Cowboys and/or Myers for week 16?

Jake Frack (Tuckahoe, NY)

Seattle plays at Kansas City in Week 16. I wouldn’t put Myers on the field for that game. Not a possibility. I’d rank him behind at least three of those other guys you mention. With the Jets having problems finishing drives with touchdowns, I like the look of Zuerlein. And I would be comfortable with Boswell in the 50th anniversary of the Immaculate Reception. Bullock has been a crappy scorer this year, but I would think he’ll be coming out of that Texans game with some points.

With the defenses, I ran some composite numbers on the site (showing the totals for the defenses and offenses in each matchup). They indicate that you have access to three of the four best matchups for Week 16. Buffalo at Chicago looks very promising, and the numbers are exactly tied for Dallas (vs. Philly) and Tennessee (at Houston). Dallas has been a good contributor for you all year, so I would stick with them unless you have an option that you are certain is better. (I would hate to sit down the Cowboys, only to watch KaVontae Turpin finally bust loose for that long kick return I’ve been waiting for).

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Question 3

I need to start one of these 3 players in my flex - Alvin Kamara, Mike Williams, Chris Godwin. I should point out it is 1 point PPR but while rushing yards is the standard 1 pt for 10 yards, receiving yards is 1 pt for every 15 yards. For that reason I lean Kamara but he has really struggled of late.

Steven Alessandrini (Flanders, NJ)

If you want to go off your gut, you can talk yourself into Williams or Godwin. Williams had the big game against the Dolphins, and Godwin has caught 6-plus passes in a long stretch of games. But if you go with the numerical approach, settling on what you think is fair projection in all of the categories (rushing yards, receiving yards, catches, touchdowns), Kamara is the pick, and it’s not really even close. I’ve got him finishing with about 16 points this week – over 3 more than Godwin and over 5 more than Williams. I understand that running game has been down of late, but I think they can run it some at how against the Falcons. And Kamara tends to catch a lot of passes – just 2 in his last game, but 44 in his other seven with Andy Dalton at quarterback.

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Question 4

Snuck into the playoffs 8th seed. Devin Singletary or Rachaad White at flex? Tyler Lockett or Allen Lazard as my 3rd WR? Thanks!

Patrick LaMendola (Penfield, NY)

I’ve got similar grades on Singletary and White. With the receivers, I’ve got Lockett slotted a fair amount higher. The matchup (against San Francisco) is less than ideal, but he’s been playing awfully well. And if the Seahawks can’t run in that game (and I don’t think they can) they’ll be throwing.

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Question 5

Long time subscriber here. I'm rebuilding a team in my 20-year dynasty league. Roster below. We drop/draft 4 players each season. Khalil Herbert and J.K. Dobbins are both currently available. Would it be worthwhile to drop Dotson and pick up one of the RBs? Joe Burrow, Justin Fields, Rhamondre Stevenson, Najee Harris, Rachaad White, Devin Singletary, A.J. Brown, Garrett Wilson, Christian Watson, Diontae Johnson, Michael Pittman, Jahan Dotson, Kyle Pitts, Pat Freiermuth, Dallas Goedert, Daniel Carlson, Chiefs

Bryan Simonsen (Walnut, IA)

To me, Dotson looks like a legit player. I haven’t seen anything that causes me to believe that Washington has any regrets about picking him in the middle of the first round. I think he’s going to be a good receiver for a lot of years. I would think he’ll have a better career than Herbert or Dobbins. On the other hand, you’re overloaded with good receivers (including two other rookies that look even more promising). So some logic in adding a player at running back, and those guys both have their selling points. Herbert has been very effective with his opportunities, averaging 6 yards per carry – 2 more than David Montgomery. Montgomery will be a free agent in March, with some chance the Bears opt to let him walk, move Herbert into their No. 1 role, then sign or draft a new backup. Dobbins will be part of Baltimore’s backfield next year – probably their leading rusher, but perhaps their No. 2 guy. I don’t at this point have any idea what kind of offense they’re running. (Will Greg Roman be back?) Dobbins ran for 120 yards on Sunday at Pittsburgh, but I don’t think he’s fully healthy right now – seemed to be gimping on his long run in that game.

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