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


Mailbag for September 20, 2023

Ian Allan answers your fantasy football questions. In this edition: When will Puka Nacua catch a touchdown? Emerging Sam LaPorta. Will Cam Akers re-unite with the Rams? How long until Alvin Kamara starts. Underrated Jakobi Meyers. And more.

Question 1

Will Puka Nacua score touchdowns? In my league, points for catches max out at 5 points for 6 catches — anything above that counts for nothing. A receiving TD, in contrast, is worth 6 points. So, in Week 2, KJ Osborn on my bench, outscored Puka, whom I started. I love all his targets and catches. Will the TDs follow?

Eric Pryne (Vashon, WA)

I don’t see any reason why they won’t. I saw Nacua catch a touchdown in the preseason. It can be done. Matthew Stafford is currently on pace to throw for 5,449 yards, but with only 8.5 TDs. That’s not going to continue. The yards will decline, while there will be more touchdowns.

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Question 2

In the weekly writeup, you said not to give up on Freiermuth especially this week given the nice matchup. But 2 catches in 2 games does scare me and I have some really nice options on the wire with LaPorta, Ertz and Kmet all available. All 4 of these guys are ranked similarly in the latest redrafter. Would you look to swap into one of those free agent TEs? I'm already starting Najee so have Steelers exposure. And I have both Montgomery and St. Brown but they are injured which could send more targets to LaPorta.

Jake Frack (Tuckahoe, NY)

I believe the Steelers will turn things around. They’ve opened against two of the top half dozen defenses in the league. Let’s talk after these next two against the Raiders and Texans. I’m not quitting on Freiermuth or Najee. At the same time, the other guys you mention are also viable tight ends. I sure like the look of LaPorta (pictured). He’s caught 5 passes in each of his first two games. No other tight end in the last 20 years has done that.

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Question 3

I was one of the unlucky souls that drafted Akers, believing what McVay said last Decemeber in that they would be 'Crazy' to not have big plans for him going forward. Luckily, I picked up Kyren Williams last week on waivers. Would you cut Akers or keep him as a handcuff to Williams in case he were to get hurt?

Brian Boyd (Maple Grove, MN)

It sounds to me like Akers is done. If Kyren Williams gets hurt, I think the Rams will replace him with some combination of Ronnie Rivers (their current No. 2), Royce Freeman (apparently, he’s still in the league), Zach Evans (who isn’t ready to play) and whatever free agent they can find.

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Question 4

Do you think Kamara will be startable immediately once his suspension is over, or will they ease him in? I'm in a bind having drafted Akers as my No. 2 RB. Incidentally, any idea why McVay hates Akers so much?

Alex Konop (Northport, NY)

I expect Kamara to be in the starting lineup in Week 4. He’s their best back. As for Akers and McVay, they also butted heads last year, recall, with Akers at one point either leaving the team or being sent home for a couple of weeks. “Philosophical differences,” it was said. I think that means Akers was pissed off he wasn’t getting enough carries or playing time. I don’t imagine they’ll be bringing him back again this time, and I don’t envision any team trading for him.

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Question 5

Would you start Jakobi Meyers over any of the following this week - Olave, Lamb or Ridley?


I like Meyers a lot. He caught 9 of the 10 passes thrown his way in that opener in Denver, including a couple of short TDs that were well-timed and executed. Seems like him and Garoppolo have been putting in extra work after practice. I like the structure of that offense, with everything tending to flow through the two main wide receivers. They don’t mess around much with three- and four-receiver sets, and they’re not using their tight ends. But starting him somebody like Olave, Lamb or Ridley, that would be tough.

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Question 6

Rashod Bateman ... Each year, there seems to be this "he'll be primed to explode this year!" preseason hype. But I'm ready to pull the plug on him. However, I have him under contract thru 2024. Is there a possibility he becomes worth a roster spot by next season? There are other guys on the waiver wire I'd rather be stashing on my roster right now.

Adam Holtz (Rochester, MN)

He's caught all 6 of the passes thrown his way. But I’m ready to move on and see what’s behind Door No. 2.

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Question 7

14-team league mainly TD scoring with some yardage bonuses. With David Montgomery probably out, I have to fill my flex position this week. Choices are Samaje Perine, Kenneth Gainwell, Courtland Sutton or Jake Ferguson. Kind of leaning to Ferguson maybe blowing up for some TDs against Arizona. What do you think?

Chris Tilley (Riverview, FL)

Dak Prescott likes connecting with tight ends around the end zone. I think Ferguson is your guy. Dallas’ offensive line isn’t as good as it’s been in the past, and Pollard isn’t a crushing inside runner, so I don’t think they’ll score as many rushing touchdowns as usual. That should translate into more short touchdown passes.

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Question 8

Hi Ian, long time subscriber, thanks for all the hard work from you and your team. My question is should I target Gibbs or Etienne for a trade? The context is that I currently have D Mont and Bigsby on my roster. I know you're been high all preseason on D Mont, which is why I drafted him at a value. I took Bigsby late as a flier in case of Etienne injury. So my thinking is, if I can pick up Etienne I have a nice starter and his handcuff. On the other hand, if Gibbs does at some point dominate touches over D Mont, having him on my roster would be better. Obviously there is no guarantee I can get either of them via trade, but strategy wise who would you target between the two?

Matthew Evans (Upland, CA)

Gibbs’ price just went up (with Montgomery looking likely to miss a game or two). In general, the reasoning is sound. I think when you’re carrying backup running backs, it’s good to start by looking at the backups for your own guys. If your starter gets hurt, that’s the week you would be needing the fill-in, and you’ve already got him.

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Question 9

In a half point PPR league, if torn over whom to start in the flex (with options of RB/ WR/ TE), because you judge their upside to be about the same … do you find that you have a tendency to lean toward inserting the WR or the RB? Curious whether there’s any info on which formation tends to be more potent. In my particular situation, it’s a 16-teamer, so the options are often dart throws.

Greg Resin (Torrance, CA)

I tend to default to the player I believe will at least give me something. Particularly in PPR formats, I’m looking for guys that I am confident will catch some passes. I tend to like those guys more than the dart-throw type players who may catch a 70-yard touchdown every two months. I don’t like to go away empty handed.

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Question 10

Hi Ian - I love your content and takes, so I just wanted to say thank you. I'm in a smaller 0.5 PPR where we start two TEs – I had Andrews, Ferguson, and Kmet but I dropped Kmet for Likely pre-week 1 and then Likely for Nacua post-week 1. I can't decide if I want to re-pick up Kmet and drop or stash Ferguson - LaPorta, Smith, and Johnson are also there. I know that it's roster Kmet and stash LaPorta based on my re-drafter rankings, but who would you want to roster and stash ROS?

Chase Grainger (Weston, FL)

Thanks for the kind words. I like Kmet and LaPorta. There’s a PPR element to the league, so I think you want to get those guys who are going to give you a baseline of production each week. They’re catching balls.

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