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Friday, January 24, 2020

Fantasy Football

Bryce Brown, Christine Michael fantasy: they will split carries

Christine Michael

Bryce Brown and Christine Michael will continue to split carries moving forward for the Seattle Seahawks, providing no clearer picture for fantasy football owners, sadly.

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said Monday that he plans to continue rotating the two running backs.

Michael, who was originally drafted by Seattle, was re-acquired by the team last week after the Cowboys released him in November. He was the leading carrier Sunday against the Browns with 16 totes for 84 yards. Brown carried nine times for 43 yards in his only action of the season, while Derrick Coleman had 10 yards on five carries.

If you are trying to handicap the situation moving forward, we would guess Michael will continue to lead the team in carries while Marshawn Lynch recovers from his abdomen injury.

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Christine Michael a fantasy option after being re-signed by Seahawks?


The Seattle Seahawks re-signed free agent running back Christine Michael on Wednesday.

The Seahawks are in search of running back depth with Marshawn Lynch still recovering from hernia surgery and Thomas Rawls have gone down with a season-ending injury last weekend. Bryce Brown was expected to be the starter prior to the team signing Michael, but Michael knows the system.

For fantasy football purposes, it might be wise to avoid Seattle’s backfield for Week 15. But if you’re desperate, either Michael or Brown could be worth a flier.

The important thing to remember is that Brown has not appeared in an NFL game this season and the Seahawks traded Michael during the preseason. Michael stuck around with the Cowboys for a while before being waived. He was then signed by the Redskins and released before long.

For whatever reason, Michael can’t seem to establish himself with a team. That said, he spent some time with the Seahawks and they are relatively desperate. Brown and Michael could both log some meaningful carries against a horrible Browns run defense in what is expected to be a blowout.

Judge rules to shut down Draftkings, Fanduel in New York


New York Supreme Court Justice Manuel Mendez on Friday granted a preliminary injunction to Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to stop daily fantasy sports sites Draftkings and Fanduel from doing business in the state.

Mendez sided with Schneiderman in ruling that Draftkings and Fanduel are operating illegal gambling websites based on how the laws on illegal gambling are written in New York. The DFS sites had argued that they were collecting entry fees and not taking wagers, which they said does not constitute gambling.

“New York State penal law does not refer to ‘wagering’ or ‘betting,’ rather it states that a person, ‘risks something of value,'” Mendez wrote in his ruling, per Darren Rovell of ESPN.com. “The payment of an ‘entry fee’ as high as $10,600 on one or more contests daily could certainly be deemed risking ‘something of value.'”

As Rovell notes, the popular argument that DFS is a “game of skill” as opposed to gambling was not relevant to Mendez’s decision, as that is not the measuring stick for illegal gambling in the state of New York.

At least 600,000 New Yorkers were playing daily fantasy sports on Fanduel and Draftkings, and they accounted for roughly $200 million in entry fees this year. New York residents have not been permitted to enter paid contests since Schneiderman sent cease-and-desist letters to Draftkings and Fanduel on Nov. 10.

Earlier this week, the New York Assembly held a hearing to discuss the potential regulation of daily fantasy sports. Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow, the head of the Committee on Racing and Wagering, believes that future legislation will legalize and regulate daily fantasy sports.

The bottom line here is that states want to regulate and tax DFS, which has quickly become a billion-dollar industry. As the rally in New York last month showed us, people love Draftkings and Fanduel. Government wants a piece of the pie.

Fans rally in New York to support daily fantasy sports


A group of fans and employees rallied outside the office of New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman to protest his ruling that daily fantasy sports sites FanDuel and DraftKings constituted illegal gambling.

Estimates on the crowd varied depending on the source, but roughly 250 to 300 people showed up, though according to reporters on the scene, a majority of protesters are employed or affiliated with one of the sites. They carried signs, and one even had a bullhorn.

The group contends that daily fantasy is a skill game and not gambling in opposition to Schneiderman’s ruling.

Many carried signs mocking Schneiderman and defending daily fantasy sports.


Bruce Arians, John Brown have messages for fantasy football owners


Arizona Cardinals wide receiver John Brown was active against the Cleveland Browns Sunday, but the speedy playmaker did not end up playing a snap. As you can imagine, that frustrated fantasy football players who had Brown in their lineup.

Do you think Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians cares? Go ahead and ask him about it.


Brown, who has been battling hamstring injuries, wasn’t about to apologize, either. The former Pittsburg State star took things a step further when someone who is unfamiliar with Arizona’s schedule asked him if he plans on playing in Week 9.

Arians and Brown join a long list of current and former NFL coaches and players who have ripped fantasy football owners (here’s another popular example), though their comments were far more entertaining than some before them. The Cardinals want to get Brown healthy because they are 6-2 and he is another weapon in a great offense. As Arians put it, they don’t give a s— about anything else.

Jeremy Langford, DeAngelo Williams, Kendall Gaskins are fantasy options

Jeremy Langford

Jeremy Langford, DeAngelo Williams and Kendall Gaskins are among the players who received opportunities to produce on Sunday because of a rash of injuries to hit the league, and they are players worth looking at for fantasy football owners.

Jeremy Langford received his opportunities as Matt Forte’s backup for the Chicago Bears. Forte left Sunday’s game against Minnesota in the third quarter with a knee injury. Langford, a rookie from Michigan State, came in and rushed for 46 yards on 12 carries. Entering the game he hadn’t done much for his career, as he had recorded just 34 yards on 15 carries with a touchdown. But if Forte is to miss any time, Langford is a player you will want to pick up.

Sadly, Le’Veon Bell got hurt for the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Cincinnati Bengals. DeAngelo Williams is the backup there and broke out a big run of 55 yards. As anyone who watched the first two games of the season could tell you, Williams is a more than capable backup for Bell. If Williams is available in your league, pick him up immediately.

The San Francisco 49ers were hit hard by injuries. The week they released Jarryd Hayne, they saw a bunch of running backs get hurt. Carlos Hyde was already out for them with an injury, then Mike Davis left with a hand injury against the Rams, and Reggie Bush suffered an injury after getting hurt on the concrete sidelines. Enter Kendall Gaskins. He stepped in and took lead back duties for the 49ers. The problem is Gaskins has never done anything in his NFL career. Worse yet, he plays on a crappy team that has no offense. We don’t like him too much as an option and we expect the 49ers to add some depth during the week.

Khiry Robinson is another running back who suffered an injury in Week 8 of the NFL season. The New Orleans Saints already have a crowded backfield, so there isn’t exactly a chance to pick up a running back there. Mark Ingram is probably already owned in your league and he’ll be the one seeing more action. C.J. Spiller may also see more action depending on how bad the injury is to Robinson, so he is an option if he’s available in your league.

To recap: I’d rank running back fantasy pickups in the following order – Williams, Langford, Spiller and Gaskins. If it looks like Bell’s injury is not as serious while Forte’s is, I’d reverse the order on Williams and Langford.

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Christine Michael a fantasy must-add, expected to start


There are a handful of instances throughout the NFL season where a player who has done absolutely nothing needs to be added in all fantasy football leagues, and Christine Michael is one of those players.

The Dallas Cowboys traded a late-round draft pick to Seattle for Michael back in September. The third-year running back has carried the ball just two times for five yards this season, but the Cowboys have reportedly used the bye week to prepare him to be the starter.

Dallas running backs coach Gary Brown said last week that the team is ready to “take the reins” off Michael and “let him rock.”

Joseph Randle has been starting at tailback for the Cowboys, but he has not generated big plays behind a dominant offensive line. He’s averaging just 3.9 yards per carry after averaging a whopping 6.7 in a change-of-pace role behind DeMarco Murray last season. The Cowboys likely want him to return to that role, with Darren McFadden working in on third downs.

The Seahawks used a second-round pick on Michael back in 2013, so you know there is some talent there. If he gets the majority of the reps in what can be a phenomenal rushing offense, he could wind up being a fantasy football league-winner.

Photo: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports