As Week 7 approaches, we begin to look at our drafted rosters to optimize lineups. A key aspect of managing our rosters is the ability to remain active and not get complacent. In the past, I have worked on a Game Theory I call “The Revolving Door”. I will combine that knowledge with this article to produce My Week 7 Stash Guide. Check out the full article at www.theleaguewinners.com if you want a full explanation of the theory. For this article, I will summarize it:
“The Revolving Door”
The Revolving Door is simple. Unless you have had extremely good luck in your drafts, you are bound to have two or three players at the bottom of your lineup that you will move on from. Instead of just letting these players take up space at the bottom of your bench, you should be sending out the revolving door in favour of high-upside stashes.
The key to this theory is to break the week of games into slates. Say I have two players on my team that I wish to move on from. Instead of simply dropping them for a player I want, I will go through my flowsheet. First I will drop them for two players I like from the Thursday Night Football game. If those two stashes don’t hit, I will drop them for two players from the 1:00 p.m. games on Sunday. If those players don’t produce results I will then drop them for two players from the 4:00 p.m. games on Sunday. I continue this process for Sunday Night Football as well as Monday Night Football.
So by the end of week one, I will have rotated those two dropped players through an additional eight dart throws. You may be wondering why I would do this. It’s simple. Those players aren’t producing, so I will drop them in hopes that one of the players I stash either breaks out or has an injury in front of him opening him up for an increased role.
Some weeks, this theory produces no usable players, so I continue with it into the following week. In approximately half the weeks, however, I will find a valuable asset. From there I can then choose to keep that player or try and sell high. This strategy frequently keeps me out in front of the waiver wire. It saves me countless FAABs when I already have that week’s hot waiver added to my roster. If I don’t believe in that player, I simply flip him to someone who does. That strategy has no downside. I’m already dropping the two players, so why not take free stabs at a potential league winner? The only thing this strategy requires is some patience and planning by the person who uses it.
So, now that you have an idea of my Revolving Door strategy. Let’s implement it for Week 1 and take a look at some of the players I will look to stash where available.
Thursday Night Football (Jaguars @ Saints)
The Jaguars and Saints present only a handful of stash options, most of which are at the running back position. Tank Bigsby, Jamaal Williams and Kendre Miller are all worthwhile stashes as handcuffs behind elite running backs. All three could potentially hold limited standalone value, but an injury to their team’s starter is where their true value lies.
As far as pass catchers are concerned. Zay Jones and Rashid Shaheed are both useful flex options in the event they are available on your waiver wire, but both have limited upside.
The Saints have two potentially interesting options at tight end. Foster Moreau and Taysom Hill have both seen increased usage, but both are desperation plays. Still, if you need a tight end there are worse options than these two.
Sunday 1:00 Slate
This slate of games is always the most difficult because most of the teams will play in it. Here I prefer to target handcuff running backs behind injury-prone starters and upside young receivers who could be primed for a breakout. It won’t hold in week one, but young players coming off of a bye are the best targets here.
In the 1:00 slate this week we have no strong options at running back as the market is pretty picked over. Tyler Allgeier, Keaton Mitchell, Kareem Hunt, Craig Reynolds, Zamir White and Sean Tucker all have handcuff value if an of them gets a chance at a starting role. None hold standalone value at this point.
The options at wide receiver are much better than running backs. Wan’Dale Robinson, Josh Downs and Jameson Williams are all solid buy-lows with elite potential. All three have the talent to be WR2 assets and all are worth stashing.
The tight-end options consist of Michael Mayer and Cade Otton. Otton has seen heavy playing time but has not seen the production to go with it. Mayer on the other hand has seen his targets increase in two straight weeks and looks to be on the brink of a rookie breakout. He is one of my favourite stashes of the week.
Sunday 4:00 Slate
The 4:00 slate of games is not as big as the 1:00 slate, but it’s still a hefty one to sort through. The same principles apply as above, handcuff running backs and young receivers.
The 4:00 slate gives us three handcuff options who currently have injuries clearing their path significantly. Keaontay Ingram, AJ Dillon and Zach Evans are all about to see an increase in opportunity with injuries ahead of them. All three could see spikes in value and production in Week 7 and all are great options.
At wide receiver, the options consist of some youngsters with potential. Michael Wilson, Marvin Mims, Jayden Reed, Rashee Rice, Quentin Johnston and Jaxon Smith-Njigba are all solid options. None stand out among the group and are all equally worthwhile options with the exception of rashee Rice who would be my choice. rice seems to be emerging as the WR1 for Kansas City and could be in store for a massive breakout.
Similar to the 1:00 slate it has long-term options, it’s two youngsters that have shown limited production but have significant upside if they hit. Trey McBride has seen his usage increase over the past few weeks and is a worthy option to stash. Luke Musgrave has been good, but not great in the Green bay offence, he could be a low-end TE1 if things break the right way for him.
Sunday Night Football (Dolphins @ Eagles)
The Dolphins and Eagles make for a tough stash spot. Most of the relevant options in this matchup are highly-rostered players.
Jeff Wilson and Salvon Ahmed have short-term value as the backup to Raheem Mostert. These are not league-winning options but they have solid flex appeal on a high-flying Dolphins offence.
Aside from that, we have nothing more than a desperation play at each position. At running back we have Kenneth Gainwell who could be a star again if he is ever to regain his starting role from D’Andre Swift, who is always an injury risk.
Braxton Berrios has been useful from time to time this season, mostly when Jaylen Waddle has been hurt. He’s a solid stash if you are receiver desperate.
Durham Smythe has seemed to get to the cusp of breaking out as a tight end without ever getting there. He’s a good stash in case he ever finds his way.
Monday Night Football (49ers @ Vikings)
The 49ers and Vikings are in almost an identical situation in the sense that most of the good options are heavily rostered players.
The best options to stash need to be stashed this exact second in case Christian McCaffrey’s injury lingers. Jordan Mason and Elijah Mitchell need to be rostered in every league immediately. It’s uncertain if McCaffrey is able to play this week and any 49ers running back that becomes the starter even temporarily is a diamond in the rough.
KJ Osborn is a solid stash if he is available. He could potentially see added value in the absence of Justin Jefferson and is a great speculative add.
Aside from the above options, it’s slim pickings. Cam Akers, Jauan Jennings and Ross Dwelley are all injury stashes but do not have standalone value with healthy teammates.
Bye Week Stashes (Panthers, Bengals, Cowboys, Texans, Jets, Titans)
This section is where we take a look at some potential stashes of the players that are on bye this week. This is particularly useful depending on your league settings. If you can drop players who have already played but who were on your bench it’s a great idea to drop the bad ones from guys who were on a bye as they likely don’t have to clear waivers.
The best options at running back are Chuba Hubbard and Tyjae Spears. Hubbard is a great play while Sanders battles injuries and Spears is inching closer by the day to grabbing a huge share in the Tennessee backfield.
At wide receiver, we have mostly rookies available to stash. Rookies are known for seeing usage increases post-bye week and these are some solid options in case they break out. Jonathan Mingo, Trenton Irwin and Andrei Iosivas all have potential, but none have done anything to this point. Let’s see how they look after the bye week.
As far as tight ends go, Jake Ferguson, Irv Smith, Tyler Conklin and Chigoziem Okonkwo are all worthy of a stash and are all high-end TE2s with low-end TE1 upside.
The theme here is preparation and patience. This strategy is not for the casual fantasy manager. It’s for those of us in tough leagues who realize even the smallest edge can be the difference between winning and losing.
Not all of these stash players will hit. Realistically, most of them will miss. Even if we only hit on one of these stashes a month, it’s an extra four undrafted players that we paid nothing for, but who added value to our fantasy team.