View profile

PFN Table for 6: Derrick Henry, Michael Thomas, Taysom Hill, Chuba Hubbard, and more

Fantasy 365
Written by PFN Fantasy Director BJ Rudell, the PFN Fantasy Breakfast, Table for 6 fantasy newsletter comes to you every Sunday and Tuesday at 6 AM ET with exclusive content and advice you won’t find anywhere else. 

Welcome back to Table for 6: Pro Football Network’s rundown of six players we are closely tracking today.
Six players whose values could pop or plummet before the sun goes down. Six players who could make or break your fantasy team if you manage your roster to maximize the probabilities.
Today’s rundown will begin with the same player we started with on Sunday, for obvious reasons.
Guest of Honor
Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans
Two mornings ago, subscribers to this newsletter awoke to my warnings about Henry. Not because he isn’t one of the greatest running backs of his generation (he clearly is). And not because he isn’t one of the most physically imposing running backs of any generation (he clearly is).
My warnings were based on statistics. Facts. 
Historical evidence. Fantasy success requires playing the probabilities. 
If we know that 73% of RBs who earn 350+ touches end up regressing the following season, shouldn’t we factor this into our decision-making? Or said another way, why would we pursue strategies that are only 27% likely to pay off?
For the second time in three days, Henry is our guest of honor at Table for 6. He will undergo foot surgery this morning. Titan head coach Mike Vrabel acknowledged there’s no timetable for his return. One can only hope he can return this season, echoing Vrabel’s hope that he will be out “for the short term.”
Henry serves as a reminder that overworked RBs are higher-than-normal injury risks. Yes, it could have happened to anyone. Some might call his injury a fluke. And many injuries are flukes. But many injuries occur on contact. 
The more you’re on the field, the more contact opportunities there are. And the more you carry the ball, the more you might get tackled. And the more you get tackled, the higher the probability that you might land awkwardly or might get banged up by a defender.
That’s what happened Sunday with 7:43 left in the first quarter. Henry ran it just like he’s done a record-setting 219 times this season. 
Colts defensive tackle Grover Stewart grabbed him around his body and pulled him down. It didn’t look bad at first, but that turned out to be the breaking point.
As we look ahead to next summer’s fantasy drafts, remember Henry. Remember Christian McCaffrey, who was similarly overworked in 2019. These are no isolated incidents. Collectively, they are high-probability occurrences. 
We can ignore them or embrace them. And if we embrace them, we need to change the way we draft and manage our teams.
(Table for 6 continues below)
PFN Fantasy Podcast (November 1)
Week 9 Fantasy Injury Report: Jameis Winston and Derrick Henry Injuries
Other Guests
Taysom Hill, QB, New Orleans Saints
The Saints beat the Bucs on Sunday despite losing Jameis Winston to a torn ACL. Now 5-2 and a half-game behind Tampa Bay in the NFC South, New Orleans has a legitimate shot at winning the division—something that might have been out-of-reach if they had lost. 
The question now is whether Hill or Trevor Siemian will take the reins of this offense, as Winston is out for the year. Hill suffered a concussion in Week 5 and still hasn’t been cleared to play. 
The versatile QB showed well last year as a spot starter for Drew Brees and a gadget player. As a starter, he hit between 17.5 and 24.2 fantasy points in each of his four games from Week 11 to Week 14. Managers in need of a QB1 should reach for him on waivers, on the strong possibility that he’ll take over the starting job once he’s active.
Marlon Mack, RB, Indianapolis Colts
His second appearance on Table for 6. Mack is the third wheel in a high-functioning Colt running game. Tennessee and several other teams need a back, and Mack has the bell cow experience to step in and play a lead role. 
Last week, I speculated that the Ravens, Saints, Chiefs, and Chargers “are among several teams that might benefit from acquiring Mack.” The Saints have since acquired Mark Ingram, while the Ravens are getting surprisingly decent production from their aging trio of veterans. Could Indianapolis trade him to the intra-divisional rival Titans? Anything is possible, and Mack is one of the best available RBs out there.
Chuba Hubbard, RB, Carolina Panthers
This past Saturday, I traded Alexander Mattison for Hubbard in my fantasy league. I received a starting RB in my push to win this week, and his 14 points turned out to be much-needed. My opponent received an elite RB handcuff with proven RB1 potential if Dalvin Cook gets hurt again. 
At first glance, my opponent got the better end of the deal, and he approved the trade shortly after ESPN’s David Newton reported that McCaffrey was “on target” to return next weekend. So this appeared to be a one-week rental for me. 
But yesterday, head coach Matt Rhule stated, “Hopefully we can get Christian back soon. If it’s not this week, hopefully it will be next week.”
If you’re rostering Hubbard, don’t be too quick to sell. He remains the team’s lead back, and there’s no guarantee McCaffrey will return soon.
Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints
What do you do if you drafted Thomas? When I was 1-3 and desperate for some wins, I packaged him in a 2-for-2 trade for Antonio Brown. Brown’s production single-handedly led me to two straight victories in Weeks 5 and 6. 
Thomas remains no better than bench fodder. His troubled relationship with this franchise has been documented all year. But through it all, there has been hope that he would return to the field once eligible in Week 7. That didn’t happen, and nothing changed in Week 8. 
A cryptic tweet Sunday morning suggests Thomas might not return anytime soon. In expressing solidarity with the Falcons’ Calvin Ridley—who has missed two of his last three games due to “personal reasons”—Thomas tweeted to Ridley, “I’m standing in that hole with you.”
If you are relying on Thomas to return sometime soon, you might recalibrate expectations.
Rob Gronkowski, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gronkowski has returned to Table for 6 because back spasms forced him out of Sunday’s game. We can’t take this lightly. Tampa Bay needs Gronkowski for the playoffs. They have enough talent to reach the postseason without him. I’m expecting them to take things cautiously. 
That would be bad news for fantasy managers who thought they’d struck gold early this season. If Gronkowski is put on the shelf, O.J. Howard would bring more upside than Cameron Brate, though both would be touchdown-dependent, TE2 flyers. 
Gronkowski’s absence would have a more significant impact on Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Antonio Brown (when he returns from his injury). Tom Brady can comfortably feed two or three of these “big three” any given week.  
More fantasy football analysis from PFN
NFL Start 'em, Sit 'em Week 9: Can DeVonta Smith be trusted against the Bills?
Did you enjoy this issue? Yes No
Pro Football Network
Pro Football Network @PFNFantasy

The Fantasy 365 newsletter from Pro Football Network brings the most important fantasy football news and insights straight to your inbox for free every morning from the PFN Fantasy Football team, 365 days of the year.

In order to unsubscribe, click here.
If you were forwarded this newsletter and you like it, you can subscribe here.
Created with Revue by Twitter.