September 19, 2019

Fantasy Strategy: Burnham poised for another big week

BCLions.com

The return of Andrew Harris, along with rising salaries on some previous mid-tier mainstays, makes building lineups a little trickier than it’s been over the past few weeks. It will be difficult to roster some of the high-priced studs this week without making sacrifices or unconventional decisions at a few positions.

QUARTERBACK

Chris Streveler, WPG – $7,575

Bo Levi Mitchell, CGY – $9,321

Vernon Adams Jr., MTL – $10,605

McLeod Bethel Thompson, TOR – $10,288

Mike Reilly, BC – $9,584

Much like golf, the only thing that matters at the end of the day is what the score is, not what it looks like getting there. Chris Streveler isn’t a traditional CFL quarterback with steady pocket presence and consistent downfield accuracy but the points he racks up as a ball carrier count all the same. At the end of the day, points are points, no matter what they look like getting there. Since taking over the starting QB job in Winnipeg, Streveler has averaged 12 carries for 76.7 yards and over a TD per game as a ball carrier. Priced just over $7K, that would make him the top valued RB on the slate. In many ways, his passing yards come as a bonus to his consistent value rushing the football. The matchup versus Montreal this week should help in that right too as they allow the second-most yards per attempt this season (8.83). It’s worth noting though that with no Winnipeg receiver projected for more than four targets, it’s not likely worth running him in stacks.


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Bo Levi Mitchell finally passed for over 300 yards in a game this season in his Week 14 matchup versus Hamilton. The skies should get even more clear for him this week in Toronto where he faces an Argos defence allowing the most yards (9.48) and TDs per pass attempt in the league. Even Jon Jennings and the struggling Ottawa offence managed 327 yards and a TD versus Toronto, so this could be the big coming-out party for Mitchell in 2019.

Vernon Adams Jr. had a relatively quiet week versus Saskatchewan with only 18.2 Fantasy points and the road gets no easier in Week 15 versus Winnipeg. The Alouettes are a league-average passing offence (8.3 yards/att) and face a Bombers defence that allows the third-fewest passing yards per attempt (7.47) along with the second-fewest passing TDs per attempt. Their having compiled 35 sacks and forced turnovers could also lead to the most pressure Adams has faced this season. A lot of Adams’ biggest games have come through work as a ball carrier and he has just 32 rushing yards over his past three games while Winnipeg has allowed just six rushing TDs this season. All this adds up to a week in which it’s likely best to give Adams a pass.

Throughout much of 2019, a matchup versus the Stampeders defence is enough to make Fantasy players look elsewhere at quarterback. If Dane Evans and the TiCats were able to pass for 360 yards last week though, there’s no reason that McBeth and the highest volume passing attack in the league shouldn’t be able to manage something similar. The Argos project to run the second-most offensive snaps and most pass attempts in Week 15. The Stampeders allow the second-fewest passing yards (7.44) and third-fewest passing TDs per attempt so it’s not like success is a given just because of volume. As the second-highest priced QB on the slate, McBeth is a questionable spend.

Much like matchups with the Argos defence, games versus the Redblacks have often proved to be the cure for what has ailed opposing QBs Fantasy production this season. Mike Reilly returned to 2018 Fantasy form for a week versus the Redblacks, with 30.5 Fantasy points. It’s worth noting though that 12 of those Fantasy points were on plunges from the 1-yard line that could easily have been scored for other players. Apart from those rushing TDs, 15.4 Fantasy points on 286 yards passing and a pair of TDs through the air would have led to just another average performance. The return matchup in Ottawa this week will likely draw a lot of players his direction again, and the Redblacks allowing a league-high 21 rushing TDs to this point means he may well get back in the endzone on keepers again.

RUNNING BACK

Andrew Harris, WPG – $10,845

John White, BC – $6,667

CJ Gable, EDM – $8,695

Punt Single:

Ka’Deem Carey, CGY – $5,371

After two weeks of bargain pricing with Johnny Augustine, Fantasy players wanting a piece of the action in the highest volume rushing attack in the league (25 carries/game) will have to be prepared to pay full price for Andrew Harris returning from his PED suspension. The Bombers lead the league in both rushing attempts (244) and yards (1389) and should continue to be very run-heavy versus an Alouettes defence that allows league average rates of yards and TDs per carry. If there’s any reason to be wary of Harris, it’s that he has just one reception in his past two games and Chris Streveler’s propensity to run the football himself may cut down on Harris’s targets further. A jaunt down Narrative Street shows Harris is coming back “with a chip on his shoulder”, but it remains to be seen whether than will affect play calling at all.

Having missed the past two games due to a lower-body injury, John White returned to practice this week and may be prepared to return to the starting lineup this week versus Ottawa. In his past three games, White had averaged 7.67 yards per carry which could turn into excellent production in an offence that gave Brandon Rutley 20 carries a week ago. Ottawa’s league-high rate of rushing TDs allowed per carry is also pretty enticing for those considering White in Week 15. The reduced price tag he offers on a week with few clear value options also makes him a great option for salary relief.

This hasn’t been a banner year for CJ Gable as he’s eclipsed 100 yards rushing just once since Week 2 and has just three total TDs on the season. The Eskimos uncertainty at QB due to Trevor Harris’ injury also creates some questions regarding Gable. The offence may shift a little more focus to the run game with Kilgore under centre, but the overall efficiency may dip. Kilgore also showed a propensity to check down the ball to Gable as a receiver though, as Gable had eight receptions in their last game versus Calgary. The TiCats defence is generally one to target with opposing RBs as they allow the third-most yards (5.38) and TDs per carry. Gable is a volatile and TD dependent Fantasy option this week, but certainly still worthy of consideration. Those interested in Gable will have to keep an eye out for news regarding who will start at QB this week for the Eskimos.

Ka’Deem Carey seems to have become the starting RB of choice in Calgary over the past two games, however, Calgary runs the second-lowest percentage of run plays in the league (29.8%) and that has led to continued disappointing production from their backfield regardless of who’s starting. The Stampeders, somewhat uncharacteristically, are averaging the third-fewest yards and TDs per rush attempt this season. Beyond just the salary relief, Carey offers though, the matchup versus Toronto makes him an appealing option. The Argos allow the most yards per rush attempt (5.63) and second-most TDs per rush attempt in the league, so if Carey is ever going to have an explosive week, this should be the one.

RECEIVER

Brandon Banks, HAM – $12,537

Bralon Addison, HAM – $9,188

Eric Rogers, CGY – $8,335

Bryan Burnham, BC – $9,684

Derel Walker, TOR – $9,396

Greg Ellingson, EDM – $8,523

DaVaris Daniels, EDM – $8,108

Lemar Durant, BC – $5,421

Quan Bray, MTL – $4,490

Punt Single(s):

Lucky Whitehead, WPG – $3,805

Josh Huff, CGY – $2,500

Eric Rogers has seen his production grow since Mitchell returned from injury as he has averaged seven receptions for 103 yards and a touchdown in each of his past two games. Their matchup with an Argos defence that allows the most yards (9.48) and TDs per target this season, makes them both solid options in Week 15. With their salaries as high as they are, a double-stack is nearly impossible but those using Mitchell at QB should certainly budget for at least one of them. The supporting cast of Huff, Sindani, and Klukas are potential punt options this week as well.

Volume is often one of the key indicators for offensive production at WR and the combo of Banks and Addison combined to average nearly 20 targets per game. The difficulty for them this week will be a matchup with an Eskimos defence that allows the fewest plays per game to opposing offences (49.6), leading Hamilton to project for just 53.8 offensive snaps this week. Edmonton also allows a league-low 7.2 yards per target to opposing receivers. Banks and Addison are two of the most dangerous receivers in the league, but both are more contrarian options this week in this matchup at their current salary levels. If gambling on a Hamilton receiver, Addison is probably the one to have as he is second in the league in targets (33) and air yards (300) over his past three games.

Bryan Burnham was one of the most popular receivers in Fantasy in Week 14 and put up solid but unspectacular numbers with nine receptions for 95 yards as the receiving TDs went to secondary options like Durant and Carter. This may leave some players looking for greener pastures, but it would be wise to stick with Burnham if going back to the well with Reilly in Week 15 as his WOPR is tops in the league this season. Ottawa continues to allow the third most yards per target (8.64) and if just a couple plays break his way, he could be the top WR on the slate.

The Argos receiving corps, led by Derel Walker, draw one of the most difficult matchups in the league in Week 15, as Calgary allows the second-fewest yards (7.44) and third-fewest TDs per target. Like the Hamilton duo of Banks and Addison, matchup and salary may make him more of a contrarian option than a core play, but Walker has averaged 10 targets and 144 air yards per game over his past three starts leading to the third-highest WOPR in the league over that stretch. Walker is certainly the top stacking option if using McBeth at QB this week.

With Logan Kilgore set to potentially start at QB this week versus Hamilton, the entirety of the Eskimos receiving corps should be expected to take a hit in efficiency. As it is, the Edmonton passing attack has just two receiving TDs in their past three games and now face a Hamilton defence that has allowed just nine receiving TDs all season – the lowest rate in the CFL. All of Ellingson, Daniels, and Collins are priced expecting a TD but are unlikely to accomplish the feat. If rolling the dice on the Kilgore route at QB, DaVaris Daniels may be the best option to stack with as he has averaged over eight targets and 98 air yards per game over their past three contests. If Harris is able to start, Daniels is a secondary option to look at in lineups. Outside of stacks, Edmonton’s top trio are overpriced given their opportunity.

Montreal’s top trio of receivers will be in tough versus a Winnipeg secondary that is allowing the third-fewest yards per target (7.47) and the second-fewest receiving TDs per target this season. All of Bray, Posey, and Lewis have 100 yards and a TD upside – as Lewis showed in Week 14 versus Saskatchewan – but it will difficult to reach their ceiling versus the Bombers, especially with Chris Matthews slowly eroding their market share of targets. Bray had the added bonus of return yards as the main punt returner versus the Riders, but that could certainly change in Week 15. The mid-tier salaries on Bray and Posey make them worthy of consideration but Lewis’s salary, now over $8K, makes him a difficult spend to justify.

DEFENCE

BC Lions, $3,200

Ottawa Redblacks, $3,200

Hamilton Tiger-Cats, $3,990

The Lions were clearly the defence to have in Week 14 with the lowest salary and highest production. Week 15 may be a little more hopeful for the Redblacks, as they expect to see Sinopoli and Holley return to the active lineup. That said, any offence led by Jon Jennings at QB is worth picking on with an opposing defence, as he has averaged nearly two turnovers per game in his past three starts. BC is again the top option on defence in Week 15.

The Redblacks were unable to sack Mike Reilly even once in Week 14 despite BC allowing four sacks per game to that point. They were able to salvage their Fantasy production through three forced turnovers and a safety, though. If they are able to create more pressure on Reilly in Week 15 though, they could be a low owned option.

The best strategy for picking a Fantasy defence is often just picking on the weakest QBs on the slate and Logan Kilgore, set to make his first start for the Eskimos, makes the Hamilton defence a solid option. The TiCats are third in the league in sacks (33) and forced turnovers (30) and will do everything they can to give Kilgore and unwelcome start to his time as the Eskimos signal-caller.

STACKS

Bo Levi Mitchell > Eric Rogers

Begelton has missed the first few days of practice for the Stampeders this week and if he’s out Rogers is nearly a lock in Fantasy lineups versus Toronto.

Mike Reilly > Bryan Burnham

Those rolling out Reilly for a second straight week shouldn’t get distracted by TDs for Durant and Carter in Week 14. Burnham is the stacking partner to have.

Week 15 Projections

QUARTERBACKS

Name Position Salary Team Opp Projection Points Per Dollar Pass Attempts Rush Carries
Chris STREVELER QB $7,575.00 WPG MTL 26.83 3.54 22.8 12.4
Bo Levi MITCHELL QB $9,321.00 CGY TOR 23.38 2.51 36.8 0.7
Vernon ADAMS JR QB $10,605.00 MTL WPG 23.26 2.19 30.5 6.9
Mcleod BETHEL-THOMPSON QB $10,288.00 TOR CGY 21.17 2.06 39.8 1.9
Mike REILLY QB $9,584.00 BC OTT 17.85 1.86 33.2 4.1
Dane EVANS QB $6,559.00 HAM EDM 17.74 2.71 32.4 3.3
Logan KILGORE QB $5,000.00 EDM HAM 14.76 2.95 38.4 4
Jonathon JENNINGS QB $5,482.00 OTT BC 14.2 2.59 34.9 3.9
Nick ARBUCKLE QB $6,543.00 CGY TOR 2.49 0.38 0 1.5
James FRANKLIN QB $5,454.00 TOR CGY 1.04 0.19 0 1.5

RUNNING BACKS

Name Position Salary Team Opp Projection Points Per Dollar Rush Carries Receiving Targets Punt Returns Kick Returns
Andrew HARRIS RB $10,845.00 WPG MTL 21.04 1.94 15.1 4.2
John WHITE RB $6,667.00 BC OTT 19.49 2.92 14.4 3
CJ GABLE RB $8,695.00 EDM HAM 16.18 1.86 15.6 4.5
William STANBACK RB $7,643.00 MTL WPG 15.21 1.99 13.1 1.8
James WILDER JR RB $9,921.00 TOR CGY 13.68 1.38 7 6
Ka’Deem CAREY RB $5,371.00 CGY TOR 13.29 2.47 10.5 3.4 0 0
Terry WILLIAMS RB $4,706.00 CGY TOR 12.6 2.68 3.9 1.4 5 3
Mossis MADU RB $6,700.00 OTT BC 11.5 1.72 12.1 6.5
Chris RAINEY RB $5,742.00 TOR CGY 8.78 1.53 4 1.9 5 3
Jackson BENNETT RB $3,500.00 HAM EDM 6.43 1.84 6 2
Anthony COOMBS RB $3,546.00 HAM EDM 6.38 1.8 4.9 2.8
Christion JONES RB $3,127.00 EDM HAM 6.02 1.92 0 1 5 3
Jeremiah JOHNSON RB $5,938.00 MTL WPG 5.23 0.88 2.3 2.1
Shaquille MURRAY-LAWRENCE RB $2,500.00 MTL WPG 3.36 1.34 0 0 3
Wayne MOORE RB $2,500.00 BC OTT 3.08 1.23 1.3 1.3
Brendan GILLANDERS RB $2,500.00 OTT BC 0.77 0.31 1 0.4

RECEIVERS

Name Position Salary Team Opp Projection Points Per Dollar Rush Carries Receiving Targets Punt Returns Kick Returns
Brandon BANKS WR $12,537.00 HAM EDM 19.63 1.57 1 9.6 0
Bralon ADDISON WR $9,188.00 HAM EDM 18.69 2.03 3 8.3
Eric ROGERS WR $8,335.00 CGY TOR 18.4 2.21 0 7.5
Bryan BURNHAM WR $9,684.00 BC OTT 17.72 1.83 0 8.7
Derel WALKER WR $9,396.00 TOR CGY 15.83 1.69 0.3 8.2
Greg ELLINGSON WR $8,523.00 EDM HAM 14.08 1.65 0 8.2
DaVaris DANIELS WR $8,108.00 EDM HAM 13.54 1.67 0 8.1
Lemar DURANT WR $5,421.00 BC OTT 12.64 2.33 0 6.3
Ricky COLLINS WR $6,861.00 EDM HAM 12.49 1.82 0.2 7.2
Quan BRAY WR $4,490.00 MTL WPG 12.05 2.68 0.11 5.3 5
Eugene LEWIS WR $8,558.00 MTL WPG 11.93 1.39 0 6.8
S.J. GREEN WR $7,703.00 TOR CGY 11.62 1.51 0.09 8.4
Dominique RHYMES WR $7,432.00 OTT BC 11.35 1.53 0 6.8
Armanti EDWARDS WR $6,520.00 TOR CGY 11.11 1.7 0.2 6
Rodney SMITH WR $5,247.00 TOR CGY 10.94 2.08 0 6.2
DeVier POSEY WR $6,848.00 MTL WPG 10.45 1.53 0 7.5
Lucky WHITEHEAD WR $3,805.00 WPG MTL 10.08 2.65 0.9 3.9 0 1
Darvin ADAMS WR $6,529.00 WPG MTL 9.72 1.49 0 4.3
Brad SINOPOLI WR $7,023.00 OTT BC 8.92 1.27 0 6.8
Jaelon ACKLIN WR $3,976.00 HAM EDM 8.75 2.2 0 4
Nic DEMSKI WR $4,330.00 WPG MTL 8.61 1.99 1.7 3.3
RJ HARRIS WR $5,371.00 OTT BC 8.39 1.56 0.1 6.4
Duron CARTER WR $3,538.00 BC OTT 8.12 2.29 0 6.9
Janarion GRANT WR $2,500.00 WPG MTL 7.91 3.16 0 0 5 3
Josh HUFF WR $2,500.00 CGY TOR 7.74 3.1 0 5.5 0 0
Richard SINDANI WR $2,500.00 CGY TOR 7.48 2.99 0 3.5
Natey ADJEI WR $3,706.00 EDM HAM 7.44 2.01 0 4.6
Kenny LAWLER WR $2,500.00 WPG MTL 6.99 2.8 0 3.7
Jevon COTTOY WR $2,521.00 BC OTT 6.81 2.7 0 3.6
Tevaun SMITH WR $3,522.00 EDM HAM 6.68 1.9 0 4.5
Hergy MAYALA WR $2,500.00 CGY TOR 6.2 2.48 0 3.4
Marcus TUCKER WR $2,558.00 HAM EDM 6.12 2.39 0 3.7
Jake WIENEKE WR $2,999.00 MTL WPG 6.05 2.02 0 3
Drew WOLITARSKY WR $3,187.00 WPG MTL 5.88 1.85 0 3.4
Ryan LANKFORD WR $4,045.00 BC OTT 5.67 1.4 0 0 5 3
Caleb HOLLEY WR $3,315.00 OTT BC 5.57 1.68 0 5
Shaquille JOHNSON WR $2,500.00 BC OTT 5.33 2.13 0 3.4
Chris MATTHEWS WR $2,925.00 MTL WPG 5.06 1.73 0 3.3
Jimmy RALPH WR $2,681.00 TOR CGY 4.84 1.8 0 3.1
Michael KLUKAS WR $2,500.00 CGY TOR 4.59 1.84 0.22 3.2
Nathaniel BEHAR WR $2,500.00 OTT BC 3.23 1.29 0 3
Mike JONES WR $3,097.00 HAM EDM 2.48 0.8 0 2
Felix FAUBERT-LUSSIER WR $2,500.00 MTL WPG 0.8 0.32 0 0.7