by Nick Ercolano
August 14, 2019
Stacking is an interesting concept for fantasy football. Stacking means drafting two players on the same team. How did I decide these guys? Well, I'm looking at, obviously, two players that mesh well together, players on great offenses, players that I think you can both get at value - so I'm not just naming the best QB and best WR four times over again, that helps no one. I'm really looking at where guys are going in drafts and are it reasonable to take them together.
I will say this - I'm not totally opposed to stacking players on the same team that aren't intertwined with each other - like two WRs, or a WR and an RB - obviously, that limits upside on a weekly basis .... but if you do, it has to be on an offense you know is going to be very good to help minimize risk. For example, last year in a draft I drafted David Johnson second or third overall and when my fifth-round pick came around I was debating between Larry Fitz and another receiver. Beside the point, it would've been a bad pick taking Fitz looking back, but I decided not to take Fitz because I already owned DJ and it's not like we thought the Arizona offense was going to be great.
So, I get asked a lot, is it okay if I take Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Can I take Odell Beckham and then Nick Chubb? Yes, those offenses are QB'd be a great passer, in an offense that should be high-scoring. What I will say, though, is yes I'm okay with those specific pairs, but I don't target that. If I'm going to take two guys on the same team whose work eats into each other - I will make sure I get one at a good value and don't reach on them. The other thing is, like people talk about how they're stealing work from one another - that's true in a sense, but if one of them is doing well in a game, that probably means the offense is moving smoothly which benefits the other one. Like if OBJ is 6-82 through a quarter and a half, he's moving the shit out of the chains, probably in scoring opportunity which is great for Nick Chubb. So, yes, it caps monopoly on the yardage share you can have on a given week, but I'd argue that it's not anywhere near as much as people like to assume.
We're doing a draft guide giveaway every week now - last week's winner was
For this week's draft guide giveaway question - which stack would you prefer:
Jameis & O.J.
Kirk & Diggs
or Cam & D.J. Moore
And why - drop that down below.
Let's get into some staxxxx.
We did a bestball breakdown earlier this summer and I'm pretty sure like 35% of championship teams had a Kelce/Mahomes stack, no surprise here. Mahomes was a late-round QB pick who finished as the QB1, Kelce was a 3rd/4th round pick who finished as TE1 despite someone setting the record for most TE receiving yards in a season, and someone else setting the record for most TE receptions in a season. That's insane when you stop to think about it. And it's not like his 10 receiving touchdowns were a crazy outlier.
Between the two of them, you got, on average over 42 fantasy points per game - with half ppr, standard QB scoring. They scored you over 60 points combined 3 separate times.
Both of these guys project to be the number one fantasy scorer at their position again in 2019 and I know we almost never see these type of things repeat, but I'd be way more surprised if it didn't happen then if it did.
What I like about this stack is where you can get them - particularly if you're picking at the back-end of the 1st round. Kelce usually falls to around the 2.02-2.04. With Mahomes, I'm not someone this year advocating to take him typically, because I just don't want to draft QBs early, but if you're at the end of the first round, that means you're at the end of the 3rd round, early 4th - and I always said that the 4th was the earliest I'd take Mahomes, but the stack would make me think twice about grabbing him in the 3rd, or getting risky and waiting for the 4th.
This offense is going to be dynamite, and this pairing is, by itself going to give you a rock-solid baseline floor. But on those boom weeks, they automatically win you your week. There's no other duo that provided you 3 separate games of 60+ points last year. Why Kelce over Hill? One, the positional advantage obviously is much bigger at TE than it is at WR, so you know a TE off the board that no one else can have but Kelce is the more reliable, consistent option. I love Tyreek, but the guy was truly boom or bust. Hill scored fewer than 12 fantasy points in 8-of-16 games last year - that's not exactly what you want from your first/2nd round pick. Kelce is also the target leader on this team, he is the number one option. Just because he has the TE sign next to his name doesn't mean he's less valuable than a WR, he's more.
The two Chiefs line up well as back 1st, early 2nd, plus back 3rd, early 4th round picks.
I love this stack. Reports out of camp have not stopped flowing about how good these two look together.
And we already know that historically, D-Jax has made every single QB he's played with much better statistically. He spreads the entire defense out, and for good reason. He has the most 60+ yard receiving touchdowns of all time (24). For the 3rd time in 5 years, Jackson led the league in yards per reception at 18.9.
We know Wentz has a really strong arm, that he wasn't able to put on display much last year. Alshon was banged up, they didn't have a downfield WR of consequence. However, his overall accuracy rating was 2nd in the NFL. Looking back at 2017, though, Wentz was great in the deep game. He threw 10 touchdowns on deep attempts, 3rd highest in the NFL, with 4 drops, threw it deep on 14.8% of his throws - 5th highest rate in the NFL and his 44.6% adjusted comp. percentage on deep balls was top-8, averaging over 5 deep passes/game. Only Russell Wilson, Big Ben and DeShone Kizer (lol) attempted more deep balls/game than Wentz.
His Catchable Target Rate per PlayerProfiler.com ranked 94th (68.3%) among NFL WRs. His Target Accuracy also ranked 94th. The year prior, 2017, Jackson’s catchable target rate was even worse – 67.8%.
Will things be better in Philly for D-Jax? Is Carson Wentz a more accurate thrower than Jameis Winston? In 2018, Like I said, Wentz had the 2nd highest Accuracy Rating among all NFL QBs. The Eagles QB had the 7th highest (74.2%) True Completion Percentage (accounts for throwaways and dropped passes) among NFL QBs and his 4.4 air yards per attempt (^^^^ DJAX) ranked 9th among NFL QBs. This came a year after averaging the 5th most air yards/attempt (4.7) in the NFL.
Obviously, D-Jax doesn't give you a weekly floor like a Kelce does, but the upside here weekly is huge. They connect on one 60-yard TD, you're looking at almost 20 fantasy points on one fucking play. And I would argue that the floor is actually not terrible, because D-Jax isn't a one-trick pony, but Wentz has a great floor, in a great offense, and D-Jax being in your lineup, means he's obviously playing that week which spreads the defense out tremendously and there's a very good chance Wentz has a great game because of that, regardless of whether or not Jackosn does.
The Eagles also have a great offensive line, which opens up time for Jackson to get open downfield.
How many stacks can you get like this that absolutely bust a fantasy game wide open, in the 9th/10th round, or the 10th/11th round of drafts - Per FFPC ADP - DJax is still going after pick 135 which is insane, and Wentz is the QB10 off the board, also insane.
I absolutely love both of these guys where they are going in drafts. Cooks is a 4th rounder Woods is very late in the 4th, sometimes early 5th rounder. I get asked if it's okay to stack to LAR WRs this year. Yes, as long as their names ar Woods and Brandin Cooks.
Cooks gives you a blend of high upside with Woods ridiculous consistency. It's like owning Tyreek Hill and Davante Adams light, for 2/3 rounds later. This Rams offense was the 2nd highest-scoring team in the league last year, 3rd highest in the league the year before.
A huge part of this is the belief that Cooper Kupp is not at 100% at least until mid-way through the season. It's something I've been talking about a lot this summer - these players coming off of major surgery like Kupp's torn ACL, you want them two years removed, not coming back. Maybe if it occurred in the preseason, maybe September, but it happened in Week 11. And listen, I understand all the reports are that he's fully ready to go at practice, training camp whatever, but those people aren't doctors. We've heard Dr. Morse on here saying the same thing, 2 years, not this year. We also have other doctors echoing their concerns:
Look at the skill players who tore their ACLs during the 2017 season and how did they do last year? Dalvin Cook, in Week 4reinjured and not good until later in the season after a hamstring pull. Allen Robinson, shit last year. Cameron Meredith, obviously nothing. Julian Edelman came back strong, but his ACL tear came in August, so before the season even started and had even more time to rest because he was suspended to start the year. And one final interesting note from Evan Silva, friend of the pod:
So, I echo - beat reporters who graduated from college with a bachelors in journalism are not qualified to rule a player 8 months removed from an ACL tear (9-12 month full recovery timetable) 100%. Please do not dismiss what I just said.
So, with the belief that we're not getting a 100% Kupp, nor a 100% Todd Gurley with the arthritis, it's going to be the Woods and Cooks show in LA in 2019, under a QB that just threw for nearly 4,700 passing yards, 4th highest total in the NFL. Goff also threw 32 TDs, tied for 6th most in the NFL - that was while Todd Gurley led the NFL with 64 RZ carries, 36 10zone carries and 18 GL carries. Imagine if they don't run the ball every single time they're near the EZ.
Last year Woods was the WR10, Cooks the WR12. In the games Kupp played - Weeks 1-6, Weeks 9 and 10:
A less-than-100% Kupp will only make these numbers better for the other two.
The way I see it - Cooks has had an unbelievable, and under-appreciated career before turning 26 - like he's not at all at his prime. This is a high-powered offense, and these two are in a spot with a GREAT chance to repeat what they did last year, if not build on it - the WR10 and WR12, that you can get in the 4th/5th round. A contradictory approach that I love.
- Prior to Keke dying on Thursday night, I would've been all-in on a Watson/Keke stack.
- I don't hate the Thielen/Diggs stack, but I'm not completely sold on this offense with Stefanski there now, probably going more run-heavy. There floors are intact but I think there's a very good chance these two have extremely similar EOS statlines as Cooks and Woods that you can get at the 4/5 turn instead of the 3/4.
August 14, 2019
Winston/Howard because of ADP. OJ at 5.08. Winston the 10.5. Able to draft quality lineup around them in first 4 rounds. Plus TB gonna throw. #keepcrackin
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