Fantasy Draft News September 2nd 2015
Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden announced his starting quarterback for week 1 and it is Kirk Cousins. The future for Robert Griffin III is in doubt as he is owed 16 ½ million dollars next season and may be cut to avoid paying that high salary. Should Griffin III get traded it is doubtful he will be in a starting role. Fantasy owners were burned last year by selecting Cousins on their rosters. He saw action in six games in 2014 and threw 10 touchdowns but had 9 interceptions. Washington was 2-4 in games Cousins played in 2014. There was a stretch where the Redskins lost four straight with Kirk Cousins under center.
Buffalo Bills head coach Rex Ryan named his starter as well for week one and its Tyrod Taylor. He beats out Matt Cassel, E.J. Manuel and Matt Simms. Taylor has bounced around the league for five years. He spent most of his years in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens. In mop up roles in 14 regular season games Taylor has hit on 54% of his passes with no touchdowns and two picks. His starting wide receivers are Sammy Watkins and Percy Harvin. Taylor’s mobility gave him an edge over the competition as he may be asked to make plays with his legs if Harvin and Watkins can’t get open.
Jacksonville Jaguars suffered some bad news as their tight end Julius Thomas is considering surgery on his finger. The Pro Bowler could miss up to four weeks of the regular season. He was acquired by Jacksonville as a free agent during the offseason from the Denver Broncos. Thomas put up some good numbers with Peyton Manning throwing him the football. His production would be lower with Blake Bortles passing to him.
The Cleveland Indians have gotten hot and are still in contention for an AL Wildcard spot in the stretch run. The win streak is now six straight and the team is four games back of the Texas Rangers for the final AL Wildcard spot with just 32 games remaining to be played. The pitching has been good for the Indians as the staff has allowed three runs or fewer in seven of their past eight games. Starter Danny Salazar has been outstanding. In the victory at the Blue Jays on Monday the Indians right hander allowed two earned runs and struck out ten batters in seven innings. Salazar has allowed six of his past seven opponent’s two earned runs or less. His strikeout numbers are phenomenal with 172 in 151 1/3rd innings.
The Baltimore Orioles are a team on the skids losers of 10 of their past 11 games after a 6-3 home defeat to the Tampa Bay Rays. The team has fallen well behind in the race for the AL Wildcard at 63-68 to date. Baltimore is having trouble scoring runs and many of the Orioles every day hitters are battling slumps. Making matters worse is that many hitters in the Baltimore lineup have not hit Rays pitching this year.
The LA Angels are now a game under .500 at 65-66 after a loss at Oakland on Monday. They sit 3 ½ games back of the Texas Rangers for the final AL Wildcard spot. The Angels pitching staff has been tagged for 8 runs or greater over their past three games. The team is 2-5 on this road trip. Mike Trout is happy to see the month of August come to an end as the center fielder is trapped in a .227 hitting slump with only one home run.
In a marathon game at Dodger Stadium LA was able to win Game 1 of this key series 5-4. They were able to rally from a 3-1 deficit as Adrian Gonzalez had a two run home run to tie the game at 3-3. He got the game winning hit in the 14th for LA for a three RBI night. Both teams went deep into their bullpens as San Francisco used nine pitchers on Monday and for LA seven pitchers took the mound. Great pitching matchup on Tuesday as Zach Greinke faces off with Giants left hander Madison Bumgarner.