Patrick Daugherty

The Morning After

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Justin Blackmon's Breakout

Monday, October 14, 2013

There are many striking aspects to Justin Blackmon’s scorching-hot start, but one stat I can’t get past? His 326 yards receiving through two games are 97 more than Dwayne Bowe has through six games. Yes, that means exactly nothing. We’re comparing apples and oranges, and doing so devoid of any meaningful context. On the one hand, we have a hungry second-year pro coming off an embarrassing four-game suspension catching a whole lot of passes for a team going nowhere fast. On the other, a $56 million veteran drawing fewer targets than his running back and not even bothering to publicly complain, lest he derail the surprising 6-0 train he finds himself on.

But there is one universal fantasy truth that can be gleaned: All the August preparation in the world can’t prepare you for the circumstances that will unfold once the fur begins to fly. Bowe was the No. 45 pick by ADP this season, Blackmon 111. Bowe was so high because he was the only legitimate receiver on a team being inherited by one of the league’s most pass-happy coaches. Blackmon was so low because he was the No. 2 threat for a club guided by the league’s worst quarterback, and was missing the first four games of the season.

And yet, here we are. The circumstances — Blackmon’s quarterback, Andy Reid’s offensive philosophy, to name two — have changed, and Blackmon has 3.7 more fantasy points than Bowe despite playing 66 percent fewer games. It’s just a reminder to be adaptable, and that what you knew in August may have been right then, but couldn’t be more wrong now. Adjust your lineups accordingly.  

Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a one-week $300,000 Fantasy Football league for Week 7. It's $25 to join and first prize is $25,000. Starts Sunday at 1pm ET. Here's the link.

Game Balls

Justin Blackmon

Let’s delve a little deeper into Blackmon’s hot start. His 14 catches Sunday were the most by any receiver in a single-game this season. The same goes for his 20 targets. Despite missing four of Jacksonville’s first six games, he’s already 46th in the league in receiving yards. Going back to last season, he’s drawn at least 11 targets in five of his past six starts. Every one of those games was started by Chad Henne. Instead of the next Jacksonville draft bust, Blackmon is looking like a young Anquan Boldin.

Nick Foles

Making his first start of the season — and first for Chip Kelly, whose offense is a littlebit different than Andy Reid’s — Foles went on the road and carved up Darrelle Revis and the Bucs. Foles finished his day 22-of-31 for 296 yards, three touchdowns and zero turnovers. He was so good that Kelly failed to endorse Michael Vick as his starting quarterback for Week 7 afterward. Repetitive accuracy is Kelly’s most desired trait in a quarterback. It’s what Foles has shown the past 1.5 weeks, and what Vick has never been known for. Buckle up for your first real quarterback controversy of the season.      

Arian Foster

On a day where none of his teammates did their jobs, Foster did his, stinging the Rams’ woeful run defense for 141 yards on only 20 carries. For good measure, he added four catches for 57 yards. Now up to 4.53 yards per carry, Foster has piled up 487 yards from scrimmage over his past three games, and shown he can still be a rock for a team without a direction. With the Texans’ passing game cooked, Foster could rack up more touches than any player in football from here on out.  


1. Remember when the Bills didn’t sign Josh Freeman? Remember when the Vikings did?

2. Does outlasting Thad Lewis’ Bills in overtime mean the Bengals are ready to lose another road Wild Card game?

3. What happens when Ryan Fitzpatrick throws a ball as hard and far as he can? This.

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Patrick Daugherty is a football and baseball writer for He can be found on Twitter .
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