Articles by Chris Liss

Chris Liss is RotoWire's Managing Editor and Host of RotoWire Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio.

10 Sleepers No One Seems To Want

These players are all virtually free in most 12 team leagues. When you’re out of ideas, grab one of them.

Mike Wallace, WR, BAL – Steve Smith is 37 and coming off a double Achilles rupture, Breshard Perriman has a partially torn ACL and might not be ready for the start of the year. That leaves Kamar Aiken (a player who got targets mostly because there was no one else left last year) and Wallace who has scored eight or more TDs four times in his career. Wallace is still one of the fastest receivers in the league, and if anyone has the arm to get him the ball down field, it’s Joe Flacco.

NFFC Beat Chris Liss 2

On Monday, August 15th, I drafted my second “Beat Chris Liss” NFFC $100K grand prize league. (Here’s the link to the first.) We start 1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR, 1-FLEX, 1-TE, 1-K -1 and 1-D with 10 bench spots, It’s PPR scoring and third-round reversal, i.e., the 12th team to pick in the first round picks first in both the second and third rounds and last in the fourth. I had the ninth pick.

Here are the results.

A Best Ball Strategy

I’m relatively new to MFLs, the My Fantasy League best-ball format where you draft 20 players, knowing you’ll start 1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR, 1-FLEX, 1-TE and 1-D each week. It’s “best ball” because you don’t set your lineup (or make any moves) – the software just takes your highest possible scoring lineup each week. The other 11 players remain on your bench. It’s also PPR scoring.

How I Dominated the RotoWire Steak League Auction

Last year, I titled my piece: “How I Botched the RotoWire Steak League Auction,” and that team finished with by far the most points in the league. So maybe my assessment doesn’t mean much. But I’m happy with how things shook out this year, the details of which I’ll get into below.

This season, the league was only 14, rather than 16 teams (actually it’s now two 14-team leagues with the winners of each meeting in the final Week 17), but everything else is unchanged. It’s a 1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR, 1-TE, 1-K, $200-budget auction, with three IDPs (one defensive lineman, one linebacker and one defensive back.) It’s standard (non-PPR) scoring, and there’s no flex position.

Of course, the key isn’t to win this league (which pays out ~$250) but to avoid buying steaks, i.e., losing the total points side bet which can cost you north of $300. In case you haven’t heard me mention it incessantly on Sirius XM, we’ve done this league since 2000, with half the participants buying steaks in a given year, and I’ve only bought twice, once for myself in 2005 and once for myself and two others (last place) in 2010. Every other season, I’ve eaten for free, putting me about $1500 to the good, steak-wise. (Actually, given I order the full shrimp entree as an appetizer and the surf and turf (market price) as my entree, let’s call it $2000.)

NFFC Beat Chris Liss 1

An hour ago, I completed my first “Beat Chris Liss” NFFC draft. The entry fee is $350, and while there are prizes for winning your league ($1500) and taking second, the big draw is the $125,000 overall prize based on (1) qualifying for the playoffs; and (2) racking up points in Weeks 14-16. To that end, you want a team good enough to contend, but with enough upside to win the whole thing. It’s a 1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR, 1-TE, 1 FLEX, 1-K, 1-D PPR league with 10 bench spots. I had the second pick, but due to third-round reversal, I picked 11th in both Rounds 2 and 3, and second again in Round 4. Here are the results:

Evaluating Pass-Catching Running Backs

We often talk about yards per catch, average depth of target and yards per target for wide receivers, but for running backs the discussion is usually limited to receptions and yards. Part of the reason is running backs aren’t often running deep routes, and virtually all of them catch the vast majority of their targets because they’re standing so close to the quarterback. But we can look at yards per catch which would incorporate two skills: (1) running deeper and more complex routes; and (2) gaining yards after the catch.

Examine Your Assumptions

Usually when I make mistakes on draft day, it’s due to unfounded assumptions, some of which I’m usually not even aware I have. For example, it’s well known Year 2 is often the year wide receivers break out, and accordingly I’m looking to have shares of relatively cheap options like Phillip Dorsett, Devin Funchess and Sammie Coates. But one player I’ve almost entirely overlooked is Nelson Agholor, the Eagles’ first-round pick last year, and like those other three, also headed into Year 2.