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NFL Combine Starts Now! Here Is Your NFL/Fantasy News for Mar. 1
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NFL Combine Starts Now! Here Is Your NFL/Fantasy News for Mar. 1

How short *is* Bryce Young? Are 40 times meaningless? And why do Niners fans want to force teams to carry an emergency quarterback?

What to Watch for at the NFL Combine

Defensive Linemen / Linebackers - March 2nd

Defensive Backs - March 3rd

Quarterbacks / Wide Receivers / Tight Ends - March 4th

Running Backs / Offensive Linemen - March 5th

Will 190-Pound Bryce Young Measure Up?

Todd McShay reports Alabama QB Bryce Young, who is listed at 6-foot-nothing, is actually shorter than 5-11. We will see for sure when he is measured at the Combine on March 4.

His weight is listed at 194, which, again, is likely heavier than he actually is. For weight measures, an athlete can pump them up by eating and drinking days and hours ahead. (Back when I wrestled in high school, we would go the other way, piss to try to lose weight.)

Kyler Murray is the shortest starting QB in the NFL at 5-10 and weighs 207. Bryce looks like he is as tall as Kyler at most.

Russell Wilson also had a successful career being under 6 feet tall—but it changed how he played the game. Jalen Hurts, Tua Tagovailoa, Brock Purdy, Tyler Huntley, and Baker Mayfield are all only 6-1.

RB 40 Times? No! These Are the Measures That Mean Good Fantasy Performance.

According to a 2019 paper by Christopher D. Morgan, Caroll Rodriguez, Korey MacVittie, Robert Slater, and Daniel W. Engels published in the SMU Data Science Review, most measurements taking at the NFL Scouting Combine have little correlation with NFL production.

For running backs, the vertical jump and 20-yard shuttle have the best F-score correlating results with production. The 40-yard dash does not.

For wide receivers, bench press reps and 40 times are the best predictors. But even 40 times for WRs are not as closely correlated with production as draft order is.

My Latest Writing

A couple of articles I have written recently:

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2023 First Round Mock Draft - RotoBaller
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Should We Hate Daniel Jones For Trying To Get Paid?
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The March 1st Movement and Korea's Long Fight for Independence - US-Korea Policy Project

Yes, I also have a Substack about the foreign policy of the US and Korea. See it here:

In fact, if you are a premium subscriber to Mitch’s Picks, I offer 50% off when subscribing to the US-Korea Policy Project.

Get 10% off for 1 year

Should Teams Have 3 Active QBs in Games?

New rules are being proposed at the NFL offseason meetings. Some of these proposals are clearly linked to things that happened in playoff games. One is to ban players from pushing a QB forward on a sneak. Another is a proposal to add an extra player—a mandatory emergency QB—to active rosters for playoff games.

San Francisco 49ers fans are pushing what they call a “49ers Playoff Game Rule,” even though the rule wouldn’t help them any more than it would help any other team.

For the average player, injuries are randomly-distributed occurrences. So there is no reason to believe that the 49ers will be at a higher risk of having their QBs knocked out of the game next year.

The 49ers fans just have trauma from seeing so many injuries last season. Maybe Jimmy Garoppolo is more injury-prone than some players, but Jimmy G isn’t returning to San Fran. If anything, this rule would help the Miami Dolphins by giving them an extra QB for when Tua’s head gets knocked into the ground.

If teams think they need a third quarterback for game day, they don’t need a rule change. All they have to do is activate a third quarterback on game day. NFL teams have 48 players dress for each game.

To be clear, this rule does not help the 49ers, and Eagles fans should not reflexively oppose the proposal as if it is an affront to them. And it certainly would have been more exciting from a neutral fan’s perspective to see a shitty fifth-string QB who was at least physically capable of throwing the football come in after the Niners’ fourth-string QB went down. It wouldn’t have changed the outcome of the game. The NFL did have mandatory emergency QBs in place up until 2011.

My wacky alternative suggestion: Maybe the NFL should carry a stable of emergency QBs and assign one to each game? Third- and fourth-string QBs already have no allegiance to a team and no chemistry with their players. Most of them are raised up from practice squads, and some of them change teams/practice squads multiple times during a season. If both QBs for a team go down in-game, they wouldn’t play better or worse for one team; they’d play for their own future.

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Does Leonard Fournette Have Any Fantasy Value on a New Team?

Chuck Bass is optimistic about Fournette’s prospects for 2023. I am not so much. The Bucs RB, who would have been due $8.5 million this year and next year, is going to be cut. The Bucs are rebuilding, they had rookie Rachaad White take over as the RB1 at the end of last season, and Fournette looked diminished last season.

Lenny arrived in camp reportedly overweight. He averaged 3.5 yards per attempt, and he was moving like an old man. There was good use for him in the passing game. Even after he went to the second team, he caught 6+ passes in three of his last six games. I just wonder if there are any teams that will use him as much in the passing game as Tampa Bay did.

The Eagles Should Let Miles Sanders Go

Above average running backs come and go. The Eagles running game is successful because of its scheme, its offensive line, and Jalen Hurts at QB. They had two RBs—Sanders and Ken Gainwell—average 4.5+ yards per carry and Boston Scott did 4.0. They have typically had multiple backs getting many carries and producing in recent years (Sanders missed five games each in 2020 and 2021 and the Eagles were still relatively effective without him). Now Sanders is on track to be a free agent, and, for teams with a scheme-based running game, paying up for an RB is expensive and unnecessary. There are going to be capable rookie RBs available in the first three rounds of the draft Philadelphia could plug in.

Early IDP First Round Picks and ADPs

I joined an IDP best ball league sponsored and run by The IDP Show .

The first round went like this:

  1. Micah Parsons

  2. Nick Bosa

  3. TJ Watt

  4. Myles Garret

  5. Maxx Crosby

  6. Christian Wilkins

  7. Foyesade Oluokun

  8. Roquan Smith

  9. Nick Bolton

  10. Kayvon Thibodeaux

  11. Haason Reddick (My Pick)

  12. Devin White

So you have a little idea of what people are thinking when it comes to IDP value. The draft is 31 rounds, and we’re doing about two rounds a day (with an 8-hour timer).

Who would you have picked? Comment!

Which Team Should I Do A Mock Draft For?

If I do a full 7-round mock draft for an NFL team next week, what team do you want to see me pick? Vote your preference!

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Mitch's NFL Picks
Mitch's Picks Podcast
Mitch Blatt is author of RotoBaller's 2022 Monday Night Football betting column and IDP Waiver Wire column. He offers his weekly NFL picks for free, indepth insights and analytics on fantasy football, and fun opinions.
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