Now that it’s 2017 and the fantasy football season is over (and my 1st place victory of the inaugural Frontline Fantasy Football league is finally official) I thought I’d take a look back at the 2016 regular season, and hand out some awards to the most deserving players in the final Fantasy Hangover.
MVP: David Johnson
This one is a no-brainer. Even though for some reason he isn’t being considered for league MVP, David Johnson has been the fantasy football MVP this year. He finished as the RB1 overall, and his lowest scoring week was this past Sunday, and that’s only because he suffered a nasty injury in the first quarter, which has been ruled as a MCL sprain.
He ended the season with 1,239 rushing yards, 879 receiving yards, and 20 total touchdowns. That is insane. Compared to Ezekiel Elliott, Johnson has more total yards and more touchdowns, and Johnson is doing all of that with a less-talented offensive line. Someone give Johnson the MVP trophy already.
Most Improved: Melvin Gordon
If you would’ve told me at the beginning of the season that Melvin Gordon would be a legitimate RB1 this season and finish as RB8 overall, I would’ve laughed in your face. This year, Gordon rushed for 997 yards and had 12 total touchdowns. Last year, he had 641 rushing yards and 0 touchdowns. Talk about an improvement.
Mr. Consistent: Le’Veon Bell
Even though he was suspended the first three games of the season, Le’Veon Bell was on one this year. He finished as the RB4 in fantasy, and didn’t even play Week 17. From Week 4 to Week 16, Bell had 1,268 rushing yards, 616 receiving yards, and nine total touchdowns. His lowest fantasy output was six points in Week 9 against the Ravens, and other than that he finished with double-digit fantasy points every week. That’s consistency at its best. I also can’t write about Bell without mentioning his 47 fantasy point game in Week 14, the most ever for a running back this year.
Most iconic RB duo: Devonta Freeman & Tevin Coleman
When you combine their stats, they had 1,599 rushing yards, 883 receiving yards, and 24 total touchdowns. Name a more iconic RB duo this year. I’ll wait.
Biggest Disappointment: Todd Gurley & Cam Newton
New year, different me. Neither of these two players lived up to their expectations, and half the time fantasy owners didn’t even start them. Hopefully next season they can turn it around.
Most Frustrating: DeAndre Hopkins
The difference between last season and this season is pretty big for DeAndre Hopkins. Last year, he had 1,521 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns. This year, he had 954 receiving yards and only four touchdowns. That’s frustrating, especially if he was your first-round pick.
Mr. Inconsistent: Allen Robinson
With only five games of double-digit fantasy points this year, Allen Robinson has been an inconsistent bust. Part of that is due to Blake Bortles, but Robinson is also to blame. By the end of the season he was a free agent in all four of my leagues. Ouch.
Straight Outta Nowhere: Michael Thomas, Jay Ajayi, & Dak Prescott
These three players came out of nowhere this year. Jay Ajayi was around, but he wasn’t even worthy of a roster spot before his breakout game. Michael Thomas wasn’t drafted in most leagues, but finished as WR9. And no one guessed the impact that Dak Prescott would make this year. All three of these players will be prime fantasy candidates next year, and I’m excited to see what they will do.
Rookie of the Year: Ezekiel Elliott
Sorry, Dak. Elliott wins rookie of the year for me with 1,631 rushing yards, 363 receiving yards, and 16 total touchdowns.
Highest Scoring Fantasy Player: Aaron Rodgers
Yes, this is an award. Rodgers averaged 22.8 points per game, and had seven games with 25+ fantasy points. Runner up: Matt Ryan.
The Underappreciated: T.Y. Hilton, Davante Adams, & LeSean McCoy
These three have proven to be the most underappreciated in my opinion. T.Y. Hilton led the NFL with 1,448 receiving yards. Davante Adams proved himself as a WR2 with four 100+ yard games and 12 total touchdowns, and finished the season as WR7. LeSean McCoy finished as RB3, and had 1,267 rushing yards, 356 receiving yards, and 14 total touchdowns.
Comeback Game Strong: DeMarco Murray & Jordy Nelson
After a terrible season last year on the Eagles, DeMarco Murray returned in grand form, proving that it was Chip Kelly’s fault that he sucked. Jordy Nelson’s return was another question mark going in to the season, but he came back in huge way, finishing as WR1 overall.
Flying Under the Radar: Jordan Howard
Another rookie that came out of nowhere this year, Jordan Howard had an incredible season. He broke the Bears’ rookie rushing record (previously held by Matt Forte) and showed that he is not a fluke. Yet, he is still flying under the radar, probably because he’s on a bad team. That never stopped Forte from going off, and I think Howard is going to keep his hot streak going next year. Don’t sleep on Howard.
Good, Not Great: Lamar Miller & Amari Cooper
These two had such potential, but ultimately didn’t meet expectations. I could’ve put these two in the inconsistent category, too, but they deserved a better award then that.
Participation Award: Adrian Peterson & Jamaal Charles
Thanks for trying. Maybe next year, if you’re ever the same (insert tear emoji).
Most Headaches: Jordan Reed, Rob Gronkowski, and Latavius Murray
Reed had actual headache problems, Gronk was always hurt, and Murray went from workhorse to RBBC, then back to workhorse, and then back to RBBC again. Poor Murray.
Devin Hester Copycat: Tyreek Hill
Why didn’t the Bears use Devin Hester like the Chiefs are using Tyreek Hill? Hill has been mighty impressive the past month, and he’s getting a freaky-fast touchdown every single week. He’s a punt returner, wide receiver, and running back all-in-one, and he’s dangerous.
Most Entertaining: Odell Beckham, Jr. & Mike Evans
Some of the coolest highlights I’ve seen this year have been from OBJ and Mike Evans. They make catching footballs look easy, and they deserve all the praise.
Most Easily Forgotten: Brandon Marshall
Brandon who? He was runner up for biggest disappointment of the year, because he was basically non-existent the second half of the season. Sad day.
100 to 0 Real Quick: Matt Forte & Kelvin Benjamin
They started off so strong, but ended so badly (especially Forte).
0 to 100 Real Quick: Bilal Powell
Started as the backup to Forte, now he’s #1. Powell has proven that he’s the best running back on the Jets right now.
0 to 100, then 100 to 0: Thomas Rawls
Thomas Rawls has given fantasy owners many headaches, as his injuries, one great game, and then terrible performances has taken everyone on a wild ride that they just want to get off of.
Most Confusing Team: New Orleans Saints & Oakland Raiders
Cooks. Ingram. Hightower. Murray. Cooper. Crabtree. How will they do this week? Nobody knows.
Worst Quarterback: Brock Osweiler
What else is there to say?
Most Surprising Benching: Tony Romo
RIP Romo. May you find peace on a different team.
Best Boot: Justin Tucker
If there is a god of NFL kickers, then Justin Tucker would be his son. May your boot never fail!
That’s going to do it for the first year of the Fantasy Hangover. Thanks for reading and sticking around, it means a lot! See you in the fall. Stay woke.