Fantasy Football Half-Way Recap: Lamar Jackson and Cooper Kupp Defy Expectations

Kaelib Courtwright, Sports Editor

Fantasy Football season is underway, and many students at NKHS have participated on multiple platforms this year. From veterans to newcomers, most participate for fun and to compete against people they know.

Some owners try not to vary their draft style from draft to draft. Junior Sean Hodgson says that he tried not to change up their draft strategy based on who competitors have taken. He has a very simple philosophy: don’t select players from bad teams. He avoided the Dolphins, Bengals, and especially the Redskins when it came to his drafts, as he saw them as not being potent enough on offense to produce players of value. Junior Carson Zell similarly tried to avoid the Dolphins, and also tried to avoid the Cardinals.

Many fantasy football owners try to avoid certain players every season. These owners are no different. Zell says that he tried to avoid acquiring David Johnson as well as Aaron Rodgers. In addition, Hodgson says that he tried to avoid anybody on the Redskins, as well as JuJu Smith-Schuster. 

Not every player can have perfect predictions every single time. In fact, many players have surprised the owners we’ve interviewed. Zell was particularly surprised by the performance of Dalvin Cook and George Kittle. Hodgson was surprised by the performances of Cooper Kupp, Terry McLaurin, and Lamar Jackson, the latter of which he compared to an elite fantasy quarterback from the past: Michael Vick. He said, “Even though Lamar isn’t the best passer, he adds so much value with his legs. He seems to have 100 yards rushing in every game. I haven’t seen anyone do that since Michael Vick.”

However, these leagues are not just all numbers. Many owners play in leagues with family and friends. Zell says that he plays in a league with his friends, and says that while he does enjoy playing against his friends, he tries not to allow it to affect his relationship with them too heavily.

However, not all owners prefer to play against their friends.  Hodgson says that he plays in a league with strangers, but that it doesn’t impact his enjoyment of fantasy football. To him, fantasy football is fun no matter who the competition is.

As you may have been able to figure out, Hodgson did not pick many Redskins to his team, despite being a fan of them. However, he does expect a Redskins running back to have a strong second half of the season: Adrian Peterson. He says “With Jay Gruden, Adrian Peterson was not utilized as well as he could have been. He was even benched for the first game, despite being healthy. With Jay Gruden being fired, I think Adrian Peterson will perform well in the second half of the season.” Zell believes that Patrick Mahomes will return to his dominant self once he returns from injury, as he believes that Kansas City’s success without him shows their offensive power.