12 October 2023 • by Bryan Oldham
Welcome to a new article on Rival Fantasy: Sizzle or Fizzle. Every week, we’ll look at some fantasy trends and decide if they’ll continue (sizzle) or taper off and change direction (fizzle).
Keep in mind, we aren’t going to inundate you with stats, nor are we going to do deep dives into these topics. We’re keeping things bite-sized on purpose, so you can get the quick hits and make decisions accordingly. Let’s dive in ahead of Week 6.
When you can’t pinpoint a legitimate WR 1 on a team, you’re not off to a good start. There is no alpha wide receiver on this team. I can already hear the outcry of “What about Darren Waller?!”
When Waller plays 17 consecutive games, then we can talk. Until he stays healthy for an extended period of time, or better yet, a full season, you have to be concerned about the Giants’ biggest offseason acquisition.
Combine the lack of an alpha wide out with Daniel Jones’ neck injury and Saquon coming back from an ankle injury, plus an offensive line that leaks like a sieve, the inability to move the ball downfield is comical. Until the Giants address their larger problems, I don’t see them being competitive or righting the ship on offense.
It’s not that I have no faith in this team. They are already a pleasant surprise after 5 weeks, even with a 1-4 start. As I’ve said many times, they are staying in games and Josh Dobbs is protecting the ball.
Even so, 1-4 is a rough record, and the team will have to decide at some point if they are committing to the tank and a potential Caleb Williams pick in 2024, or if they’re going to try and win some games to prompt the organization to activate Kyler Murray.
This is a sizzle purely because of the strange nature of the team. Jonathan Gannon is already fighting for his coaching life, even with a 5 year deal on the table, and this regime is not the one that drafted Kyler. It would make sense to see the full tank be initiated soon, so temper expectations with the Cards.
It’s easy to say this following Cincy’s impressive win against Arizona that they’re going to turn things around, get back to their usual winning ways, and take the division crown again.
While it is great to see Joe Burrow back, this offense has to show more consistency. Reports have said that Burrow doesn’t feel 100% yet, and he’s likely still a few weeks away. That, combined with general offensive inefficiency so far this season (i.e. Joe Mixon) and Tee Higgins shelved with his rib injury, make this an uphill battle for the boys in Cincy.
In contrast, though, this division is wide open. Pittsburgh and Baltimore are tied at the top at 3-2, and Cincy and Cleveland are each only a game back at 2-3. If the Bengals can get healthy and optimize their offense the way they have in the past, this team can grab another division title.
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