Parsing Through Matthew Berry’s Final Love/Hate

ESPN’s Matthew Berry believes that Patrick Mahomes could be this season’s Carson Wentz, a second-year QB that finds fantasy football stardom. Berry cites Mahomes ability to run with the ball (he had double-digit rushing scores in each of his final two college seasons) and Andy Reid’s system as reasons for optimism.

Over the last 10 years, Reid’s QBs have scored 2755.4 fantasy points (ESPN scoring) which would be the fifth most out of all NFL team had Reid been his own squad. Yes, there’s chatter of Mahomes making too many mistakes for the Chiefs and surely he won’t be as risk-adverse as Alex Smith. However, 19 QBs are going ahead of him on average in ESPN drafts and with this kind of upside, its difficult to find that the risk is not worth the potential reward.

Berry’s final Love/Hate column is worth a read. The longtime ESPN scribe is shifting his work more to TV and podcasting and it’ll be sad not to read this column on a weekly basis. Make sure you check out his last one and if you can’t read the whole thing, we’ve got you covered with some of Berry’s fantasy analysis below:

  • In three of the past four seasons, Redskins coach Jay Gruden has been top-12 in passing percentage and Alex Smith comes to town with at least 15 fantasy points in over 60% of his fantasy starts. That’s more than Russell Wilson (59.4%), Philip Rivers (59.4%) and Cam Newton (51.6%) among other, as Berry notes.
  • Be cautious of starting Ben Roethlisberger on the road. The Steelers QB is averaging 23.26 fantasy points in Pittsburg vs. 13.97 fantasy points on the road over the past four seasons.
  • Josh McCown, Jay Cutler, Eli Manning and Joe Flacco are among the QBs who had more games with multiple TD passes than Derek Carr last season, Berry adds.
  • Saquon Barkley should be a great fit for Pat Shurmur’s fantasy-friendly offense. As Berry points out, while Shurmur was in Minnesota and Philly, his offenses ranked in the top six in red zone rush percentage.
  • Berry is high on Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper, citing how Jon Gruden has had at least one 1,000-yard receiver in each of the 11 years he’s been a head coach.
  • Some of Marvin Jones Jr.’s production appears to be tied to the health of Kenny Golliday. In the five games last season that Golladay was out, Jones averaged 10.2 targets. But in the 11 games, Golladay played, Jones averaged just 5.1 targets.

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