We're Always Looking for an Edge
We don't always know where to look and when we do, we often fail to recognize the genuine article for it is. An edge at this time of the year can require risk. Most people are risk-averse. There is a smaller percentage of GMs who often lack a good barometer for what's too risky, but they're a topic for another time.
Gaining an edge at this time of the year requires having the vision to see the possibility of an outcome that most people didn't expect, identifying the tangible and logical reasons that can underpin this possibility, and having the guts to embrace it.
If you're a serial trader, check yourself with that fine line between what's truly going to upgrade your team with the least amount of downside and pursuing the thrill of the deal in order to get high from the buzz of the potential ceiling outcome.
This feature, like many I'm doing this year, is rooted in the idea of identifying players who could potentially outperform their current value for the rest of the year and, based on common public perceptions about their profile, could be acquired at a low enough cost to minimize the risk.
Minimizing risk doesn't mean there will be minimal risk, just less of it than there is with other players/scenarios.
Raheem Mostert potentially fits this profile for many of you. Let's learn why.
Why Raheem Mostert Is Worth Knowing About
He's 30 years old. He has earned 100 yards rushing only twice in his 8-year career. He has an injury label.
Bad production profile...
It's a perfect profile that keeps perceived value at a minimum. Our inherent biases see these factors in a player and we're far more willing to part with that player before it blows up in our faces.
But if you're in a position where you have little to lose with the current course of your team and you're honest with yourself about it, then you'll discover that Mostert is worth a deeper look.
Currently RB26 in PPR formats, Mostert has performed as RB14 during the past three weeks, and there's less than a point difference between him and RB11 Joe Mixon. Mostert has delivered this production against the Jets, Vikings, and Steelers, who are ranked as the 21st, 17th, and 10th-most generous in fantasy points allowed to running backs.
Mostert plays in the same scheme with the same scheme architect that he had during his peak career production with the 49ers in 2019 when he delivered RB13 value in PPR formats during Weeks 10-16.
Our community, which is heavily populated with accountants, underwriters, and insurance adjusters, will look at their spreadsheet formulas and write this off as too risky and likely a fluke period. Because of Mostert's age and injury history, he may never produce like he did at the end of 2019, and that will allow them to define this phase of his career as a statistical fluke.
Where they tend to overreach with their conclusions is when they tell you the player isn't, never was, and will never be good.
This has nothing to do with what we see on the field, only the broad strokes of outcomes. While that can be valuable when driving a majority of your management decisions with the draft, lineup management, free agency, and trades, it has its blind spots.
The old joke among quarterback coaches I know is that if you follow the if-then of a football play, every outcome is a check-down. One of the smartest quarterbacks in recent generations was Alex Smith. The best thing he did was perform the check-down.
If you can see that you're team's season is heading toward a check-down and a punt, taking a calculated risk on Mostert's profile has value.
I studied Mostert's tape during his tenure in San Francisco, and in addition to being one of the most explosive runners in the open field, he's a far more refined player than people realize. Although Kyle Shanahan often sought players whose speed and aggression trumped their higher-end conceptual and technical faculties at the position, Mostert was one of the exceptions that he stumbled upon.
Mostert possesses the athletic ability, the high-end skills between the ears, and the filter to prevent him from overthinking in a simple-decision environment.
After studying Mostert's past three games in Miami, there's a lot to like:
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