AAF Trendspotting - Two Weeks In

JR Reynolds (@JR_Reynolds17)

The weekly AAF Trendspotting series takes a look at AAF league-wide trends and the impact on fantasy sports. While much of the game is the same as the NFL, the scaled down league size, developmental roster pools, and coaching tactics can have a huge effect.

Two Man Group

Through two weeks of play in the AAF, the quarterback position looks top heavy. So far, both Garrett Gilbert (ORL) and John Wolford (ARI) look to be the only players capable of putting up consistent fantasy performances.

Gilbert has eclipsed 25+ fantasy points in both of his games, while Wolford went for 30+ in Week 1 and followed it up with a 20 point outing in Week 2.

As of right now, it looks like you will be picking between these two signal callers when starting your DFS lineups in the coming weeks.

While Gilbert might have the edge in the air, Wolford looks capable of adding extra points on the ground. Through two weeks he has rushed 15 times for 48 yards. It may not seem like much, but the attempts are there nonetheless.

Targets A Lot, Points Not

Mekale McKay was the chalk receiver of the slate in Week 2. Coming off of his 12 target game in Week 1, he looked poised to lead the Commanders receiving attack yet again. While McKay got the looks (9), he only came up with two catches in the AAF game of the week. It is worth noting that McKay did have a touchdown called back that would have certainly boosted his fantasy score.

McKay currently leads the league in targets with 21 total, but there is reason to be concerned with what he has been able to do with them.

I am curious to see if San Antonio continues to make him the #AlphaMcKay in the receiving attack or if there might be a more even spread going forward.

If you are more inclined to believe the former, McKay looks like he could be an ideal Week 3 GPP play with both his target share and red-zone role.

Receivers In The Backfield?

With the recent trend of of running back targets in the NFL, we have become accustomed to building reception upside into our DFS lineups. With that said, it looks like the current set of AAF coaches are opting to use their ball carriers in the more traditional sense.

Through two weeks, running back usage in the passing game does not seem like something we will be able to count on for fantasy points. There have been a couple outliers, however.

Most recently, Trent Richardson was targeted a whopping 7 times on Saturday, gaining 50 yards on 6 catches for the Iron. Richardson isn’t known for his receiving chops, but it looks like he is getting all of the work in the Birmingham backfield regardless as there has been basically no competition.

Similar to McKay, Akeem Hunt was another chalk play gone bad this weekend. He was effective on the ground in Week 1 and had 5 targets (but no catches). It looks like the door is still open for Hunt to have a receiving role for the Apollos, even though he only came up with 1 catch on 2 targets in Week 2.

Proceed with caution though as Hunt’s backfield mate D’Ernest Johnson has been effective on minimal touches.

Right Direction

Trying to predict future success is one of the key components in the game of DFS. With only two weeks of data, we still might not have seen what some of these players have to offer.

Here is a list of receivers who saw their target counts increase by 3 or more from Week 1 to Week 2:

Target Count Increases to Monitor

Player Week 3 Price Week 1 Targets Week 1 FPTs Week 2 Targets Week 2 FPTs
C. Johnson $7,400 5 10 10 35.2
D. Ayers $6,000 0 0 8 13
N. Spruce $4,800 2 2.1 6 9.8
L. Washington $4,600 0 0 4 5.7
R. Hall $4,300 1 0.6 4 5.9
A. Jennings $3,900 4 3 7 3.9

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