Fantasy AdvicePlayer Profiles

Zac Stacy Was The Apple of My Eye, Until I Took a Bite

By October 23, 2014No Comments

Zac Stacy sure knew how to make me feel special.

In 2013 he joined my fantasy team and helped carry me to my second championship win in 4 years. I was on top of the world and felt invincible in the fantasy world.

Now not even a full year later, our relationship is in shambles. My team is on life support and Zac Stacy is partially to blame.

For those of you that have listened to our fantasy football podcast or saw our preseason fantasy rankings, you know that my love for Zac Stacy was undying. I was one of the few, if not the only person on this site, that believed Zac Stacy could repeat his performance.

Now following a week 7 performance where he had 0 fantasy points, my heart is officially broken.

Let's take a look at where my head was at (besides being in love with Stacy) and where it's gotten us today.

My Original Argument For Zac Stacy

Zac Stacy and Fantasy Value in 2014

Photo courtesy of LestersLegends.

I looked at the numbers and saw that Jeff Fisher as a coach, loved to run the ball. Sure there were plenty of arguments that Stacy just wasn't that great of a runner. Looking back there may be some truth to that. But at the time I saw that when he was the coach of the Titans, Chris Johnson saw 925 of 1,413 attempts from 2008-2010. That's a shit ton of touches. In percentages that's 65% of the running back touches, which was even less than the 70% of touches he claimed Stacy would get (we should never trust coaches).

The Touches Don't Lie

One of the charts that completely convinced me that Stacy would see enough carries to give me even mediocre RB2 numbers was this one courtesy of RotoWorld:

Fantasy Football

The highlights of the chart about Jeff Fisher running backs told me this:

  • 8 total seasons with more than 25 rushes/game
  • 11 total seasons with more than 20 rushes/game

Even at 70% of the workload I expected Stacy to see the lions share of the work and to do something with it. He started off with the Lions share but it quickly became an ugly scene.

The Coaching Staff Changes

Obviously I saw the boost that Fisher was providing to the run game. That was a forgone conclusion in my mind.

What I also noticed was that Brian Schottenheimer, their offensive coordinator, had a furious rush game when with the Jets. A run minded coach and OC, sounds like heaven for Stacy's production.

When with the Jets, Brian (ha like we're on a first name basis) finished with the 1st, 2nd, 10th and 12th most rushing attempts per game. I certainly thought that would bode well for Stacy and the Rams.

It appears that my logic wasn't completely flawed. The numbers supported some fantasy production from the Rams backfield, it simply appears I had fallen in love with the wrong running back.

Zac Stacy's Current Fantasy Value

Zach Stacy Fantasy Value 2014

Graphic by Evan Russell, USA TODAY Sports

I really didn't see this coming. By virtue of loving Zac Stacy I wrote Tre Mason and the other running backs off. I thought Benny Cunningham could be a valuable handcuff, but I simply believed that Tre Mason was too raw to be a trustworthy fantasy running back in 2014.

Sure we've only seen the one big game from his so far (week 7), so it's possible this was a one-week wonder. But I don't believe that and neither do you.

Zac Stacy has 1 touchdown on the year so far, read that again, just 1 touchdown. He also hasn't had a game with more than 71 yards on the ground. Certainly not the stats you want to see from one of your starting fantasy running backs.

Fantasy Football 2014Here is a chart, courtesy of Rotoworld, of Zac Stacy's 2014 performance compared to the best running back of each week (week 4 was the bye).

Not exactly an encouraging chart if you're catching my drift.

The Child of Matt Asiata & Shonn Greene

This quote comes courtesy of someone at Rotoworld. It's absolutely genius I think.

Zac Stacy has shown the talent and quickness of both of these guys (that's not saying much).

The Tide Is Changing

Tre Mason out-touched Benny 18-7 in Week 7.

The Rams still don't seem to trust Mason in passing downs as he is leaving Austin Davis out to get crushed. That's why Benny has seen some time over the past 3 weeks, scoring a touchdown in each. He's been more reliable than Stacy has been all year so far.

When looking for the guy for the rest of the way, it's Tre Mason. Cunningham will remain involved in the passing game until Mason can learn to pass block. That'll take time, which means Cunninghamn could be a desperation play for some. He's still worth owning however.

The Rams Fantasy Running Back Value

I got it wrong. I'm not afraid to admit it.

I didn't expect to get my heart broken by Zac Stacy. I thought the rest of the fantasy world was crazy for being so down on Stacy, clearly I was the one that was out of touch.

As of today I've officially cut Zac Stacy. We'll no longer text or chat on AIM, it's a full fledged breakup. For the next fantasy owner that takes a flier on him, be smarter than I was.

As for Tre Mason, I'd love to add him to my squad. Not in the way that I loved Zac Stacy, but in the sense that he could help my team that has been devastated by Stacy.

What I've learned is that sometimes everyone else is seeing something for a reason. I was blinded by my past success and so far it's come back to haunt me.

I don't want any fantasy pity, it doesn't belong in fantasy football. Everything you do and don't do will impact your season, you just need to roll with the punches.

For those of you who took my advice and drafted Stacy, my deepest condolences. Send Stacy out to the wire. It's like taking off a bandaid, sometimes ripping it off in one solid swoop is simply the best way to go.

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Nick Schreck