The fantasy football studs-turned-duds you should banish

The older you get, the more you will understand the get-off-my-lawn mentality of us older folks. The more you realize how making a mess of things isn’t fun, it is just annoying and often ruins some hard work.

Like, as of today, I’m telling A.J. Green: Get off my lawn! Those few teams we have when we risked a chance on you bouncing back after a lost season, well, you will sully those rosters no more. We cast you out like a fantasy demon, banish you from even a spot on our bench. Get all the way out of here, and don’t forget to shut the door behind you.

That A.J., he’s the worst. But there are other roster vandals messing up our fantasy shrubbery who must be dealt with — be it by benching or trading or, if a surprising replacement is on the waiver wire, outright dropping.

Todd Gurley, we’re going to ask you nicely, please take a seat on our bench. Now, get comfy for a spell while we try to find any suckers who will take you in trade. Yes, we know you had a fairly decent day Sunday — 14-for-80 and a TD — but you’re invisible in the passing game and, worse, Brian Hill got nine carries and did more with the ball (check out his nifty 35-yard TD run). If we can’t find a trade partner for you in the next few weeks, Todd, we might send you to meet up with A.J. on our waiver wire.

Hey, Brandin Cooks, we’ve let you hang out on the fringes of our fantasy property. We weren’t expecting you to be some prize-winning lawn ornament, but we weren’t expecting this much of a mess — being a single-digit albatross when Will Fuller V is playing. Consider this a warning: We are searching for a replacement, and if we find one we like, you’re going to be sent to the curb to get picked up on trash day.

Joe Mixon, you cost us a lot in draft capital. We can’t just throw you out like a flea-market purchase. We’re going to stuff you in a closet, bury you on our bench, and wait it out, assuming we can’t get market value in return in trade. We’ll use James Robinson or Mike Davis or Myles Gaskin instead.

And you, David Montgomery, you get lucky. Just as we’re ready to find ways to get you out of our lineup, your backfield mate, Tarik Cohen, suffers a torn ACL and will miss the rest of the season. Now, David, you likely will get heavier volume to offset your inefficiency. And you have a new QB in Nick Foles. So maybe you’re going to get it going. We’ll give you a pass, for now. But know just how close you came to getting parked.

Now, all of you guys, if you behave, and if you start playing nice, you could be welcomed back, and avoid an A.J.-style exile.

Giddy up!

Ryan Fitzpatrick QB, Dolphins

He has two straight 20-plus fantasy outings. Don’t trust him long term, but do as a streaming option for this week against a Seahawks defense that has been a sieve against opposing passing games.

Anthony Miller WR, Bears

Nick Foles taking over the starting QB job for Mitchell Trubisky should help the Bears offense. Miller caught a TD from Foles on Sunday and had another overturned on replay. Worth a spot deep on your bench.

Tee Higgins WR, Bengals

Out-targeted A.J. Green this week and scored twice. We prefer the younger talent on the rise on the end of our bench to Green’s falling stock.

Mo Alie-Cox TE, Colts

We know Philip Rivers likes throwing to his tight ends, and Alie-Cox has emerged as his favorite early this season.

Hold your horses

Jeff Wilson Jr. RB, 49ers

Scored twice (one run, one reception) but was terribly inefficient on the ground (12 carries for 15 yards). He’ll be nothing but a TD vulture until Tevin Coleman returns.

Andy Isabella WR, Cardinals

Had a nice game Sunday filling in for Christian Kirk (4-47, two TDs). But Kirk should return — soon, if not this week — which will limit Isabella’s time on the field.

Brandon Aiyuk WR, 49ers

Got a rushing TD Sunday, which won’t happen often for any receiver. This is a run-heavy team. QB Jimmy Garoppolo (when healthy) doesn’t throw to WRs a ton, so volume isn’t going to come. Fellow WR Deebo Samuel reportedly could return in Week 5, putting a cap on Aiyuk’s future touches.

Jimmy Graham TE, Bears

Yeah, two of three games have been solid, and QB change could help. But we’re reluctant to think he suddenly is going to re-emerge at 33.

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