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ALERT from RealTime Fantasy Sports

An Interview with the TFC Champion

Podcast with Stephen Hawley, TFC Champion

RealTime Fantasy Sports senior writer Jeff Paur interviews the winner for this year's Fantasy Championship, Stephen Hawley. Paur talks to Hawley about the big win and how he navigated the season to win it all.

  • Fantasy Playoff Week 2Scoreboard
    Ghost1023 (6-8)130.70
    Fantasy 1 (10-4)118.95F
  • Player Notes
    Coby Fleener Jan 16 11:00am ET

    New Orleans Saints tight end Coby Fleener is coming off of a weak season and ESPN's Mike Triplett believes it is "highly unlikely" Fleener returns to the Saints on his current deal. Coming off a season in which he caught just 22 passes in 11 games, Fleener is set to count $8 million against the cap with a $6.3 million salary. There is almost no chance he sticks around at those numbers, and while a pay cut is possible, it is more likely the Saints cut him outright. Doing so would save $3.2 million against the cap.

    Peyton Barber Jan 16 10:00am ET

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin "wasn't ever the same" after returning from suspension, according to Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht. Martin looked great in his first game back, rushing for 74 yards and a score on just 13 carries against the Patriots, but it was all downhill from there. He was disciplined for a team-rules violation in Week 13, and he watched Peyton Barber jump him on the depth chart. The Bucs can wipe all of his $6.75 million salary off the cap by cutting him. It would be a shock if that did not happen.

    AJ McCarron Jan 16 9:40am ET

    Cincinnati Bengals quarterback A.J. McCarron said he wanted the "opportunity" to start in Cleveland. McCarron was all but traded to the Browns at the deadline, but the paperwork was not filed in time. "I think I would have had some success playing for Hue," McCarron said. "I would have loved the opportunity to go up there and get them a win, more than one win." While he was specifically talking about the Browns, it is pretty clear McCarron is just tired of being a backup. Whether he is deemed a restricted or unrestricted free agent at a hearing on February 15, McCarron will likely do everything he can to get out of Cincinnati this offseason.

    Marcus Mariota Jan 15 10:30pm ET

    The Tennessee Titans will interview Rams offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur for their vacant head coaching position, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. LaFleur was working under the tutelage of impressive young Rams head coach Sean McVay in 2017, and he also worked with him in Washington. It would be an outside-the-box hire, but perhaps that's what the Titans need after being held hostage by head coach Mike Mularkey and his offensive assistants this season. The main order of business for the next Titans head coach will be improving quarterback Marcus Mariota and getting the most out of their receiving corps.

    Ted Ginn Jr. Jan 15 9:23pm ET

    New Orleans Saints wide receiver Ted Ginn finished with a team-high eight receptions in a loss to Minnesota on Sunday. He ended up with 72 yards, but no touchdowns. Ginn made a 29-yard reception that went for a touchdown in the second quarter, but it was nullified by a penalty and wiped out. Ginn technically did not post career highs this season, but it's hard to argue that it wasn't his most successful season as a receiver. He gelled extremely well with Drew Brees and seems to have found a home in New Orleans.

    T.J. Yeldon Jan 15 9:22pm ET

    Jacksonville Jaguars running back T.J. Yeldon caught three passes for 57 yards and added 20 rushing yards with a touchdown in the Jaguars stunning 45-42 victory over the Steelers. Yeldon and Leonard Fournette pounded the Steelers defensive front the entire game and Yeldon came up huge in the latter stages. The veteran running back has suffered an injury-riddled season but is coming up big at just the right time. The Jaguars will look to continue to pound the rock next week when the Jaguars play the Patriots for the right to go to the Super Bowl. Yeldon's role in the offensive game plan could increase next week.

    Blake Bortles Jan 15 7:43pm ET

    Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles has averaged just 193 passing yards in away games this season while throwing six touchdowns and eight interceptions in those contests.

    Ben Roethlisberger Jan 15 5:53pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger has informed teammates that he would like to play three more years in the NFL. Roethlisberger had already announced that he would be returning for the 2018 season.

    Ben Roethlisberger Jan 15 5:50pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley may be out of a job in Pittsburgh according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Haley does not have a contract for 2018, and his relationship with Ben Roethlisberger became increasingly fractured in 2017. One Steelers source told the Post-Gazette that one of the reasons Big Ben openly contemplated retirement was his failing rapport with Haley. The two "rarely talked along the sidelines," and "never huddled to discuss strategy" during games. Roethlisberger reportedly requested QBs coach Randy Fichtner to come down from the booth to create a game-day "buffer" between the quarterback and Pittsburgh's OC. Fichtner is reportedly a "strong candidate" to replace Haley if the offensive coordinator is not re-signed.

    Andrew Luck Jan 15 5:30pm ET

    With news that New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is likely to become the next coach for the Indianapolis Colts, Dallas Cowboys linebackers coach Matt Eberflus is reportedly expected to follow as the team's defensive coordinator according to NFL Network reporter Tom Pelissero. Eberflus just completed his seventh season with the Cowboys and is infamous for his success in the development of linebackers Sean Lee, Anthony Hitchens, and Jaylon Smith. His addition to the Colts could certainly help to reform a defense that is in shambles overall but full of young talent. The pieces are starting to come together in Indianapolis and the return of a fully healthy Andrew Luck should have fans raising expectations for the 2018/19 season.

    Xavier Grimble Jan 15 5:23pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers TE Xavier Grimble and LS Kameron Canaday were signed to one-year contract extensions Monday, Jan. 15. Financial terms were not disclosed.

    Le'Veon Bell Jan 15 4:30pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell told reporters on Sunday that he wanted to stay in Pittsburgh but that circumstances may prevent that from happening. When asked about whether he wants to stay in Pittsburgh, Bell responded, "Of course. I never want to leave this city, but obviously, circumstances and things like that. But I definitely don't." He went on to say that he thinks the Steelers have the right group of guys to make a run in the playoffs in 2018, although he wouldn't elaborate when asked whether he was part of that group. Bell is a free agent this offseason and has previously stated that he would rather retire than be franchised by the Steelers again. There are already reports out that Pittsburgh plans to disregard Bell's wishes and place the franchise tag designation on their All-Pro running back this offseason. Bell sat out this past preseason to show his displeasure with the organization for not offering him a long-term deal and appears prepared to battle with them over his contract yet again this offseason.

    Marcus Mariota Jan 15 4:20pm ET

    The Cleveland Browns are rumored to be interested in adding Mike Mularkey to their staff as their new offensive coordinator. Mularkey was fired by the Tennessee Titans two days after losing to the New England Patriots in the Divisional Round of the playoffs. The Browns have been without an offensive coordinator for the two seasons of Hue Jackson's coaching stint but it is clear the team would like to add someone to fill the role after Jackson has gone 1-31 over the past two seasons while calling his own plays on offense. Of course, it would be a classic Browns move to hire Mularkey as their OC after the main reason the Titans let him go was his inability to get the most out of Marcus Mariota, Corey Davis, Derrick Henry, and the rest of the Titans offense.

    Cliff Avril Jan 15 4:13pm ET

    Seattle Seahawks DE Cliff Avril (neck) plans on trying to play again despite undergoing neck surgery and missing most of last season. Avril will turn 32 years old this offseason.

    Martavis Bryant Jan 15 4:00pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Martavis Bryant caused a stir during the regular season when he went to social media to complain about his role on the team and later requested a trade from the team. The young receiver has changed his tune after his team's Divisional Round loss to the Jaguars on Sunday, telling reporters he wants to be back with the team next year and will be ready for organized team activities, stating his desire to win a Super Bowl with the team. It was unlikely that the team would have traded Bryant this offseason anyway after they responded to his previous tirade and trade demand by suspending him for one game. Look for Bryant to resume his role as the team's No. 3 wide receiver in 2018.

    Eli Rogers Jan 15 3:50pm ET

    Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Eli Rogers suffered a leg injury during his team's 45-42 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Divisional Round of the playoffs. Rogers was off to a nice start for the Steelers, catching five passes for 42 yards before departing in the fourth quarter. He was spotted on crutches after the game with a wrap on his lower right leg. For what it's worth, Rogers sent a tweet on Sunday night which said, "I am fine. Thanks to all the fans for your concerns." The 25-year-old slot receiver has shown some potential for the Steelers but he remains a distant fourth in the pecking order in the passing game.

    Marcus Peters Jan 15 3:20pm ET

    Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Darrelle Revis said he'd like to return for a 12th season in 2018 despite not playing that well in his brief time with the Chiefs. The 32-year-old didn't practice or play until late November but joined the Chiefs and played in five games and the Wild-Card loss to the Titans. However, he was the third cornerback behind Marcus Peters and Steven Nelson, although Revis did start two games. He'll be under contract for $10 million in 2018, a steep price for a cornerback at the end of his career. Revis plans on taking part in offseason practices and training camp next year, so his quality play could improve if he stays healthy. At this point of his career, though, Revis is more of veteran depth and is unlikely to be a difference maker.

    Carlos Henderson Jan 15 3:10pm ET

    Denver Broncos rookie wide receiver Carlos Henderson was arrested for marijuana possession in Louisiana on Sunday. He was the team's third-round pick in the 2017 draft, but he didn't play at all in 2017 due to a thumb injury. Police officers said Henderson admitted to smoking marijuana earlier on Sunday but denied smoking in the vehicle. Henderson is more of a speedy slot receiver, but this development coupled with his injury means the Broncos won't be able to rely on him in 2018.

    Andrew Sendejo Jan 15 3:10pm ET

    Minnesota Vikings safety Andrew Sendejo (concussion) suffered a concussion in the Divisional Round win over the Saints on Sunday, and he did not return to the game. Sendejo is an important part of Minnesota's stingy secondary, and he'll have to pass the league's concussion protocol in order to face the Eagles in the NFC title game next weekend.

    Tyrod Taylor Jan 15 3:10pm ET

    The Buffalo Bills hired Brian Daboll as their new offensive coordinator on Sunday. It's an underwhelming hire for a coach that has been an assistant for several different NFL teams but hasn't seen much success. He's coming off a national title with Alabama in college, but he'll have his work cut out for him with Buffalo. The Bills are likely to move on from quarterback Tyrod Taylor this offseason, so Daboll will be tasked with implementing a new quarterback to the fold.

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