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Monday 16th Oct 2017

Larry Denicola, the commissioner of my Strat-O-Matic Hall of Fame League, maintains that getting the final three outs in our league, which could mean Rogers Hornsby as a pinch hitter, are the toughest outs there are, making finishing off a baseball game as tough as a sports task can get. But, the way football is stacking up this year, the final few minutes within NFL games this season might usurp Larry's theory on closing out a game.

Last week, I actually won my game in one league on the last play of the game, when Larry Donnell scored, and then dropped two others when Le'Veon Bell scored at the buzzer. 

Though none of my contests this week were quite so hard on my cardio system, watching Seattle disintegrate and the Bears fall in OT while the Broncos squeezed by the Browns, proves the only thing that is certain within the NFL is uncertainty. If you don't believe that, ask the Steelers, who rallied to beat the very good Cardinals with their third-string quarterback, who had a second half surge that was just the kind of thing that keeps us riveted to Sunday football.

That would be Landry Jones, of whom was written a month ago, "Landry is the third-string quarterback and will not be needed on the game day roster" before the Niners game.

But, the third-year QB out of Oklahoma surely grabbed some spotlight, and perhaps established himself as the successor to Ben Roethlisberger with his second half debut heroics which included an 8-for-12, 168-yard game with two scores, both to Martavis Bryant. Jones could be a great cheap DFS pick next week facing the Chiefs.

Similarly, Bryant, who made his 2015 debut after serving a four-game substance abuse suspension, showed his mettle, bagging six grabs for 137 yards and two scores. Bryant might still be hiding somewhere on your free agent list thanks to injuries, bye weeks or roster limitations.

I did watch a lot of the fun Houston/Jacksonville game, and the Jaguars do indeed have some interesting and very good looking receivers in Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns and Bryan Walters, all of whom make nice pickups depending upon your play. Not to mention Jacksonville's signal caller, Blake Bortles, who again threw for 300 yards and three scores, which might have been four had an end-of-first-half end zone pick not haunted him.

In the same vein, the Texans' Brian Hoyer played another gritty game, tossing three TD passes for 293 yards.

A few more names to track this coming week include Stefon Diggs, who grabbed seven Teddy Bridgewater passes for 129 yards, and it looks like the Broncos' Ronnie Hillman (20 carries for 111 yards and three receptions for four more) might finally be realizing some of the promise sporadically shown over the past couple of seasons.

Finally, if Eddie Lacy is giving you fits with his under-performance, it's time to cuff him to James Starks, who bagged 112 yards on ten carries plus caught a pass while scoring a pair of TDs.

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