Updated: Nov 12
How can I explain it?
Awards you and I created,
I’m glad that you all made it!
Here at The Draft Society we have, however, decided to emulate the great Michael Scott by creating The Drafties – a monthly awards article to honour (and shame!) the fantasy players who have been carrying our teams to glory (or dragging them down into the abyss). We have seven awards and at the end of each month we will convene at DTS HQ and argue over who deserves the credit/discredit of receiving each.
So without further ado, here are the winners of the October 2021 Drafties…
The Drafties will be coming at you each and every month! Comment below with your predictions for next month!
The “Steady Eddie” Award
The Steady Eddie award goes to the player who has been a model of consistency throughout the month.
Winner: Dwight McNeil
The first ever Drafties award goes to Burnley star Dwight McNeil. The midfielder has been as consistent as they come all season, let alone just in October. Four scores ranging between 7.5 and 13.5 during the month included a solid 9 away at Manchester City when many managers may have benched him. It’s a far cry from the player who had 13 scores of 5 points or fewer last season. This sort of consistent scoring may not single-handedly win you your fantasy gameweek, but it definitely won’t be the reason if you lose it.
Honourable Mentions: Christian Norgaard, Tomas Soucek
The “Andrey Arshavin” Award
The Andrey Arshavin award goes to the best individual gameweek performance of the month (in honour of when Arshavin scored 4 goals against Liverpool back in 2009).
Winner: Roberto Firmino
Competition for the first Andrey Arshavin award was fierce, but ultimately, we went for Firmino because, well, let’s be honest – he probably won’t ever be in contention again. His 47-pointer away at Watford was the stuff of dreams, or at least Totti’s anyway. With everyone focused on how much damage teammates Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane would inflict upon the Hornets, it was the forgotten man Firmino that stepped up with three goals and an assist. What a performance, and to put the surprise value of it into context – outside of this game Bobby has amassed just 30 points in 272 minutes of football. He was also not selected by a single team out of 150+ in PerfectXI.
Honourable Mentions: Reece James vs Newcastle United, Mohamad Salah vs Manchester United
The “Fall from Grace” Award
The Fall from Grace award goes to the player who has seen their fantasy value drop the most during the month.
Winner: Paul Pogba
The talk of Pogba being a top 20 player was very loud a month ago (from one member of the TDS crew in particular…) and may have been justified as he began the season by starting six consecutive games that produced almost 100 points (at 16.4 PPS). That talk has gone very quiet, very quickly. October started with him being rested for the trip to Everton, then scoring just 1 point as Manchester United were humbled by Leicester. A return to the bench for the game against Liverpool followed, which actually may have saved some fantasy managers after the Frenchman was sent off 14 minutes after being brought on as a substitute. The resultant suspension for the final matchup – which United won 3-0 win against Tottenham – sums it up.
Honourable Mentions: Marcos Alonso, Andrew Robertson
The “Most Frustrating” Award
The Most Frustrating award goes to the player who has been most frustrating from a fantasy perspective. This may be due to a number of reasons including underwhelming performances, regularly being rested/dropped, coming close to hauling but not quite doing so, etc.
Winner: Adama Traore
I’m going to throw it out there now: by the end of the season, we’ll be renaming this award the Adama Award. Traore has been frustrating managers ever since he first (properly) came onto the scene at Middlesbrough when he had a 13.0 PP90 but just an 8.2 FP/G, thanks to his bench-warming abilities. After a few seasons of growth, we (and I was a particularly vocal advocate) were ready to welcome him to the Elite fantasy players club. His August and September returns looked like we could start giving ourselves the self-appreciating pat on the backs already. Then October hit. Benched, 15-pointer, 2-pointer, benched. And it hasn’t gone unnoticed either that Wolves have won all three games in which Adama didn’t start. For someone that is a points machine when they’re on the pitch, this is a huge concern, and certainly frustrating.
Honourable Mentions: Ismaila Sarr, Nicolas Pepe
The “Super Streamer” Award
The Super Streamer award goes to the best performing player of the month who was/is often streamable (i.e., is rostered in less than 50% of leagues).
Winner: Matthew Lowton
Yep, that’s right. Two Burnley players are taking home prizes tonight. The Super Streamer award goes to right-back Matthew Lowton, who has been the fourth highest scoring defender in October and yet still is rostered in just 33% of leagues! In his four games played, Lowton had just the one clean sheet, which earned him 10.75 point – and ironically this was probably his most disappointing return given that it was a home matchup versus Norwich. The 6.5 away at Manchester City was probably 6.5 more than expected, and this was then followed up by 11 at Southampton before the monster haul just before Halloween that brought in 26.25 against Brentford. The October Matthew Lowton was performing at Trent levels.
Honourable Mentions: Nathan Redmond, Mohammed Salisu
The “Top Shot-Stopper” Award
The Top Shot-Stopper award goes to the best performing goalkeeper of the month (about time they get some recognition!)
Winner: Aaron Ramsdale
Despite pre-season fantasy darlings Emiliano Martinez, Illan Meslier, and Nick Pope doing their best to demonstrate that drafting goalkeepers is a fool’s game, we still think it’s time the position was recognised. So congratulations to Aaron Ramsdale for winning the first ever Top Shot-Stopper award! The Arsenal man really has hit the ground running since being given the starting job and has been behind 5 wins and 2 draws in his 7 matches so far. But enough about the real world. In fantasy he has been brilliant too – October has seen scores of 12.5, 4.25, 5.25, and a massive 27-pointer away at Leicester – a team that have been awful for goalkeepers to face historically. Is it too soon to say, “England’s number 1”…?
Honourable Mentions: Robert Sanchez, Lukasz Fabianski
The “Simply Elite” Award
The Simply Elite award is, as the name implies, simple: it goes to the best player in our amazing draft fantasy game for that month. The guy who produced at a first round, first pick level.
Winner: Mohamed Salah
Every award was discussed and debated – except this one. It wasn’t necessary. Mohamed Salah has been on another planet to everyone else this season, and October was no different. The Liverpool forward scored 118 points during the month – 43% more than the second highest scoring player (Ben Chilwell). Only seven players managed to score HALF of Salah’s 118 points – that is just unbelievable. Returns of 31, 27, 45, and 15 are probably not going to be seen again for quite some time, if ever. Five goals and four assists tends to be a good recipe for this sort of production, and at this rate, Salah is on course to hit an absurd 950 points. For context, Kevin De Bruyne’s phenomenal 2019-20 campaign saw him amass “just” 717.
Honourable Mentions: Ben Chilwell, Phil Foden
TDS Crew’s November Predictions
Before we leave you, we thought it might be a bit of fun to make some predictions for next month. So here they are:
Do you agree with our selections? How many from your fantasy teams have been honoured/dishonoured? And what are your own predictions for next month? Let us know by commenting below or getting in touch on Twitter!
For all the latest from The Draft Society, follow @Draft_Society on Twitter!
And for more in-depth and exclusive resources, become a member of The Inner Circle.