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 decided to emulate the great Michael Scott by creating The Drafties – a monthly awards article to honor (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 TDS HQ and argue over who deserves the credit/discredit of receiving each.
We have been slacking with our Drafties for a month now, so this here is a double feature, September+October more love to go around
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.
September Winner: James Tarkowski (DEF; Everton)
With only 2 GWs in September, most of our awards were a tossup, but Tarkowski, a historical Steady Eddie gets the nod with 2 CSs which resulted in 2 15+ scores. The towering Englishman has been a mainstay in the upper echelons of fantasy defenders for years and after his switch to Everton, he continued to do what he does best, ghost out of his mind to become a premium fantasy player on a less than premium fantasy team. His Steadiness over the course of the first 3 months of the season is also noteworthy. He has not scored less than 4.5 or more than 19 in any of this season's games. Webster's dictionary defines Set and Forget as James Tarkowski.
October Winner: Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall (MID, Leicester)
A new kid on the block who burst into the awards consideration last season, but could not find the winning formula, gets the golden statue this time around. Leicester have slowly but surely turned their season around and other than an understandable blip against Man City (0.5) Dewsbury-Hall's October scores have been as consistent as it is possible to imagine. He got 11.5 twice (three times if you count this past weekend), a 12 and a 7 and a 7.5. Good going KDH! He will hope that Leicester can build on the results in October to start climbing the table quickly.
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).
September Winner: Heung-Min Son (FWD; Tottenham) vs Leicester
It is extremely rare that we award the AAA to a player who delivered their performance from the bench, but this is exactly what we have done for our September winner. The August Fall from Grace Award winner features again with his performance against then hapless Leicester. Son came on on the hour mark having endured a horrible start to the season which resulted in the benching for this very game. Only 2 double digit scores in the games leading up to this game had the managers who drafted him in the top 5 scratching their heads. Well, those who left him in their lineups have most likely won their matchups as Son came on and absolutely annihilated the Leicester D scoring a 30 minute hat-trick en route to a 35.5 point score.
October Winner: Erling Haaland (FWD, Man City) vs Man Utd
Frankly, it is a surprise it took the Norwegian beast this long to be handed a TDS award. I am sure his award-less frustration was what finally made him crack and go Postal in the Manchester Derby. Haaland put in a performance worthy of comparison with some of the greats such as the 4 goal game for Suarez against Norwich or the 4 assist game for Cazorla against Reading. 54 points with three goals and 2 assists is definitely a season high (it lays to rest Bobby's 2G 3A 53-pointer against BOU) which will likely end up being the overall highest single gameweek score of the season. The only man who could possibly beat it: Erling Haaland.
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.
September Winner: Jamie Vardy (FWD; Leicester)
The once top 20 player has finally hit the season when he starts his sharp decline. Unfortunately, no other month of football exemplifies this better than September, when he only started one of three games and ended up scoring 3 points across those 3. 1 point per game. Unfortunately, he has not been much better since. It looks like that this EPL IRL and Fantasy legend will finally ride into the sunset this season. Let us enjoy the good memories and forget however this season goes.
October Winner: Jack Harrison (MID; Leeds)
The Leeds winger started like a house on fire with scores of 22, 14.5 and 30.5 in his first three games. But just like Icarus, he flew too close to the Sun and crashed and burned. His decline since the first three games has been nothing short of precipitous. He has not managed a double digit return since August, he has had 2 shots on target across 6 games in October and only 5 key passes. He has only completed 90 minutes twice in October. The list of startling stats is endless. So much so, that Leeds fans are calling for him to be benched. A true Fall from Grace if ever I have seen one.
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.
September Winner: Emi Buendia (MID; Aston Villa)
Ah, what can we say about Emi? He is an undisputed fantasy darling and for that reason only, he had a draft grade of around the 6th round, but my God the Fall was a sh*tshow for the whole of Villa, especially for our lovely. The aging and frankly very bad Coutinho was preferred to him on numerous occasions and even productive cameos could not convince Gerrard of offering Emi a starting berth. When he did, the attack was so laclustre, even the talismanic Argie, couldn't lift them. The arrival of Emery looks to have helped him massively. Let's hope he kicks on after the World Cup.
October Winner: Wilfred Zaha (FWD; Crystal Palace)
After an electric start to the season in what was widely agreed to be the most difficult run of fixtures in the early part of the EPL, Zaha found a way to hit the brakes. Hard. In the 5 games he played in the month of October, he only managed double digits in one, but probably more crucially, he scored 1 point against then bottom dwellers Leicester, 1 point against permanently shaky Everton and a measly 5 against Southampton. Managers who roster him expected around 50 points, he delivered 7 in 3 games.
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).
September Winner: Philip Billing (MID; Bournemouth)
The box-to-box Dane was a sleeper on draft day having achieved a rare double digit goal, double digit assist season in the Championship last year. However, after failing to crack 10 points in the month of August, his rostered percentage was at an all time low when September rolled around, and he repaid the faith of those who picked him up for the games against Forest and Newcastle. Two goals in two games makes him a perfect streamer.
October Winner: Wout Faes (DEF; Leicester)
The Belgian centre-back has been one of the revelations of the season and the helmsman to guide Leicester's ship away from the bottom of the table. A blip against City notwithstanding, he had double digit scores in the other 5 games in October collecting 4 clean sheets in the process. He looks like one of those all action defenders from lower level teams who do all the work and ghost enough to be a permanent fixture on those managers' starting lineups who are lucky enough to have picked him up.
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!)
September Winner: Nick Pope (GK; Newcastle)
His Holiness got the award solely on the basis of his out-of-this-world performance against Palace. 9 saves and a clean sheet got him to a whopping 26.75 points to take the coveted award, and paper over his goose egg against Bournemouth.
October Winner: Kepa (GK; Chelsea)
Don't Call It a Comeback! Well, do call it a comeback, because with Potter taking residence on the Chelsea bench, Kepa was reinstated as the starting GK for the Blues. A mean feat from the most expensive goalkeeper in the history of football. Joking aside, he had an October to remember until he got injured in the humiliating loss against Brighton. 3 clean sheets on the middle of the month resulted in our very own Draft Genie professing his undying love for the Basque GK, which automatically gets him the award.
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.
September Winner: Kevin de Bruyne (MID; Man City)
Two games, 45 points. Enough said. It is truly a mystery, how KDB, arguably the best player in the EPL and top 3 in the world for the last 5 years gets so little official recognition. This is why we decided to honour him here at TDS. Kevin, we love you, you are Simply Elite.
October Winner: Kieran Trippier (DEF; Newcastle)
I personally doubted that Trips could replicate/continue his insane production before his injury last season. I will be the first to admit I was wrong. The man who will undoubtedly be shoehorned into playing LB for his country has been irresistible for his club. His lowest score for October came against Spurs, where he scored a frankly laughable 10.5. How did you show your face on our fantasy teams the next day, Kieran? 3 games with 20+ scores in a month gets you the Simply Elite award, them's the rules since one mighty AEG walked these fields and Trippier qualifies. What is really frightening is that he managed this amazing month with only 3 clean sheets and 2 assists. He ghosts, keeps clean sheets and gets returns. The full package if ever I have seen one.
Do you agree with our selections? How many from your fantasy teams have been honored/dishonored? And what are your own predictions for next month? Let us know by commenting below or getting in touch on Twitter!
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