The Gut Check No.478: The Devil's Advocate Top 50

Matt Waldman goes to the dark side to test your faith in the top 50 players on the board. 

Please allow me to introduce myself.

I'm the dark angel on the left side of Sigmund Bloom's couch.

Two years ago, I posted a test of faith that instilled spine-tingling, nerve-jangling dread into the soul of every fantasy player who read it in early August. It left the weaker among you so afraid to draft that you ran crying to that beatific, tie-dyed little angel, Bloom for reassurance in his land of bright and shiny toys.

You're hypnotized by Bloom's rays of sunlight and slurp down his rainbow-flavored takes like parched little boys and girls after they chase down the neighborhood snowcone truck on summer's day that's hotter than...

My living room.

As much as I love the heat, I favor darkness even more. It's the best way to see the details of the game.

I live in those details.

(I hope you guessed my name.)

Calling me evil is so simplistic. I'm the harbinger of tests. An advocate for doubt. Andy Dalton's patron. Yes, A.J. Green, you continue to be cursed—you signed the deal with one of my minions.

You may not want me, but you need me to put your beliefs on trial. If you still like these players on David Dodds' Top 50 PPR Draft List after I get through with them, there's no reason you shouldn't draft them. Otherwise, their names should never cross your lips in 2019.

The Gut Check's devil's advocate (50-1)

50. Andrew Luck: Calf injuries take a notoriously long time to heal compared to the injury's initial assessment states. Luck may have a better pocket than ever before but isn't it just like the Devil to give someone exactly what they've wished for at the exact moment when they've lost the opportunity to use it?

From whom do you think Murphy learned that law?

Luck is a good pocket passer but it won't do much good if he can't drop back. Even if he can, will he avoid the pressure that reaches even the best-formed pockets 5-6 times a game?

Chad Kelly is holding his own after signing a deal with the Colts. It's also rumored that Kelly inked a contract with a man on a black horse with red eyes a few days earlier.

49. Mark Ingram II: Turning 30 at year's end, Ingram missed four games last year after two consecutive years where he finally played full 16-game seasons. Before that, Ingram missed 18 games during his first 5 campaigns.

While it appears that Ingram has learned to limit potential injuries within his control, is that really true? Ingram's career-high for rushing attempts came with a 230-carry workload in 2017. Prior to that, Ingram only finished a 16-game season with at least 200 carries once in his pro career.

Whether it was Frank Gore or LeSean McCoy, Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman likes workhorses. Frank Gore earned carry counts of 282, 259, 276, and 255 between 2011-2014 in Roman's offense.

McCoy earned 203 carries in 12 games in 2015 and 234 carries in 15 games in 2016. Harbaugh

So does John Harbaugh who rode Ray Rice from 2009-13 and then gave journeyman scatback Justin Forsett 235 carries in 2014. Since then, Harbaugh's backs haven't been able to stay healthy enough to earn the desired workload. The closest was Alex Collins' 212 carries during a 15-game stretch in 2017.

Ingram earned 230 carries—and 288 touches—in 2017 with the Saints. It's by far, the heaviest workload Ingram has earned since his sophomore year at Alabama when he touched the ball 303 times for the Crimson tide in 2009.

Ingram may want to be the every-down back at least once during his pro career and the Ravens seem like a great match. Can he carry the load as often as he'd like?

As my dear old friend Murph learned, you often get exactly what you want only after you can't use it...

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