This week's #JackInTheBox, as always, focuses on a player from a team in the bottom 5 of the Prem who also has less than 3% ownership. It's the "differential's differential", as I've seen it referred to. This week's fixture list for the bottom 5 is juicy, juicy, juicy, as 4 teams in the bottom 5 square off against one another. I can't imagine a better scenario for future #JackInTheBoxes, and having immersed myself in the bottom 5 for the past few gameweeks, am literally buzzing with anticipation to see how things shake out.
Sunderland (the only squad to face a non-bottom 5 opponent this week) are away to Villa, and I don't see much in it for a Black Cats squad still struggling to find their footing, especially with the likes of our greatest American hero Guzan protecting a Villa goal that may or may not see much action come gametime. Crystal Palace are away to fellow bottom 5 squad Norwich, while Fulham and West Ham, 18th and 17th respectively, face off in a match at Upton Park that I for one hope I get to see in its entirety this weekend.
For this week's #JackInTheBox, I gotta tell ya, I continue to be intrigued by this Norwich squad. After quite an impressive campaign last time around, I remain surprised to see them searching for form, especially considering the investment made during the summer break, and as long as they stay in the bottom 5 they will continue to receive the lion's share of my bewildered attention. Put simply, I don't consider them a bottom 5 side, and still don't expect them to be there for long (come on Van Wolfswinkel, you're a #JackInTheBox in the making once you heal up).
In some ways this week's #JackInTheBox was difficult and in some ways it was easy. If you know me by now, you know I'm not a big fan of people who display poor sportsmanship. At the same time, while the rest of the footballing world honours a legendary footballer still gracing the pitches of the Premier League on his 40th birthday, I'm also not a big fan of people who shag their brother's wife; especially when that person is a Premier League footballer on one of the most famous teams in the history of football influencing millions of children around the world over the course of 2 decades. No, it has nothing to do with football, but has everything to do with the man himself.
In other ways, as I've said, my #JackInTheBox choice this week is quite easy. With an underperforming but quality Norwich side reeling from injuries to two of their midfield mainstays in Snodgrass and Pilkington, it will be up to my GW 13 #JackInTheBox (alongside my GW11 #JackInTheBox) to bear the weight of expectation against a Crystal Palace side showing renewed strength in defence but who I don't believe will be able to keep Norwich at bay for a full 90 minutes, Tony Pulis or no Tony Pulis.
Walt's GW13 FPL #JackInTheBox: Leroy Fer
Yes, despite leaving a bad taste in my mouth with his unsportsmanlike shenanigans at the end of the Cardiff match a few weeks ago (if you don't remember, look it up, it was quite interesting), I'm going with Mr. Leroy Fer as this week's #JackInTheBox. Fer, after plying his trade for Eredivisie sides Feyenoord and FC Twente, moved to Norwich during this past offseason and has been a mainstay of the Norwich midfield since gameweek 2. Of the 3 times he's made his way onto the scoresheet out of 11 games played, 2 have been within the past 2 weeks and I look to him being at the center of things flowing through the Norwich attack this weekend.
He also, including the stats for the injured Snoddy and Pilkington, tops the Norwich side in both FPL points scored and EA Sports PPI for the season to date. At 5.8m you'll pay for the potential he provides, but with upcoming fixtures against W Brom, Sunderland, Fulham and Palace (again) among the next 7, he could be worth getting and keeping around til gameweek 20 and possibly beyond.
In a weekend where the bottom 5 will be at the center of attention, I'm really looking forward to seeing how things pan out, and if Mr. Fer comes through as I hope and predict, I may take a shot at this famous Robot Dance that last week's #JITB has become so well-known for.
Have a great gameweek everyone...looking forward to your tales of huge FPL points and hope to be able to share one of my own.
Signing off from PlayDate Land