I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving and the decent football we got to watch throughout the day. Due to the holiday and some traveling, this week I will be focusing more on the games that have more significance and only glossing over the lesser matchups.
Minnesota Vikings at Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons could catch a couple of breaks this week. First, it looks like they’ll avoid Adrian Peterson, although it would have been interesting to see what he could have done against their great run defense. Second, they may have Julio Jones back from his hamstring injury, which is great because they are facing one of the worst secondaries in the league. While we know the Falcons like to have Michael Turner carry the offense, this could be a week where they decide to throw it a little more, especially since the Vikings have done a solid job against backs. Minnesota looks like a fantasy wasteland right now if Peterson out, so outside of Percy Harvin, I would only consider using Toby Gerhart from this team and that would only be for volume purposes.
Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals
The Brown backfield looks like it could have both Montario Hardesty and Peyton Hillis [...]
It is an ugly slate of games this week, but we had some interesting matchups last week and things did not turn out so well. Let us jump into the Week Eleven action.
Carolina Panthers at Detroit Lions
Cam Newton is coming off one of his worst games in his young career, and admitted the Titans did a great job getting pressure on him, which the team didn’t react to well. He better be ready from more of the same this week against an even better Lion pass rush. Newton has been able to put up numbers in tough matchups, so I’m not too worried about him, but I might lower my expectations just a little bit. Neither one of these teams has run the ball with any consistent success this season, and I don’t expect that to change anytime soon. It’s interesting to note that Kevin Smith was already working ahead of Keiland Williams in practice, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see him utilized a bit more in this game. I can understand if you’re a little worried about Matthew Stafford. I’m not there yet based on an ugly game in bad conditions, but I will be concerned if [...]
The halfway point of the season is already behind us and we are coming down the stretch in the fantasy regular season. Now is not the time to get cute. If you need to make a bold move to get back in it, do it. Time is running out in a hurry.
And now, my thoughts on Week Ten…
New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons
We know the Falcons like to like Michael Turner carry their offense, and while that is certainly possible in this game, they’ll have to throw it and throw it well. Julio Jones had a very Randy Moss-like 3/131/2 with scores of 50 and 80 yards last week, but we haven’t seen much consistency out of their passing game all year. However, Jones is the type of player they’ve lacked in recent seasons, but his big-play ability is what can allow them to get back into games quickly, which was a missing ingredient for last year’s team. The Saint passing attack should be fine since the Falcon pass rush hasn’t been very good and their secondary looks beatable. What this means is a possible fantasy bonanza, and we could certainly use one. A key to this game could [...]
More than a few intriguing games on the Week Nine slate and it should make for an interesting week in the world of fantasy football. I am back to help you navigate through the murky fantasy landscape with my thoughts on all 14 games.
New York Jets at Buffalo Bills
The Bills aren’t going away, but I have a feeling they’ll be in trouble this week. With Stevie Johnson as the lone receiver the Jets have to worry about, look for Darrelle Revis to be on him with the team focused on stopping, or at least containing Fred Jackson. If the Jets can continue to get pressure, they can force Ryan Fitzpatrick to make mistakes, especially if Johnson is stuck on Revis Island. The Jets have talked about getting Joe McKnight involved more all season long, and with an offense that lacks firepower, it might not be a bad idea, although I wouldn’t expect that to happen right away just because they had a bye week to think about it. The Jets appear to be getting back to the plan that’s helped them win a lot of games over the last two years, and that’s relying on their ground game to [...]
Amazingly, we are already more than halfway done the fantasy regular season in most leagues. Hopefully, you have reshuffled your personal depth charts if necessary and are adjusting expectations accordingly. Here are my thoughts on Week Eight…
Arizona Cardinals at Baltimore Ravens
Last week I said trusting Joe Flacco was a “risky proposition” yet still thought he’d do well because of what appeared to be a great matchup. The Jaguars came to play and Flacco was predictably terrible. He’s in a similar situation this week, but the Cardinals have absolutely nothing to hang your hat on when it comes to their defense. The Raven offense should be able to go nuts in this game, but that’s assuming Flacco hits Torrey Smith on the shots that should be available downfield, and we know that’s no guarantee. The one player I’m not worried about is Ray Rice, who didn’t see enough touches in a close game last week because OC Cam Cameron once again tried to make things too complicated instead of handing his best player the ball. You’ll notice I spent much of this game on the Raven side of the ball because the Cardinals do absolutely nothing for me. Larry Fitzgerald [...]
Quarterback changes and player movement dominated the headlines this week and should make for a very interesting set of games. Without further ado, let us take a loot at the thirteen matchups.
Washington Redskins at Carolina Panthers
The fans we actually chanting “We Want Beck” last week, and that sums up Rex Grossman’s career in a nutshell. Don’t expect the Redskin offense to change very much with John Beck under center, although it would be nice to know that Ryan Torain was starting AND getting a decent amount of carries. However, when it comes to the Shanahans, you need to reevaluate the RB situation on a weekly basis. I’m fully expecting the Panthers to target DeAngelo Hall, so expect Steve Smith to be on the end of a few deep balls in this one.
Seattle Seahawks at Cleveland Browns
I never understood why the Browns were seriously contemplating giving Peyton Hillis a nice contract extension when they have his replacement in Montario Hardesty, especially with Hillis’ physical running style. It hasn’t mattered who has been in the Brown backfield since they continue to struggle on the ground. Greg Little appears to be approaching the level of safe #3 WR and he nearly scored [...]
Injuries and six teams being off never make things easy, but hopefully I can help you navigate your way through all thirteen of the Week Six games.
Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons
If Cam Newton can do what he did last week, I’ll have no worries about him the rest of the way. He doesn’t need to throw for a lot of yards as long as he continues to be active near the goal line, and that appears to be exactly what will happen. If you own DeAngelo Williams or Jonathan Stewart, they are probably good flex plays this week, but since they are splitting touches and will probably need a longer TD to score, you have to readjust any expectations going forward. Matt Ryan continues to hold back this offense and while they should still do well this week, they won’t reach their full potential or at least achieve what they want with him throwing ducks downfield. Michael Turner should be a nice play in this game only because he’ll get enough volume to produce, but if they fall behind, he’s never going to produce like a #2 RB.
Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals
Cedric Benson still doesn’t seem that happy with [...]
Going forward, we will try to address any news of note with fantasy analysis in a quick blog entry like this one.
The Jets traded WR Derrick Mason to the Texans in exchange for a conditional 7th-round conditional draft pick. Mason had been a bust in his short time with the Jets, catching just 13/115 on 21 targets in five games, which was good for a measly 2.3 FPG (111th at the WR position). Mason was apparently unhappy with his role and that came to head in Week Five, when he played just five snaps in the loss to the Patriots. Although he’s 37, Mason can still be a reliable chain-mover for the Texans, especially since Jacoby Jones hasn’t developed into the player they’d hoped (1/11 against the Raiders in Week Five). Houston realizes they have a good chance to make some noise in the AFC this year, so bringing in a veteran like Mason was probably a cheap, safe move to give them some stability at the WR position until Andre Johnson returns from his hamstring injury. Jones and Kevin Walter will remain the starters for now, but look for Mason, who has good hands and is known for his [...]
We enter the first week of byes with six teams off, which certainly makes lineup decisions tougher. It is time to take a look at the 13 games in Week Five.
Philadelphia Eagles at Buffalo Bills
I’m sure not many people expected this game to mean much before the season started, and even less expected the Bills to be at 3-1 and the Eagles to be sitting at 1-3. There’s nothing to worry about when it comes to the Eagle offense, as the Bills don’t pose much of a threat with their defense, even with CB Terrence McGee returning. The big issue for the Eagles is how their defense will handle this Buffalo offense. For whatever reason, Philly tried to use Nnamdi Asomugha in a variety of different ways, and it’s failed miserably. They need to let him get back to just being one of the best cover corners in the league. If they do, Stevie Johnson could be in trouble. Luckily for the Bills they have other weapons, like Fred Jackson, who should have a very good game against an Eagle defense that continues to look awful in their attempts to stop the run.
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers
Apparently, Cam [...]
The injury bug seem to be affecting more players than usual this early in the season, and has caused quite a few headaches for fantasy owners. Let us hope it is a little less ugly out there in Week Four.
Carolina Panthers at Chicago Bears
The Bears are throwing the ball a ton, yet it’s not worth starting any of their WRs. It’s Matt Forte or bust in Chicago, and even Jay Cutler knows nothing is going to change. The way he’s getting hit, I’m officially worried about him becoming shell-shocked to the point that he turns into Marc Bulger in his final years in St. Louis. Bulger didn’t want to play football by the time he was done in St. Louis and why would Cutler want to keep going when it’s probably not going to get any better. Thanks for ruining a great talent, Mike Martz. The Carolina backfield continues to be a total conundrum and probably won’t be any easier to figure out after playing this tough Bear run defense. Let’s throw out Cam Newton’s performance in the monsoon last week. Can he get it done against this defense? I have my doubts, but it will be an interesting [...]