My sincerest apologies to all of my peeps out there in fantasy land. The weather has been over me pretty good this week and has pushed back my personal timeline a bit, if you will. The good news that I will share with you all is that I will not allow this hiccup to put a dent in our fantasy time together. The bad news is, I wasn’t able to blast my recommendation to start Brandon Jacobs all over the place. (head shakes because that was not expected and I was being slightly facetious) Fortunately, we still have a plethora of games to choose from in which we can comb through and find some guys that may perform slightly better than normal and some who may underperform a skosh.
Side note: I love the word skosh, and it bothers me every time I type it because it gives me a red underline. Yet, every time I double check because I know Microsoft Word would not be incorrect, Dictionary.com confirms my joy and gives me the definition as reliable as sunrise in San Diego. Thanks Microsoft, for the insecurities.
Ok, we are at week 6, The Falcons and Dolphins are on bye week, and Julio Jones is out for the season. Ugh. Still stinks to see that written out.
Tony Romo vs WAS: You can read more about Romo in Stock Watch this week, but to summarize a well written piece, Romo is hot. Dez Bryant is hot. Terrance Williams is hot. Miles Austin is, well almost healthy. This week Romo gets a Washington Redskins team that has not stopped anybody through the air. They have given up roughly 300 yards and over 2 TDs per and the Romo is coming off a 500 yard explosion. Get Romo in the lineup.
Chad Henne at DEN: So the spread of the game is nearly 28 points. How long until we expect the Broncos to be leading by multiple scores in this game, five minutes? Eight minutes? Point being, there will be roughly 50+ minutes of game time in which the Jaguars will be throwing the football. Henne has Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts on the outside so he is not void of weapons. The Broncos are giving up, you ready for this number, 347 yards passing per game! This is fantasy football folks remember? Garbage stats are as good as gourmet.
Other QBs to feel good about: Andrew Luck at SD, Ben Roethlisberger at NYJ, Robert Griffin III at DAL
Broncos Running Backs vs JAC: No seriously, all of them. What better time to get your rookie some run and Ronnie Hillman some quality reps than when you have a whole half up 20+ points? It’s a 28 point spread folks, I know “any given Sunday” blah, blah, blah. Have fun with that, start your Broncos.
Frank Gore vs ARI: The 49ers are still really good, let’s not mistake ourselves. As we discussed above, Colin Kaepernick is struggling to find reliable weapons outside, well, run the ball. The Cardinals have a great run D, I won’t sugar coat that, but the 49ers still have arguably the best o-line in football and when they want to run they can. They will.
Zac Stacy at HOU: I sometimes hate to put lower end guys that I have going personally because I don’t want to be biased but I legitimately like this choice. The Texans have been quite porous in their rush defense this season but had Stacy not had the wind knocked out of him last week, he would have topped 100 yards in my opinion. The Rams are looking for a spark, and their rookie runner looks like he might be ready to provide that. I really liked Daryl Richardson coming into the season, but it looks like his skills are best suited in a complementary role. Stacy could be the guy, and this could be the breakout match up prove it.
Other RBs to feel good about: Danny Woodhead vs IND, Giovani Bernard at BUF, DeAngelo Williams at MIN
Justin Blackmon at DEN: See Chad Henne. Oh and I’ll add this: Going back to week 11 last season when Blackmon broke out with his 236 yard game, and including this past week, he is averaging over 93 receiving yards per game. By the way, that average includes one stinker (a 1 catch for 9 yard game). Did I say see Chad Henne?
Torrey Smith vs GB: Welcome to the cusp of elite Torrey. Flacco is awful, but you are becoming a star, just in case the name hasn’t followed the production quite yet.
Pierre Garcon at DAL: The waiter seems to be a little under the radar this year. Maybe it’s due to his offseason injury talk, maybe because of all the RG3 injury stuff, I haven’t quite been able to pinpoint the exact source. Needless to say, we as owners need to take notice. Despite our consensus that RG3 has started the season quite rusty, Garcon is averaging over 7 catches per game. He has scored twice in 4 games, and is averaging over 84 yards receiving. That is with a RUSTY RG3. Coming off the bye week, Garcon and the Skins get a Cowboys defense that makes Swiss cheese look solid. They give up the second most yards per game, over 325, and just got torched for over 50 points last week.
TY Hilton at SD: It’s time. The breakout is upon us.
Other WRs to feel good about: Cecil Shorts at DEN, Wes Welker vs JAC, Vincent Brown vs IND
Greg Olsen at MIN: Olsen has had a fairly decent start to his season. He has not had less than 54 yards receiving and has had at least 6 targets in every game. Unfortunately he has only scored once and hasn’t topped 84 yards. So far, he has been the prototypical middle of the road tight end. This week, however, he goes up against a Minnesota defense that gives up the second most points to fantasy tight ends in the NFL. Olsen is due for a score, he gets one this week.
Colin Kaepernick vs ARI: It might be crazy to say this, but Kap might be a sit recommendation until Michael Crabtree returns. If you take out the one anomaly, week 1, the 49ers signal caller is averaging 139 yards passing. Wait what? (jinx) Yeah, you read that right, 139 yards passing per game. He went touchdownless in two of them and it’s not like he’s making up for this deficiency on the ground. Kap is only averaging 30 yards on the ground per game with zero TDs and that includes an 87 yard outburst against the Hawks in a route. The Arizona defense is a solid unit, and Kap just doesn’t have the weapons needed to excel right now.
Nick Foles at TB: Maybe Foles comes out mad for his job and just slangs the rock all over the place. Maybe, I buy one lotto ticket and win Mega Millions. See the connection? Shooting for the moon doesn’t always get you into space. Foles isn’t mobile, shocking, and the Eagles downfield weapons are limited. Desean Jackson is having a Pro Bowl season to this point but will have Revis Island on him and will be the main focus of the Bucs secondary. Foles does not seem as adept at creating explosive plays which should limit his upside. Keep on the bench.
Other QBs to feel nervous about: Andy Dalton at BUF, Sam Bradford at HOU, Alex Smith vs OAK
Eddie Lacy at BAL: Lacy has yet to really break out so far this season, which is a little ironic considering both James Starks and Johnathan Franklin have had big games in their own right, but I still believe Lacy’s time is coming. This week however, he goes up against a Ravens defense that is number one in the league at limiting RB scoring in fantasy. You might get a TD depending on down and location of course, but yardage will certainly not be there. Running back depth is clearly shallow so if you don’t have other options, roll Lacy out with the hope of that TD, but keep expectations for a big game in check.
Le’Veon Bell at NYJ: Another young back, like Lacy, who could be trending upward and yet Bell had more of a breakout in his only audition so far this season with his two touchdown performance before last week’s bye. Bell is clearly the workhorse in Pitt but that is where the good news currently ends. Bell could only muster a 3.6 yards per carry average against a Minnesota defense giving up an average over 4. This week, Bell goes up against a Jets defense only allowing 3.0 yards per carry. Same recommendation as Lacy, hope for the TD, but keep high end hopes low.
Trent Richardson at SD: 60 yards. Richardson’s highest rushing total on the year. 3.6 yards per carry. Richardson’s highest YPC average on the year. 6. Yards receiving since joining the Colts. The Chargers have only given up 2 touchdowns on the ground so far this year and that is where Richardson has done his damage, if you can call it that. There is no news about an injury, but Richardson has not looked like the superstar in the making many tabbed him to be.
Other RBs to feel nervous about: Maurice Jones-Drew at DEN, Chris Johnson at SEA, Bilal Powell vs PIT
Big Name Bust of the Week:
Calvin Johnson at CLE: He unexpectedly sat out last week but if he is in Detroit’s line up you sure as heck or putting him in your fantasy line up. But he won’t be 100%. He will be going up against Joe Haden. Haden has been exquisite in pass coverage this season in limiting opponents number one options. In 5 games so far this year, AJ Green, Torrey Smith, Mike Wallace, Greg Jennings, and Stevie Johnson have a combined: 20 catches for 213 yards (42 per game) and zero touchdowns. Now, sure Calvin is a different beast, but a limited Calvin?
All STL Receivers at HOU: Austin Pettis, meh. Tavon Austin, eh. Brian Quick, uh ehhh. 134 yards per game through the air is what the Houston Texans defense is allowing. They are coming off back to back losses, are embarrassed by what is happening with their QB and I have a feeling they will be fired up to right the ship at home. None of Pettis, Austin, or Quick strike fear enough to encourage me to recommend these guys in this match up. No thank you.
Denarious Moore at KC: Have you seen the KC defense yet this season? Probably not. They are for real folks. Brandon Flowers, Eric Berry and co are locking down that secondary and their pass rush is a real problem. Terrelle Pryor could end up with a solid day, due to his legs (Ryan Fitzpatrick actually scrambled for 50 yards last week) but his passing could be limited. That could be detrimental for Moore’s numbers. Moore will certainly draw all of the attention for KC’s defense and I’m not sure if Oakland is dynamic and versatile enough to offset that and allow Moore to excel.
Other WRs to feel nervous about: Larry Fitzgerald at SF, Anquan Boldin vs ARI, Terrance Williams vs WAS
Kyle Rudolph vs CAR: Sticking in the same game for my tight end section this week. Conversely to Minnesota’s ineptitude against tight ends is Carolina’s success. Carolina has given up 9 catches for 85 yards in 4 games to opposing tight ends. Kyle Rudolph has 12 receptions for 103 yards in 4 games. Ok everyone… let’s play the 2+2 game, shall we??