Tag Archives: Giants

2013: Start ‘em or Sit ‘em Week 11

As always we try to stick away from the obvious “start Calvin Johnson” etc, but we are always open to fielding specific lineup questions if you leave them in the comments below.  In the same breathe, we aren’t going to tell you to sit Frank Gore because they are playing a team that has a strong defense.  That would be a waste of everyone’s time.

This week.  Two parts.  Thursday and then an update Friday.

Colts at Titans

Start ’em – Colts D: You think they are embarrassed after the egg they laid at home last week?  You’re damn right they are. I think they get after Ryan Fitzpatrick in this game big time.

Sit ’em Ryan Fitzpatrick: He’s a turn over machine. He is average at best. He is Ryan Fitzpatrick.  Sure he went to Harvard, but he’s still illiterate when it comes to reading a defense.

Jets at Bills

Start ’em RB Chris Ivory: The Bills are 22nd in the league in run D.  The Jets will pound the rock all game.  Ivory gets enough carries in this one to grab a starting spot in this week’s lineup

Sit ’em WR Stevie Johnson: After watching last week’s game, he and E.J. Manual are just not in sync.  The latest reports are that he may not even suit up for this one as he is struggling with a groin injury. I think there are better options at this point.  Keep an eye on this because if they start clicking, Johnson could be a WR3 down the stretch.

Sit’em RB CJ Spiller: Spiller is going to be a matchup guy for the rest of 2013.  It’s the disappointing reality you have to face with him,  and fooling yourself will only damage your fantasy team.  When the Bills played the Jets earlier in the season Spiller managed under 11 total yards of offense. He’s a little healthier now, but the Jets rush defense is just as formidable.  Plus Buffalo coaches were quoted this week as saying they view both Spiller and Fred Jackson as #1 RB’s.   Umm…nothing is good about CJ this week.

Ravens at Bears

Sit ’em RB Ray Rice: So here’s the deal.  The Bears are second worst in the league in Run Defense.  The Raven are 30th in run offense.  Something has got to give.  There is no way I am starting this guy anymore unless I have to, but if you have to, this is the week to do it.

Start ’em WR Alshon Jeffery:  In 5 of his 6 games, Jeffery has gone over 10 fantasy points in both standard PPR and non-PPR leagues, he’s topped 100 yards in 4 of the 6, and he was targeted an insane 18 times last weekend.  Dude is red hot, and now that Cutler will miss at least another week – that means Jeffery should remain high in the mix because Cutler sometimes only has eyes for Brandon Marshall…welp not this week.  Jeffery is a Wr2 this weeks and this is our little shout out for him maturing into the weapon we thought he was.

Browns at Bengals

Start ’em WR Marvin Jones:  Look up what Joe Hayden did to AJ Green the last time these teams met.  See? (7 catches for only 51 yards)  That is why you are starting Marvin Jones.  He will see an uptick in targets this week and is a WR3 start.

Sit ’em RB Chris Ogbonnaya: Word is the coming out of their bye the Browns would like to shift more of their workload to Obonnaya.  It makes sense since Willis McGahee is breaking down, and Chris can in theory catch passes out on the edge. Ogbonnaya isn’t bad perse, painfully average maybe, but the real problem here is the Bengals rush defense has a way of smothering players.  Obonnaya represents a very low flex play option this weekend – very low.

Raiders at Texans

Start ’em –  Texans D:  If Matt McGloin starts, Texans D all day.  If Pryor starts then the Texans are still an above average play – IF the team hasn’t quit amid all the turmoil (Kubiak stroke, Foster injury, terrible record etc) to me this is a fairly big sized IF…but you can’t anticipate them quitting until it actually happens so ride them this week and see how they play.

Sit ‘em – RB Rashard Jennings: He has had 2 good games in a row against bad Defenses.  Regardless of rankings, the Texans front is formidable.   I don’t think he gets the yards needed for an effective start in this one.

Cardinals at Jaguars

Start ‘em – Cardinals Defense:   OK.  Ya, I am recommending another defense, but let’s be real here.  The Jags O-line is average on their best day and the Cardinals can really bring the heat.   If the Cards get up by a 2 scores in this game look out.  They will pin their ears back and blitz like hell.

Start ‘em – RB Andre Ellington:  He is a virtually an every week flex start.  If he got in the end zone more, he would be surefire starter in all formats.  Mendenhall has been struggling all season, maybe finally Ellington gets the lion share of the carries.

Lions at Steelers

Start ‘em – Joique Bell: Now I don’t love this play at all.  It all has to do with injuries to the Lions WR’s.  Johnson has said he’ll play this Sunday and his knee issues are just maintenance, but Bell could be a nice flex option if the Lions get up early and need to control the clock. As Burleson won’t play this week either, the Lions could decide to keep it conservative with the lead.  This is a tepid flex start that could become hot if Megatron suffers a setback and can’t transform into a football player on Sunday.   

Redskins at Eagles 

Start ‘em – Yes, TE Jordan Reed and WR Pierre Garcon are every week starts from here on out.  Watch some of the games.  These are the only 2 guys that RG3 looks for. 

Start ’em QB Nick Foles: I called WR Riley Cooper last week, and this week I’m fully endorsing Nick Foles.  My Foles love was unrequited b/c the Eagles kept jerking him in and out of the lineup, and his concussion slowed things down. But you simply cannot argue with 16 TD’s and 0 Int’s….even the most skeptical of fans have to open their eyes at this point.  Foles is an every week starter as a top 10 fantasy QB the rest of the season.  Against a terrible Redskins’ pass defense he may very well be the highest scoring QB in week 10.   So if you’re someone choosing between “Nick Foles or”this week…it’s Nick Foles.  No question.

Falcons at Buccaneers 

Start ‘em – RB Brian Leonard:  I don’t love Brian Leonard’s talent at all, but he will get the majority of the carries at home vs an iffy Falcons D.  The Bucs Oline did some work last week against the Dolphins and Seahawks back to back.  Let’s make that three straight.

Sit ‘em – RB Steven Jackson: They say when RB’s lose it, they just lose it.  There is nothing gradual about it.   Steven, you have been awesome for many years, but I am afraid, you might have lost it.  If the line play improves there is hope Steven, I haven’t given up on you fully, but you aren’t a start until you show me something.

Chargers at Dolphins

Start ’em WR Rishard Matthews: A lot of people will look at last week’s 120 yard 2 Td performance by Matthews out of no where and think that they’ve missed their chance to hit that lotto ticket.   It’s true that Matthews has been virtually invisible since he was drafted 2 years ago.  But it’s my bet that Matthews is a better player than his limited playing time warranted, and now with the season ending injury to WR Brandon Gibson, I’m hoping that last week is the start of Tannehill looking for him often.  Matthews should be viewed as a very risky play week to week, but I like him here against a Chargers defense that is terrible against the pass.  (28th in the league).  I think Matthews could post another 100 yard effort – but the TD’s seem optional this week.

Start ’em WR Keenan Allen: Miami is not as bad as San Diego against the pass, but they have their holes.  In his last 5 games, Allen has broken 100 yards 3 times and has 3 TD’s – and this is more about saluting his effort than telling you something you don’t know: while a 40 yard dud like last weekend is possible every now and then, Allen has worked his way to low level WR2 at this point – and he seems an advisable start here.

Niners at Saints

Sit ’em QB Colin Kapernick: This isn’t an overreaction in my mind to last week’s disaster with Carolina.  Kap will probably have better #’s against a weaker Saints’ defense, but consider the Saints pass defense is ranked 3rd in the NFL right now.   Then consider TE Vernon Davis is still not taking contact in practice after suffering a concussion last week.  If Davis can’t go, or is limited – it takes an anemic pass offense and puts it on life support.   Kapernick will be able to get some of it back for you with rushing yards, but if the Saints say break the 20 point mark…how will the Niners try to keep up?   It’s fashionable to be down on Colin this season, and while it may not be his fault, and it may be overblown….I think this week you put him on your fantasy bench.   Hopefully brighter days are ahead with Davis getting healthier and maybe Michael Crabtree returning.

Packers at the Giants

Start ’em WR Jarrett Boykin: You may think that advising a WR from a team with its 3rd string QB on the road in his 1st full NFL start is risky.  Consider however, that QB Scott Tolzein managed to target Boykin over and over again vs the Eagles for a total of 8 catches for 112 yards.  The Giants defense is still awful, don’t let games against Josh Freeman, Matt Barkley, and Terrell Pryor fool you – they haven’t faced an NFL QB in a month.  Tolzein will probably get beat and beaten up, because he’s not any good at this point in his career – but just like against the Eagles last week there’s nothing stopping Boykin from juicy garbage fantasy time points.

Start ’em RB Andre Brown: In the preseason I was adamant that Brown was the better player than RB David Wilson – and here we are 11 weeks later- the Giants having gone through nearly that many RB’s, and it’s Andre Brown’s time.  Brown may never be durable, he may never break off a long TD run, but he can simply put his head down and move the chains.  Hopefully you followed our advice and picked him up off of waivers before last week when he came out for a 30 carry 118 yard 1 TD season debut.   The Packers have an above average run defense, but the Giants have to try and ride Brown because their passing game is just not clicking.  Brown will have even bigger days to come, but you can consider him a very high end flex play/low end RB2 this weekend.

 Chiefs Broncos

Sit ‘em –  WR Dwanye Bowe:   Regardless of the arrest, he was going to be on my sit list.  He has shown NOTHING all year.  Aside from some garbage yards, if the Chiefs are down early, I don’t see him producing much at all.  He hasn’t done it all year.  He isn’t going to start now.

Vikings Seahawks

Sit ‘em – TE John Carlson:  He had a career game last week.  He also played a Redskin D that is having problems with their pass D.   If you need to start him, I get it.  Times are tough in TE land.  Pursue other options unless you are stuck.   Last year Christian Ponder played in Seattle and he through for under 100 yards.   I don’t see why this game is going to be any different.

Start ‘em – WR Golden Tate:  Tate has been playing great the past few weeks.  He seems to have Russell Wilson’s confidence.  He is great after the catch and high points the ball as well as anyone in the league.  Regardless of Harvin coming back, Tate will be the #1 in Seattle for the rest of the year.

Pats Carolina

Start ‘em – RB Deangelo Williams:   Carolina is going to pound the rock all game.  DeWilly is going to end up splitting carries in this game, but he has the most speed of any of the backs in the Panthers backfield.   I would expect a game similar to last week.  Which is good for a flex start.


:By Ron & Mike

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2013: Start ‘em or Sit ‘em Week 10

As always we try to stick away from the obvious “start Calvin Johnson” etc, but we are always open to fielding specific lineup questions if you leave them in the comments below.  In the same breathe, we aren’t going to tell you to sit Frank Gore because they are playing a team that has a strong defense.  That would be a waste of everyone’s time.

Why should you listen to us?  Look at our track record.  WE CALLED RILEY COOPER LAST WEEK!  If that isn’t enough to get you believing in this blog, nothing is.

This week there are a lot of obvious starts. Without  further ado…

 

Washington at Minnesota

Start ’em – WR Pierre Garcon:  my love affair with the man named Pierre continues for anther week.

Sit ’em – The Defenses: Neither are playing particularly well.  Unless you are in a bye week bind I would surely look elsewhere. At this point even carrying either defense on your team is debatable.

Seattle at Atlanta

Start ’em – WR Harry Douglas:  Small shifty WR’s give the big Seattle CB’s the most trouble.  I think he as an OK game.  Nothing great, but a solid WR3 start.

Start ’em – WR Doug Baldwin : He is a much better real life football player than Fantasy, but with Harvin and Rice out, he will have the opportunity to have a good game.  Also ATL’s defense is allowing opposing QB’s an over 100 rating. He and Golden Tate could do very well this game.

Detroit at Chicago

Start ’em – WR Alshon Jeffery : He is becoming nearly an every week Flex start.  I thought he might miss a step with McCown manning the control, but he didn’t. Who would have thunk that?

Sit ’em – Detriot WR’s other than Calvin Johnson: Look elsewhere unless you are in a bye week.   I dont think  Durham, Burleson or any other WR they trot out can produce consistently to deserve a start.  Only if you are in the most dire of situations.

 

Philadelphia at Green Bay

Start ’em – WR Jordy Nelson:  I think he will be the #1 target of Seneca Wallace.   He looked his way often last week and should continue to do so. With Rodgers he was a WR2, now a WR3/ Flex and still a solid start.

Sit ’em – Green Bay Def: Clay Matthews might be back but he will have a club instead of a hand. I have a feeling that the Eagles will put up some yards and points in this game.  Enough of both to make this a shaky start.

Jacksonville at Tennessee

Start ’em – WR Cecil Shorts: He is a better than average start this week.  Shorts has been dinged up and has been inconsistent.  This week, as the clear #1 in Jax, I think he sees a good number of targets in a surprisingly close AFC South Battle.

Start ’em – RB Shonn Green:  Now this is a bye week flex start, but the guy got 9 carries last week and scored a TD.  If you are in a bye week or injury bind, Greene will be able to help out.  If he is on your waiver wire, get him now because most pickings are slim.

St. Louis at Indianapolis

Start ’em – TY Hilton: Holy Hell, if you aren’t starting this guy yet do yourself a favor and start him.  Where have you been if you haven’t been starting him? WR2 with upside. Must start every week.  After this week you wont see him on this list because it will be elementary.

 

Oakland at NY Giants

Start ’em – QB Eli Manning:  He has been a turn over machine all year.   He hasn’t been good at all, but the Raiders are vulnerable.  See what Nick Foles did to them?  I wouldn’t expect that, but I would expect 250 and 2 TDs at the minimum.

 

Buffalo at Pittsburgh

Start ’em – WR Stevie Johnson:  E.J. Manual is back, Steelers D is terrible. I would expect a good number of targets for Mr. Johnson.

 

Cincinnati at Baltimore

Start ’em – QB Joe Flacco: Baltimore ‘s line is terrible and they cant run the ball.  What to do?  Air it out! No all-world DT Geno Adkins will help as well.

 

Carolina at San Francisco

Sit ’em – Panthers Def:  They have been awesome most of the year.  Going into SF is a tough task.  If you have a solid backup D, you might want to think about going with them this week.   If the Panthers can play well in SF, they become an every week start.

Houston at Arizona

Start ’em – Arizona Def:  The Cards blitz like hell. They are one of the highest percentage blitz teams in the league. Case Keenum is a nice story, but I think he struggles some  under the heavy pressure of the Cards D.

Sit ’em – RB Andre Ellington: I know he is a hot commodity and is playing well, but the Cards line is pretty terrible and the Texans line is pretty great.  Not the worst play as a flex, but he is at the most a flex play this week.

 

Denver at San Diego

Start ’em – WR Keenan Allen:  The Chargers are going to have to throw the hell out of the ball to keep up with the Broncos.  Allen will be the beneficiary. He is beginning to be a must start in all formats.

Dallas at New Orleans

Sit ’em – Saints Def:  The Cowboys put up numbers on all the teams they have played.  This game has all the makings of a shoot out.  I would avoid this unless you aren’t penalized for yardage.

 Miami at Tampa Bay

Start ’em – RB Mike James:  He is a flex start this week.  Miami has a tough D.  This much is known, but so does Seattle. I don’t think he has a monster game, but I think he has the coaching staff’s confidence to carry the load and that is important moving forward.

– Ron

2013: Start ‘em or Sit ‘em Week 7

Hello again everyone – Week 7 kicks off this evening and if you still need fantasy advice for the week, we’re gonna attempt to bring it to you.

There will be a forthcoming update for the rest of the games.

Seahawks @ Cardinals

Sit’em – Seahawks WR’s:   If you know who to start out of this group, you are either psychic or a liar. maybe both.   The production is too inconsistent to be relied upon.

Buccaneers @ Falcons

Start em – WR Vincent Jackson:  He sure looked healthy last week and went over 100 yards and two TD’s.   He and Mike Glennon might have some chemistry,  I think he is definitely worth the start this week as a WR2 or WR3

Sit ‘em – QB Matt Ryan:  nothing against Matt Ryan here, but with no Julio Jones , Roddy White or Steven Jackson I think he could have a very pedestrian day.  If you have another option, I would go with that.

Rams @ Panthers

Start ‘em –WR Steve Smith: Though I do like the Rams front, I am not as sold on their secondary.  I think that Smith will have a solid game here.  Cortland Finnegan appears to be losing a step, Jenkins on the other side is a good corner, but still inexperienced.

Sit ‘em –Rams offense:  Despite scoring 38 points last week the Rams barely cracked 200 yards of offense.   Aside from a bye week/imjury start for Stacey or Bradford, I don’t think there is a reliable play here.

Bengals @ Lions

Sit ‘em – Lions TE’s: I just don’t think you can count of Fauria to have another monster game or Pettigrew to return to 2011 form at this point.  I mean, Fauria only has 7 receptions on the year.    If you want to roll the dice that he gets in the end zone again, go ahead, but as you know this is a less than reliable strategy for a player that has only 7 catches going into the game.

Start ‘em – QB Andy Dalton:   The Lions have a fierce pass rush, but they have a weak back 4.  I think the “Red Rocket” builds on last week’s performance and has another solid game.  I think this is a good bye week /injury/under performing QB replacement.

Chargers @ Jaguars

Start ‘em – RB Ryan Matthews:  He had his first 100 yard game last week and I think he continues to roll.  I would keep him as a Flex option for now, but he could be the RB2 that most people envisioned when they drafted him.  The fact that he got 20 touches last game bodes well for his fantasy game.

Start ‘em – WR Justin Blackmon:  There is absolutely no reason to keep him on your bench.  San Diego has a week pass Defense and Blackmon has been playing well.  He has developed a bit of a report with Chad Henne.

Bills @ Dolphins

Start ‘em – QB Ryan Tannehill:  See what Andy Dalton did last week to the Bills?  I don’t know if I would expect over 300 yards, but 250+ and 2 TD’s would be a reasonable expectation for Tannehill.   He’s a solid back up or bye week fill in this week.

Patriots @ Jets

Start ‘em – TE Rob Gronkowski : Me Gronk play.  Me Gronk smash.  Me Gronk score touchdown.

Start ‘em – RB Bilal Powell:  With no beef up front(Wilfork) and after putting Mayo on the shelf, the sandwich that is the Patriots D will be susceptible to the run this week.  I don’t think Powell has a monster game, but he is surely worth a flex start.

49ers @ Titans

Start ’em – QB Colin Kapernick: I think they throw some more in this game, mostly out of necessity. Kaep has a solid overall game.  I don’t think he goes off, but I don’t think he is a bad start this week even if they are going into Tenn and facing a good defense.

Texans @ Chiefs

Start ’em – Chiefs Defense – this might be the biggest slam dunk of a start this week. See what they did to the Raiders and Terrell Pryor last week?  something like that.  Less sacks, but maybe an extra turnover.   To start a young QB on the road in Arrowhead in a must win game for your team is not a sound move.  Its a desperate move.

Ravens @ Pittsburgh

Start ‘em – WR Torry  Smith: I don’t think the Steelers will be able to cover him. He and Joe Flacco will have a good day through the air.  Personal wise, the Steelers just don’t have the horses in the back 4.  Also, the Ravens will be looking to feed Smith the ball after only getting one catch last week.

Start’ em – RB Le’von Bell: He is still a flex option.  The Packers ran the ball down Baltimore throat last week.  I think Pittsburgh will try and do the same.   He will surely get his share of touches this week.

Bears @ Redskins

Start ‘em – WR Pierre Garcon: Crepes and Perrier for everyone!  He has been seeing a lot of targets, but I think he has a big game in this one.   The ‘Skins need explosion in the passing game and he brings that.   The Bears corners are good, but I think he gets a long pass in this one.

Browns @ Packers

Start ‘em –TE Jermichael Finley:  A must start this week due to the injuries sustained by Cobb and Jones.  He will be the De facto #2 receiver.  Who does #2 work for?  Aaron Rodgers.  I am expecting at least 7 targets for him this game.  

Cowboys @ Eagles

Sit ‘em – RB Joseph Randle:  Listen, I know you are super psyched you listened to us and got him off the waiver wire.  I get it.  You might have to start him this week.  I get it.   I just don’t see him running wild at all.  Phily’s run defense has been much better in recent weeks; the Cowboys D is a mess so they could be playing from behind, and Phily’s pass defense is as soft as cream cheese.  He will get his touches, no doubt, but I just wouldn’t count on a giant game from him.  He just isn’t the sure fire start people are building him up to be.  Flex play at best.

Broncos @ Colts

Start ‘em – RB Trent Richardson: In a game where there is an embarrassment of offensive riches on both sides of the field, I think Richardson is a bit of a secret weapon.  The Colts offense is more ball control than last year, I am going to assume that the Colts try and control the clock with long drives and they feed Trent the ball.   He will definitely get his touches in this game.   Manning can’t score when he is on the sideline

-Ron and Mike

2013: Start ‘em or Sit ‘em Week 6

Hello again everyone – Week 6 kicks off this evening and if you still need fantasy advice for the week, we’re gonna attempt to bring it to you. We’re a bit behind this week on our own personal score card (We Told You So), but we hope to have week 5 results out soon….but trust me, we have a good record with this 🙂 So here’s some friendly advice for you on this week’s starts or sits – and we’ll try not to make it condescendingly obvious either.

Giants @ Bears  

Sit ‘em – Giants Defense: If you have this defense still, for some ungodly reason please don’t play them tonight.  In fact, do yourself a favor and drop them.

Start ‘em – WR Alshon Jeffery:  As we predicted in the preseason, Jeffery is finally becoming a big time player.   There is no reason not to expect 10+ points from him this week.

Bengals @ Bills

Start ‘em- TE Tyler Eifert: He is getting more comfortable as he plays more.  It looks like Andy Dalton is gaining confidence in him.  He has been on the upward tick and it will continue this week.

Packers @ Ravens

Sit ‘em – Packers Defense:  They lost Clay Mathews that in and of itself is a giant blow.  They looked good last week against a Calvin Johnson-less Lions team, but I do not see that kind of output again this week on the road.

Start ‘em- QB Joe Flacco:  Did I mention losing Clay Mathews was a big blow to the Packers’ defense?  The Ravens’ line has been playing awful this year.   I mean, really bad.  I think the acquisition of  Eugene Monroe helps; it’s a wakeup call to the rest of the line.   In addition, Jacoby Jones returns.  That will help balance the passing attack and I think this all adds up to a good start for Flacco.

Rams @ Texans

Sit ‘em – Any Ram until proven otherwise: They played well last week you say. Bradford and Stacy put up some numbers you say.  I say they played the Jaguars.  That means nothing.  Just a blip on the radar.  If they have success this week, I will start to believe.  Otherwise sit unless you have to start someone.

Start ‘em- Texans Defense:  They played poorly last week in SF.  They will be looking for some home cooking to right the ship.  Too bad for the Rams, this Texans defense will tear them up.

Raiders @ Chiefs

Sit ‘em – QB Terrell Pyror: I am not hating on Pryor at all.  I like him much more than I thought I would.  He is playing well and could be the future.  Going into Arrowhead for any QB is a huge task, doing that for the first time as a starter is monumental.  As I said I like Pryor, just not this week, in this venue, against that D.

Panthers @Vikings

Start ‘em- WR Greg Jennings:  He and Matt Cassel Might have a bit of a rapport developing.  If you need a WR this week, you could do a lot worse than this.  At this point he’s a low WR2 but a solid WR3.

Titans @ Seahawks

Sit ‘em – Titans Defense: In their current state the Seahawks offense is no offensive juggernaut.   I do feel that the Titans will give up a good number of points based on Offense, Defense and ST and Seattle is a different team at home.   This isn’t a terrible play, but if you have another option go for that.

Start ‘em- WR Golden Tate:  Having Pro Bowl Center Max Unger back will help with the pass protection and so will being at home.  Tate played well last week and he could have had more if he wasn’t called for a very questionable OPI.  That would have given him an extra 40 yards.    I think he could have a game this week. He is worth the start as a WR3 if you are having bye week or injury issues.

Steelers @ Jets

Start ’em WR Jeremy Kerley: For all their woes the Steelers defense is still rated 5th against the pass this season, but I do think Kerley makes an interesting flex play this weekend.  With Santonio Holmes out, and Stephen Hill being banged up and well..Stephen Hill – Geno Smith is learning to rely on Kerley as a nice safety value.   Kerley went over 60 yards and a TD last week, and he is a sneaky bet to repeat that performance.

Start ’em RB Le’Veon Bell: The Jets have the 2nd best rush defense in the league so for the 2nd time in this game I seem to be flying in the face of logic a little. But odds are if you drafted Bell and stuck with him til last week, or if you recently picked him off waivers – you can’t be happy with your current RB2 or flex situation.  Maybe you got stuck with duds like Ryan Matthews or former Steeler Rashard Mendenhall, or maybe you have been hit by the David Wilson injury…the fact is, I know you need Bell…you want to start him.  I say go ahead without fear, he had a great season debut last week and even though the matchup this week is less favorable Bell will be a centerpiece of the offense and should give you a chance to cash in with RB2 value.

Eagles at Buccaneers

Sit’em QB’s Nick Foles & Mike Glennon: It’s only week 6 and boy how things have changed for these two teams.  Glennon is the beneficiary of the Josh Freeman saga, while Foles steps back into Philly’s plan with a chance to play while Michael Vick is on the sidelines.  Glennon had last week off and he gets to play an Eagles defense that has just struggled all season, but it’s tough to imagine the rookie is really ready to go.  He’s likely not even owned in standard 10-12 team leagues.  Foles I advised as a waiver pickup this week, but that was a speculative add against his future changes of challenging Vick for the starter’s job down the line.  Tampa has a decent, but not spectacular defense which plays better against the run than the pass  – but likewise it’s tough to imagine Foles and Chip Kelly adjusting the offense from Vick in just one week.  You likely have better options on your team even if you picked him up – but if Foles does succeed this week…then maybe he’s a “start” sooner than later.

Jaguars at Broncos

Start ’em- wearing orange possibly even the guy in the barrel. – Holy hell – if you have any Broncos – Manning, Demarius Thomas, Julius Thomas, Eric Decker, Wes Welker, Knowshon Moreno, even Kicker Matt Prater – it would be tough for you to bench any of them with this sweet matchup.  I would say if you have bye week or injury issues that even Ronnie Hillman and Montee Ball are worth “what the heck” type of flex plays given the potential for garbage time here.

Start ’em WR Justin Blackmon – I don’t really think the game will be close, and that’s a good thing if your a Jaguars player in the passing game.  Mostly you need sheer volume to succeed in Jacksonville right now b/c neither Gabbert or Chad Henne (this week’s contestant on “what the hell are they doing down there”) are accurate enough to do a lot with a little.  They’ll be behind in this one, they’ll have to throw a ton – Blackmon was hot last week in his season debut, and he should roll that over- albeit in garbage time.

Saints at Patriots

Start ’em TE Robert Gronkowski:  Maybe this is just wishful thinking from a guy who owns Gronk in a few leagues this season, but the time is coming when Gronkowski reminds us – that yes the Pats can throw the ball, and yes Gronkowski is a special player.  Reports look like he’ll suit up this weekend, and there is always the danger that not only will he carry rust into this game, but that Bellichick and company might ease him into action as a decoy.  I’m advising a start though (if he plays) because like Bell you’ve probably held him since the draft and you probably don’t have a great option in front of him.  For all of the negative things about a player coming back in his 1st game from injury, there is something to be said for Brady forcing him the ball to kickstart a connection as well.  It really could go either way, and if you’re holding the Gronk card I don’t see much harm in tossing it down this week – unless you’ve got a top 5 TE with a great matchup.

Sit ’em Marques Colston: This is a qualified “sit ’em”.  If you need Colston this matchup is not particularly bad for him, but he;s no longer a must start every week at this point in the season.  I have fond memories of Colston winning me a league in his rookie season when I picked him up off of waivers. But injuries have seemed to plague Colston since then, and then this season he seems to be lower in the teams spread out pecking order than ever before.  Colston is behind TE Jimmy Graham and RB Darren Sproles as the focal points of the offense and it’s creating a lot of inconsistency for him (he caught just 2 passes last week).  I just think for most of the rest of this season you have to start betting on Colston more as a WR3 than a WR2 – and so he becomes a matchup play – so consider your bench options this week before you make a decision to start him.

Lions at Browns

Start ’em RB Willis McGahee – Much as I like the talent of RB Bobby Rainey, it’s clear that last Thursday against the Bills McGahee’s 72 yard and a TD performance put that committee idea to bed for now.  In 3 games McGahee is averaging just slightly above a terrible 2.5 ypc, but the Browns just keep handing him the ball as he has averaged over 15 attempts a game – including 26 just last week.  That kind of workload will help production no matter how he struggles, and to make matters better – he has the Lions and their 26th ranked rush defense this week. 20 or more carries against the Lions should equal success McGahee is a def flex or even RB2 play this week.

Sit ’em RB Joique Bell:  Bell was a nice early season surprise and can still be worth flex plays even with Reggie Bush healthy.  However, those plays have to be against good matchups and the Browns’ 8th ranked run defense is not one of those matchups.  Look somewhere else this weekend.

Redskins at Cowboys

Start ’em WR Terrance Williams:  I said it when he was drafted, at best Williams is an average talent, and maybe even below that – but just like Kevin Olgetree for one week last season, and Laurent Robinson for the entire 2011 season – the 3rd WR option/Miles Austin fill-in can be good for a fantasy run.  Williams is in the middle of that run now, and with the Redskins horrific pass defense coming to town you don’t want to think about benching him now.  As Miles Austin gets healthier Williams value may shrink – but for now he is a borderline WR2 start considering this matchup.

Start ’em TE Jordan Reed: I have a sneaky feeling about Reed in this one.  He was starting to come on, and then was hurt before the Redskins’ bye last week.  Assuming he’s ready to go with the week of rest, Reed makes an interesting option against a Cowboys defense that has been burned by TE’s (albeit more established ones) the past 2 games.  This game may not be a shootout on the order of Denver and Dallas…but points should be scored and Reed may be a bigger part of the gameplan than he’s been so far.  He’s a risk worth playing over TE’s with low ceilings the like of Kyle Rudolph or Brandon Myers, because the Redskins seem to be ready to make Reed their TE of the future and have had a week off to get him more involved.

Colts at Chargers

Start ’em RB Donald Brown:What the heck?  I hear you thinking.  Obviously this is a deeper “start” for your flex position or RB3 if you’ve got some bye problems or injury concerns.  However, it’s not as far fetched as it may 1st appear.  Brown should be owned in all leagues at this point as Trent Richardson’s primary backup (Ahmad Bradshaw was put on season ending I/R this week), and he is doing great with his limited carries averaging 8 YPC on only about 4 touches a game.  Brown’s real value is should Trent Richardson get hurt, but against poor run defense teams like the 24th ranked Chargers Brown has a homerun chance of a long run and a score.  There are many guys you start ahead of Donald this week, but I’m saying if you are backed into a corner and thinking about starting a guy like Marcel Reese or Brandon Jacobs – Brown is worth considering as a longshot chance.

Start ’em WR Keenan Allen & WR Vincent Brown: I like Brown more than Allen, Ron likes Allen more than Brown – and if you somehow own both – make your own choice please don’t gamble on both.  If you only own one however it’s time to put these young Chargers WR’s in your lineup as a WR3.  Both look to be over their chronic injury issues (for the moment) and Philip Rivers is developing the chemistry needed to make them potential breakout players.

-Ron and Mike

Truth or Fiction from NFL Week 1

Before we get into what one can potentially recognize from the 1st week of football.  I want to stress that- just like the real NFL – a week 1 win, or loss does not set up/or ruin your 2013 fantasy season.  Sure some of you may have more work to do than others, but if you follow along with what’s happening in the NFL there’s always waiver work to do, and potentially even trades to make.

The NFL has changed, preseason doesn’t help starters out the way it used to – and as a result some of your fantasy players may have let you down this week.  On the other hand some players may simply have been benefits of unique situations that temporarily inflated their value.

Sure, we’ll have weekly articles on who to grab from your waiver wire, or who to trade for/away – but really the most important part of being a fantasy owner is to evaluate your players and the NFL trends weekly – and then to put those in the proper context.

So for our 1st weekend of NFL football I’m gonna put out there some of the bigger potential fantasy stories and what I think is really going on with them.  Then using this analysis, I’ll attack my league’s waiver wire – or my week 2 starting lineup, or my trade offers (you shouldn’t do a lot of trading early in the year unless you feel like you’re getting overwhelming value).

TRUTH

1.) The Eagles Offense will be a hot spot for everyone as long as Michael Vick stays healthy.   I wrote about this a lot this preseason – and this is a very tough game to truly evaluate if the Eagles will have the league’s best offense or whether several early Washington mistakes inflated the stats.  What is undeniable though is that this offense fits their skill players perfectly.  WR Desean Jackson and TE Brent Celek can now safely be thought of as fantasy weekly starters, while QB Michael Vick and especially RB Lesean McCoy can now be thought of as fantasy MVP caliber players.

2.) QB Colin Kapernick is not a one year fantasy wonder, and the Niners will continue to open up their offense for him.  Sure, it was against the terrible Packers D – but the trend for Harbaugh to allow his QB to throw has to make fantasy owners happy.  And they should continue to do this even against better defenses.  Kap’s chemistry with WR Anquan Bolidn (208 yards!) may have been the story of the day, but I think the story of the 2013 season will be his emerging connection with TE Vernon Davis.  The Niners will not be a pass 1st team by season’s end, but it is safe to throw out the notion that their passing game will be conservative.

3.) Pittsburgh’s rushing attack, if not their whole offense looks headed for disaster.  Again, everything depends on your league size and team needs – but I would be getting out of the Steelers backfield as soon as possible.  The passing game may still provide moments and stars this season – but the running game is going to be dead in the water for most or all of 2013.  Losing their all-pro center Maurkice Pouncey for the season was the deathblow.  A final stroke that was set up for a team that lost RB Le’Veon Bell for 2 months earlier in the preseason, and a team that lost scat back RB LaRod Stephens-Howling in this one also for the season.  Starter Isaac Redmon – got all of about 9 yards before fumbling problems had him on the bench.  How bad is Pitt’s RB situation?  They brought back Jonathan Dwyer – a guy they cut only a few days before b/c he lacked dedication to the job.  Isn’t that inspiring?  If you own a Pittsburgh back in fantasy they are at their lowest value, so you either drop them for a promising player, or you wait til they have a good week and move them…if any one of them ever has that good week.

4.) New England’s offense is still very much in flux.  Paging super sleeper (for some) TE Zac Sudfeld?  Are you awake Zac? Are you alive?  Yeah, after 1 game the next move TE in the New England offense has as many receptions for as many yards as I do.  And now he seems to have hamstring problems.  RB Steven Ridley a very popular RB2 choice for fantasy – and likely a 2nd round pick in most formats – was clearly outplayed, and seemed to have quite literally fumbled away his job – with an early fumble.   Unfortunately for the Patriots when RB Shane Vereen came in and went for an all purpose day of over 150 yards – he broke his wrist and will miss the next 4 games.  Likewise WR Danny Amendola who caught 10 passes, also got hurt for the 1,000th time in his career and looks to be unavailable for week 2.   Nothing is settled for workload or targets right now, and the biggest winners this week are probably Steven Ridley owners who will get a 2nd chance on life.

FICTION

1.) RB David Wilson will lose his starting RB job any time soon.  I know I’m not his biggest fan – and fumbling, especially twice is a good way to get benched.  But when RB Andre Brown went down the reality is the Giants had a bare cupboard behind Wilson.  Now I know the big story is who the Giants will bring in this week (as we mentioned in our preseason articles) – and whomever they bring in is worth a look in fantasy on the waiver wire (depending on the talent of the guy they are bringing in)…but the reality is, whomever comes in will be competing only to take some of the workload away, not the job.  Not yet anyway.  The Giants have been very publicly supportive of Wilson after the game – b/c they know that they need Wilson’s speed in the offense.   For now and for the 1st half of the season he should be safe and is worth a buy low trade offer if you can grab him…..but, it does come with the risk that he continues to shot himself in the le…umm foot.  Sorry I confuse that saying when it comes to the G-men).

2.) The Seattle Offense will under perform vs expectations this year.  Right now, file this under fiction.  People will look at Kapernick, Luck, and Rg3’s (who got most of his in garbage time) stat sheets for week 1 and be ready to dump on Mr Wilson.  Personally, and this is no slight to Russell Wilson, but I think his fantasy ceiling is naturally the lowest of those 4 anyway – and this game did nothing to change that opinion.  And it shouldn’t change anyone’s opinion that Wilson can still very easily be a top 8-10 fantasy QB.  Likewise, owners have to be upset with RB Marshawn Lynch’s 40 something yard effort.  It’s gonna be ok – and believe me you will be able to start them in road games, even on the east coast.  The problem in this one, (aside from opening week rustiness) was the Carolina front 7.  Carolina’s front 7 are very talented and they play the run game especially well – in boxing “styles make fights”- and in this one the Panthers just matched up very well with the things Seattle likes to do.  There will be much bigger fantasy days ahead for the Seahawks.

3.) It’s panic time on RB CJ Spiller, WR Dez Bryant, and WR Calvin Johnson.   I lumped these guys together – 3,2, and 3 would be their week 1 point totals in most leagues, and I really added Johnson to highlight the absurdity of worrying about these 1st and 2nd round fantasy picks.  These guys had bad weeks due to schemes and due to circumstance – no one wants this to happen, but it does.  There are some guys like maybe WR Mike Wallace and WR Kenny Britt that you can start looking for the red flag, but even on them – after one week it’s not time to raise it.

And so these are just a few of the Week 1 fallouts – whether you won or lost in your week 1 matchups, just like the real guys it’s on to week 2 and planning for that.  We’ll have some waiver articles up soon for you to help with that plan.

:by Mike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2013 Preseason Week 3: NY Jets vs NY Giants

NEW YORK JETS

Just when you think the Buffalo Bills had a bad preseason week 3 at QB, just when you think QB Mark Sanchez was the king of insane turnovers, and just when you think Rex Ryan and company couldn’t get any bat shit crazier…I present this game…and 1st up…

QB Geno Smith didn’t look like he was bothered by his previous ankle injury, and he started out with some nice safe one read throws- some out of the bootleg.  Heck on his 2nd possession Smith (aided by 4 defensive penalties) led the team down the field for a TD.  So what came after was baffling.  His 1st INT was just a lazy throw that was behind his WR just enough for the DB to make the play.  Most times that sort of pass is knocked away or dropped – but no doubt the throw was soft.

Then on his next series he threw another interception when he was faced with some pressure up the middle and he sailed a pass high over the middle.  The game just seemed to start moving too fast for him at this point – he’s not evolved enough at this point to deal with adversity in the pocket or to read defenses.

The 3rd Int about a quarter later was because Geno couldn’t see DE Justin Tuck drop back into coverage.  He was just flat out fooled and had terrible zone recognition as he tried to dump it short.

What do you do to top off 3 int’s?  Simple.  You” Orlovsky” that shit.  Sure enough in the 4th quarter – Geno overreacted to some simple pressure, inexplicably sprinted backwards toward the end line, stepped over it, and launched a ball while falling away that landed just in bounds on the sideline (so that even had he not stepped over the line, he would’ve gotten a safety on intentional grounding).

The game just seems too big and too fast for Geno right now.  And that’s ok, he’s a rookie.  He would benefit from sitting behind someone for a season or 2 – and then maybe he can look back on this and laugh.

So of course, the Jets – insisting there’s a QB competition, even  after this debacle send Mark Sanchez out there against 4 stringers?  I mean the only thing that could keep Sanchez from starting opening day after that is injury…so…

Yeah, you see where this is headed…

Sanchez’s injury will be one of the most over analyzed controversies of the preaseason.  As such you can find numerous takes on it-including the continuing absurdity of Rex Ryan’s press conferences.  So I won’t add much on that front – on the fantasy front it is actually horrible news – b/c Sanchez was at least looking like someone who could play the position.  Geno looks like someone too raw to do much of anything.   The 2013 New York Jets offense could resemble a tire fire.

RB Bial Powell who looked like he might actually upset Chris Ivory for the starting RB job, took a step back in this one…he was terrible in the passing game dropping 2 easy ones, before getting 2 for 18 yards, and bad in the running game 11 carries for 16 yards (with a 6 yard TD).  The Jets lack of a run game this preseason is alarming..”ground & pound”  may just wind up being “pound” beginning of the season – where pound = defenses pounding into them.

NEW YORK GIANTS

The highlight for the Giants came on their very 1st offensive play when RB David Wilson took the ball 84 yards down the sideline for a touchdown.  The play was blocked superbly and all he had to do was run through the hole and use his speed.  It didn’t showcase any great moves or vision, just speed.  And Wilson continues to represent a dilemma for me in ffl – as he seems to be a big play back based on speed- but he worries me in the boom or bust department.  Aside from his 84 yard run – he had 4 other carries for just 8 yards.  He also caught 2 passes for a net total of zero yards.  So overall, outside of the 84 yard run – he had 6 touches for 8 yards.

Wilson’s ADP has been moving up steadily all preseason and is now about the late 3rd, high 4th in 12 team leagues.  It’s not bad value, but from what I’ve seen if he doesn’t hit a big play during his day, he won’t grind out yards – that to me means he’s a risk pick.  So if you’re taking him, make sure the next RB at the position is a little more traditional in their output/workload – lower ceiling, but higher floor type of guy.

Defenses are so unpredictable that I very rarely make comments about team defenses….but, this if any is the year to pass on taking the Giants D in fantasy as a #1 team defense.  They have not looked good in the preseason, they have lost starter S Stevie Brown for the year and they play in a division with 3 potentially very good offenses.   At one point early in this game the defense committed penalties on 4 straight plays – their stat sheet for the game looks good because of Geno’s meltdown, but they are not a defense to invest in.

:by Mike

2013 Preseason Week 2: Indy vs NY Giants

Indy

This just in: QB Andrew Luck is pretty good.  In leagues that penalize for turnovers Luck’s 2012 rookie season in fantasy was a little underwhelming compared to his hype.  If you assume with another year in the offseason, and Indy’s attempt to rebuild a below average OL that Luck’s turnovers will drop – then you have to be excited about his top 10 potential for 2013.   He absolutely looked the part in this game he was 9 of 13 (with a few bad drops in there by his targets) for 107 and 2 Td’s.   It should be noted that one of his TD passes was a ball that CB Aaron Ross batted up in the air and should’ve had an INT on- but that happened b/c the Giants pass rush clobbered Luck as he was throwing.

I don’t know what’s wrong with TE Coby Fleener, but I’m beginning to think he should give about half his paycheck to Luck every year for getting him drafted so high.   They either don’t game plan for him, or he’s below average at getting open – and I’m starting to think it’s a lot of the latter.  He dropped the only target I saw and was held off the stat sheet.

Don’t look now but WR Darius Heyward-Bay may be coming back to life.  Right now the Colts are using him a lot in that intermediate depth outside the lines type of passing game (WR screens, curl routes at the marker), and it’s clear his new home has done wonders for his confidence.  I don’t know if Bay becomes a guy you draft late, or whether you wait and watch waivers…but our own Tim Brown believes he’s worth taking a flyer on,  as potentially a WR 4.

RB Ahmad Bradshaw is becoming a popular “sleeper” pick with drafters, but he once again did not play in this one.  It was all about his homecoming to NY and he left it at that.  Bradshaw concerns me from a health standpoint,  Vick Ballard is not really a threat to him – but his own health is very much a problem.  In standard 12 team redraft leagues I want no part of him before the 7th round.

NY Giants

I’m coming around a little bit on RB David Wilson. I don’t think he has RB1 potential, and I do think that RB Andre Brown is a better football player…but it’s clear the Giants want to use this guy.    He had some excellent vision on some runs, but the other side of that is that he’s not going to move many piles.  Wilson has RB2 written all over him, and that’s perfectly fine for his current ADP of round 5 or 6.

Wilson’s whole situation with Andre Brown baffles me.  It’s like opposite day.  Wilson is the smaller, faster guy who catches passes – and yet he gets the early down work.  Andre Brown the larger, tougher runner (not without his own speed) is in on 3rd downs b/c apparently David Wilson can’t learn how to blitz pickup.   The only time it “felt right” to me in this game was when they asked Andre Brown to try a 4th and short pickup – and he failed at that.

Wilson finished with 8 carries for 34 yards, but 21 of them came on one carry.  Andre Brown finished with 8 carries for 36 yards – so?  50/50.

Wilson will lead this running back committee  b/c Andre Brown is a square peg running back in a round hole Giants pass 1st philosophy.    The days of Big Blue hammering it between the tackles is gone, and while Wilson is not a great all-around RB, he is clearly the guy that fits the philosophy.  The only x-factor for Brown’s value will be goaline carries – and I don’t think we can assume he will get all of them.

More opposite day in this one: WR Hakeem Nicks’ 2 grabs for 40 yards stat sheet looks impressive…and it is encouraging.  But there’s no doubt Nicks is not 100% healthy – you can see him dragging his feet a little and looking sluggish as he rehabs – to me that’s a bigger concern for a guy who’s hurt every season, than say WR Victor Cruz’s  ankle injury which got all the press.

Cruz will be fine and he’s the WR to own from the Giants – again not b/c his talent is overwhelming, but b/c of his rapport in the offense and his (relative) health.  Panic not G-men fans: Cruz will be ok.

:by Mike