Super Bowl Preview - Brady or Manning

Super Bowl Preview

 

Patriots

 

Tom Brady- Brady didn’t win his fourth Super Bowl in 2008 because god interfered, creating the luckiest play in the history of the NFL. Now he has a chance for revenge against the team that stopped him from joining Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw as the QBs with the most Super Bowls (4). It is possible that the Patriots have their worst defense in the history of Belichick this year, making their run even more impressive. There is a lot of legacy on the line here for Brady and Belichick. If they win, the two would have the most Super Bowls of any QB coach combo of all-time. Additionally, if Brady loses to Eli Manning for the second time, it would be harder to argue that he is the best quarterback of all-time.

 

Wes Welker- Welker had an absurd 122 receptions and 1,569 receiving yards this season. This is 221 yards more than he has had in any other season and 1 reception short of his career mark as well. Although Welker has been with the Patriots since 2007, he does not have a Super Bowl ring. The loss to the Giants in 2008 must have left him bitter and he should have a big game.

 

Gronk/Hernandez- Gronk broke every single season TE mark there is and Hernandez was still able to have a tremendous year. The two of them combined for 24 TDs and 2,237 yards. It will be a deadly combination for years to come, but this is their first Super Bowl. The Patriots offense is centered around these TEs, so these sophomores really need to step up.

 

Patriots Defense- The Patriots let up the 2nd most passing yards and total yards in the league, but to their credit, they were 15th in PPG defense (21.4). They have played well in the playoffs thus far and stepped up in a big way in the AFC championship game. Vince Wilfork played spectacularly with 6 tackles and a sack. The Giants offense had the 8th most yards and 9th most PPG. They are red hot and if the Patriots are going to win, they need another big game from their lackluster defense.

 

Giants

 

Eli Manning- Manning is red hot with 11 TDs and only 1 INT in his last four games. He goes up against a pretty miserable Patriots defense and if he plays like he has been, the Giants should win. Manning also has a chance to win his second Super Bowl, which would do a lot towards getting him in the hall of fame.

 

Victor Cruz- Cruz had a breakout season with 9 TDs and 1,536 yards. He had the 4th most fantasy points of any receiver, impressive for coming out of nowhere. Most people thought Mario Manningham would be the clear 2nd receiving option with virtually no 3rd option, but Cruz actually became the first option. There is no way the Patriots can cover Cruz and Nicks all game. One of them will go big.

 

Hakeem Nicks- As good as Nicks was in the regular season, he has really picked p his game in the postseason. He has had 325 yards and 4 TDs in the three games the Giants have played. He is going to be the most talented receiver on the field in this game and if the Patriots double him, Cruz will have a big day. Eli Manning certainly got lucky with these guys.

 

Giants Defense- Although the Giants defense had a down year, they are healthy and tearing it up in the playoffs. Their pass rush remains one of the best in the NFL and it is proved to be the Patriots kryptonite in the past. The Patriots do have the 2nd best offense in total yards so it will still be an incredible challenge for the Giants. The key is covering their duo of TEs and stopping their red zone success. 

Barclay’s Season Finale

Season Recap

This season was certainly the year of the quarterback. Even with a week to go in the season, 5 QBs already have at least 318 fantasy points. To put things in perspective, no player had that many last year. Rodgers actually has over 400 points. The game has truly changed and here are the  rankings for next year.

QB

Aaron Rodgers- Without question, Rodgers was the MVP this season and don’t be surprised if he is the first pick in your fantasy drafts next season. He should be.

Cam Newton- Newton was second in points this season as a rookie. There is absolutely no reason why he can’t be better next year. Also, unlike Tebow, I’d be surprised if defenses ever figured out how to stop Newton. He is too dynamic of an athlete.

Drew Brees- Brees made a strong bid for number 2 on this list by breaking Dan Marino’s passing yardage record, but I think he maxed out this season, whereas Newton has room to improve. Brees should still have an excellent season though.

Tom Brady- Somehow, at 353 points, with one game left to play, Brady is number 4 on this list. That should really say something about how strange this year was. Don’t be surprised if the top 4 on this list going the first round of your fantasy draft next year. They absolutely should.

Matthew Stafford- Stafford had a great year and he’s still young. He does carry an injury risk, so watch out in drafts.

RB

Arian Foster- He was injured much of the year, but he is still the most effective back when healthy and having  Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson back will only help his value.

LeSean McCoy- These two players are pretty far above the next two. McCoy has a nose for the end zone and managed 20 TDs this season. He’s young and has no intention of stopping.

Ray Rice- Ray rice is young and finally proved this year that he could find the end zone.

Darren McFadden- When he is healthy, he is arguably the best RB in the league in case anyone forgot about what happened earlier this year.

MJD- He was 4th in fantasy points and had another great year. He remains one of the safest picks in fantasy.

Adrian Peterson –Peterson falls all the way to 6 on the list with his ligament injuries at the end of the season. He may finally be wearing down.

Fred Jackson- Jackson may be old, but he was also 3rd in fantasy points per game. Don’t be surprised to see him have another great year next yr.

WR

Calvin Johnson-  Johnson remains the best WR in the league, although he was shut down for a 5 game stretch this year. I wouldn’t trust any WR with a first round pick with all the RBs and QBs available.

Wes Welker- Welker may get 1,600 yards next year and is Brady’s favorite target, even ahead of Gronk.

Greg Jennings- Jennings remains one of the safest options in fantasy. He simply does it every year.

Larry Fitzgerald- Fitzgerald came on at the end of the season and should be a good asset next year.

Julio Jones- Jones will be much better than Roddy white next season and truly take over that corps. He had a strong end to this season.

Kenny Britt- Few remember him, but he started out the season better than anyone. He is young and incredibly talented.

Victor Cruz- Cruz is Eli’s new favorite target

Hakeem Knicks- Alright, it is pretty close.

Mike Wallace, Laurent Robinson, Dez Bryant, Mike Wallace Antonio Brown, Jordy Nelson, Steve Smith ,A.J. Green and Miles Austin are all really close.

TE

Gronk- Gronk shattered the TD record for a TE in a season this year. He will be a second round pick next season.

Jimmy Graham- Alll year, there have only been two great TEs. Graham is the other and will likely be a 3rd round pick next season.

Week 15 Starts

QB

Aaron Rodgers- He is matchup proof. Kansas City may be 10th in pass defense, but they have given up 21 passing TDs and will give up 4 this week to Rodgers.

Cam Newton- Houston has a fantastic pass defense, but that isn’t all Newton does. Sure, he will get 250 yards passing and a TD or two, but he will also add to his league leading rushing TD total.

Drew Brees- Brees has had at least 322 passing yards and 2 TDs in each of the last four weeks. He may be playing away from home (big difference for the Saints), but he is also playing the Vikings, who are 26th in pass defense.

You could start Romo or Brady this week as well. For this week, none of the 5 QBs looks overwhelmingly better than the others.

 

RB

Arian Foster- Arian Foster is the best RB start and next week as he plays the Colts. This week he goes against the Panthers who have improved their rush defense from 30th to 24th in recent weeks. Foster should still have a field day and  it helps that the Panthers have let up the second most rushing TDs of any team this year (15).

LeSean McCoy- McCoy has 10 rushing TDs in his last 9 games and has only failed to find the end zone once this season. The Jets have a good rush defense and McCoy won’t get over 100 yards rushing, but that’s the great thing about McCoy. He is a dual threat with his receiving and always finds the end zone.

Chris Johnson- CJ is a risky start. He has no-showed for much of 2011, but he also has at least 130 yards rushing in three of his last five games. The common denominator of Johnson’s games is that they are all against bad teams. There is no worse defense than the Colts.

 

WR

Calvin Johnson- Johnson has only one TD in his last 5 games, but has been the best WR of the league this year. As the Lions make their playoff push, they will get Johnson the ball. Oakland doesn’t exactly have a strong pass defense either.

 Austin/Bryant/Robinson- With the absence of any big name receiver playing well recently, I have to go with teams. All three of these guys could play very well this week against the 2nd worst overall defense in the league (Tampa Bay). If I had to choose, I would say Robinson because of his TD consistency the last 8 weeks.

Nicks/Cruz- Either of these guys is also a great start. Both are hot and Washington poses no threat on defense.

 

TE

Rob Gronkowski- Gronk might be the best TE ever and looks to expand the TD record another two scores this Sunday. He has 10 TDs in his last six games so this shouldn’t really be a surprise.

Jimmy Graham- You should really start Gronk, but if you aren’t a Patriots fan, Graham is definitely your best option this week against a weak Vikings defense.

 

Barcaly’s Week 14 Starts

 QB

Aaron Rodgers- As you have done all year, start Aaron Rodgers. Oakland his hardly a tough matchup and he showed you why he is still the best fantasy QB last week with 369yards passing and 4 TDs.

Cam Newton- This guy had 40 fantasy points last week. We have never seen anything like him. He had 3 rushing TDs, a ridiculous effort for any RB, much less a QB. He is leading the NFL in rushing TDs with 13 and plays a weak Atlanta defense, 21rst in pass defense.

Drew Brees- He already has over 4,000 yards passing (4031) and is the hottest player in the league. He has had 7 TDs 705 yards and 0 interceptions in the last two games. This is also against the Giants and Lions. The Titans are a breeze matchup in comparison.

 

You shouldn’t start Brady or Stafford this week. These guys are in a class of their own this week.

 

RB

 MJD- MJD has had a fantastic last few weeks against better competition than Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers have arguably the worst overall defense in the league and have the 28th ranked rushing defense.

Ray Rice- Rice has had an inconsistent workload this year, but he had 29 carries against the Browns last game and was able to put up 204 rushing yards, a career high. As we all know, the Colts have been one of the worst rush defenses for the last few years. The Ravens will rush early, often and all game. Rice will put up 20 fantasy points as long as he finds the end zone.

Chris Johnson- This is a risky start, but explosive one. CJ has still only had 4 100 rushing yard games this year and all of them have been against struggling teams. The Saints may give up 5.2 YPC, but they will most likely blow out the Titans. CJ is here because he is hot, the Saints can’t stop the run and we think he may be able to put up huge first half numbers.

Marshawn Lynch- Lynch is the hottest RB in the league and it playing the worst rush defense in the Rams. He gets plenty of carries and should have a huge game. If not for the recent excitement of CJ, Lynch would be the third best start this week.

 

 

WR

 Greg Jennings- We love Jennings here. He is the most consistent WR in the league and has only failed to have a TD three times this season. It helps when you are the favorite target of the best QB. It helps that the Packers are playing the Raiders, but they can put up 30 points against any defense in this league.

Victor Cruz- Cruz has been producing all year. Only once since week two has he had less than 84 yards receiving. He is also the hottest receiver in the game, which is all that matters these days. He has 404 yards and 3 TDs in his last three games.

Hakeem Nicks- Nicks had two TDs last week and has benefited greatly from Cruz becoming the number one receiver on the Giants.

Wes Welker- Welker had 11 receptions last week and historically plays well against the Redskins. He and Gronk should be connecting with Brady all game.

 

TE

Gronk- Gronk is having one of the best TE seasons ever and it is mostly packed into the last 5 games. He has 8 TDs over that span and he tied the record for TDs by a TE in a season last week with 13. Rarely does a TE have this kind of impact, but he is the most valuable fantasy player in the league right now outside of QB.

Jimmy Graham- That certainly takes the point out of the rest of this list which is too bad for Graham. Graham is having a terrific season and should benefit greatly from the 400 yards Brees figures to put up this week.

Who else could you seriously start over Gronk? 

Shane’s fantasy insights

1. Malcomb Floyd’s return helps V. Jackson, and Gates

Vincent Jackson has been a yo-yo all year long when it comes to producing fantasy points. In weeks 9-12, his receiving yardage went the following: 141, 22, 165, 25. With Malcomb Floyd back in the lineup, Philip Rivers finally has the depth that he has been searching for all season. Teams are no longer going to be able to double team Jackson or Gates, because Floyd’s speed will cause single coverage nightmares all day long. With a consistency finally established, feel free to deploy Gates and Vincent Jackson with no worries of a setback.

2. Say Goodbye to Michael Bush

He might get one more week without Darren McFadden in the lineup, but after the atrocious performance he put up against Miami, it is safe to say that Bush is all but done in terms of fantasy relevancy. He had a good run during weeks 9-12 as the starter in Oakland, but with his last starting gig a road game against the Packers, it is going to be tough for him to produce big numbers. If your playoffs start next week, and you have already locked up a playoff spot, try and trade him for someone who will help you throughout weeks 15-17 like C.J. Spiller or even Marion Barber.

3. No Heart in Desean

One of the most dynamic players in the NFL has just had a terrible year for fantasy owners who drafted him as a top 10, and some even a top 5 receiver. With the Eagles now at 4-8, thus mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, it is hard to imagine Desean Jackson doing anything outstanding. His heart doesn’t seem to be in it, and even though Vick is going to return to the lineup this week… there isn’t much hope.

4. The Hot Commodity: Marion Barber

With Matt Forte going to be sidelined due to a sprained MCL, the Bears offense is going to have to get big things out of Marion Barber if they have a shot at making the playoffs. Barber has already established himself as the first candidate for the goal line carries, and he shouldn’t have trouble touching the ball 20-25 times a game considering he did that in Dallas for years. He might not be worth a start this week, but he is definitely worth picking up to see how Chicago uses him.

5. Flip a coin: Heads start Mendenhall, Tails don’t

Pittsburgh has completely established themselves as a pass first offense, which is really awkward when it comes to the Steelers tradition of hard knock football. Mendenhall has only had more than 70 yards rushing in a game once this season, but he has been stellar in the red zone. It is a huge gamble, but when he scores he is a great guy to have in the lineup. It is just impossible to guess when that is going to happen.

6. Jacob Tamme with Deja Vu

When Dallas Clark went down last season with an injury, Jacob Tamme stepped up and became a top ten fantasy tight end. Now I know that Curtis Painter is not even on the same planet as Peyton Manning, but he is a pretty solid replacement. He has 13 catches in the last 3 games, and he will eventually find the endzone.

7. Chris Johnson is Back

If you drafted him, I hope you didn’t trade him. Chris Johnson has been the most distributed player throughout ESPN fantasy leagues, and whoever ended up with him is ecstatic now. CJ has had 100 yards rushing in three of his last four games, and there is no reason to believe he will stop any time soon. The most important statistic is that he is finally getting his touches, he’s averaging just over 21 carries over his last four games.

8. Ryan Matthews is Finally Relevant

Ever since coming into the NFL, there were high hopes that Ryan Matthews was going to be a huge force in the world of fantasy football. He has failed to deliver thus far, but the past two weeks he is showing great strides. He has rushed for over 100 yards in the last two games, and he now faces a Bills defense that has been horrendous against the run. Expect big things from him this week.

9. Andre Johnson is Done

If you have him, just drop him and let him be someone elses problem. He has been a fantasy nightmare this year. After 25 catches through his first 4 games, he missed 6 straight weeks due to injury, and now his hamstring is bothering him again and chances are he sits this week as well. Even if he comes back during your playoffs, T.J. Yates is still his quarterback, and he is way too risky to start.

10. Trade Steven Jackson

He is averaging under three yards a carry in the past three weeks, and look at who he plays in weeks 15 and 16: Cincinnati, and at Pittsburgh. Good luck. Both are two of the best run defenses in the NFL and if Jackson can only put up 42 yards on 15 carries against Seattle… I’m not seeing much hope here. Once again, try and find someone who NEEDS him this week, and give yourself somebody that is going to help you in the playoffs.

Start Em / Sit Em – Week 13

Start Em:

Nate Burleson (WR, Detroit Lions) : The Lions go on the road to play the New Orleans Saints on Sunday Night, and for anyone who watched the Monday Night game this week, it’s pretty obvious there will be a lot of points scored. The Saints look unbeatable and unstoppable at home on the offensive side of the ball, but when they grab a large lead there will be a lot of time for Burleson and the Lions offense to produce in garbage time. Over the last 3 weeks, Burleson has 20 catches for 185 yards and a touchdown. His counterpart Calvin Johnson has only 16 catches over that same span. Teams are starting to double up on Calvin and it is leaving room for Burleson to maneuver across the middle of the field. He is the dominant WR2 for the Lions. Oh, and did I mention that Victor Cruz, WR2 for the Giants, just had 9 catches for 157 yards and 2 touchdowns on Monday Night on the road against New Orleans? Burleson has his breakout game on Sunday night. Oh, and he’s available in 83.2% of ESPN leagues.

Eli Manning (QB, New York Giants) : It’s hard to ever recommend a quarterback that is coming off a short week, but Manning is also coming off of a 400+ yard, 2 TD game. The Giants can’t run the ball at all, and they are playing a must-win game against the undefeated Green Bay Packers. Will they win? Not even close. They are going to get demolished again, which means a ton of garbage fantasy points for Eli. Even though they are 11-0, the Packers are giving up 278.8 yards per game through the air – good enough for 2nd to last in the league. In order for the Giants to have any chance in this game, they are going to have to throw a lot. Don’t be surprised if Eli ends up around 50 pass attempts. He should easy clear 300 yards, and have at least a couple touchdowns. He’s averaging 316 yards and just under 2 touchdowns a game in his last 5 starts.

Roy Helu (RB, Washington Redskins) : Is it finally time to trust a running back that is coached by Mike Shanahan? My vote is yes, and Roy Helu is that guy. The 23 carries that Helu received last week was the most by a Redskins RB since Tim Hightower in week one. Add that he had 162 total yards, including seven catches, and Washington may have finally figured out they have to heavily involve Helu into the game plan in order to give themselves a chance to win. The biggest advantage for Helu is that he is healthy, and very well rested. Helu only has 27 carries over the last 6 weeks, so there should be plenty of gas left in the tank. The matchup isn’t great, as Rex Ryan and the New York Jets are known for their tough run defense; however, the Jets have given up 10 rushing touchdowns on the ground this year – good enough for the 7th most in the NFL.

DeAngelo Williams (RB, Carolina Panthers) : I know I know, he has had an absolutely abysmal season, and if it hadn’t been for his two touchdowns last week it would have been another average at best day for someone who was drafted as a top 15 RB. Hear me out on this one though, the 25 carries he has in the last 2 games is the most of any two game span this season. He also has 174 total yards over the last two games, which is more than Frank Gore, Michael Turner, Reggie Bush, and Mike Tolbert. If Carolina just finds a way to stay in the game, Williams will get his carries and the chance to control the clock. With defenses now zoning in on Newton closer, they seem to forget about whose coming out of the backfield. The last factor is that Carolina is playing at Tampa Bay, who is sporting the 3rd worst rushing defense in the league – averaging just under 140 yards a game, and has given up 13 rushing touchdowns in 11 games.

Antonio Brown (WR, Pittsburgh Steelers) : Brown started the year on the depth chart as the Steelers number 4 WR, but has worked his way up and is now Pittsburgh’s WR2. With defenses zoning in on Mike Wallace, Brown is becoming one of Roethlisberger’s favorite targets, and his production in the last month and a half shows that. Brown has 30 catches for 445 yards over his past 5 starts – both of those totals are higher than those of Mike Wallace. He only has one touchdown, but it hasn’t been due to a lack of targets. Cincinnati boasts a good pass defense, but 3 weeks ago Brown had 5 catches for 86 yards against them, which makes him a pretty solid flex start.

Dez Bryant (WR, Dallas Cowboys) : Bryant was supposed to be one of the most dynamic receivers this year, and when Miles Austin went down a lot of owners thought this would help Bryant even more. The exact opposite happened – defenses have been playing press coverage on Bryant all the way down the field and making somebody else on the field beat them, thus the emergence of Laurent Robinson. With Miles Austin expected to be back this week, the depth of the Cowboys receiving core will be back, and Bryant will be the beneficiary. Dallas is also playing at Washington – the 8th worst pass defense in the league.

Antonio Gates (TE, San Diego Chargers) : Missed 4 weeks earlier in the season due to injury, but after the Chargers bye it’s like he never lost a step. In the last 4 games Gates is averaging just under 6 catches a game, for 65.5 yards and has 3 touchdowns. Now, he gets to face a Jaguars defense that allows the 2nd most fantasy points to tight ends… you probably weren’t sitting Gates anyway, but now you can start him with confidence.

New England Patriots D/ST : Last week, the Patriots defense got destroyed by the Eagles, and Vince Young threw for over 400 yards. However, the 20th ranked fantasy defense of the Patriots are playing the 0-11 Colts this week, which doesn’t even have a fourth of the fire power that the Eagles do. Indy announced today that Dan Orlovsky will be starting over Curtis Painter, and if that makes you nervous when you deploy the Patriots defense you are crazy. Remember, Orlovsky is the QB that ran 5 yards out of the back of the endzone for a safety when he was with the Lions. He is also the QB that led Detroit to an 0-16 season. The Colts can’t run, they can’t throw, and Julian Edelman returned a kickoff for a touchdown a couple weeks ago so there is some hope there.

Every Patriot : As I just mentioned, they are playing the 0-11 Colts… it’s going to be a blowout. Brady, Welker, Branch, Gronkowski, Hernandez, Green-Ellis, and even Woodhead in 12 team of deeper leagues all should start.

Lance Moore (WR, New Orleans Saints) : If you are in a deep league and are looking for a risky play, give Lance a go. Anyone except for Jimmy Graham and Darren Sproles on the Saints roster is a risky start, but Moore does have 4 TD’s in his last 4 games… something to consider.

Automatic Starts: QB – Rodgers, Brady, Brees, Stafford, Newton, Fitzpatrick, Romo; … RB: McCoy, Foster, Rice, Forte, Peterson, Jones-Drew, Turner, Sproles, Gore, Murray, Matthews, McGahee, M. Bush (if McFadden out); … WR: Welker, Cal. Johnson, Smith, Cruz, Wallace, Jennings, Nelson, Fitzgerald, V. Jackson, White, Bowe, Nicks.

Sit Em:

Nate Washington (WR, Tennessee Titans) : Week 11 was a fluke. He is getting a significant amount of targets but he is the only receiving threat on that team since Kenny Britt got hurt. Not including week 11, Washington has averaged 2.4 catches for 24.8 yards a game. Those are barely rosterable numbers. If Tennessee wants to go any where they are going to have to learn how to run the ball, and although Chris Johnson finally figured out how to do that last week, don’t count on it to be consistent. Washington is a dud in an offense that hasn’t found a way to be successful as a unit all year. Leave Washington on your bench this week until he proves he can perform on a weekly basis.

James Starks (RB, Green Bay Packers) : I honestly don’t understand why he gets such high projections on ESPN each and every week. He hasn’t scored a touchdown since week 1 and he hasn’t had more than 13 carries in a game all season. The Packers are a strict pass offense, and with all the weapons in that lineup, Starks will not get the touches that he needs in order to be placed into your lineup. When Grant was hurt, Starks was given the opportunity to show the organization that he was going to be the guy going forward, and he failed to do that. With Grant healthy, there is just no reason to start him.

Toby Gerhart (RB, Minnesota Vikings) : If Adrian Peterson plays then this is a no brainer sit, but even if AP doesn’t play I still don’t think you can rely on Gerhart to produce. He got the start last week and scored a touchdown, but if he doesn’t score you are absolutely screwed. He has terrible hands out of the backfield, adds nothing to the passing game, and he just isn’t a downhill runner that can commend a starting job. He’s a great short yardage guy that you love to throw in on 3rd or 4th and 1′s, like how the Steelers utilize Isaac Redman, but as a starter he’s not going to do much. Last week he had 17 carries for 44 yards… so if you want a guy whose going to average 2.6 YPC… Gerhart is your guy.

Andre Johnson (WR, Houston Texans) : Coach Kubiak admitted that he thought he played Johnson a little too much last week after he hadn’t played in over 2 months due to injury. If Schaub was at the helm, I would say deploy him as you usually would. But he is coming into a situation with a quarterback who he has never taken reps from in his career. I believe that defenses are going to load the box in order to stop Arian Foster, but the risk of T.J. Yates being able to throw Johnson back into fantasy relevance just seems like a pretty large task. If you have no one else, then you have to start him, considering you drafted him real high, but don’t expect anything above 50 or 60 yards.

Anquan Boldin (WR, Baltimore Ravens) : I can make this one short. Cleveland gives up the fewest fantasy points to opposing wide receivers and he only has 7 catches in the last 3 games. There are definitely better options.

C.J. Spiller (RB, Buffalo Bills) : When Fred Jackson went down everyone thought that Spiller would step up and become a top ten fantasy running back. Well, we all learned real fast that Jackson was just an absolute beast this year and that Spiller won’t even come close to that hype. 19 carries for 55 yards last week, and now that Tashard Choice has been around for more than a week, expect him to get involved more in the offense and take touches away from Spiller.

Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas (RB, New Orleans Saints) : Sproles is the only back in this offense that you can start with any confidence. Ingram’s 13 carries last week were the most he’s gotten since week 7 – he’s just too unpredictable. Pierre Thomas is the same way, you can’t start him with any confidence. He’s only had 10+ carries in a game once this year, and with all the weapons in New Orleans you just never know who will be holding the ball in the end zone.

Tim Tebow (QB, Denver Broncos) : Denver will probably win again behind the spiritual powers of Tim Tebow, and I know that he runs the ball a ton which is great for fantasy; however, somebody is eventually going to figure him out. I think that it’s Willis McGahee who runs all over the Dolphins this week, not Tebow. I enjoy watching him play because the offense that Denver runs is like nothing else in the league, but I just can’t recommend that you start a quarterback who is averaging 105 passing yards a game in his last 3 starts.

Eric Decker (WR, Denver Broncos) : Touchdowns in 3 of his last 4 games… he also has only 7 catches in those 4 games. He is Tebow’s favorite target, but Tebow just doesn’t throw the ball enough to risk starting him.

Every Kansas City Running Back : Don’t try to get cute, neither McCluster, Jones, nor Battle has proved they deserved to be started in a fantasy lineup.

Owen Daniels (TE, Houston Texans) : Hasn’t had a touchdown since week 4, hasn’t had more than 71 yards or more than 4 catches in a game since week 5, and now his quarterback is T.J. Yates… find somebody else.

Jabar Gaffney (WR, Washington Redskins) : Had a great week two weeks ago and really showed some promise in the world of fantasy football. That is until last week when he showed us that it was an absolute fluke. He only has two touchdowns since week 1, and only one game of more than 100 yards receiving. On top of it all, he faces a New York Jets defense ranked 7th against the pass.

Matt Ryan (QB, Atlanta Falcons) : He has been a top 10 quarterback all year, but I don’t see him putting up anything special against a Houston defense ranked 2nd in the league in pass defense. The Texans only give up 176 yards per game through the air. Atlanta will implement Turner and Snelling more into their game plan and it will be a bland game for Ryan. He’s been hot the last 4 weeks, but Houston will put out the fire.

Green Bay Packers D/ST : This week’s game against the Giants is going to be an absolute shootout. The Packers are a top 10 fantasy defense, but you’ll want to avoid them this week in a game where they will give up a bunch of garbage yards in the second half.

Week 13 starts

Week 13 starts

QB

1. Tom Brady- Brady just has 361 passing yards and 3 TDs against an all-star Eagles pass defense, and is on a tear right now. Over the last 3 games, Brady has 11 TDs and 0 interceptions. The Patriots will win by 30 points and the only concern with Brady is if the first couple TDs are rushing or defense because he won’t have to do much in the second half of this game.

2. Aaron Rodgers- The best in the NFL QB is playing the New York Giants, who are 26th in pass defense. In case any of you forgot, Drew Brees just torched the Giants for almost 40 fantasy points.

3. Cam Newton- Newton has been a fantastic fantasy asset this year and may have his best  matchup yet against arguably the worst defense in the league. They are 28th in pass defense and 30th in rush defense. Newton should benefit from both of these weaknesses. Tampa Bay has also given up the most rushing touchdowns this season (15).

I cannot fault you for starting Drew Brees this week, but I like these guys even more.

RB

1. LeSean McCoy- McCoy has been a gem all year and it won’t stop against Seattle. Only once this season has McCoy failed to have a TD. He will get another TD this week.

2. Frank Gore- Gore has been struggling as of late, but should have fun against the worst rush defense the NFL has to offer (Rams).

3. LaGerrette Blount- Blount has had back to back hundred yard games and faces the 28th ranked rush defense (Panthers). He should have another hundred yard game and a TD.

4. Arian Foster- I drop Foster all the way to 4 this week because he plays the Falcons, who are second in rush defense. Also, with Leinart out for the year, there is no pass threat and teams can key in on Foster. He struggled in the latter half of last week’s win.

WR

1. Wes Welker- Welker had 115 yards and TDs last week against Philadelphia. He now heads up against a terrible defense in the Colts. This game figures to be a blowout, so he should have a huge first half.

2. Victor Cruz- Cruz is one of the hottest receivers in the NFL and has performed all year. Cruz had 157yards and TDs last week against the Saints and even though much of that came in garbage time, it is clear Cruz is Manning’s favorite target.

3. Laurent Robinson- It is time Robinson gets some credit. He has 7 TDs in his last 5 games. Even though Austin is coming back, Robinson’s last two games with Austin have been fantastic. Arizona figures to let up another TD to this undrafted receiver.

These are my only obvious starts at WR. The star receivers like Calvin Johnson and Mike Wallace are too cold and the rest have bad matchups.

TE

1. Rob Gronkowski- He has 6 TDs in his last 4 games and is Brady’s favorite red zone target by a ways. Again, the Colts is a pretty easy matchup. The Pats may put up 49.

2. Jimmy Graham- I think he is the best fantasy TE in the league, but has a worse matchup against the Lions. Graham had 82 yards and 2 TDs in Monday night’s blowout.

Week 12 Fantasy Studs

Quarterbacks

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers- His clearly the best quarterback in football and looks unbeatable and his numbers are out of this world with 31 passing touchdowns, some quarterbacks don’t even have that number in a season in a pass happy league.

Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions- After a 5 TD explosion against Carolina, I expect shootout between the Lions and Packers. It’s hard not to go with a high scoring game, his numbers have been fantastic and only have the upward spiral, Stafford is young but he is a very dangerous quarterback.

Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys- When has Tony not been outstanding on Thanksgiving in his career, he has only been getting better and November is his best month, play especially in Thanksgiving specials. Romo is reliable pick if Rodgers isn’t available because he’s a reliable for big numbers.

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers- Even with 4 interceptions last week, Cam Newtown still scored an outstanding 28 points, that’s incredible. He has to be in your lineup if you can get him and if you’re in a keeper league your set.

Tom Brady, New England Patriots- Tom Brady is machine like in his ability to just move his team forward no matter what he truly is the New England Patriots.  Brady has been able to pick up most defenses and is a nightmare to most defensive coordinators. The Patriots have the easiest remaining schedule expect Brady to show no mercy.

Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints- Brees has thrown for 300+ yards in 7 out of 10 games played so far this season, he is a safe bet that he’ll get you a lot of fantasy points. It doesn’t matter who are defensively, you can’t shut Brees down for the whole night.

Running Backs

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles- Vince Young played very well against the New York Giants and it should provide energy into the barely afloat Philadelphia Eagles. McCoy can be a killer in fantasy with long receptions and runs; he is likely to pick up tons of fantasy points.

Michael Bush, Oakland Raiders- Bush has been a great replacement for Darren McFadden and likely will more attempts even when McFadden returns. With Carson Palmer starting to feel the offense to feel normal and able to function at a high level.

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens- Ray Rice is the workhorse of the Baltimore Ravens and they will go as far as he can take them. The 49ers are a tough defense but Rice is solid back in the receiving and running game that it won’t matter.

Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars- The Jacksonville jaguars are terrible but Maurice Jones-Drew is still 4th in the league in rushing and is still a danger in the receiving game. Granted the passing game isn’t exactly ideal but Jones-Drew is still a very dangerous back not to be underestimated.

Arian Foster, Houston Texans- If the Texans make the playoffs it will be because of Arian Foster and his ability to just be himself and just take over games. If the Texans run Foster and Tate with some passing to both backs it could be a huge fantasy day for Foster.

Wide Receivers

Greg Jennings, Green Bay Packers- He had a very poor fantasy performance in most leagues but I would still start him because the Lions to be blunt have given up a lot of points this season so I see no reason not to start Jennings. Lions will most likely go after Jordy Nelson have his huge game, Jennings might have a big game.

Wes Welker, New England Patriots- He is Tom Brady’s No.1 receiver too bad the two tight ends especially Rob Gronkowski who has absolutely killing it lately with long touchdown receptions. Welker is Brady’s safety net and should be yours as well.

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions- Mega-Tron is a beast but he can’t be in every play especially if the Lions have any run. If the Packers plug up the run look for Johnson to start to prey on the Green Bay secondary and that is a very scary thought for the Packers but good news for the 1972 Miami Dolphins.

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys- With Miles Austin out Dez Bryant his Romo No.1 receiver even though Laurent Robinson has had big impact, Bryant is still the lead receiver. If Romo throws the ball to Bryant he will get it, case in point any touchdown he catches in the red zone he is unstoppable.

Cam over Rodgers this week

QB

Cam Newton- Cam Newton is a great fantasy start, regardless of matchup and this week, he plays the Colts. The Colts are 22nd in pass defense, only because they are last in rush defense. Newton will go for 30 points this week.

Aaron Rodgers- This is the first week in a while that Rodgers isn’t our number one projection. He isn’t a bad start, but the Lions are a little worrisome. Their pass rush challenges any QB and they have a fairly good secondary. They are 5th in  pass defense, but Rodgers will probably still go for 3 TDs.

Matt Stafford- With a 5 TD matchup last week, Stafford is pretty hot coming into a good matchup against the 31st ranked Packers pass defense. It certainly appears as though Stafford has had this in him all season. He was great early in the year, but faced a string of tough matchups. Stafford is back and will be back the rest of the year.

 Roethlisberger may be a good start here, but nobody else is. The Giants and Eagles are tough matchups for Brees and Brady. Rivers isn’t good enough.

 

RB

 Arian Foster- Foster is still the best fantasy back the league has to offer. He faces an average Jacksonville rush defense and he should capitalize.

LeSean McCoy- McCoy has had a sensational season thus far and faces a weak New England defense. Last game was the first game this season that McCoy failed to score a TD and he had 113 rushing yards. With Vick he is a definite start, but even if Young starts, he should be considered.

Marshawn Lynch- It is time to give credit where credit is due. Lynch has had a TD in his last 6 starts. In his last 3 starts, he has been handed the rock 82 times and it isn’t like the redskins will run up the score on anone.

 There is no reason to trust Rice and Michael Bush against San Francisco and Chicago respectively.

 

WR

Calvin Johnson- Johnson is still the best receiver the NFL has to offer, and even though he doesn’t have TD in a few weeks, he will have one against a weak Green Bay defense this weekend.

Mike Wallace- Wallace will have a huge game against a terrible Kansas City team. He may have had a tough last 3 games in fantasy, but he was playing stingy defenses. The Chiefs defense is far from stingy.

Laurent Robinson- This may sound like a crazy suggestions, but he gets targeted even more than Bryant and is one of the best receivers in the league when Miles Austin doesn’t play.

Vincent Jackson- He had a big game last week, but the risk is that he no shows more than not. He should play well this week though. Something tells me he plays a big part in Teebow’s second loss this season.

 

TE

Rob Gronkowski- Gronk is simply on fire. Similar to the beginning of the year, he has 5 TDs in his last 3 games. This time around, he is here to stay. Even though the eagles have a good pass defense, they won’t have an answer for him. He also has easy matchups the rest of the way.

Jason Witten- Witten has 5 TDs in his last 7 games. He’s not going to win it for you, but he won’t lose it and he has a friendly matchup against the Dolphins.

Jimmy Graham- Next to Gronk, Graham is the best fantasy TE right now. Even against the Giants, you can start him.

Barclay’s Must Starts This Week

Starts Week 11

 

QB

 

1.      Aaron Rodgers- As boring as it gets putting Rodgers at number one every week, he earns it every week. He may break the passing yards and passing TDs record this year. His lowest QB rating in the last 3 weeks is 140.3. Start him against a terrible Bucs defense.

2.      Tom Brady- Brady is hot right now and going against a terrible Chiefs team. He is a strong start this week and a strong start the rest of the year. The Patriots have the weakest remaining schedule in the league.

 

Nobody else makes any sense this week. Newton is going up against a deadly Detroit pass defense, Vick may not play and Eli Manning faces a great pass coverage defense in the Eagles.

 

RB

 

1.      Adrian Peterson- Peterson goes up against a weak Oakland rush defense and will get his touches. Oakland isn’t good enough to get ahead early it makes for a big day for Peterson and McFadden/Bush.

2.      Matt Forte- The Chargers are 23rd in rush defense and Forte is hot. He hasn’t had less than 12 points since week 3 and should have another big game.

3.      DeMarco Murray- Over his last 4 games, Murray is averaging over 8 yards a carry and 150 rushing yards a game. He has also demonstrated his ability to catch balls out of the backfield his last two games. I buy into him and Washington is a friendly matchup.

4.      LeSean McCoy- I can’t leave him out of the list because he has a TD in every game thus far. Any other week and he is the number 1 or 2, but I don’t like him as much this week. Michael Vick will probably be out or will be playing with broken ribs. If he doesn’t play Vince Young won’t be able to handle the Giants pass rush. McCoy won’t get a TD this week.

 

Ray Rice hasn’t been the same recently and without the TDs he’s been getting it would be more obvious. The Bengals also have the second best rush defense in the league. Frank Gore and Michael Turner are close, but ultimately too inconsistent to be considered.

 

WR

 

1.      Calvin Johnson- Last week was Johnson’s first week with less than 11 points. He still had 8 and played a stingy Bears defense. He is playing Carolina and should get 100 yards and a TD.

2.      Wes Welker- The Patriots have had arguably the toughest schedule so far. Although it may seem weird that Welker had  46 yards in a 37 point output, we have to assume it was a fluke. Kansas City is probably the worst team that the Patriots have played yet and Welker has fared well against the two worst teams that the patriots have played thus far. Against Buffalo and Miami, Welker had a combined 377 yards and 4 TDs. With the Patriots remaining schedule being the easiest in the league, Welker will be 1 or 2 the rest of the way.

3.      Greg Jennings- Pretty obvious why Jennings is a good play. The packers have a weak opponent and the best QB in the league. Jennings remains a consistently great fantasy player.

4.      Dez Bryant- Romo had a good week last week and the Redskins are a terrible football team. Brayn should run over them with ease and get at least one TD.

 

I don’t like any of the other receivers that much. Steve Smith has only 3 games with a TD this year and plays a stingy Giants defense. Hakeem nicks is way too inconsistent and arguably 2nd to Victor Cruz on his own team. Although Larry Fitzgerald had a great game last week, it was a fluke and he can’t do it again against the 49ers. He simply doesn’t have the QB.

 

TE

 

1.      Rob Gronkowski- It really might be Gronk’s world now. Gronk and Jimmy Graham (on bye) will be a popular debate every week for the number one slot. Gronk has an easy remaining schedule and an easy matchup against the Chiefs. No way this guy doesn’t top 10 points.

2.      Aaron Hernandez- Yep the 1 and 2 tight ends this week are on the same team. He didn’t have a great week last game but he has fared well against tough opponents this year and the Chiefs are about as easy as it gets. Last game was also only the 2nd game that Hernandez has played in this season and failed to score a TD.

3.      Jason Witten- With Romo hot and the Cowboys playing the Redskins, it is hard not to suggest Jason Witten. The Cowboys will have a big gay all around.

Barclay’s Best Plays

 QBs

1.       Aaron Rodgers- After racking up over 30 points last week against a supposedly great Charger pass defense, Rodgers has made it clear that he is the best fantasy option every week, regardless of matchup. He is playing the Vikings, who are 29th in pass defense, so the only concern is that the Packers will start running the ball after they are up 28-0.

2.       Cam Newton- He is averaging just shy of 300 passing yards per game. Last week was only the second week this season that Cam didn’t have a rushing touchdown, and he still passed for 290 yards and 3 TDs. Rodgers and Newton are the two best fantasy QBs with Brady, Vick and Brees lagging behind.

3.       Drew Brees- Brees is averaging 339 yards per game nad he is facing Atlanta, a team that Brees always tees off on. The Saints and Falcons games always seem to end up in the 30s.

4.       Michael Vick- Yes he had a bad day against the Bears, but he did last year as well. The Bears have a quick D-line and a good pass defense. The Cardinals don’t so look for Vick to have a big rebound performance.

RBs

1.       LeSean McCoy- McCoy has the most fantasy points of any RB and the Eagles have a much better offense than the Cardinal defense. This should be a blowout and McCoy figures to collect 20 points in the process.

2.       MJD- MJD is playing the Colts. For those of you that haven’t been paying attention, the Colts might have the worst rush defense ever.

3.       Arian Foster- It is never a bad idea to go with Foster. He has the best RB situation in football. He should put up big numbers this week, like he does every week.

4.       Matt Forte- Forte has the most total yards in the league (1241) and has a realistic shot of breaking the record this year. Detroit has the 28th ranked rush defense and the only reason he isn’t ranked higher is that Detroit figures to win this game, and will put a lot of pressure on Cutler. It is hard to see many long offensive drives for the Bears.

WRs

1.       Calvin Johnson- Johnson hasn’t had less than 96 yards since week 2, where he had 2 touchdowns. He is the best receiver in the league hands down and is on pace to get 22 TDs, just one behind Randy Moss’s record of 23 in 2006. Even though the Bears were impressive against Vick last week, they haven’t been a great pass defense this year. Johnson will most likely have a TD and 100 yards receiving again.

2.       Dwayne Bowe- The yards have been there for Bowe and the reason he hasn’t had a TD in four weeks is because the Chiefs have been outmatched on the field. Teams don’t get much worse than Denver so look for Bowe to bring in a TD and 100 yards this week as well.

3.       Greg Jennings- As previously stated, the Vikings have a terrible pass defense and the Packers have the best pass offense. Greg Jennings will contribute like he has all season.

4.       Mike Wallace- Wallace has had a TD in 4 of the last 5 games and hasn’t had less than 70 yards this season. The top 3 here are better starts for matchup reasons, but with Roethlisberger playing so well recently, it makes sense to start his best receiver.

TE

1.       Antonio Gates- Gates is back into fantasy world and deserves a start this week because of his impressive last 3 performances. Give him a shot this week against the Raiders.

2.       Jason witten- With Miles Austin out, it just means Witten will be getting more looks. He has had 4 TDs in his last 5 games.

3.       Jimmy Graham- He has had a couple off weeks now, but it still makes sense to start the TE leading in points.

Mike’s Must Plays

 Fantasy Studs

Quarterbacks

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers- Rodgers right now is best quarterback in the NFL and he is by far leading in fantasy points for quarterbacks this season. He is my number 1 choice fantasy quarterback this season and if you have a chance to get him then do it. No one has been able to stop him this season and I don’t see any defense stopping Rodgers right now.

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers- Newton is has been a super-star since his first snap this season but nobody and I mean nobody expected Newton to be this dynamic. Even though the Carolina Panthers are 2-6, they are a team that no teams in the playoff race want to face. He has become a more dynamic and play-making ability then Michael Vick and I think will have a more successful career.

Michael Vick, Philadelphia Eagles- After a disappointing loss to the Chicago Bears that drops the Eagles to 3-5 and in serious trouble of making the playoffs. While the Eagles are a mess, the Cardinals are more of a mess and Vick still is an elite quarterback that can break a play open at any time.

Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints- Brees is having an under the radar great season because everyone is focused on Rodgers and Newton and the collapsing Eagles. Brees has been able to dominate in the air on the regular basis. I have Brees instead of Brady because he is home and isn’t facing a three game losing streak. The Saints have been money in their division and at home since 2006 when Sean Payton, and Drew Brees took over.

Tim Tebow, Denver Broncos- While his numbers are still unproven, his upside is enormous especially with the rushing. Where quarterbacks lose fantasy points compared to running backs and receivers, it takes 25 passing yards for one point compared to 25 yards being 2.5 points instead. Tebow makes up for that difference when he rushes for over 100 yards and throws two touchdowns. Rushing touchdowns also get you an extra 2 compared to a passing touchdown. He will get you at least 10-15 points possibly even in the 20’s.

Running Backs

Arian Foster, Houston Texans- Since he has returned from his injury, he has been absolute fantasy stud in everyway. In 2 of the past 5 games Foster has had 100 receiving yards with the 100 plus yards he averages on the ground since his return. In the seven games he has played this season he is averaging 18.4 fantasy points per game.  In leagues where receptions are a plus, Foster is must start.

Matt Forte, Chicago Bears- Forte has only had one game this season where he scored under 10 points. He has recorded 20 plus points in three games this season and has scored 10 or more points in every week expect week 3 against the Green Bay Packers. With an average of 16.3 points a game Forte is a great choice in the running back role.

Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars- While Jones-Drew has not had an all-star fantasy season with a quarterback transition that happened at the beginning of the season.  So far this season he has 740 yards rushing with three rushing touchdowns. With the unexpected quarterback change, he has only 12 receptions and 85 yards. With the Colts 0-9, I expect the Jaguars to lean heavily on Jones-Drew.

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings- Peterson has really been feast or famine this season, scoring more than 23 or more in 4 games this season and has scored 10 or less in three games. Peterson however has 9 rushing touchdowns and 1 receiving touchdowns. In his previous meeting against the Packers he had a feast week, with 23 points, so start him this week.

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles- has been absolute fantasy stud this season, even though the Eagles are struggling at 3-5 this season. McCoy is averaging a monstrous 20.0 points a game and has not had a game where he failed to get at least 10 points, which is absurd for the fact that he hasn’t had off week yet. Week 4 was the only week where McCoy scored only points against 49ers where most of the success was in the receiving games.

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens- Rice has only had one down week against the Jaguars on Monday Night Football three weeks ago. Even when Rice has been ineffective in the run game, he has become a viable option as a receiver making up for his lost yardage on the ground. He has a total of 8 total touchdowns, with 6 coming on the ground.

Wide Receivers

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions- Mega-Tron has been an absolute beast this season with 11 receiving touchdowns and over 100 yards a game in each game he has played this season. There has been only one game where he was held out of the end zone; Johnson has 804 yards receiving with 47 receptions. No reason not to start Calvin Johnson.

Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers- Steve Smith is having a fantasy rebirth with Cam Newton as his quarterback. He has 46 receptions for 918 yards with 4 receiving touchdowns. Smith has only had two games where he scored under 10 points in a game. With Newton as the Panthers quarterback, Steve Smith is must start player.

Greg Jennings, Green Bay Packers- Jennings is having an absolute fantastic season along with every other Green Bay Packers receivers. In eight games this season Jennings has 48 receptions for 723 yards with 6 receiving touchdowns. He is averaging an amazing 13.0 points per game.

Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers- The Steelers this week have another tough divisional matchup against the upstart Bengals who are a surprising 6-2 on the season. Wallace has 47 receptions for 868 yards receiving and six receiving touchdowns. Wallace has only had two games where he scored under 10 points, both times scoring 7 points each and is averaging 12.9 points per game.

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys- It has been hit or miss this season with Dez Bryant but with Miles Austin out for another 2-4 weeks with a hamstring injury, I expect Bryant to be targeted more often. He hasn’t been as consistent or reliable as the other receivers because this is a matchup pick of the week. He has three games where he has 13 or more points and 5 games where he scores 10 points or less.

Wes Welker, New England Patriots- Besides Calvin Johnson, Wes Welker is having the best season for a wide receiver this season. On the season so far Welker has 66 receptions for 960 yards with 6 receiving touchdowns. He is easily on pace for over 1600 yards receiving and at least a dozen or more passing touchdowns. Welker is dominant force in any fantasy game.

Start em Sit em- Week 8

 

 

QB

 

1.      Drew Brees- He’s averaging 353.9 passing yards and 2.6 TDs per game. Brees may be playing a good pass defense (Rams), but he is also playing a terrible football team and there is no reason to believe he won’t run up the score on them a little.

2.      Cam Newton- Newton has the second most points in the league and is averaging 300 passing yards per game. He also has 7 rushing TDs, which is more than any RB in the league except for Adrian Peterson (8). Minnesota is also the 30th ranked pass defense, just in case you in need of overkill.

3.      Michael Vick- If you enjoy a little risk and/or love watching the Eagles, it might be time to start Vick. He toasted the Cowboys in both appearances last year and is coming off a bye week. Vick is also 5th in points per game this year and with Rodgers on bye and Brady facing the Steelers, there aren’t a whole lot of options.

 

Give Tebow another few weeks before starting him.

Brady is playing the Steelers and hasn’t been as explosive as he was early on.

 

RB

1.   Adrian Peterson- With the most rushing yards and TDs in the league, we expect Peterson to have another huge day against the 21rst ranked Carolina defense.

2.      Fred Jackson- He leads all RBs in points per game with over 20. The only game that he hasn’t had a TD in so far was the first game in which he had 112 yards. He averages nearly a 147 total yards per game and is the most consistent back in league. It won’t matter that he is playing a stout redskins defense.

3.    Arian Foster- Foster had over 40 points last week and despite a few fluke games this year, is 3rd in points per game amongst RBs. Jacksonville doesn’t have a good rush defense and the Rice performance was a fluke. He only had 8 carries.

4.   Ray Rice is a strong bounce-back candidate against a weak Arizona defense. He makes for a good flew option. You really shouldn’t ever be putting a receiver as your flex option.

Dallas is the best team against the run so don’t start LeSean McCoy.

Ingram may not be playing, but it won’t help Darren Sproles that much. He can’t run up the middle and it isn’t going to change. Sean Payton knows not to hand it off to Sproles too much. He hasn’t had more than 12 carries all year.

This may be Chris Johnson’s last chance to be relevant in fantasy, but I don’t trust him yet, even against the Colts.

WR

1.      Calvin Johnson- Nobody can cover this guy. He could take Revis at this point. He gets his every week and the defense doesn’t matter. Johnson has 4 more TDs than any other receiver (10) and the most points of any WR.

2.      Mike Wallace- The Patriots are ranked dead last in pass defense and Wallace averages over 104 receiving YPG.

3.      Steve Smith- He averages 117 yards a game and faces the 30th ranked pass defense in the league in the Vikings. Newton and Smith look to have huge days this week.

4.      Hakeem Nicks- Nicks had a good few weeks prior to the bye and there isn’t a cornerback on Miami that can cover him. He will have over a 100 yards and a TD.

5.      Wes Welker- Even against the Steelers, Welker isn’t a horrible start. Welker has over 130 YPG so far and leads all receivers in points. On a side note, he may break Jerry Rice’s one season receiving yards mark of 1,848 yards.

 

TE

1.      Jimmy Graham- He averages almost 100 YPG and has 225 yards more than any other TE. He also leads in points amongst TEs and plays a weak Rams defense this Sunday.

2.      Jason Witten- Witten has had a TD in his last three games. He will get plenty of looks against the Eagles in what I think will be a relatively high scoring game.

3.      Hernandez/Gronkowski- It is never a bad idea to go with a Patriots TE. There aren’t a lot of other options either.

 

 By: Barclay Douglas

 

Bye Week Emergency?

We are currently in the thick of the NFL’s bye season.  As a result 6 teams have off this week leaving several major fantasy assets on the bench.  Fantasy owners who had the foresight to make sure they drafted adequate replacements can ignore this.  However for the vast majority of the fantasy community hope is not lost!  There are several potential diamonds in the rough who are probably free agents in your league.  Without further ado, your week 8 bye week studs and emergency plays:

 

Important QB’s on Bye: Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler, Matt Ryan

Emergency Add: Christian Ponder/Matt Hasselbeck

First lets deal with Ponder.  Yes the former Seminole is an extremely erratic rookie.  But let’s not forget the Vikings still have a rock-solid running game with Adrian Peterson.  AP should continue to open up opportunities for Ponder to sling the ball like he did last week against Green Bay.  In addition, Ponder is facing a Carolina team that ranks 21st in passing yards allowed and 30th in yards per pass against (8.2).  Ponder should get plenty of opportunities to sling the ball and is widely available in standard formats.  Don’t hesitate to make him a spot-start if you are missing one of the three big bye week QB’s.

Hasselbeck is another QB who is widely available in standard formats.  If Ponder is already off the board in your league, don’t be afraid to jump on Hasselbeck for a spot-start.  The Titans host a struggling Indy team that is making me doubt whether or not they could slow down a high school offense.  Bottom Line: the Titans absolutely need this game.  Chris Johnson has not been anything close to his former self this year which means you will probably see Hasselbeck chucking the pigskin 30-40 times this week.  He should be a more than serviceable option for any owners who miss out on picking up Ponder.

 

Important RB’s on Bye: Darren McFadden, Michael Turner, Matt Forte, Shonn Greene

Emergency Add: Bernard Scott/Ben Tate/Maurice Morris

If Bernard Scott hasn’t been scooped up in your league yet jump on him.  Scott could be a money spot start as he gets the nod while Cedric Benson is suspended.  Even though Scott faces a fierce run defense in the Seahawks, he still has huge potential.  The Bengals love to run the ball, so don’t be surprised if you see Scott get 25-30 carries.  With that many carries Scott will be more than serviceable—should he find the endzone you could be looking at a huge week.  He is a solid RB2 this week.

If you pick up either Tate or Morris you are really taking a shot in the dark.  However Tate and Morris probably have the most potential of any available backs in standard leagues.  While Morris starts for the Lions, they are still a pass first team.  However with Matt Stafford likely to play hurt you could see the Lions running the ball a little bit more this week.  Morris may be able to catch a couple of balls this week and could see some action around the red-zone. 

Tate is perhaps the most intriguing back of the three, having serious boom or bust potential.  Even though Arian Foster is back and healthy, Tate could still have value this game based on the fact the Texans face Jacksonville.  Gary Kubiak has shown that when the Texans take a big lead he likes to rest Foster in favor of Tate.  Tate managed to rack up over 100 yards on the ground last week despite hardly touching the ball in the first half.  The Texans get what should be an easy matchup with the Jaguars this weekend.  If they get up by a lot Tate could see as many as 15 carries.  If Morris and Scott elude you don’t be afraid to take a shot on Tate.

Important WRs on Bye: Roddy White, Greg Jennings, Darius Heyward-Bay, Santonio Holmes, Jordy Nelson, Mike Williams

Emergency Add: Jerome Simpson/Torrey Smith

Simpson has really solid potential this week.  He’s totaled two 100 yard efforts in his last five games and could be in for another big game against the Seahawks.  If the Seahawks manage to take away the Bengals running attack, Simpson could be the benefactor.  Lately defenses have been coordinating their efforts to take away AJ Green and Jermaine Gresham.  As a result Simpson has been seeing a lot of single coverage and taking advantage of it. Simpson also seems to be developing a good rapport with rookie QB Andy Dalton.  If everything falls the right way, 80 yards and a TD are not out of Simpsons reach this week.

Torrey Smith actually has great upside this week and is widely available.  So far this year the Cardinals haven’t been able to cover anyone this year.  The Cardinals are allowing 8.2 YPA and have really struggled to protect against vertical passing routes.  Torrey Smith is an absolute burner with good size and a Mike Wallace like ability to kill defenses over the top.  Joe Flacco has already shown that he is not at all afraid to throw the ball deep to Smith and you can expect 4 or 5 more deep shots this week.  100 yards and a TD or two are a serious possibility.

Important TEs on Bye: Tony Gonzalez, Jermichael Finley, Dustin Keller

Emergency Add: Greg Olsen/Jared Cook

Olsen has great potential this week against the Vikings.  Minnesota has proven to be susceptible to the pass and Carolina have shown that they are not afraid to sling it.  In addition, Olsen is a great vertical threat that Newton has already connected with several times in the end zone.  Olsen is widely available as a result of sharing time with Jeremy Shockey.  However that should not scare potential owners away from a spot start.  Olsen has shown the last two years and the first part of this year that he is significantly better than Shockey.  In addition it is clear that Newton has developed a much better rapport with Olsen as he has made him one of his two primary red zone targets (the other being Steve Smith).  If Olsen is available in your league he is definitely your primary spot-start TE and may be worth holding onto for a couple weeks to see how the season plays out.

There are three things certain in life: death, taxes, and me wrongly predicting Jared Cook to break out.  So far he has had another ridiculously inconsistent year.  I think Cook’s fortunes change this week.  As I mentioned earlier, I think the Titans will be doing a lot of passing this week.  With Kenny Britt done for the year many thought Nate Washington would be the guy to fill the void—that hasn’t happened.  Cook is the most athletically gifted player not named Chris Johnson in that Titan offense.  In recent weeks Hasselbeck has begun to look Cook’s way more and more.  I really believe this is the week the Hasselbeck and Cook get it together.  They know they will be able to throw on Indy and you can bet the farm they are going to try.  I would expect Cook to get 8-10 targets this week—60 yards and a TD is realistic in this game.  If you can grab Olsen, don’t be afraid to start Jared Cook with confidence.

By Erik Preuss

Survival NFL Fantasy Week 7

Top 4 Quarterback Selections

1.Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers: can you bet against Aaron Rodgers with a 6-0 record and he has just been a beast this season for fantasy football owners. Rodgers has the most fantasy points for any quarterback with 157 points and averages an outstanding 26.2 average fantasy points per game. In a standard scoring league Rodgers has scored more than 21 points in every game so far this season. Going against a struggling Minnesota Vikings team looking for a new quarterback with a shaking secondary at best. Look for Rodgers to have a monster game 300+ yards passing with at least 2 passing touchdown.

2.Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers: The new fantasy superstar is Cam Newton, he is the best thing to fantasy owners since Michael Vick’s run last season. Newton is 2nd amongst quarterbacks averaging 22.5 fantasy points a game. Even though Washington is giving up the 26th most fantasy points to a quarterback a game, I still think Cam Newton is a must start is almost every league. Newton this week most likely have at least 200 yards passing, also he’ll have at least one rushing and passing touchdown a piece at the minimum.

3.Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints: Is going against a shell of a team with the Colts without Peyton Manning most likely for the whole season. Brees so far this season has racked up the 4th most fantasy points for a quarterback and is averaging 21.0 fantasy points a game. If Brees can avoid throwing interceptions, his stock looks even better especially playing the Manning-less Colts.

4.Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions: Stafford is throwing at least two touchdowns a game and has only one game this season where he has thrown for under 225 yards one time so far this season. He has thrown four interceptions and lost 3 fumble but has 15 passing touchdowns on the season. He might have a few games where he gets 13-19 points but he is still averaging a 5th best 19.7 fantasy points per game.

Top 5 Running Backs

1.Matt Forte, Chicago Bears: After two weeks where he got 11 and 14 fantasy points respectively but he looks to have a big week against the Tampa defense, which has given up the 15th most fantasy points to running backs this season. He is averaging 16.2 fantasy points a game, which is tied for 5th best with Charger running back Ryan Mathews.

2.Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens: So far this season Ray Rice has scored at least 15 points per game in non points per reception league. He had his best game this season against the Pittsburgh Steelers but hasn’t had those numbers since then. Jacksonville rushing defense has been horrible this season giving up 140 yards a game on the ground the last three weeks. Rice is also averaging a superb 18.2 fantasy points a game.

3.Daren McFadden, Oakland Raiders: After losing Jason Campbell with a broken collarbone, the Raiders made a huge splash during the trade deadline in acquiring disgruntled quarterback Carson Palmer. While Palmer is a former Pro-Bowl quarterback, he is out of football shape, so the Raiders will most likely try and rely on Darren McFadden, who has torched defenses so far this season. He is averaging 16.7 fantasy points a game and the Kansas City Chiefs have been one of the worst in giving up fantasy points to running backs this season.

4.Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons: While the Detroit Lions have been one of the better defenses against the run but last week got absolutely destroyed by Frank Gore and San Francisco 49ers, rushing for over 200 yards and scoring two rushing touchdowns. The Lions might have lost confidence in some run defense but it’s always a safe bet to go with Michael Turner, he has scored 20+ fantasy points on three different occasions this season.

5.Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings: It’s either feast or famine with Adrian Peterson this season, recording a point total of 9 on two different occasions this season and 8 on another game. While Peterson is start if you own him but I would choose any of the four previous running backs because I think Peterson will just have an average game.

Top 5 Wide Receivers

1.Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers: The Arizona Cardinals have been middle of the pack giving up fantasy points to receivers but the Steelers passing offense out guns the Cardinals pass defense almost every day of the week. Wallace has a touchdown reception in 4 out of 6 games so far this season. Arizona has a few injuries which should be a good game for Wallace, who has over 100+ receiving yards in 3 games this season.

2.Marques Colston, New Orleans Saints: Had his first big game of the season with over 100 yards receiving and a receiving touchdown. Before last week the most points he has had a game this season was 8 and he was injured and missed three games but he is healthy and should have good game against the winless Colts.

3.Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions: Last week against the San Francisco 49ers was the first week this season that Mega-tron was denied a touchdown this season. He leads the league in receiving touchdowns with nine. Even though he didn’t score a touchdown he did however gain 113 yards receiving. So far this season Johnson is averaging 17.8 fantasy points per game this season.

4.Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City Chiefs: After a horrible start to the season the Kansas City Chiefs have been rolling the last 2 games with Bowe getting at least one touchdown reception in each of the last 3 games. Since getting 1 point, week 1 Bowe has gotten 11, 12, 16 and 24, so it would be smart to hang on to Bowe for this week.

5.Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers: He is leading the NFC in receiving yards and is only behind Wes Welker. Last season most experts thought his career in Carolina might be over now, he is a sure thing Pro-Bowler this season. The Carolina Panthers are the most dangerous 1-5 team this league has seen in awhile. Smith is averaging 13.3 fantasy points a game. He is the favorite target of Cam Newton and looks to be that way for the near future and I only see Smith’s numbers improving as Newton and the Panthers improve.

6. Greg Jennings, Green Bay Packers: Has been a must start for the past year and a half with Aaron Rodgers breaking out of his shell last year and is just craving up defenses so far this season. No one has been able to stop the Green Bay Packers and I don’t think Minnesota is going to stop them, especially after that performance on Sunday night football, where the Bears humiliated them.

7. -Miles Austin/ Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys: Both Dez Bryant and Miles Austin have both been fantasy beasts in the past and future. The Rams have been an absolute mess this entire season and I see Tony Romo, Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and Jason Witten all to have monster games. They have been torched all season, no reason to think they wont again.

Michael Ferraro

Theme created by: Roy David Farber. Based on concepts from: Hunson's Black and Blue Eyes theme. Powered By: Tumblr.
1 of 10