FantasySavvy Football: Buy Low, Sell High

By Kevin Lewis

Buy Low

RB Eddie Lacy– Lacy was a top 7 pick in the majority of leagues during the draft process. In the first two games, he has 25 carries for 77 yards and five catches for 29 yards with no touchdowns. Lacy has gone up against two of the best run defenses in the sport in Seattle and the New York Jets and the Packers have trailed for much of those contests.

The Detroit Lions, the Packers week 3 opponents, let up an average of 19.5 PPG to opposing RBs which is good for 9th in the NFL. That game is going to feature a lot of points so there is a good chance Lacy scores. The window to buy him low probably extends through that game. After that, the schedule softens as he faces the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings. His perceived value will probably be rehabilitated by that point. If you want him, now is the time to try.

RB Montee Ball-Montee Ball was a popular pick amongst pundits and fans alike for a breakout campaign. That may still happen but it’s been a pretty slow beginning for Ball as he has 35 carries for 127 yards(1 TD), 5 catches for 45 yards in two contests. He hasn’t been bad but he hasn’t proven to be worth the late first/early second that was likely used to get him. The person who owns him might be willing to part ways.

I will say this about Ball in that I don’t think NOW is necessarily the time to target him. His upcoming schedule is @Seattle, bye, ARI, and @NYJ. It could be rough sledding over those four weeks and I think he could come at a pretty reasonable price after the week 6 tilt with the Jets. If you can get him now for a reasonable price, go for it. I suggest you wait it out a bit and keep a close eye on the developments with Ball over the next month.

TE Rob Gronkowski– For most rational people I don’t think the first two weeks for Gronkowski has been a grand surprise. We expected him to be limited on reps, and for him to take a bit to get his legs underneath him. In the first two weeks, he has eight catches for 72 yards and a touchdown.

This weekend, the Patriots square off with a putrid Raiders team in a game that should feature a ton of running/clock burning in what will be a rout. The last time these teams faced off, S Tyvon Branch held Gronkowski to 1 catch for 4 yards and that was at the height of Gronk’s powers. I don’t expect that again but it could be a slow afternoon for #87. If it proves to be, send an offer for him. Gronk wrecks games. Fantasy football is all about finding people exactly like that, injury risk be damned. Scared money don’t make money.

SELL HIGH

RB Matt Asiata- This is less about what he’s done and more about what he is. He simply isn’t very good at football. I don’t know the agendas of the Vikings coaching staff but they started this kid last week and he had 13 carries for 36 yards along with 5 catches and 48 yards and a receiving TD on a busted coverage by the Patriots. Jerick McKinnon, the extremely gifted backup, has some kinks to work out in pass protection in order to stay on the field. He gave up a sack in three pass protection opportunities last week and that needs to improve if his reps are going to increase. There is someone in your league that may be desperate for RB help and are enticed by Asiata’s volume. If you can afford to, SELL SELL SELL.

RB DeMarco Murray– I say this with a disclaimer. I’m really high on DeMarco Murray this year as I do think he will finish as a top 5-6 back assuming he plays 14+ games. That said, his value will NEVER be higher than what it is right now. Through two games, he has 51 carries for 285 yards (2 TD), and 4 catches for 31 yards. His start leads to a lot of questions though. Is Dallas going to remain committed to the run? How long is DeMarco going to last if he keeps getting touches at or near this rate? Do you move him now because of his injury history and his heavy workload? If you aren’t getting a great haul, he probably should be kept but there is no time like the present to move him.

RB Giovani Bernard- Bernard is an absolute PPR dynamo thus far as he is one of two RBs in the league with 125+ yards both rushing and receiving (Le’Veon Bell). In two games, he has 41 carries for 138 yards (1 TD), and 11 catches for 141 yards. His 3.3 YPC is a little worrisome but if he keeps getting the volume he is getting, any concerns about that will be alleviated. With WR AJ Green likely sitting out the game against Tennesee this Sunday, it’s a game where Bernard could put together another monster stat line. With Jeremy Hill looming in the background, Bernard’s value may never be higher than it is after this Sunday. It’s worth putting out feelers on him to see what the market is like. He’s off to a torrid start.

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FantasySavvy 2012: Week 16 Player Rankings (Super Bowl Rankings)

Thanks for following this year everyone, it’s much appreciated. This season flew by, but once again it was another great season. I hope all of you dominate in your Fantasy Super Bowls. Since it is the Super Bowl, I am going to shorten the lists a bit and take out some of the very irrelevant players. I should have some NBA, MLB and College Hoops stuff coming in the next few weeks and of course I will be back next year for Football, but even stronger. If you ever need to contact me you can @FantasySavvy on Twitter. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all, God Bless. Go get those Championships!

Quarterbacks

  1. Cam Newton vs OAK
  2. Tom Brady @ JAC
  3. Aaron Rodgers vs TEN
  4. RG3 @ PHI
  5. Tony Romo vs NO
  6. Drew Brees @ DAL
  7. Peyton Manning vs CLE
  8. Andrew Luck @ KC
  9. Eli Manning @ BAL
  10. Colin Kaepernick @ SEA
  11. Ben Roethlisberger vs CIN
  12. Matt Schaub vs MIN
  13. Sam Bradford @ TB
  14. Carson Palmer @ CAR
  15. Russell Wilson vs SF
  16. Andy Dalton @ PIT
  17. Joe Flacco vs NYG
  18. Chad Henne vs NE
  19. Ryan Fitzpatrick @ MIA
  20. Jay Cutler @ ARI
  21. Nick Foles vs WAS
  22. Brandon Weeden @ DEN
  23. Jake Locker @ GB

Running Backs

  1. Adrian Peterson @ HOU
  2. Arian Foster vs MIN
  3. DeMarco Murray vs NO
  4. Ray Rice vs NYG
  5. Alfred Morris @ PHI
  6. Marshawn Lynch vs SF
  7. C.J. Spiller @ MIA
  8. Jamaal Charles vs IND
  9. LeSean McCoy vs WAS
  10. Vick Ballard @ KC
  11. Stevan Ridley @ JAC
  12. Frank Gore @ SEA
  13. Darren McFadden @ CAR
  14. Trent Richardson @ DEN
  15. Reggie Bush vs BUF
  16. Knowshon Moreno vs CLE
  17. Darren Mcfadden @ CAR
  18. Darren Sproles @ DAL
  19. Matt Forte @ ARI
  20. BenJarvus Green-Ellis @ PIT
  21. Steven Jackson @ TB
  22. Chris Johnson @ GB
  23. DeAngelo Williams vs OAK
  24. Ahmad Bradshaw @ BAL *questionable, should play
  25. Montell Owens vs NE
  26. Shonn Greene vs SD
  27. Jonathan Dwyer vs CIN
  28. Chris “Beanie” Wells vs CHI
  29. David Wilson @ BAL *bump up 15 spots if Bradshaw is OUT
  30. Ronnie Brown @ NYJ
  31. Mark Ingram @ DAL
  32. Bilal Powell vs SD
  33. Alex Green vs CLE *questionable
  34. Jonathan Stewart vs OAK *questionable
  35. Bryce Brown vs WAS
  36. Shane Vereen @ JAC
  37. Pierre Thomas @ DAL
  38. Brandon Bolden @ JAC
  39.  Jackie Battle @ NYJ
  40. Issac Redman vs CIN
  41. Marcel Reese @ CAR
  42. Danny Woodhead @ JAC
  43. Peyton Hillis vs IND
  44. Dijuan Harris vs TEN  * move up to Greens Spot if Green OUT

Wide Receivers

  1. Dez Bryant vs NO
  2. Andre Johnson vs MIN
  3. A.J. Green @ PIT
  4. Brandon Marshall @ AZ
  5. Demaryius Thomas vs CLE
  6. Vincent Jackson vs STL
  7. Randall Cobb vs TEN
  8. Wes Welker @ JAC
  9. Reggie Wayne @ KC
  10. Steve Smith vs OAK
  11. Pierre Garcon @ PHI
  12. Victor Cruz @ BAL
  13. Marques Colston @ DAL
  14. Cecil Shorts vs NE
  15. Mike Wallace vs CIN
  16. Steve Johnson @ MIA
  17. Miles Austin vs NO
  18. Michael Crabtree @ SEA
  19. Danny Amendola @ TB
  20. James Jones vs TEN
  21. Hakeem Nicks @ BAL
  22. Eric Decker vs CLE
  23. Lance Moore @ DAL
  24. Justin Blackmon vs NE
  25. Brandon Lloyd @ JAC
  26. Greg Jennings vs TEN
  27. T.Y. Hilton @ KC
  28. Danario Alexander @ NYJ
  29. Torrey Smith vs NYG
  30. Denarius Moore @ CAR
  31. Anquan Boldin vs NYG
  32. Jeremy Maclin vs WAS
  33. Larry Fitzgerald vs CHI
  34. Josh Gordon @ DEN
  35. Antonio Brown vs CIN
  36. Sidney Rice vs SF
  37. Brian Hartline vs BUF
  38. Kenny Britt @ GB
  39. Donnie Avery @ KC
  40. Mike Williams vs STL
  41. Golden Tate vs SF
  42. Brandon LaFell vs OAK
  43. Jason Avant @ WAS
  44. Brandon Gibson @ TB
  45. Darrius Heyward-Bey @ CAR

Tight Ends

  1. Jason Witten vs NO
  2. Aaron Hernandez @ JAC
  3. Jimmy Graham @ DAL
  4. Heath Miller vs CIN
  5. Owen Daniels vs MIN
  6. Jermaine Gresham @ PIT
  7. Greg Olsen vs OAK
  8. Dennis Pitta vs NYG
  9. Antonio Gates @ NYJ
  10. Vernon Davis @ SEA
  11. Brandon Myers @ CAR
  12. Jermichael Finley vs TEN
  13. Kyle Rudolph @ HOU
  14. Marcedes Lewis vs NE
  15. Dwayne Allen @ KC
  16. Scott Chandler @ MIA
  17. Dallas Clark vs STL
  18. Joel Dreessen vs CLE
  19. Jacob Tamme vs CLE
  20. Anthony Fasano vs BUF
  21. Brent Celek vs WAS
  22. Tony Moeaki vs IND

FantasySavvy 2012: Week 16 Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em (Super Bowl Edition)

As seen on FP911.com, make sure to check there for tons of great additional information.

Congratulations, you made it to your Super Bowl, this is what it is all about. All the research, pickups, lineup decisions, etc, come down to this moment. Regardless of what happens this week, you have had a very successful season and have done a great job managing your team. I hope you all of you that are reading this take care of business this week and finish the deal. Thanks for reading everybody and I hope to see you all back next season. Also, I would like to wish everybody a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. This is truly the best time of the year.

You won’t see the obvious names on here, that would be pointless. Maybe occasionally to give you a reminder, but rather we are looking to identify some guys that you may be on the fence with and encourage you to either start or sit them. Matchups will be broken down, stats will be used, some projections will be provided and some “gut” feeling will be mixed in. But when it comes down to the come down, it’s your “gut” you need to roll with.

*Players listed in order of projected effectiveness in the start ‘em category and ineffectiveness in the sit ‘em category.

Quarterbacks

Start ‘Em

Andrew Luck @ Kansas City

Luck has been held under 200 yards passing in his last two games, but he’s going to break out of that against the Chiefs. The Colts are going to get a ton of opportunities with the ball since the Chiefs offense is so inept. Look for Luck to approach 250 yards with at least two TD’s.

Colin Kaepernick @ Seattle

Tough matchup here, but Kaepernick still is worthy of starting. He may be held to just one passing TD, but Kaep will likely approach at least 40 yards rushing and should be able to pass for over 200 making him a solid fantasy play.

Sam Bradford @ Tampa Bay

Danny Amendola returns and Bradford throws for 377 yards and three TD’s. Bradford should continue to wheel and deal against the Bucs horrible secondary, ranked dead last in points allowed to QB’s. Expect around 250 yards passing with at least two TD’s.

Sit ‘Em

Jay Cutler @ Arizona

The Cards are third best against QB’s and Jay Cutler is having a very mediocre season. While the Bears may get a ton of possessions in this game, Cutler can not be trusted.

Josh Freeman vs St. Louis

Freeman fooled all of us, it appears he is the average QB he has always been. I didn’t want to believe in this guy, but after he went on such a hot stretch mid-year I thought he had turned a corner. However, after last week where he could not even manage to produce a single point for the Bucs offense against the Saints defense, it is pretty apparent this guy does not have what it takes to take that next step. You can not turn back to this guy this week, not in the Fantasy Super Bowl.

Russell Wilson vs San Francisco

Wilson is having a stellar rookie season with 21 TD’s, just nine interceptions and nearly 3,000 yards passing. It’s pretty hard to recommend benching him this week after he accounted for four TD’s last week, but this isn’t the Bills, it’s the 49ers. Last time he faced them he struggled completing just nine passes, throwing for just 123 yards with no TD’s. He most likely will play better this time around, but there is a chance he could be held without a TD once again.

Running Backs

Start ‘Em

DeMarco Murray vs New Orleans

DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys

Murray being out for several weeks may have been a blessing in disguise for the Cowboys with Murray now being fresh and running hard as ever. This is just an excellent matchup for DM this week and I really forsee a monster game from him. His physical style matches up perfectly against this Saints defense. Murray should easily go over 100 yards and finish with at least 1 TD.

Vick Ballard @ Kansas City

Ballard now has the starting job all to himself and is taking full advantage of it. He is a fairly talented back and he should enjoy a nice game against the Chiefs. I expect him to find the endzone and approach and possibly have over 100 yards rushing. He ran for 100 yards against the Texans; he can easily do it against the Chiefs.

DeAngelo Williams vs Oakland

After years of just pure Fantasy Horribleness, DeAngelo Williams has once again returned to Fantasy relevancy. He is actually starting to run with purpose and is getting the job done for Fantasy Owners. Well, with Oakland coming up, you really can’t ask for a better matchup. Now, DeAngelo does still have the potential to burn you, but I think it’s safe to say he should finish with around 100 total yards in this game and has a decent chance to find the endzone. The Panthers offense is rolling right now and DeAngelo is going to continue to benefit.

Sit ‘Em

Bryce Brown vs Washington

LeSean McCoy owners, such as myself, wish he had come back sooner after Brown threw up two duds in a row; but with the news McCoy will in fact return this week, Brown needs to be on benches. I wouldn’t expect any more than 10 touches, but he may not even get that, the fumbling problems are going to cost him playing time in this game.

Beanie Wells vs Chicago

Beanie went off for three TD’s last week against Detroit, but please don’t start him against the Bears. This has 15 carries for 40 yards written all over it. Stay away.

Jonathan Dwyer vs Cincinnati

Dwyer is still technically the starter, but isn’t seeing many carries with just 15 in his last two games and is not playing at a high level. He has scored in two of his last three games, but against the Bengals tough front four he needs to be avoided.

Wide Receivers

Start ‘Em

Steve Smith vs Oakland

Carolina Panthers WR Steve Smith

After a extremely slow start to the season, Steve Smith has been heating up the last few weeks as Cam Newton’s play has stepped up. Smith has two 100-yard games and two TD’s in his last three games and has an excellent matchup against Oakland. Smith could have his best game of the season.

Cecil Shorts & Justin Blackmon vs New England

Both are strong options in a game where the Jags are going to be throwing the ball all day long. Cecil Shorts is the better option from Blackmon, but both should be able to put up respectable numbers and get it done for your Fantasy Squads. Look for Shorts to hit 100 yards and Blackmon to near that mark as well.

Michael Crabtree @ Seattle

Crabtree continues to be targeted heavily by Kaepernick every week and he needs to be in your lineups in the Fantasy Super Bowl. Crabtree has 23 targets, two 100-yard games and two TD’s in his last three games.

Sit ‘Em

Josh Gordon & Greg Little @ Denver

I would steer clear from both of these guys this week, especially Little, with the Browns facing Champ Bailey in coverage and the Broncos pass rush. After a slow start, Denver has creeped it’s way all the way to seventh best at defending the WR position.

Larry Fitzgerald vs Chicago

Tip for next year: Avoid WR’s who play with horrible QB’s. Fitzgerald has been a disaster this season with the likes of John Skelton, Kevin Kolb and Ryan Lindley throwing him the ball. Despite the name and although you may be desperate this week, try to steer clear from Fitz against the Bears.

Danario Alexander @ New York Jets

Danario killed owners last week by putting up the infamous doughnut, but if you were lucky enough to advance despite his performance, you need to look at benching him this week. Antonio Cromartie has done an excellent job all season on No. 1 WR’s and he should be able to contain Alexander.

Tight Ends

Start ‘Em

Greg Olsen vs Oakland

Like they do with every other position, the Raiders also let up a ton of points to Tight Ends, ranked 4th worst. Olsen has been extremely steady the past six weeks with four 50 yard games and and four TD’s. Start him with confidence.

Dennis Pitta vs New York Giants

I faced Dennis Pitta in two leagues last week who went off for 100 yards and two TD’s and you can guess how that turned out. Unbelievable. But Pitta needs to stay in your lineups as Flacco will continue to look his way, especially in the redzone. Pitta has 19 targets and three TD’s in his last two games.

Antonio Gates @ New York Jets

San Diego Chargers TE Antonio Gates

Being a Jet fan, I know how bad they have been historically at covering Tight Ends. Their LB’s just don’t have the speed or athleticism to keep up with the athletic Tight Ends of the league. Gates finally got back into the endzone last week and I expect him to put up respectable numbers against the Jets. Look for around 60-70 yards with a possible score.

Sit ‘Em

Joel Dreesen & Jacob Tamme vs Cleveland

These guys hurt each other’s value and it’s hard to predict which one will have the bigger impact each week. Regardless, both have been mediocre all year. The Browns are also 5th best at defending the Tight End position.

Kyle Rudolph @ Houston

After scoring in three consecutive games, Rudolph hasn’t scored and has just 23 yards receiving in his last two games. Christian Ponder is playing pretty awful at this point in the season and Rudolph isn’t going to contribute for you team unless he scores. He’s way too risky to use, look for something more consistent.

IDP’s

Start ‘Em

London Fletcher @ Philadelphia

London Fletcher, Washington Redskins

Fletcher has had another strong season with 52 tackles for the Skins and now faces the Eagles who are allowing the most points to LB’s.

Wesley Woodward vs Cleveland

Woodward has been a force for the Denver defense all season and is a great play against the Browns who are allowing the 8th most points to Fantasy LB’s.

Sit ‘Em

Cortland Finnegan @ Green Bay

Bad matchup for Finnegan who will be squaring off against the talented Packers WR’s and Aaron Rodgers who is extremely smart with the football.

Richard Sherman vs San Francisco

Sherman will be limited this week as the 49ers aren’t turning the ball over much and are allowing the 2nd fewest amount points to CB’s.

Fantasy Savvy- Start Em’ Sit Em’ Week 9 Edition

Were nine weeks into the 2011 season, the fog is settling, the sunshine is glowing, and things are starting to appear more clear in Fantasy Land. Overall, pretty sound recommendations in Week 8 with the advisement of starting Jackie Battle, Heath Miller, and Antonio Brown while suggesting to sit the extremely disappointing Chris Johnson. There is no doubt that more thunderstorms are ahead, we can never be perfect, but we continue to press forward through this vast season and use the knowledge gained throughout the year to build as much momentum as possible going into each new week.

 

Disclaimer: Kickers and Defenses are left out each week, also I try to leave the most obvious selections out. Start Tom Brady!!

 

 

QB’s Start Em’

 

Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys vs Seattle

I wanna start out discussing Tony Romo, who has left owners slightly disappointed thus far. In his last two games, Romo has thrown just 2 TD’s and is only averaging around 180 passing yards. Romo does have four 300-yard passing games this season, but at the same time he’s been inconsistent with three games where he’s failed to throw for more than one TD. Owners were simply expecting more high-class performances from Romo when they drafted him. As much as I hate to make excuses for Romo, the guy played through a pretty bad rib injury, had both of his starting wideouts suffer through injuries, while working under a pretty poor offensive line. The point is, things are looking up for Romo. His schedule eases up bigtime, his wideouts are healthy and they have found new success in the running game with DeMarco Murray. Romo’s uptick will begin this week against Seattle. Seattle isn’t terrible against the pass ranked 18th and having allowed just 8 Passing TD’s, but this is a matchup that Romo and his counterparts Miles Austin, Dez Bryant and Jason Witten can exploit. Dallas will be focused and ready for this game following the brutal loss against Philly, and with plenty of possessions for the offense created by the Dallas defense, look for Romo to approach the 300-yard mark and finish with at least 2 TD’s.

 

Matt Cassel, Kansas City Chiefs vs Miami

I don’t think I’ve recommended Cassel all year, but he and his AFC West leading Kansas City Chiefs are starting to play good football. Props goes toTodd Haley, after starting 0-3 with reports of him being on the hot seat, he got it turned around without Stars Jamal Charles and Eric Berry as the Chiefs have reeled off four straight wins to take the division lead. Cassel hasn’t been lights out but he does have a respectable five TD’s in his last 3 games while throwing for over 250 yards in three out of his last four games. In Week 5 against against the winless Indianapolis Colts, Cassel threw for four TD’s and 257 yards. Cassel may not throw four TD’s, but I expect his numbers to be very solid against the only other winless team in the NFL, the Miami Dolphins. Look for around 250 yards passing with at least 2 TD’s, making Cassel a respectable start in Week 9.

 

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons @ Indianapolis

We’ve pointed out Ryan’s brutal numbers in past editions, but so far this year Ryan has only thrown for more than one TD, one time. The fourth-year QB has looked inaccurate, and the arm strength has been lacking more than ever it seems. However, Ryan has two things working for him, first the bye week came at an ideal time and second, coming off that bye he gets an easy matchup against the Colts, who have allowed the most passing TD’s (15). If Ryan doesn’t get it going this week then I don’t know when he will. Julio Jones is returning, he got two weeks to clear his head and re-focus and now they face the lowly Colts. Ryan could throw three TD’s in this matchup.

 

Sit Em’

Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears @ Philadelphia

Just stay away from this one if you are contemplating Cuter at all. Philly’s talented secondary is finally playing to their potential and these Chicago wideouts simply cannot cause any problems for them. The Bears will focus on running the football and winning this game on defense.

 

Matt Schaub, Houston Texans @ Cleveland 

The Cleveland secondary led by Joe Haden is for real ranking 2nd against the pass and 3rd in points allowed to QB’s. With Andre Johnson’sstatus in question once again, Schaub needs to be benched.

 

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Buffalo Bills vs New York Jets

Fitzy started out hot, has cooled down some but still has been very serviceable this season with 14 TD’s and 1700 yards through seven games. But this is a week to sit him against the Jets. New York has allowed just four passing TD’s as they are ranked #1 when it comes to defending Fantasy QB’sRevis will slow Johnson, Cromartie can handle David Nelson and Bills TE Scott Chandler doesn’t really pose a threat to Nickelback Kyle Wilson or Safety Jim Leohnard.

 

 

RB’s Start Em’

 

Ben Jarvus Green-Ellis, New England Patriots vs New York Giants

The Law Firm is frustrating, one week he is excellent and the next he could throw up a complete dud like last week. It was crazy to see 35 year-oldKevin Faulk step into this offense after more than a year and a half off and play more snaps than Green-Ellis. BJGE was solid the three weeks prior to last, so I think he gets back to it in Week 9 against the Giants who are allowing the 25th most points to Fantasy RB’s. I expect him to find the endzone in this game and finish with around 60 yards rushing.

 

Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams @ Arizona

Jackson has been running surprisingly well of late, last week tearing up the Saints defense for 159 yards and two TD’s. This week he gets another good matchup against the Cardinals who have allowed a league-high 11 rushing TD’s. But after this game I would look to trade Jackson, I think the he starts to wear out down the stretch as he faces a very tough playoff schedule against the Seahawks, Bengals and Steelers. Start Jackson this week and then sell high.

Jackie Battle, Kansas City Chiefs @ Miami Dolphins

Battle made the list in Week 8 and didn’t disappoint finishing exactly with what we predicted with 70 yards rushing and a score. So we ride with Battle again in solid matchup against the Dolphins. The Chiefs should move the ball and Battle will be the benefactor around the goal line. Look for similar numbers to last week.

 

Sit Em’

 

DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys vs Seattle Seahawks

This is hard for me, because I love the way Murray has been running and and also because of the fact that I own Murray in a couple of leagues, but I am trying to avoid the obvious choices. Murray does have a very tough matchup against Seattle’s run defense that is allowing a league low 3.2 Yardsper carryThey have also only allowed five rushing TD’s which is tied for 11th best. Again, this is a tough choice here, but if you have better options then Murray this week, stick with that. I think there is a chance Murray could find the endzone but I don’t think he finishes with over 60 yards rushing.

 

Ryan Torain, Washington Redskins, San Francisco 49ers

Ok, this one is easy. The Redskins are playing horrible football right now, Torain who is the #1 back now that Tim Hightower is out for the year isn’t producing, although he hasn’t had a chance to produce. But the 49ers have been absolutely stout against the run allowing just 74 yards per game and one rushing TD all year. I think Torain still has some value this year and will have some nice games, but this is most definitely a matchup you want to avoid at all costs.

 

Rashard Mendenhall, Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens

Mendenhall has been a fantasy bust this year with just one 100-yard game all season. The Steelers will not be able to run the ball against the Ravens and their third ranked run defense. Like Torain, this is another matchup to avoid however you can.

 

WR’s Start Em’

 

Miles Austin & Dez Byrant, Dallas Cowboys vs Seattle Seahawks

Both Austin and Byrant were shut down and held under 30 yards receiving last week. Austin hasn’t done anything of significance since breaking out for three TD’s in Week 2. But this week the Cowboys pass game will start getting back on track and I believe both Austin and Bryant will have fairly solid games. Look for both to finish with over 75 yards receiving and at least one if not both of them to score. Austin is a good trade target right now, as owners could be down on him, now is the time to buy, same with Bryant although he will be higher priced.

Jon Baldwin, Kansas City Chiefs vs Miami Dolphins

The talented 6’4 230-pound rookie returned from injury in week 8 and finished with 82 yards and a score. Baldwin showed his big play ability and also showed fairly solid route-running on Monday night against San Diego. I believe Baldwin is going to have some nice games to finish this season and this week he could prove to be a very nice play against the Dolphins and their 27th ranked pass defense. 

 

Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers vs Pittsburgh

Last week I talked about Brown and how his rapport with Big Ben would continue to grow throughout the season. Brown now has 16 catches in his last two games for 169 yards and a score. With Hines Ward still banged up and questionable, Brown will find open room against Baltimore as they focus on Mike Wallace. Brown is a nice trade target, he could really finish this season strong.

 

Sit Em’

 

Steve Johnson, Buffalo Bills vs New York Jets

You guys should know by now that I love Stevie Johnson, but again it’s two words, Darrelle Revis.

 

Nate Washington, Tennessee Titans, vs Cincinnati

Washington finished with two TD’s last week one catching and one running, but this week he must be benched against the Bengals and their 9th ranked pass defense. Washington will produce little, keep him reserved.

 

Darrius Heyward-Bey, Oakland Raiders vs Denver

Bey coming off the bye, two weeks to build rapport with Carson Palmer, looks like a decent start right? Not really, Palmer stinks until proven otherwise and Heyward Bey will draw Champ Bailey for most of the game. Bey is most effective on deep routes and is not really a great route runner, so Champ who will have his eyes on Palmer while watching Bey and will prevent Bey from doing much. Champ might pick off a pass that is attempted to Bey deep, remember that I wrote this.

 

TE’s Start Em’

 

Brent Celek, Philadelphia Eagles vs Chicago Bears

The Eagles are finally starting to utilize the talents of Celek, probably because they realize they need to get him the ball if defenses are trying to take away Maclin and Jackson. As most of us know when Vick was in Atlanta he loved his TE Alge Crumpler, so this could possibly be an emergence by Celek here. The last two weeks Celek has 11 catches for 136 yards and two scores. Stick with Celek as he has the hot hand right now and is also facing the Bears Defense who are letting up the 2nd most points to Tight Ends this season. 

Fred Davis, Washington Redskins vs San Francisco

I pointed out last week that Davis was an every week starter regardless of matchup. He is the Skins number one target and will be as long as Santana Moss continues to be sidelined. The 49ers defense as we know has been great this year, but they are allowing the 6th most points to Fantasy Tight Ends. Davis has to be in your lineup.

 

Dustin Keller, New York Jets @ Buffalo

I have selected Keller a few times and he’s let me down, but I like this spot here. Coming off the bye I think the Jets will make it a point to get Keller more involved. Buffalo also hasn’t been great at defending the Tight End, ranked 24th. 

 

Sit Em’

 

Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers vs Baltimore Ravens

Miller is really the only Tight End I could see benching this week, the rest were so obvious It’s not even worth stating their names. Guys like Scott Chandler, Zach Miller, Kevin Boss, womp womp. I really love the way Miller has been playing the last two weeks, he has been running great routes and Ben has been targeting him a bunch, but Baltimore is #1 in defending Tight Ends, allowing just 6 points a week on average. I wouldn’t totally avoid Miller, but if you have better options stick with them based on Baltimore’s great defense of the Tight End position.

 

IDP’s Start Em’

Tamba Hali, LB, Kansas City Chiefs vs Miami Dolphins

The young, talented Hali had two sacks and 3 tackles last week against the Chargers on Monday Night and it gets even better this week against Miami and Matt Moore who was sacked six times last week by the Giants. Look for Hali to finish with at least two sacks in this game and put constant pressure on Moore.

 

Aldon Smith, LB,DE, San Francisco 49ers @ Washington

Smith was recently named NFC Defensive Rookie of the month for October. He has seven sacks so far and has been very impressive for a rookie. He should be able to get to John Beck and enjoy a nice game as he and the 49ers defense wreak havoc on the Skins.

 

Quentin Mikell, S, St. Louis Rams @ Arizona

Kevin Kolb is questionable for the Cardinals and that means two things. First, John Skelton might start and second a lot of running with Beanie Wells. Mikell could pick off a pass from the brutal Skelton and will have a chance to rack up plenty of tackles defending against the run.

 

Sit Em’

 

Eric Weddle, S, San Diego Chargers vs Green Bay

Weddle picked off two Matt Cassel throws last week, but this week he goes against the hottest QB in the NFL in Aaron Rodgers. He won’t be picking off any passes this week and the Pack really don’t run the ball all that much so Weddle’s tackles will be limited as well.

 

Darrelle Revis, CB, New York Jets @ Buffalo Bills

I am betting the Harvard grad Fitzpatrick won’t be as careless as Matt Moore and challenge Revis like Moore did. Revis has 3 Int’s in his last 2 games, but I don’t think he gets one here as Fitz plays it very safe against him.

Best Waiver Adds-Week 7 Edition

Last week we discussed the likes of Tim Tebow, Doug Baldwin, Steve Breaston all who had bye weeks, but if they are still available make sure to go grab them. Others like Darrius Heyward-Bey, Donald Brown played,  produced and hopefully helped your fantasy team. If you missed last weeks article you can check it out here.  Every Tuesday night we discuss the best pickups on our radio show as well so make sure to check that out at Blogtalkradio.com/FantasySavvy.   This week some injuries and some trades open up some spots for newcomers to come in and contribute. Nothing too exciting on the market this week, but definitely some guys that are worth picking up. The following players are listed in order.

 

Carson Palmer, QB, Oakland Raiders

The only reason I am ranking Palmer first is that he is going to be the starter for Oakland for the rest of the year and possibly into the future depending on how he performs. The Raiders went out and traded a 1st and 2nd rounder for him, so there is no doubt he will be the starter as soon as he is ready. Reports are that Palmer is back to 100% and his arm strength has returned to its old form. But I have serious doubts about Palmer and how effective he will be. He still can’t move in the pocket and has proven to be very turnover prone in recent years. However, if you need to add a QB desperately, then Palmer is your guy. Who’s to say he won’t rejuvenate his career and have a good year with the Raiders. I would think he would increase the value of Darrius Heyward-Bey, Jacoby Ford, Denarius Moore and Kevin Boss. He will step into a nice young offense with a strong running game. If Palmer is at least somewhat back to his old self he is easily better than Jason Campbell. Again, I am banking against Palmer to do anything significant, but I do believe there is a good chance he will out perform Campbell and improve this offense. If you are having serious QB trouble, go pickup Palmer as he will be the starter for the rest of the season.

Ronnie Brown, RB, Detroit Lions

I’m ranking Brown second for a couple of reasons. As you all should know by now, Brown was traded to the Lions for Jerome Harrison. Jahvid Best suffered yet another concussion, which is his 3rd concussion in the last 5 years. I haven’t believed in Best because I doubted his durablitly and I was mad because last week he seemed to be proving me wrong, but here we go again, Best with another concussion. Concussions are nothing to play around with and although Best could possibly play this week, there is also a chance he could be out multiple weeks. If he suffers another concussion he could be out for the year, who really knows. Based on all that, I think Brown is a solid add. Yes he had that dopey pitch on the goal line a couple of weeks ago, but if you’re asking me to pick between Ronnie Brown and Maurice Morris, I am going with Brown. Brown, I believe, if given the chance, will show that he’s deserves to start over Morris and if Best is out for a long period of time that will happen. So if you have a spot on your roster and if you’re a Jahvid Best owner, make sure to grab Brown, because he could end up being very valuable this year.

DeMarco Murray, RB, Dallas Cowboys

The Oklahoma rookie will now take over the starting spot as Felix Jones will be out for 2-4 weeks with a high ankle sprain. Jones, like Best is also very fragile, with a history of being hurt throughout his career. Tashard Choice will also be in the mix, but it appears that Murray will get most of the touches. The Cowboys offensive line hasn’t opened up many lanes and Murray hasn’t looked very good, but if your a Jones owner or need a Running back in the short-term, Murray is a must add. The Cowboys still have an explosive offense, despite what we saw from them last week and Murray will get a good amount of chances around the goal line. There is also a chance that Jones could be out longer than 4 weeks or maybe come back and re-aggravate his injury leaving Murray to take the reins for a good amount of games. For the short-term I like Murray better than Ronnie Brown but for the long-term I only rank Brown over Murray because of Jahvid Best’s concussion history and how that could possibly keep him out for a longer time than Jones.

Danny Woodhead, RB, New England Patriots

After Woodhead got hurt two weeks ago, a lot of owners cut him so he should be available in most leagues. The Patriots will continue to us Woodhead, although it could be more sparingly due to the slight emergence of Stevan Ridley. But if you’re in a PPR league, I believe Woodhead will still have some value as he usually is good for around 3-5 catches and 30-60 total yards per game. If there is an injury to Ridley or Ben Jarvus then Woody earns a bigger role, playing in one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL. Woodhead is just a guy that is a good add because of the situation he is in.

Maurice Morris, RB, Detroit Lions, Tashard Choice, RB, Dallas Cowboys

I think both of these guys will take backseats in their respective backfields, but nonetheless they are worth adding if you can’t get DeMarco Murray or Ronnie Brown. Maurice Morris really isn’t anything special at all and even if he somehow ends up getting more reps than Ronnie Brown, don’t expect him to produce much. Choice hasn’t looked good at all this season, which is surprising because at one point he was a pretty talented runner. That said he still has a chance to earn the #1 role while Felix Jones is out and is worth adding, again if you can’t land Brown or Murray.

Sneaky Picks- Mark Clayton, WR, St. Louis Rams, Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos, Lance Kendricks, TE, St. Louis Rams

Both Thomas and Clayton are returning from injury to play in Week 7. Clayton as we remember was Bradford’s favorite target last year before getting injured and being ruled out for the year. Thomas was a talented rookie who had some big games but also was knocked out for the year. Thomas has a chance to be the #1 wideout as Lloyd is now gone and Eric Decker and Eddie Royal really aren’t #1 types. The biggest factor is Tebow, how well will he connect with Thomas and how effective will he be throwing the football. Clayton on the other might not be the #1 because of the presence of Brandon Lloyd and Danario Alexander, but he has the rapport with Bradford and Bradford is definitely more capable when it comes to tossing the rock. Either way, both guys are very talented wideouts who are worth adding. There is a very good chance that one of these guys could prove to be very valuable for the rest of the year.

Kendricks was on everybody’s radar to start the year after a strong preseason. But after week upon week of doing zip, many owners let him go. Last week Kendricks had a fairly good game hauling in 4 passes for 71 yards. There is no questioning his talent and maybe with the Rams schedule starting to ease up, Kendricks will start to produce like most owners thought he would.

Should be owned already but if not go add- Montario Hardesty, RB, Cleveland Browns

Call it the Madden curse or Hillis just breaking down after taking a big workload last year, but Hardesty might soon take over as the #1 back in Cleveland. If he’s out there go grab him as Hillis left last week’s game with a hamstring injury and has not run well at all this season.

Risky options but worth a shot- John Beck, QB, Washington Redskins, Christian Ponder, QB, Minnesota Vikings, Arrelious Benn, WR, Tampa Bay Bucs

Beck and Ponder both step into the starting role as Mcnabb and Grossman have both been benched. Ponder likes to run a lot, but I really have little faith in his throwing ability. Beck has Shanahan behind him, so I think he’s the QB to own of the two. Benn has always been talented and now looks to be fully healthy from his ACL injury, there is a chance he emerges as a good option in Tampa.