What We Learned in Fantasy Football from Week 5
These are all the fantasy facts that are fit to print, so…LET’S GO!
Jacksonville Jaguars at Buffalo Bills
Since Ryan Fitzpatrick took over in Week 3, he has been a fantasy stud. This last week, he had 220 yards and 3 TDs. That is 20 fantasy points from a Bills player. Note, too, that it is his second straight 20-point game. He is owned in only 6 percent of leagues and you should be in that percentage; he is an excellent Bye Week replacement. Also, if you’re in the neighborhood, WR Steve Johnson is worth a look. He has scored in each of the last 3 games that Fitzpatrick has started. Fitzpatrick loves him in the redzone.
Denver Broncos at Baltimore Ravens
The Denver air assault continued against the Ed Reed-less Ravens secondary last Sunday. It is now safe to say that you can count on Orton and his rotating cast of boom and bust receivers as solid fantasy starters. Last week, it was the Eddie Royal show with a TD and 113 yards. The week before that, it was Lloyd with 169 yards and a TD. Either way, all the parties involved in the Broncos passing game are good bets. Hint: Pick up Jabar Gaffney.
Ray Rice finally had a legitimate fantasy day with 133 yards and 2 TDs. Oh, and Willis McGahee is no longer the goal line back.
Also: Denver’s Matt Prater hasn’t missed a kick yet. He’s put up a total of 40 fantasy points. More than Buckhalter and Maroney combined.
Kansas City Chiefs at Indianapolis Colts
There is no fantasy news to report. Peyton Manning threw for a season-low 244 yards with no TDs and an interception. For the Chiefs, Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones split carries 60-30 in Charles’ favor. Charles had the better average, but only had 87 yards and fumbled the ball. Bummer.
Green Bay Packers at Washington Redskins
The Packers were already dropping like flies, but this game really doomed their season for mediocrity with the loss of Donald Lee, Jermichael Finley, Ryan Pickett, Clay Matthews and Derrick Martin. And to top it off, after the game, Aaron Rodgers revealed that he had a concussion.
St. Louis Rams at Detroit Lions
Just as Sam Bradford and Mark Clayton were becoming the best of friends, connecting on 23 completions and 2 TDs for 306 yards this season, their 6-yard hook up this week will be their last. Mark Clayton will need season-ending surgery and is on injured reserve.
One of the Lions’ story lines going into this game was whether or not Jahvid Best would be able to perform with his “turf toe” injury. If you are ready to get rid of him because he only had 67 yards this week, don’t. Shaun Hill had no problem going to the air on Sunday, scoring 3 TDs with 227 yards. Best wasn’t at his best, but I promise his best days are to come. Best isn’t a bust, his turf toe wasn’t the best thing that could happen to him, but the best thing to take away from this week was that he is still the best fantasy player on the Lions. (See what I did there?)
Chicago Bears at Carolina Panthers.
I was really looking for DeAngelo Williams to have a breakout game, but there was literally nothing going on the Panthers offense. Jimmy Clausen was just 9 of 22 for 61 yards and an INT. I have an idea: start any defense against the Panthers.
Ok, I know I said terrible things about Clausen, but there literally aren’t words in the dictionary to describe Bears second string QB Todd Collins. He threw 4 picks, totaled just 32 yards and completed 6 of 16 passes. What the Bears lacked in the air, Forte made up for in the ground with 166 yards and 2 TDs. If you still aren’t starting Forte, you have to watch the 68-yard TD on You Tube. It will make you a believer.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Cincinnati Bengals
Coming off of their Bye Week, the Buccaneers were prepared. They were able to pick off Palmer three times and even recovered a fumble. I have been a huge Mike Williams fan for a while now, but his 99 yards and a TD really won me over. If only he could have gotten that extra yard to get him to 100.
The receiver that is getting all of the spotlight these last two weeks isn’t Chad Ochocinco, it’s Terrell Owens. In the past two weeks, TO has 324 yards and 2 TDs. Enough said.
Atlanta Falcons at Cleveland Browns
Roddy White will continue to stay “Mr. Dependable” and Michael Turner will continue to fall short of his fantasy potential. One week though, he has to get the yards and the TDs right?
If you followed my suggestion to pick up the Falcons Defense, you probably fell in love with me. I love you too, that’s why I told you about that fantasy gold mine. They managed to get a pick six, 3 sacks, a forced fumble and 2 INTs. Not to mention holding Cleveland to just 10 points. In most cases, that was a 19-point fantasy game. Hooray!
New York Giants at Houston Texans
Hakeem Nicks is now the No. 1 WR in New York, and with good reason. Nicks has 6 TDs and 409 yards this season. So basically, you can count on him for 80 yards and a TD each game. The Giants defense is really coming into their own after a rough start to the season, holding league-rushing leader Arian Foster to just 25 yards.
Matt Schaub has been pretty pathetic this year so far. Andre Johnson and Schaub are still completing passes, but not nearly at the volume of last year. Still, both are must starts.
New Orleans Saints at Arizona Cardinals
I’m going to come out and say it. MADDEN CURSE. Now, I know you are thinking that I’m crazy, but hear me out. First, Reggie Bush gets hurt. Then, Pierre Thomas gets hurt. Then, Brees injures his knee. I made a pretty aggressive trade to get Brees because I expected huge numbers. But the past two weeks against pretty bad defenses, Brees put up 15 and 13 points. He faces Tampa and Cleveland next. If he continues to gain just 13 fantasy points, then it’s official–he has been cursed with the worst Madden Curse of all time: mediocrity. I’d rather have him on IR than hovering around 14 points each week in my starting spot. We’ve all grown to expect 30 point games out of Brees and until he reaches 20 again, this will be considered a Madden Curse.
Tennessee Titans at Dallas Cowboys
Kenny Britt is the biggest receiving threat in Tennessee and is quickly earning his spot over the injured Justin Gage. Britt has scored a TD in the last 3 games. This week, they will face the Jaguars, who will undoubtedly give him his forth. Even when Chris Johnson has huge games like the 131 yard, 2 TD game he had this week, the passing game has still flourished.
I don’t know what is wrong with the Cowboys this year, but they are somehow huge fantasy producers. Romo had 406 yards and 3 TDs with 3 INTs. 166 of those yards were to Miles Austin. Earlier in the week, the Cowboys said they were going to use Felix Jones more, and they weren’t lying. Jones (whom I’ve always regarded as the fastest RB in the NFL) looked great, racking up 109 yards on the ground.
San Diego Chargers at Oakland Raiders
What isn’t to like about this matchup (unless you are a Chargers fan)? There were huge fantasy players on both sides. The Raiders defense was extremely tough, blocking two punts for defensive scores. Also, Tyvon Branch sealed the win with a 64-yard fumble recovery for a TD.
Philip Rivers had a huge day with 431 yards and 2 TDs. Half of those stats went to Malcolm Floyd, who is officially the next Vincent Jackson. The Chargers continue to go out of their way to prove that they don’t need Jackson. It feels like they have been doing the same with Ryan Mathews. Though Mathews has fumbled the ball a few times this season, Mike Tolbert fumbled this week and averaged less than 1 yard a carry. It’s time for Mathews to take over again. Against St. Louis this week, Mathews should get decent yardage and see the end zone again.
Philadelphia Eagles at San Francisco 49ers
With Michael Vick sidelined, Kolb has played pretty well, but LeSean McCoy has definitely benefited the most. LeSean was playing on a cracked rib but still racked up 92 yards and a TD. McCoy is the real thing and I expect this offense to lean heavily on him even after Vick returns.
San Francisco has not won yet this season after being ranked highly in preseason polls, but this week they showed a spark. If you own any of these highly ranked offensive players for the 49ers, you had to be happy this week. Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree each had 100+ yards with a TD. Frank Gore had 70+ all-purpose yards with a TD as well. And Alex Smith had 309 yards with 3 TDs and 2 INTs. Not too bad at all.
Minnesota Vikings at New York Jets
If you are like me, you were overwhelmed with the story lines; in one corner, you had Brett Favre’s return to New York with the whole “Penis-gate Scandal” looming overhead and in the other corner, we were awaiting to see Randy Moss’ return to the Vikes. I was glued to the TV. Though Brett Favre lost the battle, he looked better than he has all season, slinging a 37-yard pass to Randy Moss who made an immediate impact picking up key 3rd downs while racking up 81 yards. But the player who benefited most was Percy Harvin with his 2 TD and 97-yard game. This new format is nearly identical to last year. Basically Sidney Rice=Randy Moss. Watch Moss play the exact same deep threat roll that Rice played last year.
The Jets won the game because of kicker Nick Folk who was 5-for-5 in FGs, even striking from 53 yards out.
That’s all today, Folks. (See what I did there?)
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