Fantasy Football "Start Em's" by Justin Lonero
We are through the half way point in the NFL season, and there have been some pleasant, and unpleasant surprises. Week 8 Calvin Johnson showed us why is he the best wide receiver on Earth. The Jaguars continued to show us that it doesn't matter what country they play in, they are unpleasant to watch. Steven jackson returned, and his effort was depressing. On the flip side Andre Ellington ran like Gale Sayers in his debut. The show goes on week 9.
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1. Cam Newton (vs.Atlanta)-Cam Newton is in mid season form. He has 8 touchdowns and 0 turnovers in his last 3 games. Week 9 he will face the Falcons in Carolina. Atlanta has allowed 16 touchdown's and a 105.5 QB rating to opposing quarterbacks. Newton should have a feast.
2. Terrelle Pryor (vs.Philadelphia)- Pryor took the opening play from scrimmage 93 yards week 8 to the house. His numbers were pedestrian the other 59 minutes of the game. He is a poor man's Cam Newton. Pryor is 3-0 at home this season, and will look to continue rolling at the black hole week 9 against the Eagles. Five quarterbacks have had multiple touchdown games against Philly. They have also allowed 15 touchdowns, and over 2,500 yards through the air. Pryor seems to be getting better week to week, he couldn't get a better matchup at home.
3. Alex Smith (@Buffalo)-Smith is the ultimate game manager who wont lose the game for you, but will not electrify his audience either. He has become Jamaal Charles's best friend, and Dwayne Bowe's nemesis. Week 9 the undefeated Chiefs travel to Buffalo to face a defense that has given up 21 touchdowns in 8 games. He may not put on a clinic, but with 6 teams on the bye his services will be formidable.
1. Ryan Mathews (@Washington)- The mere fact Mathews is atop this list is hilarious, yet typical,at this point in a " Fantasy Football" season. He will be looking to run for 100 yards in his third straight campaign. Running back' are averaging 4.5 yards per carry against this porous Washington unit. Danny Woodhead will take away Mathews receptions out of the back field, but Mathew's can be expected to carry the bulk.
2. Giovani Bernard(@Miami)- It would appear that the Bengals are finally, slowly, transitioning Bernard into their prize horse. He is as versatile, as any young running back in the NFL. Week 9 he will face a Dolphin team that has allowed 9 touchdowns in 7 games. He is a solid RB2 moving forward.
3. Chris Johnson(@St.louis)-Johnson has been showing sporadic shades of CJ2k lately. In PPR leagues he will have 4-5 catches periodically. Week 9, he will face the Rams who lost a tight one week 8 to Seattle. The Rams have allowed 8 touchdowns, in 8 contests. Those numbers suggest CJ will find the end zone this week. I expect 100 yards of total offense.
1. Josh Gordon(vs. Baltimore)- The trade deadline came and went and Josh Gordon remains a Brown. He has been everything, and more then what was expected. Week 9 Gordon will face a middle of the pack Raven secondary. He is averaging 5 catches a game, and 97 yards. The sky is the limit for his potential, the shaky quarterback play, often translates into " what if ?"stories.
2. Denarius Moore(vs. Philadelphia) -Moore has a dream matchup week 9 when he faces the lonely Eagles. The eagles secondary has allowed 14 touchdowns, and over 1700 yards to opposing wide receivers. They have also allowed 139 receptions, and 6 players have had multiple touchdown games. Moore has to be started with confidence this week at home.
3. Terrance Williams(vs. Minnesota) Aside from the Dez Bryant pout party, there is a solidified wide receiver that plays on the Cowboys who has gained less notoriety. Williams has scored and 4 straight games. He will face a Viking secondary that has allowed 106 receptions
to their opposition. He is a WR3 presently but that is changing week to week. He is a strong flex play or bye replacement this week.
1. Greg Olsen (vs.Atlanta) Greg Olsen owns the Atlanta Falcons. He reaches the end zone every time they play. This year the Falcons have allowed 5 touchdowns to tight ends. Its a dream matchup for Cam Newton, Olsen looks to be one of the primary recipients. Last week he was only targeted 4 times and has been dealing with a foot injury. He is nonetheless a TE 1 in all formats.
2. Jordan Cameron(vs. Baltimore) Last week Cameron caught all four passes he was targeted on against the Kansas City Chiefs. He is on pace for 98 catches, 1200 yards, and 12 touchdowns. He has been an elite tight end since the preseason and continues to be among the best. Week 9 he will face the Ravens at home, who have allowed 450 yards, and four touchdowns to tight ends.
3. Antonio Gates (@Washington)- Week 9 Gates will face a Redskin defense that has allowed 6 touchdowns, in seven games, to tight ends. The Skin's have allowed 3 tight ends in the last three games to score. There are games he appears as youthful as ever, and some where father time is doing it's job. He remains a TE 1 in all formats. They are having fun in San Diego spreading the ball around, expect Gates to find the end zone week 9.
Fantasy Football "Sit Em's"
by Bill Bakos
Week 8 Sit Em's Recap
Terrelle Pryor scored 15 points on the first play of the game (93 yd td run) and finished the day with 15 points in standard scoring. Chew on that for a minute. Andy Dalton torched the NYJ. I’m still not a believer because I think he misses way too many passes, but I will avoid listing him as a sit so I don’t whiff again. A lot of injuries kept guys out of the lineup. Of course if I type this Sunday that would be more accurate but far less helpful. My general rule of thumb is I am iffy on a key injury (hamstring, head, shoulder) and I will not play a guy unless he practices in the all important Friday practice. You can find me on twitter here: @Bakosw
1. Matt Ryan (@ CAR) – Poor Matty Ice. Should have been a top 5 QB this year. I cannot start him with Harry Douglas as his #1 WR. Not with the running game in shambles. Tony Gonzalez has too much pride to roll over and pack it in but defenses will key on him. Carolina on a roll and they’re at home. Matty Ice on the road and not in a dome also hurts his value.
1. Bilal Powell/Chris Ivory (vs NO) – Timeshare, timeshare, timeshare plus Drew Brees. Saints can put up points quick which will eliminate the run game for NYJ. Geno Smith will have to rely on his arm and hope he does not throw any more passes to the opposing team.
1. Antonio Brown (@ NE) – With or without Talib the Patriots have locked down an opposing #1 threat. Jimmy Graham had 0 catches, Mike Wallace was irrelevant, and Julio Jones was kept in check. I expect Belichick to focus his defensive game plan on Antonio Brown. He could still be a WR3 in PPR only because Pittsburgh simply has no one else.
2. Torrey Smith (@ CLE) – Smith had 7 receptions for 85 yards in week 2 vs CLE but he has only been able to find the endzone once this season. As I said last week Joe Haden is tough. A very unfavorable matchup for Smith and the Ravens.
3. Vincent Jackson (@ SEA) – On the road in SEA with a rookie QB at the helm versus a team that was embarrassed by getting a win on MNF. Expect a statement game from Richard Sherman & co. which is bad news for a 0-7 TB team. Unless of course they’re tanking for Clowney.
1. Martellus Bennett (@ GB) – Big question mark here with Cutler’s injury. Josh McCown in at QB. Coach Trestman probably will emphasize on the running game with Forte and Bush in the red zone trying to eliminate any mistakes a backup QB might have. Passing game will still revolve around Marshall and Jeffrey.
2. Scott Chandler (vs KC) – Chandler saw 11 targets (season high) last week Thad Lewis throwing a lot of check downs his way. KC defense is not New Orleans defense. KC’s defense is really tough and I expect Chandler to be on the line more for blocking purposes vs lined up as a slot guy.
3. Garret Graham (vs Ind) – Coming off the buy maybe the Texans can get something going with Case Keenum at QB but Graham is a risky start regardless. Indy matches up well vs opposing TE’s and expect Keenum to lean on Andre Johnson.