Week 2: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Check out these start/sit recommendations for week 2. Keep in mind that all the players listed in this section will be “bubble guys”, or players on the cusp. We realize you don’t need any help deciding whether or not to start Adrian Peterson or Calvin Johnson, but Marlon Brown, or Carson Palmer might be a different story.

Start ‘Em

Quarterback
  • Michael Vick (vs SD): Well, it seems as if Vick has gotten a handle on Chip Kelly’s “blur offense”. Owners should feel comfortable riding Vick until he gets injured, or starts turning the ball over in scores like we saw last season. For now, he should be a good play in the Eagles home opener against a San Diego defense that was just lit up by Matt Schaub.
  • Cam Newton (@ Buf): Don’t let his sub-Geno Smith-standard performance last week throw you off. Cam is still a premier fantasy QB when not matching up against the Seahawks defense. While the Bill’s seemingly reinvigorated front seven managed to give Tom Brady some problems last week, Cam should be able to post solid numbers in week 2.
  • Terrelle Pryor (vs Jax): Pryor may not be a godsend for the Raiders, but he gives them a chance to win games thanks to his elusiveness out of the pocket. Pryor has posted 20+ points in both of his career starts thanks to his rushing abilities, and he won’t get a much better matchup than this. Owners should be able to start Pryor with confidence this week in 2 QB leagues, and deeper formats. (more…)

Week 17: The Championship – Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

The Championship. Let’s cut through the flak. Here it is.

Start ‘Em

Tony Romo: The (Fantasy) Playoff Monster

Quarterback
  • Tony Romo (@ Was): The guy is averaging over 350 yards per game, and has 13 TD passes over the span of his last five games. He’s on absolute fire, and the Skins are the 30th ranked team against the pass. Take this one and say thank you.
  • Michael Vick (@ NYG): Well, Nick Foles is down with a broken hand. Vick is the starter, and he faces a nothing-special Giants pass defense who was just lit up by Joe Flacco and co. In what could be a do or die game for Vick’s career, I’d expect him to show up big. Definitely offers an interesting play.

Runningback

  • Shonn Greene (@ Buf): The Buffalo run defense is absolutely atrocious, and Greene is coming off of a hot, two-TD performance. With a much tastier match up this week, and his goal line poacher, Bilal Powell, banged up, Greene should be in for solid points in week 17.
  • LeSean McCoy (@ NYG): Didn’t do a whole lot last week, but keep in mind that was against Washington’s top five run defense. He has a far better matchup this week, and with the Giants solid front line, he could be seeing alot of dump off passes.

Wide Receiver

  • Danario Alexander (vs Oak): Despite getting shut out against Carolina two weeks ago, Alexander rebounded nicely last week. With a very attractive matchup this week, and a Chargers coaching staff who is in dire need of a win, Alexander should figure heavily in this game.
  • Antonio Brown (vs Cle): Don’t expect another Pittsburgh loss at home this time. This game is for pride, and nothing more, but with a struggling running game, and Mike Wallace looking to be a game time decision, don’t be suprised to see double digit targets for Brown.

Tight End

  • Kyle Rudolph (vs GB): The Vikings are hot, and with three touchdowns in his past five games, so is Rudolph. He put up solid numbers, including a TD in his first matchup against the Packers, and if you watch the Vikings, Christian Ponder rarely looks in anyone else’s direction around the goal line.

Team Defense

  • San Diego (vs Oak): The Raiders offense is horrible, plain and simple. To make matters worse, they just lost their starting QB. This one should easily be good for solid points.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Jay Cutler (@ Det): Has been struggling recently, averaging less than 200 yards over his past five games. He has only six TD passes, and four INT’s over that same stretch. There are better options out there.
  • Matthew Stafford (vs Chi): The Lions typically struggle against the Bears, and have looked all around poor as of late. Stafford has been throwing gobbles of interceptions, without many TD’s to justify it. Similarly, with the matchup against a top Bears defense, look elsewhere this week.

Runningback

  • Steven Jackson (@ Sea): The Seahawks have only allowed one rushing touchdown over their past four, and have beaten their past three opponents by over 100 combined points. Don’t expect much out of Jackson in this one.
  • Michael Turner (vs TB): He will be losing carries to Jacquizz Rodgers, and facing the leagues top rushing defense.
  • Beanie Wells (@ SF): One of the league’s worst offenses, against one of the league’s best defenses. Beanie should continue to disappoint here.

Wide Receiver

  • Rams Receivers (@ Sea): The Seahawks defense is absolutely incredible. They have allowed 14 touchdowns through the air in 15 games so far. Chances are, the Rams won’t be the ones to hit them for the outlier this week.
  • Larry Fitzgerald (@ SF): They still can’t get him the ball.

Tight End

  • Owen Daniels (@ Ind): Daniels is averaging 35 yards per game over the past four weeks, and hasn’t caught a touchdown pass over that span. Too risky to start.
  • Rob Gronkowski (vs Mia): If the Ravens lose early, there will be little reason for the Patriots to risk him, or even Brady for that matter.

Team Defense

  • Arizona (@ SF): It’s hard for a defense to keep points off the board when your offense is that bad. The average field position of San Francisco’s possessions in this game could be downright comical.

 

Week 16: Fantasy Playoffs – The Semi-Finals

Welcome to the semi-finals! With only two weeks to go, chances are you are still in contention for the championship if you are reading this. If not, a tip of the hat to those few, but proud and dedicated consolation bracketeers. If you, like myself, were unfortunate enough get knocked out behind a complete dud performance from one of the projected studs from last week (see Cruz, Charles, Freeman, etc…), more sympathy to you. Here come the recommendations for week 16.

Start ‘Em

Quarterback
  • Cam Newton (vs Oak): This one is a no-brainer. Oakland continues to struggle tremendously against the pass, and Newton has been on fire lately, with 13 TD’s (three from the ground) and zero interceptions in his last five games.
  • Tony Romo (vs NO): I wouldn’t be scared off by the hurting that the Saints put on Josh Freeman and Tampa last weekend. The Saints are much better in the Superdome, and when you combine the facts that this game is in Dallas and the Saints are still one of the worst teams in the league against the pass, Romo is a solid play.

Runningback

  • Reggie Bush (vs Buf): Its a pretty safe bet that whatever team’s runningback that  who ever is playing the Bills is going to get the nod in this section. The Bills have allowed 22 rushing touchdowns, and allow an average of over 130 ground yards per game. Don’t forget Reggie Bush is no slouch..
  • DeAngelo Williams (vs Oak): Jonathan Stewart’s unfortunate injury was a godsend for DeAngelo Williams owners, and he gotten 256 total yards and two TD’s in the past two weeks. Against a porous Oakland defense, continue to ride him while he’s hot.

Wide Receiver

  • Eric Decker (vs Cle): With Joe Haden in the face of Demaryius Thomas all game, Manning should continue his recent trend of throwing tons of balls to Eric Decker, who has gotten 20 targets in the past two weeks.
  • Reggie Wayne (@ KC): Don’t be offput by his dud against the Texans. With a much better matchup against a struggling KC defense this week, the Colts, and Reggie Wayne should bounce back nicely.
  • Danny Amendola (vs TB): The Bucs are still horrendous against the pass, and Bradford loves throwing to Amendola. In deeper leagues, Brandon Gibson is a very solid play as well, having 12 catches for 176 yards, and one TD in the past two weeks.

Tight End

  • Greg Olsen (vs Oak): As stated, the Panthers have been hot lately, and the reason why Olsen is such a good play is that, unlike guys like Brandon Myers or Kyle Rudolph, he rarely puts up gooseeggs. With a great matchup against the Raiders, Olsen has a great shot to put up 10+ points, but will still get you something even if he doesn’t blow up.

Team Defense

  • Chicago (@ Ari): The fact the Cardinals put up 30+ points last week does not mean their offense is good, or even decent. It is still horrible, in fact. This one could get ugly for Ryan Lindley and co.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Joe Flacco (vs NYG): Flacco has been good, and frequently great at home, but horrendous on the road for the majority of the season. Having said that, he has been shaky lately, and if you have other options, it is hard to gamble on his inconsistency this late in the fantasy playoffs.
  • Philip Rivers (@ NYJ): Rivers is coming off an absolute horrid performance (121 yards, 1 TD, 2 fumbles, >10 points). This week, he has an equally bad matchup against the second ranked Jets pass defense, and remains a bad start.

Runningback

  • Marshawn Lynch (vs SF): I think this could be a really good game. The Seahawks are a very tough team, especially at home, but the 49′ers defense is still incredibly intimidating to play a starting runningback against, even if it’s Marshawn.
  • Bryce Brown (vs Was): The Skins are pushing for the playoffs, and have one of the league’s top rushing defenses. Unfortunately the waiver wire savior of the past several weeks does not look to be in line for a big game this week.

Wide Receiver

  • Danario Alexander (@ NYJ): For the same reasons I don’t like Rivers. He runs the risk of putting up another goose egg, especially with Cromartie on him.
  • Josh Gordon (@ Den): Despite having put together a more than solid rookie season, he now faces the daunting task of opposing Champ Bailey at Mile High Stadium. Wouldn’t expect a whole lot out of him this week.

Tight End

  • Vernon Davis (@ Sea): Davis has had less than 50 yards combined in his last four games, and didn’t manage to record a single catch in the ‘Niners first meeting with Seattle. He is not a safe start this week by any means.

Team Defense

  • Arizona (vs Chi): Wouldn’t buy into their dismantling of Matthew Stafford 100%. They are still a horrible team, and are no longer fresh off of an embarrassing 58-0 loss. The realization has set back in that they are in a downward spiral with an awful quarterback. Look elsewhere this week.

 

Week 15: Fantasy Playoffs – Start ‘Em/Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

As a waiver wire QB, Russell Wilson could turn a lot of heads with some favorable fantasy playoff matchups

Quarterback
  • Josh Freeman (@ NO): Freeman hasn’t quite kept up with the red hot numbers he was posting back in midseason, but he has still managed to put up 20 passing TD’s to only four interceptions in his past nine games. To make things even better, Freeman had a career day against New Orleans in their matchup earlier this season, posting 420 yards, three TD’s, and zero int’s.
  • Russell Wilson (@ Buf): 10 TD’s and 1 interception in his last five games. Wilson has been hot, but keep in mind he is sure to transform into “game manager” in situations such as last week’s 58-0 blowout of Arizona. If Buffalo is able to compete in this game, Wilson will deliver.
  • Brandon Weeden (vs Was): Washington continues to struggle tremendously against the pass, as they have allowed seven passing touchdowns in the past three weeks.

Runningback

  • Marshawn Lynch (@ Buf): Despite how bad the Cardinals may be, Lynch is catching fire at the perfect time for his fantasy owners. The guy has seven touchdowns and five 100+ yard’ers in his last SEVEN games. He is absolutely killing it. Coming in against the third worst rushing defense in the league – Lynch should be in for a huge day.
  • David Wilson (@ Atl): This is a big one where you will have to monitor the injury to Ahmad Bradshaw’s knee. Wilson absolutely exploded last week against the Saints for over 300 all purpose yards, and three TD’s. This week’s matchup against the porous Atlanta run defense is almost just as tasty, and if Bradshaw is ruled out, Wilson will be the only serviceable back available.
  • Reggie Bush (vs Jax): I thought this stat was a typo when I read it. Jacksonville has allowed FIVE running backs to score 10+ points in the past THREE games. Absolutely outrageous.

Wide Receiver

  • Josh Gordon (vs Was): Gordon is finally coming back into the form that saw him rise to prominence back in midseason. In his past two games he has 14 catches for 202 yards, and a TD. This week, they face the Redskins horrid pass defense, and as Weeden’s favorite target, Gordon’s hot streak looks to continue.
  • Mike Wallace (@ Dal): Mendenhall is out, and thankfully for Mike Wallace owners, Big Ben is back in action. Wallace managed to put up more yardage (excluding the two TD’s he tacked on, as well) last week than in the previous four games combined while working with Leftwich/Batch. All signs point to this continuing against the Cowboys, who have allowed seven passing TD’s in the past five weeks.
  • Danario Alexander (vs Car): Continues to be the most trusted WR in the San Diego offense, and has gotten a TD or 100+ yards in four of the past five games. While not the best matchup against Carolina, they have still allowed three TD’s to WR’s over the past two weeks.

Tight End

  • Brandon Myers (vs KC): Coming off of his monster game two weeks ago, he was unfortunately resigned to blocking Denver’s incredible front seven last week, and only managed one catch for seven yards. That should change this week, against a far easier opponent in the Chiefs.
  • Dennis Pitta (vs Den): Has a touchdown in every game since week 10 against teams that aren’t Pittsburgh. This one is slightly a gamble however, as it remains to be seen how the new offensive coordinator will work Pitta into the system. However, it’s clear Flacco plays better at home, and trusts Pitta, especially in the redzone.

Team Defense

  • Detroit (@ Ari): The Cardinals are an absolute mess. This pick has nothing to do with the Lions, or their defense.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Nick Foles (vs Cin): Don’t buy in too heavily to the monster numbers Foles put up against Tampa, and their atrocious pass defense last week. The Bengals present a much tougher challenge for the rookie, and it is far too much of a gamble at this point in your fantasy season. Go with a better option
  • Jay Cutler (vs GB): Struggles tremendously against the Packers. In his past five matchups against Green Bay, averages just over 200 yards with six TD’s and 11 interceptions. Cutler’s neck is still shaky, the Bears are spiralling, and Green Bay knows how to shut down Brandon Marshall, the only guy Cutler likes to throw to.

Runningback

  • Michael Turner (vs NYG): He has only two 100+ yard games on the season, and would be an absolute bust if the Falcons didn’t give him goal line work. He hasn’t gotten 20+ carries since week 9, and the Giants have allowed one rushing TD at home in their past six games. Stay away.
  • Beanie Wells (vs Det): Stay away from the Cardinals. Beanie Wells, like Michael Turner, will provide ZERO value for your team if he fails to score, which is something the Cardinals clearly have tremendous difficulty doing.
  • Vick Ballard (@ Hou): Houston is going to rebound strong at home after being embarrassed in Foxborough. Even with his goal line poachers injured, Ballard will be in for a long day against the Texans.

Wide Receiver

  • Larry Fitzgerald (vs Det): Continues to ride this list while the Cardinals lack a serviceable QB.
  • Pierre Garcon (@ Cle): Regardless of what ends up happening with RG3, it’s clear that he won’t be 100%, won’t be running the ball often, and will lose alot of the escapability that makes him such a threat. Additionally, Garcon will be matched up against Joe Haden, who has shut down far better receivers such as Mike Wallace and Reggie Wayne already.
  • Jeremy Maclin (vs Cin): For the same reasons I don’t like Nick Foles. He will struggle to get Maclin the ball this week.

Tight End

  • Jason Witten (vs Pit): Has only one touchdown on the season, and the Steelers are the best team in the league at covering the tight end.
  • Jermichael Finley (@ Chi): One of those hit or miss players who tends to miss more often than not.

Team Defense

  • San Francisco (@ NE): This is the classic question of what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. Unfortunately, regardless of how great this game might be watch, I wouldn’t want to gamble my fantasy playoffs on the outcome.
  • Pittsburgh (@ Dal): I have paid the price before when betting against Pittsburgh, but with even more injuries piling up on the defense and DeMarco Murray back in action, I think this will be a close.

 

Week 14: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em – Hot Pickups – and Other Advice for the Playoffs

There’s no going wrong with either top rookie QB

If you’re still reading this, it most likely means you are one of the playoff contenders in your league. Congratulations, yet very few leagues involving payouts will offer one for simply making the playoffs alone. You’re going to need to keep making moves in order to stay on top, as the fantasy playoffs can be a cruel mistress. With the NFL playoff picture shaping up the way it has, there is a very likely chance that owners whose teams have been driven by studs like Arian Foster, or Tom Brady will have to ready replacements for these stars, as they almost inevitably will be rested for the playoffs. Here we go.

Start ‘Em

Quarterback
  • Josh Freeman (vs Phi): The Eagles season is over; they have nothing left to play for. Their pass defense ranks 31st in the league, and they have not limited an offense to less than 28 points since former defensive coordinator, Juan Castillo, was fired.  Similarly, they recently cut their best pass rusher, and to put it simply, they can’t generate pressure, sacks, or turnovers. In the meantime, the Bucs have been pushing for the playoffs, and Josh Freeman has multiple touchdown passes in seven of his last eight games. In the words of Dave Hester, YUUUUUUUUUP!
  • Robert Griffin III (vs Bal): The readdition of Ray Lewis is not going to make up for a  hobbled Terrell Suggs. After Suggs tore his bicep against Pittsburgh this past weekend, the Ravens were incapable of generating any sort of pass rush whatsoever on Charlie Batch, who is obviously slow as hell. RG3 and the playoff surging Redskins should have plenty of time to work this injury crippled defense on Sunday.
  • Andrew Luck (vs Ten): Luck has looked downright incredible this season, and has only gotten better. The Colts are obviously looking to pass first in the redzone, offering up lots of scoring opportunities for the rookie. Similarly, the Titans’ pass defense ranks in the bottom third of the league, and Luck should have no problem putting up top numbers again this week.

Runningback

  • Trent Richardson (vs KC): Has gotten 20+ carries in each of his last five games, and continues to produce. He has emerged as one of the few true “workhorses” left in the league, and this shows no signs of letting up against a poor KC team.
  • Doug Martin (vs Phi): Its tough not to bet against the Eagles right now. Especially with a new defensive line coach shaking things up. With the way the Juan Castillo replacement went for Philly’s defense, I’d consider Doug Martin a must start this week.
  • Ahmad Bradshaw (vs NO): There are few things better in fantasy football than when your runningback’s goal line TD poacher goes down with injury. This should be a high scoring game, and the backfield is Bradshaw’s. The only competition is going to come from the shaky David Wilson, who has had a rocky first season in the NFL, and doesn’t offer enough physicality to take goal line work away from Bradshaw. The Saints present a highly favorable matchup for the Giants’ ground attack this week.
  • Steven Jackson (@ Buf): Disappointed against the 49′ers, but not much else is to be expected there. Despite this, the aging veteran has managed to put up over 100 yards in two of his last four games, and should be in for solid points here against a very mediocre Buffalo defense. The cold weather up in Buffalo should only get him more touches.

Wide Receiver

  • Josh Gordon (vs KC): I’ve been big on him all season, and those who trusted me last week on this pick learned why. Gordon has all the tools to succeed in this league, and has clearly cemented himself as the Browns #1, and Weeden’s favorite target. Continue to roll with him heading into another favorable matchup against KC this week.
  • TY Hilton (vs Ten): Hopefully you picked him up last week, as Hilton continues to impress. He on a playoff pushing team with a guy who is quickly making himself known as an “elite” QB. This week, he has another favorable matchup against a mediocre pass defense, and is riding a streak that has seen him put up three 100+ yard games, and four TD’s in his past five games.
  • Greg Jennings (vs Det): The Lions have given up 30+ points in three of their last four games. We all know what Greg Jennings is capable of, and he should be back in full force this weekend.

Tight End

  • Bradon Myers (@ Den) – Another guy I’ve been harping on for a few weeks now. Posted absolutely insane numbers last weekend for a tight end, totaling 14 catches for 130 yards and a TD. Similarly, despite Denver’s solid defense, they are  right behind the Patriots when looking at points given up to opposing TE’s. Additionally, he should have plenty of time to rack up garbage points when the Raiders find themselves in a hole midway through this game.
  • Owen Daniels (@ NE) – Despite improvements on the run defense, the Patriots are one of the worst teams in the league against the tight end. The Texans are going to have to pass in this game if they want to win, and Daniels is arguably Schaub’s favorite target in the redzone.
Team Defense
  • Seattle (vs Ari): The Cardinals can’t do anything on offense. Their offense line is bad. Ryan Lindley looks worse.
  • San Francisco (vs Mia): Expect the 49′ers to make quick work of Tannehill and co. this weekend.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Phillip Rivers (@ Pit): Rivers has been shaky as of late, and the Steelers are offering up the best pass defense in the league, allowing under 175 yards per game. With Polamalu now back in action, there is no way they’re regressing.
  • Carson Palmer (vs Den): The only chance the Raiders, and Palmer have of putting up solid fantasy points is if they are chasing a blowout, racking up garbage points in the second half. Granted, situations like those are where Palmer has made his keep this year, but Oakland failed to even do that the first time these two teams met, getting blown out 37-6

Runningback

  • Reggie Bush (@ SF): This is virtually a no-brainer.
  • Ryan Mathews (@ Pit): The Steelers defense is still incredible, and Ryan Mathews is still a shaky fantasy back. In spite of the Chargers backfield becoming much less crowded in the offseason, with the departure of Tolbert, Mathews has only managed to score ONCE since coming back from injury. Hardly a solid return on what had to have been a high pick on draft day.

Wide Receiver

  • Larry Fitzgerald (@ Sea): I will not be starting, or drafting Larry Fitzgerald at any point when Ryan Lindley is quarterbacking for him. Five catches for 65 yards in three weeks? No thanks. Don’t forget the tough matchup at Seattle…
  • Dwayne Bowe (@ Cle): I don’t like Brady Quinn either. However, I do love Joe Haden, the DB that will almost certainly be covering Bowe this weekend. Only three TD’s on the year for Bowe, and ZERO were thrown by Quinn, indicating that they have not yet developed a solid working relationship.
  • Denarius Moore (vs Den): Champ Bailey continues to defy age, and will most likely be plastered on Moore all day. It’s worth noting that Moore had some behavioral issues in the loss to Cleveland last week, but regardless of the effect that has on him, I don’t like him as anything besides a desperate man’s flex play this week.

Tight End

  • Dennis Pitta (@ Was): Has been to inconsistent to be a solid play this year, and that is without even delving into the aspect of Joe Flacco’s apparent collapse whenever the Ravens play away from home.
  • Antonio Gates (@ Pit): For the same reasons I wouldn’t start Rivers this week.

Team Defense

  • Baltimore (@ Was): With Suggs having a torn bicep, Ray Lewis not 100% (IF he returns), and Ladarius Webb out for the season, Baltimore’s defense is truly crippled by injury. RG3 shouldn’t have much of a problem here, as the Ravens could get nothing resembling a pass rush against Charlie Batch last weekend. With the way RG3 handled the Giants’ explosive pass rush, there is a good chance he could downright embarrass the Baltimore front seven this week.
  • New York Giants (@ NO): It’s still tough to bet against Drew Brees in the Superdome.

Pickups to Bolster your Playoff Squad

Brandon Lloyd (WR – NE): I’m still kicking myself over how poorly Lloyd’s season has turned out (and possibly holding unjustifiable hope that he can turn it around.) Despite this, if you have roster space, and Lloyd is available on the cheap/waiver wire, I wouldn’t be hesitant about taking a shot on him at this point.  Julian Edelman had been emerging as one of Brady’s surer targets right in time for him to hit the season long IR. The mentality behind this move is that the Patriots simply can’t throw to Wes Welker every down. Could end up (remaining) a bust, but the guy should be available for free, or dirt cheap in leagues where roster moves can still be made.

Justin Forsett (RB – Hou): Anyone who watched the Houston game last week could tell that they are already starting to take a cautious approach with their star RB. Expect Foster’s carries and points to decline steady the closer it gets to the playoffs, and the further the Texans build their divisional lead.

Jonathan Dwyer (RB – Pit): Dwyer has officially been named the starter for the remainder of the season, and should put up solid points throughout. In the three games where Dwyer has been the official “starter” he has put up 278 yards and a TD. With Big Ben returning to take pressure off the run, that should only improve.

Week 13: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

T.Rich in for a big day against struggling Raiders

Quarterback

  • Tony Romo (vs Phi): The Eagles are in complete disarray. Since firing former defensive coordinator, Juan Castillo, their defense slipped from bad to worse – allowing 28 or more points in the past five games. They are not generating sacks or turnovers. Meanwhile, Romo has 963 yards, six touchdowns, and only two interceptions in his last three games. Continue to roll with Tony against this struggling team.
  • Colin Kaepernick (@ StL): In two very hard audition games (Chicago and New Orleans) Kaepernick put up close to 40 total points. The offense has unearthed new potential with him at the helm, and he is coming into a St. Louis matchup where he previously was 11 for 17 for 117 yards in the air, and 8 carries for 66 yards and one TD rushing – while only playing part of the game. In full swing with full practice, Kaep is a pretty solid bet to put up 20+ this week. (more…)

Week 12: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Start ‘em, sit ‘em for turkey day, and the rest of the weekend

Quarterback

  • Andy Dalton (vs Oak) – The Raiders have been getting absolutely torched lately, allowing six TD’s to opposing receivers over the past three weeks.  They show no signs of improving against one of the top QB-WR (AJ Green) tandems in the league, who have connected for at least one  TD in each of the past nine games.
  • Tony Romo (vs Was) – The Cowboys normally play very tough on Thanksgiving, as does Romo, with 14 TD’s to only four interceptions while playing on Turkey day. To add onto his appeal, Felix Jones is banged up, DeMarco Murray isn’t returning this week, and Dez Bryant is finally hitting stride. Combine the fact that the Redskins have given up the third most points to opposing QB’s (they will be without the injured London Fletcher and Brandon Meriweather), and this makes for one hell of an attractive play.

Runningback

  • Jalen Parmele (vs Ten) – After the Jaguars pulled the plug on Rashad Jennings, Parmele came in and put up a very respectable 80 yards on 24 carries against a tough Houston defense. With a much more favorable matchup this week, and Henne coming off a hot performance which will hopefully take pressure off the run, Parmele should be in for a nice day.
  • BenJarvus Green-Ellis (vs Oak) – Coming off of his best game of the season, posting 25 carries for 101 yards and a TD, BJGE should continue to roll against this horrid Oakland defense. The second half could very well be all his, if Cinci jumps out to an early lead like many expect.

Wide Receiver

  • AJ Green (vs Oak) – Like you were really thinking of benching him, anyways. His stats speak for themselves, and many are predicting him to go off for a 200+ yard performance.
  • Michael Crabtree (@ NO) – 13 catches, 173 yards, and four TD’s over his past three games which include matchups against the Cardinals and Bears. Coming into a far easier matchup against New Orleans, continue to roll with Crabtree.
  • Denarius Moore (@ Cin) – Despite his absolutely horrid performance against the Saints last week, I’d bet on Moore to rebound in a game where Carson Palmer will be pissed off due to his tribulations with the Bengals front office. Similarly, the Raiders should have plenty of time to put up garbage points in this game.
  • Dez Bryant (vs Was) – Targeted 15 times against Cleveland, putting up 12 catches for 145 and a TD. Against one of the worst (and injured) pass defenses in the league, Romo’s history of performing well on Thanksgiving, and Dallas’s lack of a real runningback, Dez is a must start.

Tight End

  • Brandon Myers (@ Cin) – 19 catches, 171 yards, and three TD’s over his past three games. Continue to roll with Myers, who has been an absolute gem off the waiver wire, against the Bengals. The Raiders are very likely to find themselves in an early hole here, and that spells alot of second half garbage points.
  • Jermaine Gresham (vs Oak) – For the same reasons I like AJ Green.

Team Defense

  • Minnesota (@ Chi) – Despite what might happen on the other side of the ball, I simply think Jason Campbell is garbage.
  • Seattle (@ Mia) – Seattle is virtually a must-start every week, especially with a matchup like the Dolphins.
  • St. Louis (@ Ari) – The Rams defense has been the one bright spot this season, and against a struggling Cardinals team, they make for a very solid, but sneaky play this week.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Joe Flacco (@ SD) – The Chargers defense is no pushover, and Flacco continues to disappoint on the road, yet to put up over 15 points while playing away.
  • Brandon Weeden (vs Pit) – The Steelers have only been hit for 200+ passing yards one time since their bye in week 5. Weeden is almost certainly not going to be the second.

Runningback

  • Steven Jackson (@ Ari) – The Cardinals are allowing the third fewest points to opposing backs, and Steven Jackson is already a hit-or miss player. Expect a miss here.
  • Shonn Greene (vs NE) – The Jets most likely won’t be in a position to run the ball very much this game. Regardless, the Patriots are extremely tough on the run, and Bilal Powell managed to poach two TD’s off of Greene last week.

Wide Receiver

  • Brandon Lloyd (@ NYJ) – Regardless of how much I liked Lloyd before the season, he has been too enigmatic to be a reliable start with only three TD’s and one 100+ yard game on the season. Similarly, it appears he is losing playing time to Julian Edelman. I don’t expect the absence of Gronk to boost his standing too much.
  • Eagles Receivers (vs Car) – The Eagles are imploding, and Nick Foles is clearly not the answer, as he struggled against the Redskins, who have one of the worst pass defenses in the league.

Tight End

  • Jermichael Finley (@ Det) – We kept hearing how him and Aaron Rodgers met up to hash out discrepancies, which may be true, as he is coming off of his first touchdown since week 1. Despite this, the Giants have only allowed one score to a TE this year, and I still wouldn’t trust Finley with his risk of putting up a goose egg.
  • Heath Miller (@ Cle) – With no Big Ben, Miller’s production has fallen of the face of a cliff, and that shows no signs of improving under Charlie Batch.

Team Defense

  • Atlanta (vs TB) – The Bucs, and Josh Freeman specifically, have been on a roll lately. Atlanta is vulnerable to the pass. There are better/surer plays this week.

Week 11: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Quarterback

Despite the Raiders struggles, Palmer has been a solid fantasy QB

  • Josh Freeman (vs Car) – Freeman has been on an absolute tear since the Bucs bye week. In those five games, he has put up 1467 yards, 13 touchdowns, and only one interception. Despite the fact that Carolina has been playing tough defense recently, continue to roll with Freeman as the Bucs make a playoff push.
  • Carson Palmer (vs NO) – On the opposite end of the spectrum, Palmer has been a great fantasy QB regardless of the Raiders’ woes as a team. He is averaging over 300 yards per game, and that should only increase without McFadden in the picture. Tack on the fact that over half the QB’s the Saints have faced have thrown for 300+ yards and 3+ TD’s, and Palmer should be a very nice week 11 play. (more…)

Week 10: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Freeman and Bucs looking Elite

Quarterback

  • Josh Freeman (vs SD) – Freeman has thrown for 1257 yards and 11 touchdowns while only throwing one pick in the last four weeks. Ride him while he, Doug Martin (who isn’t included in this list because he’s a guaranteed start) and the rest of the Tampa offense is hot, as the Chargers show no signs of being the team to slow them down this week.
  • Joe Flacco (vs Oak) – Flacco has consistently been a stud at home, and a bust on the road this season. Oakland likes to turn games into shootouts, and Flacco should bounce back from a disappointing-for-his-fantasy-owners road trip against a mediocre Oakland defense.
  • Andrew Luck (@ Jax) – Similar to Flacco, Luck’s numbers at home have been noticably better. Despite this, Jacksonville is horrible, and the Colts are surging. I’d expect this to be the best road game of the rookie’s career to date. (more…)

Week 8: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Banged up backfield and a favorable matchup means solid points for Big Ben in week 8.

Quarterback

  • Ben Roethlisberger (vs Was) – The Redskins have tremendous difficulty against the pass, allowing over 300 yards to every quarterback that has faced them, with the exception of Josh Freeman – who totaled 299. With a banged up backfield, the Steelers should be relying on Ben and the passing game here.
  • Brandon Weeden (vs SD) – Got a starter on bye or an unfavorable matchup in a two-QB league? Weeden has been consistently producing, and consistently improving as well. With Trent Richardson’s ribs still banged up, the Browns are going to need to throw the ball in this game, and the Chargers present a favorable matchup. (more…)