Twas the day before playoffs as I eye my roster
Can I win the first week against Arian Foster?
My line-up set with the finishing touch
I’m pumped about Forsett, but Mason not so much
My kicker from the Eagles knows how to score
And I pray for Cutler to give me one more
As for Bryant and Graham I don’t have to worry
And Gordon and Sanders rack up points in a fury
I hope the Ram’s defense can just hold their ground
If it works like I planned it, I’m podium bound!
Johnny Manziel, Cleveland Browns- It looks like the Johnny Football era is on hold but that doesn’t mean we should ignore the fact that the Browns didn’t hesitate to put Manziel in the game. His first series wasn’t anything to write home about but he did complete a long pass to Josh Gordon and ran for a TD. If this is a sign of things to come Hoyer will be working on a short leash. If he doesn’t get it done this week look for Manziel to get the nod. Don’t start him now but keep an eye on this kid. He has a chip on his shoulder and wants to prove to the world that he is as good as he thinks he is.
Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens- I should start giving out awards for guys who have been on this list the most this season. Flacco always seems to be forgotten year after year. Maybe they should rank these guys by their contracts, and then Flacco would be a top 5 QB. Look, Flacco has been ok all season long and most of us don’t need him since bye weeks are over. However the Ravens are still in the hunt for a playoff spot which means Flacco isn’t going to be taking a break anytime soon. Those of you starting Rodgers, Brady, Manning, or any other quarterbacks on 1st place teams may start wanting to look for guys we know are going to play. Ravens are a looking pretty good now that the running back situation is finalized. Flacco is a safe stash for the end of the season.
Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers– It was nice to see Martin get 19 carries, the most he has seen this season. He also finally found the endzone. I am not preaching the second coming of this once rookie phenom but like I have said from week #1. “You can’t score unless you have the ball.” Tampa is a mess and they are going against one of the toughest run defenses in the league. However there was a time when Martin was a feared back, maybe there is a little left in the tank. As always this is a pretty shallow category so whoever you start is going to be a big “what if.” What if it’s Martin?
Chris Johnson, New York Jets- Raise your hand if you have been burned by Johnson before. This guys has made a career out of disappointing real coaches and fantasy coaches a like. Lighting speed that can’t seem to actually get going. Last week was the first time he looked like a running back in quite a while totally more than 100 yards for the 1st time this season. He did it on 17 carries which comes out to 6 yards per carry. The Vikings have been giving up running yards like they are going out of style so we are going to find out real quick if Johnson is back to fantasy consideration. If you are in serious need of a back you might want to go with name you know.
Daniel Herron, Indianapolis Colts- In all honesty this is the guy that should be on the top of this list since he is the only viable starting option available. Herron averaged 10 more yards per carry than his counterpart, starter Trent Richardson. Amazingly he still over 50% available as teams are not quite sold on him. However, we all know by now that Richardson is not the answer so it’s time to get on Herron’s band wagon because its leaving. How do you skip over any offensive starter when the QB is Andrew Luck?
Harry Douglas, Atlanta Falcons– So Mike Smith says that Roddy White is going to play, I guess we will wait and see. At one time he was the Falcons iron man not missing any game for years until injuries have slowed him down as of late. Douglas stepped in last week and looked like a top receiver catching everything that Ryan threw his way. Sure White is going to take away some of his target but that doesn’t mean Douglas isn’t a threat for yards or touch downs. Being Matty Ice’s 3rd target really isn’t a bad spot to be in.
Stedman Bailey, St. Louis Rams- I am not sure what it is with the Ram receivers this year but they all seem to end up on this list at one time or another. Stedman is the new hot pick coming out of St. Louis. He has totaled almost 200 yards and 15 catches over the last 2 weeks heading into a game against Washington. If I needed a receiver this week I would be looking at Bailey.
Kenny Stills, New Orleans Saints- Outside of Graham it has been hard to pinpoint the next man up on the Saints receiving core. Stills has shown over the last couple of weeks that maybe he is the next guy in line to grab that brass ring. The offense is going to have to produce because the defense is not and they are in a dog fight with the Falcons for 1st place in the NFC South. They go against a terrible Panthers team and the Falcons soft defense on the horizon. I am thinking Stills is a pretty safe bet the next couple of weeks.
Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers– Miller continues to pop up on the fantasy radar and I don’t think he is going away this time. I think earlier this season I called him ole reliable because that is what he is. As the Steelers continue to fight for the post season they are going to need all the help they can get and Big Ben is still throwing like a monster. If Reed is taken, Miller is your next option.
Dion Sims, Miami Dolphins– Talk about a guy no one has heard of, Sims jumps into the fantasy spotlight after filling in for the injured Charles Clay. He has 8 catches for 80 yards in 2 games so it’s just matter of time before one of those end up in the end-zone. If you are all the way down here this week looking for points you would be lucky to grab the 4 or 5 that Sims will produce.