How are we looking fantasy owners? Where is your team standing after 4 weeks? Are you a Detroit Lion or an Indianapolis Colt? Well it is still early yet, so get reading and let’s go!
With this being the 5th week of the NFL season it is now time for bye weeks, which always tests fantasy owners. You may have thought in August that it was a better idea to get the top defense in the 7th round, but some thought of getting good bench players. Here is where that will shine through.
No worries for the true fantasy player, plenty of players are in the vault, or maybe even in the waiver wires as we will check later. So let’s get down to business as I bring you this week’s version of Start ‘Em/ Sit ‘Em. Good luck in week 5.
Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. Packers: I don’t like many QBs to shine against the Packers, but when Matt Ryan is at home, all bets are on! Yes, we know he has struggled this season, but in his last home game he was sizzling, tossing 4 TD passes. The Pack always makes it a shootout, so no reason why Ryan won’t get his here.
Kevin Kolb, Cardinals at Vikings: Not that I am the biggest Kolb fan, but the Vikings are not really stopping anyone lately. Also it’s the return of Larry Fitzgerald to his childhood home, where he was a ball boy for the Vikes. This should be a good one for Kolb.
Matt Hasselbeck, Titans at Steelers: Matt has come back to life this year and has been real good, but something about the Steelers at home, with or without James Harrison. Titans have looked good this year, but this is way too tough of a road game to trust them here.
Matt Schaub, Texans vs. Raiders: It’s a simple combination of no Andre Johnson, and being able to play Arian Foster against a Raider run defense that isn’t all that special. Shaub may not have to be too great to get the Texans out of this one, so I can’t expect much.
Jay Cutler, Bears at Lions: I don’t know why, but I thought the Bears may have had a good chance of pulling off the upset this week, then I looked further. Cutler does tend to struggle against teams that bring heat up the middle, and the Lions defense has big bodies up front. The Bears are very average right now on many levels, and the Lions should be pumped up for Monday night.
Ryan Mathews, Chargers at Broncos: He just keeps getting better each week, and the Broncos do very little impressive on defense. With Mathews and back mate Mike Tolbert playing so good it has taken the heat off of Philip Rivers to do it all, and it is helping.
Arian Foster, Texans vs. Raiders: I know, “duh”! Foster proved that when healthy he is the best all around back in this league, don’t sleep on it.
Fred Jackson, Bills vs. Eagles: Until the Eagles show me they can stop any RB at all, I will continue to advise you to use them. Jackson has been a big part of the Bills hot start, and win or lose this week, he should still get his.
Frank Gore, 49ers vs. Buccaneers: It may be a long shot, but Gore still is not 100 percent, and the Bucs are playing pretty good defense. They may have to do more passing in this one, so I don’t feel so good about Gore.
Rashard Mendenhall, Steelers vs. Titans: In what should be a decent defensive battle, we don’t like Mendenhall at all. He may be injured, and last week Isaac Redman actually looked better, which may help him steal some carries from the slowed Mendenhall.
Beanie Wells, Cardinals at Vikings: The Vikes still play a decent run defense, plus they are home, which has to mean something, right?
Wide Receiver/ Tight End
Steve Smith, Panthers vs. Saints: The word is out, Steve Smith is back. Not only is he back, but it seems the tougher the team out there the better he plays. This match will be filled with all out air bombs, and Smith will get tons of chances. If QB Cam Newton stays hot, Smith will go nuts here.
Eric Decker, Broncos vs. Chargers: If you are not paying attention, you are missing one of the better new WRs in the league. Decker dropped a pair of TDs on the Packers last week, and while QB Kyle Orton likes Brandon Lloyd, he seems to love Decker for the TDs, and that’s good enough for me. Hey, I have him in 3 leagues!
DeSean Jackson, Eagles at Bills: QB Mike Vick had strong words for the media after the Eagles fell to 1-3. Usually when the Birds fall on hard times they come out bombing, and Jackson may be the best option here. Philly will be tough this week, so I wonder if the Bills have guys that can run with Jackson?
A.J. Green, Bengals at Jaguars: More people are hot on Green and although he’s good, this may be a week to look elsewhere. The Jaguars play a pretty good pass defense, and QB Andy Dalton has had a rough go of it the last few weeks.
Stevie Johnson, Saints at Panthers: I am not sold on his return, and I think you can do better. Colston was back in the line-up last week, but it mattered very little as he had just one grab. Not ready for your starting spot yet.
Stevie Johnson, Bills vs. Eagles: The Eagles do have a physical secondary, and that may hurt the smaller Johnson. Teams are learning he is the best option in Buffalo, and he is finding less room of late.
Yes it is time to go to the bins and find some guys worth a look. It is still early enough to steal a guy that can make a difference, maybe one of these:
Stevan Ridley, RB, Patriots: Bill Belichick has seemingly done it again. He finds a guy not many have heard of and turns into a production guy on his prime time team. Much like Danny Woodhead last year, he is small and quick and has a nose for the big explosive run.
Isaac Redman, RB, Steelers: Even if Mendenhall is healthy, Redman has the chance to see more playing time. He looked decent when being called upon last week against Houston, and if he can produce, he will get more chances.
Ryan Torain, RB, Redskins: A bye week this week may make you forget, but don’t. He was the best Redskins runner last year, and seems to be back healthy. Although head coach Mike Shanahan changes starting RBs like many change underwear, you should still grab Torain.
Justin Forsett, RB, Seahawks: The numbers may still not be there, but I have seen Forsett get a bit more involved, plus Marshawn Lynch just isn’t the premier back we all though he would be. Forsett can be more active very soon, and you may want to be ready for him.
Arnelious Benn, WR, Buccaneers: Last years sensation Mike Williams has done very little this year, and Benn seems to be the all around better target right now. Yes they serve better as a running team, but if they find the air game, this guy will be in front of it.
So once again fans here we go. Another week, and more great advice for you to read on, and hopefully it pays off. I will be busy this week getting my teams in gear, so you should too. Good luck everyone.
If you’d like to hear anything else from me on topics or ideas I can be reached at [email protected]