NFL trades, teams playing better/worse than expected and top round picks underachieving, welcome to Fantasy Football week 5 of the NFL. It sure has been a crazy season so far, filled with crazy stuff, and unpredictability. I myself have watched a few of my teams suffer, but still am hanging on tough with an overall record of 10-6.
In this article I will be busy with the usual Start ‘Em/Sit ‘Em recommendations, but will also take a look at the 2 big trades made and look for more life on the waiver wires. So pay close attention, it is getting serious here. As always, Sit ‘Em back, read and relax, and of course, good luck!
Kyle Orton, Broncos at Ravens: Lots of hype has been going on about how good the Ravens pass defense is, but here is the toughest pass attack they have faced yet. the Broncos simply cannot run the football, and Kyle Orton has been playing much better than anyone expected. Brandon Lloyd, Eddie Royal and Jabar Gaffney have been doing a great job so far this year, so we expect big numbers here if the Broncos have a prayer. As odd as the season has been for them, you just never know.
Peyton Manning, Colts at Chiefs: A road QB vs. the Chiefs is always risky, not to mention that the Chiefs secondary has improved. All that being said, here is a simple fact: Peyton Manning and the Colts will not go 2-3, no way, shape, or form. The Colts need to re-establish themselves, and this one, against the undefeated Chiefs, is a great Start ‘Eming point.
Sam Bradford, Rams at Lions: Everyone is buying the hype, but don’t run to Bradford, Lions or not. The Lions are not a great defense, but Bradford is also still a rookie. These are those kind of games where many get heart-broken, and also the kind of game where a guy like Steven Jackson can go off. Not overly excited about Bradford quite yet.
Matt Schaub, Texans vs. Giants: Andre Johnson is nursing an ankle injury, now Jacoby Jones may be out as well. The Texans have surprised many by being able to grind wins out on the ground and they may choose to do just that again this week. Schaub has had a very average Start ‘Em to this year, and I don’t see him getting to flashy against the Giants, who collected double digit sacks last week vs. the Bears.
Donovan McNabb, Redskins vs. Packers: I was thinking that between the Rams game and the revenge game against Philly, that we would see a big time scoring push by McNabb. Well I can tell you I was wrong. McNabb has been doing just enough, and it has been far from special. Yes he might get you a little, but you need more than a little at QB these days in fantasy.
Fred Jackson, Bills vs. Jaguars: Marshawn Lynch is gone, and C.J. Spiller is not quite ready to take the lead, so Jackson is back as the Start ‘Emer. If you remember last year, when Lynch was suspended, Jackson was the hottest story in fantasy football. Here is a guy with great hands and runs tough, plus the Jags defense is not a brick wall, so Jackson should play a big role this week, and may even lead the Bills to their first win.
Matt Forte, Bears at Panthers: I still don’t like Forte’s running style, but with QB Jay Cutler out, and the offensive line looking like civs. last week, you should see a ton of check down and screen passes to Forte. If any Rb in the league can go for double-digit grabs and turn it into something big it’s Forte, and if the Bears have a prayer of winning, he will need to be huge.
Arian Foster, Texans vs. Giants: The Giants have been decent against the run, but Foster showed last week he is the real deal. He sat out for discipline reasons early on last week, then just ho-hummed his way to over 100 yards and found the end zone twice. Derrick ward looked good and some thought he may steal some carries but here is 2 notes for you: 1) Ward is questionable this week and 2) I dare you to Sit ‘Em Foster.
Brandon Jackson, Packers at Redskins: If you made this big free-agent move a few weeks back, the time may be here to un-do it. Jackson has been very poor for fantasy owners and is losing more and more time to Kuhn in that backfield. He survived the Marshawn Lynch trade but is not worth it at all right now.
LeSean McCoy, Eagles at 49ers: A rib injury of any sort is really painful for football players. I am pretty sure that tough linebacker Patrick Willis would love to introduce his helmet to those ribs and we don’t know how many pops McCoy can survive. He had a decent week last week as Kevin Kolb just was not able to go down field, but i would not bank on that this week. The 49ers may have struggled a bit on defense so far, but have a real quick core of linebackers.
LaDainian Tomlinson, Jets vs. Vikings: The one thing the Vikings do really well is stop the run. It will be an awesome showdown as one of the top front lines of defense takes on one of the very best offensive lines in the league. I don’t want everyone to rush out and jump on L.T. yet, remember that huge week last week was against the Bills, and the game was a blow out early. Mark Sanchez will be busy through the air as they want to see what Santonio Holmes is worth fresh off suspension.
Lance Moore, Saints at Cardinals: Marquis Colston, Devery Henderson, Robert Meacham and even Jeremy Shockey just don’t seem to want the action, so Moore will take it. throughout his career Moore has been a hot/cold player, and right now he is red-hot. the Cardinals don’t do very much on defense to scare teams, so we should see big things from Moore, that is unless Brees gets his usual change of mind and uses someone else.
Calvin Johnson, Lions vs. Rams: Unlike guys like Larry Fitzgerald it does not seem to matter who is at QB for the Lions, Johnson will get his. Last week 2 big TDs and now this week he gets the Rams, who are not stacked at corner. The theory of “just throw it up and he will get it” was made for Johnson, he is by far the best asset on this team.
Any Chicago WR vs. Panthers: It is so hard to predict who shows up here, and now they are running Todd Collins out at QB. You Start ‘Em a Bear WR only if everyone else on your roster is on a bye. The best WR options on this team are TE Greg Olsen and Rb Matt Forte, period!
DeSean Jackson, Eagles at 49ers: I hate to recommend Sit ‘Emting the bulk of Eagles skill players, but Kevin Kolb has completed just 3 passes to Jackson so far this season in his 6 quarters. Kolb just does not have the long pass ability needed to Jackson to be at his best. We may see lots of TE stuff from Kolb or slot, but not enough of Jackson.
Percy Harvin, Vikings at Jets: In case you were sleeping under a rock, the Vikings traded for Randy Moss. You know that Moss will be very busy and the Vikings will also try and slow it down with Adrian Peterson. Also CB Cromartie has looked real good so far for the Jets and he will be on Harvin plenty.
There are always new players showing up and making some kind of impact. Who do you need, or like to try and get? Well maybe choose from this list:
Dexter McCluster, WR/RB Chiefs: If you get points for return yards, this could be a big week for McCluster. I expect him to be busy with the Colts coming to town, and he is one teammate injury away from being really active. He is a guy with lots of skill, and an asset in bigger leagues.
Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seahawks: You don’t go out and trade for a guy like this and make him Sit ‘Em. He should be available in some leagues, and although they are on a bye this week, I expect him to be pretty active the rest of the season.
Brandon Tate, WR, Patriots: The trade of Randy Moss leaves Tom Brady lacking a fast, deep threat. Tate is the best possible candidate here, and should see a big increase in targets now that Moss is gone.
Davonne Bess, WR, Dolphins: Over the last few weeks he has been very busy and teams seem to be stacking it up against Brandon Marshall. Bess has shown great hands and good speed when needed so far this season. He can get bigger as the season rolls on now that Marshall has found his way with this offense.
Javon Ringer, RB, Titans: It may be just me, but something isn’t quite right with Chris Johnson. Keep an eye on Ringer, as he has managed some big burst the last few weeks, and may have earned a few more touches. If Johnson goes down he will cause the biggest free agent frenzy in fantasy history. If you have the room to spare, get him now, just in case.
The trade of Randy Moss, and how it affects his owners:
Moss is still a super WR, and it just seemed like the Patriots were looking for a new style of offense. For years in Minnesota, Moss was amazing, and quite frankly Daunte Culpepper who was his QB then, was nothing without him. Brett Favre has lobbied for teams to get Moss for years and you know he will be doing all he can to make him feel welcome. Moss is still fast and a big target, so there is no reason why this trade will kill him. If you have Moss, he has perhaps a better chance of seeing grabs with a limited group then he did in New England, where on any week, any guy can dominate the action. Feel free to keep Moss rolling, you should be fine.
The Marshawn Lynch trade means what?
Lynch had a real good rookie season, but fell way out of favor in Buffalo ever since. He is not a big pass catcher or a great blocker, but Lynch is a good runner. Seattle has had limited action on the ground this year, but with Lynch joining Justin Forsett adds a nice 1-2 punch for them. For now if you can grab Lynch and put him on your bench and wait it out to see what you get. On the flip side, grab Fred Jackson now. The Bills really like this guy and have now paved the way for him to do big things, the way he did last year while Lynch was serving a suspension.
Eagles WR owners should panic. We don’t know for sure how long Michael Vick will be out, but Kevin Kolb has shown an inability to play deep ball with his receivers. Kolb makes this team very short passing team, and that does not help fantasy owners.
With Andre Johnson being iffy week to week with that ankle, Matt Schaub owners may have to look to a back up QB. Schaub has had some real low days against Oakland and Indy, and the Texans showed they have no problems winning a game on the ground. As long as Andre is down, Schaub is in trouble.
Just when fantasy owners were falling in love with Darren McFadden he turns and has hamstring problems. It is always a tough injury for RBs and now the favor turns to Michael Bush. If Bush does well in relief, the magic of McFadden will slow down heavily. I, like many had both Bush and McFadden, than was forced to release Bush to make other moves, and now it is being regretted. If you have both, try and hang on to both as this Sit ‘Emuation will get sticky.
OK, here is all the updates I have for week 5. I know it is getting harder, so work hard, study hard and best of luck to all of you.
Good Luck in week 4 everyone. Next week I will be back with Bi-weekly Power Rankings, and more fantasy news. Also if you wish to see more of “Beat The Shark”, my weekly NFL pick em contest, you can see it at MVPPhilly.com Thanks again readers.
If you’d like to hear anything else from me on topics or ideas I can be reached at [email protected]
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