James Morris hails from Rio Rancho, NM and has been playing fantasy sports for just over 15 years. Not only does he write the Bengals fantasy section, but he also does the Miami Dolphins fantasy section. Crossing over, Morris writes the fantasy sections for the Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA. Just send him an email and he will reply back the same day with your answer. Or, find him on Twitter (Fantasyguy23) and get all your NFL news before it hits the national media.
Week 15 is the first week of the fantasy football playoffs for some, but the second week for most. I know by email, Facebook and Twitter that a lot of you have made it to the second round and I’d like to congratulate you on a well played season thus far. But, the work doesn’t stop there as we still have two weeks left. I know some leagues play until Week 17, but most hardcore leagues don’t because Week 17 sees many stars resting.
Remember, second place is just the first loser!
Josh Freeman – QB, Buccaneers: The Saints may have won their Bounty case against the NFL, but that doesn’t change the fact that they give up the most fantasy points (FP) to QBs this season at a whopping 24.8 PPG. Freeman is averaging 17.7 PPG, and is the No. 10-ranked QB over the last four weeks according to NFL.com fantasy scoring.
Reggie Bush – RB, Dolphins: The Dolphins coaching staff seemed to figure out last week that they need to get Bush involved more in the passing game if they want to have a chance at winning. They did just that and he finished with a respectable 65 yards rushing and 5 catches for 38 yards. While he didn’t score, the 15 points were good enough for an RB2 ranking in NFL.com PPR scoring formats. The Jaguars give up 28.1 PPG to RBs in PPR formats this season, so I expect the Dolphins to let Bush do what he does best and catch the ball more.
Anquan Boldin – WR, Ravens: While I am a little worried about the switch in offensive coordinators, Boldin is on a hot streak over the last two games in which he has totaled 159 yards receiving and 3 TDs. Because of the offensive switch, you can be sure the Ravens will throw the ball more and that is always good news for a WR. Denver is ninth in FP allowed to WRs at 19.7 PPG in PPR formats, but Boldin should have a solid WR2/3 type of game.
Mike Williams – WR, Buccaneers: Because the Saints give up so many fantasy points to opposing offenses, I would love to play just about anyone in a Bucs uniform this weekend. Williams is only owned in 65.6 percent of NFL.com leagues, and started in 31.9 percent of them, making him a prime sleeper candidate for this weekend.
Martellus Bennett – TE, Giants: Bennett has racked up 10 catches for 114 yards and 2 TDs over the last two games, and this week gets a Falcons defense that gives up the 12th-most FP to TEs at 8.1 PPG in PPR formats. That may not sound like a lot, but the worst defense for TEs (Redskins) gives up just 11.0 PPG, so the difference isn’t as much as you would think.
Detroit Lions Defense: I’m not even going to sugarcoat this. The Cardinals are a REALLY bad offensive team and I would play WHATEVER defense they played against this week. It just so happens to be the Lions, and as long as Ndamukong Suh can keep from stomping on someone or kicking them in the groin, the Lions are a top-tier fantasy defense against a team full of QBs that play pitch-n-catch with defenses. The Lions are owned in 68.3 percent of NFL.com leagues, but that number is raising every single day as owners are flocking to the waiver wire to grab them for this weekend (28,141 this week alone).
Nick Foles – QB, Eagles: Despite Foles going off for 381 yards and 3 total TDs last week, I don’t like him at all against a Bengals defense that ranks No. 7 in the NFL at fantasy points allowed to QBs (16.9 PPG). Foles beat up on a generous Buccaneers secondary (second worst with 23.8 PPG to QBs), which is the polar opposite of the Bengals. If you jumped on the Foles bandwagon, jump back off before the wheels fall off.
Andrew Luck – QB, Colts: Luck didn’t have a good day (196 passing yards, TD and 2 INTs) against a Titans defense that gives up 20.8 PPG to QBs, so I don’t really see him doing much better against a Texans defense looking for revenge after the 42-14 blowout on Monday Night Football last week. The Texans know the Colts aren’t a running team, so they are sure to gear their defense to stopping Luck and the passing attack. I would rank Luck in the 15-20 range for QBs this week.
C.J. Spiller – RB, Bills: I saw one highly-respected website put Spiller as their No. 9-ranked fantasy RB this week, which is crazy to me because the Seahawks are ranked No. 6 in yards allowed to RBs (1,092) and No. 4 for FP allowed to RBs (14.7 PPG). Not to mention the Seahawks have the No. 5-ranked fantasy defense over the last month.
Jacquizz Rodgers – RB, Falcons: Rodgers is a good example of why you shouldn’t get too hyper over late-season promotions (if you can call it that). If he was good enough to play over Michael Turner, the Falcons would have moved him up the depth chart months ago. Because the Falcons want to lessen Turner’s workload, owners have been flocking to the waiver wire and picking up Rodgers in the hopes of getting waiver wire gold after the trade deadline. Instead of gold Rodgers is looking more like Tungsten thanks to his 129 yards rushing, 15 catches for 104 yards receiving and single TD over the last four games. That averages out to just 32.3 yards rushing and 3.75 catches for 26 yards receiving. Can you say overrated?
T.Y. Hilton – WR, Colts: Hilton got a lot of fantasy football run due to his 100-yard games in Weeks 11 and 13. However, he had 33- and 50-yard games in Weeks 12 and 14. This week the Colts lock horns with a team sure to be seeing red after a thrashing on a national stage in Week 14. I wouldn’t even look at Hilton in my flex spot if I could help it.
Justin Blackmon – WR, Jaguars: Blackmon’s stats are skewed if you look at the last four games, so I will take his last three games and tell you he is averaging just 4.0 receptions and 42.7 yards. And, with Cecil Shorts due back this week, things are not looking any better for the much-hyped Jaguars rookie WR. I would give Blackmon a flex ranking this week, but would try my best to find other options at WR if at all possible.
Brandon Myers – TE, Raiders: I think we all saw Myers’s Week 13 game against the Browns (14 catches for 130 yards and a TD) and thought we would catch lightning in a bottle if we grabbed him off the waiver wire. Instead, he fizzled out last week and hauled in just one pass for seven yards. This week the Raiders get a Chiefs defense that is actually ranked No. 5 at TE points allowed with 7.3 PPG.
Chicago Bears Defense: The Bears are once again being bitten by the injury bug, and will be without MLB Brian Urlacher (hamstring), DE Shea McClellin (MCL), S Craig Steltz (pectoral) and CB Sherrick McManis (knee), and Tim Jennings (shoulder) may or may not be back for this week’s game. Add to that Greg Jennings looks to be back and ready to contribute and you have a recipe for another fantasy bust week for NFL.com’s No. 1-owned and started defense (99.3 percent owned, 91.0 percent started).