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.
There is so much that can go on in any given week in the NFL, that fantasy football is like our own persona reality TV show that we get to interact with. We draft teams, we add/drop people, and even trade players we no longer think have the skills to help out our title run.
The hardest thing to do is predict what you think will happen when there are SO many variables in play. I am one of the best at what I do, but not even I am right 100 percent of the time. Take for instance the tale of two halves that was Monday Night Football. It was all Chargers in the first half and all Broncos in the second half. That kind of a swing is unpredictable.
Let’s take a look back at some of the guys that helped us, some of the ones that hurt us, and where I was wrong and right in Week 6 of the NFL season.
Aaron Rodgers – QB, Packers: I normally don’t put elite players on the Winners list because that is what we expect them to do: win. The 338 passing yards are normal enough for a QB of Rodgers’s stature, but the 6 TDs are what makes his fantasy weekend truly amazing.
Robert Griffin III – QB, Redskins: RGIII didn’t have flashy yardage totals, but he put up numbers where it counts, touchdowns (3). Griffin threw for just 182 yards, ran for another 138 yards, but the 3 TDs accounted for 18 points all on their own in standard scoring formats. Despite the passing yards, he still ended Week 6 as the No. 2-ranked fantasy QB.
Josh Freeman – QB, Buccaneers: I had a feeling that Freeman and the Bucs offense would click this week, which is why I said to start Vincent Jackson. And, they did just that as Freeman finished with 328 yards passing and 3 TDs. The problem with Freeman is that he is streaky, so owning him is one of the more frustrating things in all of fantasy football.
Shonn Greene – RB, Jets: Green had a career day on Sunday as he run through, around and over the Colts defense to the tune of 161 yards and 3 TDs. He was easily the No. 1 fantasy RB with a total of 34 points in NFL.com PPR scoring formats. This wasn’t a breakout game for Greene, but 57 percent of NFL.com owners started him this week, so congratulations to some truly lucky people.
C.J. Spiller – RB, Bills: Spiller arose from the fantasy football graveyard just in time for Halloween as he torched the Cardinals run defense for 88 yards rushing, 22 yards receiving on 4 receptions and a TD. Because Fred Jackson is healthy, Spiller is only going to be used when the passing game is totally ineffective. He isn’t someone I would play, regardless of this week’s numbers.
Jeremy Maclin – WR, Eagles: Just when I completely write Maclin off and tell a few fantasy emailers not to play him, he runs out and catches 6 balls for 130 yards and a TD. Maclin and the Eagles passing game is such a rollercoaster ride for stats that it is almost impossible to play them, or sit them! You want my advice on Week 8 (bye in Week 7) right now? Flip a coin; I got heads.
Vincent Jackson – WR, Buccaneers: And my pick for WR paid off this week as V-Jax hauled in 4 passes for 66 yards and 2 TDs. Because he did so well this week, there is no way on God’s green earth I am playing him next week. He has a performance history this season of only being good every other week.
Jordy Nelson – WR, Packers: Nelson put the smack down on the Texans secondary on Sunday night as he roasted them for 9 catches, 121 yards and 3 TDs. Nelson flew by Dez Bryant for fantasy points at WR this week and took home the No. 1 spot in Week 6.
Kyle Rudolph – TE, Vikings: My sleeper pick in the preseason at TE is making me look better and better with each passing week. This week he finished with 6 catches for 56 yards, a TD and a 2-point conversion as icing on the cake. This kid is going to be fantasy gold all season long, and you can remember that I told you about him before the big box websites did!
Antonio Gates – TE, Chargers: Fantasy owners have been waiting patiently for Gates to finally bust out and have that great game we are so accustomed to. Well, Gates did just that on MNF as he hauled in 6 passes for 81 yards and 2 TDs. What is ironic is that I just answered an email from a fan about Gates. He was thinking of giving up on him and trading him, but I told him to stay the course and trust in him as he is still an elite talent. I just hope that fan listened and kept Gates in his lineup this week!
Atlanta Falcons Defense: Those who emailed me, or reached out via social media, and asked about possible waiver-wire defenses this week got told to go with the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons did allow 20 points to the Raiders, but they also racked up 3 sacks, 2 recovered fumbles, and an INT that they ran back to the house for a defensive TD. All totaled, the Falcons defense finished ranked No. 2 this week behind the Giants.
Denver Broncos Defense: In a Monday-night thriller, the Broncos defense played pitch-n-catch with Philip Rivers in the second half of the game. The Broncos defense finished with 4 INTs, 2 sacks, 2 recovered fumbles, 2 defensive touchdowns and 18 points allowed. That was good enough to rank them as the No. 1 fantasy defense in Week 6.
Andrew Luck – QB, Colts: And on the other side of the rookie coin we have Luck, who threw for a respectable 280 yards, but failed to find the end zone. Because Luck didn’t score, he ranked out at No. 22 in NFL.com scoring.
Alex Smith – QB, 49ers: There is a reason why I want nothing to do with Smith in fantasy leagues, and it is because eventually he is going to remember he is Alex Smith and go back to single-handedly losing fantasy owners’ games because of his poor play. This week Smith and the 49ers offense went into Operation Shutdown as they scored a grand total of 3 points, while Smith threw for 200 yards and played pitch-n-catch with the Giants defense for a total of 3 INTs. Smith ranked out as the dead-last fantasy QB in Week 6.
Rashard Mendenhall, – RB Steelers: Mendenhall tweaked his Achilles tendon, and finished with just 11 yards receiving and 6 yards rushing. It was truly a disappointing game for fantasy owners who have been holding on to him all season long, just to see him exit the game with yet another injury.
Stevan Ridley – RB, Patriots: Ridley’s riddle continued on Sunday as the Patriots running back scrambled for just 34 yards on 16 carries (2.1 YPC). This was more of a testament to Seattle’s run defense than a decline in Ridley’s abilities. Chalk it up to a good defensive showing, and play Ridley as normal going forward.
Darrius Heyward-Bay – WR, Raiders: DHB jumped from 9 percentage points in being started in NFL.com fantasy leagues this week, and even NFL.com expected big things for him as they projected him out at 5 catches for 72 yards and a TD. What he actually did was 20 yards rushing on an end-around, and didn’t manage to log a single catch on the day. I would seriously consider cutting DHB if it weren’t for the waiver wires being picked clean at this point.
Dwayne Bowe – WR, Chiefs: I told every single person that emailed, Facebooked or Twittered me not to start a single Chiefs player this week. Not because the Bucs defense is that good; rather, because Brady Quinn was under center. Because of that Bowe managed just 21 yards on 3 catches on Sunday.
Jermichael Finley – TE, Packers: Finley has been by far one of the biggest fantasy football busts this season, as he has been plagued by dropped passes and admittedly has a lack of chemistry with his QB, Aaron Rodgers. This week Finley managed to catch 2 passes for a meager 12 yards and no end zone vists. The reality is that unless there is a drastic change in Finley’s on-field production, he is not going to be worth playing and you should find other options at TE going forward.
San Francisco 49ers Defense: It is rare for a defense to break even in fantasy terms, but that is just with the 49ers did this week. Because they allowed 26 points, and didn’t register a single defensive stat for fantasy scoring (no INTs, fumbles, sacks, etc.), they got fantasy owners a big fat 0.00 in NFL.com scoring. While they didn’t help you, they also didn’t hurt you I guess is the best way to look at it.