The weeks are flying by right now - with Week 7 upon us, we're halfway through the fantasy football regular season already! On this episode, we put a bow on Week 6 and took a look at some interesting trends going into Week 7. We also enjoyed a Rabbid Rabbit, a saison style ale from Three Floyds, courtesy of our Social Media Queen, Stephanie Erpito. Thanks, Steph!
Listen to the Fantasy Football Podcast, 10/18/16: Week 7 Trends & Waivers
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Week 15 played host to many more high profile injuries than fantasy players are comfortable with. Good luck going into Championship Week - hopefully there aren't too many names on this list that are also on your roster.
Marcus Mariota went down this week in New England and was replaced by Zach Mettenberger, who had 242 yds with 2 TD and 2 INT, not terrible, but mostly garbage points. There's been conflicting reports as to whether or not he will play the rest of the season. He has been ruled out this week, so his fantasy relevance is over this year. He should be a QB2 in 2016.
T.J. Yates tore his ACL on a non contact play, something we've become quite familiar with this year. With Yates on the IR Brian Hoyer is still not likely to return, Brandon Weeden has suddenly become the man in Houston. Weeden, who got cut from a 2-win team, now finds himself starting for a 7-7 team that is leading its division. Oh, what a change.
LeSean McCoy has been diagnosed with a torn MCL and won't be playing in week 16. It's irrelevant to us if he comes back week 17, really, so look for Karlos Williams and Mike Gillislee to share carries, yay. Another split backfield means you might want to look elsewhere for a fill-in for McCoy.
Melvin Gordon has been disappointing all season, and now he's finally out for the season. He'll return next year with a lot of things different, probably a new coach, city and hopefully some more offensive talent around him. Danny Woodhead, who had an amazing four TD's last week, will be filling in with an increased role and will be an RB2/Flex for Thursday's game against Oakland.
Danny Amendola disappointed anyone who started him in Week 15, by fumbling the ball and promptly exiting the game, leaving us with negative points. It looks like he'll be out until the playoffs arrive. Owners who held on to Julian Edelman might see him return to your lineup in Week 16, so keep an eye on the injury reports, and get him in your lineups if he's playing. Brady has been starving for his slot receiver, and Edelman should produce well as soon as he returns.
Alshon Jeffery's injury status is top secret info here in Chicago, so we'll learn a little bit more on Wednesday. What we do know is that he left Sunday's game after his hamstring "tightened up a little bit". It's hard to tell what his status will be before Sunday, I just wouldn't recommend any other Bears WR's as a replacement for Jeffery, though Zach Miller could see a small bump in targets.
Tyrann Mathieu is done for the season after tearing his ACL, and this is definitely a big loss for the Cardinals defense. If you've been riding them all year, they have been great for you, but you might consider another pickup if something good is available. They are playing A.J. McCarron, so that's a plus, but there's still a lot of talent on the Bengals offense.
Brock Osweiler briefly left Sunday's game when he tweaked a non-throwing shoulder, but did return to finish the game, though he did not put up any points in the second half. Osweiler has been little help when it comes to winning games in Denver, so if Peyton Manning can go Week 16, the Broncos would do well to put him back in and bet on the vet to take them the rest of the way.
Adrian Peterson had an ankle sprain on Sunday, but wound up returning in the second half. This week, he'll be all systems go against a weak Giants run defense.
A.J. Green left the game in San Fran in the third quarter and didn't return, but that probably has something to do with the 24-0 score. Green did only have one catch in the game, and this is worrisome considering he has McCarron throwing him the ball. This week, they play Denver, so keep an eye on this tough matchup and his injury status.
Ted Ginn Jr. is another guy who left his game early, but he had the courtesy of putting up two touchdowns first. Ginn did return late in the game, showing that Carolina was just holding him back to be cautious. He'll be ready to go in Week 16 and has a hell of an upside.
Taking a look at the player trends over the past few weeks can reveal some surprising things - it's important, though, to temper expectations in some cases and realize that some great (and some awful) performances can be the product of gameflow as much as the talent and/or rising production of a player. But since each player can only be owned by one team at a time in most standard fantasy leagues, you've got to scoop them up before anyone else and make smart decisions as far as when to play a rising (or falling) star. What do you think about these scenarios? Will the players listed below live up to expectations based on recent weeks? Make sure to check out the podcast to find out which side we take on each player.
Mariota has exploded the last two weeks, throwing for 6 touchdowns against just one interception. Mariota is still only owned in 61% of yahoo leagues, but he’s the #8 overall QB so far this season. Mariota has a very favorable schedule ahead of him, with 5 of his next 6 games against bad teams before going into his week 13 bye. Mariota has finally found some receiving targets and could easily finish the season as a top 10 QB. We’ll start the line on him at 22 points this week, at home vs IND.
Week 6 vs DAL – 31/42, 294 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT, 13.46 pts
Anyone who follows us tracking trends knows that this one was coming. Rodgers is traditionally the gold standard for fantasy football consistency, but this year, especially the last few weeks, he has looked like fool’s gold. So far this season, Rodgers looks much like he did last year in completion percentage and yards per passing attempt, two categories that he used to excel in. Now Rodgers has a short week at home vs the Bears, but he’s likely to be without both Eddie Lacy and James Starks. Will the Bears be just what he needs to get his mechanics corrected, or do his struggles continue? We’ll start the line at 19 points.
James White is trending up in both points and touches, mostly thanks to the return of Tom Brady. Everyone knew that the focus of the offense would be much more towards passing once Brady returned, so White’s uptick is to be expected. The biggest question with the Patriots backs has always been – How long will this last? Dion Lewis is waiting in the wings to return, though it may not happen until after the Week 9 bye. With White playing better, do you keep starting him, or offer him up as trade bait? This week, the Patriots go to Pittsburgh to face the Steelers without Big Ben. We’ll start his line at 11.
Isaiah Crowell (CLE)
Week 4 @ WAS – 16/120 yds, 1 TD, 20.20 pts
Week 5 vs NE – 13/22 yds, 4.00 pts
Week 6 @ TEN – 9/16 yds, 3.60 pts
Isaiah Crowell started out the season like he was fired from a cannon. He put up just shy of 400 yards and 3 TDs in his first four games and looked like he was headed towards top-10 RB status for the season. Then it’s like he suddenly remembered what team he plays for, and promptly saw his production drop like a rock. This is partly due to the uptick in touches for Duke Johnson Jr, but when your yards per carry goes from 6.45 (Wk 1-4), to 1.72 (Wk 5 & 6), it’s hard to keep giving him the ball. Crowell is still 90% owned, and started in 51% of Yahoo leagues last week. This week he faces the Bengals in Cincy, and we’ll set his line at 9 points, and ask, would you start him this week?
Jamison Crowder has a larger role on the Redskins offense with Jordan Reed out with a concussion. It’s not settled if he’s coming back this week, but Reed is often out multiple weeks when he has a concussion. Crowder has made some big plays helping the team win each of the last two weeks. With the decline of DeSean Jackson, can Crowder step up to start filling some of that role? We’ll start the line for Crowder at 7 points for his matchup against the Lions, giving up the 5th most points to opposing WRs.
Antonio Brown was the consensus #1 pick going into the 2016 season, and he already has 2 games where he’s scored under 5 points. It’s not time to panic with Brown, but this week looks like it’s about as tough as matchups get. His starting QB will be Landry Jones and the opposing team will be the New England Patriots. It seems like this so-called juggernaut of an offense can never get going because of injuries and/or suspensions. Brown is the only consistent part, but even this week you may consider benching him. We’ll start our line for Brown at 12 points.
Hunter Henry (SD)
Week 4 vs NO – 7/4 rec, 61 yds, 1 TD, 12.10 pts
Week 5 @ OAK – 4/3 rec, 74 yds, 1 TD, 13.40 pts
Week 6 vs DEN – 8/6 rec, 83 yds, 1 TD, 14.30 pts
Now those are some numbers that are just screaming consistency. Hunter Henry is easily the most impressive rookie TE this season (there were only 3 drafted, after all). Having scored a TD in each of the last 3 games, he’s also drawn 19 targets and is 2nd in scoring over the last 4 games at the TE position. With Antonio Gates hobbled and on the way out anyways, Henry is in a perfect position to continue his breakout rookie season on a team that is always starving for pass catchers. This week, Henry faces the Falcons, who have given up the 5th most points to opposing tight ends. Can he continue his impressive streak? We’ll start his line at 13 points.
For Fantasy Football team managers, playing in week 15 is all about making the right starts to get to the championship. Whether you fought hard to get into the playoffs from the bottom of the league or coasted into a bye spot early on, everyone is on an even playing field and (in most cases) only has one shot.
We'll be paying special attention to the players that you should and shouldn't start in week 15 and what matchups to keep in mind should you make the championship game in Week 16. We're joined by regular guest and drinkfive.com contributor Mike Mocerino.
Welcome back! We're joined this week by fantasy football veteran Matt Ellis to discuss the best starts moving forward into Week 13. This is the last week of the regular season of most fantasy football leagues, so put your best foot forward!
Peterman completed 6-of-14 passes for 66 yards with five interceptions. Wow, Buffalo. Nice work. In this episode, we'll be touching on the Bills' and NFL fantasy players going forward as well as the other highs and lows of Week 11 and what they mean to your fantasy squad.