- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade19 hrs ago
Before we dive into Thursday's desperation plays, let's have a quick word about the quarterback who is, at the moment, the best buy-low in fantasy. Cam Newton owners are an angry, unsatisfied bunch right now — or at least they seem to be, based on various complaint-tweets.
They don't seem to care that Cam is running again — 12 rush attempts last week, 36 over his past three games — and they certainly don't care that Newton has never ranked outside the top-5 at his position in any season.
Nope, Cam's owners are seeing those nine combined TDs in seven games, and they're displeased. Understandably so. But let's take a quick look at the series of favorable matchups in Carolina's second-half schedule, because it's kind of ridiculous:
Week 9 – vs. New Orleans Week 10 – at Philadelphia Week 11 – vs. Atlanta Week 12 – bye Week 13 – at Minnesota Week 14 – at New Orleans Week 15 – vs. Tampa Bay Week 16 – vs. Cleveland Week 17 – at Atlanta
- Andy Behrens at Yahoo Sports Fantasy Minute1 day ago
For the second straight week, the NFL has given us a Thursday night matchup that doesn't seem like a fantasy wasteland. Both the Saints and Panthers feature high-end skill players — no-doubt fantasy starters like Brees, Benjamin, Graham, Ingram and Olsen — and these teams offer a few flex-worthy fliers as well. New Orleans rookie Brandin Cooks blew up in Week 8, finding the end-zone twice, and he's a decent bet to produce against a sketchy Carolina secondary. DeAngelo Williams returns for the Panthers this week (we think), after missing his team's previous four games with an ankle issue. His presence complicates the fantasy picture for Jonathan Stewart, who had quietly surged in Williams' absence. Carolina and New Orleans have fielded user-friendly defenses thus far, which makes this matchup a nice spot for gamers to get aggressive.
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade3 days ago
Mid-way through the third quarter at Heinz Field on Sunday, Martavis Bryant broke open on a quick slant, shedding Colts corner Josh Gordy with ease. Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw an absolute dart that hit Bryant in stride, on the hands ... and the rookie bobble the ball, then dropped it.
Immediately, Bryant hung his head in disbelief. Only a single safety stood between Bryant and a 77-yard touchdown, which would have been his third spike of the afternoon.
"I should have kept my eyes on the ball and focused," Bryant would later say. "I'm going to get a lot more work this week on the JUGS machine and get back to work."
Had Martavis snagged the ball, he might still be running. It was the right throw against beaten coverage. And if Bryant would have grabbed it, then Roethlisberger might now own the all-time NFL single-game rec...
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade4 days ago
It isn't every day that fantasy owners are disgusted by an 84-yard reception, but Sammy Watkins is in the business of making the impossible happen. Early in the second quarter of Buffalo's decisive win over the Jets on Sunday, Watkins hauled in a deep dart from Kyle Orton, raced for the end-zone, and ... well, he did not quite arrive at his intended destination.
Watkins decelerated, gave us a premature sky-point celebration, and was caught from behind by Saalim Hakim just short of the goal line. Brutal play by an otherwise brilliant rookie — and Sammy even took a peek over his shoulder after the catch, so it's not like he was unaware of the pursuit.
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade7 days ago
This week, the Thursday game is a feast for the fantasy community. We've conditioned ourselves to be wary of mid-week football, sure, but tonight we get a pair of dominant offenses. Denver again ranks first in the NFL in scoring (31.5 PPG), and San Diego isn't far behind (26.3); these teams have combined to average 754.0 total yards per game.
In fact, the Broncos and Chargers have been so ridiculously productive this season that neither team offers a starting skill player who perfectly fits the definition of a flier for our purposes here (35 percent owned or less). So instead of building a case for, say, Ladarius Green — a guy who played only eight snaps last week and saw no targets — let's instead break protocol and consider a widely owned fantasy asset who has, to date, disappointed everyone.
Keenan Allen, come on down.Sun, Nov 210:00 AM PSTSan Diego at MiamiPreview Game
- Andy Behrens at Yahoo Sports Fantasy Minute9 days ago
Finally, a Thursday night game that fantasy owners can fully embrace. Denver and San Diego have combined to average 57.8 total points and 754.0 net yards per game through seven weeks. These teams are fantasy machines.
Ronnie Hillman and rookie Branden Oliver have both emerged as waiver wire revelations in recent weeks. Hillman is coming off back-to-back games in which he's topped 100 scrimmage yards, and both performances were in difficult matchups (NYJ, SF). He's an obvious fantasy starter at home, facing a Bolts defense that allows 4.5 yards per carry to opposing backs. Oliver's matchup isn't nearly as friendly, as Denver's defense currently ranks third in the league against the run, allowing just 74.3 rushing yards per game and 3.3 yards per carry. But Oliver has certainly passed the eye test. He's running as an every-down, all-situation back, a powerful ball-carrier with vision and pass-catching ability. His workload have been significant, too, with every other Chargers RB sidelined by injury. Even against a challenging opponent in a difficult environment, you really have to think of Oliver as a viable RB2.
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade9 days ago
OK, let's begin by acknowledging the fact that Bryce Brown has legit talent. In fact, for two extraordinary weeks in 2012, Brown ruled the fantasy world. He piled up 347 rushing yards and four TDs for Philadelphia over just two games, playing in relief of the injured LeSean McCoy.
Brown was fumbly, you'll recall, but he was also electric. Good size, good speed, good player. The good times soon ended, however, as Brown put up a pair of dud performances (28 carries, 40 yards) before slipping back into a supporting role. But he definitely demonstrated the ability to produce big plays and big fantasy lines, no question.
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade10 days ago
No matter what you expected from the Jacksonville Jaguars running game entering the season, the team has no doubt disappointed you.
After six weeks, the biggest single-game rushing total delivered by any Jaguars back had been Toby Gerhart's 42-yard performance in the opener — and he'd needed 18 carries to get there.
On Sunday, Denard Robinson set the bar a bit higher. By the end of the first quarter against Cleveland, Robinson had already rushed for 62 yards on seven carries. He would eventually finish with 127 yards on 22 attempts, with a nifty 8-yard touchdown run included. You can catch the highlights right here, if for some reason you weren't glued to the CLE-JAC clash as the drama was unfolding.Sun, Nov 210:00 AM PSTJacksonville at CincinnatiPreview Game
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade11 days ago
Entering play on Sunday, Seattle's defense had allowed only two rushing touchdowns all season, and they'd held opposing ball-carriers to just just 3.1 yards per carry. The only back to top the 60-yard mark against the Seahawks had been DeMarco Murray, the NFL's leading rusher. Whatever else went wrong for the defending Super Bowl champs, the team's D was still stuffing the run.
But not this week.
St. Louis rookie Tre Mason carried the ball 18 times against Seattle on Sunday, gaining a team-high 85 yards. His afternoon included a 6-yard touchdown run, the first score of his pro career, and he broke off his second 20-plus yard gain in as many weeks. Benny Cunningham got the start for the Rams, but Mason carried the mail. (He also dropped a piece of mail, but his team kinda/sorta recovered.)
- Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade14 days ago
Who, exactly, demanded another prime-time matchup involving New England and New York?
The Pats are like the NFL equivalent of a reliable seven-passenger vehicle with a respectable safety record. The Jets are a sinkhole of despair. The Julian and Geno show is happening, tonight . Hooray, AFC East. Woo.
Here's a pair of widely available names, both approved for use if you're dealing with injuries and/or bye-week issues...
WR Brandon LaFell, NE (24 percent owned, 11 percent started) – Over the past four weeks, LaFell has seen 26 targets, catching 15 for 282 yards and three scores. Yeah, this is the same guy who was a mild disappointment in each of his four seasons in Carolina, but the team context is different these days. LaFell is on pace to establish new career highs in receiving yardage and touchdowns.
Here are the usage stats for the Pats receiving corps in Week 6, via Pro Football Focus: