Andy Behrens at Yahoo Sports Fantasy Minute 3 days ago
Beware, gamers. This year, the Thanksgiving slate is loaded with turkeys. Here are three names to avoid on Thursday ...
Jay Cutler at Detroit – Despite a messy season in reality, Jay has actually delivered top-8 fantasy QB numbers to this point in the season. But you'd be wise to seek alternatives this week. Jay had five giveaways against the Lions last season, and Detroit's defense has been stingy to opposing quarterbacks this year, yielding the second-fewest fantasy points to the position.
Michael Crabtree vs. Seattle – The Niners and Seahawks are likely to give us a tremendous game on Thursday, but not for fantasy purposes. Crabtree is not to be trusted. He's owned in 87 percent of Yahoo leagues, but he's a dicey start against Seattle. He's played nine career games against the Seahawks (postseason included), and he hasn't yet scored a touchdown. Anquan Boldin has been a more bankable fantasy asset to this year, and it's not close. Seattle is giving up the fewest fantasy points to opposing wideouts this year, so the matchup is horrendous.
But that's enough bad news. Here's a Thursday play you can trust ...
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 4 days ago
Based on a quick scan of C.J. Anderson's bio, you wouldn't call him an obvious candidate for fantasy stardom. He shared the rushing workload for a three-win team in his final collegiate season at Cal, then failed to dazzle at the scouting combine (4.60 speed). Two months ago, Anderson was merely another name on the depth chart for Denver — an undrafted second-year back, the handcuff to the handcuff.
And then injuries hit the Broncos backfield. We're now three weeks into Anderson's reign as the featured runner, and no opposing defense has managed to hold him below 100 scrimmage yards. He ripped off 163 at Oakland, then 115 at St. Louis, and he shredded Miami's defense for 195 on Sunday.
"Big fellas did a great job up front," he said, like a seasoned pro accustomed to huge rushing totals.
Anderson is a powerful back with vision and tackle-breaking ability, tied to an ideal offense. Congrats to those who own him, because you appear to have won the 2014 waiver lottery. With Ronnie Hillman on a bad wheel, it's tough to imagine Anderson fading in the final weeks.
If we were redrafting for December, he'd be an easy first-rounder.
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 8 days ago
OK, so the last Rubio replacement discussed around here did not fill the stat sheet quite as much as we'd hoped. But there's a new Wolves point to consider this week, and he's widely available...
PG Mo Williams, Min (20 percent owned)
Mo drew the start against the Knicks on Wednesday, delivering a stellar line: 14 points, 5-of-9 FGs, 2 threes, 13 dimes. Kevin Martin was scorching hot (37 points), and Williams fed him early, often and in rhythm. Check the postgame praise for Mo, from both Martin and head coach Flip Saunders:
C Alex Len, Pho (15 percent owned)
PG/SG Rodney Stuckey, Ind (23 percent owned)
SG Bojan Bogdanovic, Bkn (11 percent owned)
PF/C Chris Kaman, Por (20 percent owned)
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 8 days ago
Just for the record, the official position of this blog is that you can do without any Oakland Raiders in your fantasy lineup in Week 12.
In fact, if I were playing in a 10-team, 2-quarterback AFC West-only league, I might still look to avoid Raiders. The team ranks dead-last in the NFL in scoring (15.2 PPG), total yards (276.4 YPG), rushing offense (63.0) and yards-per-play (4.7). This is not exactly a ripe fantasy situation.
On Thursday, the league's least productive offense will face Kansas City's D, a unit that's allowed the second-fewest total points to opponents (17.1 PPG). KC ranks first in pass defense (201.6 YPG), and, incredibly enough, the team has not yet allowed a rushing touchdown.
So this is not an ideal week to load up on Raiders. (The last such week was in 2002.)
Andy Behrens at Yahoo Sports Fantasy Minute 9 days ago
OK, let's make this as simple as possible. Here is the official list of approved fantasy starters for this week's edition of TNF: Jamaal Charles, Kansas City's defense.
Here is the official list of players to avoid: Everyone else.
Are we done here? No?
Alright, fine. Just please don't expect a shootout from the Chiefs and Raiders this Thursday. KC's defense has held opponents to just 17.1 points per game, the second-lowest total in the league, and the team ranks first against the pass (201.6 YPG). Oakland is a winless team that ranks dead-last in the NFL in scoring (15.2 PPG) and total yards (276.4 YPG). Please, we beg you, do not start any Raiders this week. None. Zero. Please.
Charles should of course feast on Oakland's D, a unit that allows the third-most fantasy points to running backs. Maybe Knile Davis has some flex appeal in deeper leagues. Alex Smith has only tossed 11 TD passes this season — incredibly, none of them to a wide receiver — so no elements of Kansas City's passing game are in the conversation in leagues of standard size.
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 10 days ago
We knew the Adrian Peterson story would take a few turns this week. The NFL certainly moved it along on Tuesday morning:
NFL announced Adrian Peterson is suspended without pay for at least the remainder of the 2014 season. Expect an appeal
Obviously, with this being a legal/disciplinary issue in the NFL, we're nowhere near a full resolution. The NFLPA will appeal the suspension, demanding that a neutral arbitrator rule on the matter. A separate ruling allows the league to keep Peterson on the Commissioner's Exempt List. This remains a murky situation, but Peterson doesn't have a clear path to returning to action in the current season.
Our mission here of course is not to judge the process or any of the individuals involved, but rather to think about the tiniest, least significant aspect of the story. For the record, we hate reducing any story as ugly and complicated as this to fantasy impact, but that's the job.
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 11 days ago
Yup, that's right: Josh Gordon is back in our fantasy lives. Reinstated, officially. He's available for immediate use.
This is really a rough blow to that one Ohio car dealership, which loses a key member of the sales force. But things are obviously looking up for the Cleveland Browns.
Gordon of course led the NFL in receiving yardage last season, catching 87 balls for 1,646 yards and nine TDs over just 14 games. He actually missed the first two weeks of the 2013 season due to suspension, then erupted in his return to action against Minnesota. Gordon saw a ridiculous 19 targets in his debut last year, hauling in 10 for 146 yards -- with a long highlight TD included.
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 11 days ago
If you're a Mike Evans fantasy owner, there's a decent chance you didn't draft him. Many of his original investors cut him loose in late-September, following the groin injury. Or they tossed him on the scrap heap in mid-October, when the Bucs were on their bye.
As it turns out, dropping Mike Evans was a minor fantasy disaster.
Evans visited the end-zone twice for Tampa Bay on Sunday, hauling in seven balls for 209 yards. Bucs quarterback Josh McCown was 7-for-9 throwing to the rookie, and 8-for-14 throwing to anyone else. Evans' touchdowns were both from distance, with the first covering 36 yards and the second 56. He routinely blew past coverage for field-flipping gains, and he was a monster in traffic. Catch the full highlight reel right here.
Yup, that's pretty much the Eagles-Packers game in a nutshell right there.
EARLY ADDS FOR WEEK 12
Andy Behrens at Yahoo Sports Fantasy Minute 14 days ago
Arian Foster owners, proceed to Plan B. According to multiple reports out of Houston, Foster (groin) is unlikely to play in the Texans' Week 11 matchup against Cleveland. The clear handcuff here is Alfred Blue, and for some unknowable reason he's still available in roughly three-quarters of all Yahoo leagues. Go get him... now .
No, Blue won't perfectly replace Foster's expected elite production, but he's a capable back in line for a full workload. Assuming he sees a featured role against the Browns, fantasy owners can expect double-digit point production. Cleveland's defense has allowed 4.7 yards per carry this season, so it's not as if Blue is facing an impossible challenge. Add him and enjoy.
Apologies in advance for the endless "YOU'RE MY BOY, BLUE!" jokes you'll hear on Fantasy Football Live. Brad cannot be controlled.
Folow Yahoo Sports' fantasy guru Andy Behrens on Twitter at @andybehrens.
Andy Behrens at Roto Arcade 14 days ago
Atlanta, Golden State and Indiana all have 2-game weeks upcoming, which means many of you will be looking for temporary assistance. Let's sweep the league for a five-pack of widely available replacement options...
SG/SF Anthony Morrow, OKC (32 percent owned)
OK, this will serve as last call on Morrow, a player we highlighted last week following his return to practice. Morrow dropped 28 points on the Celtics on Wednesday, going 11-for-16 from the field in 31 minutes with four 3s and five boards. These days, plenty of shots are available in OKC, and Morrow happens to be on the short list of Earth's best shooters. His career three-point percentage is 43.0, which is absurd (historically so). Westbrook and Durant are weeks away, so Morrow won't be starved for minutes. If you like points and threes (without sacrificing field goal percentage), this is your pickup.
PG Zach LaVine, Min (13 percent owned)
SG/SF K.J. McDaniels, Phi (23 percent owned)