Each week the Noise highlights six unobvious names who he believes are destined to morph into human torpedos. For those playing the Lames home edition, each player must be started in at least 50 percent of Yahoo! leagues to qualify. As an accountability advocate, results, whether genius or moronic, will post the following week using the scoring system listed here. Cyber-bullies, feel free to tweet your hindsight jabs here.
Local media in North Georgia recently compared Ryan to Tom Brady(notes) and Peyton Manning(notes). His “special” set of physical skills and coolness in adverse situations explain why the Falcons are atop the standings in the NFC. But against one of the league’s hottest defenses, Matty Ice will melt under the pressure. Hardly touched this season, Ryan has been sacked only 15 times, the third-lowest mark in the league. Atlanta’s offensive line has done a tremendous job protecting its cherished leader. Green Bay, however, is a different animal. Led by Skid Row groupie Clay Matthews(notes), the Packers are a dogged, pocket-collapsing bunch. Only two QBs have registered multi-TD efforts against them. They’ve also held passers to just 6.5 yards per attempt and 230 yards per game. Ryan has scorched in recent weeks connecting for 11 TD passes in his past five contests. This week, though, his fiery hand will be extinguished.
Fearless Forecast: 19-34, 217 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions, 12 fantasy points
Unfortunately for the Oompa Loompa, no chocolate rivers flow through the new Meadowlands. Outside Week 3 against Chris Johnson and last week versus LeSean McCoy(notes), the Giants have dominated the trenches. On the season, they’ve yielded 3.9 yards per carry, 111.2 total yards per game and six scores to rushers, equal to the fifth-fewest fantasy points. MJD’s burrowing nature is generally problematic for most defenses. But unless David Garrard(notes), minus top weapon Mike Sims-Walker(notes), can keep the G-Men honest, reinforcements will creep regularly into the box in an attempt to stuff the run. More importantly, the Jags defense must rise to the occasion. In Jacksonville’s four losses, the tree-trunked back has averaged just 80.8 total yards per game with one touchdown. MoJo has been on a tear over the past three weeks, eclipsing the century mark in each game. But this week against an aggressive Giants defense, the candyman won’t.
Fearless Forecast: 20 carries, 78 rushing yards, 2 receptions, 15 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9 fantasy points
Though few would ever recognize it, Moreno has performed at an RB1 level this season. In seven games, he’s quietly averaged 14.5 points per week in standard formats, the ninth-best line at his position. It’s easy to overlook the second-year back’s valuable contributions. Denver’s pass-first system has launched Kyle Orton(notes) and Brandon Lloyd(notes) into the statistical stratosphere. Expect the aerial tandem to be the point of emphasis in Josh McDaniels’ game-plan this week. Due to the Rams’ stiffness up front, the Broncos will bombard their opponent. Rushers have performed 12-percent below the league average against St. Louis this season. RB runs versus the Rams have also gone for zero or negative yards 20.4-percent of the time, the sixth-best tally in the NFC. St. Louis is exploitable on the peripheries, especially in the short-field. Backs have reeled in 5.7 receptions per game against it. That vulnerability could lead Moreno to excellent totals in PPR leagues. However, he could disappoint in standard leagues. Saddle another horse.
Fearless Forecast: 11 carries, 46 rushing yards, 5 receptions, 33 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 7 fantasy points
For Cincinnati’s surprisingly passive side of its wideout Reality Show, it’s been a season filled with high ratings. At an age when most receivers are scouting out golf-friendly retirement communities, Owens continues to rack prime-worthy numbers. His 13.8 points per week output ranks behind only Brandon Lloyd and Roddy White(notes). But last year’s unanimous choice for MVT (Most Valueless Turkey) could be basted by Darrelle Revis(notes) and Antonio Cromartie(notes). According to Rex Ryan, the Jets’ dynamic coverage duo will split time blanketing Owens, though Revis, who T.O. deemed “an average corner,” will likely take on the lion’s share. Since The Island reopened for business in Week 8, vacationing receivers have been lost at sea. During that span, No. 1 targets, including Calvin Johnson(notes), Andre Johnson(notes) and Greg Jennings(notes), have averaged a lowly 3.3 receptions and 33.5 yards per game against the Jets. Due to the pair’s restrictive coverage, tight ends and slot receivers have had seen an increased workload versus New York. Jermaine Gresham(notes) and Jordan Shipley’s(notes) roles could expand this week. Owens’ revival has been nothing short of spectacular, but, this week, his feathers get plucked. Avoid the leftovers.
Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 58 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 5 fantasy points
This week, Philadelphia’s miggity-miggity-miggity Mac Daddy won’t make you “Jump, Jump!” Behind the bazooka-arm of Michael Vick(notes), the Eagles have assaulted secondaries at will in recent weeks. As a result, DeSean Jackson(notes) and Maclin have each delivered a string of devastating performances. Over his past five games, the Mizzou product has eclipsed 12 points or more in standard leagues three times, including a nine-catch, 120-yard effort against the rival Giants in Week 11. Blessed with blinding speed, he is one of the game’s rising stars. However, Chicago is no pushover defensively. Ferocious versus the pass, the Bears have given up a league low 6.0 yards per attempt and the third-fewest 20-yard pass plays. More discouraging, only four receivers have surpassed the 75-yard mark against the Midway Monsters this year. Vick’s downfield efficiency has been extraordinary, but the Bears’ relentless pass rush and suffocating Cover 2 will sap explosive pass plays, and Maclin’s Week 12 value.
Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 46 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 4 fantasy points
Ward has slipped into a smelly funk since Week 8. Over that forgettable four-game stretch, he’s caught a useless nine passes for 53 yards with one touchdown, and one concussion. Evident in the veteran’s sharp decline in targets, Mike Wallace(notes) has become the apple of Ben Roethlisberger’s(notes) eye. Expect that trend to continue. The Bills are undoubtedly one of the league’s softest defenses, particularly up the middle. Due to their interior struggles, Bruce Arians will likely run Rashard Mendenhall(notes) ragged. When facing the Bills, other teams have employed a similar strategy with considerable success. Because of this conservative approach, only three wideouts have reached 80-yards in a game against the Bills this year. Obviously, Big Ben will take a few shots downfield. However, Wallace, not Ward, will be his weapon of choice. It appears the cagey warhorse, who ranks alongside David Gettis(notes) and Randy Moss(notes) in points per game among WRs (No. 52), is slowly inching his way toward the glue factory. At this point, he’s almost completely untrustworthy, even in PPR formats.
Fearless Forecast: 4 receptions, 28 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 2 fantasy points
Other WR alternatives: Mario Manningham(notes) (vs. Jac), Sidney Rice(notes) (at Wash), Danny Woodhead (at Det), Nate Burleson(notes) (vs. NE), James Jones(notes) (at Atl), Ben Obomanu(notes) (vs. KC), Derek Hagan(notes) (vs. Jac)
Other potential Week 12 Lames: Peyton Manning (vs. SD), Ahmad Bradshaw(notes) (vs. Jac), LeSean McCoy (at Chi), Matt Forte(notes) (vs. Phi), Malcom Floyd(notes) (at Ind), Brandon Marshall(notes) (at Oak), Chad Ochocinco(notes) (at NYJ)
Finally this week, the Noise would like to give thanks to Twitter leaguemate Cary – Knox-su-cow! owner and FantasyFootballSoup.com proprietor – who lost to Spring Break VD by a hefty sum in Week 9. A true man of his word, Cary repaid his debt with two shots of holiday cheer. Bet against the Noise and your esophagus will get burned. Witness below: