Each week the Noise highlights 10 somewhat un-obvious names who he believes are destined to
implode leave egg on his face. To qualify, each player must be started in at least 50 percent of Yahoo leagues. Speaking as an accountability advocate, I will post results, whether genius or moronic, the following week using the scoring system shown here. If you're a member of TEAM HUEVOS, reveal your Week 12 Lames in the comments section below.
Robert Griffin III, Was, QB (66-percent started)
Matchup: vs. SF
Disagreements, subtle public jabs and inconsistent play – Washington is about as functional as a government-run website. Just a couple months ago, optimism was brimming in the nation's capital. Cleared for takeoff by team doctors, RGIII beat the expected timetable and looked poised to lead a Redskins team to its second-consecutive playoff appearance. However, rust accumulated during his long layoff created mechanical flaws in his delivery. It also created an overwhelming sense of timidity. Barely resembling the unstoppable read-option Superman of 2012, the sophomore passer rarely ran, missed targets badly and generally underwhelmed for fantasy purposes. He's cleaned up in garbage time, particularly against meek opponents, but it's unlikely he'll have that luxury this week. Carlos Rogers and company have done an excellent job preventing explosive pass plays this season. They've allowed just 6.43 yards per attempt, 11 passing touchdowns and 235.5 passing yards per game to QBs. With the exception of Jake Locker, they've also held dual-threat QBs in check, evident in the sour lines posted by Russell Wilson (142-1-33), Andrew Luck (164-0-24-1) and Cam Newton (169-0-1-17). If RGIII stumbles out of the gate, as usual (67.6 first quarter QB rating), don't count on him smelling like a rose late.
Fearless Forecast: 242 passing yards, 1 passing touchdown, 2 interceptions, 19 rushing yards, 16.0 fantasy points
Chris Johnson, Ten, RB (84-percent)
Matchup: at Oak
On again. Off again. On again. Off again. That's the story of Johnson. Under the prime-time lights, the rusher's CJ2K's persona made a cameo … for a half. On his first eight carries against the Colts, Johnson sprinted through tight spaces, found open-field and left defenders in the dust, totaling 70 yards and a pair of scores. However, after halftime, CJ2Lame reared his ugly head, logging 16 yards on nine carries. His fantasy day still ranked top-10, but the hold/cold nature of his game is maddening to watch. This week, prepare to be overtly frustrated. A laughing stock against the run over the past dozen seasons, the Raiders have finally rectified their issues, for the most part, in the trenches under Dennis Allen. On the year they've surrendered just 3.76 yards per carry to RBs. More impressive, Andre Brown is the only rusher to cross the 90-yard threshold against them. Given the rowdy road environment and Johnson's complete unreliability, he should ride the pine if you have viable alternatives (e.g. Zac Stacy, Rashad Jennings or Pierre Thomas).
Fearless Forecast: 14 carries, 58 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 17 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.7 fantasy points
Bobby Rainey, TB, RB (38-percent)
Matchup: at Det
Yes I realize he doesn't meet the 50-percent start requirement, but I feel a moral obligation to tell the fantasy masses to SLOW YOUR ROLL over the Tampa upstart. Admittedly, he looked spectacular last week against a disheveled Atlanta frontline. He displayed eagle-eye vision, marked elusiveness and burst through the hole operating as Tampa's bellcow. On 32 touches, he finished with an absurd 167 total yards and a TD hat-trick. No question, the Browns castoff, who improbably couldn't supplant Willis McGahee, Chris Ogbonnaya or Fozzy Whittaker on the Cleveland depth-chart, will continue to tote the load, but don't expect the Bucs to make it Rainey in Detroit. Since Week 7, the Lions have been downright ferocious defending the run. No team has allowed fewer yards or fantasy points to the RB position. Shutting down Matt Forte, Le'Veon Bell and Gio Bernard during that stretch, the Lions surrendered just 2.24 yards per carry and 80.5 total yards per game to RBs. That's it. Rainey's Week 11 was magical, but, folks, he's no David Blaine.
Fearless Forecast: 21 carries, 65 rushing yards, 2 receptions, 7 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 8.7 fantasy points
Antonio Brown, Pit, WR (83-percent)
Matchup: at Cle
With Mike Wallace sloughing it on South Beach, Brown has developed into a top-flight fantasy option. Targeted 10.6 times per game, the sixth-highest mark among WRs, he's become an irreplaceable figure in standard and PPR leagues, hauling in 7.4 receptions for 95.2 yards per game. He's also cut rug in the end-zone five times. Normally he's must-start material, but this week against Joe Haden and the Browns, he's no sure-fire lock. Haden packs vise grips, a near shutdown corner similar to Tampa's Darrelle Revis. Notable names Calvin Johnson, Dwayne Bowe, A.J. Green and the aforementioned Wallace all underwhelmed against him. Overall, he's yielded a 52.3 catch rate to his assignments, limiting them to a lowly 9.3 yards per catch. Brown has a stellar track-record against Cleveland, but working mostly as the No. 2 previously, he only occasionally lined up against Haden. On the road, don't bank on top-12 or maybe even top-24 numbers.
Fearless Forecast: 4 receptions, 35 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 6.5 fantasy points
Wes Welker, Den, WR
Matchup: at NE
Never, ever rub the Hoodie the wrong way. According to some reports, the terms in which Welker left New England weren't exactly the friendliest. Well-publicized drops led many to believe his play was in decline, including those within the Patriots organization. As a result, he, similar to current teammate Peyton Manning, packed up and headed out West, determined to breathe new life in his alleged fading career. And he did exactly that. Working as No. 18's greaseman underneath, he's reeled in five or more receptions in a game five times and averaged 11.9 points per game in standard settings, good for WR1 status in 12-team leagues. Welker, assuming he passes post-concussion protocol, will be highly motivated to perform and the Patriots secondary is decimated by injuries (Alfonzo Dennard (OUT), Aqib Talib (major question mark)), but you know Bill Belichick will skew schemes in an attempt to contain Welker. Against slot receivers this season, New England has allowed a mediocre 52.5 yards per game. He's indispensable in PPR, but off his third sub-10 point fantasy effort in four games, Welker could struggle in standard settings, again provided he plays.
Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 58 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.5 fantasy points
BONUS WEEK 12 LAMES
TEAM HUEVOS PICKS OF THE WEEK
Each week one fortunate guest prognosticator will have a chance to silence the Noise. Following the rules stated above, participants are asked to submit their "Lames" (1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 D/ST) by midnight PT Wednesdays via Twitter @YahooNoise. How large are your stones?
— bryce ernsberger (@bernsberger38) November 21, 2013
Reader Record: 38-38
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