Week 8 Fantasy Lames: No amount of four-leaf clovers will help Luck in Carolina

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 Each week the Noise highlights 10 somewhat un-obvious names whom 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 (Thresholds – QB: 18 fpts, RB: 13 fpts, WR: 11 fpts, TE: 10 fpts). If you're a member of TEAM HUEVOS, reveal your Week 8 Lames in the comments section below.

[Yahoo Daily Fantasy Football: First place wins $100K in our $600K contest for Week 8]

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See Also: Week 8 Flames

Andrew Luck, Ind, QB (83 percent started, $41 in Yahoo DFS)
Matchup: at Car
Similar to King Tutt, Murphy the billy goat and Madden covers, I possess a damning "gift," the ability to curse once productive fantasy commodities no matter their level of star-power. Brandon Jacobs, Ryan Mathews, Matthew Stafford, Montee Ball – the laundry list of players I have single-handedly reduced to rubble is endless. For those that faded, congrats. For those that followed, my deepest apologies. Though he's smelled like a rose in garbage time, Luck may soon become the latest name to suffer my wrath. Just months ago I projected a historic campaign for the Colts signal-caller. However, felled by a mysterious shoulder injury and vexed by opposing defenses, he's greatly underwhelmed. His 20.7 points per game in Yahoo leagues is respectable, but it's a far cry from the galactic 50 combined scores some near-bald, hamster-brained loudmouth projected. Post-bye (Week 10) Luck, blessed with a very favorable schedule, should deliver gangbuster numbers, but until then he shouldn't be trusted, particularly this week in Carolina. The Panthers, led by carking corner Josh Norman (7.2 ypc, 46.2 catch%, 23.4 QB rating allowed), are nothing to mess with. On the year, QBs are performing 14.9 percent below the league average against them. In fact, Jameis Winston, of all people, is the only multi-TD passer they've yielded. If the recent trend continues, Luck could clean up late, but don't bet on it. His creaky mechanics and questionable decision-making are indicative of an unstable quarterback. Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs. Oak), Ryan Tannehill (at NE) and Jay Cutler (vs. Min) are sounder alternatives.  

Fearless Forecast: 22-36, 259 passing yards, 2 passing touchdowns, 3 turnovers, 24 rushing yards, 17.7 fantasy points 

Carlos Hyde, SF, RB (60 percent started, $19)
Matchup: at StL
Terrible offensive line, atrocious QB execution, laughable defense, bruised or possibly fractured foot, heavy-sweating/mouth agape head coach – uncontrollable forces are clearly working against the rusher. When healthy Hyde runs with the conviction of a ticked off rhino. He sheds tackles, plows forward for extra yardage and can catch the ball fluidly out of the backfield. Bottom line, he's a legit three-down hoss. But the grotesque environment and bum wheel are undoubtedly pinning him down. A repeat of his glorious Week 1 numbers likely won't happen the rest of this season, especially this week. St. Louis is far from an impenetrable fortress on run defense. RBs are netting 4.24 yards per carry and 149.7 total yards per game against it. However, Colin Kaepernick's gross incompetency doesn't lend much hope for Hyde. Unless the passer channels Steve Young, the ground game is bound to suffer. DT Aaron Donald, who has ccounted for 22 stops, will surely skewer a San Fran offensive line that ranks 25th in run-blocking per Football Outsiders. RB is a blood-soaked position, but the predictable stacked boxes say Hyde is more FLEX than RB2 material in Week 8. Charcandrick West (vs. Det), Charles Sims (at Atl) and Jonathan Stewart (vs. Ind) own more upside. 

Fearless Forecast: 15 carries, 61 rushing yads, 2 receptions, 9 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 8.0 fantasy points 

[Week 8 rankings: Quarterback | Running Back | Receiver | Flex | Tight End | All Positions]

Eddie Lacy, GB, RB (51 percent started, $18)
Matchup: at Den
We can only hope the big-boned Lacy went on a blind date, and hit it off, with Jenny Craig during the bye week. The beefy back, handicapped by a tender ankle, has fallen on hard times. His sharp downturn in several primary and secondary categories, including missed tackle percentage ('14: 20.7, '15: 10.4) and yards per carry (4.6, 3.9), has prompted many to call him the ultimate fantasy "bust." C.J. Anderson is also a frontrunner for the unwanted title, but because Lacy was drafted inside the top-five, and in some cases No. 1 overall, he's the odds on favorite. No surprise, his more explosive complement, James Starks, has forced Mike McCarthy to rethink Green Bay's distribution in carries. The elevated backup has displayed more short-field quicks, explosiveness and overall effectiveness compared to Lacy. In other words, whoever exhibits the "hot hand" will command touches, a frustrating unpredictable development for fantasy owners. No matter if Lacy, Starks or Ahman Green circa 2003 totes the rock, Sunday night's matchup is quite unfavorable. Denver, also fresh off the bye, has been spectacular in all facets defensively. On the year, Brandon Marshall and friends have conceded 3.58 yards per carry and 57.2 rushing yards per game to RB1s. A well-rested Lacy may soon rediscover his '14 form, but it's unlikely to happen this week. Despite the ultra-discounted DFS price ... pass.  

Fearless Forecast: 14 carries, 50 rushing yards, 2 receptions, 8 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 6.8 fantasy points 

Mike Evans, TB, WR (76 percent started, $24)
Matchup: at Atl
In fantasy, the power of assumption is highly persuasive. Many have planted both cheeks back on the Evans bandwagon after the WR's slump-busting 12-8-164-1 eruption against Washington. Did you suddenly forget how repugnant he was earlier this year? A reminder: Weeks 2-5 he ranked No. 73 among WRs in per game average. Yes, that's right, in Stedman Bailey territory. Evans and Jameis Winston obviously ironed out a few kinks during the bye week, but last Sunday's detonation was largely due to matchup. This time around, a darker, more sinister story will be penned. Quietly the Falcons have played superb pass defense. They've yielded just 6.97 pass yards per attempt on the year. As for wide receivers, only five have reached double-digits in fantasy points against Atlanta. Much of its success can be attributed to Desmond Trufant. The smothering corner has given up an impressive 45.5 catch percentage and 68.0 QB rating to his assignments. His tag-team partner, Robert Alford, has also performed admirably allowing a 52.5 catch rate. Evans' skyscraper frame is a problem for most and he'll be shifted about with Tampa down Vincent Jackson, but I anticipate Tampa to exploit Atlanta via the run and through the air in the short-field. Expect a heavy 1-2 punch of Doug Martin and Charles Sims. The WR remains an employable WR3, but a second-straight 100-yard effort probably isn't in the cards. 

Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 71 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.6 fantasy points

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Jimmy Graham, Sea, TE (88 percent started, $20)
Matchup: at Dal
Graham is like Twizzlers. Every Halloween the boring licorice candy overpopulates your trick-or-treat bag. For many of us, instead of eating them until New Year's, we find a way to deal them for a handful of something slightly more palatable, Tootsie Rolls, or in Graham's case Eric Ebron. There's nothing appetizing about the ex-Saint's 2015 fantasy campaign. Since leaving the vertical fruits of New Orleans, he's become an afterthought in a largely conservative and uncreative Seattle offense. He's shown glimpses of his former Pro Bowl self (e.g. Week 6 vs. Carolina), but he's on pace for just 7.1 fantasy points per game, a 2.9 ppg reduction from his somewhat disappointing 2014. OC Darrell Bevell can't seem to figure out how to properly use Graham, much like Marshawn Lynch in goal-line situations during the Super Bowl. It's shouldn't be advanced calculus. Considering the TE is 6-foot-6, 260-pounds, a simple seam route, whether 10 or 20 yards, should do. Yes, Seattle's limpid offensive line is partially to blame – Russell Wilson has been placed under duress on a league-high 47.5 percent of his dropbacks – but one would think easy, high-percentage throws to Frankenstein would be a common-sense solution. Don't expect a dramatic turnaround this week. Thanks in large part to LB Sean Lee, Dallas has defended the TE extraordinarily well. No plus-sized target, Rob Gronkowski included, has scored eight fantasy points against the 'Boys. Overall, they've yielded just 36.3 yards per game to tight ends. Sadly, for Graham, his once elite TE1 production will stay out to sea. 

Fearless Forecast: 3 receptions, 36 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 5.1 fantasy points

BONUS WEEK 8 LAMES

#TEAMHUEVOS 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 "Flames" (1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 D/ST) by midnight PT Tuesdays via Twitter @YahooNoise. How large are your stones?

Reader Record: 28-21

Want to bull rush Brad? Find him on Twitter. Also, check out the Yahoo! Fantasy and Rotoworld crew every Tuesday-Thursday on 'Fantasy Football Live' starting at 6:30 PM ET on NBC Sports Network (Find channel here).

 

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