2013 Watch List #3

2012 fantasy football watch listWeek 3 finishes up tonight with a big AFC rivalry as OAK travels to DEN to take on Manning and that passing attack. It was a wacky week as we saw a number of upsets including SF and GB, while CLE, under Brian Hoyer and defeated MIN. Let’s not forget the Giants going 0-3 being waxed by CAR 38-0. Ouch! So much for Emily Manning and company. Enter the BYE weeks start in week 4 and if you drafted like many do without consideration for back ups at some position now is the time to start looking to fill those voids.

QUARTERBACKS
Geno Smith NYJ 16-29-331-2, 4-14-1: Smith could be a spot start as we head into BYE weeks depending on opponant. He put up career best numbers vs BUF and looks to have another good matchup vs TEN in week 4.

Brian Hoyer CLE 30-54-321-3: Got to give the kid some credit posting 300+ in his first game, but CLE didn’t have a running game to speak of attempting 54 passes! With no positive contribution on the ground, don’t be surprised to see 40-50 passing attempts moving forward.

RUNNING BACKS
LeGarrette Blount NEP 14-65/Brandon Bolden NEP 3-51, (6)5-49: With Ridley continuing to lose time and carries, Blount and Bolden combined for 116 yards on the ground. Logic dictates it will be Bolden who is the more versitile RB in the backfield.

Jonathan Franklin GBP 13-103-1, (3)3-27: He won’t be noted for the offense he contributed to the Packers, but the fumble that caused cost GB the name. He looked better running the ball than Starks did, faster and more ellusive. Numbers might be a bit skewed thanks in part to a 51 yard run. Bye in week 4, watch injuries to Lacy and Starks.

Isaiah Pead STL 7-21, 11(9)-61: Richardson lasted a single play as he reinjured his foot, which opened the door for Pead. While he wasn’t impressive on the ground he did contribute to the passing game. This week STL plays SF, watch Richardson’s situation, but Pead has the edge to take the majority of the snaps.

Jacquizz Rodgers ATL 18-86, (3)2-17: Mentioned him in Watch List #2 after Steven Jackson went down last week, but Rodgers posted a ground best 86 yards. Good chance Jackson misses week 4 providing Rodgers another start vs NEP.

Fred Jackson BUF 7-72, (5)4-37: Spiller left the game with a knee injury and Jackson took over backfield duties and led the team in rushing. BUF faces BAL next week, but watch the status of Spiller, which could make Jackson a flex start.

Bilal Powell NYJ 27-149, 2-9: Powell was another RB mentioned in the week 2 Watch List. he put in his best performance rushing for 149, averaging 5.5 YPC. Could be in line for a majority of the work next week at TEN.

Notables: Jason Snelling ATL 11-53, (5)4-58-1.

WIDE RECEIVERS
Donnie Avery KC (7)7-141: While the KC offensive with Smith isn’t impressive, he has been effective in the yardage department. This week it was Avery exploding for 141 yards and catching everything that came his way. With all the underneath routes Avery could play a bigger role.

Mike Williams TB (9)5-65: Not flashy, but the injury to Jackson could see an increase in production. Still getting a fair amount of targets from Freeman. Might be worth watching the VJ injury.

Josh Gordon CLE (19)10-146-1: Big game coming off a 2-game suspension for Gordon, who was targeted an amazing 19 times on Sunday. This with Brian Hoyer at QB and 54 pass attempts. Matchup seem favorable for CLE the next few weeks. He could be a viable WR2 or flex option in your team.

Notables: Jason Avant PHI (8)5-87-1, Ted Ginn CAR (4)3-71-1,  Kendall Wright TEN (6)6-71, Devone Best CLE (10)7-67.

2011 Top 10 WR Rankings (Early)

This is the second in a series of lists I have been working on as we race towards April 6 and the court ruling by a judge for the players or the owners over the CBA. This list, as with many of my off-season activities could be for not if their silence continues to speak volumes and the owners potentially lock out the players.

This week I take a look at the top ten wide receivers for the upcoming season. Just like the QB position I looked at their 2010 statistics, ranking them based on total fantasy points, yards, receptions, TDs, rating and their strength of schedule for 2011 based off 2010 records (courtesy of ESPN).

I assume we will see Russ Bliss over at Fantasy Football Starters kick out his early top ten list at the wide receiver position as well. It will be interesting to see how they compare and differ.

WR
White, Roddy: needs some help opposite of him, but this kid can do it all, run, catch and score.
Jennings, Greg: big season in 2010, should only improve this year, but could see Rodgers spread the ball more.
Fitzgerald, Larry: the QB situation is questionable, but Fitz is the complete package, should quietly have a solid year.
Wayne, Reggie: injuries in 2010 saw Wayne excel (again!), more health at the WR position, but Reggie gets his share.
Johnson, Andre: big game player, should only improve with Schaub and be a top WR selected.
Johnson, Calvin: Megatron should get a performance boost with a healthy QB and running game.
Bowe,  Dwayne: don’t think he can repeat his 2010 performance, he is the #1 in KC, but didn’t catch 54% of balls his direction.
Nicks, Hakeem: injuries in 2010 set him back, but is a favorite for Manning, look for a good follow up season.
Wallace, Mike: good rapport with Big Ben, put a full season in and Wallace increases his targets/receptions.
Lloyd, Brandon: a flash in the pan, but could crack the top ten, QB controversy in Denver?

Some might question the list I have put together. Others will be surprised not to see either DeSean Jackson or Jeremy Maclin on the list. Both WRs will have good years if Vick remains healthy. I believe Steve Johnson and Mike Williams (TB) need to prove 2010 was not a fluke, both should improve on their performances this season as well. Finally, Austin Miles was beset by the injury to Romo, with a healthy QB I think Miles has a shot for the top ten.

Larry Fitzgerald might come as a surprise at #3 based solely on the lack of a consistent QB in the desert for the Cardinals. I am hedging my bet that Arizona signs a proven veteran, which can only lead to good numbers for Fitzgerald. Missing from the list, Anquan Boldin who didn’t make a big impact in Baltimore his first year, but after a year with Flacco, they could gel a bit more and see a slight increase.

Another missing “star” is Marques Colston. One would believe this kid should be all pro with Drew Brees at QB, but last year Colston struggled. He did have one stretch of 7 games, but owners were frustrated with him all season. He has proven to be consistent over the years, but I don’t believe he is a top ten WR.

Finally, Santana Moss, no longer a youngster at 31 years old and 10 years in the NFL. He continues to put up solid numbers, even in a difficult year for the Redskins. Best thing that could happen to Moss is a change of venue to boost his numbers and production.