2012 Watch List #11

2012 fantasy football watch listBy week 11 you should have a very good idea as to your chance to make the playoffs. For me, my seasons are over. Injuries, again this year, have keyed my failure. Even with advanced planning during the draft to select backups and keep a close eye on the waiver wire.

As we have seen in years past when teams have secured a playoff spot before the end of the year, some big name players might not get the sort of playing time you, as a fantasy owner expect. So while many owners headed to the post season are banking on a big playoff run, you might have to dial back your expectations and look to make a few moves in order to assure your run to the championship.

Much like last week we have another round of injuries that could have more players being picked up this week off the wire. Injuries include Willis McGahee (knee), Julio Jones (ankle), Dennis Pitta (concussion), LeSean McCoy (concussion), Donnie Avery (concussion), Issac Redman (concussion), Dwayne Bowe (concussion), Rob Gronkowski (broken forearm) and Blaine Gabbert (Elbow).

With that said, here is the watch list as we go into week 11 of the NFL.

QUARTERBACK
Chad Henne MIA 16-33-354-4
Henne had played in the last 2 games (in relief) for JAX, but put up career numbers yesterday in the overtime loss to HOU. He looked outstanding in relief of Gabbert who left with injury. Hard to say what happens if Gabbert is healthy in week 12 when JAX plays TEN. Gabbert could post another good day in week 12 if given the start.

Other notables: None

RUNNING BACK (number in (#) represent targets)
Beanie Wells ARI
The Cardinals running game has been horrid recently and Wells coming back in week 12 could be what they need. Keep an eye on the news surrounding Wells this week. His schedule isn’t great for the playoffs, so taper expectations.

Bryce Brown PHL 5-35
Brown might have just gained value after week 11 with the concussion to LeSean McCoy. He averaged 7 YPC on 5 carries and totaled 35 yards. If McCoy misses time, Brown will be the starter. Week 12 has PHL playing CAR.

Ronnie Hillman DEN 12-43, (2)2-16/Lance Ball DEN 6-35, (3)3-21
McGahee left the game as a precaution (knee) in the second quarter with Hillman and Ball seeing increased action while splitting time. It remains to be seen how DEN will use these RBs if McGahee misses time. Both would be worth a flex start vs KC in week 11.

Bilal Powell NYJ 11-42-2, (2)2-18
Powell posted a career high, 11 carries vs STL rushing for 42 yards and 2 TDs in the 4th quarter. Powell has the opportunity to overshadow Greene, who has largely been unimpressive this year. Look for Powell to spell Greene and try to gain a larger share of the workload as the season rolls on. Week 12 Powell could be considered a flex player vs NEP.

Justin Forsett HOU 7-59, (2)1-6
With HOU headed to the playoffs and Tate still injured, Forsett saw plenty of action for HOU on Sunday. He rushed 7-59 in relief of Foster. Depending on how HOU plays, Forsett could see an increased roll in order to save Foster and avoid injury. HOU plays Detroit on Thanksgiving.

Other notables: Jalen Parmele JAX 24-80, (3)3-3, James Starks GBP 25-74, (1)1-6

WIDE RECEIVER (number in (#) represent targets)
Danario Alexander SDG (11)7-96-2
A continued strong showing for the newest Charger and now seems to be on the same page as Rivers, something he hasn’t had with any WR this season. Alexander got his points in garbage time for San Diego, but fantasy owners don’t care. Alexander was targeted 11 times and hauled in 2 TDs. Good match up in week 12 vs BAL.

Justin Blackmon JAX (13)7-236-1
The rookie broke out for JAX yesterday posting career yardage with Henne at QB. Blackmon also found the endzone for only the second time this season and lead the team with 13 targets. With a reinvigorated offense, Blackmon could be a strong start next week vs TEN.

Cecil Shorts JAX (6)3-81-1
Shorts has come into his own this season, as the best WR in JAX. Shorts was overshadowed by Blackmon, but still hauled in 1 TD from Henne. In fact the offense posted great numbers with the injury to Gabbert. Viable starter in week 11 vs TEN.

Brandon Gibson STL (5)3-9-2
The stats aren’t impressive, but the fact he found the endzone twice is, which means Bradford is looking for him in the red zone. Amendola usually draws most of the attention, so Gibson could be worth a look. Next week STL playing ARI.

Other notables: Brandon Stokley (5)4-55-1, Devone Bess MIA (11)6-50-1, T.Y. Hilton (9)6-100-2

TIGHT END
Marcedes Lewis BAL
Lewis, like the rest of the offense benefited from Henne at QB. Lewis put up his best game of the year, finding the endzone twice, he had not scored since week 4. Look at Lewis only if Henne remains the starting QB.

Ben Watson CLE (8)4-47-2
Not sure why Weedon hasn’t looked to the veteran more than has this season. A sure handed TE was targeted a season high 8 times yesterday and posted his first multi-TD game of the year. At this point, his value is still low as he isn’t being used like in years past.

Other notables: Brandon Myers OAK (10)-6-55-1, Dallas Clark TBB (11)7-58-1, Garrett Graham HOU (9)8-82-2

2012 Watch List #7

2012 fantasy football watch listThe Watch List wasn’t published last week, as I was on a bye. I figured if they are good enough for NFL players, I too could slide one in there. It was another long week of of action, as we began on Thursday night. One thing we haven’t been short on this season…injuries. Key players this week Maurice Jones-Drew, Fred Davis, Shonn Greene, Ben Tate and Blaine Gabbert. To go along with the injuries, we did have a few surprise performances as well during week 7 that could have owners running to the wire.

We are now 7 weeks into the NFL and looking at the mid season point of the season. One thing I have noticed is talent starts to thin out the deeper we get into the season. During the draft, some owners (bench allowing) will draft depth in the form of sleepers. Even then some of those players could become possible drop candidates if early season injuries pop right.

With that said, here is the watch list as we go into week 8 of the NFL.

QUARTERBACK
John Skelton ARI 25-36-262-1-1
Skelton returns to the helm in Arizona, as Kolb exited stage left last week due to injury. This could be the opening Skelton needs to win the starting job for the rest of the season. Unfortunately he couldn’t put a ‘W’ on the board for the Cardinals, but was effective through the air. Arizona home to SF in week 8.

Other notables: None

RUNNING BACK (number in (#) represent targets)
LaRod Stephens-Howling ARI 20-104-1, (5)4-45
Speaking of being health, “Apostrophe” is one of the few RBs in Arizona that is healthy. Going into the game vs MIN, it was expected that Powell and Stephens-Howing would split carries, but that was not the case. The 104 yards was a career high and came against a good MIN defense. He might have won the starting job, but faces a tough task vs SF in week 7.

Rashad Jennings JAX 21-44-1, (9)7-58
Not an overly impressive game for Jennings coming in relief of MJD who left with a undetermined foot injury. He combined for 102 yards, but the 2.1 YPC isn’t good. Jennings will become the starter week 8 at Green Bay, he is a must add.
Other notables:

Jonathan Dwyer PIT 17-122
I’ve gone back and forth on Dwyer the past few weeks, but he is one of he healthy back in PIT right now. With Mendenhall and Redman still injured Dwyer finally exploded on Sunday for 122 yards (7.2 YPC)! Look for him to remain the starter in week 8 against WAS.

WIDE RECEIVER (number in (#) represent targets)
Santana Moss WAS (4)3-67-2
With the injury to Fred Davis, the wide receivers could end up playing a bigger role in the upcoming weeks. Still only 4 targets on the week, wasn’t the top targeted WR (Hankerson). Still if you are looking for a BYE week cover you might look at WAS match up and start Moss on a game by game basis. Week 8 has WAS in PIT.

Leonard Hankerson WAS (8)6-70
With Garcon still inactive, Hankerson and Moss end up being the starters for WAS. Hankerson was the top targeted WR on Sunday with 8 targets. Hankerson hasn’t been all too consistent, could be a flex option vs PIT in week 8.

Other notables: Chris Givens STL (5)3-73, Brandon Gibson STL (7)5-60, Cecil Shorts (10)4-79-1

TIGHT END
Martellus Bennett NYG (7)5-79
After a few down weeks, Bennett posted his best yardage of the year, 79 yards. Still one of the better options to own at the TE position, as he posted 70+ yards times this season along with 3 TDs. Bennett has a good match up against DAL, which he scored on back in week 1.

Other notables: Brandon Myers OAK (10)7-44, Dustin Keller (7)7-93-1

2012 Watch List #3

2012 fantasy football watch listIt’s funny how a watch list works, last week a player like Kevin Ogletree was probably one of the most picked up players after his opening season performance. Yesterday it was 1 catch for 26 yards. I am not the only one who said, told you so, but have some patience with your fantasy team. The players on this list don’t necessarily need to be picked up this week, but are players to watch in the coming weeks. Depending on the injury situation your team is in some of these players might be considered a worthwhile pick up immediately.

Some players who are free agents, might not even get a mention, for example Dante Rosario, TE in San Diego. He took advantage of Gates as a late scratch and was 4-48-3 TD, a career day for him. Look for him to fall back into fantasy irrelevance after yesterdays performance. I still subscribe to staying the course after nearly 2 weeks of football. Unless you injury ridden, no situation is too much to overcome at this point. Keep an eye on possibly acquisitions and play the best team you can, which isn’t always the easiest decision to make.

With that said, here is the watch list as we go into week 3 of the NFL.

QUARTERBACK
Russell Wilson SEA 15-20-151-1, 4-28
Wilson still not as impressive as he was in pre-season, but Wilson has been effective at QB for the Seahawks. He could be 2-0, but ends up 1-1 after 2 weeks. He posted a 112.7 QB rating on Sunday vs Dallas, but it was the rushing of Lynch that took away the opportunities for Wilson. Still, he is a worthwhile QB to own as a bench player or bye week cover.

RUNNING BACK (number in (#) represent targets)
Jackie Battle 14-69-2
It only took a game and a half, but Norv Turner might of found his true back up to injured RB, Ryan Mathews. The rushing game in San Diego has been pathetic, but Jackie Battle posted a 14-92 YPC and scored twice. This could be short lived success with Mathews due to return in week 3. If you are looking for the handcuff, Battle could be the RB to own.

Andre Brown NYG 13-73-1, (2) 2-19
With the injury to Bradshaw it was 3rd year player Brown, not Dave Wilson who picked up the slack and posted good numbers in the Giants comeback victory. He posted a 5.5 YPC and looked better than Bradshaw. If the neck injury continue, “What can Brown do for you?”

Bilal Powell NYJ 9-33, (2) 2-10
Greene departed the game with a head injury, but returned later in the game. Powell filled in, but being down in the second half the Jets had to go to the pass (unsuccessfully), which limited the number of touches Powell got. He is someone to watch as we go forward with the season.
Daryl Richardson STL 15-83, (3) 2-19
Steven Jackson came out of the game under mysterious circumstances, which then turned into a groin injury. Watch the week injury report and HC, Jeff Fisher has to say. If the injury lingers, Richardson might take over the RB1 in St. Louis. If you own Jackson, Richardson might be a wise pick up this week.

Other notables: None

WIDE RECEIVER (number in (#) represent targets)
Danny Amendola (16) 15-160-1
Amendola had a career game with 15 catches, which included 12 in the first half. His value comes more in PPR leagues, but if you are in need of a receiver, Amendola might be worth a look. Bradford has his go-to wide receiver, no reason this duo won’t continue to pile up positive numbers.

Brian Hartline MIA (12) 9-111
Hartline has seen 20 targets with Tannehill through 2 weeks and finished with 111 yards against Oakland on Sunday. Might be worth a look in PPR formats with the number of targets he is seeing, but could be a match up player only as Tannehill has struggled through 2 games.

Brandon LaFell CAR (8) 6-90
Led the Panthers in targets on Sunday, but could not find the end zone. He continues to impress and with the passing attack that Carolina has, he is a viable option. Look for big game against NYG in week 3. LaFell could benefit if Steve Smith’s knee issue continues.

Donnie Avery IND (10) 9-111
Avery has 18 targets through 2 weeks with rookie Andrew Luck at QB. Trailing as Indy will be most games, most of the year he could be a viable WR2 with concussion issues still a problem for Austin Collie. Probably a better PPR candidate than standard scoring pick up.

Other notables: Brandon Gibson STL (4) 2-53-1, Julian Edelman (6) 5-50

TIGHT END
Martellus Bennett NYG (10) 5-72-1
Another strong performance by “The Black Unicorn” in a Giants offense that is putting big points on the board and producing huge stats. You might as well get on board with Martellus, as he put up good numbers including 2 TDs in 2 weeks. With injuries and other TEs struggling, he is worth a shot.

Kyle Rudolph MIN (5) 3-35-1
Week 1 he put up modest yardage and yesterday scored a late TD including 35 yards. He is becoming a red zone option for Ponder. With Harvin and Peterson healthy, I like what I have seen in Rudolph through 2 weeks. Viable fantasy option with good upside.

Other notables: Scott Chandler BUF (4) 2-53-1, Todd Heap ARI (10) 5-72-1

2012 Watch List #2

2012 fantasy football watch listBefore I get to the 2012 Watch List #2 I need to make an early observation, based off comments I read this week. Have patience with your team, I don’t buy into the hype of a player emerging to the forefront of a week after only one game.

While that player’s performance will probably get them noticed on ESPN and the highlight reel, it will also get their name on the watch list. But does that mean I subscribe to the idea of immediately claiming that player off the wire or through free agency? No, I don’t. If any player who makes this list is available, I would pick them up only if they improved my team. I would not pick them to potentially trade them or as depth if I have to drop another player who could impact any given position.

With that said, here is the watch list as we go into week 2 of the NFL.

QUARTERBACK
Robert Griffith III (aka Bob3) 19-26-320-2 10-42
Another stellar performance by a rookie QB in his first game. Bob3 led the underdog Redskins past New Orleans, 40-32. He was 8-8 before tossing his first incomplete pass, later connecting with Garcon on an 88 yard TD. He also added 42 yards on the ground, making him a double threat on Sunday.

Other notables: Blaine Gabbert 23-39-260-2, 5-6

Russell Wilson SEA 18-34-153-1 8-20
Numbers not as strong as what we saw in the preseason, partially due to the fact he was limited on the ground by the Arizona defense. Could have made a better showing if he could have driven his team in for the winning TD when on the Arizona 4 yard line.

RUNNING BACK (number in (#) represent targets)
Alfred Morris WAS 28-96-2
The secret of the week, thanks to Shanny was Morris who the Redskins on the ground and was the best performing RB when compared to Helu and Royster. Take that for what it’s worth, when you are a RB in Washington you just don’t know what Shanny will do. Can’t argue with 28 carries, but the 3.4 YPC is a bit worrisome.

Dexter McCluster (10) 6-82
Kansas City uses McCluster like New Orleans uses Sproles. His contribution was seen in the second half as he became the go to player for Cassel. His totals could be a bit inflated due to the fact KC was trailing and trying to come back from such a deficit.

Jonathan Dwyer PIT 9-43, 2-11
With Mendenhall still sidelined, Dwyer and Redman split the carries, but it was Dwyer who looked the better options averaging 4.8 YPC. His performance could lead to a larger part of the RBBC in Pittsburgh.

Other notables: None

WIDE RECEIVER (number in (#) represent targets)
Kevin Ogletree DAL
As a WR3, he took advantage of the lack of coverage and the double teams of Bryant and Austin to be the top WR for Dallas opening night. Ogletree was targeted 14 times and caught 8-114-2 TD. Not buying the hype on him yet, he still is the third or fourth option (with a healthy Witten) in the Cowboys offense.

Stephen Hill NYJ (6) 5-89-2
Hill averaged 17.8 YPC in the rout of the Bills on Sunday. The rookie hauled in 2 TDs, both from Sanchez. A un-Jet like performance, based on the “ground and pound” strategy of Rex Ryan. Not sure if this is a new look Jets offense or just the Jets taking advantage of a soft Buffalo defense.

Jeremy Kerley NYJ (4) 4-45-1
Kerley scored twice in the game, on a 12-yard pass from Sanchez, followed by a 68-yard punt return in the second quarter. Not sure there is much fantasy value here, just a young player making the most of his opportunities. With Keller, Holmes and possibly Hill as better options Kerley might not have much fantasy impact at this time.

James Jones GBP (6) 4-81-1
Who’s hot on the Packers this week? Jones, who I suspect went undrafted in many leagues with the emergence of Jordy Nelson. Jones held without a caught the first half exploded in the second as he became Rodgers top target, hauling in 4 catches including a 10-yard TD catch. He averaged 20.3 YPC on Sunday.

Alshon Jeffery CHI (5) 3-81-1
Jeffery could be one of the more consistent players this season with the addition of Brandon Marshall to the Bears. Teams willing to double team Marshall will put the rookie in lighter coverage, which could be an advantage for Jay Cutler. He was still way behind Marshall in targets (15).

Other notables: Randall Cobb (9) 9-77, Cecil Shorts (7) 4-74-1, Andre Roberts (9) 5-54-1, Brandon Gibson (5) 4-51-1, Alderick Robinson (6) 4-52-1, Donald Jones, (7) 5-41-1

TIGHT END
Coby Fleener IND (10) 6-82
While Indy still lost their opening, the chemistry looked good between Luck and Fleener. Targeted 10 times, second to Reggie Wayne (18), Fleener made the most of his receptions including a long for 24 yard. Indy will be playing from behind much of this year, Fleener could represent a good candidate to keep your eye on.

Marcedes Lewis JAX (5) 5-52-1
Lewis looking to bounce back this year (0 TDs in 2011) started off the year strong catching ever pass that came his way on Sunday. He was Gabbert’s top target on Sunday, which rewarded him with a 1 yard TD in the second quarter. With young Gabbert at QB, Lewis could return to his 2010 form.

Other notables: Martellus Bennett (6) 4-40-1, Heath Miller PIT (7) 4-50-1