Here’s more stuff from the last couple days, hope these questions and answers give you that last little point you need to win your match-ups this week!
Stan from San Fran writes, “Papa, I think I want to start Forte and Westbrook at RB this weekend, Devin Hester, Greg Jennings, and Mr. Marshall at WR, but I have some other options, would you go with those guys or trade them for someone on my bench: Mendenhall, Felix Jones, Hakeem Nicks, Kevin Walter, or Pierre Garcon – I have to start 2 RBs and 3 WRs – thanks! I think Walter is intriguing this week, what do you think?”
I think Forte could find it really tough sledding against the Cardinals this week, but Mendenhall also goes up against a very tough run defense, and Felix Jones is still just a 6-10 carry guy, so yeah, Forte and Westbrook look like your best options – tough match-ups though.
I like your receiver options, definitely with you – but check and make sure that Hester is actually playing this sunday before you make that pick – he hasn’t practiced this week and I want to say he’s looking more questionable than originally thought – if he’s out, I’d roll with Nicks and the other two guys.
As for Walter, that’s something to think about, definitely, and maybe not as much his good match-up but the fact that Owen Daniels and his 10 or so targets are game isn’t there for the rest of the year. BUt the Colts defense isn’t just the starters, it’s a scheme and an idea, and they’ve had lots of players go through there and succeed in that scheme. Still, you’re right, Walter is intriguing for sure.
And Receivers are tough, but I probably wouldn’t play him this week against the Colts. You have Marshall who has a good match-up, nicks who has a good match-up, Hester who has a good match-up, and Jennings who is a stud against a pretty bad Bucs defense. Walter is going against a Colts team minus 3 starters, sure, but without two of those guys for the first few weeks, they were still a great pass defense. I’d stick with your originals – but you’re right, Walter has some upside.
Jason 85 writes his first novel, “Papa, So this is my first time coming to you for advice, but I went 0-3 last week and looking for other advice than my regulars because I NEED TO BOUNCE BACK!! I apologize if this is overwhelming and I’m gonna warn you, I may send you some more emails…
First, I need 2 running backs: Brandon Jacobs vs SD, Ronnie Brown vs NE, Barber vs PHI, Hightower vs CHI — I like: Jacobs and Hightower
B. I need 2 RB/2 WR/1 FLEX: Crabtree/Boldin/Manningham/Malcom Floyd/Kevin Walter —— Sproles/Tomlinson/Maroney — I like: Crabtree/Tomlinson/Maroney, thinking of Floyd/Walter/or Sproles for the rest, I dont think boldin nor manningham will perform as needed this week.
C. I need 2 running backs: Chris Johnson vs. SF, Bradshaw vs SD, Westbrook vs DAL, McCoy vs DAL, Stewart vs. NO — I like: Johnson and Bradshaw
Hope I’m not overdoing it lol. I really need that bounce back. THANKS A MIL!”
Jason, haha, by all means, send more questions if you got ’em. Hopefully I can get you some advice that helps you get some wins this weekend.
A- I would start Brandon Jacobs and Ronnie Brown. Brown hasn’t had a big game in the last couple weeks, and I think he’s a great running back. The Dolphins should rely on him in that game. If you’re strongly against Brown, I think it’s tough to go with Hightower over Barber- Marion hasn’t rushed for over 3.6 yards per carry in his last 4 games, has been all but removed from the passing game where he’s normally a good receiver, and I’m just not sure what you’ll get from him – but at least he’s a touchdown threat and the Eagles don’t have a great run-defense. At least Hightower will be involved in the passing game, but Beanie Wells is teh better answer, and honestly I don’t see the Cardinals carrying the ball more than 20 times. Maybe Tim gets 6-10 carries. That’s not enough for me to start him.
B- I would go with Crabtree/Manningham Tomlinson/Maroney and it’s almost a coin toss, but Sproles big play ability gets the nod as the flex. I would go with Mannignham because I’m pretty sure he’s healthy, he claimed he could have played last week, and the Chargers don’t do a good job stopping the pass, I think the Giants throw the ball well this week. Sproles nor Tomlinson have a good match-up, but I still think they are your better options. The Giants aren’t likely to give up a ton of yardage to Malcom Floyd, but I can see going with him if Manningham’s status changes to doubtful or if you find out he’s not playing.
C- I like Johnson and Bradshaw as well. You can’t sit Johnson, he’s too good, and Bradshaw has a great match-up and is probably going to be used a lot against a Chargers team that should struggle to stop the speedy option in New York. Good luck this weekend, my man, hopefully you can gets a few wins!
Brian Henderson asks, “Is it to early to give up on Slaton?? I have been offered Rashard Mendenhall for Slaton. Should I do this? Thanks in advance for your time.”
Okay, so looking into this situation has been interesting. Here’s what I got on each guy.
Steve Slaton – Obviously one of the more explosive backs in the league, his burst is such that he scores touchdowns – most of his fantasy points have come from touchdowns and in the passing game – sound likes Reggie Bush – but Slaton is the better actual running back, and probably not as fast as Reggie – but both will continue to score touchdowns when given chances. That being said, Slaton hasn’t rushed for 100 yards yet this year (his highest three games are 76, 67, and 65 yards and the next best game is a 43 yard rushing day). But he also has 29 catches on 39 targets, 300+ yards receiving, and 3 receiving touchdowns). With Owen Daniels gone, it’s hard to think that Houston would just get rid of a huge chunk of their big plays and receiving prowess because he fumbled a few times to start the season, but Gary Kubiak did coach under Mike Shanahan – (you know that guy as the former running back killer, can use anyone and will extraordinaire) so you never know. Still, Daniels was a 10 target a game guy – those have to go somewhere, right? And I’m not so sure Ryan Moats is the 120+ yard 3 touchdown running back he was last week – they were playing the Bills, and the Texans did run the ball more than they had all season – I have a feeling Slaton would have gone for 150+ in that situation – but there’s obviously questions there. But Slaton has a pretty favorable rushing schedule going forward, not the best run D’s on the Texans’ schedule.
Rashard Mendenhall – On the upside, he is explosive, fast, powerful, has blocked very well and while he hasn’t been used often, he’s proven that he has very good hands (8 catches in 9 targets). He proven to be by far the more effective running back in PIttsburgh, and his upside is great. He’s also scored 4 touchdowns in the last 4 games. But look at his schedule, Broncos, Ravens twice, Bengals, Packers – and in Week 17 (if your league goes that far) he plays Miami – that’s 6 games against Top 10 run defenses (the Packers and Ravens during the playoffs – however, I’m not completely sold on Green Bay being some great run defense, they are very up and down). The Steelers haven’t run the ball very much, but you’d think they’d commit more to the run when the weather starts to rear it’s rainy, cold, head. I think Mendenhall could get 100+ yards with the benefit of 20 carries against any team in the league, but trading for him obviously means you are expecting the Steelers to run more, because besides his 1 big start against San Diego (165 yards) he’s really averaged just around 70 yards per game, but not for lack of yards per carry, he just hasn’t gotten the touches.
After everything, I think I’d stick with Steve – I just think it’s too early to give up on him. And this is coming from a guy that loves Rashard Mendenhall’s game – I’ve always thought he’d be the best running back from his class (Chris Johnson is making a case though, ha). I just think the Steelers aren’t going to stop throwing the ball too much, it’s their weakness right now – funny, their weakness is their own doing – but this is often the case – crazy life lesson… ha. Slaton is a big time risk right now, but depending on your roster, probably one worth taking – he proved to be a great second half runner last season, has easy run defenses in his future, and just lost a big time player in the offense that should give him more touches.
That’s my take. Good luck Brian.