|Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Win By Less Than a FOOT||Panic Mode in Full Effect, Minutemen are Struggling||Patriots Survive Gritty Challenge From Jets||Smart Era Gets Off to a Good Start with Win over T’wolves|
Every Wednesday, I will talk about potential fantasy football sleepers for each matchup taking place. I will go game-by-game and pick out one or two players who can most likely be found in your league’s free agent pool and explain why they can be of use to you that week.
If you didn’t start the playoffs last week, then you are now in the hunt for a championship this week. It is now more important than ever to find those diamonds in the rough that will push your team over the edge each and every single week. Enough chit chat, let’s get to it.
Collie has found the endzone in two straight games and the Jaguars defense is allowing over 230 pass yds per game.
Although he is not putting up great numbers, Garrard is much better at home than on the road (9 TD, 4 INT). The Colts find a way to win every week, but they are giving up a healthy amount of passing yds doing it. Since Week 9, the Colts have allowed 281 pass yds to QB’s.
Don’t forget, the Colts did let Brandon Marshall catch 21 passes last Sunday, so they clearly have coverage problems.
The Saints will be scoring a lot of points as usual, so Dallas will have to keep up with their pace. Obviously Miles Austin is the receiver you want in Dallas, but Crayton will be getting plenty of looks against a Saints team that has allowed back-to-back 300 yd games to QB’s. By the way, those QB’s were Jason Campbell and Chris Redman.
The Browns ran the ball 37 times last week in their win over the Steelers and Jennings led the team with 20 carries. The Browns will probably stick to their run-heavy ways against the Chiefs, who don’t have a good passing game. Instead, Kansas City should stick to their best player, RB Jamaal Charles.
Cleveland will also hand it off all day and Jennings is a good bet to carry 20+ times again. The Chiefs have given up 200+ rush yds in back-to-back games, so grab Jennings today if you can.
OK, so he didn’t come through last week, but I have no problem recommending him again this week. Atlanta will have no chance at moving the ball against the NFL’s best pass defense, so the Jets should be controlling the clock for the whole game.
Thomas Jones will get 20-25 carries, but Greene will have a shot at 10 touches. The Falcons are more well known for their terrible pass defense (30th in league), but they also give up 4.3 yds per carry.
Titans are giving up an average of just 289 total yds in each of their last four home games. Miami QB Chad Henne has 3 TD and 5 INT in six road games this season. This sounds like a simple decision, right?
The Rams have allowed their QB to be sacked 11 times in their last four games and Rams QB’s have thrown nine interceptions in that time. The Texans have become heat-seeking missiles on opposing QB’s lately, racking up nine sacks in their last three games. St. Louis is averaging less than 12 points per game in their last four as well.
Larry Fitzgerald is cleared to play, but if he is still hampered by his sprained knee, the Doucet could see more action. Doucet actually led the Cardinals in receiving in their loss to San Francisco last Monday with 41 yds.
Plus, this is Detroit we are talking about. They literally have the worst pass defense in football, so anybody can shine against them.
Rookie receiver Jeremy Maclin will miss 1-2 weeks with a foot injury, and Brown is most likely to take Maclin’s share of targets. The Eagles should throw it well against the 49ers, who give up 243 pass yds per game.
There has also been talk of the Eagles activating WR Kevin Curtis for this week’s game, but since he is recovering from knee surgery, it isn’t realistic for him to make an impact on his first game back.
As it turns out, Sammy Morris wasn’t the one taking the most carries from Laurence Maroney. Faulk carried 10 times last week against the Panthers and he even found the endzone for the second straight game.
Running against the Panthers was great, now Faulk gets to run against the league’s worst run defense that allows 170 rush yds per game. Look for another 10+ carries from Faulk in addition to his 3-4 receptions.
McGahee has scored 4 TD in his last three games and now he will run against Chicago’s pathetic run defense this week. The Bears have allowed 135+ rush yds in each of their last four games and Jay Cutler and Co. are 1-5 on the road this season.
Baltimore ran the ball 40 times last week against the Lions and McGahee ran it 12 times (Ray Rice ran it 13 times) and scored 2 TD. I can’t see any reason why the Ravens would change their strategy against a rush defense that is just as bad as Detroit’s.
Prater’s problem this season is that he doesn’t get a lot of field goal opportunities against good teams. Well, the Oakland Raiders are not a good team. Prater could be the week’s bets kicker when Denver faces the Raiders.
The Raiders won’t move the ball at all, especially since QB Bruce Gradkowski has ruled himself out for this week’s game. The points will be scored at will for Denver, giving Prater a nice stat line for the day. Prater was also 3/3 on field goals in their fist meeting this season.
Floyd has consistently put together 3+ receptions in five straight games. Given WR Vincent Jackson’s inconsistency this season, Floyd is a breakout candidate at any time.
The Bengals will be a tough game for San Diego. Cincinnati will pound away with Cedric Benson and it will work because the Chargers allow 4.3 ypc. The Chargers have plenty of weapons at their disposal, but Floyd could break one off for a huge gain.
Hey, his numbers at first glance look terrible, but Freeman’s best games have come on the road this season with games of 250 and 321 pass yds in Weeks 12 & 13 respectively.
Will Freeman be mistake free this week? No way! I still think he will gain a lot of yards though, and Seattle’s defense is giving up an average of 306 pass yds over the last five weeks.
We all know by now that Pittsburgh is in shambles this season. In addition to Aaron Rodgers, Greg Jennings, and Donald Driver, tight end Jermichael Finley is a great play this week.
Finley has been great since returning from a knee injury four weeks ago and has caught 22 passes for 228 yds in his last four games. He has 149 yds and 2 TD in his last two games and since the Packers give up sacks like crazy, QB Aaron Rodgers is always looking for the short pass to Finley.
This game looks to be a blowout with the Vikings defense taking control of this one from the start against Matt Moore and the Panthers.
Combining Carolina’s terrible rush defense (137 yds per game) with the sheer amount of garbage time to be had, Chester Taylor could be in line for 7-8 carries and 4-5 receptions in this one.
Jason Campbell has stepped up his game in recent weeks with 7 TD and 3 INT in his last three games.
When the teams first met in Week 1, the Giants won 23-17, but things have changed since then as the Giants’ defense has broken down and has allowed an average of 293 pass yds in their last four games.
Don’t expect the world from Campbell this week, but a solid game is something you can count on.
Tags: Austin Collie, Chester Taylor, Chris Jennings, David Garrard, Early Doucet, Fantasy, Jason Campbell, Jermichael Finley, Josh Freeman, Kevin Faulk, Malcom Floyd, Patrick Crayton, Reggie Brown, Shonn Greene, Sleepers, Willis McGahee