The purpose of reviewing each game allow owners to see each teams players’ fantasy stats in one place. This should help owners get a feel for where their players are in their teams offenses, as well as provide a feel for other players that could become fantasy-relevant in the near future. In the end, the fantasy spin lets you the owner evaluate players by where they should be in terms of setting positional rosters each and every week. It can also help you decide whether to go get a player off waivers, whether to try and make a trade, or whether to sit tight.
On to this week’s Fantasy Three-Sixty!
Thursday, November 17th
8:20 p.m. EST
JETS (5-5) 13 v. 17 BRONCOS (5-5)
Jets: And, the nightmare continues for the Jets. This was a winnable game for the Jets and one they were expected to win, bouncing back from their loss to the Patriots. QB Mark Sanchez (252 yds., 0 TDs, 1 INT) continues to struggle, even in a favorable match-up like this one. Although WR Santonio Holmes (39 yds.), WR Plaxico Burress (64 yds.), and TE Dustin Keller (40 yds.) were worked into the passing game and posted some yards, you were disappointed if you started any of them. Speaking of underperforming, the Jets rushing game had another rough week with RB Shonn Greene (14 APY) due to injury. Even though RB Joe McKnight (121 APY, 1 FMBL) had a good game but for the fumble, he was likely not on fantasy gridirons. The Jets DST (1 sack, 1 DFR) didn’t dominate the game as it was thought they would.
Fantasy Spin: QB Mark Sanchez looks impossible to start even in a favorable match-up right now. While you should continue to start WR Santonio Holmes because of his chances of getting a majority of the pass yards on this team, as well as the prospects of the periodic touchdown, Sanchez’s performance is cause for concern. WR Plaxico Burress has had a couple of decent games, mostly because of touchdowns, but otherwise can be ineffective. Burress remains a WR3 consideration however. As for TE Dustin Keller, he remains a match-up based play as a TE2. Continue giving RB Shonn Greene (when healthy) the starts as an RB2 because he continues to be the team’s rushing workhorse. Should Greene miss time, RB Joe McKnight becomes a solid waiver wire add in an offense built to run the ball. The Jets DST remains a weekly start.
NEXT UP: Bills
Broncos: Winning ugly is a great description for how the Broncos are playing. But, that’s okay because a win is a win. QB Tim Tebow (104 yds., 68 rush yds., 1 TD, 0 INTs) continues to amaze us with his leadership and knack for pulling out the wins for the Broncos. If the Broncos could harness his crunch-time performances at the end of games for an entire game, Tebow would be a fantasy force to be reckoned with. Otherwise, the rest of the Broncos offensive weapons didn’t do anything significant in this game: WR Eric Decker (0 yds.); WR Eddie Royal (25 APY); WR Demarius Thomas (37 yds.); RB Willis McGahee (18 yds., 1 FMBL); and, RB Lance Ball (44 APY). The Broncos DST (3 sacks, 1 INT, 1 DTD) was putting constant pressure on Sanchez and did not allow the Jets offense to get into a rhythm. The defensive touchdown was nice.
Fantasy Spin: QB Tim Tebow continues to get the job done, but it’s just not very pretty. Still, Tebow remains fantasy relevant and is startable in the right match-up. At this point in the season, Tebow remains a quality reserve with bye weeks behind uswho is a borderline TE1. WR Eric Decker continues to be the Broncos receiver to own and start. As for WR Demarius Thomas and WR Eddie Royal, they look to be hit or miss and therefore, should be avoided until one of them establishes themselves in the offense. For owners of RB Willis McGahee, he should be okay even though he didn’t have a big role in this game, which was unexpected. McGahee has ten days off before the next game and should be fine. In the meantime, RB Lance Ball can still be added off waivers as a solid handcuff to McGahee. The Broncos DST has been playing real well. If they keep it up, besides being a match-up based play, they will be able to get some starts.
NEXT UP: at Chargers
Sunday, November 20th
1:00 p.m. EST
PANTHERS (2-8) 35 v. 49 LIONS (7-3)
Panthers: The Panthers played a great game against a great defense! Unfortunately, they just came up short in the loss. A huge factor in the loss was the multi-interceptions tossed by QB Cam Newton (280 yds., 37 rush yds., 3 TDs, 4 INTs). Still, from a fantasy perspective, Newton had a huge game and he was able to connect with WR Steve Smith (46 APY, 1 TD) for a score. Unfortunately, TE Greg Olsen (23 yds.) disappointed even with TE Jeremy Shockey ruled out of the game. Hey, did you notice that the Panthers finally established a running game? RB DeAngelo Williams (105 APY) and RB Jonathan Stewart (109 APY) posted some solid stats. The Panthers DST (2 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 DFR, 1 DTD) came alive, and had its best performance all season long.
Fantasy Spin: Of course, QB Cam Newton should continue to be started unless one of the other higher ranked QBs happens to be on your team and has a better match-up. WR Steve Smith continues to remain a weekly fantasy start. Unfortunately, TE Greg Olsen continues to disappoint. Right now, he should be avoided in fantasy play even though we are hoping for better days. With the Panthers running game showing signs of life, RB DeAngelo Williams is back on fantasy radars. If he is on your waivers, Williams makes for a solid bench add, worth monitoring with the hope that the Panthers continue to work him into the offense. RB Jonathan Stewart should still get flex-play consideration. The Panthers DST will be a fantasy option next week.
NEXT UP: at Colts
Lions: What a great way for the Lions offense to bounce back after a tough loss to the Bears. QB Matt Stafford (335 yds., 5 TDs, 2 INTs) was phenomenal against one of the best fantasy defenses against the quarterback and wide receiver positions. Speaking of wide receivers, WR Calvin Johnson (89 yds.), WR Nate Burleson (63 yds., 1 TD), WR Titus Young (14 yds., 1 TD), TE Brandon Pettigrew (37 yds., 1 TD), and TE Tony Scheffler (24 yds., 1 TD) were all solid in the outing. If you started RB Maurice Morris (37 APY) in this game, you were disappointed as the Lions went with the hot hand of recent off the street signee, RB Kevin Smith (201 APY, 3 TDs) who just rolled over the Panthers. The Lions DST (1 sack, 4 INTs) did well, but the high score hurt their fantasy value this week.
Fantasy Spin: QB Matt Stafford, WR Calvin Johnson, RB Jahvid Best (when healthy), TE Brandon Pettigrew, and the Lions DST remain must-starts each and every week. As for WR Nate Burleson, he is still hit or miss. It would be hard to believe that the Lions will not now turn to RB Kevin Smith as their lead back after this performance. Granted, it was against the worst fantasy rush defense in the league, but how does one deny Smith this opportunity. RB Maurice Morris is nothing more than a low level flex-play at this point.
NEXT UP: Packers (Thursday, November 24th, 12:30 p.m. EST)
BUCCANEERS (4-6) 26 v. 35 PACKERS (10-0)
Buccaneers: Say what you will about the Buccaneers losing this game, but the fact of the matter is the Buccaneers played like the team we expected since Week1. Both their passing game and rushing game were solid. QB Josh Freeman (342 yds., 5 rush yds., 2 TDs, 2 INTs) would have been even better but for the interceptions. Still, this was one of Freeman’s best games this season. Because of Freeman’s improved play, WR Mike Williams (83 yds., 1 TD) scored for the first time since Week 1, WR Arrelious Benn (84 APY) was solid, and TE Kellen Winslow (132 yds.) had his best game of the season. RB LaGarrette Blount (113 yds., 1 TD) stuck it to one of the best rush defenses in fantasy. The Bucs DST (2 sacks, 1 INT) was not going to stop the high octane Packers offense.
Fantasy Spin: While we still expect more from QB Josh Freeman, this is the kind of statistical performance we expect, week-in, week-out. While still difficult to play in fantasy football right now, Freeman is definitely back on fantasy radars. In part, the Buccaneers rededicated themselves to the aspect of their game that helped them so much last season, the running game. Because of this, RB LaGarrette Blount was really good. Blount remains a likely candidate for a low RB2 start or flex-play. As for the Bucs receiving options, it’s still tough to play WR Mike Williams and TE Kellen Winslow with how often they have disappointed this season. Still, they can be considered with your other options. The Bucs DST should simply be avoided in fantasy.
NEXT UP: at Titans
Packers: For a time there, it looked like the Buccaneers were going to go toe-to-toe with the Buccaneers and then the Packers offense just took over. QB Aaron Rodgers (299 yds., 28 rush yds., 3 TDs, 1 INT) continued to drive the Packers offense with WR Jordy Nelson (123 yds., 2 TDs) having the big game, among all the Packers wide receivers. Speaking of the Packers wide receivers, besides WR Donald Driver (72 yds.), the Packers’ other receivers would have disappointed you if you started them including WR Greg Jennings (6 yds.), WR James Jones (0 yds.), and TE Jermichael Finley (30 yds.). Both Finley and RB James Starks (91 APY), who was solid, left the game due to injury. The Packers DST (2 sacks, 2 INTs) didn’t have a very good defensive outing.
Fantasy Spin: QB Aaron Rodgers, WR Greg Jennings, WR Jordy Nelson, and TE Jermichael Finley (when healthy) should continue to be started on a weekly basis. For owners of TE Jermichael Finley and RB James Starks, monitor their injury status this week. Should either miss time, WR James Jones (a low end WR3) and RB Ryan Grant (16 yds.) would get a bump in value. Keep starting the Packers DST.
NEXT UP: at Lions (Thursday, November 24th, 12:30 p.m. EST)
COWBOYS (6-4) 27 v. 24 (OT) REDSKINS (3-7)
Cowboys: The Cowboys had to fight for the win this week against a Redskins team that would not give up. QB Tony Romo (292 yds., 3 TDs, 0 INTs) was solid especially because he was able to finish this game without any interceptions. Romo continued to toss the ball to his primary receivers, WR Dez Bryant (68 yds., 1 TD), WR Laurent Robinson (34 yds., 1 TD), and TE Jason Witten (85 yds., 1 TD), all of whom scored in the game. RB DeMarco Murray (105 APY) continues to impress. As expected, RB Felix Jones (22 APY) didn’t have a big role in this game. The Cowboys DST (3 sacks, 1 INT, 1 DFR) struggled as the game went on.
Fantasy Spin: QB Tony Romo, WR Miles Austin (when healthy), WR Dez Bryant, and TE Jason Witten are worth a fantasy start each and every week. Even with RB Felix Jones back to the gridiron, RB DeMarco Murray remains the Cowboys leading running back. With Miles Austin out, WR Laurent Robinson continues to be worth the fantasy start. The Cowboys DST is still worth starting in fantasy, especially in a good match-up.
NEXT UP: Dolphins (Thursday, November 24th, 4:15 p.m. EST)
Redskins: QB Rex Grossman (289 yds., 10 rush yds., 2 pass TDs, 1 rush TD, 1 INT) bounced back nicely this week. Finally, WR Jabar Gaffney (115 yds., 1 TD) looked like the weapon we all that he would be when Santana Moss was lost to injury. In addition, a name we haven’t heard in a while, WR Donte Stallworth (51 yds., 1 TD) got in the mix, and posted a TD this week. Unfortunately, TE Fred Davis (49 yds.) struggled in the passing game again, and neither RB Roy Helu (38 APY) nor RB Ryan Torrain (6 APY) did much of anything in the rushing game. The Redskins DST (4 sacks) was able to pressure Romo but couldn’t keep the Cowboys off the score board.
Fantasy Spin: Regardless of this game, QB Rex Grossman should be avoided in fantasy football until we know he can have this type of game on a consistent basis. If you insist on adding Grossman, be ready to potentially take the good with the bad. At this juncture, we still can’t say whether RB Roy Helu or RB Ryan Torrain will be the team’s workhorse, split carries, or struggle in the rushing game like this week. It’s a situation to be avoided. TE Fred Davis didn’t look very good in this game yet again. While he is still this team’s main playmaker, he should be considered for a start along with your other tight-end. WR Jabar Gaffney finally had a good game and regardless of what happened, Gaffney is the only wide receiver to own and consider starting until WR Santana Moss returns from injury. Until the offense gets going, the Redskins DST might be one to avoid too unless it’s a good match-up.
NEXT UP: at Seahawks
BILLS (5-5) 8 v. 35 DOLPHINS (3-7)
Bills: The Bills are playing some pretty bad football, and it’s disheartening after the great start they had to the season. And, it’s an overall team that is struggling, not just one or two aspects of their game. That said, QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (209 yds., 16 rush yds., 0 TDs, 2 INTs) struggled again against a Dolphins pass defense that seemed to have the Bills’ number. Even though, RB Fred Jackson (67 APY) started strong, he eventually left the game due to injury and there was no one to pick up the slack. Moreover, besides TE Scott Chandler (71 yds.), neither WR Stevie Johnson (16 yds.) nor WR David Nelson (0 yds.) were a significant part of the passing offense as they should have been. The Bills DST (1 sack, 1 SFTY) struggled once again.
Fantasy Spin: QB Ryan Fitzpatrick is obviously struggling and is at this point in the fantasy season, a QB2 to back-up your starter. Fantasy footballers starting WR Steve Johnson have to be concerned. He is still a fantasy playmaker and can be started when healthy. As for RB Fred Jackson, he is lost for the season. RB C.J. Spiller will now get his chance and should be owned in fantasy. As for WR David Nelson, he is still worth consideration as a WR3 but a game like this one certainly does nothing for the confidence of fantasy footballers. Talented TE Scott Chandler has not been a big part of the offense and is inconsistent. Don’t let this performance affect that evaluation till further notice. The Bills DST started the season opportunistic but hasn’t done much the last several games. They remain a risky play. The only way they are worth starting is if the rest of your roster is solid.
NEXT UP: at Jets
Dolphins: This was the strangest of wins for the Dolphins because while the score makes it appear that the Dolphins generated an inordinate amount of offense, the truth is the team posted only 244 yards of combined passing and rushing offense. However, the Dolphins made it count. QB Matt Moore (160 yds., 3 TDs, 0 INT) was solid in limited passing action. The Dolphins simply spread the ball around with no single player being a dominant force in the offense. To understand what happened here, WR Brandon Marshall (5 yds.) was limited while players like WR Davone Bess (25 yds., 1 TD) and TE Anthony Fasano (8 yds., 1 TD) were able to score touchdowns. To add to this, RB Reggie Bush (66 APY, 1 TD) had another solid performance by way of his touchdown, as did FB Charles Clay (69 yds., 1 TD). Unfortunately, RB Daniel Thomas (50 yds.) didn’t put up the kind of performance fantasy footballers expect from him. The Dolphins DST (1 sack, 1 KRTD) had another solid performance, helped by the low score and defensive TD.
Fantasy Spin: QB Matt Moore had another good outing could still be inconsistent. WR Brandon Marshall is still the most dangerous fantasy option on team. RB Reggie Bush has now had four games in a row of good performances all at the expense of RB Daniel Thomas. Continue looking Bush’s way as a solid flex option. Let’s hope Thomas’ off game was simply a product of the Dolphins wanting to keep their main back healthy. Continue treating Thomas as a potential flex-play, but player you may end up monitoring rather than playing right now. TE Anthony Fasano had another decent game and did his part if you used him as a bye-week replacement. The Dolphins DST continues to be a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: at Cowboys (Thursday, November 24th, 4:15 p.m. EST)
JAGUARS (3-7) 10 v. 14 BROWNS (4-6)
Jaguars: The underrated Jaguars DST (2 sacks, 1 INT) continued to shine this week and took advantage of a struggling Browns offense even though the final score did not reflect it. QB Blaine Gabbert (210 yds., 10 rush yds., 0 TDs, 0 INTs) passed the ball quite a bit but just couldn’t get it into the end zone. Besides RB Maurice Jones-Drew (108 APY, 1 TD), WR Mike Thomas (23 APY), WR Jason Hill (49 yds.), WR Jason Dillard (29 yds.), and TE Marcedes Lewis (64 yds.), didn’t do anything significant in this game.
Fantasy Spin: RB Maurice Jones-Drew is the only Jaguars player worth fantasy consideration on a weekly basis. Until the passing game gets going, fantasy owners should avoid the other Jaguars playmakers with the expectation that they play well, even in a good match-up. The Jaguars DST has been playing well and can be used in fantasy.
NEXT UP: Texans
Browns: The Browns had their hands full again with QB Colt McCoy (199 yds., 27 rush yds., 1 TD, 1 INT) failing to do much of anything. However, RB Chris Ogbonnaya (134 APY, 1 TD) continued to play well and helped the team win this game with his running. As for the Browns receivers, WR Greg Little (59 yds.) posted some yards while WR Josh Cribbs (22 APY, 1 TD) scored the teams other touchdown. TE Ben Watson (18 yds.) failed to post any meaningful fantasy stats yet again. Again, the Browns DST (1 sack) played well and was effective, especially with the low score.
Fantasy Spin: So long as RB Chris Ogbonnaya keeps running the ball, he remains a good option for fantasy football. With yet another disappointing performance, TE Ben Watson and WR Greg Little are difficult to play in fantasy. At best, they are worth weekly consideration. At a minimum, they should continue to get their chances. The Browns DST is still a mach-up based play.
NEXT UP: at Bengals
RAIDERS (6-4) 27 v. 21 VIKINGS (2-8)
Raiders: This was another great win for the Raiders, now in first in the AFC West. Strangely, the Raiders didn’t win this game through their passing game. QB Carson Palmer (164 yds., 1 pass TD, 1 rush TD) was solid fantasy-wise due to the rushing TD. Otherwise, hot waiver-wire pick-up WR Denarius Moore (14 yds.) did little even after WR Darrius Heyward-Bey (43 yds.) left due to injury. With RB Darren McFadden still out, RB Michael Bush (129 APY, 1 TD, 1 FMBL) continued to dominate the offense. The Raiders DST (5 sacks, 3 INTs, 1 DFR) continued to play well, pressuring the Vikings young quarterback in this game.
Fantasy Spin: RB Darren McFadden (when healthy) is the Raider to start in fantasy each and every week. However, with RB Michael Bush playing at a high level, the Raiders may not be quick to rush McFadden back to the gridiron until it is time. It was unfortunate that WR Darrius Heyward-Bey went down to injury as he looked to be having a good game. So long as he and WR Jacoby Ford are out, WR Denarius Moore the team’s No. 1 wide receiver. This was a disappointing outing for QB Carson Palmer. Still, if he is on your fantasy team, you should hang on to him. The Raiders look like they are in a position to win games and Palmer is helping them. The Raiders DST can be on rosters, and should be considered for at least a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: Bears
Vikings: Regardless of the pressure the Raiders were putting on QB Christian Ponder (211 yds., 71 rush yds., 2 TDs, 3 INTs) he played well but for the turnovers. Indeed, WR Percy Harvin (94 APY, 1 TD) benefited the most while TE Visanthe Shiancoe (42 yds.) didn’t do as much as was hoped. Unfortunately, RB Adrian Peterson (26 yds., 1 TD) left the game due to an ankle injury and did not return even though on the sidelines. Peterson is expected to miss 1 to 2 weeks. In his stead, RB Toby Gerhart (7 yds.) did little but the Vikings were playing from behind. The Vikings DST (4 sacks, 1 DFR) did its best and would have done better but for the score.
Fantasy Spin: QB Christian Ponder is still a fantasy worthy quarterback. Fantasy footballers with RB Adrian Peterson need to add RB Toby Gerhart. Both WR Percy Harvin and TE Visanthe Shiancoe are fantasy relevant, but should be considered along with your other options.
NEXT UP: at Falcons
BENGALS (6-4) 24 v. 31 RAVENS (7-3)
Bengals: The Bengals lost the game, but it was not an easy win for the Ravens. The Bengals were tough. QB Andy Dalton (373 yds., 32 rush yds., 1 TD, 3 INTs) would have been outstanding but for the interceptions. Still, he did well as the team’s field general and was able to move the team up the field by hitting WR Jerome Simpson (152 yds.), WR Andre Caldwell (63 yds., 1 TD), and TE Jermaine Gresham (48 yds.) in the passing game. In a game against one of the best rush defenses in the league, RB Cedric Benson (43 APY, 2 TDs) was helped by scoring twice! The Bengals DST (1 sack, 1 INT) couldn’t stop the Ravens offense this week.
Fantasy Spin: Both RB Cedric Benson and WR A.J. Green (when healthy) continue to be the best fantasy options on the Bengals. As for QB Andy Dalton, he is worth consideration for a fantasy start even when the bye weeks conclude. The concern is Dalton could be inconsistent. WR A.J. Green is definitely worth a WR2 start. Should Green miss anymore time, WR Jerome Simpson makes for a solid waiver wire pick-up. The Bengals DST is one of the best defensive units out there. They should be on rosters and started.
NEXT UP: Browns
Ravens: The Ravens are a tough team to figure out. One week, they lose in a head-scratcher, and in another, they play at what looks like a high-level, with their rushing game and passing game clicking on all cylinders. QB Joe Flacco (270 yds., 2 TDs, 1 INT) played better due to the increased yardage and multi-TD game. Flacco was able to get both WR Anquan Boldin (35 yds., 1 TD) and especially WR Torrey Smith (165 yds., 1 TD), going in the passing game. Unfortunately, TE Ed Dickson (21 yds.) disappeared from the box score again. As usual, RB Ray Rice (147 APY, 2 TDs) was outstanding! The Ravens DST (2 sacks, 2 INTs, 2 DFRs) played well, even without LB Ray Lewis, but for the score.
Fantasy Spin: If QB Joe Flacco is on your roster, he is likely your QB2. Flacco remains a match-up based play but it’s games like this that show case his potential. RB Ray Rice and WR Anquan Boldin remain weekly must-starts. As for WR Torrey Smith, he is still a WR3 consideration so long as WR Lee Evans does not start to eat into his production. Indeed, Smith’s big-play ability should likely keep him in the Ravens line-up for the foreseeable future. TE Ed Dickson is a TE2 at best. As for the Ravens DST, keep starting them.
NEXT UP: Forty-Niners (Thursday, November 24th, 8:20 p.m. EST)
Sunday, November 20th
4:05 p.m. EST
TITANS (5-5) 17 v. 23 FALCONS (6-4)
Titans: The Titans looked out of this game early. But then, the Titans made a strong effort to challenge the Falcons for the win with QB Jake Locker (140 yds., 11 rush yds., 2 TDs) leading the team with QB Matt Hasselbeck (124 yds., 17 rush yds., 0 TDs, 1 INT) out with an elbow injury. Indeed, Locker breathed life into the struggling Titans offense and helped WR Nate Washington (115 yds., 2 TDs) have one of his best games of the season! TE Jared Cook (51 yds.) was solid in a tough match-up. Unfortunately, WR Damian Williams (16 yds.) was a non-factor as was RB Chris Johnson (28 APY). The Titans DST (1 DFR) seemed overmatched against a good Falcons offense.
Fantasy Spin: With QB Matt Hasselbeck possibly out due to injury, QB Jake Locker suddenly becomes fantasy-relevant especially given the fact that he posted some solid stats in limited action. Besides, Locker was firing bullets across the field and looked like a quarterback beyond his years. While not likely an instant waiver wire add, he could be for fantasy footballers with extra bench space. Just one week ago, it looked liked WR Damian Williams surpassed WR Nate Washington in the passing game. But with this game, that may not be the case. If Washington was released to your league’s waivers, Washington can be added off waivers again. TE Jared Cook is at best a decent TE2, match-up based play. After RB Chris Johnson made such great strides the past two weeks to re-earn the trust of fantasy footballers, this week’s disappointing performance hurt. Granted, this was a tough match-up to begin with but we expect more regardless. Johnson remains an RB2, or flex-play. The Titans DST remains a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: Buccaneers
Falcons: As alluded to above, the Falcons were very much in control of this game from the beginning. QB Matt Ryan (316 yds., 1 TD, 0 INTs) didn’t have the greatest of games, but it was still solid especially because Ryan avoided any turnovers. With WR Julio Jones out, WR Roddy White (147 yds.) blew it up in a tough match-up against some of the best corners in the league. WR Harry Douglas (51 yds.) was decent, and TE Tony Gonzalez (74 yds., 1 TD) had another solid outing for fantasy footballers that started him. RB Michael Turner (109 APY, 1 TD, 1 FMBL) did well as usual. The Falcons DST (1 sack, 1 INT) played well up until Locker entered the game.
Fantasy Spin: Continue to consider starting the Falcons main playmakers like QB Matt Ryan, RB Michael Turner, WR Roddy White, and WR Julio Jones (when healthy) each and every week. TE Tony Gonzalez remains a weekly match-up based play. This week, the Falcons DST didn’t have a very good defensive outing, but they are a better unit than the statistics reflect. They are worth starting in fantasy, with the way they have played, in the right match-up.
NEXT UP: Vikings
SEAHAWKS (4-6) 24 v. 7 RAMS (2-8)
Seahawks: The Seahawks played well in this game and pulled out another solid victory. What was absolutely impressive was RB Marshawn Lynch (88 yds., 1 TD), who has been on fire the last three games! While QB Tarvaris Jackson (148 yds., 10 rush yds., 1 TD, 2 INTs) continues to struggle, WR Sidney Rice (90 APY, 1 TD) and WR Doug Baldwin (60 yds.) continue to play well. This week, even WR Mike Williams (62 yds.) made an appearance in the box score. The Seahawks DST (5 sacks, 1 INT, 2 DFRs) continues to play very well in what is probably the most crucial games of the season.
Fantasy Spin: Even though the Seahawks lost both their starting right guard and right tackle the previous week, RB Marshawn Lynch continued to play at a high level. Lynch has become a must start because he is the team’s main rushing threat, and likely, its greatest offensive weapon. WR Sidney Rice continues to be the most talented Seahawks player and the other Seahawks player to consider for a fantasy start. So long as QB Tarvaris Jackson plays, Rice is a player to start because of their chemistry. WR Doug Baldwin continues to be fantasy relevant but The Fantasy Greek has to think you have better options at this point in the season. The Seahawks DST has been hot lately, so consider the unit as a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: Redskins
Rams: It was expected that the Rams would have a better game than they had here. QB Sam Bradford (181 yds., 1 TD, 1 INT, 2 FMBLs) continued to struggle. Without a good passing game, even RB Steven Jackson (61 APY) played well below what fantasy footballers typically expect from an RB2. However, WR Brandon Lloyd (67 yds., 1 TD) continues to produce in the offense on a weekly basis. The Rams DST (4 sacks, 2 INTs) had another solid week even though the high score hurt and ultimately resulted in a loss.
Fantasy Spin: WR Brandon Lloyd continues to be a must start along with RB Steven Jackson. Unfortunately, QB Sam Bradford continues to struggle and there is no reason to believe that this will change any time soon. The Rams DST continues to play well for fantasy purposes so they remain a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: Cardinals
CARDINALS (3-7) 7 v. 23 FORTY-NINERS (9-1)
Cardinals: After the Cardinals looked like they were getting their bearings with a couple of wins, the Cardinals took a big step back with this devastating loss to the Forty-Niners. It’s not because the Cardinals lost, but how they lost. QB John Skelton (99 yds., 0 TDs, 3 INTs) was completely ineffective passing against a Forty-Niners pass defense that has struggled at times to the point he was pulled from the game for back-up QB Richard Bartel (64 yds., 1 TD). Fortunately, WR Larry Fitzgerald (41 yds., 1 TD) was able to score the teams only points or else he would have completely disappointed. With the Cardinals struggling to pass the ball, WR Early Doucet (50 yds.) didn’t do anything significant in the game. Worse yet, RB Beanie Wells (33 yds., 1 FMBL) struggled to run the ball and is still banged up. With the offense struggling, so did the the Cardinals DST (1 INT).
Fantasy Spin: WR Larry Fitzgerald remains a must-start in fantasy. Unfortunately, with RB Beanie Wells banged up, and his performance affected, he has become difficult to play in fantasy. Otherwise, when healthy, Wells should be considered for the weekly fantasy start. Just when we thought QB John Skelton would challenge Kevin Kolb for the starting job, Skelton regressed. This could be a function of the Forty-Niners stepping up their pass defense however. In any case, Skelton’s time under center is likely short lived with Kolb possibly back as soon as this week. The Cardinals DST is better than the box score reflects. The Cardinals DST is a fantasy option based strictly on the match-up.
NEXT UP: at Rams
Forty-Niners: The Forty-Niners continue to roll over their lesser opponents and are playing some of the best football in the league right now. The numbers aren’t overly impressive, but the Forty-Niners are getting the job done. QB Alex Smith (267 yds., 17 rush yds., 2 TDs, 1 INT) was solid and got the passing game going to fantasy TE Vernon Davis (67 yds., 1 TD) and to fantasy WR Michael Crabtree (120 yds.), the latter of which had his best game of the season. With the Forty-Niners being a run first team, RB Frank Gore (94 APY) got back on track after leaving last week’s game due to injury. The Forty-Niners DST (2 sacks, 2 INTs, 2 DFRs) had a great game and was impressive in being able to shut down the Cardinals passing game.
Fantasy Spin: It goes without saying that you should continue starting RB Frank Gore and TE Vernon Davis in fantasy, even though Davis may be more sensitive to the match-up. With this game, WR Michael Crabtree is bordering on must start, WR3 status. If you can say one thing about QB Alex Smith, he is consistent and remains a viable QB2, or match-up based play. The Forty-Niners DST is a must-start fantasy DST week in, week out.
NEXT UP: at Ravens (Thursday, November 24th, 8:20 p.m. EST)
Sunday, November 20th
4:15 p.m. EST
CHARGERS (4-6) 20 v. 31 BEARS (7-3)
Chargers: The Chargers continue to struggle having lost their last five games. They are also a team that is sustaining its share of key injuries. In any case, QB Philip Rivers (280 yds., 2 TDs, 2 INTs) remained under constant pressure. Still, WR Vincent Jackson (165 yds., 1 TD) and TE Antonio Gates (63 yds., 1 TD) helped fantasy footballers this week. Unfortunately, the Chargers rushing attack struggled with RB Ryan Mathews (51 APY, 1 FMBL) and RB Mike Tolbert (38 APY) bottled up in this game. If you played WR Vincent Brown (8 yds.) as a WR3, you were extremely disappointed. The Chargers DST (1 INT) couldn’t handle the Bears offense and was on its heels constantly in this game.
Fantasy Spin: Until the Chargers can get QB Philip Rivers some pass protection, he could continue to struggle in certain games. Still, Rivers remains effective for fantasy football purposes as does WR Vincent Jackson and TE Antonio Gates. They should continue to be started weekly as this team’s playmakers. It should likely be no surprise that WR Vincent Brown disappeared from this game. It was bound to happen and the Bears defense has been playing just too well. Brown is still a legitimate threat in the offense and worth keeping on benches for now as a match-up based play. This isn’t the kind of game fantasy footballers expect from the Chargers running backs. But, you have to think there are better days ahead. As such, RB Ryan Mathews and RB Mike Tolbert remain a solid RB2 and weekly flex-play, respectively. The Chargers DST should continue to be considered for a fantasy start for now.
NEXT UP: Broncos
Bears: Let’s begin with the good news. The Bears have won their last five games and are on a tear. Three weeks in a row, the Bears have played some incredible football! Indeed, leading the way, QB Jay Cutler (286 yds., 11 rush yds., 2 pass TDs, 1 rush TD, 1 INT) finally hit a high point as the Bears quarterback with the protection and passing game coming together at one time. The passing game was so good that WR Earl Bennett (75 yds.), WR Johnny Knox (97 yds., 1 TD), and WR Roy Williams (62 yds.) all contributed to the victory. Unfortunately for fantasy footballers, with the passing game hitting on all cylinders, the emphasis on the rushing game took a bit of a back seat as RB Matt Forte (83 APY) was not the main contributor to the offense, and RB Marion Barber (25 yds., 1 TD) continued to get some carries, as well as the goal line work. The Bears DST (2 INTs, 1 DFR) may not have posted the kind of fantasy stats fantasy footballers may have wanted, but this was still more than just a solid outing.
Fantasy Spin: The bad news. The Bears lost QB Jay Cutler until at least Week 16 due to a fractured finger. Still, this is no cause for panic. After Cutler went down to injury in the NFC Championship Game last season after a series in the third-quarter, and after QB Todd Collins went 0-4 in passing, QB Caleb Hanie went 13-for-20 passing for 153 yards, 1 touchdown, on 2 interceptions. Translate those numbers over the course of the game, and you get the picture. Plus, this was against a much better Packers pass defense than this season. The Raiders entered Week 11 allowing the seventh most fantasy points to the quarterback position. Let’s see how Caleb does. If the Bears offensive line can continue protecting Hanie, we should continue to see a good Bears offense. If you have WR Earl Bennett on your roster, hold on to him and let’s see how the Bears do. Also, keep an eye on WR Johnny Knox. In one week’s time, Knox got back on fantasy radars with his 97 yard, 1 touchdown performance. Granted, fantasy footballers may be hesitant to add Knox with QB Caleb Hanie under center this weekend. Yet, as mentioned, Hanie could do well. RB Matt Forte is the Bears player to play each and every week. The Bears DST remains a must start fantasy unit worth fantasy consideration because of its potential to cause turnovers and make the big plays.
NEXT UP: at Raiders
Sunday, November 20th
8:20 p.m. EST
EAGLES (4-6) 17 v. 10 GIANTS (6-4)
Eagles: As we all know, “It’s not over, till it’s over.” While the Eagles DST (3 sacks, 1 INT, 1 DFR) wasn’t able to completely stop the Giants offense, they did a good job keeping the Giants out of the end zone. What’s more, even without QB Michael Vick for this game, the Eagles offense continued to produce with QB Vince Young (258 yds., 5 rush yds., 2 TDs, 3 INTs) doing a great job filling in. In fact, Young was able to get the passing game going even with WR Jeremy Maclin out due to injury. Indeed, for fantasy footballers showing a little bit of faith, they were rewarded with WR DeSean Jackson (88 yds.) having one of his best games in a while. If you took a flier on WR Riley Cooper (75 yds., 1 TD), you were rewarded too. TE Brent Celek (60 yds.) had another decent outing. RB LeSean McCoy (113 yds.) continued to produce in fantasy.
Fantasy Spin: As you know, when healthy, QB Michael Vick, RB LeSean McCoy, WR DeSean Jackson, and WR Jeremy Maclin should be started weekly. As long as Vick is out, QB Vince Young will get the start and is at a minimum, a solid option as a match-up based play. TE Brent Celek has had his fifth straight game where he posted some meaningful stats. Expect this to continue. Celek is certainly a match-up based play. The Eagles DST had another good week. Consider the Eagles DST for match-up based plays.
NEXT UP: Patriots
Giants: If you are a Giants fan, you can’t be happy with the loss against what people thought was an Eagles team that was imploding. From a fantasy perspective, QB Eli Manning (264 yds., 1 TD, 1 INT, 1 FMBL) had an off week and did not make for the greatest of starts. Still, his performance was good enough that that WR Victor Cruz (128 yds., 1 TD) and WR Hakeem Nicks (69 yds.) had good games, even though we expected a bit more from Nicks. Unfortunately, WR Mario Manningham (4 yds.) and TE Jake Ballard (13 yds.) were fantasy non-factors and didn’t have the kind of game fantasy footballers would have wanted. Even with RB Ahmad Bradshaw out due to injury, RB Brandon Jacobs (21 yds.) struggled as did RB Danny Ware (14 APY). The Giants DST (1 sack, 3 INTs) wasn’t as good as expected.
Fantasy Spin: This week, QB Eli Manning continued to show why he can frustrate fantasy owners. Still, with the way the Giants passing game has come alive, you have to consider Manning for the weekly start as well as WR Hakeem Nicks, WR Victor Cruz, and WR Mario Manningham. All of the Giants passing threats can be on fantasy gridirons on a weekly basis, with Cruz seemingly overtaking Nicks in terms of fantasy value. Also, when healthy, RB Ahmad Bradshaw and RB Brandon Jacobs remain an RB2 and an RB3/flex-play, respectively. Don’t let this game dissuade you from starting Jacobs as it can happen to even the best of players from time to time. With Bradshaw out, Jacobs continues to be a solid RB2. TE Jake Ballard continues to be a factor in the offense and worth a start. The Giants DST can continue to be started in fantasy.
NEXT UP: at Saints (Monday Night Football)
Monday, November 21th
8:30 p.m. EST
CHIEFS (4-6) 3 v. 34 PATRIOTS (7-3)
Chiefs: This was another awful game for the Chiefs as they were unable to establish a passing game or a rushing game. Suppose QB Tyler Palko (236 yds., 0 TDs, 3 INTs) did as much as could be expected but it was certainly not a fantasy worthy outing. Still, WR Dwayne Bowe (87 yds.) and WR Steve Breaston (73 yds.) were still very much a part of the offense while WR Jonathan Baldwin (16 yds.) was not. The Chiefs couldn’t establish a real rushing game even though RB Jackie Battle (43 yds.) and WR Dexter McCluster (48 APY) were able to post some stats. The Chiefs DST (3 sacks, 1 DFR) struggled as they couldn’t keep the Patriots out of the end zone.
Fantasy Spin: Even with QB Tyler Palko under center, it didn’t hurt the fantasy value of WR Dwayne Bowe or WR Steve Breaston. Bowe is the Chiefs player fantasy footballers should keep starting in fantasy. With the Chiefs signing QB Kyle Orton, this should only help. Orton should be somewhat familiar with the offense due to his time with Josh McDaniels when with the Broncos. Orton could be on the gridiron as soon as Week 13 and would only help. If you have the roster room, Orton is worth adding to see how things play out. The Chiefs commitment to the run has been lacking and inconsistent. As such, RB Jackie Battle has been far less of a factor in the offense as fantasy footballers expected. It didn’t help that the Chiefs fell behind early in the score. At best, Battle is worth low flex-play consideration. WR Steve Breaston is still the team’s No. 2 wide-out for this team and should continue to be good for some starts, but consider your other options too. We expect more from the Chiefs DST but are not getting it. Their pass defense was actually not bad in this game. Still, the Chiefs DST is no better than a match-up based play, if that.
NEXT UP: Steelers (Sunday Night Football)
Patriots: The Patriots dominated the Chiefs in the win. QB Tom Brady (234 yds., 10 rush yds., 2 TDs, 0 INTs, 1 FMBL) had a good game, but it certainly wasn’t his best of the season and not what fantasy footballers expect. WR Wes Welker (22 yds.) was limited again, as was TE Aaron Hernandez (44 yds.) and WR Deion Branch (19 yds.). On the other hand, TE Rob Gronkowski (96 yds., 2 TDs) continued to dominate! Unlike the last few weeks, the Patriots focused on getting their rushing game going with primary RB Ben Jarvus Green-Ellis (106 APY) having his best game in several weeks and both RB Danny Woodhead (65 APY) and rookie RB Shane Vereen (39 yds., 1 TD) contributing. The Patriots DST (3 sacks, 3 INTs, 1 KRTD) was awesome!
Fantasy Spin: QB Tom Brady and WR Wes Welker are weekly must-starts, as are TE Rob Gronkowski and TE Aaron Hernandez. WR Deion Branch remains a decent WR3. RB Ben Jarvus Green-Ellis is a bit of a head-scratcher with his on-again, off-again involvement in the offense. It seems if there is a good chance that the Patriots will run away with the game, the Patriots will turn to the running game to eat out the clock. As such, Green-Ellis is still worth consideration as a low-RB2, but more so as a flex-play, especially with how thin the group of running backs have become in fantasy. The Patriots DST was good in this game and are worth a match-up based play.
NEXT UP: at Eagles
Good luck this weekend!