It is here. We are pretty much at the halfway point in the regular season for fantasy football.
Many of the hours we spent looking at player X against player Y during the summer are now meaningless. With five weeks in the books we can no longer look at what we expected when we researched two months ago.
Draft day value is essentially meaningless at this point.
Do not be the fantasy owner who hangs onto hope from preseason expectations. Good owners need to adapt to the ever-changing fantasy football world.
Eli Manning at Eagles (54% started): The Eagles have allowed at least 250 passing yards and at least one touchdown in every game this season. The Eagles offense almost always plays into a high scoring game for the opposing team. They are either scoring a lot or the offense is off the field quickly with a stalled drive.
Andy Dalton at Bills (55% started): Through the first five weeks I have been waiting for bad Andy to show up, but he never does. Dalton is putting this team on his back and using all the weapons he has at his disposal. Don’t be scared of the Bills. Even though he struggled for a large part of the game last week against the Seahawks when it was over, he still put up good numbers.
Philip Rivers at Packers (50% started): Typically the Packers are dominant on offense when at home, other than last week. The 24 point game last week was the lowest point total the Packers have had at home in the past two seasons. Home or road the Packers put up points. The Chargers should be chasing them most of the day and the struggles of the Charger run game only helps the fantasy outlook for Rivers.
Peyton Manning at Browns (67% started): It brings a tear to my eye to say this, but it is over for Manning. He can’t get anything on his downfield passes and he is not getting it done on the short stuff either. Denver has playmakers in the passing game and they could get Peyton going with some short screens to Demaryius Thomas. At this point he is a run after the catch to get stats kind of quarterback.
Cam Newton at Seattle (29% started): The Seahawks are at home and Newton has struggled against them in the past. He could find his way to get a rushing touchdown, but that might be the only way to salvage his fantasy day.
Matt Stafford vs. Bears (28% started): I beg of you. Stop starting Matt Stafford. The fact that he is even close to Cam Newton in starting percentage is crazy to me. Unless you are in a two quarterback league, leave him on your bench until he shows you he can do something – yes, even against the Bears.
Blake Bortles vs. Texans (26% started): The only worry is his shoulder might not be 100 percent. If Yeldon is a no go (and it is really looking like he might not play at this point) it could mean more passing for Bortles. Remember what Matt Hasselbeck did to the Texans last week? That was 40-year-old virus stricken Matt Hasselbeck. If Bortles plays he is great option this week.
LeGarrette Blount at Colts (62% started): To this point he has primarily been the late game running back when they are up a lot and running out the clock. He could get a bigger role this week and some red zone carries. The Patriots could win this one big again giving Blount a chance for 15-20 carries.
Danny Woodhead at Packers (55% started): I menntioned it with Rivers: the running game with Gordon hasn’t been working. Woodhead is the guy they trust in passing situations and I expect the Chargers to be airing it out this week.
Chris Johnson at Steelers (57% started): The Steelers can be run on. Chris Johnson is the lead back with Ellington and David Johnson splitting time behind him. Chris Johnson is being revived this season.
Lamar Miller at Titans (60% started): The new coach might give him the ball more, but he hasn’t been fantastic so far this season. The team still isn’t that good, and if Miller really was doing that well he would have been getting carries before the coaching change. I am willing to have him go for double-digit points on my bench. I need to see it before I start him again.
C.J. Anderson vs. Broncos (57% started): He has done nothing this year; Ronnie Hillman hasn’t either. If Hillman or Anderson could do anything at all they could run away with the job. Other than Hillman’s long run a few weeks ago this run offense hasn’t produced anything. If Anderson has another down week this week he is safely droppable if you have another player you want on the waiver wire.
Jeremy Hill at Bills (50% started): Do not listen to the coaches, he is playing second fiddle to Giovani Bernard. The Bills strength is their front seven. This is another game that plays into Bernard’s style. Hill might get a touchdown from inside the five, but I wouldn’t expect much more.
Shane Vereen at Eagles (24% started): The receivers for the Giants are banged up. Vereen is a reliable option for Manning out of the backfield.
Denard Robinson vs. Texans (1% started): If I had to bet, I don’t think T.J. Yeldon plays this week. Robinson was really good when given a chance last year. He could be great in a spot start.
Allen Hurns vs. Texans (45% started): Hurns has been on a roll, and with Yeldon potentially out it could mean more work for Hurns. The Texans have struggled against secondary targets in the passing game lately; Andre Johnson had 77 yards and two touchdowns last week and Leonard Hankerson had 103 yards and a touchdown the week before.
Eric Decker vs. Redskins (37% started): The Redskins have a big weakness in the secondary. Decker has had at least 90 yards or a touchdown in every game he has played this season.
Jarvis Landry at Titans (52% started): Even with the team crumbling around him Landry has been great for PPR and more than acceptable for standard leagues. He will never win you a week, but he will usually provide solid yardage numbers.
Antonio Brown vs. Cardinals (95% started): You probably don’t have better options and I completely understand that. A quick look at this week’s receivers and I would place Brown right around receiver 18-20. You could be in a situation where you have Brown, Brandon Marshall, James Jones and Allen Robinson, and in that case Brown is the one to sit. He doesn’t get enough looks in the passing game with Ben Roethlisberger out. Do not worry though, Big Ben’s return is coming back sooner rather than later.
Travis Benjamin vs. Broncos (40% started): The big reason for this one is the Denver defense. The Browns have few playmakers on offense and Denver is littered with them on defense. The Bronco offense isn’t as good as it used to be so this game should be close enough that at least the entire second half won’t be garbage time.
Pierre Gracon at Jets (35% started): The corners for the Jets are just too good; he can be shutdown by either of the Jets top options without a problem.
Anquan Boldin (28% started): The Ravens pass defense is really bad. Boldin and the 49ers showed signs of life on offense last week as well.
Antonio Gates at Packers (80% started): He is already highly started but I want to make sure everyone knows he should be started in all leagues. Gates is easily a top five tight end, if he isn’t the best of the tight ends not named Rob Gronkowski.
Greg Olsen at Seahawks (63% started): The matchup is scaring people off, but Olsen is a prime target for Newton in the passing game. Unless you have Gronkowski and Gates he should be in your lineup.
Delanie Walker vs. Dolphins (43% started): Always overlooked, but Walker always puts up a nice stat line. He has a high floor with some decent upside.
Jimmy Graham vs. Panthers (78% started): He still isn’t being utilized. With the pass catchers that offense has there is no way Graham should be putting up numbers like he has. His is just a name at this point.
Gary Barnidge vs. Broncos (48% started): The Bronco defense is one of the best in the league, and Barnidge is far from an elite talent at the tight end position.
Zach Ertz vs. Giants (40% started): His six point game last week was his best performance of the season.
Derek Carrier at Jets (2% started): He scored last week and the Redskins’ tight ends have performed well so far this season. If you need an option this far down Carrier is your man.
Cincinnati Bengals at Bills (34% started): E.J. Manuel might start this week. Do I need to say anything else?
Carolina Panthers at Seahawks (35% started): The Seahawks offensive line has been bad. Expect three plus sacks from the Panthers this week.
Minnesota Vikings vs. Chiefs (30% started): With Charles out of the offense there isn’t much left that scares defenses, at least as long as Alex Smith is the quarterback. There might not be many turnovers, but I expect the Vikings to keep the score down.
Baltimore Ravens at 49ers (53% started): Scrambling quarterbacks are more likely to get sacked than pocket passers. Colin Kaepernick is always turnover prone too.
Houston Texans at Jaguars (48% started): The Texans have had one of the worst defenses in fantasy this year. The Jaguars offense is trending up as well.
Miami Dolphins at Titans (12% started): The Dolphins defense looked atrocious before the bye. They might be better now but I am not taking a chance on it.
Josh Brown at Eagles (61% started): This could very well be a back and forth high scoring game.
Chandler Catanzaro at Steelers (37% started): The kicker on one of the top offenses in the league
Josh Lambo at Packers (7% started): Like the Eagles Giants game, this one could be high scoring.
Graham Gano at Seahawks (17% started): I don’t like starting kickers in games where I wouldn’t be surprised if his team didn’t score double digits.
Matt Prater vs. Bears (45% started): The Detroit offense has just not been good to this point.
Travis Coons vs. Broncos (5% started): See Graham Gano. The Broncos might not let the Browns get past midfield.
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