Fantasy Football Start Sit
People….. it feels so good to be back! A Super Bowl, an NFL Draft, mini camps, OTAs, hold outs, injuries, free agency, draft kits, rankings, studying, the drafting of your team, and low and behold here we are on the door step of show time. The 2012 season is finally upon us and the long summer of waiting has come to an end. For those of you who have spent some time with us, be it studying, drafting, social networking, or forum’ing, thank you. We are working hard to bring you the best fantasy football experience possible and we are excited to begin our full second year with you. I could continue on with filler and some catchy metaphors that may or may not strike a chord in some way or another, but its week one, I think we are all just ready for some football. Let’s go. Rules first:
Start Ems and Sit Ems will debut every Wednesday during the fantasy season. If you want to know if you should start Tom Brady, Arian Foster, or Calvin Johnson, ask your mom, girlfriend, or a person you know with hardly any football knowledge and they will be able to help you with that decision. These are typically middle of the road to low end guys who could surprise or may have some advantage we thought might be valuable to point out. Conversely, we won’t tell you to sit a fullback or the backup QB. Any questions? No time, sorry, we have football matters to attend to. Down, set………..
Jake Locker – TEN vs. NE: 292 yards per game. 292. Per game. That was the average total that they New England Patriots gave up through the air last season. Sure things can change over the course of a full offseason but is there some coincidence that the Packers, Patriots, Saints and Giants were the 4 teams that gave up the most passing yards per game? 4 teams that happen to all be among the top teams in the league in pass attempts? Of course there is a correlation. The Patriots throw the ball all over the field, they score points and thus get into shootouts. Conversely, their opponents are baited into a similar required strategy to repeat. Locker will get a pristine opportunity right out of the gate to test out the Titans new Run N Shoot offense they hope to excel with.
Robert Griffin III– WAS @ NO: Similar to Locker vs. the Pats, the Saints also give up their fair share of passing yards. The first game post “Bountygate” for the Saints D and the big time rookies’ first game could provide a Newton like coming out party. The Saints will be ready to score quickly and score big to prove to the world they will be ready for this season’s challenges and RG3 will be forced to air it out in return. Add in that RG3 will get to use his world class speed on the fast track in the Super Dome and his rushing stats could be a very nice addition for his week one owners.
Other guys in a pinch: Russell Wilson @ARI, Sam Bradford @DET, Josh Freeman vs. CAR
Reggie Bush – MIA @HOU: Houston had one of the tougher defenses in the league last season so this may seem like a strange start, but, Reggie Bush is completely healthy week 1 and that may be the last time for awhile. With the lack of weapons in Miami and a rookie QB at the helm, Bush will be relied upon in all aspects of the game plan. He ended last season with 4 straight 100 yard games and could be ready to finally step into the role of do it all back. We always say, opportunity is key in fantasy football, and few should get as much opportunity as the former Mr. Kardashian will week 1.
Deangelo Williams – CAR @TB: Admittedly, come draft day I wanted no part of the Panthers backfield. Between Williams, Stewart, Tolbert, and Superman Cam it seemed like a headache not worth dealing with. Well, for those of you who took the plunge, you could be handsomely rewarded for one week at least. With Jonathan Stewart out with an injury, DeAngello Williams will get the bulk of the regular against last season’s worst ranked run defense. I can’t imagine a much better scenario for an owner of a Panthers running back.
Michael Bush – CHI vs. IND: Michael Bush is not the lead dog in Chicago, and I’m sure every Matt Forte owner is starting him, but the Indy defense has not looked physical at all this preseason. I think there could be some nice rushing stats to go around and I feel pretty confident Bush will score at least one rushing touchdown. If you are playing a committee type backfield, this is a great week to play Bush, Michael this time.
Other guys in a pinch: Toby Gerhart vs. JAC, Robert Turbin @ARI (check on Lynch status), Steven Ridley @TEN
Kendall Wright – TEN vs. NE: See Jake Locker (above) and in addition take advantage of the rookie getting the start on the outside. Wright has been nothing short of spectacular all offseason according to the Titans’ coaching staff and is getting his starting shot a little earlier than expected due to the Kenny Britt suspension. Look for Wright to have a nice game in this shoot out and stake his claim to a starting role for the entire season.
Titus Young – DET vs. STL: I like Young to have a nice breakout season, and I think it gets started right out of the gates. Playing on the turf week one, the Rams have no answer on the outside for Calvin Johnson, as if anyone in the league really does, and Titus Young will be running free all day long. I really like Stafford to light up the scoreboard through the air with Kevin Smith nursing an ankle injury and the Detroit backfield in shambles.
Justin Blackmon – JAC @MIN: My second wide receiver rookie, but this one with the bigger name and pedigree. The Jags plan to line Blackmon up all over the field this Sunday against the Vikings, not exactly known for their pass defense. Blaine Gabbert actually showed some semblance of an NFL QB this preseason and a great early rapport with the young wide out. The end zone visits will be tough to predict all season with the Jags, but there should be targets and yards galore for Blackmon to gobble up.
Devery Henderson – NO vs. WAS: Henderson has 8 total touchdowns of the last 4 years, not the greatest statistical achievement. The key however is his week 1 production. His last 4 years have begun with these numbers week 1:
2011: 100 yards with 1 TD
2010: 38 yards with 1 TD
2009: 103 yards with 1 TD
2008: 84 yards with 1 TD
I don’t know what it is but 4 of his 8 touchdowns over the last 4 years have come in week one. Maybe he only pays attention to the week 1 game plans or something, but if you are looking for a deeper guy, Devery has produced 4 straight years in week 1. Just sayin
Other guys in a pinch: Sidney Rice @ARI, Leonard Hankerson @NO, Brian Quick @DET
Martellus Bennett – NYG vs DAL: Motivated to perform against his former team and carve out a big role with his new team, Bennett could be in line for a nice game against the Cowboys. We have not seen Nicks up to game speed yet, so if he is held back at all due to conditioning from his offseason injury, there could be a ton of balls for Bennett to snag.
Defense Spot Starts:
Lions vs STL
Andrew Luck – IND @CHI: Everything about Luck has impressed me so far up to this point. I, like everyone else seemingly in the history of world, think he will be an absolute stud at some point soon and will probably be too good to ever need to be listed in this article. Not today. Not in his first real NFL game against the Bears, in Chicago. No thanks.
Peyton Manning – DEN vs PIT: First game back, Sunday night football, and he should be hugely motivated to have an amazing game. There is another particularly motivated group in this game that worries me a bit however. Like a Pittsburgh Steelers team that was knocked out of the playoffs a season ago by one Denver Broncos team. If you don’t think the Steelers plan of attack will be to hit Manning early and often and test that neck you are fooling yourself more than Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder. If you drafted Manning as part of a platoon, it might be a good chance to roll with the other guy. If not, maybe keep your expectations low and hope to be surprised.
Other guys who might get pinched: Matt Schaub vs. Miami, John Skelton vs. SEA, Andy Dalton @BAL
Cedric Benson – GB vs SF: Benson might be a huge lift to the Green Bay offense. Maybe he gives them the rushing presence they lacked last season and will bring as aspect of balance to help Aaron Rodgers be great. For the Packers fans, congrats, that sounds great. This is fantasy football. I’m not starting Cedric Benson against the 49ers defense, period.
Beanie Wells – ARI vs SEA: The most impressive team this preseason was the Seattle Seahawks. Yea, so what. Well, they were also the most impressive defense and now we are getting somewhere. Teams will continue to focus on two things against the Cardinals: guard Larry Fitzgerald and stop the run. The Hawks have the secondary to focus on Fitz without as much help as most teams and will be able to send more people into the box to stop the run. Between the defense, Beanie’s injury woes, and his explosive back up Ryan Williams, I’d look elsewhere.
All Washington Running Backs: This is a mess. I heard the Chris Cooley story the other day (he walked up to Ryan Torain in the locker room last season before a game and said he needed Torain to do well because he was starting him that week against his wife in his fantasy league. Roy Helu went on to rush for 140+ with 2 TDS) and when a guy on the team is getting screwed over, why should any of us take a shot?
Other guys who might get pinched: Isaac Redman at DEN, Adrian Peterson vs. JAC, CJ Spiller @NYJ
Antonio Brown – PIT @DEN: Going out on a limb a bit with this one considering how hot he has been this season so far but I think he draws Champ. I don’t know how involved Mike Wallace will be in the route tree in his new offense and if I was Denver I would focus on stopping Brown with my number 1 guy. If that is the case, I think Big Ben tries to spread things around anymore as Champ is still devastating to fantasy receiver numbers.
Miles Austin – DAL @NYG: Call me a worry wart but something about this guy’s hammys scares me. The last thing anybody wants week 1, or any week really, is to start a guy and expect something great, only to have him leave in the second quarter with 2 catches for 17 yards. I would feel much better seeing Miles get through a full game’s worth of action unscathed before I felt good about putting him in my starting lineup.
Randy Moss – SF @GB: His old rival, week 1, and a potential shoot out. All signs seem to be point to start right? Not for me. Starting or not, Moss is expected to play about 20-25 plays. I still have yet to see Alex Smith throw a great deep ball and I don’t have ANY confidence in Moss getting my stats in the middle of the field. It sounds enticing, it sounds appealing, and like it could be a lot of fun. How does 1 catch for 13 yards sound at the end of the day? Think about it.
Other guys who might get pinched: Santonio Holmes vs. BUF, Greg Little vs. PHI, Laurent Robinson @MIN
Jermichael Finley – GB vs SF: Not only does Finley go up against some of the best linebackers in the league on the 49ers defense, he is also possible getting some of his snaps taken away by DJ Williams. The coaches have been loving DJ Williams and want to get him rotating with Finley more often. Not good news for J Fin.
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