Line of scrimmage: Late QB starters, WR sleepers, more debate
You know, Dave, there's a line from a classic piece of cultural Americana when an astute young female voices her consternation at glimpsing Christmas regalia so early in the fall season. "I haven't even finished eating all of my Halloween candy," exclaimed young Sally Brown in
Phones could be ringing all over NFL sick lines this week. Miami lost their one-two QB combination, Chad Hennington -- that's Chad Henne and Chad Pennington. (Hey, give me props for not making a dangling chad joke.) Though Thanksgiving may be approaching, Kerry Collins served up more ducks Sunday than a Chinese restaurant.
Um, Dave, what are you doing?
Hey, remember, what's good for the goose ...
Block: If I had two flat tires, would I prefer the one with some tread left or the one that has blown off, leaving just the wheel? How about just racing on two tires? Neither of these two candidates gives a warm cozy feel in deep QB leagues. However, you want to err on the side of experience, of which Thigpen has more. He became the starting QB in Kansas City back in 2008 among another similar nightmare, when he replaced Damon Huard and the ever-delicate Brodie Croyle. He started 14 games, completed 55 percent of his passes and threw 18 TDs versus 12 INTs. In 2008, that was more TDs than Ben Roethlisberger, a young Matt Ryan and Jake Delhomme while playing on a team whose defense was ranked lower than a Piña Colada is on the list of manly drinks. When called upon Sunday, all Thigpen did was answer the call again, sealing the game with a TD pass to Anthony Fasano in a 4-for-6, 46-yard performance. He's got plenty of weapons around him, and good mobility.
Counter-block: We're talking sleepers here, and for that you have to dig. So I pulled out my pile driver and researched the offenses ranked in the bottom third of NFL. Then I compared their giveaway/takeaway numbers, and checked out which of those offenses aided a defense in being Top-10 fantasy defense for that particular week. The most surprising repeaters in the Top 10 were the Chargers and Giants. Four times those two teams gave a defense Top 10 fantasy points. However, the best middling offenses that resided in the Top 10 of bad were Arizona, Seattle and Carolina. Thus, the Atlanta Falcons' defense has three matchups of amazing defensive value facing Seattle once and Carolina twice (once in Week 17). These are two of the worst offenses with corresponding high giveaway numbers. The Falcons also get bottom third offenses Tampa Bay and St. Louis. Considering Atlanta has been opportunistic recently, causing five turnovers in their past three games, Atlanta is a sleeper defense to grab down the stretch. They're only 21 percent owned in Yahoo! leagues.
Clearing the pile: The 49ers were Jon's second choice, so both he and Dave like that defense as well, but the 49ers are viewed more optimistically by Yahoo! Fantasy owners, as they are 51 percent owned. Get Atlanta if you can, or New Orleans if you cannot.
Block: This sell-high receiver is ranked 21st in the league for targets with 73, yet he has had had multiple weeks of just one and two catches. He scored his first TD in Week 3, but since Week 5 has reached the end zone eight times. If I'm selling high on someone right now, it's Dwayne Bowe. Although his schedule is favorable the next three weeks, it toughens with San Diego and finishes with Oakland in Week 17. Since Bowe only catches about half his targets, he has just 39 receptions, which ranks 40th behind guys like Jermaine Gresham and Mike Thomas. Kansas City is a rush-first team, and I want my top receiver to be a sure thing down the stretch. If he's your WR2 or worse, fine, keep him. But Bowe can't get any better than this considering the team he's on. Sell high now and go get someone who is much more consistent: Reggie Wayne or Calvin Johnson or an upside play like Dez Bryant.
As for buying low, try Lance Moore. This Moore-sel of goodness has quietly compiled a first half of 35 catches on 51 targets for 448 yards and five TDs. New Orleans is starting to round into shape, and Moore has had seven-plus targets in all but three contests. Their final three matches are tough against Baltimore and then division rivals Atlanta and Tampa Bay. However, Moore scored three times in the first contests against Atlanta and Tampa Bay, and since this team cannot run, Brees will still average 35 passes per contest. Moore will be cheap and should make a solid play the rest of the year.
Clearing the pile: You clear the pile. This topic doesn't require it, so there'd be no point. Come on readers, pay attention.