If you are a subscriber to SI Gambling, you would have seen that my best bet of the day was to take the Steelers and lay the points. I can only hope that you went to the DK Sportsbook and made some money! This game was a rout from the onset as the Browns had too many injuries to compete. It got so bad that Browns QB Baker Mayfield had to be removed from the game so he wouldn't further aggravate his rib injury. The Steelers defense was magnificent, with four sacks on the day and two interceptions, including one for a TD. One note of caution though, Steelers LB Devin Bush tore his ACL and will miss the rest of the season. This might pose a problem for the Steelers run defense, especially with a game coming up with Derrick Henry and the Titans in Week 7.
Many of you might have been surprised to see the Cincinnati Bengals jump out to a big first-half lead, but that should not have been too much of a surprise considering Colts LB Darius Leonard missed his second straight game with a groin injury. Something else that should not have been a surprise is the continued excellent play of Bengals WR Tee Higgins. Higgins had six receptions for 125 yards on eight targets and has etched himself into the team's starting lineup. A deeper look into the box score shows that A.J. Green had 11 targets himself in this game, but I think Green's momentary success only will help keep Higgins' ownership low in future DraftKings contests.
I know that many fantasy football managers might have been surprised by Lions RB D'Andre Swift's success, but this big game has been brewing for some time. Swift has started to separate himself in the Lions' running back committee by breaking off big runs and showing tremendous athleticism by the goal line. Although I do anticipate the Lions giving Adrian Peterson 5-10 touches per game, I think it's safe to assume that Swift has earned about 15-18 touches and is a great player to try to acquire in trades now that the Lions BYE week has passed.
Just Play Tannehill
I listed Ryan Tannehill in my Visionary Plays article, thinking that this would be a game that the Titans would feast on offense. This was certainly true as the Titans put up over 600 yards of offense. Derrick Henry ran for 212 yards and two TDs. Tannehill threw for 364 yards and four TDs. What makes Tannehill so good is his efficiency. He went 30/41 and had a QB rating of 122.4. He keeps drives alive with his mobility and smart decision making. Up next for the Titans is a huge AFC clash with the 5-0 Pittsburgh Steelers. Tannehill will need all his smarts and mobility to avoid the Steelers pass rush.
Julio Jones Roto
As many of you know, Julio Jones was my original "Roto Child." Sadly, the Atlanta Falcons offense looked like it was stuck in the mud and a big part of the reason for this was because Jones has been dealing with a hamstring injury. Jones finally returned to the starting lineup against the Vikings and had eight catches for 137 yards and two TDs. His presence made QB Matt Ryan more comfortable and stopped him from forcing passes to Calvin Ridley. Atlanta's good play should continue in Week 7 as they play the Detroit Lions, who have struggled in the secondary all season.
Monsters of the Midway
I am as shocked as you that the Chicago Bears have a record of 5-1 after the first six weeks. Against Carolina, the Bears rushed for 63 yards on 26 carries (a 2.6 avg), and QB Nick Foles only threw for 198 passing yards. So how are the Bears winning football games? Great defense. The Bears sacked Panthers QB Teddy Bridgewater four times and intercepted him twice as they held the Panthers to 16 points. Are the Bears for real? I am not so sure. David Montgomery looks like he is running in quicksand, and Nick Foles can't seem to find an open receiver. I think we will find out a lot more over the next three weeks as the Bears play the Rams, Saints, and Titans--all teams with playoff aspirations.
Gang Green Nightmare
I know that New York Jets fans want to see head coach Adam Gase fired, but I think that the sharps in Las Vegas will be very upset if that happens. Right now, Vegas Insiders (and anyone who subscribes to SI Gambling knows that picking on the Jets is a sure-fire way to make money. Not only do the Jets have no interest in winning games, but they are also actively trading off players. Tampa Bay is acquiring DL Steve McLendon, and DL Quinnen Williams is also on the trade block. The team is Tanking for Trevor (Lawrence) and will trade Sam Darnold if that happens. For now, Jets fans are stuck in this season-long nightmare, which gets worse with every passing week.
Riverboat Ron Strikes Again
When Washington scored a late TD and made the game 20-19, head coach Ron Rivera had a decision: go for the extra point and tie the game and take it to overtime or go for the two-point conversion and try to get the win outright. Rivera chose to go for it but saw QB Kyle Allen throw an errant pass to seal the game for the Giants. Was that a bad decision? No. Washington has little to no chance of making the playoffs, and I think that Rivera wanted to give his team a chance to win the game and give them confidence moving forward. What should be taken from the game was that Kyle Allen played well, WR Terry McLaurin is a star player, and RB Antonio Gibson is growing better with each passing week. Washington may have lost this time, but if they get another opportunity in the same situation, I think there will be a better result.
Tampa has become one of the hottest (literally) sports towns in America. The Lightning won the NHL's Stanley Cup, the Rays are in the World Series, and the Bucs are not far behind in their goal to win the Super Bowl. In a game against a tough NFC rival, Green Bay, Tampa Bay dominated on offense and defense, winning convincingly 38-10. The Bucs defense intercepted Aaron Rodgers twice and sacked the Packers five times. The interesting thing was that I am not sure the Bucs played as good on offense as they are capable. WRs Mike Evans and Chris Godwin combined for six catches for 58 yards, and all fantasy football managers know that they can play much better. This week's heroes were RB Ronald Jones, who ran for 113 yards and two TDs, and TE Rob Gronkowski, who had 78 receiving yards and a TD. When Tampa puts all the pieces together, they will be a tough team to beat later in the season.
Just when you thought it was safe to cut Jimmy Garoppolo after last week's debacle in Miami, he goes out on Sunday night and throws for three TDs against the tough Rams defense. TE George Kittle led the way with 109 yards receiving and a TD, but it might not be a bad idea to see if you can trade your 49ers as their schedule is brutal in the coming weeks. The 49ers play the Patriots, Seahawks, Packers, and Saints-all good teams with playoff aspirations. As much as I love Kittle, seeing if you can get a huge return for him might help set your team up for the fantasy playoffs.
Quick Monday Notes
Fantasy football managers need to keep their eyes glued to the Monday night games to watch a few things:
- Is Andy Dalton going to drop the value of the Cowboys skill players?
- Who will be the more productive RB for the Cardinals: Kenyan Drake or Chase Edmonds?
- With Sammy Watkins out, who will step up for the Kansas City Chiefs at wide receiver: Demarcus Robinson or Mecole Hardman?
- Will Bills rookie RB Zack Moss finally show why he was drafted in the seventh round of high-stakes drafts?
Join the all new SI Fantasy+ Member Club!
Subscribe to SI Fantasy+ and you'll have our check-cashing, high-stakes experts on standby ready to answer all your questions! Head over to our Members-Only Football chat anytime, especially on Sunday morning, to submit those last-minute "who do I start" questions! Learn more about the SI Fantasy+ advantage.