ROLE PLAYING

There are few secrets left to uncover by this point in the season, but there are players rising up the depth chart—and others sliding down it
October 23, 2011

Tim Tebow, QB,Broncos

Kyle Orton's pesky habit of throwing to players in the wrong jerseys (seven INTs, tied for sixth most in the NFL) has forced Denver to hand the reins to the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner (POINT AFTER, page 76). Tebow's pesky shortcomings include his arm strength, his decision making and his accuracy—all factors that have led to a career completion percentage of 48.9—but fantasy players shouldn't care. Tebow won't regularly air it out for 300 yards, but like Michael Vick and Cam Newton, he'll be as likely to run for big gains and touchdowns as he is to throw for them. It won't always be pretty, but he'll pile up points.

Felix Jones, RB,Cowboys

Billed as one of the league's more dangerous weapons, Jones has proved to be most hazardous to himself—and to the fantasy players who draft him. In four injury-filled seasons the speedy back has only two games with more than 100 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. Against the Patriots, Jones left fantasy owners high and dry when he hobbled off in the first half with a high-ankle sprain. He's simply too fragile and unproductive to count on. If you're stuck with him, trade him to someone desperate for running back help. Let him hurt someone else for a change.

Greg Salas, WR,Rams

When points-per-reception (PPR) standout Danny Amendola went down with a season-ending elbow injury in the first game, it appeared that Sam Bradford had lost his safety net. Enter Salas, a fourth-round pick from Hawaii, where he was the 2010 FBS receiving leader with 1,889 yards on 119 receptions. In his last two appearances he has hauled in 12 of the 18 balls thrown his way, including eight catches for 77 yards in a loss at Lambeau Field. Now Salas will have Brandon Lloyd drawing coverage, making Salas a great fill-in for PPR leagues. Maybe it's not a net, but it's as safe as it gets in St. Louis.

Jason Hill, WR,Jaguars

Hill caught heck in September when he said Darrelle Revis was "overhyped" then sat out his showdown with the Jets' cornerback because of a hip flexor. Since then Hill has caught something else: the ball. For the first time in his five-year career he grabbed a touchdown in consecutive games, and he has given rookie QB Blaine Gabbert another outlet beside the usually covered Mike Thomas and the disappointing Marcedes Lewis. While Hill is useful as a bye-week fill-in, he's not a good play this week against the stingy Ravens defense—even though he was smart enough not to insult it.

PHOTOJACOB PAULSEN/SOUTHCREEK GLOBAL/ZUMAPRESS.COMSALAS DAYS The rookie from Hawaii has become a high-volume outlet for the Rams, helping to fill the void left by Amendola's season-ending injury.
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)