|Fantasy Football: Week 15 starts, sits||12.14.12 at 9:25 am ET|
Welcome to the Week 15 starts and sits. It’s semifinals week in most fantasy football leagues, so all decisions have major consequences. As always, I have done my best to list players that are on the edge of lineups in 12-team leagues. I’m sure I didn’t get to every player you have questions about. And, toward that end, feel free to consult our full lineup rankings at Rotobahn.com. I’ll also be here on Sunday morning for another chat and hopefully it will be as active as it was last week.
Josh Freeman, Buccaneers at Saints
Freeman has come back to earth from a fantasy perspective. Though he’s hasn’t fallen apart, he’s only had one-plus game in the last five weeks for fantasy purposes. The Saints defense was playing with urgency and adrenaline in recent weeks, but now that New Orleans effectively is finished, I expect that enthusiasm to wane. Freeman has a good chance to succeed and is a solid start in 12-team leagues.
Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers at Cowboys
He showed last week that he is capable of posting solid numbers, and we think the Cowboys secondary can be had right now. If you need him, Big Ben is a quality option in 12-team leagues and a viable one in smaller leagues, too.
Matt Schaub, Texans vs. Colts
After last week’s debacle at Foxboro, we expect Schaub to bounce back. We also expect the Texans to do what they can to avoid overusing Arian Foster, who is racking up immense carry and touch totals in 2012. Schaub should do well in Week 15 and he can start for you in 12-team leagues as a QB1 if you need him.
Jay Cutler, Bears vs. Packers
If all you want is some upside, then Cutler might be an answer, but if you want to avoid risk, then you should stay away from Chicago’s quarterback in Week 15. He struggled against the Packers in Week 2, but the bigger reason is that the guy is just too banged up to count on. In 2012 Cutler has battled concussion symptoms, knee issues and a neck injury. The two latter problems are fresh and could affect him this week. Based on Rotobahn’s current rankings, you have 18 more palatable options. Consider using one if you can.
Jake Locker, Titans vs. Jets
As with Cutler, if all you want is a guy who might post a good number, you could go with Locker, but we’re worried about his downside. Rex Ryan defenses cause confusion, and the young quarterback already has serious issues with accuracy. We’d avoid Locker this week.
The stakes simply are too high.
|Fantasy Football: Week 14 waiver wire||12.04.12 at 9:45 am ET|
Welcome to the Week 14 waiver wire. We’re definitely switching our priorities now. The wire will begin to shrink from here on out as I focus more on players with playable upside. The byes are long gone and most leagues have dwindled to six teams or less after the elimination of non-playoff teams. That means there is less competition on the waiver wire and less teams with needs, too. Congratulations to those who are still alive. Come on over to Rotobahn for more advice. I’ll be adding players throughout the day as I work through the Week 13 games. I’ll also be adding an article on running back handcuffs for those who are fine-tuning their rosters to survive the playoffs. For those who have some tough lineup choices, we will be holding another Sunday morning chat this weekend at 11 a.m. Stop by if you need any help.
Colin Kaepernick, 49ers
He has a solid schedule and he’s a dual threat at the quarterback position. His ability to score with his feet was a big factor in Week 13, and it kept those who started him competitive despite his struggles throwing the ball. Coach Jim Harbaugh already has named Kaepernick as the starter for Week 14.
Russell Wilson, Seahawks
The rookie got it done again, and he did it on the road against a very tough defense. Wilson now is a player who should be owned in all leagues. He can help you down the stretch if quarterback is your weakness. Wilson is looking like the biggest steal of the 2012 draft right now.
Carson Palmer, Raiders
Palmer bounced back nicely in Week 13 and he has a few good matchups left on his schedule if you need some help at quarterback. Palmer has had a solid year in spite of all the chaos around him. There’s no reason to think he’ll collapse now. The only thing to keep an eye on is backup QB Terrelle Pryor. If Oakland decides to give Pryor significant playing time, it could have an effect on Palmer’s stats. My guess is that we don’t see that until Week 17, but it’s worth monitoring.
Jay Cutler, Bears
He’s healthy now, and with Alshon Jeffery returning as soon as this week, we like Cutler to have a few good games the rest of the way. There are no scary matchups left on his schedule. Cutler has some value in deeper leagues.
|Fantasy Football: Week 10 waiver wire||11.05.12 at 12:45 pm ET|
Welcome to the Week 10 waiver wire. It’s been a rough eight days for yours truly. The town in which I reside still is in a state of total dysfunction in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. I’ve been staying with friends so as to be informed enough to keep informing all of you, but please excuse the early release of this week’s wire. If I had confidence that I would have connectivity Tuesday, I would wait a day longer. But sadly, I don’t. Lastly, for those who are in a position to do so, please consider donating to the Red Cross to help those who are suffering in New Jersey and New York. The extent of the damage is mind-boggling, and every cent helps.
I will be updating this column at Rotobahn on Tuesday if I have the capability, so head on over then if you are looking for more insight. Lastly, great thanks go out to our friends in Andover, Mike and Aricia, for giving us a warm place to stay for the last few days, not to mention a place to watch football and upload this article.
Carson Palmer, Raiders
We’ve been pushing him for a few weeks now as he’s been a solid fantasy contributor for most of the year. Now, with more healthy receiving options, Palmer is posting very good numbers. As I said a few weeks back, he’s cheap and he won’t hurt you. Well, he might not be cheap anymore after Week 9, but he still is available in a great many leagues, so go get him if you need some QB help in any format.
Jay Cutler, Bears
He’ll be getting WR Alshon Jeffery back soon, and with Brandon Marshall fully heated up, the Bears could be a high-powered offense sooner rather than later. Add Cutler in any format. He can be your starter going forward if you are in a pinch.
Russell Wilson, Seahawks
In big leagues, he is a guy who can provide depth and he is a solid start when the matchup is right, especially at home. Pick him up in 12-team leagues.
Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins
He is a viable fantasy asset, but the reason to consider him right now is the sweet matchup he has with Tennessee in Week 10. If you are looking for a way to replace Aaron Rodgers during his Week 10 bye, Tannehill could be your guy — in any format. He also gets Buffalo in Week 11, which is an added bonus.
John Skelton, Cardinals
In really deep formats, Skelton can be a depth player for you. With rookie WR Michael Floyd beginning to emerge along with TE Rob Housler, the Cardinals QB could be more of a fantasy factor going forward. He’s better left for 12-team and 14-team formats, but we think he will get better in the coming weeks, so he is a guy to keep an eye on for sure.
Nick Foles, Eagles
For Michael Vick owners at minimum, Foles could be the QB in Philly next week, so we’d be adding him as protection if we were dependent on Vick. Foles has plenty of upside if he was to start, so add him in any league where your success is tethered to Vick.
|Fantasy Football: Week 8 starts, sits||10.26.12 at 9:09 am ET|
Welcome to Rotobahn’s Week 8 starts and sits. Head to Rotobahn and use our full lineup rankings if we fail to cover your lineup questions here. As usual, we’ve done our best to avoid the obvious choices and to talk about players that are on the fringe of lineups in 12-team leagues. We’ll be doing a Sunday morning chat at 11 a.m. at WEEI.com, so join us if you have any last-minute issues. And if you are looking for late-breaking Sunday news, sign up to follow us on Twitter.
Good luck to all in Week 8!
Michael Vick, Eagles vs. Falcons
You are going to get Vick’s best effort this weekend against his old team. You might see an interception or two and perhaps a fumble, but barring injury, Vick will fill the stat sheet in his usual way. Don’t let all the bad press affect your lineup choices. He’s still a high-end fantasy option, and we expect solid fantasy output in Week 8. Vick is a good option in all leagues.
Jay Cutler, Bears vs. Panthers
Make sure he practices fully Friday, but we like Cutler this week if you are looking for a bye week option. He’s without Alshon Jeffery, which hurts, but Matt Forte is healthy again. Forte and Brandon Marshall should be all Cutler needs to have a solid fantasy start this week.
Matt Hasselbeck, Titans vs. Colts
This should be a competitive game, and we like Hasselbeck at home vs. a soft Indianapolis defense. He has a deep receiving corps to work with, and Chris Johnson’s resurgence gives the Titans some balance. Hasselbeck can start for you this week in 12-team leagues.
Philip Rivers, Chargers at Browns
He might be just fine, but we’re concerned with the Chargers in general. They are making a lot of knee-jerk decisions, and now coach Norv Turner is talking about being more conservative. It always worries me when teams start to doubt their identity. So while Rivers certainly is viable, we are not looking to start him this week in 10-team leagues and he’s not a great play in 12-team leagues either.
Alex Smith, 49ers at Cardinals
On the road against a good defense is not the spot to play Smith if you can avoid it. We also are concerned about his finger injury, which has been blamed for his recent struggles. Smith is a player we want to see play well again before we put him in our active lineup.
|Fantasy Football: Week 5 starts, sits||10.05.12 at 12:32 pm ET|
Welcome to Week 5. I’ve compiled some solid starts for your consideration and I’ve also highlighted some players that are poor options for one reason or another. As always, if you need further assistance, please feel free to join us at Rotobahn.com where you can consult our full lineup rankings. Good luck to all in Week 5!
Joe Flacco, Ravens at Chiefs
The Chiefs should go down pretty easily, and we think Flacco will do very well. The risk is that they simply don’t need to throw at some point. That could make having a big game tough to pull off, but we like Flacco to produce solid numbers worthy of starting for you in all formats.
Jay Cutler, Bears at Jaguars
Cutler’s Jekyll & Hyde routine continued in Week 4 as he and Brandon Marshall had a good time dealing with the Cowboys defense. The ‘Boys have a stud pass-rusher, so it’s a good sign for the Bears and Cutler, because pass protection is their Achilles’ heel. Cutler should fare well against Jacksonville in Week 5 and he can be a bye week solution for you in any league.
Andrew Luck, Colts vs. Packers
The game looks good in terms of its dynamics. Luck may have his ups and downs, but we know that the Colts will have to open it up if they want to compete with Green Bay. You won’t be seeing Donald Brown and a cloud of dust all day long. Not by a long shot. Luck is a solid play if you need bye week help.
Christian Ponder, Vikings vs. Titans
Check his health just to be sure. If Ponder is limited in Friday’s practice, then there could be some reason for concern, but he’s been very good so far and we think Tennessee is ripe for the taking as far as matchups go. The Vikings are healthy and fully loaded on offense as long as Ponder is ready to roll. He’s a strong play.
|Fantasy Football: Week 4 starts, sits||09.28.12 at 10:48 am ET|
Welcome to Rotobahn’s Week 4 starts and sits. As always, we’ve tried to avoid the obvious choices and have focused on players that represent tougher lineup choices. We’ll be releasing full lineup rankings at Rotobahn.com Friday and Saturday, so check us out this weekend if you need a little help. Good luck to all in Week 4.
Andy Dalton, Bengals at Jaguars
Dalton is rolling right now, and that should continue against a very beatable Jacksonville defense. He’s using A.J. Green as he should, but he’s also spreading the ball around to all his other targets and keeping the opposition honest. Dalton can help you in all formats this week.
Matt Schaub, Texans vs. Titans
It’s a good matchup, and the only risk we see with Schaub this week is that Houston wins too easily and goes to the ground game for most of the second half. He’s a pretty safe play in all formats if you need a QB.
Christian Ponder, Vikings at Lions
Ponder has looked very good so far and he gets WR Jerome Simpson back from suspension this week, which gives him one more quality weapon to go with Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin and Kyle Rudolph. The Lions have been shaky so far on defense, so this one should go well for Ponder.
Alex Smith, 49ers at Jets
There will be the inclination to write off the Jets defense without Darrelle Revis, but New York can still defend the pass better than a lot of teams. San Francisco is a conservative outfit and the Jets might not be able to score much at all in this one. Alex Smith may be doing a whole lot of handing off in Week 4. We see a score to Vernon Davis and a whole lot of ground and pound. You can do better.
Jay Cutler, Bears at Cowboys
The Bears need to show me they can protect Cutler before I can trust them against a team like the Cowboys, who shows up with a stud pass-rusher and two very solid cornerbacks. We like Cutler, but we don’t trust his support system in this one.
|Fantasy Football: Week 1 starts, sits||09.07.12 at 10:24 am ET|
Here are Rotobahn’s Week 1 starts and sits. These rankings are based on 12-team leagues and performance scoring. We’ve done our best to highlight players who may be either available or on the lineup bubble. After all, we all know we need to keep Tom Brady active.
If you are looking for more in-depth roster rankings, join us at Rotobahn.com, where we break things down even further.
Jay Cutler, Bears
Now well stocked with weapons, Cutler is a solid value this year. Start him in Week 1 if you have the need. We think he’ll post starter’s numbers.
Robert Griffin, Redskins
Griffin is the real deal and can play for you right away. His receivers are underrated, and TE Fred Davis is a plus option as well.
Joe Flacco, Ravens
Flacco is a guy you might find on waivers in small leagues, and he can post starter’s numbers in Week 1.
Stevan Ridley, Patriots
Ridley is going to get the rock a lot this week, so we see the big back as a good Week 1 play. Shane Vereen has been absent and the Law Firm has moved on to Cincinnati. This is Ridley’s time.
DeAngelo Williams, Panthers
The Buccaneers, who host Williams’ Panthers on Sunday, have to prove that they can stop the run. They have been very vulnerable to speed in recent years, and Williams is looking very speedy these days. Throw in a banged-up Jonathan Stewart and you have a solid recipe for success.
Michael Bush, Bears
If you are looking for an option, Bush could help. We like his chances against Indianapolis’ front seven, and we like Chicago’s chances of putting up some numbers. He’s a good flex option in bigger leagues.
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