Playbook Week 10 Fantasy Tips Part 2

Fantasy Tips, Inside the Game, Playbook War Room

NO@ATL

Julio Jones, WR Atlanta

What we like:

  • Physical freak, allows him to run every route on the field and make plays after the catch
  • Not hesitant to run routes over the middle of the field
  • Tony Gonzalez and Roddy White draw a lot of attention in the passing game, single coverages for Julio Jones

Will it continue:  Jones and Matt Ryan seem to have a great chemistry together; so much so that it has made Roddy White’s production seem to suffer.  If Jones can continue to stay healthy, involvement in this offense should continue to blossom. With teams being unable to key on stopping him and having Tony Gonzalez to stretch the seam, Jones will have a lot of room to do his work over the middle of the field.

TEN@CAR

Damien Williams, WR Tennessee

Damien Williams (AP)

What we like:

  • Nate Washington is banged up (hip) and draws a lot of attention from opposing defenses
  • Williams displays a lot of quickness: gets off the line well and accelerates out of his cuts
  • Has developed a chemistry with Matt Hasselbeck around the goaline and seems to have a knack for finding the soft spot in zones when the field shrinks

Will it continue: From what we have seen out of the Titans offense, we think it is a big risk to put too much stock in Williams. First and foremost Hasselbeck does not have a go-to guy (with Kenny Britt injured) and has been distributing the ball around a lot. Williams has gotten lost in the WR shuffle at times and has had stretches during games where he is not on the field. We think that his positives do not really outweigh the negatives and would suggest looking elsewhere for fantasy production.

BUF@DAL

Laurent Robinson (AP)

Laurent Robinson, WR Dallas

What we like:

  • Miles Austin is going to be out for 2-3 weeks, at least, so right away Robinson’s targets increase dramatically.
  • Has very good hands even when he is not wide open, which has started to earn the trust of Tony Romo
  • Makes up for his lack of speed by using his body well. Gets in good positions to catch the ball on short and intermediate routes by shielding off the defender with his body.

Will it continue: As long as Miles Austin is out we like what we have seen from Laurent Robinson and how he fits in the Dallas offense. The Cowboys are not an overly explosive team that throws the ball down the field often ; Tony Romo is perfectly fine with getting the ball to an open WR instead of hanging in pocket to take a shot down field. This plays right into Robinson’s strengths as a WR. Teams are going to continue to key on Dez Bryant and Jason Witten, which should allow Robinson to do a lot of the dirty work underneath. His chemistry with Romo is only going to improve, which will help his numbers increase.

ARI@PHI

Brent Celek, TE Philadelphia

Brent Celek (AP)

What we like:

  • He has a versatile skill set and has shown an ability to get down the field and beat one on one coverage against a LB.
  • His hands have been very reliable and Michael Vick is starting to trust him more and more.
  • The Eagles have included a new wrinkle in their offense and have started to utilize Celek in their screen game. With teams keying so much on slowing down the Eagles other weapons, Celek has been able to sneak in around the line of scrimmage to add to his repertoire.

Will it continue: Celek had high hopes going into last year, but his production really fell off as the year progressed. With how things are panning out right now we don’t see any reason he can’t continue to be a lower tier fantasy starter. Keep in mind that the Eagles have so many weapons on offense that Celek could get lost in the shuffle from game to game, especially if DeSean Jackson starts to heat up as the season wears on.

 

HOU@TB

LeGarrette Blount (AP)

LeGarrette Blount, RB Tampa Bay

What we like:

  • Blount looks to have no ill-effects from his knee troubles. He was getting downhill well last week and did not hesitate at all from contact.
  • The Bucs are showing a devotion to running the ball and have started using a two TE unbalanced formation to get Blount the ball. This gives them a lot of wrinkles to work from because it is such a difficult formation to defend.
  • Josh Freeman has not played up to expectations this season and clearly is not ready to carry a team on his own. Blount should help the offense improve as a whole.

Will it continue: Blount looked great in the beginning of the season. He is a very powerful downhill runner and is a handful for defenders to tackle. While he might lose some touches to Kregg Lumpkin, especially in the passing game, we think that this will allow Blount to remain fresh for the 2nd half of the season. He should be fine to put into your starting lineups and will continue to give you consistent yardage on the ground mixed in with an occasional touchdown.

BAL@SEA

Torrey Smith (AP)

Torrey Smith, WR Baltimore

What we like:

  • His speed makes him a threat to score every time he touches the ball
  • Teams are playing a lot of off coverage on Smith, so to counter the Ravens have started to utilize him in the screen game
  • He is starting to earn the trust of Flacco as the Ravens offense continues to improve. Generated 17 targets, catching 8, in the past two weeks.

Will it continue: Smith is a prototypical boom or bust type player. The Ravens utilize his speed to keep defenses from clamping down on Anquan Boldin and their two TEs. Flacco does not hesitate to throw him a few passes down the field, but his inability to be involved in the shorter passing game make him a real fantasy risk. From what we saw in the screen game, Smith does not move well enough laterally to pose a real threat to defenses in this aspect.

DET@CHI

Earl Bennett (AP)

Earl Bennett, WR Chicago

What we like:

  • Bennett displayed a reliable set of hands and was able to snag some passes that were not entirely accurate
  • Has started to emerge as the 3rd WR in this offense. He is a reliable possession guy that should help Jay Cutler compensate for a shoddy OL.

Will it continue: We were not overly impressed with the way Bennett got off the line of scrimmage the past few weeks. He was not really gaining separation from the Eagles DBs on Monday night, which made him a difficult guy to target consistently. Right now we think it is safe to say he will generate a few catches each week, but we do not anticipate he will get enough looks to warrant a starting spot.

NYG@SF

Jake Ballard, TE New York Giants

Jake Ballard (AP)

What we like:

  • Ballard is a big body and has reliable hands. He has shown numerous times that he can take a hit and still hold onto the ball.
  • He is deceiving as a WR. Teams have to respect his blocking first and foremost, so they are not always anticipating he will become a receiver.
  • He has shown an ability to high point passes, which make up for his lack of speed.
  • Eli Manning looks like he is starting to trust Ballard. The few times Ballard ran routes down the field he wasn’t necessarily open, but Eli trusted him enough to come down with a pass that wasn’t near his reach.

Will it continue: Ballard seems to have emerged in a Kevin Boss type role. He is not overly athletic, but has started to earn the trust of Eli. As the past few weeks have shown, the Giants play their best football when Eli has a reliable target in the middle of the field. His ability to attack the ball in the air helps his value, but do not expect any outrageous numbers from him. He should warrant a bench spot on fantasy teams and could sneak into the starting lineup if the matchup warrants it.

MIN@GB

Michael Jenkins (AP)

Michael Jenkins, WR Minnesota

What we like:

  • Jenkins has a big body and a large wingspan which make him easy to find on the field.
  • Has enough speed that defenses have to keep an eye on him down the field. He has shown good discipline in selling double moves so that the CB or S acknowledges them.

Will it continue: Jenkins has been too hit or miss for us to be completely sold on him. He seems to be at his best when he can get down the field and utilize his size and speed combo. The Vikings have been utilizing him more as a possession WR, but he has yet to show a consistent ability to get open across the middle of the field. We would avoid Jenkins for now.

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