Fantasy Football Truths
Count me as one of those guys who completely ignores the bye week when it comes time to draft my fantasy football team. I’ve always been of the opinion that I can scramble and make up for guys being out, and I would never take a lesser player over a better one just to be better covered for the bye weeks. Of course, that leads to situations like the one I have in one league this week, where my team loses approximately three-quarters of my normal starting lineup.
Luckily, the combination of some injured starters and teams making personnel changes has produced some excellent fill-in candidates around the league. Some of the guys listed below might even be worth keeping as the season progresses.
John Beck, quarterback, Washington Redskins: Beck’s debut as a starter with the Skins produced solid passing yardage with one score rushing and one passing. He’s a bit of a scrambler and can pick up those essential quarterback rushing yards that pad fantasy stats something fierce. (See Tebow, Tim.)
With a comfortable matchup against a shaky Bills pass defense this week, Beck should put up solid enough numbers to get you through the week.
Knowson Moreno, running back, Denver Broncos: Just when you thought you could finally write Moreno off, Willis McGahee goes down with an injury that will likely put him on the shelf for a few weeks. What you likely won’t get from Moreno are a lot of rushing touchdowns, not with Tebow the likely goal-line ball carrier.
What you will get are some receiving yards on screens and such. Maybe, just maybe, he’ll be able to ride the positive vibes in Denver to a few solid weeks in a row.
Leon Washington, running back, Seattle Seahawks: If you’re looking for running backs on the waiver wire, the main thing you want are guys who will get touches. Well, with Marshawn Lynch out, Washington fits that bill. He has passed Justin Forsett on the depth chart in Seattle, and he is a capable receiver out of the backfield as well.
With some big-play ability thanks to his kick-returning skills, it’s not out of the realm of possibility for Washington to break a big one on his way to a big day.
Michael Jenkins, wide receiver, Minnesota Vikings: Jenkins was always a guy who was a bit disappointing in Atlanta, especially considering his lofty draft status. In Minnesota, with expectations significantly lowered, he has performed admirably.
Suddenly, with Percy Harvin injured and Bernard Berrian released, Jenkins is the number No. 1 guy in a passing game rejuvenated with Christian Ponder under center. He can fill in during the byes and provide depth after that.
Jabar Gaffney, wide receiver, Washington Redskins: We’re back with the Redskins for this choice. Santana Moss is likely going to miss significant time, so Gaffney, who has been steady if unspectacular in Washington, is now a major player in the passing game.
This is a guy who has posted big fantasy numbers in the past, doesn’t seem to have lost any speed, and will be getting significantly more targets in the weeks to come. He might not light it up, but he’ll get you something.
Jared Cook, tight end, Tennessee Titans: This one is more of a one week deal, since Tennessee’s offense seems to be in flux from week-to-week. This week, however, the Titans are playing the Colts, who were woeful against the Saints in the national Sunday night game.
Cook caught Tennessee’s only touchdown in its loss to Houston last week, and he has been steadily coming on in the offense. Without a lot of other options, he could be the beneficiary of the Colts defensive haplessness.
I’m predicting a 300-yard game for Beck this week, touchdowns from at least three of the five runners and receivers — and at least one 100-yard game from that group.
It’s the bye week, people. You’re going to have to roll the dice right along with me.