Hey peoples. Welcome to another round of completely accurate Fantasy Football predictions from the staff here at Titan Sized. As usual, David Fleming, Matt Ward, and myself, Jason Peters, are here to lead you through the murky waters of fantasy troubles and help steer you towards the path to victory. Also, we will now be highlighting our PPR player of the week, for those of you that indulge. As always, let’s take a look back before we look forward.
Week 4 Recap: Standard ESPN Scoring
Start ‘em – Vincent Jackson – 16 points
Sit ‘em – Tony Romo – 6 points
Sleeper – Cedric Benson – 10 points
Waiver Wire Pickup – Jermaine Gresham – 4 points
Start ‘em – Jordy Nelson – 15 points
Sit ‘em – Trent Richardson – 15 points
Sleeper – Josh Freeman – 13 points
Waiver Wire Pickup – Ramses Barden – 3 points
Start ‘em – Ray Rice – 8 Points
Sit ‘em – Shonn Greene – 3 Points
Sleeper – Daniel Thomas – 0 Points
Waiver – Buccaneers – -3 Points
Week 4 Predictions
Matt: Ryan Mathews vs. New Orleans Saints – Mathews was one of those popular picks in the offseason. Everyone was looking for a breakout year from the San Diego back. Then one carry into the preseason, and he was out with a broken clavicle. He has played for 2 weeks now, and he has yet to show any breakout potential. This week he is running against a very weak Saints run defense that has been getting hammered every week. For you PPR players – Mathews has much added value in the passing game. Look for Mathews to get 100+ rushing yards with 3-5 receptions for an added 40 yards. He should find the endzone at least once in all that yardage.
Jason: Maurice Jones-Drew vs. Chicago Bears – After numerous failed selections in the past weeks, I’m bucking the common logic and saying go ahead and start MJD. Why, you ask? Simple: When the Bears start their inevitable run against the Jaguars defense, and Blaine Gabbert and the passing game are unable to get anything going, The Human Bowling Ball is going to go full steam ahead and explode to get his team back in the game. MJD is the one and only true offensive threat the Jaguars have on offense, and as such, the team will look to him to pull them out of the proverbial well.
David: Robert Griffin III vs. Atlanta Falcons - Through 4 weeks in 2012, RGIII is the leader in fantasy points in basically all league formats. He’s shown pocket poise and the ability to throw the ball downfield, as well as added versatility as a runner in the red zone. This week he faces the high octane Falcon’s offense and Matt Ryan, who will shred the Redskins’ 2nd worst pass defense (326 passing yards per game). Expect a true barnburner of a game, and RGIII will have to put up ridiculous numbers for his ‘skins to have any chance of winning.
Jason: Mike Vick vs. Pittsburgh Steelers – Vick hasn’t exactly set the world on fire this year, and this week shouldn’t reverse course for the man. Thankfully, he did manage to avoid turning the ball over to the benefit of his real-life team, but interceptions don’t kill fantasy weeks for quarterbacks; a lack of touchdowns does. A player that throws 1 TD to 0 INT’s (like Vick did last week) would score 4 points plus yardage in standard leagues; a player that throws 4 TD’s to 3 INT’s would score 10 points in the same league. That’s a 250% increase in points for the businessmen and accounting majors amongst us. Vick has a total of 4 touchdowns on the season, and even if he makes five after this week, it won’t do a whole lot for your team.
David: BenJarvus Green-Ellis vs. Miami Dolphins - There are few certainties in the NFL. One of them: you just can’t run on the Miami Dolphins. Surprising right? Through 4 weeks, the Dolphins have allowed a meager 56.8 yards per game and 2 touchdowns on the ground. While it’s difficult to bench a running back that sees 20.5 rushes per game, Miami is allowing only 2.5 yards per carry this season. The Bengals will abandon the run game early, going to AJ Green often as they avoid the stout run defense of the Dolphins.
Matt: CJ Spiller vs. San Francisco 49ers – In the first game of the regular season, Fred Jackson got hurt which opened the door for “Spiller Time”, and he did not disappoint his fantasy owners. He took the added workload and piled up the fantasy points. In week 3, Spiller injured his shoulder and it looked like it might take weeks to heal. Like a soldier, he came back in week 4 ready to play. However, Fred Jackson also made his return. Spiller’s touches are much reduced with Jackson back in the fold, and I am not convinced that he is anywhere close to 100%. To add insult to injury, the Bills are running against the 49ers defense that has been punishing running backs for 2 straight years. If you have other options – you may want to give Spiller the week off. Look for 40 yards rushing with 2 receptions for 15 yards.
Sleeper of the Week
David: Domenik Hixon vs. Cleveland Browns - With Hakeem Nicks still ailing from a knee injury, Hixon picked up the slack last week against the Eagles, tallying 6 catches on 11 targets for 114 yards. Nicks is again questionable this week, and coach Coughlin sounded less than optimistic on Monday when asked about the progress of Nicks’ injury. With Ramses Barden also questionable with concussion symptoms, expect Hixon to once again excel as the #2 receiver, adding a touchdown to his total from last week.
Matt: Kyle Rudolph vs. Tennessee Titans – It’s hard to call Kyle Rudolph a sleeper at this point in the season. He is clearly a favorite target of QB Christian Ponder, and he has put up some solid fantasy games thus far for Minnesota. He is lining up against a Tennessee Titans defense that is struggling to contain athletic Tight Ends (see Dante Rosario’s 3 TDs in week 2). I firmly believe that the Titans defense is full of potential, but until they can put it together, you have to bet against them. I suspect Rudolph will snag 5 passes for 50 yards and a TD.
Jason: Brian Hartline vs. Cincinnatti Bengals – For those of you not paying attention, Hartline had a 12-catch, 253 yard, 1 touchdown game last week. That was good enough for 31 points and a victory for near everyone that started him. This week, Miami faces a Bengals defense that has given up an average of 28 points per week. Look for Hartline to continue rewarding those who play him, and continue his ascent to Fantasy stardom.
Waiver Wire Pickup of the Week
Matt: Ty Hilton (owned in 1.1% of ESPN leagues) – Austin Collie is officially out for the rest of the season. Reggie Wayne is the clear cut WR1 on the Colts and has great chemistry with rookie QB Andrew Luck. When Collie went down in week 3, everyone expected Donnie Avery to be the incumbent. However, it was Hilton that stepped up to be the next best receiving option on the Colts. Drafted in this year’s draft out of Florida International, Hilton was known among the draft experts as a talented, speedy receiver with good hands. However, they also saw some bust-potential because of his small school background. He burned the Jaguars secondary for 100+ yards and a TD in week 3, and he may have some value as the season progresses.
Jason: Kevin Kolb (Owned in 12% of ESPN leagues) – As someone that owned and was forced to start Kolb for roughly half a season last year, I am just as surprised as anyone to include him on this list. However, Kolb is currently tied with Mike Vick in total points for the season, and Vick is owned by well more than 12% of the league. Vick also doesn’t have Larry Fitzgerald to throw to. If you’re in a deep league or in a tough position for one reason or another at quarterback, you could do far worse than Kolb, and if injuries mount over the season, his value will only rise.
David: Brian Hartline, WR Dolphins (owned in 65.6% of ESPN leagues) - His 65.6% ownership may lead one to assume he won’t be available in any leagues, but his ownership percentage spiked just this week as he exploded for 253 receiving yards and 1 TD. Hartline leads the league in receiving yards (455) and has been targeted 48 times, just 1 behind the two league leaders. With no other offensive weapons in Miami besides Reggie Bush, Tannehill has zeroed in on Hartline as his go-to receiver. If Hartline happens to be available in your league, snatch him up and feel confident about starting him in a pinch.
PPR Player of the Week
David: Percy Harvin vs. Tennessee Titans - Harvin is currently 3rd in receptions in 2012 with 30. He has blazing speed, versatility, and is tough to bring down in the open field. All these characteristics spell doom for a Titans defense that has serious tackling issues. The Vikings have been utilizing Harvin in the backfield as well, but with AP getting healthier by the day, I expect the Vikings to get Harvin involved in other ways, namely screen passes and short slants.
Matt: Eric Decker vs. New England Patriots – When the Broncos opened up the checkbook for Peyton Manning, everyone knew that meant brighter days ahead for all Broncos receivers. Peyton loves those speedsters that know how to run a precise route, and Decker fits the bill. He doesn’t catch many deep balls, but he is getting plenty of looks on the high percentage short throws. If you play in a PPR league, every catch is gold, and the yardage is a bonus. Decker has been targeted 35 times through 4 games, and he has hauled in 24 of those passes. He is averaging 6 receptions per game, and the Broncos have too many weapons for Decker to draw much double coverage. Look for this game against the Patriots to be of the high scoring variety with Manning throwing to his safety valve more often than normal. I’m going out on a limb to predict 10 receptions for 100 yards and a TD this week. PPR GOLD!
Jason: Danny Amendola vs. Arizona Cardinals – Amendola has 31 catches through 4 weeks, which averages out to just under 8 catches a week. By comparison’s sake, Brandon Gibson, Bradford’s second-leading target, has 10 catches through 4 weeks. The Rams aren’t exactly an offensive juggernaut, but with Jackson’s health on the decline, Amendola should be the recipient of a large part of the overall yardage for a sub-par offense.
Now of course none of this would be as fun for any of us if you didn’t let us know what you think about our picks, or curse us for a blown recommendation, so be sure to note the following Twitter-related contact info:
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