After a very exciting first week of fantasy football, a number of players have emerged with more fantasy value than most people thought they would have and could be worthy of adding to most fantasy rosters.
Alex Smith, QB- Alex Smith has been a “game manager” for far too long for the 49ers. This past week against the highly touted Green Bay Packers, Smith sent a message to his doubters, “I can be more than a game manager, I am a good quarterback.” Statistically Smith posted 211 yards, 2 touchdowns and a 76.9 completion percentage. (125.6 quarterback rating) Not too shabby. And he posted 17 points. He will not be a game breaker but he will be reliable and consistent. What else can you ask for? Next week the 49ers take on the Lions, look for Smith to post a solid and similar outing this coming week.
Mark Sanchez, QB- Were the Jets playing possum all throughout the preseason? Regardless, as we are accustomed to with Sanchez, there’s going to be plenty of poor games to go along with the occasional good performance. Sanchez should be viewed as nothing more than depth as a back-up fantasy QB until he can show some consistency.
Kevin Kolb, QB- Kolb was outplayed by John Skelton last year and throughout training camp. Now he’ll take over the reigns for a team that has been struggling offensively for some time. The schedule isn’t very conducive for fantasy production either. Arizona’s next two games are in New England and at home vs. the Eagles. It clears up a bit after that, so if you’re desperate for qb depth, try to hold out on using Kolb until Week 5 and 6….unless Skelton is back.
C.J. Spiller, RB-For the first time, I’m sold on Spiller. With Fred Jackson out at least 3 weeks with an injury, it is his job. Buffalo really doesn’t have any other running backs to speak of. Spiller is also a great weapon out of the backfield for PPR leagues. Spiller may take this job and never look back.
Stevan Ridley, RB- Ridley grabbed control of the Patriots featured role in camp, and hasn’t looked back. Shane Vereen has been hurt, so Ridley will continue to take the majority of carries as long as he holds onto the ball. New England’s potent offense will spend plenty of time around the goal line and the Pats have scored an NFL high 56 rushing touchdowns over the last three seasons. Going forward, Ridley should be considered an every week start.
Alfred Morris, RB-If you really need a running back Morris is worth a pick up, but keep in mind how the Redskins running game works. week 1 could be the last week we ever hear of Alfred Morris, then again he could be a superstar the remainder of the season. Until he loses grasp of the featured role, grab Morris and squeeze him into your lineups.
Michael Bush, RB- Michael Bush’s fantasy day consisted of 12 rushes for 42 yards and two touchdowns. Matt Forte had only four more rushing attempts, and with such an even distribution of carries grabbing this backup RB could potentially turn into starting a running back on a great NFC team. Bush was drafted by Forte owners for insurance purposes, but in leagues with small benches he is floating around out there and should be considered the top pick up this week.
Randy Moss, WR-The 49ers added many new elements to their offense, trotting out multiple formations and lineups. It’s exactly this sort of ingenuity that makes Moss worthy of being a weekly play. Jim Harbaugh will find ways to get him the ball and in favorable positions to produce touchdowns. If he’s on your waiver wire, grab him.
Stephen Hill, WR- Gridiron Experts was high on Stephen Hill at the draft, during our preseason rankings and now after week one. Most fantasy experts expected the 6-foot-4 target to ease into the Jets offense and show up mid-season, yet clearly filling Plaxico’s shoes as the big target wasn’t as difficult as some had thought. After Sunday’s five catches for 89 yards and two touchdowns, his fantasy rookie value translates into a must-have potential player.
Alshon Jeffery, WR-The more defenses try to shut down Brandon Marshall, the more Alshon Jeffery will get targets. The rookie wide receiver was targeted five times, made three catches for 80 yards and a touchdown. He was on the field for 43 of the Bears 77 offensive snaps, the second most of any Bears receiver behind Marshall (71 plays)
Kevin Ogletree, WR- The 3rd wide-out spot in Dallas has produced excellent fantasy statistics and led to the emergence of Miles Austin and Laurent Robinson. Opposing defenses have their hands full with Austin, Dez Bryant and Jason Witten running routes, so Ogeltree is going to have opportunities to get open.
Brandon LaFell, WR- Brandon LaFell is a solid number two option in a Panthers passing attack who reaps the benefits of defenses covering Steve Smith. LaFell posted a solid 65 yards and a touchdown this past week against the Buccaneers. Expect similar output in terms of the number of yards and an occasional touchdown. He is a solid third WR with upside enough to maybe become a number two WR in a given week.
Billy Cundiff, PK- Cundiff has long been plagued by inaccuracy, but if Robert Griffin III can keep the Redskins offense charging up and down the field, Cundiff has solid fantasy value. As long as you’re not punished too much for missed kicks.
Cleveland Browns Defense The Browns did a solid job nabbing turnovers in Week One, But with Pro Bowl CB Joe Haden suspended for the next four games, and an offense that will be hard pressed to mount any kind of threat, leaving the defenders on the field a higher percentage of time, in the hottest part of the season. Cleveland’s DST should only be started in the deepest of fantasy leagues.
Heath Miller, TE- Miller is tough as nails with baby soft hands. He is clutch on third down and does get his targets in red zone, yet week one may have been fantasy fluke. If you need depth at the tight end position you may want to look his way, but there are probably better options.
Kyle Rudolph, TE– I think this guy is legit. He my not be putting up elite numbers YET, but i think his time is coming. Worth a pick up and a start if you waited until late in your draft to take a tight end.