By The Hudsonian (Joshua Hudson) & The Commish (Cole)
The Commish and I sit down, ready to record a podcast to preview this week’s games for all of you, and we get word that Uncle Odeee decided to beat up Richey in a wrestling match and he was out of commission last night. We were fine with recording minus Richey, if anything because we are definitely going to give him some hell for missing it.
So instead of a podcast, we’ll give you some general knowledge on the weekend slate of games that you can read in five or ten minutes versus listening to us ramble for more than an hour about funny things that don’t always involved football. Sounds like a win for everyone reading. Send your “thank yous” to Uncle Odeee on Snapchat (@clubfantasyffl).
Since there is a separate column with the Thursday preview (see how well we did!), this will be the Sunday and Monday night games. Onward! (Positional rankings of players are in parentheses.)
Colts-Jags (in London, 9:30a EST)
Jacksonville’s record in London? 1-2. Blake Bortles (9th) looks to right the Jaguars offense, and what better defense to do it against! What will T.Y. Hilton (10th) do for an encore? The Commish is less optimistic with Hilton being covered by Jalen Ramsey throughout much of this contest, but I think he gets at least 6 catches and approaches 100 yards. – The Hudsonian
DeAndre Hopkins (5th) and Lamar Miller (7th) are must starts every week in every format. But until Brock Osweiler (25th) shows me he can be trusted I’m tempering my expectations for all Texans. Against the Patriots, Osweiler seemed to only look to Hopkins and the wideout caught several poorly thrown balls that many of his peers wouldn’t have. Also, don’t be so quick to discount this Titans defense. They held the Lions and Raiders largely in check in weeks 2 and 3.
Offensively the Titans’ prospects improved significantly with the news that J.J. Watt will miss the game and many more months. And if Delanie Walker (12th) is able to play, his teammates’ value skyrockets. Still, DeMarco Murray (10th) and Walker should be your only starts. – The Commish
The Kirk Cousins (3rd) extension tour continues! He got back on track last week and what better team to play to provide an encore? DeSean Jackson (22nd), Jordan Reed (2nd) and Jamison Crowder (29th) are all nice plays here. Will we see a second impressive showing from Terrelle Pryor (28th)? I’m guessing yes. – The Hudsonian
How weird is it that if Russell Wilson (24th) was completely healthy that you’d roll him out this week against the Jets and anticipate huge numbers? The Jets passing defense ranks 25th in the league and Darrelle Revis suddenly seems human. That said, Wilson is not completely healthy and the offensive line is struggling to protect him. Bench Wilson this week, but start Christine Michael (15th) and Doug Baldwin (17th) with confidence, who are producing in spite of the problems around them.
What’s the cure for a six-interception performance? I’m not sure, but I know it’s not playing the Seattle Seahawks. Obviously you’re sitting Ryan Fitzpatrick (27th) this week, and starting Matt Forte (14th) and Brandon Marshall (26th). – The Commish
Bills HC Rex Ryan went undercover to try and coerce Julian Edelman (18th) into divulging some tips about the Patriots game plan. If that doesn’t scream “I’m scared,” I don’t know what does. LeGarrette Blount (6th) will be a rollin’ on Sunday. – The Hudsonian
Cam Newton (1st) barely looked Kelvin Benjamin’s way last week against the Vikings. One target, zero catches. I repeat, one target for Kelvin Benjamin (11th). I’m no NFL coach but not targeting your wide receiver in a tight end’s body seems foolish. Cam said that would never happen again and KB owners are salivating at the first opportunity for Cam to deliver on that promise. The Falcons can be scored on and I expect Cam, KB and Greg Olsen (1st) to deliver. You may also consider Cameron Artis-Payne (37th) this week as Mark Ingram woke up versus Atlanta last week and Jonathan Stewart will be out again.
The Falcons should come back down to earth this week after blitzing New Orleans but I do expect Julio Jones (7th) to rebound. He’s not 100% but the Falcons will eventually have to remember that he’s Julio Freaking Jones and start getting him the ball more. Carolina’s stout interior defense will cause problems for Devonta Freeman (12th) and Tevin Coleman (19th), so don’t expect the same performances out of either of the Dirty Bird backs this week. – The Commish
The Baltimore Ravens defense (20th) looks legit and they get a big test this week in Derek Carr (13th) and the Raiders offense. I wouldn’t be confident with Latavius Murray (25th), but give me some Michael Crabtree (19th) all day! Jimmy Smith will likely be on Cooper (24th) most of the day, so Crabtree will do what he does best. Your Ravens offense should be fine, but I’m highest on Dennis Pitta (4th). – The Hudsonian
Matthew Stafford (2nd) may just be the most undervalued quarterback in fantasy and in the NFL this season. Granted, the Lions are 1-2, but it’s because of Stafford that they’re not 0-3. His connection with Marvin Jones ((4th) has stunned yours truly and Josh, as both of us had him ranked in the 30s or 40s this year. Against a porous Chicago defense (29th), look for Stafford, Jones and Eric Ebron (13th) to have big games.
You’re starting Alshon Jeffrey (6th) because he’s your number 1 wide receiver but also because he actually showed chemistry with Brian Hoyer (14th) last week. I’m most intrigued by Jordan Howard (23rd). Long-rumored to be the future starting running back for Chicago, Howard gets his chance as Jeremy Langford is injured. If there’s any defense to make a statement against in your debut as starter, it’s Detroit and their league-leading 5.1 yards per carry allowed to opposing running backs, and I am starting Howard in a few leagues and in my daily lineup. – The Commish
Trevor Siemian (11th) should be a nice streaming option this week. The Bucs defense (23rd) isn’t without their problems. I like Demaryius Thomas (20th), Emmanuel Sanders (25th) and C.J. Anderson (3rd) a lot in this game. Jameis Winston (17th) will have problems getting Mike Evans (16th) the ball, but I think Adam Humphries (52nd) has a sneaky good game. – The Hudsonian
These two teams just put up monster numbers versus the Bucs in consecutive weeks. One of them comes back down to earth and the other rises like a…Phoenix…after a poor performance last week. Look for David Johnson (2nd) to explode and for Carson Palmer (15th) to have a nice bounce back. This game shouldn’t be close.
I don’t have much to say about the Rams. Last week was an outlier. You have to start Todd Gurley (17th) if you own him, but there’s nothing else on this team worth discussing. – The Commish
Start your Saints (Drew Brees – 7th; Willie Snead – 23rd; Mark Ingram – 4th; Michael Thomas – 47th; Coby Fleener – 3rd). Minus Brandin Cooks (14th). Start your Chargers (Phillip Rivers – 4th; Travis Benjamin – 8th; Tyrell Williams – 27th; Melvin Gordon – 1st; Hunter Henry – 16th). All of them. – The Hudsonian
Regarding San Francisco, please see my assessment of the Rams and replace Gurley with Carlos Hyde (16th).
The Cowboys, on the other hand, offer some interesting value. This may be the game that causes Cowboy fans and the media to begin seriously questioning if Romo should start when he comes back, because I think Dak Prescott (18th) has a huge day. Although Bryant’s injury is scary, Prescott has chemistry with Jason Witten (9th) and Cole Beasley (37th) and Ezekiel Elliott (8th) should continue his role as workhorse. – The Commish
Chiefs-Steelers (Sunday Night)
The Chiefs defense (15th) won’t intercept Ben Roethlisberger six times, will they? Marcus Peters will look to shut down Antonio Brown (2nd) in this game. I say they both get theirs. Le’Veon Bell (5th) won’t be given a 30 touch workload as many think. I’d bet on it. You’ll still see some DeAngelo Williams (40th) being worked in while Bell knocks off the rust. – The Hudsonian
Giants-Vikings (Monday Night)
I can’t believe I’m saying this but you may want to consider benching Eli Manning (16th) this week. In fact, the only Giant I’m starting is Odell Beckham, Jr. (12th), because I have to. This Vikings defense (5th) is beyond legit at this point and will cause trouble for Sterling Shephard (40th), Victor Cruz (54th), and whichever pizza delivery guy is the lead back for the Giants this weekend.
Kyle Rudolph (8th) has become a viable starting option since Sam Bradford (23rd) came to Minnesota and there’s no need to bench him this week. The Giants are roughly middle of the league (15th) against tight ends but Bradford and Rudolph’s chemistry warrants a start for Rudolph. Speaking of Bradford, sit him this week. The underrated Giants defense has limited quarterbacks of higher caliber to just three passing touchdowns this season. You can find better options. – The Commish