By The Hudsonian, Joshua Hudson
I had some plans for a nice introduction, about how I’m getting better or worse with this column on a weekly basis, and how people are actually asking us for advice with their lineups. Things are going great here at Club Fantasy and all of us involved couldn’t be happier.
If you didn’t know, the base of operations for Club Fantasy is rooted in Florida. Yours truly happens to be a huge Hurricanes fan, and rather ironically, on the weekend the Hurricanes are finally going to end their losing streak to the Seminoles of Florida State, an actual hurricane threatens to derail much of any enjoyment for Florida residents.
I’m not one to let nature disrupt a routine, but I know that there will inevitably be many Floridians affected by this natural disaster. Instead of harping on my ups and downs writing this column, I just wanted to say to all my Floridian friends, neighbors and strangers, stay safe and hopefully you have enough time to evacuate.
To refresh what this column is, these are my confidence plays in a Start/Play/Bench format. “Start” represents your studs and numbers twos that will overachieve. Get them in your lineup, stat! “Play” represents some bench or FLEX plays that should outperform their draft position based on matchup. “Bench” presents your studs that you should temper expectations for or FLEX plays you should swap out with a bench player. And really, it’s based off my rankings. Check them out and use them as a guide!
Cheers to Week 5.
QB Tom Brady, WR Julian Edelman & TE Rob Gronkowski (NE) – Brady’s first game back? Against the Browns? Just because it’s obvious doesn’t mean it isn’t worth mentioning.
QB Phillip Rivers & RB Melvin Gordon (SD) – Gordon is my #1 RB this week and Rivers my #3 QB. Oakland gives up the third most fantasy points to QBs and the sixth most to RBs. I mean, who doesn’t like those kinds of stats?
WR Jarvis Landry (MIA) – Tennessee plays good defense. But so does Seattle, New England and Cincinnati and Landry scored double digits against all of them. As The Commish pointed out last week, Landry is one of the more consistent wide receivers in PPR formats. Easy call.
QB Jameis Winston (TB) – As The Commish pointed out on this week’s podcast, the Panthers offense tends to dominate the Bucs defense. While I agree with that assessment, I also think Winston will have a bounce back game, if anything, just to keep the pace with the Panthers. It’s been seen this season that the Panthers defense isn’t what it used to be.
QB Carson Wentz & TE Zach Ertz (PHI) – Wentz is the real deal, much to my joy. Ertz returns from a displaced rib, and Wentz has made good use of his tight ends this season. Against the Lions who yield the second most fantasy points to tight ends and quarterbacks this season, I think the Eagles offense will have a pretty good game.
WR Michael Crabtree (OAK) – It’s pretty clear QB Derek Carr has confidence in Crabtree, so much so it’s disrupting all the plans Amari Cooper owners had for the latter’s ascension into fantasy stardom. And with news that Chargers star cornerback Jason Verrett is done for the season with a torn ACL, I’m almost willing to bet this move backfires. Almost.
RB Jordan Howard (CHI) – He toted the rock with authority last week against the Lions and he’s the unquestioned starter. If that wasn’t enough to convince you to play him, he goes against a Colts defense that allows the fifth most fantasy points to RBs this season and gave up 71 yards (5.07 yards/carry) to the Jaguars RB T.J. Yeldon.
TE Hunter Henry (SD) – The Chargers play Oakland. Do I need to say anymore? Okay fine. They’ve been better this year, and even held Ravens’ Dennis Pitta to under five fantasy points. Call it a gut call, but I’ll bet on their struggles from last year against an offense that uses their tight ends better than most.
WR Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG) – His stats are trending down. WR Sterling Shepard is really good and OBJ has become an infant in shoulder pads. Pass.
RB Lamar Miller & WR DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) – Insert studs who play the Vikings here.
QB Matthew Stafford (DET) – The Eagles defense is good. Really good. And their defensive coordinator? Only former Lions head coach Jim Schwartz. Revenge is a dish best served cold.
QB Carson Palmer (ARI) – He’s not right. Mechanics, psyche, who knows. I’m not willing to start him until I see 2015 Palmer consistently.
TE Jason Witten (DAL) – The Bengals allow the 11th fewest fantasy points to tight ends this season. I’d rather have WR Cole Beasley this week if I’m starting a Cowboys option who gets the dump-offs.