So I finally got to watching Flight last night, and I love the way it made me think of fantasy. Mostly because most of my teams make me want to go on one of those Denzel benders. But seriously, I loved the tie in of flight or flight. The majority of owners with bad teams flight it away and don’t check their teams, however some of us fight it out, invert the plane and try to save our dignity. As much as I tried to skirt past with the lies and manipulation (“my team sucks because everyone got hurt!”), I finally fessed up, got a lot of courage and purported “I drafted bad, I managed bad week one, I managed bad week two, I’m managing bad now!” And with a little bit of good fortune and waiver wire moves, I turned a 14-teamer where I drafted in order (and this is no joke) Ray Rice, Steven Jackson, Randall Cobb, Marques Colston, Ryan Mathews, Daryl Richardson, T.Y. Hilton (that one worked!), Kenbrell Thompkins and Michael Vick into an actual playoff contending team. None of those guys I was particularly high on – just how the draft played out – and through a series of moves and pickups I’m 4-6 and a game out of the playoffs. Fight! This is a pivotal week for me and I’m sure a lot of teams in Razzball Nation as we start getting into the playoff push crunch time.
Looking back to last week’s picks, mannnn, I keep thinking Kris Durham is about to break out and he gets an early touchdown, then fails to get a second target. I’m still calling that one a wash. Then a rough set of picks past rife with injuries with Terrelle Pryor more-or-less lying about how he was feeling and ailing with the knee, Mike James breaking his and ankle, then Mike Brown disappointing and Andre Ellington I’ll call a wash with over 10 in PPR. For my sonofabenches, Matt Ryan and Roddy White were both terrible, Anquan Boldin couldn’t get any nice looks, but Maurice Jones-Drew and Giovani Bernard did well. Not very good, but not the worst. Here’s who I like in week 11 and their % started in ESPN and Yahoo, respectively (NOTE – these are not always recommendations for 1-for-1 swaps, just guys I like who are understarted and guys I hate overstarted):
Nick Foles (47.6%, 65%) Yahoo has keyed in on the Foles-train, but I would hope both those start %s would be in the 90s. Treat Foles like a boy band! I’m still not exactly a total Foles-believer, however he’s hot, the Redskins defense is terrible, and I’m buying he should be virtually a must-start, unless you grabbed him to back up one of the few studs.
Andre Ellington (35.7%, 51%) The first of some back-to-back picks! The nostalgia is like watching Watchmen. Wait, is that still grammatically correct? Speaking of correctness, Bruce Arians is trying to save face for his buddy Rashard Mendenhall. Arians is pulling his Lumbergh, with motivations lately of “Ummm, hi Rashard… I’m gonna, uhhhh, need to give you less carries… See the film on this play? See how you should’ve gone a little to the left, yeah that’s great…” Ellington might not get the heaviest of workloads, but against that terrible Jags D, Ellington gets my official week 11 O-face.
Kris Durham (0.2%, 2%) The breakout is coming. I just know it is. Maybe because I work in Durham, NC… I dunno, but he looks great out there, he and Matthew Stafford have rapport (caught 100% of his targets last week!), and there’s no way Ike Taylor and the Steelers passing D let Calvin Johnson just waltz around in single coverage like the Bears did. Durham has actually been consistently decent in 6 straight. Durham is coming!
Bernard Pierce (9.0%, 5%) The changing of the guard is coming, and it may very well be this week. The Bears have been terrible against the run giving up the 7th-most fantasy points to opposing RBs, and if Ray Rice is struggling again early, it’s time for Saint Bernard. Harbaugh has said he’s going with the hot hand, and Rice’s hands have been colder than a Himalayan avalanche. Pierce is a bit of a risk, but on injury ravaged fantasy squads or teams drafted as bad as I told you about in the open, he’s worth the upside.
Marquise Goodwin (0.0%, 1%) If you haven’t heard yet, both Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods have been ruled out, giving lil’ Goody a lotty roomy for a big game. Targets should be coming and he could turn any short slant into something. In deep leagues, worth a look and a good DraftKings pick to fill out your roster if you’re still looking to pick up a team this week!
SON OF A BENCH
Colin Kaepernick (58.4%, 46%) Yahoo has closed in on it, but there’s no was Kappy should be in the same planet as Foles this week. Popular belief is going at NO will lead to a shootout, but Vernon Davis is banged up and the Saints actually give up the third-least fantasy points to opposing QBs. We all saw on primetime what they did to Tony Romo. Go Foles or some deeper options.
C.J. Spiller (77.2%, 51%) There’s just not a chance I’d roll with Spiller this week, as he’s just not his healthy self even though he’s not on the injury report. He’s coming off brutal games in three of the past four and the Jets give up the second-least fantasy points to RBs. Pass pass pass (and no puffing).
Danny Amendola (55.4%, 51%) The only other week he was started enough that I had him a bencher, he went nuts. Ain’t no one going nuts against my Panthers! We’ve been so solid up front that it’s been tough for QBs to get anything going and we’ve been pretty brutal to opposing teams injury-wise. Not a good combo for an Amendola start.
Mike Wallace (61.2%, 55%) I know on paper it looks like a good matchup, but you know what else is on paper? Stat sheets! He’s been awful, the Fins line is depleted which everyone knows ad nauseum, and I just don’t see a nice game with Ryan Tannehill running for his life like it’s The Walking Dead.
If you have any last second decisions, shoot some comments below or tweet me @jbgilpin – and remember I’m going to be a little slower getting to them but I’ll get to everything well before kickoff! Good luck in week 11!