It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Something I’ve always thought about, but never thought would actually happen. It began like any other day, and halfway through it still wasn’t anything special, but then everything changed. The day would go down as one of the most important of my year, and maybe even my life.
I’m talking about getting engaged on Friday, but I’m sure many Doug Martin owners felt the same way on Sunday. And while I will spend the next couple of weeks starting to plan for my wedding, the rest of you need to be planning for the fantasy playoffs. Who am I kidding, I’ll be planning for the fantasy playoffs as well. Priorities people!
At this point in the season, the high-profile pickups are likely all owned, but that doesn’t mean useful players aren’t still out there, especially in dynasty/keeper leagues. Just three short years ago an undrafted rookie came off the Texans’ practice squad and made some noise at the end of the year. Many owners were turned off by his seemingly racist name, or chalked up his production to garbage time, but perceptive owners scooped up Arian Foster with the hopes of him becoming a starter in Houston. All he’s done since then is lead the NFL in rushing and established himself as a no-doubt top 3 pick in fantasy drafts. So you never know.
Here are your pickups for non-standard leagues heading into Week 10:
2 QB Leagues – Joe Webb
Christian Ponder is 49/74 for 372 yards, with 2 TDs and 4 interceptions over the last three games. With Adrian Peterson back to his all-world level, the Vikings only need mediocre play from the QB position to put themselves in the position to win. Webb has never had much success running an offense, other than a miraculous win over Philly in 2010, but he might be a welcome change of pace in Minnesota. The schedule gets rough quickly for the Vikings, but if Webb’s legs give him an added weapon against even the best defenses. If you have a deep bench in a 2QB league, or you own Ponder, Webb is worth a flier in case a QB switch is made.
PPR Leagues – Josh Morgan
In the last two weeks, the top 5 receivers in targets are Brandon Marshall, Steve Smith, Larry Fitzgerald, Reggie Wayne and Morgan. One of these things is not like the other. With Fred Davis out for the year, and Pierre Garcon likely to join him, there is a notable lack of options for fantasy stud RG3 to throw to. Washington’s receivers have had drops at some key moments this year, but Morgan’s 69% catch rate is the best of the healthy receivers. He earned the ire of fans earlier in the year after costing the Skins a win due to an unnecessary penalty, but he also appears to have earned RG3’s trust. He hasn’t had a true breakout performance game yet, but Morgan has double digit PPR-points in each of his last two games and odds are he will find the endzone sometime soon. With Washington’s bye next week, Morgan will be an under-the-radar pickup in PPR leagues for at least one more week.
TD-Only Leagues – Marcel Reese
Reese is likely to be a top pickup in all leagues this week, as both Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson went down with injuries on Sunday. If DMC and Goodson return quickly, Reese has little to no value in standard leagues; but in TD-only leagues, he might be a good source of late-season points. McFadden is by no means durable, and other backups Goodson and Taiwan Jones are not nearly the bruiser that Reese is. Weighing in at 255 pounds, Reese is the ideal goalline back, and he had a surprisingly dominant day catching passes against Tampa, adding another dimension to his game. If you’re in a TD-only league, or a wing-eating contest, Reese would be a nice addition to your squad.
Dynasty/Keeper Leagues – D.J. Williams
Jermichael Finley is currently TE23 for the season, making him droppable in most leagues, and he is actually being outscored by backup Tom Crabtree. It has become clear that Finley is not in the long-term plans in Green Bay, and I would highly doubt Crabtree is the type of TE that Aaron Rodgers wants to Discount Double-Check down to. Enter Williams, the Packers’ 5th round pick in 2011, who is in the position to take over at TE as soon as next year. Williams isn’t the physical freak that Finley is, but he is still immensely talented and will be in an ideal position to contribute. He’s worth picking up in dynasty formats especially if you have Finley or an aging end like Gonzalez, Witten or Gates.
Return Yardage Leagues – T.Y. Hilton
I’m all about guys with letters for names this week. Hilton joins the elite club of athletes/celebrities whose first names are letters, but the second letter is not “J,” along with C.C. Sabathia, C.M. Punk and L.L. Cool J. Hilton is another player who will be a hot pickup in most leagues, but in Return Yardage leagues he’s worth the a top waiver slot, or a nice chunk of FAAB dollars. The Colts have been looking for a complement to Reggie Wayne all season, with Hilton and Donnie Avery alternating weeks of production and drops. Avery went down with a hip injury in the second half on Sunday, paving the way for Hilton to put up a line of 6/102/1, in addition to another dropped TD. The drops will always be an issue, but with his usage in the receiving, rushing and return games, Hilton looks poised for a big second half if he can establish himself as the WR2 in Indianapolis.