I don’t know about you, but when I think of Thanksgiving, I think of glazed ham. I think of candied yams sometimes with and sometimes without marshmallows. I think about green bean casseroles and cranberry sauce. I don’t care if it’s homemade or if I can slice a piece of that gelatinous goodness off the contents that just slid out of the can, I want me some cranberry sauce. I also think of football and all those memories of trips to see family and friends. I remember sitting with family and laughing my butt off at Leon Lett rumbling, fumbling, stumbling as he chased the ball down to the 1 and let the Dolphins recover the blocked kick. Watch Emmitt Smith and others reminisce on the hilarity yourself. Nowadays – see how I said that like a crusty old guy – we get three games and it is quite beautiful compared to the two I grew up with. Morning, noon and night it’s good family, good friends, good food and – mostly – good football. So I hope your food-induced coma treated you well because it’s time to talk turkey about Turkey Night Football. Oh, I heard your wife. Sounds like you’re off to Black Friday shopping. There are great deals at JC Penney today! Don’t worry, we’ll be here when you get back but for the rest of us, here’s what I saw in yesterday’s games for 2012 fantasy football…
First Serving: Texans vs Lions
Matthew Stafford - Completed 31 out of 60 passing attempts as Detroit went on to lose the game in overtime to the
terrible call stupid rule Texans 34-31. Finished with 441 yards and 2 TDs and 0 turnovers. Needless to say, Stafford is back to his old tricks of late, as he’s been a top 5 QB over the last 4 weeks prior to today and is looking like a sure bet to finish at least in the top 10 at his position for the year. It was a rough start to the year but it’s more important to go out a Lion than to come in one.
Ryan Broyles - Since Titus Young, Sr decided to be the headcase he normally is and was out today, someone had to step up. Needless to say, Ryan did: 126 receiving yards on 6 receptions and a lot of smart football. One of his catches was seeing Stafford scramble out of the pocket and he did the most logical thing: run straight down the sideline past his stunned receiver and caught a long ball. I told you to set your Titus rating to WR2 when he broke out a few weeks back. Mea culpa, I wish I knew someone who added ‘Sr’ to their last name would end up acting like a little kid again. Now I’m telling you to set that Titus rating to Broyles and don’t remove it from the oven until cooked. Hrm, I get my pun but it doesn’t make sense. Pick up Broyles, he’s gonna be good ROS…there, that’s better.
Andre Johnson/Matt Schaub - Both guys stats over the last two weeks have been inflated by a Texans defense that can’t seem to stop anyone. Houston’s normally a run first, second and even third option team but it’s hard to do that when the defense is giving up 30+ a game to the Jags and the Lions each week. Andre has the talent to do what he’s doing – 9 catches for 188 yards – and Schaub is serviceable enough – 315 yards with a TD and an INT – to turn in games like this week on a frequent basis if the team needs it. Either you believe Houston’s defense is toast or you don’t. I don’t. If your trade season is still open, I’d be a seller on both.
Mike Thomas - Had 2 receptions or 17 yards and a touchdown as well as another redzone target that missed. I’m gonna say to ignore the touchdown and look at the actual underlying stats there before you ask if Mike Thomas is a buy.
Justin Forsett - Had 87 yards on 5 rushes, a touchdown and must not have nerve endings in his knees or elbows. It’s the only thing I can do to explain how he had to knees and an elbow hit the ground without him noticing so he could bounce back up for an 81 yard score. Things that Forsett can be thankful for this year: bad nerve endings, Jim Schwartz, and refs who can’t see that he was clearly down. If you’re wondering about a buy, just read the Mike Thomas blurb again and remove 81 yards and a score from Forsett’s line. The question answers itself!
Mikel LeShoure/Joique Bell - I’d be a little leery, LeShoure owners. Yes, he got the bulk of the carry work (12 carries and 2 receptions compared to Bell’s 5 carries) and he didn’t give you a terrible flex day with 59 total yards and a touchdown but he didn’t really touch the ball in the second half. It could’ve been an issue of pass protection as well as Kevin Smith got a bit more involved at the half as well. Whatever the case may be, it might be Joique for whom the Bell tolls more often in the future.
Arian Foster - Went for 105 and 2 TDs. You know, the usual. Then he went home and enjoyed the win with some tofurky. Cuz that’s what 230 pound athletes do on Thanksgiving.
Brandon Pettigrew/Tony Scheffler - I don’t know why they throw to Pettigrew when they really need it. He drops touchdown passes, so why throw to him in the end zone? He drops crucial catches when his team can least afford it so why do they throw to him on 2nd and 3rd and long when you’re trying to get in field goal position? His end line of 8 for 74 yards and a fumble don’t encapsulate how much he hurt his team. Meanwhile, Tony hauled in 5 for 57 yards and should’ve been used more. Considering he has kept his job the whole season doing the same silly things, I don’t see it going the right way but from here on out I’m calling him Brandon Mani-Pettigrew. Go sit at the salon if you need your nails to dry, stop worrying about them on the field.
Second Serving (pants unbuttoned): Redskins vs Cowboys
Robert Griffin, III – We all know he’s good but the scary thing is, he’s been great since his bye week. Despite an interception today, he’s completed an absurd 77 percent of his passes over his last two games with an 8:1 TD to INT ratio. RGIII the running QB has now become RGIII the pocket passer. Fantasy value: still intact. Analysis: holyOMGbonkers this guy is good.
Cole Beasley - He’s so cute! Was there a pre-game event for the local elementary school and one of them snuck into the locker room and put on a jersey and pads? The Cowboys may have found their own Danny Woodhead. You know, a scrappy little slot receiver type player who can nab you 5 or 7 catches for 60 but still isn’t tall enough to go on any of the scary rides at Disneyland? Anyways, I never bought into Ogletree but given the o-line woes in Dallas, someone who’s there for a short 5 yard slant when he’s needed could be of value ROS in a PPR league.
Pierre Garcon - Said he wasn’t playing at 100%. I’d say 93 yards and a touchdown on 5 receptions is 100% in fantasy circles. I still haven’t learned how to add the squirrel tail to the ‘c’ in his last name. I’ll wait one more week to see if he’s not hurt again. I’m only half joking. He’s missed 8 weeks already and says he’s not fully healed. Unless the team starts competing for a playoff spot, I can’t see him playing the rest of the season which is unfortunate. He seems to be the only target RGIII could turn into fantasy gold on a weekly basis.
Tony Romo - A game of circumstances led to a huge fantasy day – 441 passing yards, 3 touchdowns and 2 Romoceptions – which I will describe to you as if it were a flow chart. Does your team have any run game to speak of (Yes/No)? No, advance 200 yards and 1 touchdown. Does your team have an issue with it’s offensive line (Yes/No)? Yes, throw two interceptions. Does your team fall ridiculously behind early (Yes/No)? Yes, advance 250 yards, 2 touchdowns and a 2 point conversion in ‘trying to save the season but really it’s garbage time’ glory. Not unlike Schaub’s 500 yard extravaganza last week, the game will dictate the numbers sometimes more than the players involved.
Felix Jones - Felix the cat was quite agile, landing on his feet despite both knees bothering him. Ended the day with a 14 yards on 6 carries but saved his fantasy owners with 3 receptions for 47 yards and a touchdown. Hard to blame him 100% for how bad Dallas is at running the ball but I will say you can blame him for just not being very good anyway. Felix always leaves me Jonesing for Murray to come back sooner rather than later and I don’t even own either for fantasy purposes anywhere.
Dez Bryant - Dez – not unlike Neo – has finally realized he’s ‘the one’. Or maybe he’s just happy the plea deal on his assault charges with his mom is over. Whatever the case may be, he now has 20 catches for 290 yards to go with 3 touchdowns over the last two weeks and with Miles Austin going down in the 2nd quarter, he might be leaned on even heavier next week if he were to miss some time. Bryant owners: ‘Dez nize…Dez real nize’.
Alfred Morris - So he’s been boring of late. So boring, many people were asking ‘should I sit him for Ronnie Brown‘ and other forms of fantasy panic nonsense. Churned out 113 yards and a touchdown for his faithful. He might be as boring as Pennyworth but in the end, Alfred gets the job done.
Third Serving(close to passed out despite the screaming children and the rousing family discussion about the current President): Patriots vs Jets
Stevan Ridley – Ridley me this, Stevan: 97 yards on 21 carries and a touchdown. Initially thought he was going to end the night with a decent line without a score. Then I remembered that Belichick always
runs up the score wants to make sure his team holds the lead so he was able to sneak in for a late 4th quarter TD. Don’t act like you’re upset, Jets fans. You’ve played Madden NFL on your PS3 and took a timeout with 25 seconds left so you could get in a final score. Deep down, you’re just like him.
Shane Vereen - Got to be a part of history/infamy as he was the first of 3 consecutive touchdowns the Pats scored in under a minute in the 2nd quarter as he caught a touchdown pass on a wheel route for 83 yards. Seriously, this game was 0-0 after the 1st quarter? Neverthewho, Vereen ended the night with over 130 yards total and a touchdown. Next week he’ll be a DNP and Woodhead will score 3 TDs. Because that’s how the Pats roll.
Julian Edelman - Another week, another two touchdowns…ok, in fantasy he only scored 1 but he did run in the fumble return on special teams. Finished the night with about 65 total yards, said score, a fumble and a KO as he was helped off the field in the 3rd quarter. See, Belichick, this is what happens when you leave your starters out there during junk time. Before you ask, I’m still not buying. Just too hard to trust week in and week out.
Wes Welker - Typical Welker night as he goes for 71 yards on 7 receptions and then atypically topped it off by scoring a touchdown. Also did his ‘I’m thankful for’ skit with NBC dressed like he was a trucker and referenced his family and wife and said he missed ‘y’all’. Wes, your Okie roots are showing.
Shonn Greene - The fumble…ok, it wasn’t the funniest fumble on the night. The award for that one goes to Sanchez, of course. Was he trying to redefine the dirty Sanchez there? I know it’s an embarrassing game but you’re not a gerbil and Moore is not Richard Gere. Stay outta there! But back to Greene. I swear he threw it. How else does a fumble go flying 5 yards over the O-line? Anyways, his stat line for the night – 80 total yards on 15 touches – is respectable but Bilal Powell did the heavy lifting most of the game and was awarded the touchdown, finishing his night 53 total yards. Powell is 3% owned in yahoo leagues and under 2% over at ESPN. No, he’s not sexy but just for fun, Mikel LeShoure has 141 yards and two touchdowns over the last two weeks. Powell has 113 and 3. Just think of that as food for thought. No, not real food, I know you can eat one more bite.
Dustin Keller - Garbage time touchdowns still count in fantasy. Finished the night with 64 yards on 5 receptions and said score. Sure, it wasn’t a killer night but a Keller night will do given how well the Jets played.
Jeremy Kerley - I swear, I watched the whole game and I don’t remember any of the 7 receptions nor the 86 yards. Sad days when you lead your team in receiving categories and all you’re remembered for is how you couldn’t keep your helmet on. He was like Tara Reid on the red carpet, minus the nipples and the nose candy.
Tom Brady - Do I really have to say anything? Brady was Brady, going for 323 passing yards and 3 total touchdowns with one of them being a rush. He also dressed like Ellen DeGeneres for his ‘I’m thankful for’ bit that NBC does. Seriously, google it. Then send it to me because I couldn’t find it and it was hilarious. Almost as hilarious as his image montage when NBC was talking up his accolades later. What QB does devil horns for a primetime game photo shoot? Ronnie James Dio you are not, Tom.