We’re 11 weeks into the season now and still dealing with bye weeks, but congratulations, this is finally it. The good news for many fantasy teams is you don’t have to worry about a matchup with the Seahawks. The bad news is The Titans aren’t there either. Ok, maybe that isn’t bad news for Miami.
If you watched any part of the rainy game in Chicago this past Sunday night, you know The Texans defense is stacked. They’re extremely well rounded and can stop the pass nearly as well as they stop the run. Unfortunately, that means Cecil Shorts, who has quickly become Jacksonville’s premiere wide receiver, should not be relied on in any leagues. The Jaguars will have to throw the ball plenty, but they’ve been spreading the ball around too much to think that anyone on their already terrible team is worth a fantasy start in Houston.
The 49ers are another team that is well rounded when it comes to defense, which means that if Jay Cutler’s concussion wasn’t enough to steer you away from using Brandon Marshall this week, his matchup certainly should be. Marshall did manage to get over 100 receiving yards against Houston, but in a full game without Cutler throwing the ball his way, don’t expect more than 5-7 fantasy points.
They may not be quite as well rounded, but The Cowboys defense is also coming along this season and after an ugly, yet convincing win in Philadelphia, The Cowboys should be able to take care of business at home against The Browns. This means that both Josh Gordon and Greg Little could have relatively quiet returns to the field after their bye week. Hopefully you already had a better option than Brandon Weeden, but in 2 QB leagues, you should definitely go with your third option this week if you can.
There are certainly easier matchups to be had this week. For instance, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have covered the run relatively well this year, but have trouble guarding the pass, which should leave some holes open for Cam Newton to hook up with Steve Smith for a score this weekend. Both Newton and Smith have been frustrating to own in fantasy leagues this year, but this could truly be their week to shine. Look for both players to have one of their best performances of the year this weekend.
They may have managed to beat the formerly undefeated Falcons, but The Saints defense is still terrible. That’s excellent news for Carson Palmer, Darrius Heyward-Bey and Denarius Moore owners. After watching Baltimore stomp all over Oakland last weekend, the outcome may not be a whole lot better this weekend, but at least The Raiders will have more opportunities when they’re throwing the ball. Moore and Heyward-Bey both scored in Baltimore and are both likely to score again at home on Sunday.
Finally, after a rough outing in Seattle, The Jets will be looking to get back on track in St. Louis. The Rams aren’t great in any area of their defense, but they’re especially porous against the pass and that means Mark Sanchez is worth a start if you need him as well as Jeremy Kerley. The Jets don’t present a lot of phenomenal offensive options, but if you relied heavily on Eli Manning and need a reasonable plug-in, Sanchez is in one of the best matchups he’ll see this year.