Week 10: Fantasy Football Studs and Duds



You know what keeps me coming back to fantasy football again and again? It’s those weeks when your picks and decisions pan out. It’s not unlike the game of golf. Any golfers out there will know exactly what I’m talking about: you can hit bad shot after bad shot, but all it takes is one beautiful drive, or a perfect chip shot to get you right back in it. And it’s those few moments of near perfection that keep you coming back again and again. I’ve had a couple of weeks of bad picks in these columns, but I’d like to think I turned it around last week, and it’s the same with my fantasy teams. No matter how bad things get, seeing your players go off (thanks Doug Martin!) one week makes up for all the bad. Hopefully some of these players made your week, because they all scored 15 points or more last week: Joique Bell, Golden Tate, T.Y. Hilton, Kevin Ogletree and Marcel Reece. Don’t get too discouraged by these players, who all scored 4 points or less: Tony Gonzalez, Fred Jackson, Eli Manning, Stevie Johnson, Jeremy Maclin, Dez Bryant and Percy Harvin. Not sure if I've lost a bunch of readers over the past couple of weeks, but I'll keep writing these and posting, if for nothing else than because it's a fun exercise for me.

As I have mentioned before, these articles consider the ESPN and Yahoo standard scoring projections for players at each offensive position (QB, RB, WR and TE). I’m going to choose 2 players at every position to highlight: one as a "stud" and one as a "dud". A Stud is one who I think will significantly beat their projected total, and a Dud is one who I think will fall short of their projected total. It’s also worth mentioning that generally speaking, I’ll try to avoid players with injuries as it’s too easy to pick them as Duds if they’re unlikely to play. You will also see a list of other players I considered picking as my "notables". I will keep a running tally at the end of the post each week to keep track of the accuracy of my predictions. If I can do better than 50% by season’s end, I’ll call it a success. So read on … to see who my picks are for Week 10.

QB Stud: Ryan Tannehill vs IND

This is something of a speculative pick, but last week Tannehill scored 15.5 fantasy points against a poor Colts pass defense. He’s finally healthy again, and the Dolphins are playing pretty well as a team, despite their 4-4 record. This week he gets Tennessee and their 30th ranked defense against QBs. Tannehill has averaged 12.2 points per game in the 8 games he’s finished, which is just average. But, the Titans allow an average of 20 points per game to QBs, so I expect a decent game from the Dolphins signal caller.

ESPN Projection: 18.6
Yahoo Projection: 13.36
CCNorsemen: Beats Yahoo projection by at least 4.

Other too low notables: Blaine Gabbert, Joe Flacco

QB Dud: Cam Newton vs DEN

Well, wasn’t that a nice bounce back game for Cam Netwon. Before we go wild proclaiming that Cam has suddenly returned to form, let’s remind ourselves that it was against the Redskins and their 30th ranked pass defense. Denver is a whole other story. They are ranked 13th and allow an average of 15.4 point per game. Newton has basically been following the matchups this year, playing well against the bad defenses, and struggling against the good ones. I can understand the "shoot out vs Manning" argument, but as a betting man, my money is on the matchup.

ESPN Projection: 20
Yahoo Projection: 22.37
CCNorsemen: Falls short by of Yahoo projection by 4 points or more.

Other too high notables: Michael Vick

RB Stud: Mikel Leshoure vs MIN

I hate picking against the Vikings, but with DT Letroy Guion dealing with turf toe, and Chris Cook on IR, our run defense is vulnerable. We’ve allowed a 100-yard rusher for the past 4 weeks straight. Leshoure just score 3 TDs last week against Jacksonville, and while he has only topped 100 yards once this season, he is still averaging 15 carries and 3 receptions per game, so the opportunity is there for decent production. And after last week’s outburst, it raises his fantasy production to over 11 points per game. The Vikings technically have the 17th best fantasy defense against RBs on the year, allowing an average of 17 points per game, but the past 4 weeks they’ve allowed an average of 27.5.

ESPN Projection: 15.3
Yahoo Projection: 8.92
CCNorsemen: Beats Yahoo by at least 4 points.

RB Dud: Matt Forte vs HOU

So, what do you know…Matt Forte has found the endzone the past 2 weeks. While Michael Bush hasn’t found the endzone since week 3 (and may have lost his goal-line role), they’re facing an excellent Houston defense that still hasn’t allowed a rushing TD this season. The fact is, Forte hasn’t faced a decent run defense all year, with the exception of maybe Dallas, and he only scored 4.9 points that week. This will be a big test for the Bears offense, and while I think Forte has a good shot to break 100 yards from scrimmage, I think he will fail to find the endzone.

ESPN Projection: 20.9
Yahoo Projection: 14.71
CCNorsemen: Falls short of ESPN by 4 points or more.

Other too high notables: Jamaal Charles, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Pierre Thomas

WR Stud: Nate Washington vs MIA

You know who has a great run defense? Miami. You know who has a bad pass defense? Miami. You know who gets Jake Locker back? Nate Washington. You know who has scored 2 TDs in the past 3 weeks? Nate Washington. You know who’s still not 100% from a knee injury? Kenny Britt. You know who was Locker’s favorite target at the beginning of the year? Nate Washington. Everyone is excited about Locker returning, and most are predicting Britt to benefit the most, but I’m not so sure it won’t be Washington.

ESPN Projection: 4.8
Yahoo Projection: 4.47
CCNorsemen: Beats Yahoo by at least 4 points.

Other too low notables: Justin Blackmon, Danario Alexander

WR Dud: Jeremy Kerley vs SEA

Seattle sports the 4th best fantsy defense against WR, allowing an average of only 18 fantasy points to all opposing WR per game. With Stephen Hill getting healthy, and Dustin Keller having re-emerged, Kerley isn’t the only game in town anymore. I think there is still a chance for some flex-worthy production, but let’s not go overboard, Kerley is only averaging 8 fantasy points per game.

ESPN Projection: 11.4
Yahoo Projection: 5.24
CCNorsemen: Falls short of ESPN by 4 points or more.

Other too high notables: Steve Smith, DeSean Jackson and Dwayne Bowe

TE Stud: Martellus Bennett vs CIN

Bennett hasn’t found the endzone in awhile, and in fact, has only topped 4 fantasy points once since week 3. But, he’s also had some tough matchups and a slumping QB. I think both things turn around this week against Cincinatti and their 30th ranked defense against the TE. Add in the fact that Nick’s knee is acting up again, and I think a few more targets could find their way into Bennett’s hands.

ESPN Projection: 2.7
Yahoo Projection: 4.34
CCNorsemen: Beats ESPN Projection by at least 4 points.

Other too low notables: Owen Daniels, Aaron Hernandez

TE Dud: Dwayne Allen vs JAC

This was an impossible choice, as I didn’t feel there were really any TE’s that were projected too high. But of them all, Allen is maybe the best choice. I think too much is being made out of the fact that Coby Fleener is injured. It’s true that Allen did perform decently last week with Fleener out, but that was against Miami and their poor pass defense. In fact, he put up exactly the same number of fantasy points that Miami allows to TEs. If that’s how things are going to go, then I don’t like him this week against Jacksonville, who allows an average of only 4.7.

ESPN Projection: 4.3
Yahoo Projection: 7.13
CCNorsemen: Falls short of Yahoo by 3 points or more.

Other too high notables: None

Last Week

Correct Calls
QB Stud: Tony Romo (ESPN Projection: 11.3, My Call: 15.3+, Actual: 16.8)
RB Dud: Darren McFadden (ESPN Projection: 16.2, My Call: 13.2 or less, Actual: 1.7)
WR Stud: DeSean Jackson (Yahoo Projection: 7.98, My Call: 10.98, Actual: 16)
WR Dud: Earl Bennett (ESPN Projection: 12.5, My Call: 7.5 or less, Actual: 2.2)
TE Dud: Brandon Pettigrew (ESPN Projection: 11.6, My Call: 7.6 or less, Actual: 1.1)

Incorrect Calls
QB Dud: Josh Freeman (ESPN Projection: 18.6, My Call: 15.6 or less, Actual: 18.1)
RB Stud: Willis McGahee (Yahoo Projection: 11.1, My Call: 15.11+, Actual: 7)
TE Stud: Jason Witten (ESPN Projection: 7.6, My Call: 10.6+, Actual: 5.1)

Overall Record: 35-37, 49% Accurate

Daily Norsemen Fantasy Teams
Team CCNorsemen: 6-3 (1st place out of 10)
Death Star Vikings: 6-3 (2nd place out of 12)
Blair Walsh Project: 3-6 (7th place out of 8)

This FanPost was created by a registered user of The Daily Norseman, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of the site. However, since this is a community, that view is no less important.

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