Week 6: Player Downgrades
Some downgrades are for the here and now, some are for the long haul some are just about value going forward. Adjust your planning accordingly...
This one goes out to all those owners who still have Mark Sanchez rostered (Whether that's because you're a Jets rooter who still believes or someone who simply doesn't pay attention to their backup until needed). Depending on where you stand, either snap out of it or wake up because this gig eventually becomes Tim Tebow's. When that happens, he's not letting go. Technically the next three matchups (Colts, Patriots, Dolphins) would provide a reasonable passing attack opportunity for legitimate production, but nobody is putting the wide receiver deficient Jets in that category. Beat the Xmas rush and bail on Sanchez already, either for Tebow (who has top 15 potential when he starts) or seemingly any other passer --even a healthy Matt Cassel, at least he has Dwayne Bowe.
Let's go out on a limb and say we just witnessed Ahmad Bradshaw's best fantasy game of the season with 200 rushing yards, 20+ more through the air and a score. Let's also not forget that just five minutes ago (OK, maybe three weeks back) many in the fantasy and NFL community suggested the Giants backfield had a RBBC by committee look. Andre Brown's rise had something to do with that as did Bradshaw's lack of burst. Kudos to the veteran for a monster game and as I've said repeatedly on the FFToolbox podcast, I'm not buying a Bradshaw-Brown split, even at 60-40. David Wilson on the other hand, that's another story as the Giants would love to get their explosive rookie on the field. Besides, the Giants are thinking big picture. That means get the kid going before the postseason and preserve your older starter as best you can before getting there. Bottom line, you continue starting Bradshaw per usual and most weeks expect solid RB2 numbers. Just don't expect his trade value to be higher than right now after his monster Week 6.Injury Status: Out - Foot
The reality is this downgrade is a longtime coming, but one look at the Jets snap count totals the past two weeks makes it official. According to the New York Daily News Jets beat writer Manish Mehta, Bilal Powell has been on the field more than Shonn Greene in two straight games. Beyond the snaps, Greene's carries have also dropped; after toting the ball 19 times in Week 3, he has 19 carries the last two games combined for 60 yards. Then factor a certain backup QB with a penchant for running might be entering the starting lineup any day and, well, Greene's value could dip futher. If you're in a bye week pinch he makes for a borderline reasonable flex option in Week 6 against the Colts, but the risk likely outweighs the reward.
We are big fans of Fred Jackson the player, let's make that clear. The situation up in Buffalo, less so. First off, you have the C.J. Spiller dynamic. For everything Jackson can do, he can't match Spiller's explosiveness and the Bills offense needs playmakers on the field as much as possible considering the lack of wide receiver options besides Steve Johnson. Then you have the Bills defense, one that was historically bad last week and simply horrific over the last two. The more the other team has the ball, the less time the Bills offense can go to work - and when Buffalo is losing by gobs of points it turns into a Ryan Fitzpatrick passing show. Factor in two of the next three games the Bills face current top 15 run defenses (Arizona, Houston) and Jackson is no more than a flex option. Sad, but true.Injury Status: Injured Reserve
All this season seemingly everyone in the fantasy world has been waiting for the Shanahanigans to begin in the Redskins backfield; waiting for a new starting running back to emerge without notice and with seemingly no rhyme or reason. What folks perhaps haven't noticed is that is exactly what's been happening with the Redskins wide receivers. Leonard Hankerson has been one of the primary yo-yos when it comes to uncertain playing time; after hauling in seven passes against Tampa Bay in Week 4, the second-year player received only nine snaps last week (stat courtesy of our friends at ProFootballFocus). No doubt the 6-foot-2 receiver has a dynamic skill set and down the line he could emerge as the number two threat behind Pierre Garcon, but good luck trusting him on a weekly basis for now. Shanahanigans indeed.