Fantasy Football Showcase: It Sucks if You Own Steve Slaton and Other News from Around the NFL in Week 9
We will have passed the halfway point of the NFL season this weekend, and with two remaining undefeated teams there have been some surprises along the way.
The keys for any top fantasy football owner at this juncture of the season are:
1.) Monitoring the waiver wire and;
2.) Determining “WDIS” consistently prior to kick-off.
Follow us at @KeeperLeagueGM on Twitter for game day injury WDIS updates on Sunday.
Now…here are Friday’s top Fantasy Football updates.
If you drafted Matt Forte and Steve Slaton, your life sucks
Ryan Moats rewarded savvy waiver wire hawks last week with a monster performance (151 yards, 3 TD’s). Texans Head coach Gary Kubiak has said this week that he will rotate carries against the Colts (who may be without run stopper Bob Sanders), but if playing the hot hand is in the game plan, Slaton owners should fret. However, as we saw earlier with Steelers’ RB Rashard Mendenhall, a little “tough love” motivation can go a long way. Matt Forte owners have be just as disappointed, as their RB1 has the lowest red zone carries to touchdowns in the NFL this season. It will not get much easier this week against the Arizona Cardinals, who, surprisingly, are 8th in the league this season against the rush.
Chiefs fan want to run Larry Johnson out of town; Jamaal Charles to benefit.
Larry Johnson has done something I didn’t think was possible—get run out of town in perhaps the best football city in America. But…he did. Reports out of Kansas City have Chiefs season ticket holders lobbying for the Chiefs to cut their oft-troubled running back. Fans are unwilling to accept that he may join the Chiefs “Ring of Honor” and have begun an online petition. If you have an opinion yourself (or your top fantasy football challenger owns LJ), feel free to vote here.
Anquan Boldin likely out on Sunday (Ankle)
Boldin’s pesky ankle will likely keep him off the field this week against the Bears in Chicago. This will boost Steve Breaston to WR2, and promote Jerheme Urban to the slot, offering a waiver wire opportunity heading into Week 9.
Eagles’ Brian Westbrook should play; likely to split carries with LeSean McCoy
Westbrook has been cleared to play in Sunday’s NFC East showdown against the Cowboys. Westbrook has admitted “fear” related to his concussion in Washington two weeks ago, so look for some possible apprehension on his first few carries. If you own LeSean McCoy look for a reduction in touches this week.
Donald Driver Questionable Against the Bucs in Tampa
Good news, bad news for Driver owners this week. Good news is that his stinger is not serious and he could likely play if this were a play-off game. The Bad News is that it is not a play-off game; they are playing the Bucs, and it would be in the Packers’ best interest to rest him.
Oh…and Aaron Rodgers.
Rodgers has missed practice all week with sprained feet—yes, evidently both feet. He is expected to practice today and start on Sunday. Green Bay expects it’s quarterbacks to start every week. Just another thing Aaron can thank “Mr. Wrangler Jeans” for in his annual X-mas card.
Giants’ Mario Manningham to play; Hakeem Nicks beginning to steal touches
The Giants are in dire need of a win, coming off three straight losses, including a blowout in Philadelphia last weekend. They will get their WR2 back this week, however, he may not be their WR2 for long. While WR1 Steve Smith is more suited to the slot, he will not be displaced by the emergence of rookie receiver Hakeem Nicks, and that leaves Manningham vulnerable to a reduction in playing time beginning this week. If you own him, his trade value (assuming your trade deadline has not passed), may never be higher than it is now.
Lions’ offense should get Matthew Stafford and Megatron back
If Matthew Stafford plays, Calvin Johnson will most certainly play. The Lions will need both of them to stand a shot in the un-friendly confines of Qwest Field in Seattle against the Seahawks.
Falcons’ WR Roddy White is still hobbling; should play
Roddy White’s injured knee has kept him out of practice all week. He is expected to play, but as in the case with Donald Driver, against the Redskins, it may not be worth the risk for the Falcons. Game time decision to watch.
Colts’ Anthony Gonzalez undergoes knee surgery; out indefinitely
This is a major blow to any Fantasy football owner who was banking on Gonzalez for a breakout season. This is terrific news for Austin Collie and Pierre Garcon owners, however, as both will remain in the lineup.
We’ll keep updating as Friday Injury Reports come trickling in…