Saturday, October 17, 2015

Week 6 Starters & Benchwarmers

Wondering whether or not to start Matt Forte and DeAndre Hopkins, or to bench E.J. Manuel and Brian Hartline? The network bozos specialize in that kind of advice. If you’re looking for help with your real starting lineup conundrums, read on.

Here are my picks to roll, and get rolled, in Week 6 of the 2015 season.

Watch ‘em roll

Sam Bradford, QB, Eagles vs. Giants. Bradford seems to be getting into a rhythm with Philly’s up-tempo offense, passing for 603 yards and 5 TDs over the last two weeks. Next up: The NFL’s most generous secondary.

Arian Foster, RB, Texans at Jaguars. He’s gotten past his groin injury and reclaimed the workhorse role in Houston’s backfield. Meanwhile, Alfred Blue is dealing with a turf toe, and the Jaguars just made Doug Martin look like a fantasy stud for the first time since his rookie season.

Antonio Andrews, RB, Titans vs. Dolphins. Though he’s part of a committee that includes his running quarterback and Bishop Sankey, Andrews has reached the end zone in both of the games he’s played. With Miami’s league-worst run defense coming to town, and Marcus Mariota in need of run support, Andrews has an excellent chance to continue his positive momentum.

Marvin Jones, WR, Bengals at Bills. Buffalo’s offense is basically down to the JV team, so Andy Dalton should be in firm control of this game throughout. Jones hasn’t seen the end zone since Week 3, but he should have plenty of opportunities against the soft spot in the Bills’ defense.

Donte Moncrief, WR, Colts vs. Patriots. All signs point to the return of Andrew Luck, which is bad news for Andre Johnson and great news for the speedy Moncrief. While T.Y. Hilton draws the attention of the Patriots’ secondary, Moncrief should be able to capitalize on the deeper routes where Luck excels.

More thumbs up (excluding the no-brainers): QBs Eli Manning, Carson Palmer, Andy Dalton, Joe Flacco, Blake Bortles, Cam Newton; RBs T.J. Yeldon, Dion Lewis, Lamar Miller, Frank Gore, Chris Ivory, DeMarco Murray, Melvin Gordon, Charcandrick West; WRs Mike Wallace, Jordan Matthews, Alshon Jeffery, James Jones, Kendall Wright, Allen Hurns, Keenan Allen, Allen Robinson.

Roll ‘em back

Andrew Luck, QB, Colts vs. Patriots. It is possible to like a receiver and not his QB in any given matchup. That’s the case this week, as Luck will be forced to drop back often, exposing his ailing shoulder to plenty of big hits behind Indy’s porous line. New England’s secondary has claimed as many interceptions (six) as the touchdowns they’ve surrendered. We haven’t seen the 2014 version of Luck yet, and I don’t expect him to re-appear this week either.

Redskins RBs at Jets. This has turned into a three-pronged backfield with Chris Thompson contributing mostly as a receiver. Alfred Morris hasn’t come close to 100 combined yards in a game since Week 1, and he hasn’t reached the end zone all season. Matt Jones is fighting through a sprained toe. Leave them all alone against the Jets’ stout run defense.

Giovani Bernard, RB, Bengals at Bills. Though Bernard is the preferred option over backfield mate Jeremy Hill these days, both backs should have a rough day against the Bills’ ferocious run defense. Hopefully you have safer options.

Travis Benjamin, WR, Browns vs. Broncos. Benjamin is having a career year, but this should be a weekend to forget. John McCown will be harassed mercilessly by Denver’s pass rush, leaving Benjamin little time to find a seam in their stingy secondary. Avoid all Cleveland players in this contest.

Sammy Watkins, WR, Bills vs. Bengals. The good news is that Watkins (calf) is expected to return this week. The bad news is he’s returning to an offense in disarray. E.J. Manuel will be under center, the Bills’ running game is a shambles and the Bengals are brimming with confidence. Watkins has already complained about a lack of targets, and that’s when he had an accurate quarterback at the controls.

More thumbs down: QBs Matt Stafford, Ryan Tannehill, Teddy Bridgewater, Jay Cutler, Kirk Cousins, Colin Kaepernick, Josh McCown, Mike Vick, Ryan Fitzpatrick; RBs Jeremy Hill, Rashad Jennings, Bishop Sankey, Ameer Abdullah, Ahmad Bradshaw, C.J. Anderson, Knile Davis, Duke Johnson, Isaiah Crowell, Andre Ellington, Jonathan Stewart; WRs Pierre Garcon, Doug Baldwin, Golden Tate, Andre Johnson, Michael Floyd, Marquess Wilson, Percy Harvin, Torrey Smith, Kenny Stills, Martavis Bryant, Jaelen Strong, Nelson Agholor, Markus Wheaton, DeSean Jackson, Rishard Matthews.


Kamar Aiken, WR, Ravens at 49ers. With Steve Smith (back) highly unlikely to return this week, Aiken should again be Joe Flacco’s main target in a matchup with one of the league’s worst pass defenses. Look for at least one deep ball to Aiken reaching pay dirt.

DON’T BE THE BONEHEAD WHO…wastes your money trying to win big bucks on the weekly fantasy sites. By recent accounts, those sites are rigged for the big spenders who enter hundreds, if not thousands, of rosters using algorithms built to game the system. Wanna play friends head-to-head? Go for it. But don’t throw away your money in contests where the odds are stacked in the pros’ favor. And don’t be surprised if some headline-seeking attorney general tries to shut the sites down outright given all the negative headlines.


  1. Stuck with G. Bernard, CJ Anderson(and Hillman) Carlos Hyde, and Charcandrick West. Not good, but who do you pick in this lot?

  2. Full point ppr I need one out of these 4...sorry its a deep league...moncrief, west, crowder, and vereen...thanks

  3. Another full point ppr league...2 out 4...mike wallace, vereen, martavis bryant, and ty...thanks

  4. Based on matchups...would you play...luck, hoyer or always appreciate the help

  5. Half point ppr league...john.brown or Danny woodhead...need the one who has the most upside thank you

  6. Dont be the bonehead who...dropped Antonio Andrews last week for Micheal Floyd. Glad I was able to get him back.