Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, JAC – Most of us doubted whether MJD could stay healthy this entire season and he has shown no signs of old age or wear and tear over the first half the year. The Colts are an abysmal rush defense and are currently allowing over 21 points per game to opposing RB’s. MJD is the feature back and workhorse for the entire Jags offense. He is normally a must-start but I am looking for a huge game from him this week.
Jeremy Maclin, WR, PHI – DeSean Jackson may be a disappointment for fantasy owners this year due in large part to opponents scheming to keep his explosive plays from taking over games. Maclin is now the top fantasy-receiver on the Eagles offense but this will not signal a shift in who defensive coordinators scheme to stop. Maclin should have a GREAT game this week and DJax should draw the attention of Patrick Peterson the vast majority of the time as well as safety help to stop the deep ball from going to Jackson’s side of the field.
Tim Tebow, QB, DEN – Tebow finally played well last week in a win that likely secured his job as the starter for the rest of the season. Funny thing is, he has produced fantasy points no matter how bad he has played. With a match-up against the hapless Chiefs I see no reason why he can’t pass the twenty point mark again this week. I don’t expect another 100 yards rushing but the Chiefs secondary is vulnerable since they lost Pro Bowler Eric Berry.
Steve Johnson, WR, BUF – I sure hope this isn’t wishful thinking on my part as a Bills fan but I think that Stevie matches up very well against the Cowboys secondary. They don’t have an elite cover corner to take him out of the game (and even Revis allowed him to gain 80+ yards in a game where the Bills couldn’t get much done at all on offense). Dallas’ run defense has even been slipping as of late and I think Buffalo’s attack is too well balance for the Cowboys to keep them in check. If Romo tosses a few INT’s it could get out of hand for Dallas, if he doesn’t throw ANY then they have a serious opportunity to win this game though. Either way, you have to put Johnson in your lineup.
DeMarco Murray, RB, DAL – You might be worried because Felix Jones is possibly returning for this game against a soft buffalo rush defense that just had to put Pro Bowl Nose Tackle Kyle Williams on IR. This is a serious blow for the Bills and really impacts their chances at making the playoffs. Jones has been very inconsistent during his time in Dallas and I think that Murray will continue to be the feature back with Jones handling 3rd down work and serving as a change of pace. You shouldn’t need any convincing to start Murray if you have seen him play in the past 3 weeks.
Laurent Robinson, WR, DAL – The Bills secondary might turn the ball over a LOT, but they also allow a lot of yardage to be gained and INT’s don’t negatively impact a receiver’s fantasy point totals. With this match up being very decent and Robinson having an undeniable chemistry with Romo, you are able to grab Robinson off of waivers and immediately throw him into your flex spot.
Chris Johnson, RB, TEN – While it was encouraging to see CJ over 100 all-purpose yards again last week, that is not why he is on this list. He has an unbelievably soft match-up against the Panthers, who have been decimated by injuries on defense. Jon Beason was the glue that held that linebacking corp together and since he went to IR, opponents have been been running all over Carolina. I just don’t think 8 Panthers defenders in the box is enough to slow Johnson in this game.
Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, NYG – I don’t care how much practice he gets in this week, if any. I also don’t care if Jacobs gets the start this week either, whoever the Giants play at RB is going to have a horrible fantasy performance against the 49ers, unless they do it in the receiving game. San Fran has only allowed 411 yards rushing and ZERO rushing TD’s this season. To put that in perspective, there are five teams that have allowed over 1000 yards rushing already. Jacobs is not start-able this week and if Bradshaw plays, he is just a flex play.
Sidney Rice, WR, SEA – The Ravens defense has been lights out and especially against the pass. I don’t know if anyone has told you this before, but Tavaris Jackson is not that good. I would be floored if he was able to put up 200 yards in this game and that doesn’t bode well for his receivers.
Ryan Mathews, RB, SD – Oakland has a relatively stout rush defense and with Mathews coming off the injury, I expect him to be eased back in. The goal line work is definite Tolbert’s and with limited carries, I don’t think Mathews is a must-start.
Julio Jones, WR, ATL – I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see 100 yards and a score from Jones. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see 2 catches for 15 yards either. This guy is feast or famine and you shouldn’t over react to one game. If you have a really good group of receivers, then you should feel free to leave the inconsistent guy on your bench of trade him before the deadline.
Chris Ogbonnaya, RB, CLE – He just looked awful last week and while he has a nice match-up, there aren’t any teams on a bye this week and you probably have a better option unless you’ve been bitten by the injury bug.