The Fantasy Flavor Friday Football Forecast

September 12, 2008 | Thyrl Nelson

Week 1 was a frustrating one for me in Fantasy Football, but there is still a long season to go. Many people, I am sure were frustrated to find out how the ball was being distributed on teams like Oakland, Denver, Tampa and many others with crowded backfields. Additionally, many who took the wait and see approach on guys like Matt Forte and Michael Turner or Felix Jones may be kicking themselves after week 1.
One thing that we have learned is that the Lions are still the Lions and there are very few backs shouldering even 75% of their teams’ workload. In draft leagues, you kind of have what you have, but here are some players who should play either well above or well below their own typical numbers based on this week’s match ups.
As for my team, there were some positives and some negatives last week too. I hit on Michael Turner but am still not a big fan, and I hit on Tony Romo too. Selvin Young, Heath Miller, Joseph Addai and Lawrence Maroney left “Thyrl’s Thugs” wanting a bit though.
There is still time for you to get registered and get your chance at $5000 in cash prizes, and congrats so far to Bluebird Bombers, Team Boozin and angelsonfootballfield, who are currently in 1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively.
For my money, (which is none, it’s free to enter) WNST’s is the best salary cap league because of the roster flexibility options. You can go with a traditional balanced offense, quarterback, 2 running backs, 3 wide receivers and a tight end. Or you can go with a run and shoot offense with a quarterback, no running backs, one tight end and 5 wide receivers. I have been using the power I formation with a quarterback, 4 running backs, no wide receivers and 2 tight ends.
Last week was disappointing for the Thugs. We went with Tony Romo at QB, Michael Turner, Selvin Young, Lawrence Maroney and Joseph Addai and running back, Heath Miller and Alge Crumpler at TE, Adam Vinatieri at kicker, with the San Diego Chargers defense and JT O’Sullivan as my scout player. (Scouting a player is another unique option in WNST’s fantasy game) In short we took some lumps.
This week we gutted our team, keeping only Lawrence Maroney, Heath Miller Adam Vinatieri and the Chargers defense. All of them except for Miller had their salaries decline this week, so there was no particular benefit in keeping them aside from the fact that I like their match ups this week.
My QB this week is Ben Roethlisbeger, but I will be keeping an eye on his injury situation up until game time. He’ll enjoy the match up with Cleveland, and if the Browns can muster some offense of their own it could be a shootout.
Other QBs who should play over their heads’: Aaron Rodgers vs. DET; Kerry Collins vs. CIN; Phillip Rivers vs. DEN, Chad Pennington vs. AZ; Drew Brees vs. WAS, Kurt Warner vs. MIA, Peyton Manning vs. MIN, and Jay Cutler vs. SD.
QBs who will be in for tough match ups: Matt Ryan vs. TB; Jamarcus Russell vs. KC; Derek Anderson vs. PIT; Matt Cassell vs. NYJ; Tony Romo vs. PHI; JT O’Sullivan vs. SEA; Tavaris Jackson vs. IND; Jake Delhomme vs. CHI and Jon Kitna vs. GB.
My Running backs this week: Ryan Grant vs. DET; Larry Johnson vs. OAK; Lawrence Maroney vs. NYJ, and Brandon Jacobs vs. ST.L.
Others who should enjoy their match ups: DeAngelo Williams / Jonathan Stewart vs. CHI; Fred Taylor / Maurice Jones-Drew vs. BUF; Ernest Graham / Warrick Dunn vs. ATL; Edgerin James / Tim Hightower vs. MIA; LeRon Mclain / Ray Rice / Willis McGahee vs. HOU; and Darren McFadden / Justin Fargas vs. KC.
Running backs who’ll have their work cut out for them this week: Jamal Lewis vs. PIT; Joseph Addai vs. MIN; Steve Slaton / Ahman Green vs. BAL; Clinton Portis vs. NO; Brian Westbrook vs. DAL; Felix Jones / Marion Barber vs. PHI; Marshawn Lynch vs. JAX; Thomas Jones vs. NE; Reggie Bush vs. WAS; and Adrian Peterson vs. IND.
I have no wide receivers, but here are some who should be productive: WAS (Santana Moss / Antoine Randle-El) vs. NO; MIA (Ted Ginn / Greg Camarilo / Derek Hagan) vs. AZ; TEN (Justin Gage / Brandon Jones) vs. CIN; PIT (Hines Ward / Santonio Holmes) vs. CLE; HOU (Andre Johnson / Kevin Walter) vs. BAL; IND (Reggie Wayne / Marvin Harrison / Anthony Gonzalez) vs. MIN; NYG (Plaxico Burress / Amani Toomer) vs. ST.L; GB (Greg Jennings / Donald Driver) vs. DET; and CIN (TJ Houshmandzadeh / Chad “Lost His” Johnson) vs. TEN.
Wide receivers with tough match ups: ATL (Michael Jenkins / Roddy White) vs. TB; MIN (Sydney Rice / Bernard Berrian) vs. IND; DET (Calvin Johnson / Roy Williams) vs. GB; NYJ (Laverneus Coles / Jehricho Cotchery) vs. NE; NO (DeVry Henderson / David Patten) vs. WAS; NE (Randy Moss / Wes Welker) vs. NYJ; KC (DeWayne Bowe / Devard Darling) vs. OAK; CAR (Mushin Muhammad / DJ Hackett) vs. CHI; BUF (Lee Evans / Josh Reed) vs. JAX and OAK (Javon Walker / Ronald Curry) vs. KC.
My Tight Ends this week: Heath Miller vs. CLE and Antonio Gates vs. DEN.
Other Tight Ends with good match ups: Todd Heap vs. HOU; Dan Campbell vs. GB; Donald Lee vs. DET; Robert Royal vs. JAX; Chris Coley vs. NO; Tony Scheffler vs. SD; Jon Carlson vs. SF; and Dante Rosario / Jeff King vs. CHI.
Tight ends with tough match ups this week: Anthony Fasano vs. AZ; Owen Daniels vs. BAL; Kellen Winslow vs. PIT, Vernon Davis vs. SEA; Leonard Pope vs. MIA; Dallas Clark vs. MIN, Ben Utecht vs. TEN; Ben Hartsock vs. TB; Jon Madsen / Zach Miller vs. KC; and Jason Witten vs. PHI.
Not sure how much a match up can favor a kicker but here are this week’s best: Kris Brown vs. BAL; Sebastian Janikowski vs. KC; Jeff Reed vs. CLE; Neal Rackers vs. MIA and Stephen Gostkowski vs. NYJ.
Kickers with tough match ups: Ryan Longwell vs. IND; Mike Nugent vs. NE; Matt Prater vs. SD; Jason Elam vs. TB and Phil Dawson vs. PIT.

Defenses I like this week: Giants vs. ST.L; Vikings vs. IND; Redskins vs. NO; Titans vs. CIN, Packers vs. DET; Jets vs. NE; Steelers vs. CLE and Eagles vs. DAL.

My Scout player: Matt Schaub vs. BAL

As always keep and eye on the injury report, take players in the Ravens / Texans game at your own risk (I’m still skeptical that they’ll get it in) and have fun. Remember these match up projections are based on what you’d typically expect from that player and is not a top ten for starts and sits this week. For God’s sake don’t bench AD, LT or any of your other “initials only” players.
Good Luck