It’s week 8 all you fantasy nuts out there. The halfway-ish point of the season, and hopefully your pushing onward to ladder half with a competitive team who won’t be denied your “Manifest Destiny” as you continue towards the coasts of playoff glory. Let’s look at week 8 start’ems.
Eli Manning – Manning had 4 missed TDs from last week to just Mario Manningham, so his stat line was a little deceiving last week. This week presents a great match up against terrible Dolphins team rank 21st against the pass and has allowed the 3rd most TDs scored against them with 12 on the season.
Ben Roethlisberger – With the run game showing little signs of life, Big Ben is reemerging as a favorable fantasy QB start. After throwing for 3 TDs against Arizona, he gets the Patriot 32nd ranked pass defense in a home game.
Matt Hasselbeck – Ever since the lose of Kenny Britt, Hasselbeck’s numbers have been down. They aren’t likely to return to his early-season form, but the Colts have been awful and looked like they laid down last week, so he could have a decent day as a result.
Others I like: Matt Schaub – Schaub has maintained good stats despite the absence of Andre Johnson and this week will face a vulnerable Jags D. John Beck – Beck has looked fairly solid in the 2 games that he’s played. He’s got good chemistry with Fred Davis and Jabar Gaffney, and this week he faces 30th ranked pass defense. He is also a threat to run one in for a score which he has done in back to back games.
Ryan Mathews – Mathews continues to get dinged up, and continues to keep playing. This week he gets a rematch against a Chiefs team he totaled 149 yards and 2 TDs against.
Darren Sproles – Sproles has easily been the back to own in New Orleans, and with signs pointing to Mark Ingram being out, Sproles should see a bigger workload and against a terrible Rams defense.
Pierre Thomas – Mark Ingram’s absence will also open things up for Pierre Thomas, especially as a goal line back. The New Orleans offense is firing on all cylinders so there should be plenty to go around for both backs this week.
Others I like: DeMarco Murray – There are some people who are attributing Murray’s success solely to his 91 yard run and an atrocious Rams D, but remember, Murray racked up 161 yards after the 91 yard run. The Eagles are still soft versus the run and this could be another solid week for the rookie. Ryan Torain – Most are still in wait and see mode with Torain after Shanahan’s flip flopping. With Hightower out for the season, Torain should be the guy against the Bills’ 30th ranked run D.
AJ Green – Green has proven to be a special talent this season and will face a Seattle secondary with the likes of Brandon Browner who has been vulnerable to the deep ball.
Steve Smith – There are still leagues out there that are under-projecting Smith from week to week. Make no mistake about it, Smith is an every week starter with Cam Newton at the helm. He faces a Vikings secondary that will be minus Chris Cook and possibly Antoine Winfield.
Brandon Lloyd – Lloyd had 12 targets in his first game with the Rams and just missed out on a few scoring chances. Even if Sam Bradford is out, the Rams appear to be zeroed in on Lloyd. The will again be likely to play from behind and Saints haven’t been the best against the pass.
Others I like: Nate Washington – If it weren’t for the great match up I’d be iffy on Washington even being kept on your team, but the Colts have been proven a fraud on defense and Washington could cash in this week. Antonio Brown – Brown had a career day with 7 receptions for 102 yards last week. Even with Emmanuel Sanders starting, Brown will be the receiver in on passing downs. He should get plenty of looks with the Patriots likely to blanket Mike Wallace this week.
Rob Gronkowski – The Steelers have had difficulties against tight ends and last year Gronk had his coming out party and his best game of the season against Pittsburgh with 72 yards and 3 TDs. This is a good match up for the blocking tight end.
Jason Witten – The Eagles secondary has been solid this season, but versus the tight end the Eagles have had issues. With the Eagles likely to focus on neutralizing Dez Bryant, Witten should be in for a solid outing.
Visanthe Shiancoe – Rookie Christian Ponder looked to his tight end often last week, where he targeted Shiancoe 8 times. As long as his foot injury doesn’t keep him out Shiancoe should be a solid play.
Others I like: Antonio Gates – Gates is generally known as an every week starter, but with a foot injury that has made his a risky play there is some question. Last week he was primarily in red zone packages, and even if that’s the case this week then Gates will be a solid play. Vernon Davis – Joe Haden will likely help to shut down the 49ers wide outs and Davis should be able to capitalize as long as they don’t keep him on the line to help block.
Billy Cundiff – Plain and simple. The Ravens will look to redeem themselves after last week. Cundiff will get his attempts.
Neil Rackers – The Jags D isn’t the best, but if could be enough to slow the Texans down in within Rackers’ distance.
Others I like: Orlindo Mare – With Cam Newton the Panthers have been a solid offense and can move the ball. The Panthers face a depleted Vikings team and Mare have a good chance to follow up last week’s 4 FG performance. John Kasay – See last week’s exploitation of the Colts.
Cincinnati – The Bengals D is one of the higher ranked D’s and with face an inept Seattle offense. Look for them to take advantage.
San Francisco – Cleveland has had their own struggles offensively and the 49ers have been one of the top 5 scoring defenses so far this season. Keep riding them.
Others I like: New Orleans – St. Louis may put up some points in garbage time when the game is out of reach, but New Orleans should have a similar game defensively to last week’s. Houston – Even without Mario Williams the Houston D is staying solid. They get another good match up against rookie Blaine Gabbert.
Thanks for reading. Please leave any comments or questions here or you can follow me on Twitter @dwillPSB.
About the Author
Written by David Willow
My name is David Willow. Your NFL and Fantasy Jedi. I have lived in Dallas, TX most of my life. I have been following both football and basketball since I was a child. I love being able to research and analyze different players and teams. I've been a fantasy sports enthusiast for around 8 years with some titles to back that. I have a Bachelors degree in History with a minor in English. Other hobbies include me being part of an acting workshop for five years, playing guitar, and working out. Hit me up with any comments, questions or opinions.