I’m going to make this one short and sweet. There are injuries that will likely keep out Andre Johnson, Hakeem Nicks, Darren McFadden, Ryan Mathews, and Ahmad Bradshaw this week. Making their back ups worth considerations. Let’s look at some week 9 Start’ems.
Eli Manning – Manning has been able to reestablish comfort with his receivers with Victor Cruz’s emergence. He gets the 32nd ranked Patriots defense. Even if Hakeem Nicks doesn’t play, Mannning is a solid start this week.
Phillip Rivers – He has just been awful for fantasy owners this season, and some are convinced he is fighting through an injury. The Packers have the 10th ranked run defense and with Ryan Mathews likely to be sidelined, the Chargers will have a slower Mike Tolbert in, which should lead to more passing against a Packers secondary that is giving up yards and points. It’s a last ditch effort for Rivers owners. Most importantly, Rivers is getting Antonio Gates back consistently, which will be a major boon to his passing stats.
Matt Cassel – After a dismal start to the year the Chiefs are all of a sudden playing with momentum. With Jonathan Baldwin emerging as a viable downfield threat, the Chiefs look like their passing game is back. Cassel gets a weak secondary in Miami this week, making him a good BYE week filler.
Others I like: Matt Ryan – The Falcons may be returning to a more balanced run/pass attack, but the Falcons get the league punching bag in the Colts and could be in for a big day with Julio Jones’ return.
Michael Bush – With Darren McFadden likely to be declared out for Sunday’s game, Bush will get the majority of the touches and proved before that he can carry the load. The Broncos are in shambles right now and the Raiders will continue to feature the run as they ease Carson Palmer into the starting line up.
Michael Turner – The Falcons will be looking to reassert themselves this week against a helpless Colts team, and with fresh legs coming off of the BYE week Turner looks to be in for a good day against the Colts who have given up 10 TDs on the ground and rank 31st versus the run.
Jackie Battle – It didn’t seem like it but Battle had 19 carries on Monday night’s game. He showed power to move the pile break tackles again last week and also showed decent burst on an 18 yard run that put the Chiefs on the goal line. The Chiefs should be convinced to use Battle on the goal line after his one yard plunge.
Others I like: Beanie Wells – Knee injury or not, wells ran for 83 yards and a TD against the Ravens. This week he gets the Rams. LeGarrette Blount – Blount will make his return against a vulnerable Saints run defense. Look for the Bucs to make his presence felt.
Victor Cruz – The improved play of Cruz has helped Eli Manning fill the void left by Steve Smith. Cruz and Manning have a plus match up against the Patriots this week.
Brandon Lloyd – Even if Sam Bradford is out, the Rams have been targeting Lloyd often. He had 11 targets and this week he will face off with a withering Arizona secondary. He could get owners double digit points this week.
Julio Jones – After missing week 7 and getting the week 8 BYE to heal up Jones should be back and will get a great match up against the Colts. He will get his share of looks even if the Falcons go to the ground a little more in this game.
Others I like: Mario Manningham – Another Giants wide out who will benefit from the lousy secondary in New England, but also from the probable absence of Hakeem Nicks. Dwayne Bowe – Bowe has proven critics wrong this year with solid play despite the schedule. He will benefit from a weak secondary in Miami along with a resurgence in the Chiefs’ offense.
Fred Davis – He is the number1 receiving option in Washington, and the 49ers will shut down the dismal run game for the Redskins. They will look to Davis often in this one.
Antonio Gates – He is playing hurt, but his return has made a big impact on the Chargers and it’s clear that Rivers is looking to him every chance he gets.
Brent Celek – The Bears like to take away the deep pass, and last week the Eagles showed no hesitation to dump the ball off to their underused tight end. Could be in for a good follow up to last week.
Others I like: Owen Daniels – He will remain Schaub’s favorite target for another week while Andre Johnson is out an gets a solid match up against the Browns. Jake Ballard – Ballard could get a bump in catches this week with Nicks out, and against Patriots D ranked 27th versus tight ends.
Dan Bailey – Terrible outing by the Cowboys offense last week, Bailey should be in line for a fair share of attempts this week when Dallas hosts Seattle. The Seahawks have been sneak tough this season on defense, but the Cowboys should be able to move the ball as Bailey remains one of fantasy’s top kickers.
Matt Bryant – The Colts have allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to kickers and their defense should leave room for the ground for a reestablished running game from the Falcons. Love the match up.
Others I like: David Akers – Akers should be in line for a good day. The 49ers can move the ball well on the ground, but are still having questions through the air. They have a 48% conversion rate in the red zone which should translate into ample opportunities for Akers. Neil Rackers – Houston will be able to move the ball with Arian Foster and should give Rackers plenty of attemps.
San Francisco – Buffalo has had one of the softer secondaries in the league and Washington couldn’t move the ball. It’s a good bet to go with the 49ers shutting down the Redskins in a similar way.
Kansas City – With the Chiefs offense starting to come together the defense has been following suit. This week they get match up against a struggling Miami team.
Others I like: Oakland – The decent of Tim Tebow has been quick and merciless, and the opposing defenses will be gunning for the seemingly over-matched QB. Teams will look to expose his weakness every week he starts and this week on the carousel it’s Oakland. Dallas – The Cowboys got embarrassed defensively last week. This week they get a Seattle team that showed signs of life last week, but Tarvaris Jackson is battling a pectoral injury that could limit his zip on the ball and makes a strong case for Dallas to recover defensively.
Thanks for reading. Please leave any comments or question 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.