Black Friday: Stand In Line
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and got to spend some time with those you love. This should of course include Football! While the games yesterday didn’t exactly stick to the script I wrote, it still resulted in a 2-1 day. That is exactly the winning percentage I have been running at all season, .667%. Between you and I, after beginning the day undefeated I was almost certain there was no way the Niners would come through at the end. On a side note, how bad does Colin Kaepernick look?!? If he were in New York, he would have been benched by now. If he were in Washington, D.C. he may not even be on the roster at this point. I may be exaggerating slightly, but he clearly is not progressing the way most had hoped. If my picks hold true to recent form, there are a guaranteed 3 winners in this group. Let’s hope this is the week I get back into elite form. Best of luck to those of you seeking action… below is a recap of this week in Fantasy.
The very first podcast I hosted was in the pre-season, and it was a debate on the value of the Rookie Wide Receivers in 2014. It was based off the article I wrote, ‘A Bakers Dozen,’ and I was joined by Ryan Berger (@TheFFGhost) and Jeff Beran (@FFJeffB). Both Ryan and Jeff write for DynastyLeagueFootball.com, DLF for short, and are considered to be Dynasty League experts. At the very least they are Dynasty savvy. I kid often with them, as both are two of my better comrades in the industry. This week I was joined by both again to revisit the discussion we had earlier in the year. With so many rookie WRs living up to, and beyond expectations, the topic only seemed right. Hope you enjoy, and Good luck this week, especially those trying to clinch a Playoff berth!
Season Record: 23-12
1.) Tennessee Titans (+7) at Houston Texans, 1:00pm
Arian Foster should be back. This is great news for fantasy owners, and any last gasp hope Texans fans may have at the Playoffs. It also would appear to be bad news for the Titans, who are dead last against the run, and give up an average of 145 yards per game on the ground. However, the Texans are not great against the pass, and this is now the second time rookie Zach Mettenberger gets to see them. Is this putting too much misguided faith in the Mett? We can only know the true answer to that on Sunday afternoon. I am willing to believe his confidence, and growth to this point, will make this a closer game than to be decided by a full touchdown. This also has something to do with the woes Houston has at Quarterback, where journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick has once again become the starter. Yes, this should be an ugly one for sure.
2.) Jacksonville Jaguars (+3) vs New York Giants, 1:00pm
If you didn’t know any better, you would think Odell Beckham, Jr was inducted into the Hall of Fame this past week. His performance so far this season, propelled by some truly amazing catches, has justified his draft position. It has yet to do much for Giants victories though. In fact, the only Win ODB has enjoyed as a pro, was in his debut against Atlanta. New York has now lost 6 straight, and there is nothing to suggest this week will be any different. This is not to imply the Jaguars have been much better, but they are not going to roll over and play dead either. Jacksonville does not provide a great home field advantage, but it is a check in the Jags column. Also, they are a team full of youth and growing each week. This is the exact kind of game that should be within their reach, and the smell of victory should keep their attention until to the final whistle.
3.) Baltimore Ravens (-6) vs San Diego Chargers, 1:00pm
There has been a lot of speculation that something is not right with Philip Rivers. Whether true or not, the team has been able to take advantage of its schedule, and squeak by some lesser opponents. Ryan Mathews has returned to the lineup, and is expected to take some of the load off of the veteran QB. However, this would be a bad matchup for the Chargers even if everything was hitting on all cylinders. The Ravens Defense has looked like its vintage self. They have been even better at home. Through the 5 games they have hosted, they have yet to allow a rushing TD to an opponent, and have only given up 4 TDs from passes. Add to that the early start on a cross country trip, and this one could get out of hand quick. These two teams might be tied in the standings at 7-4, but the action on the field will not give any indication of that.
4.) Oakland Raiders (+6.5) at St. Louis Rams, 1:00pm
The Rams have been playing better of late, but they are still an up and down team. The Raiders have been competitive and showing a lot of fight for a few weeks now, maybe even all season. The talent levels are skewed, but the heart factor favors Oakland. Will that be enough to add to the Raiders win streak? This is very debatable. However, they should be able to keep it within a touchdown, despite the final score. Latavius Murray missing this game will certainly hurt, but the offense really is more dependent on Derek Carr anyway. He has been answering any doubts about being the team’s future at the helm, and I expect the toughness to continue in Week 13. At home, the Rams have given up an average of 286 yards and 2 TDs to opposing QBs per game. As I said, the Raiders offense runs through Carr.
5.) Kansas City Chiefs (+1.5) vs Denver Broncos, 8:30pm #SNF
Denver is reeling, and Kansas City is pissed off. The Chiefs let one get away last week in Oakland, and have fallen a game behind the Broncos as a result. Although the yardage totals haven’t been dominant, the Chiefs have been shutting down ground attacks from entering the end zone. If you think that is good, consider that they are even better defending the pass! A raucous home crowd, a chilly evening, and a tough as nails angry defense; all things Peyton Manning does not have on his wish list. The Broncos have shown some vulnerabilities of late, especially against top notch defenses. Manning may currently be 5-0 against the Chiefs since he joined Denver, but this is the game the Chiefs get their win.