2013 Fantasy Football October 10 Daily Fix: Week 6 D/ST Recommendations
Today’s fantasy football daily fix delivers news and notes about Julio Jones, Matt Schaub, and Calvin Johnson, as well as DraftKings daily fantasy D/ST recommendations for the Kansas City Chiefs, Chicago Bears, and Detroit Lions.
News & Notes
Julio Jones Out for the Season
Julio Jones was having a fantastic season, not only leading the league in receptions, but also ranking sixth among all WRs in fantasy points. The Atlanta Falcons will have the bye week to regroup, but this clearly isn’t good news for the future fantasy prospects of Jones’ offensive teammates.
It obviously hurts Matt Ryan, who loses both his best overall receiver and the deep threat that opens up the soft underbelly of opposing defenses. It’s nearly a death blow for the already banged up Roddy White; drawing constant double coverage tends not to speed the healing process.
Harry Douglas will benefit from a few more looks from Ryan, but he’s at his best out of the slot. He can’t replace Jones on the outside, and Jones’ absence will make it a bit more difficult for Douglas to free himself underneath. Steven Jackson (and prior to his return, the Jason Snelling/Jacquizz Rodgers platoon) will likely get more work, but he’ll also see significantly more eight-man fronts. I don’t expect it’ll be easy for Jackson to run wild while he’s fighting back flashbacks of his last few years in St. Louis.
The guy I most want to keep an eye on here is Tony Gonzalez. There’s opportunity for him in this crisis, but I can’t confidently say whether he’ll be able to take advantage. The Falcons could compensate for the loss of Jones by utilizing Gonzalez more as a field-stretcher up the seam, in almost a Gronk/Hernandez sort of role. I’m just not sure that Gonzalez is capable of that at this point in his career. He’s a hold for now, but I’ll be paying very close attention to his Week 7 results; I’ll strongly consider a buy if things go well.
The Autumn of Matt Schaub’s Discontent Continues
Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak has confirmed that Matt Schaub will remain the starting quarterback for his team, at least for Houston’s Week 6 matchup with the St. Louis Rams.
This announcement has very little impact on Schaub’s fantasy value, which can’t get much lower, but it does help things for his receivers. Throwing picks doesn’t necessarily hurt a QB’s ability to generate fantasy value for his receivers, Eli Manning has proven that much this season. In fact, it might even be helpful on some occasions, with the interceptions setting up a situation in which WRs can rack up some garbage time points.
I’m not making any big adjustment to the fantasy value of Andre Johnson, Nuke Hopkins, or any other Texan. Things are bound to turn around for Schaub; they can’t possibly get any worse.
Megatron Set to Awaken from Cryogenic Hypersleep
Say it with me, “PHEW!”
Calvin Johnson wrecked more than a few weekends when he was a last-minute scratch against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, but he confirmed on Wednesday that he was “real close” to getting in the game.
Johnson didn’t practice Wednesday, but that’s nothing new. Keep your eye on the Detroit Lions injury report this week, but I expect to see Megatron back on the field this Sunday against Joe Haden and the Cleveland Browns.
The Lions offense was a disaster without him; I wouldn’t put too much faith in any other Detroit wide receiver, regardless of whether or not Johnson ends up taking the field.
DraftKings Defense/Special Teams Recommendations
If you’ve never played DraftKings before, it’s time to start. You’re reading this column, so I know you like fantasy football, and new depositors will get a free ticket into a Millionaire Grand Final qualifier, a contest that as me so excited, I wrote a whole damn article about it!
So yeah, I think you’ve got some signing up to do. Once you’re registered, check out the multitude of options DraftKings has to offer; I’m personally a big fan of the Double Up and Triple Up contests.
Week 5 was admittedly not my best effort, but let’s start off my riding the wave of one of the picks that did pay off last week.
They’re significantly more expensive than they were in first couple of weeks of the season, but there’s no reason to stop buying in on the Kansas City Chiefs ($4,900). Terrelle Pryor can throw a monkey wrench the best laid plans of any defense, but he’s not enough to overcome the fact that the Kansas City pass rush is overwhelming (especially at home) and the Oakland offensive line is absolutely awful.
The cost is a little bit more than I’d like to pay, but the San Francisco 49ers’ ($4,800) matchup against Carson Palmer and the Arizona Cardinals is just too juicy to pass up. By Total QBR, Palmer has been the third-worst full-time quarterback in football, worsted (that’s a word, right?) only by Blaine Gabbert and Eli Manning. That, combined with the chance that All-Universe linebacker Patrick Willis might be back, is going to make it very difficult for Arizona to get anything going on offense.
The Chicago Bears ($4,500) aren’t what they used to be on defense, but they’re still one of the best teams in football when it comes to forcing turnovers; we haven’t seen a turnover creator the likes of Eli Manning in years. Thursday nights are already sloppy enough, I can’t imagine how ugly things will get for the younger Manning with no running game and only three days to prepare.
Although a certain high-profile Houston Texan ($4,000) has been an object of intense public scrutiny, let’s not forget that J.J. Watt may very well be the best defensive football player on the planet. His presence alone against an average St. Louis offensive line is enough to make Houston a worthwhile buy.
The Detroit Lions ($3,800) are the quintessential example of a defense that’s better in fantasy than real life. They’ll give up some points, but Ndamukong Suh, Nick Fairley, and Ziggy Ansah will wreak enough havoc in the backfield to generate a few sacks, picks, and fumbles as well. Detroit’s defensive line will be in hot pursuit of concrete-footed Brandon Weeden this Sunday. In a game in which the Browns will presumably be trailing, and without any semblance of a running game, Weeden will likely be throwing early and often. Good thing his greatest weakness is his inability to make quick decisions and accurate throws under pressure
I just don’t understand the lack of respect for the New York Jets ($3,000) defense. Rex Ryan has been proven to be a lot of things, but let’s not let his side job as an occasional national punchline obscure the fact that this dude is a fantastic defensive coach. And oh by the way, the Pittsburgh Steelers are not a good team. The Jets should be able to get a lead in this game, allowing Ryan’s defense to tee off on Ben Roethlisberger. Big Ben has, slightly surprisingly, been a below average quarterback so far, according to Football Outsiders’ DVOA; his offensive line has, not at all surprisingly, been the eighth-worst in football in adjusted sack rate.