2015 Fantasy FootballFantasy Football

2015 Fantasy Football: Week 8 Gold Mine

The 2015 NFL season has had more ups and downs than the hills of San Francisco. Now that we have officially lost yet another top tiered HB to a non-contact injury, it is time to just give up on the idea that we are going to get past the injuries.

We’ve known for years that injuries happen and they happen at times for no reason, but in a year that has seen more top 10 players at their respective positions to go down for extended period of times, it seems as if they are happening just to spite us.

Add the injuries to the sheer number of players who aren’t performing well or consistently the way we had projected, and you could find yourself struggling quite a bit in your respective leagues.

The Wednesday / Thursday waiver wires are as important as they come now a days. If you are one of those players unlucky enough to deal with the injuries that have occurred, you need to make sure you’re getting the right value out of players who are available. However, there are plenty of players that are missed quite a bit on waiver wires that can prove to be helpful for you as we head into the week’s slate.

With that said, let’s take a look at this weeks breakdown of players who are owned in less than 35% of ESPN Leagues. As always if you don’t play on ESPN do not worry, we will provide you with each player’s percentage of ownership in Yahoo and NFL leagues as well as their salaries for Fanduel and Draftkings.

Ryan Fitzpatrick (NYJ): ESPN: 31.5; Yahoo: 35; NFL: 14.5; FD: 7.4K; DK: 5.2K

I don’t normally like to push the same player in multiple weeks but when fantasy players are openly disregarding a player that can put up the points like Fitz can, it just has to be done. Ryan Fitzpatrick has now compiled at least 23 fantasy points in back-to-back weeks and has thrown for at least two touchdowns in every week except for in the London game against Miami. Can you really blame him for that one though? The Chris Ivory show was in full affect that week, which of course took away Fitz’s opportunity for his second touchdown. The Jets may have a bit of an issue this week, not because of the match up, but because they are traveling from the east coast to the west coast. While the disadvantage is not as big as it is for west coast teams coming east it still can provide struggles of its own. The Raiders are ranked as the 22nd team against opposing QBs this year and are coming off 31 fantasy points allowed to Philip Rivers last week. Fitzpatrick currently ranks just inside the top 12 and has been a QB1 on the year, but for some reason he is owned in fewer leagues than 12 other QBs, some of which are outside of the top 24 on the year.

Stevie Johnson (SD): ESPN: 27.2; Yahoo: 43; NFL: 7.8; FD: 5.9K; DK: 3.2K

After a few weeks of missing time due to injury, Stevie Johnson jumped back into the thick of things nearly right where he left off. Despite failing to find the end zone for his third straight game, his 50 Week 7 receiving yards mark his fourth game of at least 45 yards. With Antonio Gates expected to miss his second straight game,Johnson should become a recipient of those targets, as defenders will attempt to key on Keenan Allen in an attempt to slow down the Chargers prolific passing game. The Chargers get to take on the Ravens this week, who are currently ranked as the 2nd worst defense to opposing wide outs in the league. The Baltimore natives have given up at least two touchdowns four times and at least 150 yards receiving six times to wide receivers this season.

Brian Hoyer (HOU): ESPN: 17; Yahoo: 15; NFL: 4.2; FD: 6.9K; DK: 5.3K

Here is another QB that is being disrespected because of his past and his name. Hoyer’s 17 percent ownership in ESPN leagues is laughable. The former New England Patriot / Tom Brady pupil is now the sole leader of the Texans offense now that Ryan Mallet has been officially released. Since returning to the starting gig four weeks ago, Hoyer has hit at least 232 yards passing in each game with at least 273 yards in each of his last three games. Hoyer’s 5:1 touchdown to interception ratio is equally as impressive to his increasing yardage numbers as he now has ten touchdowns to just two interceptions over that four game span. The Texans match up may not be as enticing as other matchups out there but the Titans are ranked outside of the top 10 and closer to the middle of the pack than the front when it comes to stopping opposing signal callers. Ranked 14th in the league, the Tennessee Titans have given up at least one passing TD in every game this year and at least 17 fantasy points in five of their six games. The loss of Arian Foster for the season, the consistency of DeAndre Hopkins and the emergence of Nate Washington should keep the pedal to the metal for Hoyer and the Houston passing game.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins (TB): ESPN: 15.6; Yahoo: 39; NFL: 6.9; FD: 5.2K; DK: 2.8

We have come a long way since originally touting Austin Seferian-Jenkins as the next big thing at tight end earlier this year, and then he got injured and fell below radar. Since ASJ’s week 1 performance of 110 yards on five receptions and two touchdowns he has only two receptions for 29 yards since then much of which is due to his injured shoulder. Seferian-Jenkins is expected to make a return to the field at the perfect time for his value to be extremely high. Vincent Jackson is expected to miss a few weeks due to his knee injury and Louis Murphy being out for the season with a torn ACL in his right knee makes for Jenkins to get a bulk of the targets left behind. Mike Evans is of course still in play this week and beyond, but Jameis Winston can’t just throw the ball towards Evans. ASJ is still very much on the injury report and was listed as limited in practice Thursday, but if he is on the field ,he has all the tools to take advantage of the opportunity and the match up. The Atlanta Falcons are the 27th ranked team against TEs and have given up at least one touchdown in three of their last four games to the position.

David Cobb (TEN): ESPN: 14.6; Yahoo: 23; NFL: 2.8; FD: 4.7K; DK: N/A

Admittedly this pick here is more of a precautionary one than it is one that you should expect immediate value from. Still technically on IR, David Cobb isn’t going to provide you with any value until the team officially lifts that designation, which is expected to happen next week. Cobb, a first year player out of Minnesota, is looking to get on the field for the first time this season next week, and, according to reports in Tennessee, is expected to take on an extended role with plenty of opportunities once he suits up. A four-year Golden Gopher, Cobb put up more than 2800 yards rushing in his final two seasons at the school with 20 touchdowns and another 339 yards in the passing game. Although not necessarily known for his pass catching ability he is explosive out of the backfield and impressed several NFL scouts leading up to the draft. With the way the Titans backfield has been going around carousel style this season David Cobb could be the ray of hope the Titans have needed out of the position. The Titans will take on the Saints in week 9 who are currently the 10th worst defense in the league to opposing HBs. If the reports are true and Cobb gets a large portion of the touches he can be expected to put together a good line.

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