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Oasis or Facade?

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Week 1 gave us a variety of unlikely heroes. It was filled with some nice surprises and some flukes. As a fantasy owner, I look for more than one week of statistics before I can get excited about any new potential players for my team. The knee jerk reaction to drop and add when your team performs poorly will always be there. It’s important that you resist the temptation. The wire is a blessing and a curse!

All players look great crossing the stripe in Week 1 but few will repeat those performances week-in and week-out. These players are facades.

Facades

Shaun Draughn, RB, Kansas City

There are hardly enough carries to go around in Kansas City. The garbage time work is just that. I am suggesting merely that when Jamaal Charles and Peyton Hillis run well that there won’t be a peep from Draughn.

Anquan Boldin, WR, Baltimore

I have been a longtime supporter of Boldin. I simply don’t believe that with the targets that Dennis Pitta and Jacoby Jones are going to get that Boldin gets enough work to start him. I’m not even sure that was a touchdown in the game against the Bengals. There are better options out there. You have to love his toughness and his ability to go over the middle. He is worth a spot-start but he simply is no longer a guy who will outperform expectations. For that reason, I’m out.

Stephen Hill, WR, New York Jets

Hill converted 5-of-6 targets and had two touchdowns on Sunday. While the totals were a nice surprise, Mark Sanchez will not have that kind of game very often. One could argue that the size and speed combination is too good to pass on. Hill’s conditioning may be suspect as reports have him getting sick on the sidelines during Week 1’s contest. The Jets are like a three-ring circus with Tim Tebow standing over Sanchez’s shoulder and playing special teams. One thing that I will say, is that there will be games that Sanchez will complete more passes to opponents than touchdowns. For that reason, I’m out.

Alshon Jeffery, WR, Chicago

Take away the 42-yard touchdown and you have two catches for 38 yards. I like the potential toward the second half of the season, but he is not that guy to be relied on every week just yet. He does have a ton of potential, but the main looks go to Brandon Marshall. There isn’t enough to go around. He deserves a bench position and a spot start if the matchup looks enticing.

Can you see the common theme here? There won’t be enough to go around. Every Sunday there will be a grind-it-out game that is won on the defensive side of the ball in low-scoring games. Those are inevitable. Now let’s take a look at some folks that can really help you. They are what I call the fantasy oasis.

Oasis

Andre Roberts, WR, Arizona

You probably think I am joking after a mere five-catch, 54-yard performance. The proof is in the pudding. In the last three games in 2011, Roberts was targeted 28 times. He seemed to pick up right where he left off with nine targets in Week 1 of 2012. Let’s not forget the touchdown or the carry for 15 yards. He is extremely quick out of the break and has been finding soft spots in defenses.

I like what I see thus far, and regardless of which quarterback is at the helm, they only have to complete short passes. I like short passes in points-per-reception leagues and so should you. I bet you thought I was going to have Kevin Ogletree here. Shame on you!

Andrew Hawkins, WR, Cincinnati

Hawkins can really scoot, and one thing that the Bengals know is that it’s OK to take advantage of teams that expect the big receivers on the outside to do the work. His conversion rate is proof that he belongs.

Hawkins converted 8-of-9 targets for 89 yards. While he may not be a red zone factor due to the presence of larger receivers, he remains a threat to take it the distance on any play. I am placing a buy order on Hawkins this week. Sit him on your bench until you have the same confidence to plug him in.

Those are honestly the only two that I see some serious upside in, and while people will bend your ear that Alfred Morris deserves to be here, I don’t agree. Morris still plays for Mike Shanahan, and that is a can of worms of which I want zero part. It’s only a matter of time before it’s Roy Helu or Evan Royster. When that happens, you will not get any advance notice of your zero. It will happen to you.

Laurent Robinson looked exactly like Kevin Ogletree last year and was good in that Dallas Cowboys passing game. The thing that I don’t buy into is that there are enough targets to get his every week. Jason Witten played but was not anywhere near healthy enough to take on a full load. That being said, Ogletree will soon return from whence he came...the scrap heap. They say once is a fluke, twice is a pattern, and three times is a trend. The two receivers listed in oasis will show you a pattern soon enough. When they do, you can dismiss what I have said. Until then, put them on your radar.

Questions/comments/concerns to michaelfsarmento@gmail.com
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