The NFL season is finally here. That means fantasy football, 14 straight hours in my recliner and meatball subs. All is right with the world again.
This season The Feeding Frenzy will focus primarily on the trading aspect of fantasy football. I’m the type of guy who likes to win my fantasy league but I LOVE playing fantasy football even more.
My favorite part of fantasy sports is trying to stay ahead of the curve on trades and acquiring players at the right time of the season. So every week throughout the year I’ll be looking at which players to buy-low and sell-high.
It’s never too early to start improving your roster. In my opinion fantasy owners not looking to improve their roster the second their draft is over are already falling behind. If you’re in a competitive league then you know the key to winning a championship is staying one step ahead of everyone else. That’s what I’ll try to help fantasy owners accomplish all season long in this column.
So, here’s to a great season and hopefully some fantasy titles will be won when it’s all said and done. Now here are the players I’m advising to buy-low and sell-high on after Week 1.
Jacquizz Rodgers, RB Falcons – Get him and get him now.
I was so high on Rodgers this summer that I referred to Michael Turner as the starter in name only. While Rodgers didn’t play a lot in Week 1, you saw why I was saying that about Turner. It’s just over. I don’t know what more people need to see.
Turner is an aging power back that no longer fits what the Falcons are doing on offense. It’s that simple. A guy like Turner can’t get 11 touches a game. Turner is a waste of space if that’s how he’s going to be used. Turner is a guy who wears defenses down, he isn’t the kind of back that maximizes his touches.
Let’s go to New Orleans and look at Darren Sproles. No one in their right mind thinks Sproles should get 20 carries a game. The reason he’s so productive is he maximizes his touches. In other words if Sproles gets 15 touches there’s a chance he turns two or three of those into big plays. Turner isn’t that kind of back. You know who is? Jacquizz Rodgers.
We saw glimpses of that on Rodgers’ 77-yard kickoff return. Rodgers doesn’t need 20 carries to make something happen. He only needs 12-15 touches. If the Falcons want to play fast on offense, sooner or later, they’re going to realize having Turner in the backfield is simply a waste of time.
The other thing is Turner is close to done. All you have to do is watch the guy to know that much. Turner had a run on Sunday where if he made one cut he would have gone 23 yards for a score. Instead he ran up the back of his center and lost a yard. I really believe Rodgers gallops to the end zone on that play. I’m betting the Falcons offensive coaches are smart enough to see that on film, too.
Now Turner has been a warrior for the Falcons. This is no slam on him as a player. Heck, Eddie George was a beast and the same thing happened to him. He got old overnight. Turner simply doesn’t fit into what Atlanta is trying to do on offense anymore. I understand the coaches want to be loyal to him and not just pull the plug, but soon they’ll have to get Rodgers on the field more.
I got Rodgers on my teams before the season. This is a perfect time for you to do the same. Even though Turner looked awful you’ll read things like “Rodgers only played in garbage time.” That’s great for fantasy owners. Now Rodgers’ value has actually gone down.
People who think like that aren’t looking at the big picture. If you do look at the big picture, Rodgers is a player you should target this week.
Cedric Benson, RB Packers – Benson never had a shot in Week 1 against the 49ers. It was a perfect storm against him but I think there are better days ahead for Benson.
In my opinion the 49ers have the best defense in the NFL and it’s not close. People like to throw around teams like the Steelers and Ravens, but they’re wrong. Those teams have a great defense against Cleveland but when they face an offense that can throw the ball they usually get lit up. The 49ers are the one defense in the NFL that can shut down the really good passing attacks. I think that’s what sets them apart.
On Sunday, Benson predictably had no place to run but he did have nine carries. No other running back on the team recorded a carry. Now the Packers are never going to be a running team and Benson will almost never carry the ball 20 times in a game.
That’s not what I’m saying here. What I’m saying is Benson can be Michael Bush. On Sunday, Bush rushed for 42 yards and two scores. That’s what I’m looking for out of Benson. I think those numbers are within reach most weeks.
I mention Benson to people and they don’t get it. They say Green Bay doesn’t run the ball and they aren’t built to run it. That’s fine but can they run it from a yard out? Because if they can Benson has fantasy value. Here’s the bottom line; the Packers have a lot of red zone scoring opportunities and Benson is going to get most of those carries. That’s a pretty good deal.
I like Benson as a flex play in the Packers offense but a lot of owners could be down on him after he only got nine carries against the Niners. If you can get Benson on the cheap this week I think you’ll be very happy for the rest of the season. No other Green Bay running back is even in the mix right now and I won’t be surprised if Benson ends up with 10 touchdowns at the end of the season. Now is the time to jump on him though.