We are past the mid point of the 2015 fantasy football season and things are heating up. Playoff births begin to dance in owners’ eyes and it’s time to get our ducks in a row. You of course can’t see it, but I am indeed rubbing my hands together and grinning maniacally. It’s that time of year.
We saw some strong performances from rookie running backs last week as well as another gut-wrenching injury to a veteran. While it’s great to welcome Todd Gurley and T.J. Yeldon to the big-time fantasy scene, it’s tough see Arian Foster go down again.
Two weeks ago the wide receivers ruled the roost and last week we saw a resurgence by the running back position with 12 backs topping 100 yards rushing and 16 different backs reaching the end zone.
It will be interesting to see what position rises to the top in week 8.
Philip Rivers, SAN DIEGO:
Even in a blowout loss Rivers used garbage time to post top-10 fantasy totals in Week 7. Rivers is a top-five QB for the season and is now a stud.
Eli Manning, NEW YORK GIANTS at New Orleans: The Saints defense has been very generous to quarterbacks from a fantasy standpoint. They have allowed 14 passing and 16 total touchdowns to the position through seven games. Despite failing to toss a score last week, Eli is a great start this week and will add to the 11 touchdown passes he’s thrown to date.
Ryan Tannehill, MIAMI at New England: Ride the hot hand here as Tannehill is coming off a four-touchdown performance last week. Tannehill has had some recent success against the Pats having thrown six touchdowns in the past three games against New England. With the running game working well also look for some play-action passes this week against a depleted New England secondary.
Matthew Stafford, DETROIT at Kansas City (In London): Look for the changes to the Lions offensive coaching staff to revitalize Stafford and the passing game, even if only briefly. The Chiefs are a team that Detroit can pass the ball on having allowed 15 passing touchdowns this year. Look for Stafford to chuck the ball deep quite a bit this week across the pond.
Alex Smith, KANSAS CITY vs. Detroit (In London): Yes, we like both quarterbacks to shine from a fantasy standpoint Sunday morning in London. Smith should have Jeremy Maclin back this week and will be facing a struggling Detroit secondary. The Lions have given up six touchdowns through the air in the last three games and are allowing quarterbacks to complete 73% of their passes.
Jay Cutler, CHICAGO vs. Minnesota: The Vikings have been a stingy defense to quarterbacks this season allowing just 251 passing yards per game. Cutler has been his usual up-and-down self this year tossing seven touchdowns and turning the ball over five times. Minnesota sacked Matthew Stafford seven times last week and will be getting after Cutler all game long. That will lead to a few untimely Cutler mistakes.
Peyton Manning, DENVER vs. Green Bay: Manning is struggling mightily this season and simply doesn’t look anything like the quarterback we once knew. His passes lack velocity and he’s thrown three more interceptions than touchdowns to date. The Packers defense has allowed merely seven touchdown passes through six games. This is not a matchup for Peyton to post healthy numbers. Avoid him.
Drew Brees, NEW ORLEANS vs. New York Giants: In the last two games (both wins), the Saints have handed the ball off to running backs at least 30 times. In those games, Brees threw for two touchdowns and the team rushed for three. The commitment to the running game will continue to cap the fantasy potential of Brees. Also, the Giants have picked off 11 passes this season which tells me the Saints will use a ground and pound attack this week.
Derek Carr, OAKLAND vs. New York Jets: The Jets are tough on quarterbacks this season (not named Tom Brady) having allowed more than one touchdown in only two games. Darrelle Revis will take one of Carr’s receiving options away (more than likely Amari Cooper) and the potent defensive line will keep him off balance as they got to Brady three times last week. This is going to be a long day for the Raiders offense in general.