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The Lowdown – Week 5

Welcome to
The Lowdown for Week 5. This is my little corner of the fantasy football universe—feel free to pull up a chair and stay a while!

New Patriots Dynasty?

If you read many of the football gurus or tune in to New England sports talk, you’d get the impression that the Patriots are on the verge of collapse: “Brady is frustrated with those rookie receivers”… “Amendola is out more than Ricky Martin”… “Too many injuries on defense”… “The running game is in tatters”… “Gronk is taking it easy and not hurrying back”… and so forth. The talk runs so negative that if you looked at the standings and saw that the Pats are 4-0, you’d be convinced there was some sort of mistake.

Ah, but there is no mistake. The Patriots are really 4-0, and one can only wonder how good they’ll be once they get back their full complement of stars, like
Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola, and
Shane Vereen. Hate on the Pats all you want, but this is a team that is maintaining a winning record while going throw a bit of rebuilding—and thus setting itself up for continued excellence for years to come.

Go Buc Yourself

Ah, it’s time once again for my favorite new rom-com,
Go Buc Yourself, starring
Greg Schiano and
Josh Freeman

When last we saw our protagonists, Greg had just benched Josh and taken away all his credit cards, while Josh pouted and secretly wished to be transported away from his tormentor…

In this week’s episode, Josh is searching the want ads and hitting the pavement in search of a new job. As place after place turns him down, Josh is shocked to find out from a shadowy, height-challenged undercover reporter that he’s having a tough time finding a job because of rumors—rumors that he’s in rehab!

Josh, reeling from the news, confronts Greg and accuses him of spreading the hateful rumors; Greg, still not willing to admit that it’s over between him and Josh, denies Josh’s allegations.

Will Greg break down and admit his love for Josh? Or will he turn his back on his young stud, allowing Josh to run into the arms of another? Has Josh been so hurt by Greg’s actions that he can never be the same again?

Stay tuned for more pointless drama in next week’s episode of…
Go Buc Yourself!


Bush League

This off-season, a friend of mine had come to a crossroad in his draft and asked me for some advice: Should he grab
David Wilson or
Reggie Bush as his RB? Without a moment’s hesitation, I responded “Bush.” My thinking was that in an aerial circus like Detroit’s the only thing that could derail Bush from being a top-10 back would be his affinity for getting injured. So how has my advice panned out?

While Wilson has stumbled, bumbled and fumbled his way into the hearts of New Yorkers, Bush has already dealt with an injury that caused him to miss a whopping 25% of his team’s games! (for those from the South or Midwest—the previous statement is an example of
sarcasm).

Look, the Lions offense has some nice talent on it, like WR
Calvin Johnson and
QB Matthew Stafford, but it also had some glaring holes: lack of a true WR2, RBs that were not explosive, and a hugely disappointing TE in
Brandon Pettigrew. But a lot of their problems went away the day they signed Reggie Bush. Bush is the perfect type of back to be playing in a pass-happy offense, where his speed and elusiveness are enhanced by the wide-open Lions’ offensive game plan—and the results have been pretty impressive. Despite having missed a game, Bush has racked up 254 rushing yards on 48 carries (5.3 ypc) as well as 11 catches for 179 yards (16.3 ypc)—pretty darn impressive numbers.


Calvin Johnson

is still the biggest star on this team, but Bush is the key to the Lions’ hopes this season: the Lions need to keep him healthy and involved in the game plan. Oh, they also need another legit receiver and a TE that can catch the ball. Just sayin’…


Jumping on the Bandwagon


After witnessing the Seahawks’ demolish the 49ers in Week 2 and their improbable comeback victory over the Texans this past week, I am now “all in” on the Seahawks Super Bowl hype. I loved their defense (especially that old-school secondary) and running game heading into the season, but I had stopped short of putting them in the Super Bowl for two reasons: (1) the injury to WR/RB/KR
Percy Harvin and (2) my perception that QB
Russell Wilson needed another year or two of seasoning.

While Wilson still needs to work his way into the upper tier of signal-callers, I don’t think he’s holding back the team. Harvin would’ve been a great weapon to have on the field, but at the end of the day, this team is all about dominance: dominating the time of possession with
Marshawn Lynch on offense and dominating the secondary on defense (I like that +7 turnover ratio).

Given that they don’t meet in the regular season, I’d love to see a Seattle-Denver Super Bowl, with the great
Peyton Manning and his outstanding receivers going up against
Richard Sherman and the rest of the Seahawks’ outstanding secondary. I’m salivating at the very thought of that match-up…

Interesting Players for Week 5

Not necessarily the players in line for the biggest games this week, but rather some players that caught my interest and upon whom I shall cast my gaze…


Denarius Moore, WR – Raiders

(vs. Chargers): Lost in the clamor over
Philip Rivers’ outstanding start has been the fact that the Chargers give up a lot of yards through the air (312 ypg, 29th in NFL). Moore’s YTD numbers are not very impressive (15/233/2), but if you look at the past two weeks you’ll see a receiver that looks like he might be heating up: 10 receptions for 190 yards and a score (and a nifty 19.0 ypc). If anyone looks to be in position to take advantage of a suspect Dolphins’ secondary, it’s Moore.


Maurice Jones-Drew, RB – Jaguars

(vs. Rams): Let’s face it, he’s having a horrible year… but the Rams are giving up the third-most rushing yards per game. This week 
Adrian Peterson, Le’Veon Bell, Doug Martin and
Alfred Morris are all sitting due to a bye, this might be MJD’s last chance to perform for fantasy owners. Starting MJD this week should resolve a lot of questions—the primary one being: If he can’t do well against the Rams’ defense, does he even deserve to be on a fantasy roster?

Ironically, the Jaguars defense gives up the
most rushing yards in the league, but there’s no one on the Rams that I could recommend to you with a straight face.


Robert Quinn, DE – Rams

(vs. Jaguars): With the trade of OL
Eugene Monroe to the Ravens, the Jaguars’ offensive line is in flux. Depending on how tackles
Luke Joeckel and
Austin Pasztor have adjusted to their new positioning, either DE
Chris Long or Quinn (or both) should be able to wreak some havoc on
Blaine Gabbert. I’m putting money on Quinn to be the one to up his sack totals here, as he has appeared unblockable at times this season.


Joe Flacco, QB – Ravens

(vs. Dolphins): I’m willing to cut Flacco a break after last week’s horrible outing (25-of-50 for 347 passing yards, 2 TD/5 INT)… only three of his five INTs were his fault. Facing the Dolphins this week, it would seem that the path of least resistance for the Ravens offense would be through the air (Miami is #10 vs. the run, #24 vs. the pass). I think Flacco rebounds to have a solid outing against the Fins, something along the lines of 280 yards and 2 TDs. Should be even higher if
Ed Dickson figures out how to hang on to a pass or two…

Don’t forget to bench any players from
Minnesota, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, or
Washington, who are on a bye this week.


John T. Georgopoulos is an 18-year veteran of fantasy sports journalism. John’s
Fantasy Forecast series has won the prestigious Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) award for Best Series, and he’s been nominated as an FSWA Award finalist on eight occasions. You can also listen to his weekly non-sports opinions


here

or follow him on Twitter
@ThatRiotShow


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