The HOT/COLD List, Week 4
Welcome back to another week of my HOT/COLD list. As usual, this list is not a rankings post. By that, I mean that just because Knowshon Moreno is HOT and C.J. Spiller is COLD does not mean I suggest starting the Broncos’ RB over the Bills’ one. It just means that relative to that players’ expectations, I believe that Moreno will perform well and Spiller will underwhelm. Both the HOT and COLD sections will be laid out like an actual fantasy football team (QB, 2RB, 2WR, TE, D/ST,) Without further ado….
QB: Tony Romo – Fantasy football is all about match-ups, and week 4 is no different. So when Dallas plays San Diego in week 4, I like my chances. Let me explain: The Chargers are LAST in pass defense this year… in every category. In there 3 games so far, San Diego has played Matt Schaub (23 fantasy points), Michael Vick (34 fantasy points), and Jake Locker (27 fantasy points). Tony Romo is arguably the 2nd most (if not most) talented player of that group, and I expect a huge day for him.
RB1: Darren Mcfadden – Last week, DMC had 12 carries for 9 yards and 0 touchdowns on the ground, yet he still had double digit fantasy points. How? He threw for a touchdown! Oakland is trying to get him involved in a variety of ways and it’s paying off for fantasy owners as Mcfadden has scored 10 or more fantasy points each week this season. I love his chances this week against the “defense” of the Redskins who are 30th in the NFL at stopping the run.
RB2: Knowshon Moreno – Moreno had 22 fantasy points in week 2, 3 points in week 3, so by that trend he is due for a 44 point fantasy game. While that won’t happen, I do believe that he will have a very solid game against an Eagles defense that has struggled against the run all year, most recently Jamaal Charles last week. The Broncos are going to want to keep the ball away from the Eagles and giving Moreno carries is the most effective way to do that.
WR1: Torrey Smith – Buffalo (the Ravens opponent this week) gave up 2 touchdowns of 50+ yards last week to the Jets. Torrey Smith makes his living on the big play which is why he should have a big game this week. Joe Flacco is struggling to trust anyone else and so he looks to Smith early and often which gives him more opportunities to make more big plays.
WR2: Julian Edelman – Danny Amendola and Rob Gronkowski will not play against Atlanta this week, which means Brady is stuck once again with Edelman and the rookies. The Falcons have given up more receptions and yardage to slot receivers than anyone else in the NFL this year. You know Brady is going to throw it to him, and with the Atlanta defense incapability of stopping the slot, look for Edelman to produce a big game.
TE: Heath Miller – Steelers fans loved to see Miller back on the field last week against the Bears, however, he did not produce much from a fantasy perspective as he managed only 35 receiving yards. While maybe he doesn’t get too many more this week, the Steelers are playing the Vikings who have given up 6 touchdowns to tight ends this year, including 3 to Jordan Cameron last week. All Heath needs is a touchdown on Sunday to produce for your fantasy team, and I like those odds.
D/ST: Indianapolis Colts – Coach Chuck Pagano filled his teams’ locker room with mousetraps this week to avoid a “trap game” against the Jaguars. However, I think he should just trot out 11 mousetraps on defense tomorrow, Blaine Gabbert would still throw an interception.
QB: Eli Manning – Combined, Eli and Peyton have just 8 interceptions this year. Except Eli has all 8 of them. Combine Eli’s tendency to turn the ball over, the Giants’ lack of any type of offensive line, the Chiefs ferocious pass rush (they lead the NFL in sacks) and week 4 is just a recipe for disaster for Manning. Don’t start him if you can help it.
RB1: C.J. Spiller – Before getting hurt last week, Spiller had just 10 carries for 9 yards. While he is expected to play on Sunday, Fred Jackson’s re-emergence has made Spiller less essential to the Bills’ success on offense. Combined with his risk of re-injury, I just don’t think Spiller will get enough carries to eclipse 80 yards.
RB2: Ryan Mathews – He has scored just 5 fantasy points for two weeks in a row now and he just does not scare defenses the way the Chargers thought he would when they drafted him. Playing the Cowboys, who shut down the Rams running attack last week, I don’t see how Mathews can be worth a fantasy start.
WR1: Larry Fitzgerald – Hamstring injuries are always tricky to deal with, and Fitz has had that problem for multiple weeks now. The Cardinals play the Buccaneers this week which means Larry will be stranded on Revis Island all game long. He just barely squeaked in to my top 20 rankings this week.
WR2: Andre Johnson – His situation is almost identical to Fitzgerald: an injured receiver going up against a great cornerback. Johnson has been dealing with both a concussion and a shin injury for more than a week now and going against Richard Sherman and the rest of the Seahawks defense is hardly ideal.
TE: Rob Gronkowski – Not much to say here: Gronk has been ruled out for Sunday night’s game.
D/ST: Philadelphia Eagles – Please don’t start the Eagles defense against the Broncos this week, just please don’t do it. Denver has averaged over 40 points per game and the Eagles have allowed almost 30 per game.