September 23, 2011

Week 3 Bank/Tank

 By: Christian Hardy
After all of the number crunching, the matchup hunting, and trend-setting stat finding  in the last few days and you've got an all new Bank/Tank. I realize that last week my tanks were really, well, awful; but on the flipside, my banks were near perfect. But with all of that, it's time to get this show on the road. First up: quarterbacks

Cam Newton vs Jacksonville - While this is obvious for some, others may be questioning him. Can he do it again? I think he can. Just take a look at my rankings. I ranked the rookie at number two only behind NFL leading passer Tom Brady. Not only has he attempted the fourth most passes in the league, but he also has a great matchup. If Cam Newton throws the pigskin 40 times or more this week, he is going to pick this Jaguars defense apart.

Matt Ryan @ Tampa Bay – This one is also a pretty easy one. The Buccaneers pass defense has been torched in the first two weeks against Matthew Stafford and Donavan McNabb. Matthew Stafford completely went off and McNabb threw for over 220 yards in the week after he threw for just 39. With the offense at its peak, Ryan is going to air it out this week, and he is going to air it out often. Make sure this guy is in your lineup if you have him.

Extra: Matt Hasselbeck

Eli Manning @ Philadelphia – Not only did Manning look god awful on Monday Night Football, but now he is actually playing a respectable pass defense. With the way he has played in these first two days, I would recommend the Giants keep it on the ground against the Eagles. I know he was without his receivers last game, but even with his main guys (most of the first half) he was extremely inaccurate. Don’t play Manning this week, even if both of his parents are there to watch him.

Josh Freeman vs Atlanta – With only two touchdowns (and two interceptions) in the first two games, I am really not feeling Josh Freeman. I was high on him very early in the preseason, but as it went on, his stock continued to fall. Blount was much more involved in the offense last week and it may go up even more this week. If Freeman isn’t hitting his guys in the redzone then he isn’t going to get you the easy fantasy points. Simple as that. Sit Freeman this week.

Running Backs
BenJarvus Green-Ellis @ Buffalo – We all know the Buffalo run defense is bad. That is a fact. But why is Green-Ellis going to get more carries this week? The Aaron Hernandez injury. With Hernandez gone from that offense I think we are going to see the Patriots pound the ball more, and who does that best? THE Lawfirm. If he can get the carries, he could put on a clinic against the weak Bills rush defense.

Mark Ingram vs Houston – Ingram hasn’t looked great in his first two starts and I acknowledge that. But Ingram is still getting the majority of the Saints’ goal line touches, and it's only a matter of time before he finds the end zone. The Texans haven’t given up a rushing touchdown yet, but they had easy matchups in both weeks one and two (Colts and Dolphins). That’s why, even though many will be reluctant about it, Mark Ingram is a viable flex play this week, and I would put money on him recording a tally in the TD column.

Extra: Darren Sproles, Ben Tate

Beanie Wells @ Seattle – Yeah, yeah I hear ya. Wells is averaging 5.7 yards per carry blah, blah, blah. Really though, who was he playing? You look at the matchups and you see Carolina and Washington. Both teams aren’t really known as run stoppers. Seattle, his opponent this week and division rival, has allowed 3 TDs which does give Wells a good chance to find the end zone, but I think Kolb is going to exploit their weakness: the passing game. Look for the Cardinals to air it out, not run the ball on Sunday.

DeAngelo Williams vs Jacksonville – This one is pretty easy. DWill has gotten just 17 carries in the last two games combined (only five against Green Bay last week) and he isn’t all that involved in the pass game either. With Newton under center this team is going to throw, throw, and throw some more. Until Deangelo Williams becomes a part of this offense again, he is going to make a real warm spot on the pine.

Extra: Reggie Bush

Wide Receivers
Dez Bryant vs Washington – Did you see what Miles Austin did to San Francisco’s defense last week as the only WR that Romo could trust? That could be Dez Bryant this week. Granted, he also has Witten who is going to steal a few looks here and there. But Bryant was Romo’s redzone favorite against the Jets in week one and why not again? You have to start Dez this week. I am expecting a huge game.

Eric Decker @ Tennessee- Last week Decker stole the show. Some owners popped him into their line up just minutes before the game and boy did it pay off. With Eddie Royal out for a couple weeks, Decker steps up into an obvious WR2 slot. Even with Lloyd back, who does Tennessee have at corner after Cortland Finnegan that can cover this guy? No one? That’s what I thought. Decker might not duplicate last week, but I think he might come close to it.

Extra: Kevin Ogletree, AJ Green, Brandon LaFell

Reggie Wayne vs Pittsburgh – Yeah, the Steelers have a good defense. But what is the real reason I hate Wayne this week? Kerry Collins. Collins isn’t going to have time to find Wayne downfield this week (has he ever had that time?). Not only that, but the Steelers have yet to allow a receiver to go over 13 fantasy points this season and that was Anquan Boldin with Joe Flacco under center. This is Kerry Collins, and I don’t want Wayne in my lineup this week. Don;'t let it Wayne on your day.

Dwayne Bowe @ San Diego – I missed (not badly, but I missed) on Dwayne last week. He decided to actually be relevant in week two against the Lions. But this is week three, and the Chiefs' offense is going to be so awful without Jamaal Charles and Tony Moeaki, I’m not sure I would ever start Bowe again. What are his chances of finding the endzone? I’m legitimately sure that Bowe is going to be hunting for the endzone, not finding it. Keep him on your bench against a good pass defense.

Extra: Hakeem Nicks,  Mike Williams (Tampa)

Tight Ends
Rob Gronkowski @ Buffalo – Another benefit of Aaron Hernandez being out (one of the many things I hate to say: someone’s gain from another’s injury) is Rob Gronkowski. He is going to get targets added to his already huge abundance of them. Tom Brady is loving his TEs, why should that stop this week?

Others: Jermichael Finley

Dallas Clark vs Pittsburgh – I really wanted to put Antonio Gates in this spot but I’m sure he will rebound in week three. Anyways, on with Dallas Clark. Pittsburgh allowed Ed Dickson to have a worthy performance in week one, but who didn’t that week for Baltimore? It was a disaster for the Steelers. With Collins under the heat of the Steelers blitz and more and more passes going away from Clark, I think you can find a better option this week.

Extra: Brandon Pettigrew

Well, that’s all for me. My next article will be out sometime on Saturday and it will be my game picks including my start/sit. I hope you guys enjoyed this one. If you have any fantasy football questions, I am always on Twitter and I love reader's questions or you can email me and I will get back to you with a quality answer (well, most of the time..). I’ll talk to you on Saturday!

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