Reunited at Last
I was so sure that Jermichael Finley was going to be a star last week that despite his injury I decided to tell everyone to start him. I was wrong. Apparently I would be wrong to put him on here for the next 8-10 weeks … the guy is going to be a great player, it’s just unfortunate his season may be ending prematurely due to injury.
Besides the Jermichael Finley debacle of Week 5, I had another solid week. Jason Witten and Tony Romo finally hooked up for a score… just like Mexico. Zach Miller proved that the revolving door that the Raiders decided to install at the QB position on Sunday made no difference as he continued to roll for his third straight week with a touchdown. The Dynamic Duo of Detroit, Brandon Pettigrew and Tony Scheffler, combined for 8 catches, 64 yards and a touchdown as the Lions finally got away with a clean win. Finally, my lowly sitting tight ends did not disappoint… or they did, depends on your perspective. Regardless, my four “Sit” picks combined for a total of 95 yards and zero touchdowns. Two of the four, Greg Olsen and Joel Dreessen, came up completely empty with zero catches on a combined four targets.
This week I have focused my attention upon opposites. In Week 6 a few of my guys will be seeing each other from opposite sidelines, while others will be at flip flopping Start/Sit positions from last week. This just goes to show that the fantasy football game is a mercurial one where no player is a sure thing, breakouts are always on the horizon and you are never, ever, safe at the top.
Heath Miller vs. CLE
The Steelers are at home, coming off of a Bye week, and most importantly their starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is returning to the lineup from suspension. Big Ben’s return will obviously be the biggest factor of all, especially with its influence upon tight end Heath Miller. In order to get Roethlisberger comfortable in a game situation again, the Steelers may resort to a slightly conservative game plan and allow Roethlisberger to check down and regain his rhythm. This restrained attack, combined with the fact that Miller is one of Roethlisberger’s favorite targets, will finally give Miller’s fantasy owners a boost.
Just to give you an idea of how much Roethlisberger’s absence has meant to Heath Miller:
Through 4 games in 2009 w/ Roethlisberger: 24 Rec. for 181 yds. and 2 TD
Through 4 games in 2010 w/out Roethlisberger: 10 Rec. for 100 yds and 0 TD
Tony Gonzalez @ PHI
Recently Tony Gonzalez has definitely been showing his age. Every week is kind of a mystery and you are never really sure what you are going to get out of him. Despite that fact, to be honest, I would take a Gonzalez at 85% over most of the tight end talent in the NFL. The guy can still play and he has a young stud QB in Matt Ryan who has been on fire as of late, so don’t overlook the guy on your roster just yet.
This week Gonzalez and co. take on the Eagles in Philly, which is not exactly going to be easy, especially since the Eagles sport the 10th best pass defense in the NFL. Even with that in mind I’m picking Gonzalez to come up big this week because the Eagles D has given up 2 100+ yd games to tight ends already this season and a TD in the last two, which leads me to believe the issue has simply not been addressed. Plus, the Eagles D will have their hands full with Michael Turner up front and Roddy White on the outside, which could open up some lanes for Gonzalez over the middle and in the Red Zone.
Mercedes Lewis vs. TEN
I’ll be up front about this one, I do not know much about the guy besides the fact that pretty much all he does is catch touchdowns. Mercedes Lewis is not going to get you a lot of points in PPR leagues as he only has 16 on the year, but out of those 16 catches, 5 of those were in the End Zone. This is an impressive fact since he resides on a run heavy Jacksonville team that is up and down every week. Now Lewis faces a Tennessee Titans defense that has been suspect at best. They currently rank 27th in pass defense and have been susceptible to giving up big plays to tight ends (84 yds and a TD on only 5 catches to Jason Witten last weekend).
Tony Moeaki @ HOU
Kansas City showed their worth against the Colts last week, at least on the defensive side of the ball. The Chiefs offense sputtered and flared out as they seemingly refused to throw the ball down field and mainly stick to the screen and quick slant game. Moeaki was only targeted 4 times last week (for 4 catches), but I expect that number to jump this week as the Chiefs rebound in Houston on Sunday.
Moeaki leads the Chiefs in receptions and receiving yards and definitely has the biggest upside if Matt Cassel can hit his stride coming into the middle part of the season. I am guessing that will begin this weekend against the Texans’ league worst passing defense that has given up a total of 36 receptions for 362 yards and 4 touchdowns to tight ends in their 5 games so far.
And here is who to sit in Week 6:
Benjamin Watson @ PIT
Ben Watson has been quietly putting together a nice season for the Browns and would probably be getting more headlines if it weren’t for the emergence of Peyton Hillis. Watson leads the Browns in catches (23), receiving yards (230), targets (25), touchdowns, and yards after the catch, but that was with veteran QBs throwing him the football. This week there is a very good chance that untested rookie Colt McCoy could take over at quarterback, which could spell disaster for Watson owners. There is just far too much uncertainty with a rookie quarterback going up against one of the premier defenses in the league for me to recommend starting this guy, at least this week.
As a side note, WR Josh Cribbs has more pass attempts this season than McCoy has in the NFL (2 to 0).
Brent Celek vs. ATL
There has just been too much flux in the Philadelphia Eagles offense for Celek to really find his place and gain a rhythm. He has yet to catch more than 4 passes in a game or brake 50 yards receiving in a game, which is surprising considering how integral he has been to their past successes. Yes, he has made it into the End Zone in each of the last two games, but with big play guys like Jeremy Maclin, DeSean Jackson, and LeSean McCoy needing their touches, Celek’s Red Zone targets could be limited in the coming weeks. The Falcons defense has struggled at times against the pass, but has only given up more than 50 yards to a tight end once so far. I just do not see Celek matching up well against the pesky Falcons who have proven that they may be the class of the NFC South.
Jason Witten @ MIN
Last week he was a stud, this week, not so much. The Dallas Cowboys will have their work cut out for them this week when they travel to Minnesota. Although they are listed as having the 3rd best passing attack in the NFL, I find those stats to be slightly exaggerated. The Boys have played 3 of the bottom 5 passing defenses in the league, and the stoutest defense they have faced so far was ranked a lowly 19th. The Vikings, on the other hand, are coming off of a disappointing loss at the NY Jets and sport the 6th best pass D in the NFL. What does all this mean to Jason Witten fans out there? Well, the Vikings have only allowed 134 yards to tight ends on the year, and held one of the leagues hottest players at the position, Dustin Keller, to 0 catches on only 1 target. These guys know how to shut down the big men off the line and have plenty of speed and size in their linebacking corps to keep up with the best of them. This week we will see what the Cowboys, and Jason Witten, are worth, I’m just afraid it won’t be as much as we were expecting.
Fuente: Fantasy Knuckleheads