It will be tough to top last week as far as my late picks go especially the economy selections. Last week my $4,600 running back scored 17.7 fantasy-points, my $4,100 wide receiver scored 29.9 fantasy-points and my $3,200 tight end 23.8 fantasy-points. While week nine will be tough to top, I will try my best to do just that. Here are the players I like in this week’s late slate of games:
Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay, $9,400 — Rodgers versus Peyton Manning is the question this week among the elite, late quarterbacks. I like Rodgers more because he is $300 cheaper, is at home and has a more favorable matchup. Look for Rodgers to put up a nice game against a Chicago defense that ranks last against opposing quarterbacks this season.
Mark Sanchez, Philadelphia, $5,400 — Talk about an economy selection… You will not find a cheaper starting quarterback this week than Sanchez. Sure, he is a risk to give you five points. But, he looked good after Nick Foles went down Sunday. More importantly, Carolina ranks 25th against quarterbacks this season. If you want to save a lot of money at QB to spend elsewhere this week, Sanchez is a good option for you.
Matt Forte, Chicago, $10,000 — No, you will not find a more expensive player than Forte this week. Yes, he is worth that much. Green Bay ranks 22nd against opposing running backs this season, Forte managed to put up 25.1 fantasy points the last time he faced the Packers, and you have to think that the Bears want to limit the potential for Jay Cutler to turn the ball over, meaning more runs and short passes.
Marshawn Lynch, Seattle, $6,700 — A 3.2 yards-per-carry average against Oakland is not very impressive; good thing for Lynch that he also ran for two touchdown, had five receptions and 76 receiving yards. Odds are low that Lynch has 70+ receiving yards again this week; they are much higher that he finds the end zone at least once against a Giants defense that ranks 28th against opposing running backs this season.
Darren Sproles, Philadelphia, $4,800 — Remember last season when Carolina had a good defense? Well, forget about that defense when setting your teams this season, the Panthers D is bad. They rank next to last against running back this season. Sproles does not see a ton of touches, but does a lot with the ones he gets. He is a solid play if you are looking for a cheap RB this week.
Darren McFadden, Oakland, $4,400 — Unlike Sproles, touches have not been a problem for McFadden who has had 15 or more touches in seven of Oakland’s nine games this season. McFadden is a total price pick. I am not expecting a big game, but he is cheap, will get touches, and think there is a decent chance he finds the end zone this week.
Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia, $8,300 — As I mentioned earlier, the Carolina defense has not been very good this season. On the other hand, Maclin has been very good this season, and has been great the last two game — 82.5 fantasy points the last two games. Sure, there is some risk with Mark Sanchez as his quarterback this week, but it did not hurt him against Houston, and Carolina does not have as good a defense as Houston does.
Jordy Nelson, Green Bay, $7,600 — I am a big fan of going with guys coming off a bad game, at least when they are good players. Nelson managed only 5.5 fantasy-points in his last game, which was not good if you owned him in week eight, but also helps depress his price-tag this week. Nothing special about Nelson’s matchup — it is average — I just think he bounces back with a good game this week.
Percy Harvin, New York Jets, $5,300 — It only took nine weeks and a trade to propel Harvin to his first “monster” game of the season as he put up 27.7 fantasy points up against Kansas City last Sunday. Sure, it took 11 receptions and a touchdown to get there, but Harvin did have a nice game against a solid defense. He once again draws a solid — but not great — defense this week. Harvin is far from a sure thing, but I think there is potential upside from him and he is priced below average this week.
Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina, $4,200 — Shocked is what I was when I saw Benjamin’s salary for week ten. I suppose there are reasons for the low price: Carolina’s offense is struggling, he will be playing on the road, and he managed only 3.8 fantasy-points against New Orleans. There are also a number of reasons to like him this week. He has averaged 14.5 fantasy-points per game, he is averaging 18.2 fantasy-points per game on the road, and Philadelphia ranks 28th against wide receivers this season.
Middle Priced Tight End
Martellus Bennett, Chicago $5,600 — Solid best describes Bennett this week. He has a slightly favorable matchup — Green Bay ranks 18th against tight ends this season — and has scored over ten fantasy points in his last three games. He has only had one bad fantasy game all season and has had four games with over 20 fantasy points. The late slate of games is not great for tight ends, but Bennett is the best option among the higher priced ones.
Bargain Tight End
Mychal Rivera, Oakland, $3,800 — I am not one to brag generally, but I am very proud of my call on Rivera last week. I never imagined he would put up 23.8 fantasy points, but he was my favorite cheap tight end in week nine — and the one I used on my team. Rivera gets a price increase this week but not a huge one; he once again has a nice matchup.
Arizona, $3,400 — Arizona scores an average of 8.1 fantasy-points per game, and is at home facing the second most favorable offense for a defense to face. Not the most in-depth analysis, but I think quite sufficient to explain why I like the Cardinals D this week.
Seattle, $3,000 — The Seattle defense got 13 points the hard way against Oakland — two interceptions, one fumble recovery, one sack, and one defensive touchdown. The 24 points allowed to Oakland is not ideal, but the turnovers were nice. Seattle has four interceptions at home this season and is facing Eli Manning who has been known to throw a few picks.
Good luck to you this week; you can catch me on Twitter @STCDub.