James Morris hails from Rio Rancho, NM and has been playing fantasy sports for just over 15 years. Not only does he write the Bengals fantasy section, but he also does the Jacksonville Jaguars fantasy section. Crossing over, Morris writes the fantasy sections for the Boston Celtics, Indiana Pacers and Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA. Just send him an email and he will reply back the same day with your answer.
The word for the 2011 fantasy football season is: injury. This week we saw more fantasy starters fall to injury as Michael Vick bruised his non-throwing hand and Kenny Britt tore both his ACL and MCL ligaments. Then, as if that wasn't bad enough, Colts owner Jim Irsay said Monday morning that Peyton Manning will miss the entire season.
Those who own Vick may consider picking up a Rex Grossman or Mark Sanchez to hopefully fill the void if he misses any time; Britt owners need to run to the waiver wire and add Torrey Smith from Baltimore, or Nate Washington if someone already took Smith; and finally, the 49 percent of you that still own Manning can go ahead and move on from the dream that he will play this season.
Mark Sanchez: Sanchez isn't a sexy fantasy QB, but this weekend he turned in top five numbers when he lit up the Raiders for 369 yards passing, 3 TDs and an INT. This was more of the Raiders defense being bad more than Sanchez being good, but the Jets can't seem to run for 100 yards as a team, so Sanchez will have to get it done via the air if they want to put points on the board. If you own Vick, Sanchez is a decent short-term option for you.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: Has anyone noticed that the Patriots are looking up at the Bills in the AFC East? My friend Kenyatta has as he has been blowing up Twitter and Facebook with it all day long! Fitzpatrick turned in a stellar performance this weekend as he filled up the boxscore with 369 passing yards, 2 TDs and 2 INTs. Fitzy has been picked up in just about all formats at this point, but if he is available, he shouldn't be!
LaDainian Tomlinson: LT is back! Well, not really. But, this weekend he did manage to resurrect his career for a single game by hauling in five receptions for 116 yards and a TD; the 38 yards rushing was just icing on the cake. He won't do this again, so enjoy it while you can.
Daniel Thomas: Thomas has officially arrived in the NFL and Reggie Bush is back to fantasy waiver wire fodder. Daniels was able to rush for 95 yards and snatch three passes for 27 yards and a score. If he is available on your waiver wire, go grab him!
Torrey Smith: And the hot waiver wire pick this week is Smith in a landslide. In his first start, the rookie reeled in five passes for 152 yards and a trio of touchdowns. While it is just one game, he appears to be a lethal threat downfield and should be added in all formats.
Victor Cruz: Cruz drew a start in place of Mario Manningham and made the most of it by putting up 110 yards and 2 TDs. The thing with Cruz is that Manningham should be back next week and that puts him in the WR3 slot for the Giants, and Eli isn't as good as Peyton at making WR3s look like WR2s in fantasy leagues. Leave him on the waiver wire unless you are in a deep league.
James Casey: Casey qualifies at both RB and TE in most formats, so he gets the win as a TE this week for hauling in five passes for 126 yards and a score. He isn't someone I am going to say to add since he had just 162 receiving yards in his career before this weekend. Keep an eye on him, but don't expect much unless Owen Daniels goes down.
Indianapolis Colts Defense: In a weird twist of fate, the Colts defense finally did better than the offense. Even though Ben Roethlisberger got off on the Colts (364 yards and a TD), the defense still managed to rack up 3 sacks, 2 fumbles recovered, an INT and a defensive TD. Welcome to life without Manning!
Michael Vick: And this is the reason why I told you in the preseason to avoid drafting Vick. He will never play a full 16-game schedule because he takes too many chances while trying to make a play. Not to mention that he was taken as the No. 1 QB in most formats and is the No. 22-ranked fantasy QB so far this season, right behind FAs Jason Campbell and Kyle Orton. This weekend he finished with just 176 yards passing, 31 yards rushing and an INT.
Josh Freeman: Can someone please explain to me why Freeman was ranked No. 11 in Yahoo's Week 3 projections for QBs? Did they not see that I had him on the Sit 'em list? All he did was prove me right by going out and putting up 180 passing yards and 35 rushing yards. Had it not been for a QB-sneak rushing TD, he would have been even worse than the No. 21 he was ranked.
Rashard Mendenhall: When your QB completely goes off and has a season-best game, it usually means the RB suffers. And, that is exactly what happened this weekend as Mendenhall managed to scamper for just 37 yards on the ground with no endzone visits.
Deion Branch: The only thing worse than a player not playing is a player running out on the field and not even touching the ball once. That's right, Branch didn't get the memo that he was red hot entering the game (15 catches for 222 yards) and was held without a catch on his three targets. He played 69 of 75 offensive snaps, which means it was a little bit of a fluke and a little bit of me just missing on the pick.
DeSean Jackson: When your QB makes the losers list, you can double-down on his WRs making the list too. D-Jax was only able to haul in two catches for 30 yards and no scores. Jackson is going to be a shaky play if either Mike Kafka or Vince Young are under center.
Kellen Winslow: I don't have a clue why people draft Winslow season after season, thinking he is finally going to match his 2007 numbers. The truth is the Bucs offense isn't clicking and Winslow/Mike Williams are suffering because of it. Don't cut him, but don't trust him either.
San Diego Chargers Defense: The Chargers entered this week as defensive favorites against a Jamaal Charles-less Chiefs offense. But, that didn't work out as planned as the Chiefs still put 17 points on the board and the Chargers were only able to register a single sack and INT on the day.