This week’s dynasty dashboard will be split two parts (unlike Jerick McKinnon and his workload). I had the opportunity to write as I watched the games and gather my thoughts real-time, which is unheard of in a house with 3 kids. The kids may or may have not torn the basement to shreds in the process, but it was all worth it. Jerick McKinnon represents all that was good from Week 6, and C.J. Spiller has his owners scrambling for another year of unfortunate circumstances. If the outlook of your dynasty teams looks anything like my basement right now, read on so you can determine where value buys lie.
Indianapolis Colts 33 – 28 Houston Texans
Andrew Luck is on pace to throw a millions touchdowns. Well, not quite, but you get the gist. T.Y. Hilton was one of my favorite offseason undervalued players. He hasn’t been getting into the end zone with consistency and you don’t want to depend on him as your WR1, but as long as he’s in Indianapolis he’s going to receive the Randall Cobb/ Green Bay type treatment in this offense.
5 weeks of football gave the Colts enough tape to ultimately decide they were going to blank DeAndre Hopkins and let someone else beat them. While Andre Johnson was rejuvenating himself, this is a good time to try and steal Hopkins from his owner if you’re in a rebuild and need an asset that’s still undervalued.
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New England Patriots 37 – 28 Buffalo Bills (Who is C.J. Spiller, anyone know?)
Stevan Ridley went down and it appears that he’s facing a torn ACL, which is a big blow to his dynasty value and the Patriots’ run game. As a free agent after the year, it’s going to be tough for him to earn a larger dollar commitment and then rehab to get back on the field next year, in another uniform. We had our first Brian Tyms sighting as he got behind the secondary for a very nice touchdown in traffic. Here’s your newest waiver wire darling if he isn’t rostered in deep dynasty league. With his opportunity it’s safe to say that Aaron Dobson likely isn’t to get a shot in a Patriots uniform.
C.J. Spiller is just not being used right – he’s not a between the tackles runner! It’s safe to say that he won’t be in a Bills uniform in 2015, and while he’s older he can become a nice buy at a discount now as he’s likely to be signed by someone that knows how to use him next year – like Bill Belichick. Darrelle Revis put a whipping’ on Sammy Watkins as we expected, but Watkins was close to sneaking into the end zone. Why the Bills are using Anthony Dixon and not using Bryce Brown – this team is just a wreck. It’s a positive sign, however, that Robert Woods can be a serviceable flex option when given the chance with a better quarterback.
Carolina Panthers 37 – 37 Cincinnati Bengals
We’re starting to see Cam Newton get more comfortable within himself as he was forced to move outside of the pocket more. He’s a great buy option if you need a Quarterback upgrade, but you better do it quickly before he plays a soft schedule upcoming. All Kelvin Benjamin does is score touchdowns. Much like we were dying to know who the Tennessee Titans were going to draft at running back this year, we’ll be watching over the Panthers’ backfield with just as much attention this year as the lead back in this game was Fozzy Whittaker. Cool.
Mohamed Sanu stepped up in a major way in A.J. Green’s absence and he should maintain short-term value. Giovani Bernard and Jeremy Hill should have been given the rock more in this game to keep the Panthers off the field. In any event, Hill isn’t just a straight line runner and earned the additional touches he received. Who knows, maybe the Green owner is willing to part ways if he’s a contender and you have the pieces in place to pry him away. It’s always your duty to inquire within when buy-low opportunities present themselves. We’re also starting to get closer to Week 10, which is the earliest we may see Tyler Eifert in any action. Throw out an offer for him as well. If you’re out of it at this point, and you own Larry Donnell, or even Martellus Bennett – you know what you’re supposed to do.
Pittsburg Steelers 10 – 31 Cleveland Browns
The Steelers continue to mind-boggle as they get to the red zone and turn away from Le’Veon Bell, because clearly that makes sense. Justin Brown continues to run routes without gaining enough separation to earn Roethlisberger’s attention. He’s a big target, so it might behoove Roethlisberger to gain some trust in him as Markus Wheaton continues to disappoint when given the chance. It appears that Wheaton is nothing more than a gadget player that would excel more in a system where he’s only asked to support in more of a manufactured sense.
Terrance West was a surprise inactive as the Brown decided to make room for another able body on special teams. That’s enough to show who the lead back is going to be in Cleveland long term. Ben Tate played well again and earned 78 yards on 25 attempts, but Isaiah Crowell did the same with only 11 carries. Crowell owners rejoice. Jordan Cameron appeared healthy enough as he put up a century along with a touchdown. Johnny Manziel is going to love throwing him the ball. Wait – who the heck is Johnny Manziel? :sigh:
Green Bay Packers 27 – 24 Miami Dolphins
Davante Adams was an early beneficiary as the Packers decided to make Jarrett Boykin inactive, and Adams earned 2 of Rodgers’ first targets. I don’t need to beat a dead horse, you know how we feel about Davante Adams around here. Eddie Lacy returned to this Mud-Volleyball running ways and put up only 40 yards on 14 attempts. He just isn’t very good. James Starks continues to look like the better running back in Green Bay, yet coaching continues to give the rock to Lacy because he was the early draft pick. What’s wrong with this picture? I’d be pretty content if I owned James Starks right now, because you never know.
Knowshon Moreno made an early return from his injury and looked fairly tentative. It was Lamar Miller that was given the opportunity to keep the 1A job, and he delivered. I’m sure Joe Philbin will figure out how to further ignore Miller’s performance and get Moreno even more involved as early as next week. Jarvis Landry was a pleasant surprise as he led the Dolphin’s receivers in catches and yards In addition to hitting pay dirt. He’s doing what Wallace isn’t able to do well, so I wouldn’t mind owning Landry going forward.
Detroit Lions 17 – 3 Minnesota Vikings (Jerick McKinnon for all the championships)
Remember this offseason when the Lions said they were going to use Theo Riddick in a Darren Sproles type role? Riddick was the reception leader this week, but I’m not expecting that to continue. Regardless, he’s worth a stash in deep league to see what transpires. I would have thought that Eric Ebron would have been more involved in a game without Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush, but it looks like we’re going to have to sit and wait.
Jerrick McKinnon earned the start! Jerrick McKinnon earned the start! The British are coming! McKinnon didn’t get much room to run, but it was great to see him so involved in the passing game as well. Good luck trying to penetrate that owner’s McKinnon force-field at this point; congratulations to any owner that was successful in their Matt Asiata off-load attempts. Cordarrelle Patterson needed 6 targets to pull down his first catch. Meanwhile, Charles Johnson was able to get on the field and pull down a couple balls. This is the most football action he’s earned – ever. With Patterson not living up to expectations and Jarius Wright being more of a niche player, I’m going back to the well with Johnson and getting him back on my teams, because you never know.
Denver Broncos 31 – 17 New York Jets
Nobody knew how this Denver backfield was truly going to shake out, but Hillman was able to achieve 4.17 Y/C against the stout Jets’ defense. While that is somewhat misleading as he faced softer boxes, that’s a great sign for him going forward. Montee Ball does not have this backfield to himself when he returns. C.J. Andersen once again saw the field as much as me. I can’t speak to why that is other than the Broncos clearly don’t see him as the guy.
Jace Amaro scored big for anyone that played him this week, although he clearly needs to work on catching the football, because as a pass-catching tight end, you’re not supposed to drop them. This game was a good sign, however, for Geno Smith and his owners as the dreaded change to Mike Vick did not happen. You’d struggle throwing the ball to this crew as well.
Baltimore Ravens 48 – 17 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Joe Flacco is elite. [sarcasm font] You have to wonder if Lovie Smith will be on the hot seat after this season, but most of that roster is filled with the previous regime’s guys, so he’ll likely get another year to turn things around. Torrey Smith decided to grace us with his presence again; it’s pretty tough to figure out when the right week to play him is. This is probably a good week to see if you can turn him into a first round pick. I’d say it’s a wash, but I’d be willing to move on and take my chances elsewhere. Lorenzo Taliaferro is an after-thought for the near term future. He’s back to your bench at this point and will hopefully be a 2015 prospect. I’d still buy.
Doug Martin earned 45 yards on 11 carries, and Bobby Rainey earned 42 yards on 7 carries. But let’s keep giving the ball to the lesser of the two backs. Mike Evans surprised everyone with an early return from injury and did so by scoring a touchdown on 4 catches for 55 yards. Austin Seferian-Jenkins also pitched in with 4 catches. Both these guys are still players I’m willing to over pay for to put them on my roster.