Week 10 Sleepers Reactions

BYE: Cleveland, Kansas City, New England, New York Jets

Redskins vs Vikings: Jordan Reed; Reed finished with 6 catches for 62 yards and a TD, and also had his hands on a potential game-winning TD, in what turned out to be a VERY good game for TEs despite the Thursday night match-up; the Vikings’ John Carlson finished with 7 catches for 98 yards and a TD, and could be a TE2 flier if the Vikings continue consistently working the position into the pass game and with Kyle Rudolph out at least another two weeks with a fractured left foot. Both defenses allowed RGIII and Christian Ponder to have their way for most of the night, and continue to represent great match-ups for opposing players. Alfred Morris continues to get vulture at the goal-line, and Cordarrelle Patterson is in the same boat as St. Louis’ Tavon Austin, and won’t be used properly by Minnesota until next year.

Bills vs Steelers: Ben Roethlisberger; Big Ben sadly relinquished a great passing matchup and played the role of game manager, allowing defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau to use his 15-2 record against rookie quarterbacks to lead Pittsburgh to victory. Jericho Cotchery continues to stay relevant, much to the dismay of all other Steelers owners. Both C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson are slowly becoming risky RB starts and FLEX (with upside) plays given their inconsistent usage and play.

Bengals vs Ravens: Marvin Jones; So much for Jones (1 catch for 2 yards), and with Andy Dalton back to being the streaky, inconsistent QB we’re accustomed to, you’re not trusting any of the Bengals options until Week 13 @SD (or next week against CLE if you like the “WR not covered by Joe Haden” theory). Tyler Eifert (3 catches for 55 yards) is worth keeping an eye on if Jermaine Gresham misses extended time with a groin injury. Ray Rice has one final chance at fantasy salvation against the Bears next week, and Torrey Smith (5 catches for 46 yards and a TD) is quietly on pace for a career year, and will look to attack an already terrible Chicago secondary that just lost Charles Tillman to short-term IR.

Lions vs Bears: Kris Durham; It’s too bad it was only a 5-yard TD, but on a day where Matthew Stafford targeted Calvin Johnson on nearly 50% of his passes, you’re happy Durham even got the lone target. Brandon Pettigrew caught 5 passes for 70 yards, but isn’t a red zone target and nothing more than a low-end TE2. Joique Bell is worth stashing if Detroit claims the NFC North and begins to reduce Reggie Bush’s workload. Jay Cutler never should have been in the game given how effective Josh McCown was against the Packers, and with the Bears defense losing another defensive leader in Tillman, Chicago’s playoffs hopes were further diminished following a pivotal division loss. Alshon Jeffrey is becoming a legit high-upside WR2.

Eagles vs Packers: Riley Cooper; The connection continues as Cooper finished with 3 catches for 102 yards and 2 TDs (although one score was on a woefully underthrown pass into double coverage). Despite the fluky nature of THIS game and incredible efficiency from both Nick Foles and Cooper, he’s difficult to deny as a WR3 with a cake remaining schedule (Was, Arz, Det, @Min, Chi, @Dal). A wait-and-see approach is necessary with third-string QB Scott Tolzien, but I’m inclined to believe the Packers are in the same boat as the Bears. Jarrett Boykin (8 catches for 112 yards on 13 targets) is back to being fantasy relevant as a low-end WR3.

Rams vs Colts: Trent Richardson; Take the bone back! Hardly a vote of confidence for a slightly more effective Donald Brown (5 catches for 64 yards and a TD), Trent Richardson’s production continues to be marred by erratic play from the Colts, who now fully understand how the Seahawks felt facing the Rams’ ferocious pass rush (also a match-up play). I’m not excusing Richardon’s disappointing fantasy year, but until Indianapolis fixes their offensive line, the verdict is still out on Richardson. Tavon Austin’s day was like Riley Cooper’s, only without the upside and consistent usage (Austin only played 15 offensive snaps) going forward, even against Chicago’s porous and depleted defense. T.Y. Hilton continues to play like a low-end WR1 with Andrew Luck beginning to throw like it’s 2012, albeit with a very tough remaining schedule (@Ten, @Arz, Ten, @Cin, Hou, @KC, Jac).

Jaguars vs Titans: Shonn Greene; Likely the Jaguars only victory this season after having spent two weeks game-planning for the Titans, you’re not overreacting to any of the results from this game.

Raiders vs Giants: Denarius Moore; You’re absolutely reacting accordingly to everything from this game. Terrelle Pryor’s ineffectiveness as a passer is being exposed, Eli Manning is, well, being Eli, and both QBs are bringing down the rest of their respective offenses. Andre Brown is the only player to emerge from the dearth as a legitimate RB2 (health pending) ROS.

Seahawks vs Falcons: Doug Baldwin; Baldwin’s last game before Percy Harvin’s long-awaited arrival was a better real life display (5 catches for 76 yards) than a fantasy one. Atlanta is terrible, and while he’s still worth a stash, I doubt Roddy White is really going to be the solution to their (or your fantasy team’s) problems. You’re looking out for signs of life in the next couple of weeks, but a real breakout isn’t likely until Week 13 @Buf at the earliest.

Panthers vs 49ers: Mike Tolbert; At the end of the day, did you really think the game would be won any other way than straight-up defense? A tough fantasy day beyond the D/STs.

Broncos vs Chargers: Ryan Mathews; Despite the production (14 carries for 59 yards and 1 TD), Mathews’ use became more of an annoyance as San Diego inexplicably stuck to the run on first down while being behind by two scores going into the 4th quarter. Even though he won’t be sidelined against Kansas City next week, Broncos owners are on high-alert with Peyton Manning’s injury, especially as they approach a tougher second half of football. If you’re overreacting to Keenan Allen’s 4 catches for 41 yards following his streak of great games, don’t; he’s still a rookie WR2 with upside playing on a predominantly dink-and-dunk offense.

Texans vs Cardinals: Cardinals D/ST; Case Keenum’s misleading stats aside, the Cardinals D/ST could have added to their great day with a pick-six, but kept Case Keenum off-balance for most of the day. If you picked them up as a bye-week fill-in for the Chiefs, you might consider keeping them in with a matchup against Jacksonville next week. If you’re an Andre Johnson owner, you love Keenum’s ability to throw downfield, something Matt Schaub was tentative to do beyond play-action. And with the Texans backfield even more questionable with Arian Foster done for the year, Keenum will continue to chuck it.

Cowboys vs Saints: Cole Beasley; Rob Ryan made sure the Cowboys regretted firing him at the end of last season, Drew Brees made sure the Cowboys regretted hiring Monte Kiffin as their defensive coordinator, and somewhere, Jerry Jones believes Leon Lett would’ve contained a Saints running game that saw all three RBs score double-digit fantasy points.

Dolphins vs Buccaneers: Mike James; After a strong start, James’ night ended with a fractured ankle in the first quarter. Vincent Jackson is a buy-low candidate heading into weeks against poor secondaries in Atl and @Det, where he’s sure to see an increase in targets with Brian Leonard assuming primary backfield duties. Breaking news: The Dolphins are a mess.

Always remember: Start your studs, play the match-ups, and don’t be afraid to make the trade!