Stud of the Week: Matthew Stafford at New Orleans Saints
It’s the Saints, and although they have held two passers under 15 points in two of the last three weeks, I’m not ready to trust them against Stafford.
Matt Ryan at Jacksonville Jaguars
It’s hard to trust Ryan right now, especially in the playoffs, but if you just lost Andy Dalton, Ryan against the Jaguars is a viable fill-in. The Jaguars are giving up the second most points to opposing quarterbacks this season.
Alex Smith at Baltimore Ravens
Smith is the 12th highest scorer in fantasy football this season and it’s easy to see why. He is comfortable in the system and has a number of viable targets. Baltimore just gave up five touchdown passes to the Seahawks last week.
Dud of the Week: Ben Roethlisberger vs. Denver Broncos
This is a tough one for me. On one side, you have the hottest offense in the league and on the other, you have the top defense in the league. The Broncos will be on a mission this week and I think they slow down Big Ben in the process.
Blake Bortles vs. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons are great against the pass and awful against the run.
Eli Manning vs. Carolina Panthers
The MVP of the league is not Cam Newton. It is clearly the Carolina Panthers defense who have gotten better as the season has progressed.
Stud of the Week: Denard Robinson vs. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons get torched on the ground and Robinson is a dynamic player. With T.J. Yeldon likely sidelined, I would lean on Robinson this week.
With a new starting QB, the Bengals are bound to lean heavily on the run and short passes, both of which benefit the Bengal running backs.
Dud of the Week: Charcandrick West at Baltimore Ravens
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a handful of times, NFL teams exploit opposing teams’ weaknesses. The Ravens are good against the run and awful against the pass.
Brandon Bolden vs. Tennessee Titans
The Titans are good against opposing running backs. Couple that with the presence of James White, who has a consistent role for the Patriots, spells a tough first start for Bolden.
Bryce Brown vs. Cleveland Browns
The Browns are a great matchup, but I expect Brown to struggle. Couple that with the uncertainty of how the running back snaps will be distributed between him, Christine Michael, Derrick Coleman and Fred Jackson and I can’t advise leaning on Brown in the playoffs.
Stud of the Week: Doug Baldwin vs. Cleveland Browns
Baldwin has eight touchdown catches over the past three games. The Browns just placed star corner Joe Haden on IR. Enter Doug Baldwin.
Jeremy Maclin at Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens are giving up the most points to opposing wide outs in the league. Maclin has his biggest games against poor pass defenses.
Demaryius Thomas at Pittsburgh Steelers
Thomas has been fighting off drops and injury all season. If the Broncos are going to win in Pittsburgh, Thomas will have a lot to say about it.
Dud of the Week: Martavis Bryant vs. Denver Broncos
If Bryant draws Aqib Talib as he should, he could be in for a long day as Talib is a terrible matchup for him.
Brandon Marshall at Dallas Cowboys
The only reason the Cowboys have been in most games this season is because of the performance of their defense. With Marshall being the Jets biggest threat, I expect the Cowboys to do everything they can to take him out of the game.
Jarvis Landry at San Diego Chargers
The silver lining of the Chargers season is their pass rush and pass defense have both been solid. Landry is in for a long day being shadowed by Jason Verrett.
Stud of the Week: Richard Rodgers at Oakland Raiders
Rodgers has quickly become a favorite target of his namesake quarterback. Couple that with the Raiders inability to defense opposing tight ends equals lots of opportunity.
Heath Miller vs. Denver Broncos
The one position the Bronco defense struggles covering is opposing tight ends. They have given up six touchdowns to tight ends against only two to wide receivers.
Gary Barnidge at Seattle Seahawks
Much like the Broncos, the Seahawks biggest weakness is opposing tight ends and for Barnidge it doesn’t matter who he’s playing against or who’s throwing the ball to him.
Dud of the Week: Travis Kelce at Baltimore Ravens
The strength of the Ravens pass defense is their play against tight ends. With linebackers Daryl Smith and C.J. Mosley, they’ve allowed only two touchdowns and held tight ends below 50 yards eight times this season.
Jason Witten vs. New York Jets
Witten has disappeared without Tony Romo at quarterback, something that’s not bound to change against the Jets who have held opposing tight ends below nine points collectively since Week 7 at New England.
Julius Thomas vs. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons have given up a few huge days to opposing tight ends, but this won’t be one of them. Thomas will be unable to take advantage of Atlanta and will have minimal impact on the outcome of the game.
Stud of the Week: New York Jets at Dallas Cowboys
This is a great matchup for the Jets. With Revis returning, it’s hard to imagine the Cowboys doing much of anything in this game.
New England Patriots vs. Tennessee Titans
The Titans run game leaves a lot to be desired and against New England and the Hoodie. You can bet that Marcus Mariota will be introduced to something new this week.
Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens
Any defense playing the Ravens is startable for the rest of the season.
Dud of the Week: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Arizona Cardinals
Chip Kelly’s Eagles have bounced back after a terrible stretch but against Carson Palmer, I wouldn’t trust this defense for another big day.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Denver Broncos
Brock Osweiler and the Broncos are going to come out and put this Osweiler/Manning debate to bed once and for all this week. It can go either way with Osweiler playing lights out and taking hold of the starting job, or playing poorly and ceding way for Manning to return. I do believe it’s the former and the numbers are on my side.
Carolina Panthers at New York Giants
The Panthers defense has gotten better as the season has progressed, but the Giants have a ton of weapons and can score points. This will be OBJ vs. Josh Norman Part I.
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