Week 14 Wrap-Up: Reggie Bush is back

With the playoffs in action in many of the fantasy leagues out there, let’s just jump into the action that took place this weekend, starting with the Saints and their resurgent ground game…

  • New Orleans 29, Atlanta 25: This is supposed to be the year that the Falcons win the division (after ending up in last place last season), but with a loss to the Saints, they now find themselves in third place and will be two games behind whoever wins tonight’s game between the Panthers and Buccaneers. For Atlanta, Roddy White put up another big effort with 10 receptions for 164 yards, but it wasn’t enough to counter the Saints dominant passing rushing game (?) Pierre Thomas broke the century mark and scored two touchdowns, while Reggie Bush (106 combined yards, TD) seems to be back in action, which can only mean good things for the Saints.
  • Philadelphia 20, New York Giants 14: As a Patriots fan, I enjoy a Giants (or either of the Manning brothers) loss any day…especially when it’s pretty much been decided that they are the creme of the crop in the NFC. Maybe that idiotic Plaxico Burress leg shooting has finally distracted the team a bit, as they really couldn’t get any aspect of their offense going. For the Eagles, Brian Westbrook pretty much carried the team on his shoulders, racking up a whopping 203 yards and scoring two touchdowns.
  • Chicago 23, Jacksonville 10: While he’s been stellar this season, Bears rookie running back Matt Forte (106 combined yards) did not quite live up to his Yahoo! projection as the second best running back this week…which may have cost me in my most important league! For the Jags, Maurice Jones-Drew had a decent afternoon (102 combined yards, TD), thanks to his efforts in the receiving game.
  • Minnesota 20, Detroit 16: As hard as they tried, the Vikings couldn’t give the Lions their first win of the season and the countdown is now at three games until the dreaded 0-16 for Detroit. As with Matt Forte, Vikings running star running back Adrian Peterson (117 combined yards) also didn’t live up to his top ranking among tailbacks this week (and as my other RB in the league that I have Forte, some of the blame for my potential loss will be on his shoulders as well!) Lions receiver Calvin Johnson continued to do a lot with very little (in terms of quarterback play and the number of receptions he has) as he turned just three catches into 84 yards and a touchdown, most of which came on a 70 yard bomb.
  • Houston 24, Green Bay 21: Texans quarterback Matt Schaub was apparently on a mission in this one as he went off on the Packers defense to the tune of 414 yards passing (along with two touchdowns), finding receiver Kevin Walter six times for 146 yards and a score. Green Bay continued their disappointing season, even with a solid effort from running back Ryan Grant (104 rushing yards, TD.) Rookie tailback Steve Slaton (160 combined yards) had another great effort for the Texans en route to the victory.
  • Indianapolis 35, Cincinnati 3: After a terrible game in Cleveland last week, Manning returned vintage form in this one, torching the Bengals for 277 yards and three touchdowns. The Bengals must be psyched that they somehow squeaked out a victory over the Jaguars in week nine, because another win for this team is going to be hard to come by. Even with the win though, fantasy owners of running Joseph Addai (40 combined yards) can not be happy with production from their top pick!
  • Tennessee 28, Cleveland 9: Apparently the Cleveland Phil Dawson’s can not handle the best the AFC has to offer on his own. The Titans, who have returned to their winning ways by doing what they do best, ran the ball (Chris Johnson – 136 yards, TD; LenDale White – 99 yards, TD) down the Brownies throats in what was a pretty forgettable game.
  • Miami 16, Buffalo 3: If this was an audition for the Bills to move to Toronto, I’d consider it a miserable failure. The Bills are completing their second half of the season collapse in superb fashion, with no one on the team putting up fantasy stats I’d want anywhere near my roster. In all honesty, I guess I really wouldn’t want any of the stats that the Dolphins had to offer, but I have to give them props on the win and for causing a three team log-jam at the top of the AFC East (much to the displeasure of the Patriots.)
  • New England 24, Seattle 21: If the Patriots managed to lose this game, their playoff chances were pretty much over. Thankfully, after allowing Seahawks quarterback Senaca Wallace (212 yards, 3 TD) and ex-Patriot receiver Deion Branch (88 yards, 2 TD0 to put on a clinic early in the game, they turned it around and pulled off a victory on the shoulders of Wes Welker (12 receptions for 134 yards), who is just four catches from hitting the 100 reception mark.
  • Denver 24, Kansas City 17: Finally my boy Brandon Marshall (11 catches for 96 yards, 2 TD)has a big game and it couldn’t have come at a better time, as the Broncos get everything the Chiefs have to offer every time these two play. The Broncos clinched the division with this victory at a spectacular 8-5…showing how far the San Diego Chargers have fallen this year.
  • San Francisco 24, New York Jets 14: Consider me a 49ers fan for a week after this victory over the New York Over-rated Jets. If Brett Favre (137 yards, INT…but he did have a rushing TD) can’t get it done against San Francisco, this team could have troubles if they manage to make it into the playoffs. For the Niners, quarterback Shaun Hill (285 yards, 2 TD, INT) continues to put up solid numbers and rewarded anyone who took the gamble on him in their league.
  • Arizona 24, St. Louis 10: So much for the Cardinals using their matchup with the Rams to work on their ground game. My pick of Tim Hightower as a “hit” was off the mark a bit, even though he did find the endzone. If you’re looking for a defense to plug-n-play throughout your playoffs, consider any team playing the Rams.
  • Pittsburgh 20, Dallas 13: How in the world did the Cowboys give this game away to the Steelers?! Pittsburgh did all they could to keep Dallas in the game, but at the end they just couldn’t get it done. In terms of fantasy numbers, let’s just say that you probably weren’t happy with the production of any of your players if you had one from this game.
  • Baltimore 24, Washington 10: Washington has now lost their way into last place in the division and it looks like the odds of them making the playoffs are pretty bad at this time. They successfully ran Clinton Portis (46 combined yards, fumble lost) into the ground this season and it’s going to cost them down the stretch.
  • San Diego 34, Oakland 7 (Thursday): Although the Chargers put a pretty good beating on the Raiders, owners of LaDainian Tomlinson (91 yards, TD) are at least a little disappointed at the production of their top overall pick, as the team gave backup Darren Sproles (64 combined yards, 2 TD) a couple touchdowns that would have most likely been LT’s in previous seasons. In my league he is the 14th ranked running back and it’ll be interesting to see where he will rank going into next season’s draft. As for the rest of the action in the game, Philip Rivers (214 yards, 3 TD) and receiver Vincent Jackson (148 yards, TD) had solid performances that paid off huge for team managers that happened to start them this week.
  • Tampa Bay 24, Carolina 17 (Projected): LET’S GO STEVE SMITH!!!