Hits & Misses – Week 6: Brady Back in Business

Here are our “Hits” and “Misses” for week six, listing players you want to make sure are in your lineup, as well as those you might consider shelving for the week (or at least lowering your expectations!) Normally I would leave off the most obvious picks, such as Tom Brady against the Titans. However, the Patriots passing game hasn’t lived up to it’s billing so far this year and there are managers who are probably considering benching this week, so I’ve included him as a reminder to get him in your line-ups! Anyways, here we go with the hits and misses for the week…

Update (10/16): Philip Rivers has been replaced on the Miss list with Kyle Orton.

Quarterback
Hits
Misses
Tom Brady, Patriots vs TEN – While the Patriots signal caller has disappointed fantasy managers who drafted him early this year, I have a feeling he’s going to kick things up a notch these next two weeks against the Titans and Buccaneers, two of the worst pass defenses in the NFL. Get him in your line-up if you were considering someone else. Eli Manning, Giants @ NO – It was tough putting Eli on here, as he’s been great so far this season. However, the Saints defense has been pretty solid this year and they’re coming off a BYE where they were able to recharge and study tape of the Giants passing game. Eli is still suffering through the foot injury that caused him to leave last week’s game at halftime (plus the team was killing the Raiders, so it made the decision easy.) It all depends on who your alternate is on whether you bench him or not though.
Matt Hasselbeck, Seahawks vs ARI – Hasselbeck returned from his rib injury (seems to still be lingering, but it’s nothing a few pain killer injections can’t fix) last week he dominated the Jaguars, throwing for four touchdowns! This week he plays a Cardinals defense that is allowing around 300 yards and three touchdowns per game through the air. Kyle Orton, Broncos @ SD – I previously had Philip Rivers as a miss, but after some additional thought/research, I’ve decided to remove him and replace him with the quarterback opposing him this weekend. Reasons for the change include: A) the Chargers have been solid against the pass this year, B) the game is in San Diego, C) Rivers has already lit up good defenses this year, including Baltimore and Pittsburgh.
Jason Campbell, Redskins vs KC – This just feels like one of those games where Campbell throws for 250 yards and a few touchdowns. He makes a solid BYE week plug-in. Mark Sanchez, Jets vs BUF – After a few rough outings, you probably weren’t considering Sanchez anyway, but just in case…put him on your bench.
Running Back
Hits
Misses
Knowshon Moreno, Broncos @ SD – The Chargers are the worst team in the league against the run, giving up over 130 yards and a score per game on the ground. With Correll Buckhalter trying to make his return from an ankle injury, expect Moreno to get most of the workload. Brandon Jacobs, Giants @ NO – I’m just not feelin’ Jacobs this week against a solid Saints run defense. With Ahmad Bradshaw running so well lately, there should be a pretty even split with carries and that means not a lot of production out of the big man.
Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars vs STL – After last week’s embarrassment, the Jaguars should be playing like their jobs depend on it. Luckily for Jones-Drew, they play the Rams, who are bad against the run and he should be able to rack up some great running and receiving yardage in this one. LaDainian Tomlinson, Chargers vs DEN – There was a time when the Chargers backfield was overflowing with talent…good times, eh? LT is getting old and fragile and Darren Sproles is no Turner the Burner. Keep LT on your bench this week against the Broncos if you have a decent alternative.
Cedric Benson, Bengals vs HOU – Benson keeps proving the haters wrong and he has another good match-up this week against the Texans, who have given up eight rushing touchdowns this year already. Jamal Lewis, Browns @ PIT – Lewis angered a lot of Jerome Harrison owners out there a bit with last week’s return-from-the-grave performance. This week he won’t be so lucky as he goes against a Steelers defense that is tops in the league at stopping the run.
Wide Receiver
Hits
Misses
Randy Moss, Patriots vs TEN – I just read about how the Patriots would like to stretch the field this week against the Titans and Moss is the man for the job. The Titans pass defense has been so bad that I’m not sure even double covering Randy will be enough to hold him down this week. Vincent Jackson, Chargers vs DEN – Jackson is a good receiver and has a knack for proving me wrong when I dis him here, but the Broncos shut down Randy Moss and I expect they’ll do the same to Vincent.
Steve Smith, Panthers @ TB – This seems like a good time for Steve Smith to have one of his huge games…you know, like in previous seasons, where he’d rack up 120 yards and a couple touchdowns? That’s what I’m hoping for at least, since I have him starting in one of my leagues. Terrell Owens, Bills @ NYJ – About playing against Randy Moss, Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis stated, “I just covered him…If he went to the bathroom, I went, too. I covered him any way I could. When he went to the sidelines, when our offense was on the field and he sat down, I sat right across from him wherever he was sitting on the bench.” The same will happen with T.O.
Greg Jennings, Packers vs DET – It’s been a strange season for Greg Jennings so far, with only 11 receptions and a game in which he caught zero passes. Things should turn around this week at home in Lambeau, against the Lions. Devin Hester, Bears @ ATL – Hester is returning from a neck injury and plays a surprisingly good Falcons pass defense that hasn’t given up a touchdown to a wide receiver all season yet. With the unpredictability of the Chicago passing game, it might be best to bench Devin this week.
Tight End
Hits
Misses
Jermichael Finley, Packers vs DET – I’m going out on a limb here, but after watching Finley against the Vikings two weeks ago, I think he has some serious talent and can help stretch the field. Will he get another 128 yard and a touchdown performance? Maybe not. But he should still see plenty of looks from Aaron Rodgers. Heath Miller, Steelers vs CLE – Miller has been racking up the receptions with 29 in the first five games, but his real fantasy value comes when he finds the endzone (which he’s done three times in the past two weeks.) This week he plays the Browns, who are usually the laughing stock of fantasy defense discussions, but who have actually been decent against the tight end position this season (although they haven’t had any major challenges yet.) Call it a hunch, but I see one of his three catch, 27 yard performances on the horizon on Sunday.