Welcome to week three and the first of nine straight bye weeks. We wade into things with only Green Bay and Carolina off, but the impact will certainly be felt. Brandon LaFell owners are going to have to wait a week to see if he can do it again, while the trio of Packers, Randall Cobb, Jordy Nelson and James Jones will certainly be missed. Do we have a changing of the guard at wide receiver in the NFL? Certainly some new names like Josh Gordon and Cecil Shorts appear poised to assume prominent fantasy roles. This week's Thursday night action features an NFC West matchup of St.Louis and San Francisco on the NFL Network.
Congratulations are in order to some of you, to others.... better luck next year. To those in leagues still running, in either regular or post season, we bring you our last regular season look at fantasy football targets. I am torn with the question of how much to spend on receivers in my draft or auction. While watching Calvin Johnson, A.J. Green, Brandon Marshall and the other studs, part of me wants to allocate enough funds to get a pair of my own in 2013. The other part of me recognizes that James Jones was a major part of my first place finish this season,. Last month I even dropped Jones when he disappeared, only to pick him up again the following week.
A seemingly never ending week of football started at Ford Field on Thanksgiving Day and wrapped up Monday night at the Linc in Philadelphia. As we wind down and enter the fourth quarter of the season, the cream is certainly rising to the top. Many leagues are approaching the playoffs and the alwayys tricky managing of lineups as some teams look at young talent with their season's basically over, while others rest stars to keep them healthy for the post season.
Amazing that we are already approaching the midway point of the 2012 season. Did you survive the biggest bye week of the season? Julio Jones, Roddy White, Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker, Dwayne Bowe, DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin and Malcom Floyd among those on the sideline during week seven. This week, Torrey Smith, A.J. Green and Andre and Steve Johnson get a break. If you're like me, you are still getting used to a Thursday night game every week with Tampa Bay and Minnesota kicking off week eight.
How did Kevin Ogletree work out for you? How about Stephen Hill? As one of the many fine writers here at the Alarm franchise pointed out recently, ride the studs! It's well known that rookie wide receivers often struggle. Players like Julio Jones and A.J. Green are freaks of nature, they are not the norm. Atlanta and Cincinnati, as well as the many fantasy owners that had Jones and Green as rookies, were well rewarded in 2011. Will Alshon Jeffery be a solid NFL receiver? probably so, but maybe not the extent of his SEC brethren, certainly not as quickly and more importantly, not as consistently.
As the season winds to a close, elite receivers league wide are getting even more “looks”, week by week. As we have mentioned in past weeks, the reliability of the top wide outs far exceeds running back by committee options at the “flex” position. While it is nice to have one of the top quarterbacks throwing to “your” receiver, the numbers show, even pedestrian signal callers can create some huge numbers for their targets.
Without a doubt, receivers are having a bigger impact than ever in fantasy football. With rules favoring the passing game, some of the biggest numbers are coming from wide outs. With so many running backs being handled by committee, it’s almost a necessity to fill your flex position with a receiver. Good luck to those in the playoffs and those making a final push.