Each week during the NFL season FST brings you our Fantasy Football Start’em column, which takes a look at favorable match-ups and how they might impact lineup decisions for your fantasy football roster. Let’s take a look at some players that you’ll want in your lineup for Week 10. If you have any start’em sit’em questions feel free to post them in our Fantasy Football Forum.
The muscle hamster is at it again. He’s found himself at the FST Start’em table twice now in 3 weeks. I’ll say this, he’s on complete fire and to think he’ll cool off anytime soon is pure foolishness. It’s nearly as much nonsense as how well Josh Freeman and the rest of the offensive unit has been playing of late. They’ve shown a really strong ability to battle against all opponents this season and just fight till the end, even if it’s to the disdain of Giants’ Coach Coughlin. Let it be known, Doug Martin is going to be around in the NFL for a good long while. Also, can we get a better nickname for this beast? Muscle Hamster isn’t quite the ferociousness I was thinking. How about Bowling Buccaneer or even Mash’em up Martin? Anything but hamster, OK.
Bill Belichek is the king of Fantasy disappointment. He just loves to get you all riled up and then pull the rug out by spreading the love around in the that dynamic Brady led offense. This week is the best chance to stay with an absolute affirmative voice that Stevan Ridley will bust through again and have a big game. Buffalo boosts one of the NFL’s worst defenses and with the Patriots at home, this game could get ugly early plus the ground game is sure to keep Buffalo guessing. I believe a shoot out is in order but I see many gashing runs for Ridley and expect his performance to emulate Brady’s as he belongs on the “Panty-Dropping” pick of the week to go over 100 yards rushing with at least 1 TD and 20 yards receiving.
This Mile-High commander of the Bronco’s offense takes to the road this week against young buck in Cam Newton. Fresh off another 4th quarter comeback, Peyton will look to put away the Panthers early and often with his precise passing. Eric Decker has been Peyton’s favorite targets with 4 scores in the last two games. Now the Broncos offense is starting to roll and consistently finding ways to put 30 points on the board. The Panthers are not a defense that is going to scare Peyton and expect it to be the old veteran in Manning to leave Newton pouting after another Panther’s loss this Sunday.
The little brother, Eli, is quietly seeking his 3rd Super Bowl ring this season. However, his last two games have been abysmal statistically and the Giants are struggling to find some continuity on offense. Insert the Bengals into week 10 and we have a recipe for getting well quickly and punishing your fantasy competition. If Eli can come close to replicating big brother Peyton from last weekend’s game in Cincinnati, then this game could get out of hand early. I know that the Giants don’t lose many back-to-back games and in an effort to redeem themselves from last week’s loss in wake of Hurricane Sandy’s wrath, expect the Giants to score points a plenty.
Hartline has had his first breakout season this year with Tannehill leading the offense in Miami. It’s been more love for Hartline than heart break as he’s had some down games but mostly solid efforts this season. The Titans are a vulnerable defense to getting beat early and often. Just ask the Detroit Lions or the Chicago Bears who carved them up to a tune of 50 plus points. Needless to say Hartline has the opportunity to cement himself squarely into the equation for the award to “Where did this guy come from?” this season. He’s not your typical Wes Welker or Jordy Nelson, instead he’s more like a white man’s Randy Moss, only slower and whiter. Expect big numbers from this South Beach hands man on Sunday.
Revenge is a dish best served against your former team. Vincent Jackson will have the opportunity for this revenge at his new friendly confines in the Tampa sunshine on Sunday as they take on the struggling San Diego Chargers. With the Bucs having built a formidable offense that is well balanced in rushing and passing, it is tough to see them being contained much this Sunday. I don’t particularly think there is much more incentive Jackson needs aside from seeing another team across the field, but when the yellow thunder bolt on the helmets is up in his face I expect that to propel him in the “Bullet-Proof Tiger” status that is his this week. It shouldn’t be under-stated, you have to play the emotion card and big play potential in games like this. If it was a game at Qualcomm in San Diego I might have leaned another direction, but this Bucs offense is hot so roll him out there with high expectations.
Gonzo has been suddenly quite for the Falcons offense of late. He’s made some key receptions towards the end of halves but otherwise Ryan and him haven’t been on the same page like they were earlier this season. This game will surely make up for it against the Saints, who don’t defend the pass or TE well at all. I think it will be a shootout and don’t expect the Saints to lay down at all. Brees will be firing away and so will Matty Ice. If those dirty birds plan on improving on their perfect record they will most likely look down the middle of the field to Gonzalez to get it done this week. This should be an intriguing matchup and fireworks to follow as these division rivals duke it out.
The Machine that is Vernon Davis should be on display against a mediocre Rams Defense. I’m not a HUGE believer in bounce back games, but Vernon has been pretty dormant of late and I expect that he’s let his voice be heard about getting more involved in the offense during the bye week. I like Davis to show his terminator attitude and qualities that make him the athletic beast that he is on Sunday. Even if the yardage is not there I expect he’ll see some red zone targets. Just hope that not all the love goes to Gore this time, since he’s got such a good track record against the Rams.
Steelers are playing against the Chiefs on Monday night. How bad are the Chiefs? Well you can kindly insert your favorite they are bad as analogy here. Dreadful, inept, pathetic are some adjectives that describe the tumultuous situation in Kansas City this season. This Steelers Defense is a mirage of what it once was a few years ago, but I see a different defense coming on of late. After a strong performance in the Meadowlands last weekend I see some home-cooking with a possible defensive TD at Heinz Field this week. It could be a shutout the way I’ve seen the Chiefs move the ball lately and without having led a game during regulation this season also poses a problem about playing continuously from behind. Great matchup = must play on Sunday.