Week 6 was a strange one to say the least. Most thought the Steelers would score at will versus Miami but that roll came up snake eyes. They are just not the same high scoring offensive team on the road as they are at home. This can be frustrating for Fantasy owners as they undoubtedly wanted to start any and all of their Steelers today. The Packers and Aaron Rodgers just look off. Where are all of our high scoring teams? Sure, we still have the Patriots but it seems that the rest of the NFL is having consistency problems. Maybe defenses have caught up a little bit to the new rules. I don’t think so, but we haven’t seen the same crisp and consistent offensive football that we are used to.
Denver at San Diego: Trevor Siemian returned for this game but actually looked like he should’ve taken another week off. He missed a wide open Emmanuel Sanders, for what should’ve been a touchdown early in the game, and life never did get any better. The buzz all week was about Devontae Booker and how he might take over the starting role from C.J. Anderson eventually. His final numbers looked impressive but remember, Anderson had several big plays and a score called back due to penalties.
There is a changing of the guard as far as TE is concerned in SD. Hunter Henry should see more and more snaps as the season rolls along. Antonio Gates may be a future Hall of Famer, but Henry is the better player right now and a low end TE1 for me.
San Francisco at Buffalo: Colin Kaepernick was predictably pretty awful at QB, completing only 13 of 29 passes for 187 yards. His best skill is still running. Jeremy Kerley’s value continues to decrease with Kaep behind center. Do you think LeSean McCoy enjoyed sticking it to Chip Kelly in this game?
Cleveland at Tennessee: That was a pretty impressive performance by Cody Kessler (26-41, 336 yards, 2 TDs). He should remain the starting QB for the rest of the season as long as he remains healthy. Fantasy- wise that may not mean much, except in leagues in which you can start two QBs, but even in those leagues he wouldn’t be an automatic start. The running game was non-existent but that was a product of playing a strong Titans run defense more than anything else. I’m officially on board the Marcus Mariota bandwagon. We have been talking about him for two weeks now. Not so much about his impressive play but about his upcoming schedule, which is just too good to ignore. He won’t make my Top 10, but he won’t be that far out of it either. Now if only Tajae Sharpe would show up as well.
Baltimore at Giants: No injury was reported but Joe Flacco didn’t have the best ending, as he had several poor throws at the end of the game. A big part of the passing offense is Flacco throwing the ball deep to Mike Wallace and hoping for either a reception or pass interference. That won’t work every week. This game was the definition of why you don’t panic about your studs. Odell Beckham had one of the best games of his young career. Eli Manning was good and bad. In the first half, you probably wanted to send him packing but in the second half, he showed why most of us had him ranked in the Top 10 to start the season. With his weapons, he should truly be dangerous.
Carolina at New Orleans: The Panthers’ defense has been awful of late and it can’t all be because of the release of Josh Norman during the offseason. Until further notice you have to consider starting just about anyone on your passing offense against them. Jonathan Stewart had two rushing TDs in his return to action in this game, but what was noticeable was that Cam Newton did not attempt to rush the ball until the game was on the line. Was this the game plan? Was Carolina trying to protect him? If so, it’s the smart thing to do. It would lower his Fantasy value a bit, since a good part of his value is due to his ability to run. Stewart owners, however, may be salivating at the thought of Newton no longer stealing goal line carries. Mark Ingram owners, on the other hand, are not happy, as he had yet another ho-hum game and was once again taken out in some red zone situations. Brandin Cooks, like Beckham, had a monster game. There will be some games in which I can see sitting Cooks (when on the road) but for the most part, he’s a mainstay in my lineup. Coby Fleener had two scores and is back in the good graces of his owners. Willie Snead owners may want to strangle him, though, as it appeared that he ran the wrong route and caught a touchdown ball that was destined for Snead.
Jacksonville at Chicago: The running game is just non-existent in Jacksonville. It was extremely frustrating the first time the Jags had the ball inside the 5-yard line. They gave the ball to Ivory on first-down. He carried to the one. Then they threw the ball on the next two plays. Didn’t you sign Ivory to be your bulldozer, especially at the goal line? They rectified this later in the game. Sure, Brian Hoyer didn’t throw a TD pass but it wasn’t because he played poorly. He threw for over 300 yards; he just couldn’t get the ball in for a score. He’s still a useful bye week QB. He even found Alshon Jeffery seven times, although he does seem to have better chemistry with Cam Meredith.
Los Angeles at Detroit: Those hoping or praying that Case Keenum would eventually lose the starting job to Jared Goff, can just about forget about it. Keenum is not only playing well but head coach Jeff Fisher doesn’t seem to be in any rush to make such a switch. Kenny Britt is also not in any rush to see Goff at QB, as he is once again worthy of a waiver wire claim. Remember, though, he has teased us before. This seem to be the week that highly ranked wide receivers, who hadn’t done much this season, rewarded Fantasy owners for their patience. Welcome to the 2016 NFL season Golden Tate. Those owners who spent a waiver claim on Justin Forsett, that didn’t work out so well. I’ll consider Theo Riddick (ankle) when he returns but I’m not interested in any other RB for Detroit.
Pittsburgh at Miami: Ben Roethlisberger suffered a torn meniscus during the game and will be out for at least next week’s game versus the Patriots. This is, of course, a huge loss for Fantasy owners, and more importantly, Antonio Brown owners. Brown has never caught a TD pass from any other QB in his career other than Big Ben. Sammie Coates was always going to be a gamble in this game but once the Steelers activated him, so did most Fantasy owners. Sometimes you’re the bug, sometimes you’re the windshield. This is rushing yardage by week for Jay Ajayi, 0, 14, 28, 33, 42, 204. No one saw this coming. Is the Steelers’ defense that bad? Does this mean there is an even time share between Ajayi and Arian Foster? Another RBBC, just what we need.
Cincinnati at New England: Brandon LaFell may have scored a TD but Tyler Boyd should be the WR you want to own after A.J. Green. This team needs Tyler Eifert back but I’m going to have a tough time starting him until I see him play. James White had one of those games that will make it very difficult to determine his Fantasy value. He had seven carries for 19 yards and eight receptions for 47 yards and two scores. Without the touchdowns, his value is severely limited to PPR leagues. The problem is NE is going to score a whole bunch of points this season. Sure, there will be some weeks in which he just isn’t in the game plan but until Dion Lewis comes back, he’s at least a Flex play for me in PPR leagues.
Philadelphia at Washington: Has the league caught up to Carson Wentz? He looked off Sunday, completing only 11 of 22 passes for 179 yards and zero scores. His play the last couple of weeks is what we would expect from a rookie. Sunday was concerning as Washington has been picked on through the air early and often this season. When you watch Kirk Cousins you can see why Washington is hesitant to give him a long-term contract, as he does make some head scratching throws. Matt Jones has woken up the past two weeks. Maybe the threat by head coach Jay Gruden to give more playing time to Ray Kelley has motivated Jones to pick up his play. Kelley could still be a claim in deeper leagues. Jordan Reed missed the game, and as with any concussion, we really don’t know when he will return.
Kansas City at Oakland: The Chiefs are just trolling us with their running game. Jamaal Charles plays, but only has 11 touches (one TD). Spencer Ware vastly outperforms him (163 total yards, TD). It’s not going to be a ton of fun trying to figure out where to rank these two each week, but at the very least, you want to hold onto Ware. What happened to Michael Crabtree? Was it the weather or is Amari Cooper yet another receiver who is finally playing up to his WR1 status? Just like with Detroit, I don’t want much to do with this RB situation but if I have to, it will be Latavius Murray then DeAndre Washington.
Atlanta at Seattle: Many Fantasy owners may have sat Matt Ryan in this game and I can’t blame them, as the matchup looked awful, but once the weather cleared up, so did the Atlanta passing game. It was thought that Julio Jones would have a tough matchup in this one. Well, seven catches, 139 yards, and a score later, not really. Tevin Coleman did, though, with only 17 total yards but he’ll still be in my lineup next time. If you have any doubts, Jimmy Graham offered more evidence Sunday as to why he is once again one of the top TE in the game. He’s a must-start for me. Christine Michael owners are hoping that Thomas Rawls never comes back.
Dallas at Green Bay: I’m as big a Tony Romo fan as anyone, but he’s not getting the starting job back. What else do you want Dak Prescott to do? He has reeled off five straight wins now, and the last three have been without Dez Bryant. The Cowboys have a bye next week and Dez should be back for the Monday night game versus Philadelphia in Week 8. The Packers’ offense just looks out of sync. Aaron Rodgers, for the most part, had all day to throw Sunday but still failed to make big plays. Some of that credit belongs to the Dallas secondary. Some of the blame falls on the Green Bay receivers, but Rodgers just doesn’t look like the same player right now. Fantasy-wise he’s still a start, but he’s no longer a Top 5 option. Eddie Lacy ran over the Cowboys but his ankle may have limited how much work he could do, and with James Starks out for the immediate future with a torn meniscus, the Packers need Lacy to stay healthy.
Indianapolis at Houston: Frank Gore became the first Colts back to rush for at least 100 yards in a game since 2012. That may pretty much tell you all you need to know about the Colts and their offensive line. Dwayne Allen suffered an ankle injury during the game and didn’t return. The value for Jack Doyle just got a little bit higher. Lamar Miller had a big game, as he rushed for over 130 yards. But more importantly, he had two touchdowns, his first two of the season. Will Fuller, who we thought would be inactive, ended up being active for the game but was just a break glass in case of emergency player.
As always feel free to follow me on Twitter and ask any questions you, @georgekurtz.