Target Town: Week 8
October 30, 2013 | John Kerwin
Making A Name For Himself, and Harry Douglas is taking over the targets that Julio Jones and Roddy White should be commanding at this point in the season. It isn’t a fluke that Douglas has found himself on this list two weeks in a row, and I would expect this to continue as long as Roddy is out of the lineup. Hauling in 12 receptions for 122 yards is a great game, but I would like to see Douglas make his way into the end zone if he is going to garner 18 targets in a single game. The Falcons look like a sub-par football team at best this season, and I would expect Matt Ryan to be airing it out early and often. Make sure Douglas isn’t sitting on any of your waiver wires, and get this guy in at your flex position or WR3 if you are a bit weak at receiver.
Is He Man, Or Machine? Honestly, he may be a bit of both, because I have never witnessed an NFL wide receiver so dominant in my entire life. Calvin Johnson may go down as one of the greatest receivers to play the game, and hopefully you have him on at least on of your fantasy teams. Bringing in 12 receptions is solid, but his 329 yards receiving is just ridiculous. There almost aren’t words for numbers like that in a single game. Megatron was able to accumulate more receiving yards than most quarterbacks totaled in Week 8, and many mediocre receivers will be content for yardage like that for an entire season. Be grateful that you drafted this beast, because he is showing us all why he was without question worthy of a first round draft tag.
Get Used To It, because I told everyone last week that Vincent Jackson is going to be a target machine for the foreseeable future, and you can lock that into the remainder of the season with Mike Williams finding his way onto the injured reserve list. With Doug Martin possibly lost for the season as well, Mike Glennon is going to be forced to latch onto his only star weapon left, and VJax owners are going to heavily benefit from the garbage time production he is going to produce. I would keep him locked into all lineups and enjoy the miserable situation taking place in Tampa Bay right now.
This Isn’t Salsa Music, but could it be a fix for Nicks? Hakeem Nicks has now hurdled the trade deadline, and remains on the Giants roster for the remainder of at least this season. We can stop using the trade rumors as an excuse for his abysmal play, and maybe get excited that Nicks could provide for frustrated owners. Victor Cruz looked to have dodged a bullet with his neck injury this past weekend, but there is still no definitive answer on the seriousness of the injury. It was refreshing to see Nicks get 12 targets, but his seven receptions for a measly 51 yards wasn’t much to cheer about. The simple fact of the matter is that Nicks just can’t be trusted as a consistent fantasy option. He finally gets his opportunity and comes up very short, and it is not surprising to a single fantasy owner. At this point, a lot of us would’ve just preferred that Nicks was traded so he could attempt to revitalize in new surroundings.
He Is A Machine, In PPR Formats…It looks like Antonio Brown is here to stay folks, and nobody is missing Mike Wallace in Pittsburgh. Even though the Steelers don’t look like much of a force this season, which may actually be benefiting Brown. The Steelers have found themselves behind in many games already this year, and Ben Roethlisberger has no choice but to air it out behind a miserable offensive line. We aren’t seeing the long ball connections we were hoping for, but the quick pass plays are resulting in PPR gold for Brown owners. Keep this guy locked in as a starting receiver in your lineups, because he hasn’t given us a reason to doubt him yet.
The Silent Assassin…There hasn’t been a whole lot of talk surrounding Stevie Johnson this season, and with the troubles of C.J. Spiller and the loss of E.J. Manuel, it is easy to see why. Johnson just seems to produce no matter what the circumstances are, and he may not be putting up monster numbers, but he is a great WR3/Flex option. As long as he can stay healthy and on the field, Johnson is a great fill-in as a low-end starter, and deserves some merit for his play.
Get This Guy A Quarterback, and get DeSean Jackson the ball in open space, Chip Kelly! I don’t use exclamation points in my writing very often, but I wanted to emphasize that statement. This high-octane Eagles offense has turned into an erratic mess. Michael Vick is in and out of the lineup every week, and Matt Barkley doesn’t deserve to hold a starting quarterbacks jock strap at this point in his career. I’m hoping the return of Nick Foles will bring some good fortune to this offense, because I am sick of watching LeSean McCoy and DJax go to waste in this putrid excuse for an NFL offense. I’m starting DJax each and every week without hesitation, but I would like to see those WR1 outbursts that we witnessed at the beginning of the season.
The Target King, and he isn’t slowing up any time soon. Pierre Garcon has quietly been the most consistently targeted receiver this entire season so far, and the Redskins aren’t turning to a run-heavy offense any time soon. The emergence of Jordan Reed has slowed up a bit of the targets, but Garcon continues to see double-digits every single week. His production has been spotty with the unpredictable play of Robert Griffin III, but I am continuing to roll with Garcon as long as he is getting the looks.
Keep Your Head Up, and keep that neck supported well. Victor Cruz gave us all a bit of a scare this past weekend when he left the Giants game after a motionless neck injury. Word has arisen that it isn’t anything serious, but we will all feel much better when Cruz is back on the field. I can’t afford to watch Nicks garner the bundle of Giants targets and do nothing with them for another week. The last three weeks have been fairly disappointing for Cruz, but we all know he is capable of exploding during any game. He is still the favorite target of Eli Manning, and he will continue to be a top target receiver when he is on the field, get well soon Victor.
Stop The Comparisons, because Jordan Reed is going to make a name for himself in the NFL. Everyone is touting Reed as the next Aaron Hernandez, but Reed is going to quickly have people questioning who that guy even is. This kid has burst onto the scene during his rookie tenure, and has left his organization shopping the likes of their starting tight end to begin the season. The versatility of Reed is dynamic, and the capability of lining him up against linebackers and smaller corners is scary for opposing defenses. The Redskins look like they’re going to do their best to exploit mismatches all over the field whenever possible with their new shiny toy, and you should be doing the same in your fantasy lineups. Reed is locked in as a TE1 for the rest of the season as far as I’m concerned, and there are less than a handful of guys I’d even be starting over him at this point.
Missing That Wow Factor and Scott Chandler basically suits that description no matter what he does on an NFL field. He was a bit of a touchdown machine last season, but the changes in personnel have altered the game plan quite a bit in Buffalo, but plain Jane Scott was able to have himself a decent game over the weekend. You aren’t going to see Megatron type yards, but seven catches and 72 yards is a very respectable stat line for a guy that is sitting on 99% of waiver wires as we speak. It is tough to trust Chandler as a starting tight end in anything other than very deep leagues, but he deserves a pat on the back for this past week’s performance.
The Good, The Bad, And The Old…It is very promising to see Tony Gonzalez grace the Top 5 target list, but his three receptions for 26 yards isn’t very commendable. The Atlanta Falcons are basically falling apart at the seams, and ancient Gonzalez isn’t getting any younger. Even with Julio and Roddy sidelined, he hasn’t been able to produce like we’d expect over the last two weeks. He isn’t at the age where he is capable of creating space for himself anymore, and the fact that the top two weapons in the passing game have been out is probably hurting him. He is still a startable tight end, but there are a few youngsters that I’d be starting over the old man if I have the choice.
Clay Has Been Unearthed, and has been garnering the targets that were supposed to be going to Dustin Keller this season. With the gruesome injury before the start of the season, many people were left sighing at the potential they were salivating over in the late-rounds of fantasy drafts. Fortunately for those who were patient, or desperate, Charles Clay has emerged as a fairly consistent option in the Dolphins offense. With the season ending injury to Brandon Gibson, this is only going to open up more opportunity for the undersized Clay. I see him as a great asset in deep leagues, and he could prove to be a viable spot start as the season progresses.
The Wright Choice…just hopefully he isn’t sitting on the wrong fantasy roster. Tim Wright has been a breakout tight end in the fantasy world over the past few weeks, and he is only going to keep producing in the lowly Buccaneers offense. The converted rookie out of Rutgers has quickly become one of Glennon’s favorite targets outside of VJax. He is a great red zone target, and will also benefit from the loss of Williams. I look for Wright to continue to be the second receiving option in an offense that could see plenty of garbage time as the season winds down. Get this guy locked in as your TE2 if you’re in-need, and don’t hesitate to start him if you need a weekly spot starter.