Yes, the same Nick Foles that went 11 for 29 passing against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 7 turned in a Peyton Manning style performance in Week 9, throwing for a seven-pack of touchdowns. Foles’ 40+ point fantasy performance may have been the most surprising, but there were plenty of other notable performances on Sunday, including long awaited signs of life from C.J. Spiller and Tom Brady. Buckle up and refill that coffee mug as we dig into a few highlights and lowlights from Week 9’s fake football action:
Mike James: In his finest performance since taking over for the injured Doug Martin, Mike James rumbled for 158 yards against Seattle on Sunday and even chipped in with a touchdown pass on a fancy trick play. James will continue to be a moderate flex play as long as Martin is out, so feel free to keep trotting him out if your team has a case of the bye weeks, or a case of the Darren McFaddens.
C.J. Spiller: Fantasy owners finally got a contribution from their first round pick in Week 9 as Spiller racked up 155 total yards against the Kansas City Chiefs. Despite the performance, Spiller still doesn’t look 100% healthy and seemed to be in pain quite frequently on Buffalo’s sideline throughout Sunday’s game. Stay up on the news out of Buffalo this week, as it will likely be the same “oh he is sort of, kind of healthy” routine with a questionable tag slapped on our favorite Bills running back.
Adrian Peterson: The hammy issues that were plaguing Peterson seems to finally be in the past, as AP stacked up 177 total yards and a score on Sunday in his best performance since Week 4. Peterson wasn’t in danger of being benched (by sane people) but this performance was encouraging nonetheless. Washington is up next for Peterson, which is a matchup worth paying for (daily fantasy degenerates, I’m talking to you).
Zac Stacy: The Rams may not be any good this season, but they have found at least one player to build around. Zac Stacy turned in another stellar performance in Week 9, as he spun 27 carries into 127 rushing yards and even added six catches for 51 yards through the air. That is 307 total yards for the young St. Louis back over the last two weeks, which is quite impressive considering who the Rams trot out at the other skill positions. The Rams’ remaining schedule isn’t the prettiest, but I generally like to side with the player averaging 30 touches a game over his last two contests.
Chris Ivory: Ivory erupted for 139 yards and a score on Sunday and has now become the poster child for game flow impacting running backs. Week 7 saw the Jets hang with the Patriots and feed Ivory 34 carries along the way. In Week 8, the Jets fell behind the Bengals early and the “Bilal Powell Show” (ratings bonanza) took over, leaving Ivory with only six touches. Week 9 appeared to be a much more Powell-esque game on paper, as the Jets would likely be throwing to keep up with Drew Brees and the Saints. Of course, the exact opposite happened and Ivory had himself another ballgame. Roll Ivory out there if you need him but be aware that clunkers are in the cards if the Jets fall behind.
Keenan Allen: We will keep this short and sweet. Keenan Allen is a stud. Allen racked up eight grabs for 128 yards and a score on Sunday to continue his hot streak. Allen is now averaging 99.4 yards per game over San Diego’s last five contests and is an absolute must-start. Try to look at Allen’s fantasy playoff schedule and keep yourself from drooling. NYG, @DEN, OAK face Allen and the Chargers in Weeks 14-16 so make sure your team gets to the postseason and our boy Keenan will take care of the rest.
Jonathan Stewart: Long lost dynasty dreamboat Jonathan Stewart resurfaced on Sunday and was immediately Carolina’s most productive running back. Stewart tallied 65 total yards on nine carries and three catches in his return from ankle issues. Like usual, the Panthers’ two rushing scores went to their quarterback and their 450 lb (estimate) bowling ball Mike Tolbert. Stewart’s upside is capped by the Carolina red zone jumble, but he should be a decent flex play as long as he keeps contributing in the passing game, which has always been one of his better skills.
Nick Foles: The Eagles started Nick Foles this week and Foles responded by chucking a whopping seven touchdown passes. Besides being amazed by this performance, we also learned that Riley Cooper’s name doesn’t make Foles’ skin crawl as it does the rest of us, as Cooper was on the other end of three scores on Sunday. Foles has Green Bay and Washington upcoming, so if you are a struggling Jay Cutler or Michael Vick owner, you could probably squeeze two more decent starts out of the Eagles backup/starter/sort of both.
Tom Brady: Handsome Tom got his groove back in Week 9, as he set season highs in yards (432) and touchdown passes (four) while hanging a fifty burger on the Steelers. Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Dobson, and Danny Amendola all racked up over 120 yards receiving in this one, as Pittsburgh got absolutely hammered by the Pats. Brady’s use of Dobson (five catches on nine targets for 130 yards and two scores) was nice to see, as it looked like Brady finally had a full complement of weapons for one afternoon. Tom and the Pats now get a bye week to rest up and prepare for life with Shane Vereen in the fold.
T.Y Hilton: It was a slow start, but T.Y. Hilton rewarded patient fantasy owners with a touchdown hat trick in the last 15:05 of Sunday Night Football. Hilton’s final line of seven catches for 121 yards on 12 targets was a nice sight for the man expected to help fill the void left by Reggie Wayne. Darrius Heyward-Bey is just not very good at football, so we should see a ton of Andrew Luck to T.Y. Hilton hook ups for the rest of the season, which is mighty fine by us here at The Fake Football.
Case Keenum: Houston’s golden boy Case Keenum looked like an old veteran on Sunday, as he threw for 350 yards, three touchdowns, and zero interceptions against Indianapolis. Keenum was locked onto Andre Johnson all night (why wouldn’t he, right?) and rightfully seems to be taking a liking to his stud receiver. Keenum has yet to throw an interception in two games, which is a decent feat for a young quarterback in the NFL and he will be starting for the foreseeable future. Houston gets Oakland once and Jacksonville twice over the next five weeks, so Keenum may be able to keep this momentum rolling. Keenum will still be a QB2 type, but dual QB leaguers and dynasty folks need to take notice, pronto.
Darren Sproles: The fake football world’s favorite PPR back suffered a concussion early in New Orleans’ Week 9 game against the Jets and did not return. Sproles’ Week 10 status is now uncertain, so make sure to keep tabs on news out of New Orleans this week. Pierre Thomas picked up the receiving slack in Sproles’ absence (seven catches, 66 yards), so he could be in line for a solid performance next week if Sproles sits out.