This edition of MYWFG is a forecast of Week 8's fantasy players that you should consider sitting or starting. Obviously, anyone on a BYE is a no-brainer to sit, but I'm going to get a bit deeper into it than something that simple. For example, the weather in Buffalo shows no chance of precipitation and partly sunny skies, what type of affect will that have on the fantasy players? Will the Dolphins starting two rookie corners have an impact on what Jets WR to start? Take a look and see.
RB to Sit
Marshawn Lynch BUF vs. HOU - The Houston defense hasn't allowed a 100-yard rusher since Week 3 when Maurice Jones-Drew scampered for 119 yards and 3 TDs. The Texans also have only allowed 2 rushing TDs since that contest, so any notion of starting Lynch should be extinguished. The weather should be suitable playing conditions at Ralph Wilson Stadium, so I expect Houston to remain excellent against the run (if it were snowy, or rainy I may think otherwise). DeMeco Ryans and Brian Cushing are both probable, and despite Lynch's increasing work load (17 carries last week, Fred Jackson had 2) it's best to bench this Bill. Week 8 Forecast: 50 total yards, 0 TDs
RB to Start
Ryan Grant GB vs. MIN - Ok, so you're looking at your roster and you see vs. MIN beside Ryan Grant's name, so you automatically think "bench him". Normally, I would agree, but not this season. The Vikings aren't the same against the run as in year's past; RBs have been averaging 4.1 ypc against Minnesota in 2009. While the Vikings have only allowed two rushing TDs, they have been allowing some RBs to put up good numbers (see: Ray Rice week 6). In Ryan Grant's Week 4 meeting with the Vikings, he had 101 total yards (50 receiving) while averaging 4.6 ypc. I expect similar numbers this week as the Packers try to control the clock and thwart Brett Favre's return to Lambeau. Week 8 Forecast: 110 total yards, 1 TD
After the jump, I'll look at some WRs, QBs and some additional sleepers...
WR to Sit
Braylon Edwards NYJ vs. MIA - The Dolphins have only allowed one Wide Reciever to top 100 yards against them and that was Vincent Jackson in Week 2. Braylon Edwards had a good debut with the Jets in his first meeting against the Dolphins, catching 5 passes for 64 yards and a TD. With Mark Sanchez' recent struggles, Edwards has had just 4 catches in his last two contests for a grand total of 54 yards. The Dolphins are starting two rookie corners, so it may be tempting for you to want and start Edwards, but I suggest otherwise. The Jets will be pounding the rock, and the Dolphins have a tendency to allow TEs to out produce WRs. Week 8 forecast: 55 total yards, 0 TDs
WR to Start
Michael Crabtree SF @ IND - Conventional wisdom would say don't start any 49er WR against the Colts this Sunday, but since I'm a homer, I'll say otherwise. The Colts have a superb pass defense this season, allowing just 179.8 ypg and have yielded just 2 Pass TDs total. There are two variables to consider: 1. The Colts quality of opponents and 2. The Niners could be trailing and having to pass. When playing the Cardinals, the Colts allowed 3 WRs to top 70 yards and a TD score (the secondary's toughest match-up by far). Indy also allowed T.J. Houshmandzadeh to catch 8 passes for 103 when Seattle travelled to Lucas Oil Stadium. Michael Crabtree is the 49ers best WR (yeah, even after just one game) and he'll have ample opportunity to make plays, even with Alex Smith behind a terrible O-Line. Week 8 forecast: 90 total yards, 1 TD
QB to Sit
David Garrard JAX @ TEN - But the Titans have the worst pass defense in the league you say? I'm afraid you are correct, Tennesse has been allowing 310.7 pypg and 19 pass TDs (so why would you bench Garrard?). For one reason, Garrard has been a rather mediocre QB when on the road; for another, the Jaguars O-Line is about as reliable as the 49ers in pass protection. Yes Garrard had 327 yards and 3 PaTDs in Week 4 against the Titans, but don't expect Tennessee to allow a repeat. The Titans are desperate to get off the snide, their coach was wearing a Peyton Manning Jersey, and Vince Young has been named the starting QB. This would be a bad week to be facing the Titans defense, because I assume they'll be pretty angry. Week 8 forecast: 190 Pass Yards, 1 PaTD, 1 INT; 30 rush yards
QB to Start
Matthew Stafford DET vs. STL - The Rams have only allowed one 300-yard passer this season (see: David Garrard, week 6), but would have allowed many more if they weren't so busy getting blown out. Enter the Lions, coming off a bye week who probably stand to give the Rams their closest game since the OT loss in Jacksonville. Stafford is questionable, and a game-time decision, but he's had no set backs in practice and should get the green light for kick-off (the same can be said for Calvin Johnson). Keep an eye on the situation just to be cautious, but should Stafford start, he's worth slotting into your lineup. The rookie QB has attempted at least 30 passes in each game he's played in, and has averaged over 220 pypg. In his last outing he threw for 296 and 1 TD (1 INT) against Chicago, so he's definitely got promise (especially against the Lambs). Week 8 forecast: 275 Pass Yards, 3 PaTDs, 1 INT
Team DEF - San Diego vs. Oakland
The Chargers have been absolutely mediocre defensively this season; they've netted just 11 sacks, and have allowed 137.7 rush ypg (while allowing 23.8 ppg). What better way to cure the blues than to have a team like Oakland come to town? JaMarcus Russell will be starting the game, but I'd put a few bucks down saying he won't finish it as he is hands down the worst starting QB in pro football (both NFL and CFL). Darren McFadden will not be returning from injury this weekend either, so the Raiders won't be getting a boost in the run game. Shawne Merriman may actually record a sack this weekend, and it will be his first since 2007. If you've got New England or Pittsburgh's Team DEF and need a BYE replacement, take San Diego (and promptly kick them to the curb after this weekend). Week 8 forecast: 6 points allowed, 3 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 FR
Tight End - Dustin Keller NYJ vs. MIA
Remember earlier when I said the Dolphins are prone to letting Tight Ends go crazy? I wasn't kidding around. They allowed 73 yards and 1 TD to Tony Gonzalez in Week 1, 183 yards and 1 TD to Dallas Clark in Week 2, and 104 yards to Jeremy Shockey last week. Surprisingly, the Dolphins kept Keller off the box score as the Jets TE didn't have a single grab in their first meeting. Keep in mind, Mark Sanchez is a rookie QB, so I'm not too sure how often the Jets will want to pick on Miami's rookie CBs. A good way to build up a QB's confidence is to get him in a rythym with the short passes to the TE. If you had Chris Cooley and are scrambling for a replacement, think about Keller. Week 8 forecast: 50 total yards, 1 TD
That's all I have for today, tune in Sunday to see how my forecasts pan out. In other words, we'll have to wait until tomorrow to see just how wrong I am. Good bye for now, and GO NINERS!