Oh my gosh, it’s that time of the year already? It’s the 1st dreaded BYE week. This is any fantasy players’ worst part of the game. It’s when you have to take someone from your Bench that could be projected to get 3 points and replace him for one of your studs that’s been averaging 25 pts. And them dreaded bye weeks are not the best time to play with your Fanduel promo code, not by a long shot! Sometimes you have to go to the Waiver Wire (WW) or Free Agency (FA) to find a player that through the first four games is averaging more than that Bench player with the 3 pts. You might DROP your worst player and ADD the one from the WW or FA lists. One of the reasons we suggest you start working on your team early in the week is that come BYE weeks other fantasy players attack the WW or FA lists early in the week. If you wait until Friday or Saturday the pickings could be slim. It’s another reason I suggest loading your team with RBs and WRs. Some formats allow you to use 3 QBs, so use that option wisely. Try not to put a RB, WR or TE in that 2nd or 3rd QB slot as QBs will almost ALWAYS score more FF points than the other 3 positions. Whichever avenue you use, still give the replacement players all of the other considerations we have been discussing these last 5 weeks. (refer to ALL of the posts). To find out which players aren’t playing look at your teams BYE week column. You should already know by now. But in case you’re just finding out, there are still good players on your Bench and on the WW and FA lists.
Be careful that if you DROP a player to get a FA there is no guarantee you’ll get him back. If he’s half way decent another team will snatch him up quicker than a mosquito could bite a donkeys’ butt. If you are using a Bench replacement make sure to flip them back for week 6. If you are not sure who to use, send in your question and we’ll give you our suggestions in plenty of time to set your roster. This week we had plenty of our followers ask about replacement players. I thought I would add one to this report to show how and why we decide on picking between two or more players. Here it is:
Jim wrote us asking who he should play, Phil Rivers (QB SD) or Matthew Stafford (QB Det). Our response:
This is a very big game for Detroit. They will have a national audience on Monday Night Football and a chance to go 5-0. Plus they are playing a divisional rival and that always jacks the players up. Although I like Rivers (I drafted him on one of my teams) all of the statistics indicate that for week 5 GO WITH STAFFORD. The only category that would lean towards Rivers is Opponents Ranking.
Stafford, who will have the extra juice and motivation players get when they’re on MNF, is playing Chicago at home. The Bears are ranked 9th on Defense. Rivers is playing Denver, ranked 25th on Defense. Through 4 weeks Stafford is averaging 31 fantasy points vs. Rivers 22. In week 5 Stafford will pass for over 300 yds with 3 TDs and give you at least 30 -35 fantasy points. I also see a high scoring game (38-31 Detroit over Chicago) so 40 fantasy points is not out of the question. Good luck.
As you can see there is a lot to think about when deciding who to play. Here is another consideration: If you happen to have a WR (usually a #1 WR on his NFL teams’ depth chart) and they are playing the New York Jets you may not want to play a WR that will be facing the Jets. New York will usually have Darrelle Revis cover the opposing teams’ #1 receiver. In this weeks match up the Jets will probably have Revis cover New Englands’ Wes Welker. Here is where it gets tricky. Revis has been very succesful in all but shutting down the other teams’ #1 WR. Yet some people (myself included) advise to play your studs (a top 10 ranked player) NO MATTER WHAT! Sounds like we’re talking out of both sides of our mouths? Well, you’re right we are. Thats’ why we say GO WITH YOUR GUT FEELING. When all the stats are researched, trust your instincts. And when Revis shuts down Welker, just chalk it up to a bad week for Welker. You still have to play him. If Revis shuts down WRs 99% of the time, maybe Welker will be that 1% that has his normal BIG game. Keep in mind, we’re not solving our nations unemployment rate, it’s just a game.
Speaking of statistics, don’t pay them any attention… Just kidding, don’t freak out, nothing being smoked here. What I meant is that sometimes we can’t rely solely on them. Case in point. All of the preseason projections from all of the services had the Pittsburgh Steelers ranked #1 on Defense. As you can see, after 4 weeks that projection did not hold up. And now that James Harrison (OLB) is out (he’s the one that tries to take QBs heads off), the climb back to #1 just got that much harder. Most fantasy team owners are panicking and dropping the Steelers. I’m not. It’s only been 4 games. I’ll give them another game or two, maybe three or four. Why? The next 2 games (Tenn. #7, Baltimore #1) might be tough, but then again maybe not. The Steelers are a proud franchise that may want to prove they still have more gas left in the tank. It’s possible that they could hold the Titans and Ravens to 10 points or less. Anything is possible. I could see them letting Ray Rice (RB Baltimore) run up and down the field but, if they keep him out of the end zone 10 or fewer points is a REAL possibility. The following 2 games are against Seattle, #28 and Indy, #22. I like those match ups. Enough to make me want to keep them on my roster for another week or two or maybe three or four.
Lots of stuff to consider isn’t it? That’s what makes it fun. Just make sure you take care of your players on BYE and now that there will be BYES each week get into the habit of planning ahead. Do that and you’ll stay ahead of the rest of the pack.