Fantasy Football

Expect trouble for Green, Wayne

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Michael Harmon

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Additional Harmon Rankings: QBRB, TE/DEF

The 82-yard toss and catch from Roethlisberger to Wallace was a thing of beauty. Fantasy owners hoped to see at least one more in the second half of the game. Alas, Wallace would record only one more catch for 12 yards.

His counterpart, Kenny Britt, struggled to corral multiple passes, but he did exhibit great concentration to record his first touchdown of the season. Britt caught just four of his 11 targets for 62 yards and dropped multiple passes (including one in the end zone). He’ll be ready to dominate in Week 7 against the Bills. Matt Hasselbeck warrants an early “sleeper” tag in what will be called “Fantasy Armageddon.” Just go look at the teams on their Bye.

Let’s get back to the action. We still await word on Percy Harvin, Greg Jennings and Hakeem Nicks as teams get ready for their Friday practices. Keep it locked on Sunday morning for the chat musings of our esteemed panel of experts.

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For now, I’ll diving into another round of “Lineup Calls” to preview the wide receiver position for Week 6. Go deep.

Remember that the Bears, Saints, Panthers and Jaguars are OFF this week.



(Exclude Andre Johnson, Roddy White, Victor Cruz, Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Wes Welker and Julio Jones)

Demaryius Thomas at SD
Can he stop the streak? Thomas continues to pile up big receptions and a mountain of YAC, but he’s fumbled in three straight games. He’s on deck for another huge effort in Week 6 against the Chargers. San Diego has allowed the ninth-most fantasy points to wide receivers, including last week’s dominant effort by Marques Colston.

DeSean Jackson vs. DET
A much-maligned Detroit defense returns to action following the Week 5 Bye against Michael Vick and the Philadelphia passing game. You might be surprised to find that the Lions have allowed the seventh-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers. Still, I’m anticipating big plays in Week 6 from Jackson. He’s been targeted 9.2 times per game, producing 78.2 yards per game (16.9 yards per reception).

Dwayne Bowe at TB
Bowe has caught six or more passes in four consecutive games entering Sunday’s tilt and has generated two 100-yard games. He’ll earn his third 100-yard game against the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay has allowed the third-most fantasy points to wide receivers (269 receiving yards and 0.75 touchdowns). I’m not concerned that Brady Quinn is under center. He’ll target Bowe frequently, just as Matt Cassel would have as the starter (57 targets through five games).

Vincent Jackson vs. KC
Jackson was a hit-or-miss proposition for fantasy owners during the first quarter of the season. He logged two 100-yard games in which he scored and posted two games with fewer than 50 receiving yards. Jackson ranks a mid-WR2 play for me this week against Brandon Flowers. Despite the overall struggles in Kansas City, the Chiefs rank 10th in terms of fantasy points allowed to wide receivers.

Miles Austin at BAL
Will Tony Romo bounce back from the Week 4 beating at the hands of the Bears? The Ravens have allowed the eighth-most yards to wide receivers in 2012, but have yielded just two touchdowns to wide receivers.

Austin has benefitted from the attention afforded Dez Bryant through the first quarter of the season, and the healthy return of Jason Witten can only help. Austin will draw coverage from Cary Williams, who has posted an uneven season in the Baltimore secondary.

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Michael Crabtree vs. NYG
Crabtree posted a fantastic breakthrough game in Week 5 against the Bills. He tallied six receptions for 113 yards and scored for the first time this season. In fact, Crabtree caught at least six passes for the fourth time in five games (27 receptions in 38 targets overall).

The Giants have allowed the eighth-most fantasy points to wide receivers this season.

Malcom Floyd vs. DEN
Floyd rebounded from back-to-back sub-par efforts to post his second 100-yard game of the season against the Saints in Week 5. He’s averaged nearly seven targets per game while averaging 17.9 yards per catch. Floyd will draw coverage from Champ Bailey, a one-on-one matchup that will draw a ton of attention. Bailey’s presence keeps the 6-foot-5 receiver among the back-end WR2 options. His big-play capability still warrants a start in most lineups.




Andre Roberts vs. BUF
Roberts didn’t find much running room in Week 5 against the Rams, but he did catch five passes, his third game with at least five receptions. He’s topped 60 receiving yards only once this season, but his high target count (seven per game) puts him on the board for a WR3 spot this week. The Bills have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to wide receivers this season (184.8 yards and two touchdowns per game). Alex Smith lit up the scored in Week 5. Kevin Kolb is in line to do the same at home this week.

James Jones at HOU
With Greg Jennings and Jermichael Finley still “questionable” for the Sunday night showdown with the Texans, Jones remains a strong WR3 play. He’s come up huge in the red zone in back-to-back weeks (four touchdowns), producing nine receptions for 102 yards overall. It’s not a glory matchup for a ton of YAC against the Texans, but Jones has proven capable of finding a spot to sit down in the end zone.

Mike Williams vs. KC
Williams logged 115 receiving yards against the Redskins in Week 4. He’s been targeted 22 times through four games running opposite Vincent Jackson and will be in line for a sizable target count this week. The Buccaneers return from the Bye week with a matchup against the heretofore sieve-like Kansas City defense. Look for Greg Schiano to establish the ground game and then take shots downfield.

Robert Meachem vs. DEN
Meachem busted out of an early-season funk with a two-touchdown performance against his former team in Week 5. He’s only been targeted 19 times to date, producing nine receptions for 159 yards. However, the Chargers might have found something in Week 5 despite the loss to New Orleans. The healthy return of Ryan Mathews to a full-time role produces a balanced attack and more shots downfield as coordinators contend with Malcom Floyd and Antonio Gates. The Broncos have allowed the 14th-most fantasy points to wide receivers (162 yards and a touchdown per game).

Jeremy Kerley vs. IND
It’s difficult to dive into the New York passing attack, but Kerley has emerged as a decent high-end WR4 option for Mark Sanchez. He’s caught 15-of-23 targets for 291 yards. Given the number of Bye week absences and injury issues on the board, Kerley is worth a look-see in Week 6 against Indianapolis. The Colts have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to wide receivers (178.8 receiving yards and 1.75 receiving touchdowns allowed per game).

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A.J. Green at CLE
Don’t worry. I haven’t flipped my lid. Green still rates as a back-end WR1 this week given his huge target count. I’m merely putting forth a cautionary note for the Ohio rematch. It’s a difficult proposition this week with Joe Haden back in the fold following his four-game suspension. Green is also working through a knee injury.

Reggie Wayne at NYJ
Similarly, Wayne is in your lineup either as a low-end WR1 or high-WR2. He’s been a fantastic story to follow in 2012, and he’s coming off of a remarkable individual effort against the Packers.

The Jets have been disappointing overall, but the pass defense has played effectively despite the loss of Darrelle Revis. New York has allowed the fourth-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers. Wayne draws coverage from Antonio Cromartie in this one.

Torrey Smith vs. DAL
Smith exploded on the 2012 fantasy scene with two huge games in prime time following his brother’s death. He was stifled by the Chiefs in a largely unwatchable game on the road, producing just three receptions for 38 yards on four targets. I’m not anticipating a ton of free releases this week against Brandon Carr and Morris Claiborne.

Pierre Garcon vs. MIN
Garcon has been active the past two weeks, but he’s offered little to fantasy lineups. The speedy offseason acquisition has produced just four receptions for 44 yards in the past two weeks. Garcon continues to be affected by the foot injury sustained in Week 1. On the plus side, Garcon was targeted seven times last week against the Falcons. He’s still no better than a mid-WR3 slot this week.

Tagged: Falcons, Bills, Bengals, Browns, Cowboys, Broncos, Lions, Packers, Titans, Colts, Chiefs, Patriots, Saints, Giants, Jets, Eagles, 49ers, Buccaneers, Redskins, Ravens, Cardinals, Chargers, Texans, Michael Vick, Reggie Wayne, Andre Johnson, Wes Welker, Malcom Floyd, Vincent Jackson, Alex Smith, Greg Jennings, Miles Austin, James Jones, Dwayne Bowe, Robert Meachem, DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon, Cary Williams, Michael Crabtree, Andre Roberts, Mike Williams, Julio Jones, A.J. Green, Torrey Smith, Jeremy Kerley

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