Fantasy Football

End of road for Turner?

Michael Turner (33)
Are the lights going out for The Burner?
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Joel Beall

Joel Beall is a writer for FOXSports.com and WhatIfSports.com. He lives with a Golden Tee machine and a jump shot that’s currently broken. Reach Joel on Twitter @FOXSportsBeall.

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Brutus: What’s the deal with Wes Welker and New England???

Other than Bill Belichick throwing an entire season under the bus over a trivial vendetta?

When a few media members voiced their concern in August that Welker’s refusal of a long-term offer might result in a reduced role, I scoffed at the notion. Sure, the Hoodie is a curmudgeon, but to sacrifice one of his most vital components over such a trifling matter? Even for him, seemed like a stretch. Besides, the beef lies between Welker and the front office, not with Belichick, right?

Wrong. The lack of plays in the Tennessee game could be waved as circumstance, but when the Pats rolled out for their opening series against Arizona with Julian Edelman in Welker's spot? Can’t jive to that song anymore. Not helping matters was the team’s ill-fated attempt in justifying the move by praising Edelman’s performance in the preseason as the catalyst for extended opportunities for the backup. Here’s a little insider tidbit for ya: Julian Edelman, in the words of Chuck Barkley, is turrble, and no argument can rationalize Edelman to earn time over a Pro Bowler like Welker. Well, unless that argument is, “Bill Belichick has lost his mind.”

One common conjecture states New England is shopping Welker, with the truncated time reducing the receiver’s likelihood of injury. I’m calling shenanigans. My hypothesis behind Welker’s diminished appearances: Tom Brady is upset that everybody is blaming him for the overthrow in the Super Bowl rather than Welker being unable to secure the pass, and went to Belichick to bench Welker for his insolence. It’s a theory, probably wrong, just like my belief that the replacement refs are a ruse by the NFL to take everyone’s attention away from player injuries. That’s the great part of having a column, though. I can float these bad boys out and let the public marinate on them.

With Aaron Hernandez out for the next month, Welker should return to his normal shift in the slot. But if Matt Slater starts seeing action over Welker, I demand a congressional hearing.

J. Trivigno (@JTrivigno): Start two WR - Welker/Bryant/Harvin?

As mentioned, Welker should be on the gridiron for the majority of snaps, vouching for implementation in your lineup, and you can’t sit Percy Harvin after his impressive display the past two weeks (18 receptions, 188 yards) despite an ominous matchup. As for Bryant, received an extensive amount of inquiries regarding the Dallas wideout’s prospects after his no-show in Seattle, bizarre since he posted 84 yards in the season opener against New York. Unlike running backs, receivers are prone to submitting pedestrian figures every few weeks, and even two subpar games are nothing to be worried about. Understand the worry with Bryant, but now is not the stage to fret.

Dro: Why did I handcuff Bradshaw with the wrong running back? Coughlin is the new Shanahan.

You take that back, Dro! Ain’t NO coach as cruel to the fantasy community as Mike Shanahan! In fact, the Mastermind just read that comment and realized Alfred Morris is getting too much love for his exploits the past two weeks, meaning Roy Helu will rack up 35 carries against the Bengals.

In regards to David Wilson, the rusher had ball security issues in college, so to see them manifest in Week 1 was disconcerting. Still, Wilson deserved a longer leash than the one he was given, and with Andre Brown tearing it up in Bradshaw’s absence last week, not sure he’s going to get a shot at redemption. If Brown is available in your league, drop Wilson to obtain the new New York back.

Gideon from Melbourne: Hey Joel, I'm from Australia so it is a bit hard to get a grasp of what is happening in Detroit: start Mikel LeShoure or Kevin Smith?

LeShoure has been a popular waiver-wire pick this week, yet Smith has been taking the first-team reps in practice. LeShoure’s presence hampers Smith’s ceiling, but Smith still has starter status in most fantasy formats. While I fathom why some owners may want to stash LeShoure on their roster, Smith is the only Detroit back that has value in the foreseeable future.

By the way, my articles are huge with the Aussies.

Hulk Hogan: After a great performance by the Seattle D against Dallas, are they worth a start against Green Bay, BROTHER??

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The Seahawks held opponents to 19.7 points per game last year, second-best in the conference, and are off to a strong start this season, surrendering just 27 points through two games. Factor in the Monday night theater to an already-raucous environment in the Emerald City, and it’s easy to see why Seattle seems like a practical play.

However, while the offense has stalled out of the gate, do you really want to bet against Aaron Rodgers? The Pack took on two of the tougher defenses in the NFL, so a date with the Seahawks will seem like cream cheese. While Seattle is a worthy unit for the rest of the season, sit them on your bench for Week 3.

Jason A. (@StraVltg): What should I do with Chris Johnson?

You pray, Jason. You pray.

You have to feel bad for the dude…unless you are an owner that harbored Johnson on your roster in 2011. In that case, the catastrophe is Christmas come early. However, unlike last season’s tribulation, one that was viewed as self-induced after missing training camp in a contract holdout, Johnson’s poor play thus far is more of a corollary to the Tennessee offensive linemen, who are doing their best Little Giants imitation through the first two games. Worse, the lack of a viable passing attack puts the defense’s onus on CJ2K. (And considering Johnson’s previous signal callers were Kerry Collins and Vince Young, think that says all you need to know about the inception of the Jake Locker Era.)

In PPR leagues, Johnson maintains value, as the porous line that hampers his ground capability also facilitates quick passes from Locker in the running back’s direction. Alas, fulfilling his first-round expectations looks like a pipe dream for Johnson proprietors.

Eryk-R5: Time to drop Michael Turner?

More like time to drop “The Burner” nickname, am I right?

Off-the-field issues aside, Turner owners should be troubled, as the cat has yet to display any semblance of explosiveness this season. Though Turner’s bulkiness can facilitate yards, that style is not conducive to Atlanta’s new up-temp attack. While I wouldn’t drop him just yet, Turner’s stretch as fantasy entity is nearing an end.

Tagged: Falcons, Bears, Lions, Titans, Patriots, Giants, Michael Turner, Wes Welker, Kevin Smith, Julian Edelman, Chris Johnson, Mikel Leshoure, David Wilson

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