Harmon's waiver review
The preliminary bouts are done. You’re no longer wrestling
with owners who still have
Chris Cooley or
Owen Daniels in an active tight end slot. You’re no
longer playing against owners who won’t bench a player
because of the logo on his helmet. It’s playoff time.
Fantasy owners who have survived the war of attrition and have made it to this level are scouring the wire to steal every last point. No stones will be left unturned. I’ll be curious to monitor roster activity to see how many former fantasy heroes, such as a Jason Witten or teammate Marion Barber, will be left on benches this weekend as the playoffs kick into high-gear.
What’s your thinking? Let’s delve into this week’s Baker’s Dozen piece and start by tossing out a few new additions to the fantasy scene for this week’s high-pressure activities. Will the rookie running backs help bring fantasy gold?
Arian Foster, RB, HOU
Chris Brown ripped your hearts out in Week 13 with an interception toss from the five-yard line. He and Ryan Moats have also had trouble impressing Gary Kubiak while putting the ball on the carpet. Therefore, the rookie from Tennessee is likely to see the lion’s care of the workload this weekend against the pathetic St. Louis run defense. Foster carried the ball 13 times for 34 yards while adding four receptions for 54 yards in the blowout win over Seattle.
Maurice Morris, RB, DET
Coach Jim Schwartz confirmed that Kevin Smith’s been lost for the final three games because of a knee injury sustained in Week 14. As a result, longtime NFL backup Maurice Morris will lead a timeshare for the Lions, ceding some of the workload to rookie Aaron Brown. Morris produced five touches for 20 yards in the blowout loss to Baltimore. If I were a betting man or a desperate eighth seed looking for a “Hail Mary” play against Arizona, I’d make a run at Brown. The Lions know what they have in Morris and need to evaluate Brown before the 2010 combine and roster decisions in advance of Smith’s eventual return to action.
Quinton Ganther, RB, WAS
Ganther stepped into the lead role for the Redskins, the fourth player to do so, and produced a strong effort against the Raiders. He rolled to 50 rushing yards on the ground with two short touchdowns and caught three passes for 43 yards. Rock Cartwright was relegated to the role of bystander in Week 14, and I don’t expect much more of him this week.
Chris Jennings, RB, CLE
I had envisioned Jennings becoming the lead option in Cleveland in Week 13, but we watched Jerome Harrison produce a top-notch effort instead. Jennings got his chance in Week 14, and he posted a season-high 20 carries for 73 yards and a touchdown against the stout Pittsburgh defense. The Chiefs rank 28th in the league against the run and surrender 148.1 rushing yards and a touchdown per game.
Jason Campbell, QB, WAS
Campbell’s been more comfortable and fluid in the pocket in recent weeks. He’s registered three consecutive multi-touchdown games and has passed for at least 222 yards in four straight starts. I’m definitely encouraged by the progress of this offense and the development of both Devin Thomas and Fred Davis. Both will play huge roles this weekend. Let’s face it, this isn’t your father’s (or your brother’s) Giant defense. Anybody who watched Sunday’s debacle against Philadelphia had to leave shaking their heads. The season finale of “Dexter” wasn’t as horrific as that performance.
Alex Smith, QB, SF
Smith didn’t dominate the Arizona defense, as the 49ers worked a balanced offense and ran effectively with Frank Gore and Glen Coffee. He did take advantage of the wealth of turnovers to record his sixth multi-touchdown effort in eight appearances this season. This weekend’s matchup certainly isn’t a layup, as Philly can bring the heat. However, the Eagles secondary has been susceptible to big plays (218.6 yards and 1.62 touchdowns per game), putting the onus square on the San Francisco offensive line.
Kenny Britt, WR, TEN
Britt saw his three-game scoring streak ended in Week 14 by the Rams, but the talented rookie did haul in two receptions for 75 yards. It was his fifth consecutive game with at least two receptions. He’s on the radar this weekend for a possible start against the Miami pass defense (233.6 yard and 1.1 touchdowns per game). He obviously had a fabulous rapport with Vince Young, but the downfield threat could see more targets if Kerry Collins is elevated to a starting role for this highly important matchup.
Greg Camarillo, WR, MIA
Camarillo posted his best game of the season, a seven-reception, 110-yard effort in the Week 14 win over Jacksonville. It was his second straight solid effort (four catches for 61 yards in Week 13), and I expect to see him on the radar as a solid PPR contributor this weekend. Davone Bess injured his ankle in Week 14, and his status for this weekend’s tilt with Tennessee is unknown. Camarillo isn’t going to post many huge plays, but he can aggregate a nice, consistent effort and tally both receptions and yardage.
Antonio Bryant, WR, TB
As expected, Bryant was shut down in Week 14 by Darrelle Revis in the Buccaneers’ blowout loss to the Jets. His matchup is much better this weekend against a soft Seattle pass defense, even with Marcus Trufant back in the mix. Bryant had averaged 3.7 receptions and 82.3 yards in the three games prior to his battle with Revis. He’s definitely worthy of a look-see at the third receiver slot in deeper leagues.
Johnny Knox, WR, CHI
Knox stepped back into the forefront of the Chicago offense with Devin Hester sidelined by a calf injury. He caught five passes for 83 yards against the Packers and scored for the second time in three weeks. He’s caught multiple passes in all but two games this season while averaging 38.3 yards per game (five receiving touchdowns). Devin Aromashodu was impressive during training camp and finally got a shot as a downfield option against Green Bay. He caught eight passes for 76 yards and a touchdown in the Week 14 contest and represents an intriguing deep sleeper option against Baltimore. He stands 6-foot-3 and has the ability to out-leap defenders. Why not see what he can do if you’re the outgoing offensive gurus in Chicago?
Fred Davis, TE, WAS
Davis has been an absolute red zone monster the past three weeks. He owns a three-game scoring streak (four total touchdowns) and has averaged four receptions and 46.3 yards with five touchdowns since taking over for the injured Chris Cooley. He’s become a go-to receiver for Jason Campbell (see above) and has helped jumpstart this offense in recent weeks.
Kevin Boss, TE, NYG
As expected, Boss excelled against the Philly pass defense in Week 14, a unit that’s been very generous to opposing tight ends this season. It was a nice rebound from the two quiet games that followed a three-game scoring streak. He’s averaged 3.3 receptions and 42.9 yards in the past seven games with five touchdowns. He caught three passes for 62 yards in the Week 1 matchup against Washington.
What else can you say? The Texans are the latest team to get their shot at the putrid St. Louis offense, and we’re at the point where Steven Jackson may not be much of a factor because of his mounting injury woes. The Rams have scored an average of 11.2 points per game, have allowed 29 sacks and committed 25 turnovers. If rookie Keith Null remains under center, Houston may help propel more than a few fantasy owners into title contention.