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October 22, 2009
by Tanner Munroe
Each week Studs & Duds will take a look at the best and worst match-ups from around the NFL and choose four players that could mean the difference between fantasy success and failure.
Based on the scoring system established by Yahoo!’s Flames and Lames, Studs and Duds hit rock bottom in week six. After getting just one of out eight picks correct last week, S&D’s season record now stands at 24-24. Do you have some of your own Studs and Duds in mind? If so, put your picks and predictions (no explanation for picks necessary) in the comment section below and see if you can beat us at our own game.
Matt Ryan / QB / Atlanta Falcons - (vs. Cowboys) Ryan has put up solid numbers so far this year, but for some reason is still undervalued by plenty of fantasy owners. Week seven should be the turning point though, as his match-up against the Cowboys will likely cement his status as a must-start the rest of the season. Dallas allows over 251 passing ypg, and has looked terrible defending the pass this year. With the excellent receiving options that Ryan has –Tony Gonzalez, Roddy White – it’s not hard to imagine a huge game from the young QB.
Prediction: 20-34, 265 passing yards, 2 total touchdowns, 0 interceptions, 5 rushing yards
Steve Smith / WR / New York Giants - (vs. Cardinals) The Giants are coming off their first loss of the season last week, so it won’t be surprising if they give home fans something to cheer about by crushing the Cardinals. Arizona currently has the best rush D in the league to go along with the second to worst pass D. That should lead to the G-Men sticking to the air game for most of the day. If that’s the case, then Smith owners will be handsomely rewarded for sticking with their guy after a very shaky past two weeks. With Smith being one of Eli Manning’s favorite targets this year, a monster game may be in order as the Giants look to reestablish themselves as one of the top teams in the NFL.
Prediction: 7 receptions, 101 receiving yards, 1 touchdown
Joseph Addai / RB / Indianapolis Colts - (vs. Rams) Addai has been somewhat of an enigma so far this season. He has run well and seems to be healthy, but has yet to recapture the game-breaking ability that saw him become a top fantasy RB in years past. One of the main reasons contributing to his early mediocrity is backup Donald Brown stealing around 10 carries a game from him. However, this week could help propel him back into the hearts of fantasy owners. Indy is coming off their bye week, so Addai should be 100% healthy against the Rams. St. Louis has the 26th ranked rush D, so there will be plenty of carries to go around as the Colts should win this game with ease. You can expect Addai to receive around 20 carries, which could easily lead to him surpassing the century mark for the first time this year.
Prediction: 22 carries, 123 rushing yards, 5 receptions, 32 receiving yards, 2 total touchdowns
Chris Cooley / TE / Washington Redskins - (vs. Eagles) Cooley has become one of the more consistent TE’s in fantasy football the last few years, even though he plays for a team with tons of problems on offense. Other than a goose egg in week five, Cooley has managed to put up decent receiving yards in every game this season. Although he’s only found the end-zone twice in ’09, his week seven match-up against Philly should lead to a monster day for the TE. Just looking at what Zach Miller and the Raiders were able to do last week against the Eagles is evidence enough that the odds of a strong game from Cooley are likely. If you need more convincing, then perhaps the fact that Philly gives up almost 11 fantasy points per game to opposing TE's will do the trick. Either way, if you have Cooley or can get him, now is the time.
Prediction: 6 receptions, 72 yards, 1 touchdown
Donovan McNabb / QB / Philadelphia Eagles - (vs. Redskins) Despite throwing for almost 270 yards during last weeks loss to the Raiders, McNabb failed to put up decent fantasy numbers. If he can struggle that badly against the league's 16th ranked pass D, then it’s hard to imagine him getting better in week seven against Washington and their third ranked pass defense.
Prediction: 14-34, 163 passing yards, 0 touchdowns, 1 interception, 17 rushing yards
Terrell Owens / WR / Buffalo Bills - (vs. Panthers) It’s official. Owens is by far the biggest bust of the year. He has just 15 receptions and one touchdown in six games this season, and it may be about time for his owners to jump ship while they still can. Buffalo plays Carolina this week, and that is terrible news for any T.O. owners hoping he’d turn it around soon. Not only do the Panthers have the second ranked pass D in the NFL, but it looks like the Bills could also be without their starting QB Trent Edwards. If that’s the case, then Buffalo will likely stick with a run-heavy offensive plan, and Owens will once again be a non-factor in fantasy match-ups.
Prediction: 2 receptions, 17 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Brandon Jacobs / RB / New York Giants - (vs. Cardinals) As mentioned above, the Cardinals have the top rush defense in the NFL, which isn’t good for Jacobs owners. With the Giants likely to stick to the passing game, Jacobs stands to suffer considerably from a fantasy standpoint. To add to his troubles, RB Ahmad Bradshaw will likely steal at least a third of the carries. If you have another running back you can play over him, you’ll definitely want to do that. Otherwise, you may have to bite the bullet on what is sure to be a tough week for the Giants RB.
Prediction: 14 carries, 49 rushing yards, 1 reception, 8 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Zach Miller / TE / Oakland Raiders - (vs. Jets) Miller put up monster numbers in last weeks win against the Eagles. Although plenty of owners rushed out to grab him thinking that perhaps the Raider offense would finally come alive, the truth is it won’t. Through six games the Jets have only allowed four passing touchdowns, and that number will likely remain the same during week seven. The reality is that Raiders QB JaMarcus Russell is terrible and until the Oakland organization makes a change at the position, there won’t be any sort of consistency from any of the team’s offensive players.
Prediction: 3 receptions, 26 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns