Week 9. WOW! The fantasy football season is just flying by. Most leagues will be starting the playoffs in 5 short weeks. I sincerely hope that you are doing well. Let’s see if we can find some interesting choices during the bye week madness and through all of the injuries.
Running Back: Start ’em
Adrian Peterson (Washington Redskins)
Essentially, AP will be the lone running back this week. Chris Thompson is out with an injury. Kapri Bibbs is there. Remember before the season when he was cut? It doesn’t matter if Adrian Peterson WAS sharing carries, the Falcons are just miserable against the run. They let Peyton Barber run for 82 yards and get 24 more yards and a touchdown through the air. AP should be locked and loaded. He will be an RB1 in Week 9.
Duke Johnson (Cleveland Browns)
Freddie Kitchens is the new offensive coordinator in Cleveland. Guess what position he was promoted from? Running Backs coach! For the foreseeable future, I believe this Browns offense will put a heavier focus on the Running Backs.
But wait! There’s more! The Browns face off against the Chiefs! The Chiefs seem to be satisfied with standing aside while their opponents run past them. KC is allowing 127 yards per game on the ground; 7 touchdowns on the ground and 3 more to running backs through the passing game.
To top it off, the Browns are playing at home!
Nick Chubb will do just fine! My reason behind the Duke choice is because KC is going to win this game. The Browns will be playing from behind which means more work for the passing down back. Duke is fresh due to under-utilization this season. He will be put to work on Sunday.
Running Back: Sit ’em
Alex Collins (Baltimore Ravens)
The Ravens face the Steelers in Pittsburgh in a divisional matchup that has teeth. Both sides will be bringing their A game.
Pittsburgh has been relatively stingy against Running Backs this season allowing only 5 touchdowns to the position. Adding to the position misery for the Ravens, Alex Collins only had limited practice on Wednesday and sat out of Thursday’s practice. Yes, he practiced in full on Friday but Alex Collins is not the picture of health. Ty Montgomery has been added to the mix too. I’ll try to find my points elsewhere this week and you should too!
Dion Lewis/Derrick Henry (Tennessee Titans)
It’s redundant, but I had to include Derrick Henry just in case his absence confused people into thinking that I thought he would do well. He will not.
The Titans offense has not been productive. This week, they face the Cowboys who have been good at stopping the run.
Vegas has the over/under at 41 points. That is terribly low and I’m still taking the under. Tennessee is scoring just over 15 points per game. “Any Given Sunday” could rear it’s funny head, but this matchup promises to be a dull one filled with mediocre, at best, offensive players not named Ezekial Elliot. While we’re here, sit all of your Titans players until further notice. I’ll still be interested in this game because I’d like to see what the Cowboys do with Amari Cooper.
Tight End: Start ’em
David Njoku (Cleveland Browns)
Last week, we all believed in David Njoku. He did not see a single target despite playing in 83% of offensive snaps. It was such a great matchup! Maybe this was the reason that Todd Haley was shown the door. (That’s a joke, folks.)
This week, they’re facing the Chiefs. Remember above, where I talked about Freddie Kitchens being the RB coach before his promotion to offensive coordinator? Guess what he was before being an RB coach. Hopefully, you see where I’m going: Tight Ends Coach!! David Njoku will have a great game in a great matchup.
One other note. In 2016, Baker Mayfield and Pat Mahomes faced off in an offensive masterpiece of a game. In the end, the two QBs combined for 1279 yards and 12 touchdowns through the air, 104 rushing yards and 2 touchdowns. If you look at the box score, you’ll see names like Joe Mixon, Dede Westbrook, and Keke Coutee. It was a College Football classic! I’m not suggesting that we’ll see a repeat. But, these two players sure know how to make football look fun!
Greg Olsen (Carolina Panthers)
I know, this one reeks of the “no brainer” territory. With Gronk’s regression/injuries, we’re down to Kelce and Ertz with the rest of the TE position going into a barf bucket. Not so fast! I think we have found the replacement in the top 3. Greg Olsen has returned from injury with a solid floor for targets and a big smile in the red zone. This week, we will all be smiling as the Panthers face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs give up almost 14 points per game to the Tight End position (0.5 PPR format).
Tight End: Sit ’em
Ed Dickson (Seattle Seahawks)
Since the Tight End position is a cesspool of muck and dread, you might have seen the sparkling clean Ed Dickson return from injury and score a touchdown in week 8. Folks, he had 2 targets. He scored a touchdown on a 42 yard catch with one of them. I’ll be the first to admit that I could be wrong. This position consistently smacks me in the face. Ed Dickson, the 2 targets, and an opposing defense (L.A. Chargers) who is usually good against the Tight End position when your name isn’t George Kittle equals a bad week. Don’t chase the touchdown from week 8!
Good luck to each of you in week 9! Unless you’re facing me. In that case, I hope your local high school football team won their district championship game last night. While you’re busy celebrating, Oops! I forgot to set my lineups!