Saturday, October 11, 2008

FDH Fantasy Newsletter: Volume I, Issue VI

Welcome to our sixth-ever edition of the FDH Fantasy Newsletter, as we continue to bring you weekly fantasy sports updates in addition to our usual content on In case you missed it, here are the previous issues:

^ Volume I, Issue I (September 4, 2008)
^ Volume I, Issue II (September 13, 2008)
^ Volume I, Issue III (September 19, 2008)
^ Volume I, Issue IV (September 27, 2008)
^ Volume I, Issue V (October 4, 2008)

In this week's edition:

^ NFL Week 6 game-by-game fantasy preview
^ NFL Week 6 top 5 waiver wire pickups
^ NBA overvalued and undervalued fantasy players for 2008-2009
^ A brand-new feature: The FDH New York Bureau Report

NFL Week 6

NOTE: Our advice, as it does on our FANTASYDRAFTHELP.COM INSIDER weekly program (Wednesdays, 7-9 PM EDT on, is based on helping you determine which of your marginal starters are worth a play this week. Hopefully, your initial draft/auction efforts were successful, because frankly, “playing the matchups” is far from an exact science regardless of what you will be told by other advisory services claiming to possess a crystal ball. But our weekly game notes are designed to try to help you maximize the potential of your situation. We will post this preface to the notes every week to remind you of the context of our advice. Also, each of our game previews links to the page for that game on, with statistical information and a video preview of each game.


(Byes: Buffalo, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Tennessee)

Chicago Bears at Atlanta Falcons 1:00 p.m. While both QBs are getting love in the media these days, neither is producing statistics in line with their "bottom line winning" achievements and neither is worth a look here. RB Forte is edging stronger every week towards "fantasy gimme" status and this isn't the week to yank him; while Turner is also moving towards that designation on the other side, it's not a great play for him and if you have a comparable player with a better matchup, take advantage of it. WR White is the other player in this game worth mentioning from a positive standpoint -- if he goes, so pay attention on Sunday morning to late reports.

Miami Dolphins at Houston Texans 1:00 p.m. Few borderline players look good in this one, but RB Williams is not a bad recommendation along with his "Wildcat partner" if you're hurting for back help this week. Counterpart Slaton should produce well on the other side, while neither QB looks ready to light it up here.

Baltimore Ravens at Indianapolis Colts 1:00 p.m. What a battle of contrasts in this game! WRs Harrison and Gonzalez are the only Colts you even think about benching these days and discretion would be the better part of valor in terms of deploying either of them. The Ravens' RB picture is muddled, but the safest play this week would be McClain, who has been a force on the goal line.

Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings 1:00 p.m. WR Williams still thinks he plays for a playoff-bound team. Isn't that precious? Regardless, he and WR Johnson should be in your lineup this week and the Viking O gets a rare "all in" recommendation -- assuming WRs Berrian and Rice will be good to go this week.

Oakland Raiders at New Orleans Saints 1:00 p.m. Eyeball the injured players up until game time here: WR Colston (more likely to play than not and once again an every-week gimme if he is back), RB McFadden (may or may not go, but a fantasy starter if he does) and RB Fargas (more likely to play than McFadden, but only worth a look if DMc does not go). Aside from that, New Orleans is all-in for this one, including whoever does start at both WR spots (Henderson looks likely to join Colston for now).

Cincinnati Bengals at N.Y. Jets 1:00 p.m. A game that would have been a good fantasy shootout has been negated by the fact that QB Palmer has been sitting out (although the "other QB Palmer," Carson's rookie brother, could come in if Fitzpatrick stinks up the joint again). As such, for the Bengals, beware anyone except the WRs, while the Jets are "all in," (if Coles is able to play) even though the Cincy pass defense has not been as pathetic as their counterparts up front.

Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1:00 p.m. Against a fairly tough run defense, stay away from both unpredictable parts of the Carolina RB platoon. WR Muhammad looks good here, QB Delhomme not so much. RB Graham and WR Bryant (in the continued absence of Galloway) are good plays.

St. Louis Rams at Washington Redskins 1:00 p.m. All-in for the Skins (even Randle El, who has been a modest producer and who we have urged you to bench in past weeks), while Jackson and Holt remain must-starts for the Rams. For Holt, though, who has been getting double-teamed all year, NFL may well stand for "Not For Long."

Jacksonville Jaguars at Denver Broncos 4:05 p.m. Aren't the Broncos due for a low-profile, under-the-radar ho-hum matchup without heavy implications for both teams? Just a random thought. Anyhoo, the entire backfield for the Jags (that's the QB and both RBs for you Steeler fans out there) should produce, while for Denver, injuries scramble the equation. RB Hall will play in place of Young and he's worth a play. WR Royal is iffy at best and his replacements are a big dropoff, so don't consider anyone else except gimmes Cutler and Marshall for the Broncos.

Dallas Cowboys at Arizona Cardinals 4:15 p.m. All-in (with Breaston in for Boldin)!

Philadelphia Eagles at San Francisco 49ers 4:15 p.m. Philly is all-in except for feeble Westbrook replacement Buckhalter, while the 49ers, who are starting to look "so last month!" are all-out on the marginal players (i.e. anyone not named Gore).

Green Bay Packers at Seattle Seahawks 4:15 p.m. The "Holmgren Bowl" is one of the hardest to decode this week. QB Rogers should play again, so count your Packers as all-in against the weak Hawk D, while RB Jones is the only high-percentage play for Seattle.

New England Patriots at San Diego Chargers 8:15 p.m. How much different did this game look at the beginning of the year when QB Brady was supposed to play? Regardless, this one remains all-in, as a shootout should still ensue.


N.Y. Giants at Cleveland Browns 8:30 p.m. In this prime-time mismatch, all-in for the G-Men (with WR Smith counting as WR#2) and all-out on the marginal players (i.e. everyone except Edwards, including the injured Winslow) for the Browns.

NFL Week 6 Top 5 waiver wire pickups

1. Domenik Hixon: We told you so! Well, we passed along what was said to us on our show by’s Giants Insider writer Ken Palmer, but it came via our microphones! He’s got a slight concussion, so he may be iffy for next week, and Plex Burress is back now, but now that Hixon made the most of his opportunity, you’ll be hearing more from him.

2. Mewelde Moore: It’s not as easy as just plugging anybody in the Steelers’ backfield and watching them go: Kevan Barlow already proved that, and that was when Alan Faneca was still suiting up in Pittsburgh. Now, after this performance against a tough Jags defense, Moore has proved that he can hold down the fort until Willie Parker returns and that he can take some of the heat off of Fast Willie once he is back.

3. Early Doucet: There was a time last fall when it was anticipated that Doucet would be a first-round pick and quite likely the first wide receiver drafted. He showed glimpses of that on Sunday. While Steve Breaston is likely to start in Anquan Boldin’s absence again in the next game, we now know that Doucet can produce even as a #3 receiver in that offense. Actually, if the Cardinals aren’t afraid they’d be killing Kurt Warner with insufficient pass protection, he could have the best four-deep receiving corps in the league if Ken Whisenhunt wants to give the spread some serious looks.

4. Greg Camarillo: Early Doucet took a gilded path to the NFL. Greg Camarillo did not. But this tough overachiever showed Sunday why he fits into the Fish offense so well by working with another smart player, Chad Pennington. You could certainly do worse in terms of your bench players.

5. Mike Walker: He’s got a sprained MCL, so he could be iffy for this game and maybe the next. But he’s worth a roll of the dice because he plays for a team that hasn’t had a legitimate weapon at wide receiver since the salad days of Jimmy Smith and his game against the Steelers was quite promising. He’s got the reputation of someone who can really produce if he stays healthy. Roll the dice on him and you could profit nicely.

NBA overvalued and undervalued fantasy players for 2008-2009
As has become tradition at FDH in 2008, we will be releasing our 2008 fantasy hoops guide as a free download in conjunction with our pals at Sportsology this week. As a sneak preview, here are the overvalued and undervalued players of this upcoming season -- with the working definition being players where we grossly disagree with the conventional wisdom on our "experts' draft board" (a composite of where several of our leading peers in the business rate these players).

NOTE: For whatever reason, only the guards this year have a ton of players out of whack in terms of public perception of production versus reality.

UNDERVALUED GUARDS: Allen, Calderon, B. Davis, Childress, Durant, B. Gordon, Granger, K. Martin, McGrady, M. Miller, T. Parker, Stojakovic

OVERVALUED GUARDS: Arenas, V. Carter, Ellis, Ginobili, Iguodala, Iverson, J. Johnson, Pierce, Roy, D. Williams





The FDH New York Bureau Report

By Steve Cirvello

EDITOR'S NOTE: As he did when he came in-studio for FDH programming back on April 27 of this year, our very valuable behind-the-scenes contributor Steve Cirvello "emerges from behind the curtain" to directly contribute his knowledge of the world of fantasy sports. A longtime producer for us in terms of guest booking and idea formatting for our programs, Steve will issue THE FDH NEW YORK BUREAU REPORT as a sort of newsletter-within-the-newsletter as often as he sees fit and we are pleased to add it for the benefit of our readers.

NYB's Sneaky Starts - Week #6
QB - Jason Campbell (WSH vs. Stl)
RB - LeRon McClain (BAL vs. Ind)
WR - Brandon Stokley (DEN vs. Jax)
TE - Anthony Fasano (MIA @ Hou)
K - Jason Elam (ATL vs. Chi)
D - N.Y. Jets (vs. Cin)

RED ALERT: (Player coming off injury who could make an impact)
Marques Colston - WR: The Saints host a Raiders team that is clearly in turmoil again this season. With Jeremy Shockey and David Patten most likely out of the lineup, Drew Brees and the offense get a big boost with the return of their top wideout. Lance Moore and Devery Henderson got into the fantasy scoring act over the last couple of weeks, but it will be interesting to see how soon Sean Payton waits to get the ball in Colston's hands at home and coming off just a horrendous loss last week to the Vikings.

Lookey Here: Team with favorable fantasy schedule over the next three weeks...

DALLAS COWBOYS (next 3 opponents)
^ Week #6: @ Arizona
^ Week #7: @ St. Louis
^ Week #8: vs. Tampa Bay
If the Cowboys want to go into their big Week #9 matchup at the New York Giants with momentum, they will need big games out of their top players, and their next three matchups are very winnable.

The Ricky-O Trio: (3 weekly Questions for our fantasy maven, FDH Managing Partner Rick Morris):
1) Can the Seahawks and their red cross offense, and much maligned Defense, put up some significant points this week at home against the Packers?

Don't count on it. Even in a highly winnable division, the injuries and inconsistency are rendering this such a lost year in Holmgren's alleged swan song campaign that he's likely to ask Jim Mora, Jr. for a "give-back" on his retirement. The Pack will be motivated coming off of last week's dump-job to Atlanta, so Seattle doesn't get a chance to turn around the offense here.

2) The Dolphins Defense has been quite stout against the run in recent weeks. How will Houston's Steve Slaton fare against them this week?

He'll do pretty well, and I am an admitted Dolphins honk, so I'm showing my objectivity here! At only 82.8 YPG allowed, Miami is proving tougher on the ground than anyone thought they would be, but Slaton can beat almost anyone in space. With Ahman Green back to take away at least some carries -- notwithstanding the fact that the fleet rookie has been one of the few bright spots for the Texans thus far -- you have to believe that Gary Kubiak is working on ways to get both backs on the field at the same time. Slaton in the slot would be extra-dangerous, so whether he's carrying from scrimmage or taking one in the flat, he'll be poised for some damage on my Fish this week.

3) Is the Cleveland Browns' season on the line Monday night at home against the Giants?

Well, we discussed my "1A" team, now we get to my "1" team, my hometown Browns. Realistically, the season was on the line Week 3 against Baltimore, the first team Cleveland should have been expected to beat, and they got destroyed. Week 4's "win that felt just like a loss" against the Palmer-less Bengals was pathetic and now they face an undefeated Super Bowl champion squad that, frankly, probably would overlook this game a bit if it kicked off at 1 PM on Sunday but won't make that mistake in prime time. Whether they realize it or not, this team is already playing for 2009, a season that won't include coach Crennel or QB DA. At this point, the Browns are the equivalent of any of the tanking Wall Street stocks that have no end in sight to the free fall. Fantasy owners who built around the Browns, considering their high-octane O in 2007, have to be finding other options in order to stay afloat. If you're a DA owner and it's not too late to handcuff him with Brady Quinn, do so posthaste.


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