Friday, November 21, 2008

FDH Fantasy Newsletter: Volume I, Issue XII

Welcome to our twelfth 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)

^ Volume I, Issue VI (October 11, 2008)

^ Volume I, Issue VII (October 18, 2008)

^ Volume I, Issue VIII (October 25, 2008)

^ Volume I, Issue IX (November 1, 2008)

^ Volume I, Issue X (November 8, 2008)

^ Volume I, Issue XI (November 15, 2008)

In this week's edition:

^ NFL Week 12 game-by-game fantasy preview
^ NFL Week 12 top 5 waiver wire pickups

^ FDH New York Bureau Report

NFL Week 12

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.

In addition, every week right here we will provide you a link to your ultimate Sunday morning last-minute news source: Google News. Although any updates from responsible news providers are very useful, pay particular attention to those who come from team beat reporters, because they are closest to the action.


Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons 4:15 p.m. For the Panthers, make it a qualified all-in – 2 RBs worth starting in lieu of a TE. Atlanta has gimme starters at RB and WR (although you need to monitor White’s injury status) with QB Ryan a “sometimes guy.” He’s not a great start here, but he could give you middling production if you’re willing to settle for it this week at that position.

Philadelphia Eagles at Baltimore Ravens 1:00 p.m. WR Jackson is your only decent-percentage play for the Eagles along with the automatic starts at QB and RB (presuming Westbrook is good to go; don’t trust Buckhalter if he’s not). Stay away from all Ravens this week.

Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns 1:00 p.m. Due mainly to horrible defensive play (exemplified by Cleveland’s “tackling”), make this an all-in game notwithstanding weather that may be imperfect and notwithstanding QB Quinn’s finger issue (feel free to play TE Heiden if Winslow is not good to go).

San Francisco 49ers at Dallas Cowboys 1:00 p.m. Dallas is all-in, whereas only usual suspect RB Gore and occasional play Hill at QB look good for San Fran.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Detroit Lions 1:00 p.m. The Lions are all-out, and are until further notice. For Tampa, it’s a bit of a throwback week, as RB Dunn and WR Galloway join QB Garcia and WR Bryant among the start-worthy.

Minnesota Vikings at Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 p.m. Not much different than usual for these teams. WR Berrian is worth a look for Minnesota along with the no-brainer choice at RB. For Jacksonville, you’d normally bench an RB against the Vikes, so RB Taylor isn’t a great call, but RB Jones-Drew is worthwhile for his additional utility in the passing game. WR Jones should play and he should be a good call along with QB Garrard, since the usual game plan against Minnesota is to air it out in lieu of the run.

Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs 1:00 p.m. QB Edwards should have the get-well game he needs to pull out of his (and the team’s) slump. For the Chiefs, there’s more good options now than there’s been all year as the locks at WR1 and TE are joined by RB Johnson and maybe even surprising QB Thigpen as worth your consideration.

New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins 1:00 p.m. With The Hoodie gearing up to stop the Wildcat, quit while you’re ahead with RB Williams and place your faith instead on QB Pennington along with the obvious play in RB Brown. Avoid the Pats’ RB quagmire altogether and go instead with the QB/WR1/WR2 combo platter.

Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams 1:00 p.m. Speaking of QB/WR1/WR2, Bulger’s desperation to keep his job (and the Bears’ clamp-down against the run) makes the Rams compelling at those positions. QB Orton and the gimme of RB Forte could well be joined by RB Jones as a viable deep-sleeper option inasmuch as Chicago may be looking to reduce the load on the rookie and St. Louis is brutal against the run (158.4 YPG surrendered).

N.Y. Jets at Tennessee Titans 1:00 p.m. RB Jones is too hot to bench, even against an ace front seven like Tennessee’s. This is actually an all-in game for the Jets, which may seem counterintuitive given the matchup, but they come in very well-rested. The Titans may be chucking a bit more than usual, so take a look at emerging WR Gage along with the usuals (both RBs and TE).

Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos 4:05 p.m. Only RB McFadden matters for Oaktown. A nice matchup for RB Hillis gives Denver the all-in recommendation.

N.Y. Giants at Arizona Cardinals 4:15 p.m. Except for Arizona TE, this one’s all-in!

Washington Redskins at Seattle Seahawks 4:15 p.m. The Skins are all-in except for WR2, with Sweet Shaun Alexander poised to run big given the opportunity coincidentally against his old team. Don’t touch any Hawks with a 10-foot stick this week.

Indianapolis Colts at San Diego Chargers 8:15 p.m. All-in – with three WRs poised for productivity for the Colts!


Green Bay Packers at New Orleans Saints 8:30 p.m. Prime time is explosive this week! All-in on both sides, with RB Thomas getting the call for the Saints.

NFL Week 12 top 5 waiver wire pickups

1. Kenneth Darby: With Steven Jackson hurt, he’s first in line to replace him for the time being and he has been very productive when given the chance.

2. Antonio Pittman: Speaking of Rams, we’ve recommended him before and still he is not over 40% of ownership in CBS leagues. His hammy is not 100%, which is why he’s behind Darby at the moment, but he’s got enough upside to matter if he gets some touches.

3. Pierre Thomas: The Deuce might not even have to get suspended to be eclipsed by La Pierre in Reggie Bush’s absence. Thomas is showing surprising productivity and is another repeat member on this list who still is not above 40% ownership in CBS leagues.

4. Deion Branch: When healthy, he can certainly produce, but therein lies the rub. Fortunately, he’s healthy – for the moment.

5. Jerome Harrison: He still can’t block, which is why Romeo Crennel inexplicably buries him. But he’s explosive in space, as he proved yet again Monday night, and a weapon like this is too tantalizing to remain largely sheathed for a team as desperate as Cleveland.

FDH New York Bureau Report

By Steve Cirvello

NYB's Sneaky Starts Week #12

QB: Aaron Rodgers (GB vs. NO)

RB: Jonathan Stewart (CAR vs. ATL)

WR: Justin Gage (TEN vs. NYJ)

TE: Kevin Boss (NYG vs. ARZ)

K: Josh Scobee (JAX vs. MIN)

DEF: New England (vs. MIA)

RED ALERT (Player coming off injury that could have fantasy impact):

MATT JONES - WR: At 4-6, the Jaguars should have their top wideout back in the lineup in a game that their season is riding on. No other receiver was able to step up in last week's lost to Tennessee, and David Garrard will be forced to throw often if the Vikings are able to bottle up Maurice Jones-Drew and Fred Taylor on the ground.

LOOKEY HERE (team with favorable fantasy schedule the next three weeks):


Week #12 - at KC

Week #13 - vs SF

Week #14 - vs MIA

The Bills fell short at home on Monday Night against the Browns to drop back to .500 after starting 5-1. The next three weeks give them a golden opportunity to keep pace in the much improved AFC East. Two wins over the Chiefs and Niners would make them 7-5, which would then set up a surprisingly meaningful game against Dolphins at home. The Bills have already lost to every team in their division, so a playoff berth could be riding on the outcome of this one.

The Ricky-O Trio (3 questions for FDH Managing Partner Rick Morris):

1 - With both the Cowboys and Jets having big games this week, which tight end gets the start between Jason Witten and red-hot rookie Dustin Keller?

Witten’s close to being reasonably healthy, so while it’s OK to start either (yes, even though Keller is going against the Titans!), I can’t argue against track record and matchups.

2 - The Colts face the Chargers this week, which defense figures to have the better game?

Well, neither one is going to do much! The Chargers’ desperation against the Colts’ thirst for revenge from last year’s playoffs – that’s a wash. Ultimately, in the end, the momentum of Indy will carry them to a win, which means more points, which means that the Colt defense will be “less bad” than the Chargers!

3 - Who would get the nod this week between Jeff Garcia, Matt Hasselbeck and Gus Frerotte?

Great, an easy one! Garcia’s my only recommended play of the bunch if for no other reason than matchups alone.


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