Wondering whether or not to start Matt Ryan and Doug Martin, or to bench Christian Ponder and Arrelious Benn? Anyone can give you that kind of advice. If you’re looking for help with your real starting lineup conundrums, read on.
Here are my picks to roll, and get rolled, in Week 10.
Watch ’em roll
Matthew Stafford, QB, Lions at Vikings. He has performed well over the past two games, and Mikel Leshoure is unlikely to steal all the scoring fun two weeks in a row. Stafford has a solid track record against Minnesota, which has allowed Russell Wilson and Josh Freeman each to throw three TD passes and no INTs over the past two games.
Stevan Ridley, RB, Patriots vs. Bills. Brandon Bolden burst on to the scene the last time these teams met, but he has since faded. Shane Vereen found the spotlight before the team’s bye; but the constant throughout has been Ridley, who should continue to flourish against Buffalo’s pathetic rush defense.
Isaac Redman, RB, Steelers vs. Chiefs. Jonathan Dwyer is expected to return, and he will surely eat into the veteran’s carries. But Redman is still higher on the depth chart, and he is the most likely candidate to stay “on a roll” after last weekend’s stellar performance against the Giants. Moreover, the woeful Chiefs could allow both backs to prosper on Monday night.
Brian Hartline, WR, Dolphins vs. Titans. He got back on track with Ryan Tannehill last week, and now the duo draws a Tennessee secondary that has surrendered the most passing scores in the league (20). Hartline is a good bet to top 100 yards and find the end zone at least once in this mismatch.
Malcom Floyd, WR, Chargers at Buccaneers. Robert Meachem is untrustworthy and Danario Alexander is still figuring out the offense. That makes Floyd and Antonio Gates the best candidates for fantasy heroism against the league’s worst pass defense.
More thumbs up (excluding the no-brainers): QBs Tannehill, Ben Roethlisberger, Josh Freeman, Philip Rivers; RBs Michael Turner, Mikel Leshoure, Reggie Bush, Frank Gore, Willis McGahee; WRs Michael Crabtree, Stevie Johnson, Miles Austin, Emmanuel Sanders, Demaryius Thomas.
Roll ’em back
Matt Schaub, QB, Texans at Bears. Schaub is on a solid two-game roll, but the road gets tougher against Chicago. This game could turn into a defensive slugfest, with little excitement for either team’s passing attack.
Steven Jackson, RB, Rams at 49ers. No longer the workhorse, Jackson heads into a bad matchup with the 49ers splitting the load with explosive rookie Daryl Richardson. Even before he was sharing carries, Jackson hadn’t scored against San Francisco since 2010.
Ryan Mathews, RB, Chargers at Buccaneers. Tampa Bay boasts the stingiest run defense in the land, and Mathews has been just so-so against weaker competition. He is a bad bet to score his second TD of the season this weekend.
Hakeem Nicks, WR, Giants at Bengals. Eli Manning is in a four-game funk and Nicks won’t practice all week because of swelling in his knee (again). Nicks could come down to a game-time decision, but he isn’t worth the risk even if he plays.
Dwayne Bowe, WR, Chiefs at Steelers. Though he will surely get his fair share of targets, Bowe will be facing the league’s most formidable pass defense on the road. Matt Cassel doesn’t stand a chance against a unit that has shut down Eli Manning and Robert Griffin III in consecutive weeks.
More thumbs down: QBs Michael Vick, Jay Cutler, Cam Newton, Andy Dalton, Jake Locker, Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez; RBs BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Felix Jones, Shonn Greene, DeAngelo Williams; WRs Danny Amendola, Sidney Rice, Brandon Gibson, DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Kerley.
TAKING A FLIER
Taiwan Jones, RB, Raiders at Ravens. Jones is the ultimate flier this week, given the ankle injuries to Darren McFadden and primary backup Mike Goodson. Fullback Marcel Reece is a better receiver than runner, leaving Jones as the more likely ball-carrier.
Don’t be the bonehead who … gambles on a Vikings wideout not named Percy Harvin. Neither Michael Jenkins nor Jerome Simpson can overcome the deficiencies of a Ponder-led offense, and Harvin (sprained ankle) is unlikely to play.