As I’ve said in the past, the term “Bust” is relative. You’ll notice a big name here and there and it’s not because I think that player will perform miserably. However there may be instances where a player may not meet the lofty expectations set forth on any given week. For instance, if Texans RB Arian Foster had 14 carries for 40 yards and a touchdown, would you say Foster met expectations? While they are viable fantasy numbers in some circles, more was and should have been expected from a player selected in the top five in most drafts across the country. If those very same numbers were produced by say Green Bay Packer RB Alex Smith, you’d look at it quite differently.
But those type numbers for someone like Foster yell BUST to me, but take that moniker with a grain of salt, when looking at the player. Don’t be silly. It’s all about bringing attention to temper enthusiasm from week to week in different situations!
Let’s take a look!
QB Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals – No one can take anything away from Dalton, he’s been a consistent performer so far in 2012, putting up outstanding fantasy numbers. But the Steelers are by far the more desperate team and that makes them even more dangerous. Look for a pedestrian effort from the Bengals signal caller this weekend as the Steelers swarm early and often in this AFC North matchup.
QB Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions – Even if the Chicago Bears defense wasn’t of the upper echelon of the NFL, all they would have to do if watch the Lions game last week against the Philadelphia Eagles. Use the first half as a tutorial of what to do, and take the second half and subsequent over time as a testament of what NOT to do. Expect a well-rested and healthy Bears defense to pressure Stafford all night long.
RB Shonn Green, New York Jets – All of a sudden the much-maligned, king of the three-yard per carry average is all the rage on the wire after his explosive three touchdown performance against the Indianapolis Colts. This is a very fickle hobby, if you aren’t already aware. If you are expecting a repeat performance or even 50% of last week’s output you’ll be incredibly disappointed. If you don’t think an annoyed New England Patriots team playing at home after a loss won’t contain this beacon of rushing mediocrity you are kidding yourself.
RB Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens – Like I mentioned above, this is one of those studs who I feel may fall well below expectations this weekend. Take away last week’s embarrassment at the hands of the Packers, and realize Houston is still one of the top defensive teams in the league particularly against the run. Expect them to be fired up at home, and could keep Rice’s effectiveness to a minimum.
RB Mikel LeShoure, Detroit Lions – The Lions pulled a rabbit out their hats late last week against the Eagles, but against a Chicago Bears defense only giving up 66 rushing yards per game so far in 2012, no hat and no rabbits this week. If you have other options at RB this would probably be the week to go that route. The excitement of having a player going during the MNF game is always intriguing, save the intrigue for another week.
WR James Jones, Green Bay Packers – I know what you are thinking, cake walk, right? Don’t underestimate the Rams defense. While they might not win, things won’t be as easy for the Packers receivers as many may think. They are only surrendering just over 200 yards passing per game in 2012 and have been much more competitive under Head Coach Jeff Fisher. Look for Jones and even WR Jordy Nelson to struggle just a wee bit.
WR Andre Roberts, Arizona Cardinals – The uncertainty at quarterback coupled with facing an irritated Minnesota Vikings team under the dome is not exactly the recipe for a solid outing from Roberts. He’s been undeniably solid so far this season, but the luster has dimmed since his week four breakout game against Miami. He’ll better last week’s numbers, but not by much.
WR Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers– Clearly the best receiving option on the Panthers, Smith will command plenty of attention from a Dallas defensive unit giving up only 182 passing yards per game. Smith could find the going rough as these two frustrated teams meet on Sunday. Dallas CB Brandon Carr has struggled,
but after last week’s debacle against the Ravens, Carr will likely draw Smith and should be up to the task.
TE Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints – While Graham is expected to play this week against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the ankle is obviously quite bothersome to him. He is a guy you never truly can sit down unless you have another solid option to back him up, but until he is 100%, his production undoubtedly will suffer.
TE Dennis Pitta, Baltimore Ravens – It’s interesting how quickly things change, especially in the wacky world that is fantasy football. Since busting out of the gate this season with numbers that had the fantasy community bristling, Pitta has regressed a bit and moved back into the pack in regards to fantasy viable tight ends. I wouldn’t look for a change in momentum this week against the Texans.
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