Thursday, September 6, 2012

2012 Week 1 Fantasy Advice

I was going to post this yesterday, but other circumstances dictated that I couldn't. For future reference, all of these columns will be posted on Wednesday's from now on, except in the last 2 weeks of the season. With that out of the way, let's get to the actual fantasy help you all come to this blog so often for:

Who to Start:

QB Matt Ryan (ATL) vs. KC: He should have a great year under new offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, whose scheme fits Ryan's style of play better than Mike Mularkey's did. Kansas City's secondary has some turnover from a year ago, even though safety Eric Berry is returning from injury. Ryan could have a big game here.

RB Rashad Jennings (JAX) vs. MIN: I wouldn't call him a sleeper due to all of the MJD talk, but Jennings is a very viable option this week against Minnesota. Their defense is sketchy up the middle, and Jennings should see the bulk of the workload with MJD being eased back into the lineup.

WR Torrey Smith (BAL) vs. CIN MON: He might be one of the fastest players in the NFL, and can get by any corner with relative easy on a go route. The Bengals secondary is either older, or inexperienced, so look for Smith to have a big game on Monday night.

WR Malcolm Floyd (SD) vs. OAK MON: The Raiders entire secondary from 2011 has turned over into the new season, and the Chargers will come out throwing with their issues at the running back position. Floyd is the best of an average group of receivers, so he is the one to start this week.

TE Fred Davis (WSH) vs. NO: I usually recommend tight ends who have rookie QB's starting for them, and Davis is no exception. The safety blanket factor for RG3 is a major one here, and Davis has very good ability too. It helps that the Saints defense is usually pretty bad, too.

DEF Philadelphia vs. CLE: It's the Browns lethargic offense with a rookie QB starting, going up against one of the best secondaries in all of football. It couldn't be this obvious... could it?

Who to Sit:

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ) vs. BUF: I don't know why, after this preseason, you'd want to start him anyway, but in the out-of-the-ordinary circumstance that you might want to, you shouldn't. Buffalo's defense is very good up front, and there is that guy who wears number 15 hanging around...

RB Reggie Bush (MIA) vs. HOU: The Dolphins are going to have major struggles everywhere on the offensive side of the ball, but running will be especially tough this week against the very stout Texans defense. It won't help that there is no threat on the outside, either.

WR Mike Wallace (PIT) vs. DEN: He likely will start off slowly after his long holdout for the Steelers, and it's not good to remind him that Champ Bailey shut him down for only 3 catches in the playoff game back in January.

WR Stevie Johnson (BUF) vs. NYJ: I'm not putting him here because he's going up against that guy named Revis. I'm putting him here because of a groin injury that will hamper him when he plays on Sunday. He will lose some of that burst that allows him to escape coverages.

TE Jared Cook (TEN) vs. NE: He has the hype machine all over him this season, but he might struggle at the start of the season against the Patriots, who surprisingly only allowed 3 touchdowns to opposing Tight Ends last season.

DEF San Francisco vs. GB: Even though this is one of the better defenses in football, you don't need to think very long to understand why I would recommend benching them this weekend.

3 Super Sleepers:

QB Josh Freeman (TB) vs. CAR: The Panthers defense last year was a sieve, mainly due to all of their injuries, but even when they are healthy, I think Freeman could have a big game against them due to his new weapons and help from the ground game.

WR Percy Harvin (MIN) vs. JAX: His explosiveness should help out Christian Ponder against a better than advertised Jags D, and he does have a knack to play better in games when Adrian Peterson either struggles or isn't doing very much.

TE Brent Celek (PHI) vs. CLE: With the Browns likely being able to take away Jackson and Maclin on the outside, Mike Vick will have to look to the interior of the defense for yards, and Brent Celek has seen a resurgence of late in his form.

Buyer Beware:

Any rookie starting QB: All of them have matchups that are either tough, or they are on the road this weekend, so starting any of them is a major risk. I wouldn't start any of them until they can prove something in these tough environments.

Good Luck in Week 1!

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