With another exciting week in the NFL with injuries galore and bye weeks a-blazin’, lets jump right into things:
↑ Visanthe Shiancoe, TE, Minnesota Vikings
Shiancoe has been somewhat of a forgotten man in Minnesota the past two seasons as he has missed a quarterback to consistently deliver him the ball. Brett Favre’s first year in the Twin Cities was when Shiancoe fully realized his potential and became a red zone monster. But with poor play from pretty much everyone on the Vikes last year and a washed up Donovan McNabb for much of this year, Shiancoe hasn’t been getting consistent targets.
Christian Ponder has already shown he is a better choice than McNabb this year, and thus far, Shiancoe is his favorite target. Ponder has targeted Shiancoe 15 times during the past two games, and Visanthe caught a touchdown in last week’s loss to Green Bay. I think this will become a trend, and Shiancoe may turn back into a solid fantasy starter.
↑ Seahawks D/ST
This is one of the most underrated groups in the NFL. While the secondary is hurting with the loss of veteran corner Marcus Trufant for the season, other players have stepped up nicely. The secondary’s new leader is second-year safety Earl Thomas who has been lights out thus far, and with other guys like the hard-hitting safety Kam Chancellor and the tallest cornerback in the NFL Brandon Browner (6-foot-4) beginning to finally step up this season, the secondary may not be as bad as people think.
The run defense is one of the best in the NFL thanks to linemen like Alan Branch, and the freakishly athletic 330-pounder Red Bryant along with linebackers David Hawthorne, Leroy Hill and standout rookie K.J. Wright. They also have one of the most underrated pass rushers in the league in defensive end Chris Clemons. While this isn’t a group you want to start week-in and week-out, there are definitely some favorable matchups on the horizon such as this Sunday against the Bengals. So if you need a defense, the Seahawks may not be a bad option.
↓ Felix Jones, RB, Dallas Cowboys
Felix Jones sat out last week with a high ankle sprain and may miss more time because of it. In his stead stands rookie runner DeMarco Murray, who had a record-setting starting debut with 253 yards on 25 carries, including a 91-yard touchdown. After a performance like that, you can bet the pass-happy Jason Garrett will be giving him the ball fairly often, even when Felix Jones returns.
Once Jones comes back, he will likely regain the starting gig, but I can assure you that he will be in a time-share with Murray. That’s with Jones already on somewhat of a weak workload for a starter, considering how much the Cowboys throw the ball. He will still have a solid game here and there, but with Murray being the more complete back, it’s only a matter of time before Jones possibly even loses his starting role.