October 16, 2010

Buy Low, Sell High: Weeks 3-5

We are slowly moving our way through the fantasy football season. If you're sitting at 0-5, you'd better break the glass on the fire extinguisher, because you've got a major problem on your hands. If you're sitting pretty at 5-0 or 4-1, there's always room for improvement. That's what this segment is here for, to let you know who you should buy low on and who to sell high on. I hope this can turn your dud into a stud or your contender into a champion.

Buy Low:

Hines Ward WR, Steelers
An average line of 3/40 and a single touchdown this year make Hines Ward owners really question why they are, well, Hines Ward owners. Of course, this is also with guys like Dennis Dixon and Charlie Batch throwing him the ball. A wideout is only as good as the QB throwing him the ball. (I'm looking at you Larry Fitzgerald). Unlike his counterpart in Arizona, Ward's QB situation is drastically improving from here on out. I've said it many times on this site, but I'll say it again. Big Ben will come back and shine as he attempts to play his way back into the people's hearts. He could still top 3,000 yards passing in these last 12 games, a lot of them in the direction of Hines.

Ryan Mathews RB, Chargers
Mathews was supposed to be the golden boy this year in San Diego. 5 weeks pass, and now he is struggling to get more carries than a guy who looks more like an eating champion than a running back. The one stat that makes me think Mathews' is sure to take a turn in the right direction is his 5.1 yards per carry. Norv Turner can do what he like with his carries, but sooner or later Mike Tolbert gaining 12 yards on 11 carries will not cut it anymore. Tolbert should stay entrenched in his role as the goal-line back so if you're in a TD heavy league, Mathews isn't much of a target, but he should catch on fire in the yards and receptions categories as he starts to see more playing time.

Sell High: 

Terrell Owens WR, Bengals
Two great weeks and everyone starts to think TO is back to his early 2000s form. TO has been pretty hot and cold, and that is without having played the real meat of the Bengals' schedule. Owens might prey on the weak this season, but when Pittsburgh twice, the Ravens, Jets, etc. watch his production suffer. If you are a TO owner, and don't mind the potential 20 yard weeks, then go ahead and hold onto him because he might have 1 or 2 more 150 yard explosions in him. But if you can get a more consistent WR who won't lose you weeks, I'd prefer that option over TO every time.

Calvin Johnson WR, Lions
Megatron has been a touchdown machine this year, I guess that's because he is a machine. But that's about all he's done. With a measly 5/60 line per game this year, Johnson has definitely failed to live up to his 2nd round billing in fantasy drafts. Throw in the fact that he is starting to show the signs of nagging injuries that are oh so common with Calvin, and you have a recipe for a very underachieving WR. Take the chance while you have it, and dish the Lions' only WR threat while his total fantasy points still look pretty.