Written by John Lindinger (Injured Reserve on the forums). I've been in what seems like a million fantasy football leagues with John, and I consider him to be one of my toughest competitors. He will be providing some fantasy insight for this Web site from time to time. You can e-mail John at [email protected].
Oct. 29, 2010.
2010 Fantasy Football Stock Index: Week 8
This is a weekly article that will provide Buy, Hold and Sell ratings on your star fantasy players. It aims to give you advice on the players you need to be targeting, those that need to be stashed on your roster, and the ones that should be traded for the best value possible. Although you may not accomplish many trades in a season, it is important to take advantage of the talent on other teams. Winning a trade provides you with added ammunition that will carry you into the postseason and make you unstoppable once you get there. My aim is to provide you with the best values out there and the players to be avoided.
Jason Witten, TE, Cowboys
Jason Witten has staked his claim on the hearts of his fantasy football owners over the past few years, by being a PPR monster. Although he had put up decent stats over the first five games of the season, I couldn't help but believe that he was being underutilized. With Kitna now at quarterback, Witten will be seeing far more targets as the season progresses. Buy Witten off an owner before he becomes a consistent high fantasy producer with Kitna under center.
Andre Johnson, WR, Texans
He is usually one of those unattainable players. I should know since I had him in every one of my fantasy leagues last season and refused countless offers. But the start of 2010 presents a great opportunity for fantasy owners that have the trade bait to acquire this elite wide receiver. I suggest trading for him now because he is currently the 17th-ranked receiver in PPR leagues, a format in which he usually reigns supreme. This low ranking and trade opportunity will not last considering the rare national attention the Texans will be receiving against the Colts on Monday night.
Santonio Holmes, WR, Jets
Fantasy owners drafted Holmes believing that their four weeks of patience would be rewarded by having Holmes spring immediately to action and become a fantasy force. Well the suspension part came true, but Holmes hasn't lit the world on fire since coming back (held to fewer than 50 yards in his first 2 weeks back). I am a big fan of Santonio Holmes and believe that his production will be greatly improved going forward as both his familiarity with the offense and number of snaps grow. By trading for Holmes now you get the bonus of adding a solid wide receiver to your roster, while simultaneously angering his past owner when Holmes starts to improve on your roster.
Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, Giants
I absolutely love Bradshaw's consistency. He is an exceptional back playing on a team with a strong defense, which will provide many opportunities for him to rack up points as he runs down the clock. I consider Bradshaw a buy candidate this week because he is entering his bye. If his owner in your league is in need of someone to play in his place then you may be able to get Bradshaw in return at a slight discount. For a reliable player of his caliber it is worth a shot.
Miles Austin, WR, Cowboys
Tony Romo's injury has thrown the entire Dallas Cowboys' wide receiving corps into question. This has made many fantasy owners wary of starting them going forward. When you combine this unsettling predicament with Miles Austin's inconsistency (3 games of 3 receptions or fewer), you are likely going to find some owners looking to unload him. This would be an unwise move. Austin is an extremely talented wide receiver who has showcased his ability over the past year. Do not trade him, as he is too talented to drop off the map and can't get anymore inconsistent then he already is.
Ryan Torain, RB, Redskins
Torain is looking more legitimate by the week. His two consecutive 100-yard rushing performances are beginning to give me confidence that he can hold off Clinton Portis even upon his return. I expect an even stronger performance as he heads to Detroit in Week 8. His owners should be excited at the production they have gotten off the waiver wire and have faith that the solid outings will continue.
Wes Welker, WR, Patriots
Welker's numbers have not been spectacular since the departure of Randy Moss. Many will point out correctly that the missing deep threat has left less room for Welker to maneuver in. But unlike these pessimists, I am confident that Welker will snap out of his mini-funk. He has shown time and again his importance in the Patriots' offense. New England will emphasize getting him more involved, leading to him resuming his high level of production sooner rather than later.
Eli Manning, QB, Giants
As Eli heads into his Week 8 bye I feel that it is necessary to place the hold tag on him. After only a week removed from being called one of the league's most overrated players, he manages to light up Dallas. His four-touchdown performance has raised him in the ranks of fantasy quarterbacks, all the way up to seventh place. Many fantasy owners will still view him as an overrated quarterback who will not continue this high production. I, on the other hand, believe in Eli and this young receiving corps. Eli has great things in store for the fantasy owners that are willing to place their faith in him.
Chad Ochocinco, WR, Bengals
Chad Ochocinco's fantasy owners should be looking to deal him this week. I would not go as far to say that his 10 receptions for 108 yards and a touchdown in Week 7 were a fluke, but I would like to point out that he has consistently delivered poor stats, unworthy of a WR2, for the majority of the season. His breakout games in Weeks 1 and 7 demonstrate that the big-play ability is still there, however, his owners' are forced to stomach frequent disappointing weeks in the hope of an eventual big game. You need to deal Ochocinco now while his value is high to get a more consistent receiver in return. In the long run getting a more consistent wideout in a trade will net more wins for your team.
Donovan McNabb, QB, Redskins
McNabb has thrown more interceptions than touchdowns in a Redskins uniform, while also not managing to put up more than one touchdown in a single game this season. I really don't need to explain to fantasy owners that these stats are unacceptable for a starting fantasy quarterback. Normally I would not even recommend him as a sell option since his value is clearly low, but the recent injuries to quarterbacks present an opportunity. A trade with an owner who just lost Tony Romo would be very achievable, especially if he isn't trying to leverage his team for a quarterback. You can offer owners like this a mediocre signal-caller with a lot of name value for a reasonable price. They get to add depth at a crucial position and you get something in return for a disappointing draft pick.
Carson Palmer, QB, Bengals
As I mentioned above, there are owners right now in your league in need of quarterback depth. Palmer, despite his deteriorating abilities, will be enticing to some of these owners. He is coming off a 400-yard, three-touchdown game that has shot him into the top 10 quarterback fantasy rankings. Palmer is not as talented as his stats make him appear. Try and sell him to an owner who has lost his signal-caller or is suffering through the performances of a Jay Cutler or Brett Favre.
Cadillac Williams, RB, Buccaneers
Cadillac has managed to put up decent numbers the past two weeks. But his owners need to be wary of LeGarrette Blount's emergence in the backfield. Keep a close eye on this running back situation and try to get rid of Cadillac before he has no trade value.