Friday, October 18, 2013
Jaguars fantasy breakdown: Week 7
By Michael DiRocco
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Looking for some help with your fantasy football lineup? Every Friday I'll give you my opinions on which Jacksonville Jaguars players to play and sit, as well as which of the opposing players might be a good play against the Jags. For more fantasy football advice, check out ESPN.com's fantasy football page.
QB Chad Henne: One of Henne’s biggest issues has been lack of consistency. Can he follow up a 303-yard performance against Denver with another solid day against San Diego? The ingredients are in place because he gets tight end Marcedes Lewis back to go along with receiver Justin Blackmon. Cecil Shorts’ status is in doubt so that hurts, but Shorts left last week’s game early. Henne has been the better QB this season. Verdict: Start him if you play two QBs.
RB Maurice Jones-Drew: It looks like Jones-Drew is starting to get into a groove. The offensive line is blocking better, too. But he still hasn’t rushed for more than 71 yards in a game. Verdict: Bench him.
WR Justin Blackmon: His 19 receptions and 326 yards are the most by any receiver in the past two weeks. He is the key to the Jaguars offense. He has rested all week because of a slight hamstring and groin pull, so he could be ready to go Sunday. He’ll be targeted at least 10 times. Verdict: Start him.
WR Cecil Shorts: The Jaguars’ leading receiver (31 catches, 411 yards) is a game-day decision because of an injury to the SC joint near his right shoulder. Even if he plays there’s a question of how effective he can be because it’s a very painful injury. Verdict: Don’t risk it. Put him on the bench.
TE Marcedes Lewis: Lewis’ calf has healed and he’s ready to go, which should make a big difference in the Jaguars running game because of his ability to block on the edge. The team will monitor his snaps to ease him back into the lineup and avoid him re-aggravating the injury. Verdict: If you can pick him up off the waiver wire do so, but I’d wait another week before putting him in the lineup.
K Josh Scobee: He had made 29 consecutive field goals in October. With the offense playing better he should have more opportunities. Verdict: He’s as good a play as any kicker this week.
Defense/special teams: Punt returner Ace Sanders is out with a concussion. The defense frustrated Peyton Manning better than any other team so far this season. Antonio Gates is having a big year and the Jaguars have had trouble with tight ends. Verdict: Sit them.
QB Philip Rivers: He has really taken to Mike McCoy’s West Coast-style offense and is third in the NFL in passing yards (1,847), second in completion percentage (72.6), and tied for second with 14 touchdown passes. He is also being helped by another big-time season from Antonio Gates and the emergence of rookie Keenan Allen. Verdict: Start him
RB Ryan Mathews: He also is experiencing a resurgence under McCoy. He leads San Diego with 336 yards rushing, but he has yet to rush for a touchdown. He’s losing touches to Danny Woodhead, too. Verdict: If you don’t have a better option as a flex, play him. Otherwise, sit him.
RB Danny Woodhead: He’s tied for the team lead with 36 catches and leads the team with 73 touches on offense. He’ll get a lot of touches but he’s only averaging 68 yards of total offense per game. He has scoured three TDs. Verdict: Not a bad option for a flex player or a No. 3 running back.
WR Keenan Allen: The rookie from California is coming off back-to-back games in which he has 100-plus receiving yards and one touchdown. He’s averaging a team-best 14.4 yards per catch among players with double-digit catches. Verdict: He’s a nice option as your No. 3 receiver.
WR Vincent Brown: He is Rivers’ top target among wide receivers (24 catches) but has only one touchdown catch. Verdict: He’s worth a gamble as a flex player.
WR Eddie Royal: He leads the Chargers with five touchdown catches, which matches his season total from 2012. But he hasn’t practiced all week because of a toe injury and is listed as questionable. Verdict: Sit him.
TE Antonio Gates: He is tied for the team lead with 36 catches, which is only two behind the NFL leader among tight ends (Cleveland’s Jordan Cameron has 38). The Jaguars have had trouble with tight ends all season and Gates should have a big day. Verdict: You’re crazy if you don’t start him
K Nick Novak: He has made 13 of 15 field goal attempts, including a 6-for-6 mark from 40 yards or longer. Only four kickers have made more field goals. Verdict: Play him.
Defense/special teams: The Chargers have forced only three turnovers (two interceptions, one fumble) and are giving up nearly 400 yards per game, but they did a good job against Andrew Luck last week. Verdict: They’re as good a play as any defense.