Welcome to the Week 15 “My Fantasy” breakdown of the Giants-Redskins game.
Here’s the link to this week’s answers to the fantasy Q&A.
As always, we label our Start, Monitor and Sit categories after songs. This week’s selection is all by requests. We are going with Wu-Tang Clan for Start as requested by @billlwoo; Nas for Monitor as requested by PF (NY) on our weekly chat; and Public Enemy for Sit as requested by @aLoopShallOmit.
If you have a musical request for next week, send it to @NotoriousOHM. And feel free to ask fellow owners for suggestions on who to start in the comments section below and help out other owners with suggestions as well! Good luck!
*The number next to certain players is the amount of times that player has been targeted this season.
“METHOD MAN” (Start)
QB Eli Manning –- Manning actually had his worst game of the year in the season-opener against the Redskins with no passing touchdowns and a pick-six while being sacked a season-high four times. He had a season-low passer rating of 70.8 in that loss but the Redskins will face a much different Manning this time around. We don’t know what Manning will have in store for an encore to top his Dallas performance but start Manning and ride the hot hand.
WR Hakeem Nicks (107) –- Nicks is coming on strong just when owners need him the most. He had eight receptions for 163 yards last week and now faces a Redskins team which he had seven catches for 122 yards against in Week 1. The Redskins defense hasn’t given up a ton of catches, only allowing nine receptions to opposing wide receivers in each of the past four games. But during that stretch, the Redskins also allowed at least one touchdown to opposing wide receivers. Start Nicks.
WR Victor Cruz (103) –- Cruz finally slowed down a bit with six receptions for 74 yards. It was the lowest yardage output by Cruz since Oct. 16. But he still had a good game and still was targeted eight times by Manning. In his last seven games, Cruz has been targeted 70 times by Manning. As written above, the Redskins haven’t surrendered a ton of receptions as of late to wide receivers but can be scored on. Start Cruz.
RB Ahmad Bradshaw (35) –- Bradshaw burned several owners last week when he violated team rules and was benched for the first half against Dallas. He only finished with 12 yards rushing on eight carries while Brandon Jacobs carried the ball 19 times. Provided there aren’t any unforeseen surprises, we still expect Bradshaw to start and get more than eight carries. But with the way Jacobs is running, the Giants likely could go with Jacobs in goal line situations.
The Redskins definitely can be run on as they surrendered three rushing touchdowns to Shonn Greene and the Jets just a few weeks ago. And last year -– granted the Redskins have improved their defensive line –- Bradshaw and Jacobs combined to run for 200 yards here at MetLife Stadium against Washington.
We recommend Bradshaw as a RB2 starting option, one that is more attractive in PPR leagues as well. The Giants offensive line is run-blocking much better with Kevin Boothe at center and Mitch Petrus at left guard so Bradshaw could benefit.
RB Brandon Jacobs (21) –- Jacobs had his best game of the season last week with 101 yards and two touchdowns against the Cowboys. The Giants like what they are getting out of the big fella and he’s a good RB2/flex option. Hope for another touchdown.
TE Jake Ballard (59) –- Ballard had four catches for 52 yards and a touchdown. As has been the case much of this season, Manning looks for Ballard often when in a hurry-up, need-a-score mode. The Redskins defense was destroyed last week by New England TE Rob Gronkowski but otherwise is pretty decent against tight ends. Ballard jammed his wrist last week but should be good to go. We still think Ballard is a top-15 TE option this week, especially in PPR leagues.
Redskins: RB Roy Helu, WR Santana Moss, QB Rex Grossman (for those in need of a QB), WR Jabar Gaffney (in PPR leagues).
“MADE YOU LOOK” (Monitor)
WR Mario Manningham (72) –- Manningham is healthy and is going to play. But we put him in the monitor section because he’s a borderline play. As stated above, the Redskins defense hasn’t given up a ton of catches but have allowed at least one touchdown to opposing wide receivers in each of the last four games. Manningham was targeted eight times last week but only came up with two catches for 62 yards. He did score a touchdown on a busted coverage by Dallas but he also dropped a touchdown. We recommend Manningham as a WR3/flex option in PPR leagues. He could score a touchdown but considering this is the playoffs, if you have a better option, you may want to go with a safer option.
Giants defense –- The Giants defense has been torched by opponents for three straight weeks. But this is a game that the Giants could get some sacks and turnovers off Rex Grossman. Consider the Giants an option to start if there isn’t a better matchup available.
“SHUT ‘EM DOWN” (Sit)
RB D.J. Ware (30) –- Ware can only be considered a fantasy option when Bradshaw or Jacobs is out.
WR Ramses Barden (13)–- Barden doesn’t see enough snaps or targets to warrant starting.
TE Travis Beckum (6) –- Beckum got two targets last week, including one in the end zone on a fade attempt. But he suffered a chest injury during the game and is out for this week.