Fantasy Football Christopher Harris
Send your questions now and join Harris in The Show on Monday at 11 a.m. ET!
Christopher Harris (10:56 AM)
Hi, everyone. Welcome to the 11 a.m. chat. Let's get right down to the business of evaluating Week 11 and looking forward....
TB in Pittsburgh,PA
Have you heard any updates on Ernest Graham's injury and what it would mean for the Tampa Bay backfield?
Christopher Harris (10:59 AM)
Hi, TB. I don't have any more word than what Tampa's beat reporters gave us last night: Graham was in a walking boot and Jon Gruden would only say it was an ankle injury, but wouldn't comment on the severity. It's pure speculation at this point, but if Graham is going to miss time, you'd think Warrick Dunn would be a full-fledged starter next week against the terrible-tackling Lions. Tasty. Cadillac Williams would get more ownable for sure, though everything I read last week indicated that Caddy wouldn't be ready for Week 12 regardless, and that the earliest he could play would be Week 13. That timetable could conceivably be pushed up, I guess.
10:59 - PICK ME. Hightower has struggled the last two games and faces a tough NYG run D next week. What are the chances he keeps his starting role? What is his value going forward? Also, better backup to Brees - Garrard or Thigpen? Better wiaver pickup ? Gage or Ginn, Jr.?
Christopher Harris (11:01 AM)
Hi, Mike. Yeah, I've been throwing cold water on the whole Hightower thing for a couple weeks. Chalk one up for the redhead. (Then again, I endorsed David Garrard this week. Ga.) I don't think his starting gig is in jeopardy just yet -- they're still winning, and let's face it, they pass an awful lot. I don't think Hightower makes a good play at *all* next week against the Giants, of course. I think he's a matchup RB2 right now. At this point, I think Thigpen has to be considered the better backup, and I like Gage over Ginn, though Ginn is getting more involved in the Miami offense for sure.
No catches for Scheffler?! What happened?!
Christopher Harris (11:02 AM)
Yeah, Brian. What's up with *that*??? Scheffler only had two targets, which to me was a pretty big shocker, though one of them came close to the end zone (it was a bad throw). I guess he's not quite as rock-solid as we thought, eh? It's possible his groin injury isn't quite right, and Daniel Graham catching the winning TD really hurts....
I'm curious if there's any word on Brandon Jacobs. I've got an offer on the table giving me Jacobs and Trent Edwards for Romo and McGahee. I have Warner, so I'm not gonna be missing Romo. My other RBs are Barber and Steven Jackson. I just want to make sure I will have Jacobs moving forward, because I'm sitting at 5-5 and can't afford to lose these next two weeks if I want to make the playoffs.
Christopher Harris (11:05 AM)
Hi, Steve. Peter King said last night that Jacobs's agent said that Jacobs was having an MRI on his knee today, but that it was "precautionary." How precautionary? Well, your guess is as good as mine. I tend to think he's all right, but let's face it: the guy has an injury history. That said, if you have another QB to play in front of Edwards (so the Romo loss doesn't hurt as much), the upgrade from McGahee to Jacobs sounds good to me, knowing what I know today. Tomorrow we could be told something horrible about Jacobs's knee, so there'd clearly be risk. But he's just playing so well. (And it's not like McGahee is a pillar of healthy, either.)
Hi, what is your thoughts on Chris Johnson. Two weak games in a row and one was against a D that others have run on quite a bit. He was totally shut down by Chi who gave up a ton to Ryan Grant yesterday. Is Johnson just having a dry spell or time to worry about "rookie wall"?
Christopher Harris (11:07 AM)
Hi, John. There could be some rookie wall involved, I guess, except LenDale White hasn't done a whole heckuva lot either. From what I've seen (and I watched the TEN/CHI game live last week, but I have to admit I haven't gotten to the JAC/TEN tape yet today), opposing defenses are just deciding to let Kerry Collins throw as much as he can, as long as they can shut down the running game. That strategy didn't work either of the past two games, so I'm not sure defenses will keep it up. Johnson has a tough matchup against the Jets this week, so it's hard to be definite about a return to glory in Week 12. But I'm not ready to say he's fried or anything like that.
Are you buying up Steven Jackson if you're a lock for the playoffs, or staying away?
Christopher Harris (11:09 AM)
Hi, Greg. Whoosh. Well, it's a great question. I guess it really depends on how much I have to give up to get him. If I can give up a piece I have no other use for? I might think about it. But if I have to give up something useful, I think I'd rather play it safe. Jackson did come back from a season of injuries last year to be useful at the end of the '07 playoffs, but the articles I've read about his quads are scary: like, they seem to be getting worse, and nobody knows why. I know I'm hedging, but that's because it's a really good question. I guess if you pin me down, I'd rather stay away. Unless he's free.
Is Peyton Hillis my fantasy savior?
Christopher Harris (11:11 AM)
Hi, Billy. Well, for one week, he was. Darren McFadden and Felix Jones' fullback at Arkansas is officially a bigger fantasy factor than either of his famous brethren. Could he be entering Samkon Gado territory? I guess it's possible. He seems like a decent bet to be the short-yardage guy regardless, and as such should clearly be owned in all leagues (and should have been last week, too). I don't think he's going to lead the team in carries the rest of the way: Tatum Bell and Selvin Young are still around to muck up the works. But Hillis does seem like the potential top point getter in that mix.
Tina Lord (Llanview PA)
When are you getting your own soap opera gig? Seems only fair. OK, the real question - Clinton Portis, I can't believe he played. Do you or Stephania have an update on him from after the game?
Christopher Harris (11:13 AM)
Hi, Tina. I *barely* know what you're talking about. It's funny -- I have my head down so far writing the Breakdown (and, to a lesser extent, the Big Rotowski) that I don't really get to hear or pay much attention to what our "personalities" are up to. But anyway, yeah, I, too, sure was shocked to hear the reports around 6 p.m. ET yesterday, when the news filtered in that Portis was warming up and looked like he was going to try to go. I haven't heard anything about him being in pain after the game -- there'll be time for that, I suppose. But he looked *really* strong to me last night. I think he's a must-start in a pretty good matchup against Seattle next week.
After you explicitly said, "Don't sit Lewis for Hightower" in your Breakdown, I went ahead and did just that. Bust City. What do you think is happening in the Cardinals' backfield?
Christopher Harris (11:15 AM)
Hi, Ted. Well, even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while, right? And Lewis could still fumble six times tonight. I still think Hightower is the guy; J.J. Arrington got some looks because the Cards were spread out so much in the second half, and the fact that he accounted for the TD makes the situation sting all the more. I still think Hightower is by far the more valuable piece, but as I said earlier, I don't go near him this week against the Jints.
Hey Christopher, I made a trade for the Bears D three weeks ago (awesome!!!). Do you think they'll be useable again this year? Can you recommend a D to pick up for the stretch run?
Christopher Harris (11:17 AM)
Hi, Bryan. Yeah. Oops. That's what happens when a secondary gets completely decimated, though that doesn't explain getting run over by Ryan Grant yesterday. Anyway, looking at the schedules for the rest of the season, I think Miami has a very nice one, and their front seven is stout. And Buffalo's schedule isn't that daunting, defense-wise, either. I think the Dolphins would be my top choice, though: NE, STL, BUF, SF, KC. Pretty OK.
I'm basically in the playoffs. With that in mind, which side do you prefer: Thomas Jones/Roddy White or Addai/Colston? Based on names alone the 2nd group is *sexier*, but the first group wins on actual performance.
Christopher Harris (11:20 AM)
Hi, John. Yeah, production-wise, it's not close. I think Addai is going to have a better fantasy-playoff stretch than Jones. Their respective schedules from Weeks 13 to 16 -- Jones: DEN, SF, BUF, SEA. Addai: CLE, CIN, DET, JAC. Jones's isn't terrible, but Addai's looks *sweet*. But White is a more valuable commodity right now than Colston, and that's obvious. I think the swap is rather fair, actually -- maybe a slight advantage to Jones/White just because Jones is pretty solid, schedule-wise, too.
What is Andy Reid doing. He comes out calling throw after throw after throw.I know the line is not playing well but how does Westbrook only touch the ball 15 times and that was with an entire overtime.
Christopher Harris (11:21 AM)
Hi, John. It's a great question. I know it's common to say that Reid uses the short pass as an extension of the run, so his raw run/pass numbers aren't fair game to complain about, but when Westy only catches 3 balls for 11 yards, well, I'm flat-out of excuses. This is another tape I haven't watched yet, but I will -- what everyone is saying is that McNabb regressed big time and looked completely slow, and that Reid really wet the bed. I can't say I know first-hand at this point, but the Eagles aren't looking like a playoff team right now....
Fixed: (Steelers D):
What happened? How could they take the TD after it was called on the field and then UPHELD after the replay? Not to mention the weak holding call on Parker's TD 30 seconds earlier. What's your take on this "historic" score?
Christopher Harris (11:23 AM)
Crazy. Believe me, you're not the only one complaining. Anyone who took the Steelers and gave the points is standing on a ledge right now, waiting for the NFL to reconsider. They're not going to. Were they invested in having the first-ever 11-10 final score? I can't imagine they were. It was a terrible, terrible decision. I guess phantom holding calls aren't a new thing (how about Mike Vrabel getting called for looking at a Jet blocker in the Thursday night game late?), but I've never seen such an obvious muck-up as that last-play-lateral-fumble thingy that Polamalu scored on. Crazy.
chris,our trade deadline is at midnight tonight let me know what you think of this trade: boldin for addai straight up?
Christopher Harris (11:24 AM)
Hi, Dave. Clearly, that's a deal all about need. On its face, Boldin is having the *much* better season, but as I mentioned earlier, Addai has a dream schedule, and is apparently healthy. If you can stand the hit at WR and desperately need to roll the dice on a RB? I like it fine. But in a vacuum, since Boldin is the top receiver in fantasy to this point this year, he would appear to be the somewhat more valuable guy...
Fill in the blank: ___ will be the most valuable Patriots RB for the rest of the year.
Christopher Harris (11:26 AM)
Hi, Ron. Phew. Good question. I think I'm still going to say Sammy Morris. It was pretty surprising that he was active against the Jets, and that was a tough matchup and the Pats got way down early, so had to spread it out pretty much for three quarters. Morris would be a good ball-control guy, which is still, I think, New England's preferred mode of matriculating the ball down the field post-Brady. I think all will be heard from, but I'm guessing Morris scores the most fantasy points.
The Texans can't seem to catch a break, when do you expect Matt Schaub to be back?
Christopher Harris (11:28 AM)
Hi, Chad. Yeah, so much for Sage Rosenfels being almost Schaub's equal, eh? We were all so quick to proclaim that the Texans made such a great move acquiring Schaub a couple years back, but the guy can't stay healthy, and I wonder if they don't have to draft someone again next April. Schaub looks like he'll return either Week 14 or Week 15...
So is Pierre Thomas worth a number 1 waiver claim in light of his recent performance with Deuce possibly getting suspended this week and Bush still coming off injury? He's gonna take a big role in the offense this week if McAllister is suspended right?
Christopher Harris (11:31 AM)
Hi, WW. What I've read this morning is that while that group of "masking-agent" players *is* probably going to get suspended after an appeal hearing on Tuesday, it may not take affect until Week 13, because the league doesn't like to catch teams partway through a week of practice and hand out suspensions. That would mean Deuce would play in Week 12, I guess. That's by *no* means certain -- it's just what I've read. All that said, Thomas is a pretty good acquisition, because you're right, Bush is no lock to be healthy right away. Is Thomas worth the No. 1 spot? Hard to say. I can't tell you who else is going to come out of the woodwork in the next week or two (or else it wouldn't be a woodwork). If you consider a bird in the hand worth two in the bush, yeah, grab Thomas.
Monday Night Football!!!!!
Who do you see having a better game tonight, Marshawn Lynch or Lee Evans?
Christopher Harris (11:32 AM)
Well, I'm going to go aggressive and say Evans. It's always dicey taking the receiver over the running back, and Lynch could easily dislodge his head from his posterior at any time. But at the moment, he's just not playing very well, and Fred Jackson is stealing touches. Meanwhile, I think Evans gets back on track against a highly suspect Browns secondary tonight.
Christopher Harris (11:33 AM)
I just wanted to say that I was just told the Earnest Graham *is* likely out for the season. That's not official by any means, but it does mean that Warrick Dunn looks like an awesome play next week against the Lions, and Caddy Williams could make himself fantasy-relevant this year....
Brandon Jacobs, say it ain't so!
Assuming that he is out for the season, who would you pick up, Ward or Bradshaw?
Christopher Harris (11:34 AM)
Whoa. That's pretty out there, unless you know something I don't. But if this question is just about which handcuff I think is more valuable? I think I like Ward better....
Big Cats are scary
Chris, I am worried about Steve Smith's value now that Jake Delhomme has lost the ability to throw the ball. Are the Panthers a run first, second, and third team only?
Christopher Harris (11:36 AM)
Well, probably not, no. Delhomme has *stunk*, and I was very surprised to see him not do anything yesterday. But I've watched that game, and I wouldn't say it was *so* much a matter of Delhomme playing badly, the way he did in Oakland the week before. As you imply, I think it was mostly that the Lions can't tackle running backs, so Carolina just ran. I can see being worried, but I can't see getting rid of Smith. He'll be heard from again.
Rob (State College)
If I can get Adrian Peterson for Westbrook and Hightower, do I do it? Westbrook has looked less than inspiring and Hightower is sort of, irrelevant at times, in the Cardinals offense. I also like APs schedule down the stretch. I also have Addai, T Jones, Rhodes, and McAllister at RB.
Christopher Harris (11:37 AM)
Hi, Rob. Peterson's my No. 1 guy the rest of the way. I think you'd be getting the best player in fantasy in that deal, so while dealing Westbrook away is a tough thing to do, I would do it. You're right, with the depth you have, you don't need to worry too much about losing Hightower. Can I *promise* Peterson will be better than Westbrook the rest of the way? Of course not. But I *think* he will be.
Hey Chris, I'm trying to handcuff Forte - who is his backup? THANKS
Christopher Harris (11:39 AM)
Hi, Dan. Oh, I still think it's Kevin Jones. He was out yesterday for "personal issues," and I guess we need to keep our ear to the ground to see if this is going to become a bigger deal. But until further notice, I think he's the guy if Forte gets hurt.
Kevin, Dallas, TX
Steve Breaston is available in my 10 team league but I own Larry Fitzgerald. What do you think of playing two guys like that from the same team?
Christopher Harris (11:40 AM)
Hi, Kevin. Breaston should be owned in all leagues, but yeah, it's very tough to start both those guys. The theory, I guess, is that the upside is limited: there's only so many footballs to go around in the same game, even in a Cardinals game where Kurt Warner is throwing 50-plus times. I think rostering Breaston if you've got an empty roster spot makes sense, but I agree, it's tough to start both him and Fitz.
I keep hearing reports that Jacobs is out 3-4 weeks with an MCL tear. You know anything?
Christopher Harris (11:43 AM)
Hi, Tarr. I don't know anything about it, but that doesn't mean it's not true. I'm sitting in my house in western Mass, and chatting, so obviously I'm not doing much surfing at the moment. Anyone have any definite word on this?
Billy in Philly
So given the Graham news, I drop McAllister for Dunn, yes? And I should leave the chat for a moment and do it right now, yes?
Christopher Harris (11:43 AM)
Yeah, Billy. That sounds like a good idea to me.
Do I drop Delhomme for Cassell? I start Warner at QB, so this is for my backup spot. Thanks!
Christopher Harris (11:45 AM)
Hi, John. No, I don't think so -- I still have Delhomme ranked higher. Cassel has played better, but I think Thursday night was a bit of a confluence of positive factors, not least of which was the Pats getting down big early. If Warner got hurt and you needed to go with someone, though, Leinart might actually be the best bet of all -- lots of tasty weapons, know what I mean?
I know this is an early question for next week but I have a rare situation where I own Romo and Warner. Do you play Romo vs SF next week over Warner against a tough Giants defense?
Christopher Harris (11:47 AM)
Hi, Al (and all who are asking for my Week 12 thoughts) -- I honestly haven't figured out my weekly rankings for next week yet -- which is why I tend not to take too many "next-week-lineup" questions this early on a Monday. Shooting from the hip, I'd say I still start Warner -- I haven't done the analysis yet, but I mean, even in games where he plays badly, it seems like Warner throws so much, he's insanely valuable. And Romo's finger isn't all the way there yet....
Keaton (Sioux City, IA)
Hey Chris - Who do you like more the rest of the way, Westbrook or Portis? Thanks!
Christopher Harris (11:48 AM)
Hi, Keaton. Well, when I thought Portis might be out for multiple weeks, that was an easier question. I guess I'm going to go right back and say Portis -- he ran pretty well last night, and if he's healthy, he's a threat for the rushing title. I don't know what the heck is up with Westbrook.
Locked into a playoff spot and pretty good starting lineup. Please rank these in order of what you would prefer to have on the bench, just in case of injury, or a home run...A. Bradshaw, Cadillac, Sammy Morris, Hillis, A. Pittman (Stl), Ahman Green? Thanks
Christopher Harris (11:50 AM)
Hi, Rick. Well, at this point, I think lottery tickets are a little less valuable than earlier in the season, because even if you own 'em, do you ever get up the courage to start 'em (in your fantasy playoffs no less) before the season ends? I think Hillis and Morris are the two guys here I'd bet on for the most production, TD-wise. Bradshaw isn't a bad idea, because even though he's a third-stringer, he's going to play some. Williams, Green and Pittman *could* do something, given the chance, but I give 'em the longest shots.
EASTERN MA here Chris..Is Colston for Hightower fair? Hightower would be my 8th round keeper next yerar. Thanks fornthe heads up I just picked up Dunn in a 3 Rb league.
Christopher Harris (11:51 AM)
Hi, Steve. I'd probably rather have Colston for the rest of this season, and I'm having a tough time projecting imminent stardom for Hightower next year, so I probably stick with Colston. When you're dealing RB for WR, though, it often comes down to need, and I don't think this is an insane deal if you need a RB.
Has Ryan Grant returned to must-start status?
Christopher Harris (11:53 AM)
Hi, Mike. Hm. I'm not there yet. I have to say that I was pretty dubious about him this week, and I don't have a lot of explanation for what happened. I've written several times this season that I didn't think Grant was playing all that badly, and that touchdowns would eventually come for a guy who's playing acceptably well. I just didn't foresee him taking that Bears defense to task like he did. I guess he's probably a RB2 (which is where I've had him most of the year), with the possibility of the occasional benching against super-tough defenses....But yeah, pretty much you're starting him.
Jake (St. Pete)
Scheffler or Carlson rest of the way?
Christopher Harris (11:53 AM)
Hi, Jake. I think I'm still saying Scheffler, though it'd be nice if we could get more consistency out of him, right?
Is Breaston actually more valuable against good defenses, the ones that can actually slow down Fitz/Boldin? Does that make sense?
Christopher Harris (11:55 AM)
Hi, Jason. Sure, that makes some sense, but I think it's actually more about how teams choose to play. If they play a lot of two-deep zones and just hang safeties like Xmas trees over Fitz and Boldin, Breaston gets man coverage against someone who can't stay with him. If they play 'em more straight up, as Seattle did yesterday, well, you see the result...
Scott, Green Bay
What do we do with Ginn, Jr?? Can I start him over S. Holmes going forward?
Christopher Harris (11:56 AM)
Hi, Scott. Eesh. Tough to do. Holmes was a pretty big part of the Steeler game plan yesterday, and he got a bunch of targets, he just didn't always connect with Big Ben. Ginn's probably not going to run end-arounds for scores too often, and he still only has one receiving touchdown on the season. I'm probably sticking with Holmes for now, though Ginn is definitely picking up a bit of a rep around the league.
Please rank the following for the rest of the year: Fitz, Evans, Driver, Holmes, Gage, Branch, Engram.
Christopher Harris (11:56 AM)
Hi, Igor -- I'm going to postpone you a day -- check out The Big Rotowski tomorrow -- I do year-end ranks for all positions.... (I haven't written it yet.)
Dave (Wise, VA)
Any word on Asomaghu's injury? Concerned Marshall owner.
Christopher Harris (11:57 AM)
Hi, Dave. I guess he left in the second quarter yesterday, but I haven't heard anything official.
Mananger of the Year
I dropped Avery for Hines Ward in my league (shortly after Ward was dropped). Mistake or Masterful Move?
Christopher Harris (11:57 AM)
Ward is *far* more ownable. Good move.
Hey Chris, do you for see better days for Larry Johnson ahead? He didnt look too bad yesterday.
Christopher Harris (11:59 AM)
Hi, Brian. Again, it's another tape that I haven't watched yet, but I will. He did get more looks than most thought he would, which is a good sign, and I think considering he's so clearly a starting back in the NFL, he's a definite fantasy factor. Probably like an RB2 most weeks. I haven't thought his legs have looked very good in previous weeks -- he hasn't seemed to have that same burst we remember from a couple years ago. But maybe the time off helped with that a little.
Christopher Harris (11:59 AM)
All right gang -- gotta get rolling on time this week. Two more...
Chris, what about dropping KFaulk and Holt (cooked) for 2 of these 3: pthomas, dunn, dward? Thanks.
Christopher Harris (12:00 PM)
Hi, Chris. Dunn's the one you want on that list. Whether you drop Faulk or Holt probably depends on whether you are more desperate for WR or RB, but you're right, neither guy is looking scintillating at this point.
Joel ( Roscommon MI)
Is Welker keeper material in a twelve team PPR ?
Christopher Harris (12:01 PM)
Hi, Joel. Yeah, in a PPR he really is. He's going to top the century mark again this year, and while he isn't getting touchdowns, I have a feeling that might get remedied next year when some guy named Brady returns. All right, everyone. Sorry not to be able to get to all of your questions, but remember: there's a Monday Night Football chat this afternoon, with a full hour devoted to fantasy at 3 p.m. ET. Thanks again for coming, and I'll see you soon.....
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