Fantasy NFL with Chris Harris
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday morning, ESPN.com fantasy expert Christopher Harris will drop by to take your questions and analyze all the latest football news from a fantasy perspective.
Send your questions now and join Harris Wednesday at 11 a.m. ET!
Need an in-depth answer to your question? Want your roster or trade offers reviewed? Get a personalized response from an ESPN expert with The Answer Guys. All questions answered within 24 hours, guaranteed. Ask your question
More Fantasy: Fantasy Home Page
Christopher Harris (11:01 AM)
Good morning, folks. They've moved my chat from Thursday to Wednesday this week, so I can let you know what I'm working on for the Hard Count this week and also give you a sneak preview of my thoughts on Week 7 ranks. Let's get right to your questions.
Easy one here: ROY Torain or BJGE
Christopher Harris (11:02 AM)
Hi, Mark. Talk about two vexing teams for RBs. I would feel safer answering this question *after* this week, after I see whether Belichick has done anything to switch up his RBs after the bye. But knowing what I know now, with Torain's injury history, I think I prefer BJGE. My answer is subject to change, though.
Big fan, Writer Boy! Keep up the good work! Anyway, I am 2-5 and coming off losing Moss, McGahee and Graham to injuries. I'm two games out of the playoffs and 9th out of 12 teams. At what point do you start playing for next year?
Christopher Harris (11:03 AM)
Thanks, Jeff. Yeah, we're getting to the point where the pretenders are separating themselves...in a bad way. I think where you stand right now, you're not under any obligation to sell for selling's sake. Weird things can happen, and if you keep crunching away at the waiver wire you can get lucky. But I don't mind dipping oars in the trade waters to see who's buying, and if someone makes you an obscene offer, I would consider it.
Darren (Binghamton, NY)
Is Chris Johnson so far this year the biggest bust in fantasy history? And does he ever turn it around going forward?
Christopher Harris (11:06 AM)
Hi, Darren. I'm going to say no, he's not the biggest bust in fantasy history yet. If he continues along this path, well, he'll climb the rolls. There was a Shaun Alexander year I seem to remember where he fell off a cliff, maybe a Larry Johnson year. But yeah, for a non-injured guy, it's been awful, and the tape didn't lie from last week's game: He either didn't have the ability or the motivation to make his typical hard cuts and acceleration. Alarming stuff. Against my earlier judgment, I have to believe that his holdout has to be at least partly at fault. Will he turn it around? I think he will in his career. This season? Man. I'm not as sure.
does andre return this week if so how will he do
Christopher Harris (11:08 AM)
Hi, Abe. It sounds as though Andre Johnson is going to practice this week, so that's a very good sign, and the fact that the Texans let Trindon Holliday go would appear to mean that Jacoby Jones is headed back to punt return duties, which would mean he's also headed back to third-receiver duties. Connecting the dots, I think Johnson plays. And if they run him out there, you should, too.
Hi Chris, Is Stafford and Andre Johnson 9assuming both healthy) too much to give for Arian Foster? I have Rivers as my starting qb and need rb's badly
Christopher Harris (11:08 AM)
I'd do it, Paul. You're giving up a lot for sure, and Rivers has been a mess at QB. But Foster might be back to his fantasy MVP form. He can win you games by himself.
So sell chris johnson?
Christopher Harris (11:09 AM)
Hi, Alex. The problem is: What are you gonna get for him? It's tough to sell a player that low. If someone wants to pay close to his preseason value, fine. But if you're getting, y'know, Mario Manningham for him...you might as well just hang on and hope.
My first source for all things fantasy, thanks! With the byes, I need a boom WR and RB starter instead of the safe play...best bet of Manningham, Antonio Brown, Branch and Mathews vs Murray. Thx!
Christopher Harris (11:11 AM)
Hi, Eric. Thanks for the kind words. The boomiest of this group, I think, are Deion Branch and, gulp, DeMarco Murray. Listen, obviously most people should start Mathews over Murray. But if you're trying to catch lightning in a bottle, why not try the guy who just set the Cowboys single-game rushing record against a mediocre Eagles run defense? I *absolutely* can see Murray doing nothing on a national TV game Sunday night. But I think he's got the most upside.
Do you think Brian Lenoard, given Benson's suspension, is startable this week for the rb desperate?
Christopher Harris (11:12 AM)
Hi, Dave. I think you'd have to be pretty desperate. I did rank Leonard this week (I put him 39th among RBs), but I have a pretty good suspicion that he'll mostly play third downs, and Bernard Scott will carry the rock. If Scott falters, though, Leonard could get a few extra early-down looks. Like I say, pretty desperate.
Nathan (Dallas, TX)
Where do you see Demarco Murray being ranked from this point forward? I know he will be high this week but when Felix comes back do you still expect him to get the majority of the carries if he can avoid injuries and being a 1-hit wonder?
Christopher Harris (11:14 AM)
Hi, Nathan. Yeah, I have Murray rated 14th among RBs this week, so you're right...this might be his high water-mark for the year. When Felix Jones comes back, I have to imagine this is a committee waiting to happen, and unfortunately for Murray owners, I think Felix probably takes the lead. Now, that's subject to change. If Murray blows up again this week (or next, if Felix is still out) maybe things get shaken up. But Felix is the incumbent and the Cowboys still do like him. I'll bet they have a sneaking suspicion that Felix could've lit up that terrible Rams run D, too.
Marky Mark (CA)
Help me pick my flex this week in ppr league: Tolbert, Battle, Moreno, or Nate W.
Christopher Harris (11:15 AM)
Hi, Mark. I'd probably go with Battle, under the assumption that he'll touch the ball most of this group.
Michael (Lovely, KY)
Earlier you liked BJGE over Torain for ROY, but who do you think is the better waiver wire pick up this week Torain or Helu?
Christopher Harris (11:17 AM)
Hi, Michael. Eesh. I guess I have to say Torain, but if you've read anything I've written over the past few weeks, you probably saw me saying how freaked out I am relying on anything Mike Shanahan is supposedly set to do with his RBs. He proved me right again last week, randomly going back to Tim Hightower, before TH's injury. I *think* Torain is the starter. I *think* Helu is the change-of-pace. Heck, I *think* Evan Royster might get in the mix. I'm guessing Torain scores more fantasy points. But heck, I dunno.
Am I worth starting this week?
Christopher Harris (11:18 AM)
Sure. I have Moreno ranked 18th among RBs. The biggest issue he has is that the Broncos just don't seem to consider Moreno a viable inside rusher, and they've got Tebow to pound in the short scores anyway. But Moreno should have the most RB touches in Denver, and the Lions run defense continues to only be so-so.
Greg (College Station, TX)
Your thoughts on Jahvid Best? Lots of talk about the concussions and whether he plays again this year. Is he a safe drop, I could use the bench space.
Christopher Harris (11:19 AM)
Hi, Greg. I really don't have any insight. I didn't rank Best this week, under the assumption that no news is bad news in this case. But I also believe the Lions when they say that they don't view this injury as a season-ender, at least not yet. The DET offense missed Best in a big way last week. I think I'd have a hard time dropping him.
The Miscalculation (Jersey Shore)
big fan, especially at 10:30am on Sundays. would you trade Tolbert for Manningham?
Christopher Harris (11:20 AM)
Thanks very much. I think it's roughly fair, if you have a surplus at RB and need a WR. I think Manningham is a strong buy-low right now. Not that he's destined for WR1-hood, but WR2 is still a possibility. I might aim a touch higher just to see what I can get after Tolbert scored a TD last week. But I don't hate this.
Hey Chris, do you think the 49ers D is elite for ROS? Thanks
Christopher Harris (11:21 AM)
Hi, Walker. It's a good question. I sure like them this week against the opposite-of-explosive Browns. Carlos Rogers is playing just great at corner, proving that he really was the best CB in D.C. when DeAngelo Hall was so busy talking. And Pat Willis is Pat Willis. "Elite" might be pushing it. In matchups against strong offenses, I'm going to shy away. But when they get cupcakes, ride 'em. I have them rated 4th this week.
do you think i come back strong after the bye?
Christopher Harris (11:22 AM)
It's interesting, because the Raiders are so tight-lipped about injuries. There have been mixed signals about this so far, and honestly I don't think we'll know anything until about a week from now. The good thing is that Adam Schefter is pretty tied into the Raiders, so when he winds up giving an update, I'm going to believe the living heck out of it.
Not sure if you've seen the game tape, but was there anything from the 2nd half of Detroit's game last week to hint at whether Morris or Williams will likely be favored this week? I'm going to have to start one of them.
Christopher Harris (11:24 AM)
Hi, Rob. I have watched that tape. Morris was on the field for more of the second half of the Falcons game, though Williams was given an entire series in both the first and second half to see what he could do. It looks like a platoon to me, and I lifted Keiland's profile just a bit this week. But I put Morris at 31 and Williams at 35, so I prefer Morris just a bit. As I'm currently writing about for Friday's Hard Count, that Denver run defense isn't as soft as we think.
Your thoughts on J. Baldwin ROY? Is he worth a stash in a dynasty league? It seemed like he was targeted a decent number of times last week.
Christopher Harris (11:26 AM)
Hi, Shaun. I think it would depend how deep the keeper league is. I think Baldwin has some career upside. He's got loads of talent. But from college he brought with him a rep for not working hard and for lazy play, and his antics so far in KC back that up. I'm guessing it might still be a while before he gets star treatment. He did have five targets last week, though.
Burress or Manningham ROS?
Christopher Harris (11:26 AM)
Hi, Jake. Pretty sacrilegious to say this a week after a guy scores three TDs, but I think I still prefer Manningham. Did someone say I'm stubborn? I think I have to agree.
I can only stash 1 in a .5ppr between Greg Little and Demaryius Thomas. Which one would you recommend with some thought please?
Christopher Harris (11:27 AM)
Hi, Mark. Hm. Toughie. If it weren't a PPR, I think I might say Thomas just for the pure WR1 upside. But the Tebow factor limits how valuable that might be anyway. With the PPR factor, maybe I'll give you Little. (In a full PPR, I'd feel stronger about that.) I think Little could grab 40 passes the rest of the way, easy.
I have both Gates and Hernandez in a ppr league and I'm very thin at WR. Would Lloyd be a good target in a trade for Gates?
Christopher Harris (11:28 AM)
Hi, Mike. Aim higher. Lloyd has a lot of unknowns, not least of which is his injured QB. You should be able to do better if you're going to trade the consensus preseason TE1.
Kelly Kapowski (Bayside)
Rank em ROS...Tebow, Romo and Rivers...
Christopher Harris (11:29 AM)
Hi, Kelly. I'll say...hm...Romo, Rivers, Tebow? They are actually my Nos. 9, 10 and 11 QBs this week. But Romo is probably higher than that in my mind in general...I just think Sunday night might be a bit of a tough spot for him. Boy, Rivers has disappointed.
Keeper League: DHB, Antonio Brown, Demaryius Thomas?
Christopher Harris (11:31 AM)
Hi, Jack. I don't think it would be Brown. With Wallace on his team, he doesn't have WR1 upside. I think I'll go DHB. I know. Ew. But four weeks in a row is pretty good. I do like Thomas, too.
I picked up Shaun Hill this morning assuming Stafford sits. If Hill starts, would you start him over Painter and Kolb?
Christopher Harris (11:32 AM)
Hi, Jim. I believe I would, yes. I did rank Stafford for Wednesday's ranks, but I agree that the confidence with which the Lions were speaking about him playing in Week 8 has abated some. I don't love Hill, but he'd be entering a pretty good situation in a winnable game, whereas those other two guys are just playing like dogs.
Rob (State College)
Hey Chris - *Really* appreciate the time you take with us chatting and the work you do! Is the Bears DST one to hold on to during their bye? I picked up the Giants as a fill in. There's no one necessarily compelling on the WW to drop them for so I figured on dropping the Giants after this week.
Christopher Harris (11:33 AM)
Hi, Rob. Thank you. I think holding onto the Bears makes sense given that there's nothing on waivers that you love. The Giants get Justin Tuck back this week and they'll be rushing Matt Moore, an enviable situation. In general, though, I do view that Giants D as a matchup play.
Should they just start me after the bye? I seriously can't be any worse than Boller or Palmer...
Christopher Harris (11:33 AM)
Ha. I don't think we're quite there yet with Carson.
Aaron (Elkhart, IN)
Hey Chris, if Andre starts do I play him over Colston? Megatron is my other WR so it has to come down to those two, thanks.
Christopher Harris (11:34 AM)
Hi, Aaron. I rated AJ 7th and Colston 8th among WRs this week, so I guess by the letter of the law I say AJ. But heck, if you'd rather just stay away from the risk of re-injury, I don't mind going with Colston for a week. AJ obviously has best-receiver-in-the-game upside, though.
Take a chance on CJ by giving up Tebow/Green for him? I have Foster, Wells and Morris at RB.
Christopher Harris (11:35 AM)
Hi, Jeff. It actually probably depends on your WR depth. A.J. Green is looking like an every-week starter, so you're giving up a significant player. But if he's 4th or something on your depth chart, sure, this is the kind of thing that can pay off big. You just hang onto CJ2K (or should we call him CJ0K?) and see what happens.
JOE FLACCO - what gives? Does he rebound vs. Arizona?
Christopher Harris (11:36 AM)
Mark, I'll bet the Ravens are asking the same dang question. He looked so good in the opener against the Steelers, lit up the Rams pretty good, but boy versus the Jets and Jags in two of his past three, he's just stunk. You have to expect the Ravens to be pretty ticked this week. But if I could sit Flacco, I'd probably do it. Too up and down. (I rated him 12th in the good matchup this week, though.)
Mark (College Park)
Do you like Gresham enough to try to trade Finley for WR upgrade?
Christopher Harris (11:37 AM)
I think it probably depends on how much you need the upgrade. I don't think Gresham is a top-10 fantasy tight end. So I'd prefer not to have to roll with him. But if you're desperate for a top WR.....
Schaub or Tebow this week AND ROS - please and thanks!
Christopher Harris (11:38 AM)
Hi, Chris. I have Schaub for both. He's 8th on my list for this week while Tebow is 11th, and given how well he's been playing without Andre Johnson, I have to believe even better times are ahead.
OCCUPY CHAT (ESPN PARK)
Hi Chris, thanks in advance for selecting my question... do you foresee VJax showing up at any point this season even with Rivers struggles? Is he worth packaging with Garcon to get home run hitting Mike Wallace??
Christopher Harris (11:39 AM)
I do think Jackson has some good games in him, just as I do think Rivers will get better. But am I positive? I am not. I would still make him a top 10 fantasy WR, but yes, obviously Wallace is higher than that. If I had no need of Garcon (and really, I'm not thrilled about any single piece of that inept Colts offense), I would probably do this deal and hope Jackson and Rivers don't finally figure things out.
Hi writerboy. Stocked with waiver wire RB's. Please rank ROY: Hardesty, Moreno, Helu, Tate, Alphonso Smith
Christopher Harris (11:40 AM)
Hi, Andrew. I don't have a formal list of ROY RBs (that's Tristan Cockroft's job, and he does a great job with it), but off the cuff I would say Hardesty, Helu, Tate, Moreno, Smith. I hate messing with Shanny RBs, but Helu does have some pretty interesting upside with Torain being the only thing between him and a starting gig. (Presumably.)
Hello, Chris! What do you think about the NO RB situation should Ingram miss time? Is Pierre in line for the majority of the non-Sproles carries, or does Ivory get activated in time for Sunday?
Christopher Harris (11:42 AM)
Hi, Jason. I honestly don't think the Saints have decided yet. Ivory sounds like he would be ready to go, but everything I've read in the NO papers indicates that Ingram thinks he's going to be able to play. It will come down to what happens in practice the next three days, so pay attention to that. I think Ingram will probably be able to go. If he doesn't, yes, I think Frenchy gets a bit of a bump.
It would be great if you guys could post some Rest-Of-Season rankings at some point, since we're nearing the halfway point in the season. YTD point totals, weekly rankings and weekly projections don't tell the whole story.
Christopher Harris (11:43 AM)
Hi, Sean. My mistake, I just said that Tristan does the ROY ranks...it's actually Eric Karabell (and he does a fine job, too). They are "Insider" however, so the way to get 'em is to pay to become an Insider.
It was my birthday yesterday. How about a little present! Trade Williams south for Gates?
Christopher Harris (11:44 AM)
Hi, Scott. Happy birthday. But actually, the person offering you that trade is giving you the best present of all. Yes, I would do that deal in a heartbeat.
Hold on to Hardesty as my #4 RB or pick up Michael Bush?
Christopher Harris (11:45 AM)
Hi, Cam. Since you're talking about your RB4, you can probably hang onto Hardesty (unless you're a McFadden owner, in which case you should handcuff Bush immediately). Hardesty has bigger upside, IMO, at least until we hear that Run-DMC's foot thing is way more serious than we've so far been led to believe.
Mike (Arlington, VA)
Hi Chris, any word on Addai for this week? Did he reinjure himself badly?
Christopher Harris (11:46 AM)
Hi, Mike. The Colts haven't given much of an indication yet. I assumed that Addai wasn't going to play when I ranked for today, and put Delone Carter 21st in my ranks. But I'm ready to have that changed pending news. My supposition is simply based on logic...if the guy rested a week and then hurt himself right away again, why would you throw him right back out there again?
what's Jackie Battle's ceiling in a 12 teamer? RB2? Flex guy?
Christopher Harris (11:48 AM)
Hi, Bobby. Once everyone's off bye, I think Battle's ceiling is as a RB2, but he's likelier to fall in flexland. The best thing he has going for him is touches. Thomas Jones is still getting looks, but Battle is the main guy, and that's valuable. But I don't think he's a particularly special player.
Has Darren Spoles reached 'must-start" status?
Christopher Harris (11:49 AM)
Hi, JJ. I'm stubborn, but even I have to admit that he has. He's a PPR monster, for sure, and in games like Sunday night, boy, they just keep giving him the rock. (It didn't hurt that Ingram got hurt.) It's hard not to expect another blowout against the Rams this week, which means more ball control and more Sproles. I rated him 13th among RBs this week.
Battle for Hernandez a fair deal?
Christopher Harris (11:49 AM)
Hi, Rob. If you're getting Hernandez, I think you win that deal.
Tough one. PPR. Maclin or Wallace ROS?
Christopher Harris (11:50 AM)
Hi, Steve. Yeah, I understand why it's tough because of the PPR, but I think I still take Wallace. You're right, he's not going to get to 80 catches or whatever. But boy, he's a deep-threat machine.
R Rice (what was that???)
Christopher Harris (11:51 AM)
I got absolutely *roasted* by Rice Monday night, too. Killed me. But no, I think it was just one of those nights. The fumbles (he really only fumbled once, but the Ravens had to waste a challenge getting another fumble call overturned) were vexing, but this isn't a guy who fumbles, so you have to give him a pass there. And they just didn't give him enough touches. (Maybe they were teaching him a lesson because of the fumbles?) I think things turn around in a major way this week.
Buy low on Ray Rice? Tebow and Murray enough?
Christopher Harris (11:52 AM)
Hi, Kevin. It's hard for me to weigh in on what's "enough," because it simply depends on what the Rice owner in your league will accept. I would do that deal in a heartbeat, though. Yes, buy low on Rice, if he can truly be said to be "low" right now.
Alex Smith (Cali)
How do i look this weke against the browns?
Christopher Harris (11:53 AM)
Well, y'know, like Alex Smith. I just don't trust the guy. I have him 20th among QBs. The Niners are winning, but it ain't because of the fantasy excellence of the former No. 1 overall pick.
Dave (Detroit Rock City)
Play Ponder or Hill if Stafford sits? Playing the Stafford owner so I hope he is out.
Christopher Harris (11:53 AM)
Hi, Dave. I'd play Hill over Ponder, if that happens.
Am I crazy for playing Fred Davis over DeSean Jackson as my flex in a PPR league? My starting TE is Aaron Hernandez.
Christopher Harris (11:54 AM)
Hi, Perry. Not crazy. In a PPR it's defensible. Of course, Jackson tends to burn the Cowboys, and the Eagles will be raring to go in a really emotional game. I have to admit I'd probably go feast-or-famine with D-Jax. But if you're simply in "safe" mode with that flex spot, trying to get some guaranteed points, Davis might be a good call.
Bizzaro Chris Harris (NPSE Offices)
Can you please explain Sidney Rice this week over Antonio Brown? Is it the TD potential?
Christopher Harris (11:56 AM)
Well, no, it's the fact that he's a No. 1 receiver and I'm not punishing him for the Charlie Whitehurst Factor last week. Brown was terrific versus the Cardinals, but dude, he had 3 catches for a combined 39 yards in the previous two games combined. I like Brown, but let's not paint him as some kind of sure thing when Mike Wallace is around....
Thoughts on Shiancoe ROY?
Christopher Harris (11:57 AM)
My thoughts are: bleh. He's topped 50 yards once this year and has two TDs. I'm not loving him.
Thoughts on Hillis ROS?
Christopher Harris (11:58 AM)
A tougher question. Wish I knew. There are many things in play here: His contract, his health, Hardesty.... My gut tells me he'll be the most valuable Browns RB going forward, and it sounds like he's got an OK chance of playing this week. But there's also a pretty good chance he's looking at the front end of a committee. I think he's top 20. But nowhere close to top 10.
Christopher Harris (11:59 AM)
All right...one more, and I have to get writing.
LeGarrette Blount (Bye-land)
Thoughts on me ROS?
Christopher Harris (12:00 PM)
I think the fact that the Bucs are looking for practice squadders and/or free agents doesn't necessarily mean Blount won't be ready for Week 9, but it isn't *great* news. They're probably just trying to find viable RB3s behind Blount and Kregg Lumpkin, and the fact is that Lumpkin has never shown anything close to every-down-back ability. I think Blount plays next week. But I'm not positive. Once he's in there, he's top-20 material. He's OK. He's not great.
Christopher Harris (12:02 PM)
OK, gang. Thank you very much for making this unusual (for me) Wednesday morning chat a blast. I'm sorry I'm not able to answer every question (we had way over 2,000 in this hour), but I promise I'm not big-timing you. It's just hard to get to all the questions I want to. I'm very appreciative for your interest and support, and I know I wouldn't get to do this great job without you. So thank you. You can follow me at http://www.twitter.com/writerboyESPN, and friend me at http://www.facebook.com/writerboy. Thank you again, and have a great day. (And remember: Tristan Cockcroft will be chatting this afternoon!)