Fantasy Football Week 8

Matt Lichtenstadter ('12)/ Eastside Staff

How was your week 7? For me, it was bad, very bad actually. These next 2 weeks are going to be tough with the 6 teams on byes, so your waiver wire pickups will be huge for these next 2 weeks.

Byes: ATL, BAL, CHI, CLE, NYG, PHI

Who to Start:

QB Matt Cassel (KC) vs. BUF: He’s been a good spot starter for those who’ve needed him against porous secondaries in the last 2 weeks. He’ll be useful in that same position this week, against Buffalo, who gives up tons of points to fantasy QB’s.

RB Ryan Torain (WSH) vs. DET: Who again? The new Redskins running back, and he’s been a great starter against bad rush D’s. That will continue against Detroit, who doesn’t stop the run very well, and gives up tons of fantasy points to RB’s.

WR Pierre Garcon (IND) vs. HOU MON: He’s been bitten by the injury bug this year, and with Dallas Clark and Austin Collie out of commission, he should see tons of action against a very bad Houston secondary.

WR Dez Bryant (DAL) vs. JAX: Ignore the Jon Kitna factor for a moment to see that the Jaguars secondary may be one of the worst in league history. 6 different safety combinations in 7 games have provided tasty matchups for wideouts, and that will stay the same for Dez Bryant.

TE Brandon Pettigrew (DET) vs. WSH: With Matt Stafford seeing his first action since week 1 due to injury, Pettigrew should finally see a bigger share of the Detroit passing pie, and it does help that Washington’s D allows a ton of yards.

DEF New England vs. MIN: Either way if Brett Favre is out or not, the Patriots D has looked pretty good all year as a fantasy option, and with Favre turning it over and limping or Tarvaris Jackson starting, this matchup is very enticing.

Who to Sit:

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ) vs. GB: He’s had his bye week, and he did have a great stretch from weeks 2-4, but he has struggled of late in his last 2 games, and that won’t help him much against a Green Bay pass D that has allowed 8 pass TD’s all season.

RB Ryan Mathews (SD) vs. TEN: I know he’s a great running back, and has star written all over him, but he’s seen less than 10 carries per game since week 4, due to Mike Tolbert and Jacob Hester. Until he sees more carries, bench him.

WR Donald Driver (GB) vs. NYJ: He’s been nagged by an injured quad and his streak of 135 games with a catch was broken last week against Minnesota. It should be noted he’s facing a rested Jets pass D also, which doesn’t help.

WR Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. DEN LONDON: He has either been awesome or awful for fantasy owners this year, with 1 game showing up and another seeming like he was injured. Now that he lost Alex Smith and David Carr to injuries, he now has Troy Smith to help him out. You can see why he should be benched.

TE Jeremy Shockey (NO) vs. PIT: He hasn’t had big games for New Orleans since week 5, 81 yards in that stretch, and it doesn’t help him that he’ll be facing the Steelers. Only way he does well if New Orleans voodoo affects that Steelers D on Halloween.

DEF San Francisco vs. DEN LONDON: This was a highly touted fantasy D in many drafts this year, and they’ve been the only part of the Niners team that has been somewhat decent for fantasy this year. Avoid them in London, because points get put up gangbusters at Wembley.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 8:

QB Jon Kitna (DAL) vs. JAX: Remember I mentioned the Jon Kitna factor earlier? That may turn you off if you have no other option this week. But remember this: he made Roy Williams a pro bowl receiver in 2007 with Detroit, and he is facing Jacksonville.

RB LeGarrette Blount (TB) vs. ARZ: He’s seen a lot more action in the Tampa backfield in the past couple of weeks, and as long as he doesn’t punch anyone in red, he should be a good option, against a bad Cardinals rush D.

WR Steve Johnson (BUF) vs. KC: Who is he? He’s Buffalo’s 2nd receiver now, and he’s played very well in the last 2 games for the Bills. He’s scored 1 TD each of his last 4 games. Despite the cries of “It’s Buffalo!” crooning in my ear, he is a very favorable option this week.

Good Luck in Week 8!