Ramses Barden: Breakout Game Doesn't Make Giants WR Long-Term Fantasy Option

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer ISeptember 20, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 20:  Ramses Barden #13 of the New York Giants runs for yards after the catch in the first half against Luke Kuechly #59 of the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on September 20, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

New York Giants receiver Ramses Barden exploded in Hakeem Nicks' absence on Thursday against the Carolina Panthers, catching nine balls for 138 yards.

But don't go rushing to the waiver wire just yet, fantasy football fanatics.

Before replacing Nicks on Thursday, Barden had one catch for 24 yards this season. Last season, he caught nine balls for 94 yards in eight games for the Giants. 

Sure, you could think of him as a Laurent Robinson or a Kevin Ogletree (a receiver who comes out of nowhere to be a fantasy-football gem), but the fact of the matter is he won't have enough opportunities to do so moving forward.

That's because Nicks, who will have 10 days to rest before next week, will likely play in the Giants' next game against the Philadelphia Eagles. He was actually expected to play against the Panthers this week before the Giants pulled the plug at the last second on Wednesday.

It's nothing against Barden, who showed some skills on Thursday, but once he's dropped back down on the depth chart, he won't receive enough looks to be a major factor for fantasy owners. With Nicks and star Victor Cruz manning the starting positions at wideout, Barden is not going to miraculously take one of their spots.

While I don't think Barden has to worry about rookie Rueben Randle taking many targets away from him (Randle has one catch in three games), I don't think it will matter anyway. New York's No. 3 receiver last season, Mario Manningham, had 523 yards and four touchdowns in 2011-12, and he's a better receiver than Barden. That's not a whole lot of production.

Pass on Barden unless Nicks' injury proves to be more limited down the road.

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