Monday Night Week 2 Fantasy Breakdown: St. Louis Rams @ New York Giants
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St. Louis Rams (Rams Schedule)
Opponent Defensive Ranks
New York Giants Rush Defense – 2011: Yards Allowed/Game T-9th (74 Yds/Gm) - TDs Allowed T-15th (1)
New York Giants Pass Defense – 2011: Yards Allowed/Game 18th (258 Yds/Gm) – TDs Allowed T-14th (2)
St. Louis Offensive Cast
Sam Bradford (QB Week 2 Ranking: No. 20)
2011 Season: 17/30 – for 188 yards & 0 TDs
It looks like Bradford will be okay enough to play this week against the Giants, and boy will the Rams need him. Losing slot-receiver Danny Amendola for awhile was undoubtedly a huge blow for this up-and-coming team, but double that up with the likely loss of their workhorse, Steven Jackson (at least for this week), and you might say they are in just a little bit of trouble.
Steven Jackson (RB Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: Two carries for 56 yards & one TD II 0 receptions for 0 yards & 0 TDs
Jackson (quad injury, questionable) will likely be on the sidelines this Monday night. It’s possible he still suits up, but after missing practice all week, I don’t believe the Rams coaching staff would be so careless as to risk injury by putting him out there.
Cadillac Williams (RB Week 2 Ranking: No. 29)
2011 Season: 19 carries for 91 yards & 0 TDs || Five receptions for 49 yards & 0 TDs
With Steven Jackson on the sidelines last weekend, Caddy filled in nicely to the tune of 140 total yards (19-for-91 rushing) on 24 touches. S-Jax should be out again this Monday night, so it looks like Williams will take the reins yet again.
I’m not sure he does as well against the Giants front-seven, though; especially if Justin Tuck returns. However, if you’re in a bind, Cadillac could take you around the block for a week.
Mike Sims-Walker (WR Week 2 Ranking: No. 30)
With the aforementioned inactives this weekend, someone will have to step up for the Rams tonight. My call is Mike Sims-Walker. The Giants secondary is basically patchwork at this point so someone on the Rams should be able to exploit the problem-area. It could be Brandon Gibson, but my money is on the guy with all the talent and size in the world.
Brandon Gibson (WR Week 2 Ranking: No. 45)
2011 Season: Three receptions for 50 yards & 0 TDs
Gibson will have a nice opportunity to show fantasy owners what he’s made of this week, but I still wouldn’t expect too much seeing how the Rams spread the ball around in this offense. He will have a chance to put up some numbers, but with Gibson having a slight butterfingers problem; Bradford could lose confidence in him early and forget about him for the rest of the game.
Greg Salas (WR Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: One reception for 21 yards & 0 TDs
Supposedly, the rookie Salas will take over in the slot for Amendola this week, and if so, that could mean a bunch of targets/receptions for the kid. At 6’1”, 209 pounds, he’s a far different player than little Danny, but it's the injury-riddled Giants secondary, so it might not matter. Expect a decent showing for the Rams 2011 fourth-round pick.
Danario Alexander (WR Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: 0 receptions for 0 yards & 0 TDs
Danny Amendola (WR Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: Five receptions for 45 yards & 0 TDs
Amendola (dislocated elbow) is a gutsy kid who will probably make it back on the field far before anybody thinks he should, but he’ll still be out for at least this week.
Lance Kendricks (TE Week 2 Ranking: No. 14)
2011 Season: One reception for 18 yards & 0 TDs
For being the fantasy darling of the 2011 preseason, Kendricks regular season debut was plain awful. Five targets, one catch and two drops for 18 yards is NOT the way to start a career, but it could have been worse.
He could have been amongst the slew of Rams players who went down to injury in Week One but instead, he’ll be one of the guys they’ll depend on to pick up the slack against the Giants tonight. I expect a much better second game out of Lance this week.
New York Giants (Giants Schedule)
Opponent Defensive Ranks
St. Louis Rush Defense – 2011: Yards Allowed/Game 32nd (236 Yds/Gm) - TDs Allowed T-15th (1)
St. Louis Pass Defense – 2011: Yards Allowed/Game 8th (167 Yds/Gm) – TDs Allowed T-14th (2)
New York Giants Offensive Cast
Eli Manning (QB Week 2 Ranking: No. 22)
2011 Season: 18/32 – for 268 yards & 0 TDs
Eli had a rough fantasy outing in Week One but should be able to do a little better tonight against a banged-up Rams secondary. The Giants will probably turn to the run quite a bit in this game to take the pressure off of Eli, but I still expect at least 200 yards and a TD regardless.
Ahmad Bradshaw (RB Week 2 Ranking: No. 14)
2011 Season: 13 carries for 44 yards & one TD || One reception for 10 yards & 0 TDs
The Giants realize their passing game isn’t quite up to snuff yet, so in an effort to take the pressure off of Manning, they’ll turn to the run more than usual this weekend against the Rams.
The New Meadowlands Stadium can be a very hostile and inspiring environment; factors which usually get Bradshaw up to play his best games. If they continue to feed him the ball in most every situation, he could bust out for a top-ten fantasy performance tonight against a banged up St. Louis D.
Brandon Jacobs (RB Week 2 Ranking: No. 30)
2011 Season: Six carries for 29 yards & 0 TDs || 0 receptions for 0 yards & 0 TDs
The Giants will be going back to a grind-it-out approach for awhile in order to take the pressure off of Manning, so Jacobs could start to see an increased workload as soon as tonight.
Surprisingly, the big fella only received six carries (for 29 yards) in the game against the Redskins last weekend, but considering the Giants lost, my guess is they’ll change it up a bit and give the Juggernaut his due. He looked awesome in the preseason and could end up shocking a few people this evening.
Hakeem Nicks (WR Week 2 Ranking: No. 11)
2011 Season: Seven receptions for 122 yards & 0 TDs
The Giants can’t afford to go 0-2 to start off the year in this tough NFC East division, so look for them to do whatever it takes to win this game. Nicks is dealing with a bum knee right now, but if he can play, he will, and he’ll go all out against a banged up Rams secondary.
Mario Manningham (WR Week 2 Ranking: No. 27)
2011 Season: Four receptions for 49 yards & 0 TDs
I DO, however, believe they will turn it around, and it could start tonight against the Rams. St. Louis has a beaten up secondary at the moment and with the Giants playing at home in New York tonight, you can bet the sparks will be flying. Also, if Nicks ends up sitting this one out, Manningham will be Eli’s clear-cut WR1 for the week.
Domenik Hixon (WR Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: Two receptions for 21 yards & 0 TDs
Hixon will really only be a viable fantasy option if Nicks can’t go, so check the news coming out of New York before you even think of using him.
Jake Ballard (TE Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: Two receptions for 59 yards & 0 TDs
Ballard will get the call at tight end again this week with Beckum nursing a hamstring injury. The 6’6”, 275-pound TE had his first two career catches for 59 yards in Week One, but will likely be used more as blocker tonight.
Travis Beckum (TE Week 2 Ranking: Not Ranked)
2011 Season: 0 receptions for 0 yards & 0 TDs
Beckum (hamstring) has been ruled out for a second straight week, so keep him on your bench once again (as if you were going to start him anyway).
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