Fantasy Football Week 9: Waiver Wire Wonders at Running Back
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A few high profile RBs (Adrian Peterson and Maurice Jones-Drew) will be sipping Dom P on their recliners this week which means some of you might be forced to patrol the waiver wire in search of replacements.
The Week 9 byes include Detroit, Carolina, Minnesota and Jacksonville.
There are many bumps and bruises to monitor heading into Week 9.
Darren McFadden (foot), Ahmad Bradshaw (foot), Willis McGahee (hand), Peyton Hillis (hamstring) and Felix Jones (ankle) will also likely be listed as questionable heading into this Sunday.
In Dallas, head coach Jason Garrett has hinted at a running back by committee once Felix returns, so the clock is ticking for DeMarco Murray owners to get value for him in a trade (sell high!).
This week we profile a few RBs that could provide adequate numbers if you are in need of an injury replacement or bye week fill-in.
Last week we recommended Bernard Scott for his one week start, but he can now be safely cut as Cedric Benson returns to the lineup after his one-game suspension.
Also be sure to check out the FFspin Sunday Morning Chat from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., where we will tackle your last-minute fantasy football questions, including starts/sits, injury updates, keeper questions, etc. Set a reminder and reserve your spot at the link above.
Javon Ringer: (CIN, @ CAR, @ ATL, TB)
(The games in parenthesis are the next for games for the team.)
We mentioned last week that if CJ2K continued his struggles against the lowly Colts defense it would be time to cut bait on his fantasy prospects for 2011.
The former 2,000 yard rusher (2009) put up yet another clunker finishing with 14 carries for 34 yards and has been consistently bad for all but one week (101 yards in Week 4 against Cleveland).
Conversely, third year back Javon Ringer (fifth round pick in 2009 out of Michigan State) finished with 102 total yards, as he took over the lead role in the fourth quarter with the Titans protecting a lead.
Head coach Mike Munchak announced Chris Johnson will continue to start but he also stated that they’ll go with a hot hand approach giving Ringer solid value down the stretch.
On the season, the 5'9'' 207 pound Ringer has 35 carries for 122 yards (mediocre 3.5 YPC) and has added 16 catches for 122 yards.
Poor run blocking is part of the blame for CJ2K’s brutal start, but Ringer could be primed to take over a starting job as the Titans look to jump start their 32nd ranked run game (averaging only 70 YPG).
Kendall Hunter: (@ WAS, NYG, ARZ, @ BAL)
In his first NFL start against a forgiving Eagles defense, the rookie for Okie State topped 100 total yards and flashed impressive elusiveness.
Through seven games (in a limited role), Hunter has 40 carries for 192 yards (impressive 4.8 YPC).
Frank Gore has missed 10 games over the last four seasons making Hunter a must own handcuff .
He is a dual player threat much like Gore and could be a solid start if and when Gore misses a game or two.
We had Hunter ranked as the No. 10 rookie RB, but he’s climbing the charts as one of the best RBs from the 2011 draft class.
Roy Helu: (SF, @ MIA, DAL, @ SEA)
Despite the presence of weekly Shanahanigans—we expected the the season ending injury to Tim Hightower to clear things up.
As the Week 8 shutout loss to Buffalo proved—this team will be playing from behind most weeks, which should lead to increased snaps for rookie Roy Helu, since the coaching staff favors him in passing situations.
Helu didn’t see a carry in Week 8, but was still on the field more than the less than effective Ryan Torain (averaging 1.6 YPC since his one productive performance in Week 4 in St Louis).
Rookie Roy Helu (Nebraska) was selected in the fourth round (105 overall) and began to pay dividends in Week 2 as he totaled 10 carries for 74 yards and added three catches for 38 yards.
Helu has been an afterthought since the emergence of Ryan Torain, but in Week 7 we had another Helu sighting, as he led the Redskins backfield with 33 snaps with the Redskins in catchup mode against the Panthers (Torain had two carries for negative-five yards).
There’s no telling what Mike Shanahan's 8-ball will tell him to do this week, but Helu seems to be more trusted in pass protection than Ryan Torain, which could very well lead to the rookie leading the backfield in snaps most weeks.
The addition of Tashard Choice this week has us taking a wait and see approach before recommending starting any member of the Washington backfield.
Chris Ogbonnaya: (@HOU, STL, JAC, @ CIN)
The third down specialist from the University of Texas could be in line for a spot start this week with Montario Hardesty expected to miss multiple weeks (calf injury) and Peyton Hillis continuing to battle a hamstring injury that sidelined him for Week 8.
Ogbonnaya is worth considering in PPR leagues, as he’s amassed 10 catches for 67 yards over the past two weeks.
In Week 9, the Browns face Houston (a team that cut Ogbonnaya in training camp so his motivation should be high despite his limited overall skill set).
Even if he gets a start, temper your expectations, as the Texans run defense has been solid and are allowing the sixth lowest fantasy PPG to opposing RBs.
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