by Ray Kuhn
This week we are back to just two teams on byes, Atlanta and Miami, and thankfully the injuries are at a minimum. Of course there are some health concerns, and David Wilson scheduled to play on Thursday doesn’t help, but fantasy owners should not be too negatively impacted by injuries this week. However, there is still the greater issue of running backs underperforming their draft status that must be dealt with. Once again, questions are abounding, so let’s get right into the rankings.
|1. Adrian Peterson – Minnesota Vikings – at Carolina|
|2. Jamaal Charles -Kansas City Chiefs – vs. Oakland|
|3. Matt Forte -Chicago Bears – vs. New York Giants|
|4. Arian Foster – Houston Texans – vs. St. Louis|
|5. Ray Rice – Baltimore Ravens – vs. Green Bay|
|6. DeMarco Murray – Dallas Cowboys – vs. Washington|
|7. Marshawn Lynch -Seattle Seahawks – vs. Tennessee|
|8. LeSean McCoy – Philadelphia Eagles – at Tampa Bay|
|9. Alfred Morris – Washington Redskins – at Dallas|
|10. Doug Martin – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – vs. Philadelphia|
|11. Reggie Bush – Detroit Lions – at Cleveland|
|12. Knowshon Moreno – Denver Broncos – vs. Jacksonville|
|13. Trent Richardson – Indianapolis Colts – at San Diego|
|14. CJ Spiller – Buffalo Bills – vs. Cincinnati|
|15. D’Angelo Williams – Carolina Panthers – at Arizona|
|16. Frank Gore – San Francisco 49ers – vs. Houston|
|17. Darren Sproles – New Orleans Saints – at New England|
|18. Chris Johnson – Tennessee Titans – at Seattle|
|19. Le’Veon Bell – Pittsburgh Steelers – at New York Jets|
|20. Pierre Thomas – New Orleans Saints – at New England|
|21. Danny Woodhead – San Diego Chargers – vs. Indianapolis|
|22. Giovani Bernard – Cincinnati Bengals – at Buffalo|
|23. Eddie Lacy – Green Bay Packers – at Baltimore|
|24. Rashad Jennings – Oakland Raiders – at Kansas City|
|25. Zac Stacy – St. Louis Rams – at Houston|
|26. David Wilson – New York Giants – at Chicago|
|27. Maurice Jones-Drew – Jacksonville Jaguars – at Denver|
|28. Willis McGahee – Cleveland Browns – vs. Detroit|
|29. Andre Ellington – Arizona Cardinals – at San Francisco|
|30. Stevan Ridley – New England Patriots – vs. New Orleans|
|31. Ryan Matthews – San Diego Chargers – vs. Indianapolis|
|32. Joique Bell – Detroit Lions – at Cleveland|
|33. Fred Jackson – Buffalo Bills – vs. Cincinnati|
|34. Bilal Powell – New York Jets – vs. Pittsburgh|
|35. Brandon Jacobs – New York Giants – at Chicago|
|36. LeGarrette Blount – New England Patriots – vs. New Orleans|
|37. Donald Brown – Indianapolis Colts – at San Diego|
|38. BenJarvus Green-Ellis – Cincinnati Bengals – at Buffalo|
|39. Bernard Pierce – Baltimore Ravens – vs. Green Bay|
|40. Montee Ball – Denver Broncos – vs. Jacksonville|
- Before he got hurt, David Wilson might have been on his way to making up for his early season struggles. Granted we are setting the bar low here though, as Wilson had only managed 16 yards on six carries before leaving with a neck injury, but he did find the end zone. As of Monday, Wilson said he was still experiencing some tingling in the neck and he did not practice, leading to the Giants to re-sign Da’Rel Scott on Monday. The Giants have a quick turnaround playing on Thursday, so I would certainly have an alternative to Wilson lined up.
- It took four weeks for Darryl Richardson to lose his starting job, but it happened this week. Zac Stacy got the start last week, and he did not disappoint carrying the ball 14 times for 78 yards. Rams’ coach Jeff Fisher has already named Stacy the starter for this week and he also alluded to wanting Stacy to have gotten even more carries. The rookie averaged 5.6 yards a carry and showed explosiveness previously unseen from the Rams backfield.
- Doug Martin has been a disappointment this season, along with the entire Buccaneers offense. Perhaps with the bye week they can get their act together. Mike Glennon now has had an extra week to get comfortable with the offense, and hopefully that will benefit Martin as well. The problem, though, is that Martin is only averaging 3.4 yards per carry and had just one touchdown all season. That should not preclude you from starting your first round pick this week for better or worse.
- Stevan Ridley is another running back having a disappointing season. This week Ridley missed the game due to a thigh/knee injury, but he should be back as the injury doesn’t appear to be major. Replacing Ridley was a dual effort between LeGarrette Blount and Branden Bolden. Blount had some success carrying the ball 12 times for 51 yards, although he did lose a fumble. Bolden’s 40 snaps were 18 more than Blount’s, but only touched the ball 11 times for a total of 64 yards. This is a situation to potentially stay away from, but you have to think that if Ridley plays he will lead the Patriots in touches.
- It may be time to make sure Andre Ellington is owned in all leagues. This week Ellington and Rashad Mendenhall each played 30 snaps, but Ellington was the more dominating player. I would expect Ellington’s playing time to at least stay at this level, if not increase going forward. The rookie carried the ball seven times for 52 yards while catching another four passes for 31 yards. His backfield mate had ten more carries, but he also gained nine less yards. Ellington is the running back to own here.
- I’m not sure Willis McGahee’s performance should earn him more than a FLEX role, but he did carry the ball 26 times. With Brian Hoyer now out for the season, Cleveland’s offense might regress somewhat and McGahee did only average 2.6 yards per carry against Buffalo. His value was saved by the fact that he scored a touchdown, but I’m not sure you can count on that each week.
- The Lions offense certainly missed Calvin Johnson. Detroit had trouble moving the ball all afternoon against the Packers. After a hot start to the season, Reggie Bush rushed 13 times and was only able to gain 44 yards while catching four passes for another 25 yards. I would not let that sour you on Bush who so far this season is returning first round value.
Make sure to check out all of our Week 6 Rankings: