Each week we give a player from each division a “Player of the Week” honor. In an attempt to not cram the same info down your throat you might find elsewhere, we are going to try to focus on players who weren’t draft day all-stars. In some cases they won’t even be rostered in redraft leagues, but guys that are worth stashing in dynasty leagues. We are going to focus on guys that have yielded the greatest return on your investment. You don’t need to be told Andre Johnson had a great day. He was drafted in such a spot that it was expected. Same with Julio Jones, Steve Smith (Car), and Arian Foster. That’s not to say that we won’t honor a truly elite performance, especially from rookies.
As part of a group collaboration, members of the DLF Staff have chosen to represent a division and will be selecting which players will be getting the “gold star” for the week. As an added bonus, I will also include the most impressive IDP performances of the week for each division, because defensive players need love too!
Here is who is will be nominating players for each division:
AFC West - Steve Wyremski
AFC East - Paymon Shokoohi
AFC North - Eric Olinger
AFC South - Tim Stafford
NFC West - The FF Ghost
NFC East - Jarrett Behar
NFC North - Jacob Feldman
NFC South - Ryan McDowell
Donald Jones, WR Bills
Unlike last week, there were a few good candidates for week ten. I chose Donald Jones because of his cumulative fantasy impact recently. His six receptions for 74 yards and one touchdown day marked the third consecutive game where he’s scored in double digits in PPR formats. He’s also had consecutive games where’s he’s received nine plus targets. Jones has a pretty favorable schedule going forward and can quietly help fantasy owners as a WR3-4 option down the stretch.
IDP- Devin McCourty, CB NEP
McCourty had a nice game against Buffalo with four solo tackles, four assists and an interception, but that’s not the reason I picked him. I picked him because I expect his tackle numbers to increase due to the presence of the newly acquired, fresh off suspension, knucklehead, Aqib Talib. Having a corner with shut down potential playing opposite him, McCourty should expect to be targeted heavily in the upcoming weeks and he should see his per game tackle numbers approach those of his rookie season.
Cecil Shorts III, WR JAX
It’s deja vu all over again. I told you before Halloween to go get you some Cecil Shorts III, did you listen? Probably not. And hopefully neither did your leaguemates. If by the grace of the fantasy gods he’s still on your waiver wire, please pick him up. He needs a home.
IDP- Darius Butler, CB IND
Obviously, the Colts cannot play Blaine Gabbert and the inept Jaguars every week. Still, his four solo tackles, two interceptions, and one touchdown were impressive. Butler will continue to see starter’s snaps due to a season ending toe injury to Jerraud Powers. Butler is a name to monitor, but is highly unlikely to repeat Thursday’s performance. Heck of a game, though.
Mohamed Sanu, WR CIN
The rookie out of Rutgers has slowly but surely seen his playing time increase each week and with a vacant spot at the WR2 in Cincinnati, Sanu has made the strongest case to fill it. The Big East’s all time reception leader is a big bodied receiver in the mold of TJ Houshmandzadeh and offers the skill set to compliment AJ Green and Andrew Hawkins. Better than that though, he offers offensive coordinator Jay Gruden a versatile weapon that can not only catch, but run in the backfield, and make throws on trick plays, which he proved in week three versus Washington when he threw a 73 yard touchdown to AJ Green. Sanu is a great dynasty stash for deep league PPR guys with some patience.
IDP- Lawrence Timmons, ILB PIT
I am not a fan of Timmons in IDP leagues, I think his one big statistical season was a fluke and he is drafted based on name value every year since. Having said that, he is a much better real life linebacker than fantasy asset, but with the injury to Ben Roethlisberger this defense will continue to step up and win ball games like they did Monday night versus Kansas City. Timmons had four solos, three assists and the game clinching interception in over time. If the Steelers are forced to start Byron Leftwich with his Tim Wakefield-like windup, this offense will be neutered and the defense will be on the field a lot against Baltimore and Cleveland the next three weeks.
Marcel Reece, RB OAK
There was quiet chatter throughout the offseason and early in the year that few people paid attention to. It centered around the fact that Reece could be used as a mismatch type of player given his size and speed combination. With Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson on the shelf, Reece got the opportunity to play the lead back role and caught seven balls for 56 yards on nine targets and 77% of the team’s snaps forcing himself into the fantasy spotlight. With McFadden iffy again this week, he’s expected to shoulder the load yet again. Reece is already 27, but could represent an interesting PPR option going forward even when McFadden returns. This past week wasn’t the first time he was active in the passing game as it was the fourth game of the year with more than 50 yards receiving and third game with eight or more targets.
IDP- Derrick Johnson, ILB KCC
It has been a while since I had seen Derrick Johnson play like he did against the Steelers on Monday Night Football. On a team full of immature, delusional, undisciplined showboats, Johnson was a one man wrecking crew. His 12 solo tackles and one assist almost willed the Chiefs over the heavily favored Steelers. Johnson was quick to diagnose plays and practically lived in the backfield. Watching the rest of the team wave fingers and celebrate just showed why this team is 1-8 on the year.
Felix Jones, RB DAL
Shaking off all of the Lance Dunbar hype, Jones finally responded with a decent game in week ten against the struggling Eagles with 16 carries, 71 yards, three receptions, 22 yards, and one receiving touchdown. On his 11 yard touchdown reception, Jones showed good vision and broke tackles on his way into the end zone. With DeMarco Murray looking questionable at best to return for Week 11, Jones looks like a reasonable RB2 against the Browns and their 24th ranked rushing defense if Murray is indeed out.
IDP- Bruce Carter, ILB DAL
I love Bruce Carter in dynasty IDP leagues and thanks to the injury to Sean Lee, I love Bruce Carter in redraft IDP leagues. On Sunday, Carter was on full display as he racked up ten total tackles, all solo, and two for a loss against divisional foe Philadelphia. I hope you all listened as the IDP Crew here at DLF told you to get this second year stud. The talent is obvious, health and opportunity were the only things holding him back from IDP studness.
Greg Olsen, TE CAR
Panthers tight end Greg Olsen exploded this week, hauling in eight catches for 102 yards and Carolina’s only two scores of the day as they faced the Denver Broncos. Olsen has been often overlooked as a fantasy option at the tight end position, but he has quietly had a very productive year. He is currently ranked as the TE7 on the year and has outproduced many tight ends that were much more hyped entering the season. As quarterback Cam Newton continues to rely on Olsen, he will maintain that status as a weekly starter at the tight end position.
IDP- Kroy Biermann, DE ATL
During the Monday night game, Jay Glazer broke the news that Atlanta was releasing Ray Edwards a year and a half after signing him to a very lucrative free agent contract (one they surely regret). The main beneficiary is Kroy Biermann who will now line up across from the revitalized John Abraham. Biermann should be picked up immediately due to playing time and the fact the Falcons play the Cardinals and their sieve like offensive line. He could have a BIG game this week.
Jarius Wright, WR MIN
When it comes to standouts in the NFC North this week, there isn’t much to talk about. We could always remind you about the unhuman talents of Calvin Johnson (12/207/1) and Adrian Peterson (27/171/1 with a 2 pt conversion). Aside from that, it was pretty slim pickings, so this week lets take a look at a player that has people talking a little bit, Jarius Wright.
In my opinion, Wright is the very rare wide receiver handcuff. He has a similair, though slightly less athletic, skill set to Percy Harvin and fills the same role in the Vikings’ offense. I highly doubt that he will be on the field very often when Harvin is on the field, but if Harvin ever misses extended time or ends up being traded due to contract issues, Wright could step up in a big way and produce solid WR2 numbers. For those of you in deeper leagues, he is someone to consider as a long term prospect or at least keep an eye on if Harvin’s health becomes a question.
IDP- Tim Jennings, CB CHI
This is defense is almost ridiculous. Matt Schaub came into Sunday night’s game with four interceptions through eight games, and Jennings picked him off twice and defended another pass. With the possibility of facing a second year quarterback still wet behind the ears this Monday in Colin Kaepernick, every Bears IDP should be active in what could be a low scoring game possibly decided by a defensive touchdown.
Danny Amendola, WR STL
This week saw the first tie in nearly four years and, of course, it had to make the NFC West more confusing. One of the player in this match-up however was head and shoulders above the rest of the NFC West this week, and for a number of reasons. The NFC West Player of the Week goes to Danny Amendola who recorded 11 receptions for 102 yards. This performance is impressive on its own merits, but when you consider that this was Amendola’s first game back since the dislocation of his clavicle then this feat become just that much more impressive.
IDP- Bruce Irvin, DE SEA
Elite sack producing defensive linemen are so hard to find, both in real life and in fantasy leagues. Bruce Irvin looks to be both. Now up to seven sacks on the season after chipping two more in on Sunday versus the Jets pathetic excuse of an offense, Irvin looks to be everything Pete Carroll had envisioned. He definitely looks to be a scheme fit and piece you want to own on dynasty teams.