The 10 Most Reliable Quarterbacks in Fantasy Football

August 22, 2015

I used weight, speed, experience, football IQ, injury history, position norms, and other factors to create a rating system that predicts which fantasy football players are the most reliable.  I call this my SEP Rating as it primarily consist of SCIENCE, EVIDENCE, and PERFORMANCE. I put just a pinch of subjective into these ratings as I believe there are simply some things that you have to assess with your eyes and not through data.  

For the Quarterbacks I ranked 33 players.  The most reliable Quarterback earned a rating of 124 while the least reliable earned a rating of 73.  I rated the players that I expect to be starting caliber and I included the 2 first round draft picks.  Here we go!

Click here to see quarterback rankings 33 through 23. Click here to see rankings 22 through 16. Click here to see quarterback rankings 15 through 11.

“The best ability is availability”-Herm Edwards

 

10. Derek Carr: SEP Rating – 102

derek-carr-raiders
si.com

This may be the only place you will see Derek Carr on a top ten list anywhere on the internet…..at least for now.  In my opinion, Derek Carr played one of the more polished rookie seasons of any QB in recent memory.  Rookies are notorious for making poor decisions that cause them to get sacked or run the ball; both usually end up leading to excess hits, but for Carr this was not the case at all.  In fact when you compare him to his rookie mate Blake Bortles who was sacked 55 times, it is glaring that 55 is the combined total of Derek Carr’s rushes and sacks for last year.  Now I won’t lie and say that I watched every snap of his last year but I saw enough to give him a slight edge on the other young quarterbacks and give him a 3 out 5 for his decision-making and release time as he simply gets rid of the ball quicker than most young QB’s.  I think this only gets better with the addition of his first real number one option in Amari Cooper.   I am not big on studying offensive lines but what I can say is that his offensive line was 5th best at protecting the quarterback and I would attribute about 75% or more of that success to Carr and his veteran like decision-making.  Unless last year was a fluke, I think you can count on Derek Carr to stay on the field as well as produce more this year.

 

9. Andy Dalton: SEP Rating – 102

wikiwand.com
wikiwand.com

Ok I am 2 for 2 now.  Andy Dalton is another QB that won’t be in many top ten fantasy football list.  I actually love this about this list, because to me its more interesting than seeing the same regurgitated list that does not really give you any new information.  How many times can you hear the same names over and over with the order just slightly tweaked based on who had the most recent success. To think that so many people get paid to regurgitate “Brady, Rodgers, Manning, Luck”, or a few years ago “Manning, Brady, Brees”.  Frankly it gets boring to listen to after a while.  Now back to Andy Dalton who only edged Derek Carr by fractions of a point.  I know many of you won’t draft him, but the facts are that he never misses a game, has pretty good size at 220 lbs, and hangs about middle of the road with sacks taken.  Dalton generally gets a bad rap for his post season play, but during the regular season you can count on Dalton to do what he does.  As you can see I spent half the paragraph talking about other QB’s and the second half trying to say something good about Andy Dalton…..I don’t think it worked.  I don’t think many of us will scramble to pick up Andy Dalton based on his quality of play, but the numbers don’t lie….he is at least reliable.

 

8. Eli Manning: SEP Rating – 103

grabpage.info
grabpage.info

The Iron man himself!  That is not an Avengers reference.  For those who are not aware, Eli Manning is following in his brothers foot steps (that is before the neck injury) and has now started 167 regular season games straight, which makes him the current “Iron Man” of the NFL.  Brett Favre holds the all time record with 297 regular season games.  Now we all remember those crazy Superbowl throws from Eli when he escaped 5 or 6 people and made historic throws under duress, and this is the talent that I believe allows Eli to suit up week after week.  Eli runs the ball less that any other quarterback on this list and despite an average offensive line, he is in the bottom half of this list when it comes to  how many times he has been sacked over the past 3 years.  Eli has shown that he can stay healthy with an average line and average receivers and win Superbowl’s.  Now I don’t know what to rank his offensive line this year , but with Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz, Rueben Randle and the addition of a career third down back in Shane Vereen; we may see the best and most reliable Eli Manning we have ever seen.

 

7. Matt Ryan: SEP Rating – 104

publicdomainhut.com
publicdomainhut.com

In some ways Matt Ryan really slips under the radar.  All that Eli Manning/Iron man talk made me notice that Matt Ryan has played 83 games straight.  He earns a near perfect 4 out 5 on our decision-making scoring as he is another quarterback that consistently gets the ball out and avoids taking the big hits.  Matt Ryan makes this list for various objective reasons but instead of looking at that, just look at the 2014 season.  The Falcons loss 80% of their starting lineman and somehow Ryan was only sacked 31 times.  Not only did he lead them to be in the better half of the league in regard to giving up sacks, but he did this while being the 3rd most passing team in the league.  When it comes to reliability you can see that some times it’s the players youth that makes them reliable, sometimes its their size, and for some players it may just be the system they are in, but as we get near the top of the list you will notice that the most reliable quarterbacks are generally the most cerebral quarterbacks.  Matt Ryan may be one of the most under-rated cerebral QB’s in the league today.  If you add in a healthy Julio Jones and at least 9 games in a dome, then it may not get better than Matt Ryan this season.

 

6. Drew Brees: SEP Rating – 105

the2010s.com
the2010s.com

Drew Brees may be the biggest anomaly in this top ten.  Brees represents the only quarterback in this top ten who is under 210 lbs and under 6 foot tall.   Everyone knows that Brees is a small QB but when you look in the recent history of the NFL, there really is no one like him.  When I think of small quarterbacks, I think of Doug Flutie, but he obviously never reached the status of Brees.  I think of Michael Vick who could never stay healthy because of his style of play and his size.  I now even think of Russel Wilson who may end up having a Brees like career in some ways but Brees probably throws more footballs in warm ups than Wilson throws all game.  It is borderline amazing that he can throw so many passes year after year and almost never miss a game.  Drew Brees in fact has thrown the most passes of these QB’s over the past 3 years but yet still finds himself on the bottom half of this list  with sacks taken.  Brees has lost his 2 biggest weapons in Sproles and Graham over the past 2 years and the word on the streets is that the Saints will be converting to a more physical running team.  If this is so, then I believe Brees will be even more reliable.  You would be hard pressed to name a Saints running back before Mark Ingram who was not a Darren Sproles  or Reggie Bush type, and as Brees winds down his career, I believe this is just what he needs….a running game.

 

5.  Tom Brady: SEP Rating – 108

deadspin.com
deadspin.com

Tom Brady is only the second player on this list to get a 5/5 on my decision-making/release time rating and across the board he shows no weaknesses when it comes to reliability (at least not due to on the field issues).  Now we all know there are some other threats to Brady being on the field but I hate that story so much that I refuse to mention it.  Tom Brady is essentially the perfect QB at 225 lbs, with no desire to scramble and get hit but just enough mobility to move in the pocket and evade pressure;  enough talent to get the job done but not so talented that he gets in trouble by extending the play too long; smart enough to read defenses and make the right throw but stupid enough to go crazy face and start head butting offensive linemen really hard!  At this point you should know the stats that matter when it comes to reliability and Tom Brady shines being the 3rd least sacked over the past 3 years.  Ironically the only 2 players who beat him in the sack category have the same last name.  Interestingly, Brady is one of the few this high on the list  who will rush the ball fairly often.  That is somewhat misleading as those who watch the Patriots know those runs are mostly quarterback sneaks.  All in all, if you can make it through the games he will miss due to suspension, Tom Brady is likely the best mix of reliability and greatness on this list.

 

4.  Joe Flacco: SEP Rating – 109

desktopbackgroundsqh.com
desktopbackgroundsqh.com

One of the biggest reasons Joe Flacco makes it so high on this list is his weight.  Most may not think of this when thinking of Flacco, but he is at the very least the second biggest quarterback in the league at 245 lbs.  Despite their listings, I consider Cam Newton to be bigger although they are both listed at the same weight.  So not to make this about Cam, but imagine if Cam Newton stayed in the pocket, made quick decisions, almost never ran the ball, and made his best throw almost every time…..and you would just have imagined Joe Flacco.  Flacco is a little higher on the sack list, but with that type of size, a sack is a completely different type of event for him as compared to an average size quarterback.  I do not dispute Flacco taking a top 5 spot, but I would keep an eye on what the Ravens offensive scheme transitions to with Trestman in, and Kubiak out.  Now it could have very well been Jay Cutler who tainted Marc Trestman’s system, but in many ways Trestman’s system may get Flacco in some riskier situations as compared to the run first style of Gary Kubiak.  On the other hand this may be Flacco’s chance to combine that reliability with a system that allows him to put up flashier stats.

3. Andrew Luck: SEP Rating – 111

si.com
si.com

The Prodigy Andrew Luck is not too far away from Cam and Flacco when it comes to size as he weighs in at 240 lbs.  Luck adds the gift of youth on his side to go with his size and talent, and frankly that is why he is reliable.  He is a big, young, and very talented.  The Indianapolis Colts picked up Frank Gore in efforts of having some semblance of a run game this year which may help manage the little risk that Luck is exposed to by being top 6 in pass attempts, but even if that run game doesn’t work out, Andrew Luck seems to have a body type that can withstand most hits at this age.  Andrew Luck has had no injuries of mention so far, despite being in the top half with taking sacks and with rush attempts.  Those who end up with Luck heading your fantasy team can hope that the combination of maturity and a running game will bring those rankings down closer to the other quarterbacks who occupy the top of this list.  I would have no hesitation with drafting Andrew Luck this year but if his sack and rushing statistics do not begin to conform to the numbers that are more the norm for the great QB’s of the past and the present, we may see that age advantage fly out of the window on one fateful play.

 

2.  Matthew Stafford: SEP Rating – 112

tennisforum.com
tennisforum.com

This list has been full of surprises for me as I would have never thought of Matthew Stafford as one of the most reliable quarterbacks in the league before compiling this data.  Stafford simply does not miss games, is still pretty young at 27, and is a pretty big quarterback at 234 lbs.  I rated him a 3 out 5 when it comes to decision-making, as I have never really felt like I could trust Stafford in a big situation.  As I look at the numbers though, Stafford has only taken 5 more sacks than Drew Brees over the past 3 years and has taken less sacks than Andrew Luck.  When you consider that almost half of his sacks over the past 3 years came last year during a bad season for the Lions offensive line, it makes Stafford look a bit better than I thought.  The Detroit Lions have revamped their offensive line, Stafford has the closest thing to two number one receivers in Megatron and Golden Tate, and for the first time since Barry Sanders the Lions seem to have a talented backfield with the return of Bell and the emergence of Ameer Abdullah.  In the end, I still may not believe in Stafford enough to have this very high reliability ranking make me pick him above many of these guys; but the supporting cast and the objective stats make a good case.  Hopefully you can take my SEP Ratings and blend it with a little Michael Fabiano, Rotoworld, Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, The Fantasy Authority and Matthew Berry to come up with the perfect players for your team.

 

1.  Peyton Manning: SEP Rating – 124

wallpaperusia.com
wallpaperusia.com

This may be surprising for some considering his age and the trending media coverage on Peyton Manning which describes him to be an old man in the twilight of his career who can no longer throw the ball down the field.  But the fact is that Peyton has only had one real injury in his career and aside from that neck injury, he has never missed a game.  Peyton was on his way to breaking Brett Favre’s Iron man record before the end of his Colts tenure was derailed with a neck injury.  He played 208 regular season games straight and with playoff games added in, he made it to 227 games before his streak came to an end.  In my mind, the cervical fusion that Manning underwent in 2011 has no bearing on his current status.  Those who have watched Peyton Manning over the years understand that his arm was never his Ace in the hole and although he does seem to have lost a little arm strength, it is his IQ that has always made him the greatest regular season quarterback of all time.  Now that Peyton is transitioning to an offense that will utilize the run and play action more under Gary Kubiak, Peyton should be even safer than he normally is.  The normal safe that Peyton represents is throwing the 5th most passes and being sacked the absolute least.  Even when Manning does get sacked or hit, his size is deceiving as he weighs in at 230 lbs and 6′ 5″.  Of course Peyton Manning is the 3rd and final QB that gets a 5/5 for his decision-making/release time.  I could poke a few holes in his future by talking about the changes in Denver’s offensive line or that Manning will have to throw on the run in Kubiak’s offense; but it would really be a waste of time.  We will see the same Peyton Manning we have seen forever–lots of passes, very few sacks, and a great regular season.  So you can take Aaron Rodgers and get a few 30 burgers, or pick a running QB like Russel WIlson to get those desired rushing touchdowns and rushing yards at your QB position; but if you want someone who will be there week to week and especially come fantasy playoffs, Peyton Manning is your guy.

 

Stay tuned to TheInjuryReportDoctor.com for my Most Reliable Running Backs and Wide Receivers!

Subscribe (at the bottom left of the page) so you can get post sent straight to your email.

Could Injury Really Cause A Peyton Manning Led Team To Miss The Playoffs?

November 22, 2014

You can type in “NFL injuries” in any search box and get the details of who is in and who is out, that is the easy part.  The more important questions are how long will they really be out? Will they actually play well when they come back?  What players are at highest risk to get hurt next?  How will one injury affect the performance of other players?  Being caught off guard by any of these issues could derail your fantasy line-up at a time where you can not afford any glitches.  For many, playoff time is coming and for you one-day fantasy players, your time is running out to win the big one.  I will discuss which injuries I see coming and which injuries I see going, and more importantly look at all of the angles that will decide whether you win or lose with your lineup.

Lets go by position:

Quarterback

Some of you have been unlucky and lost your starting QB.  Former fantasy owners of Nick Foles and Carson Palmer are the primary victims here.  For those who took the obvious option of picking up Mark Sanchez immediately after Foles got injured–good job!  I’m not too sure on Stanton and definitely would not feel good with him as my QB down the stretch with the vicious schedule that Arizona has remaining.  It is clear that neither of these QB’s (Foles and Palmer) will be back this year, or at least not in time to have a fantasy impact.

If you were not able to get in the Sanchez sweepstakes, then my suggestion would be to look at Shaun Hill as he is now injury free and the Rams have endured a tough schedule that will now lighten up just a little.  Another not so obvious option would be Zach Mettenberger, who I do not think is great by any stretch, but he has a great selection of defenses to face to close the season and a monster arm.  Last but not least is a stretch for most, but I believe Colt McCoy will finish the Washington Redskins season as a starting QB.  McCoy is also not the greatest but he will literally be playing for his NFL career, he has a ton of weapons, and he has good match ups.  I would spend a little time telling you how McCoy gets that job, but if you have a TV, a phone, or any type of electronic device I am sure that you have seen the train wreck that is RG3.

My bet is you can get any of those 3 players today and even if they just sit on your bench while you have another borderline QB playing, you will not end up in the back of the waiver line if they get hot.

peyton-manning-in-cold-weather
Fantasy owners and Peyton Manning may miss the RCA dome as this season goes down the stretch.

As for the great Peyton Manning, he is being hit by the injury bug indirectly.  With his number 1 and 2 running backs out, Julius Thomas’ status being unclear at Tight End, and his number 2 Wide Receiver Emmanuel Sanders just being cleared from concussion protocol; the future Hall of Fame QB may have the deck stacked against him.  Combine the injuries with the fact that his next 4 opponents all currently rank in the top ten for total defense and that 3 out of those 4 games are likely to be played in cold weather, and you may just have given the ingredients for the kryptonite recipe.  The only thing that may be missing is whipping winds and a few snow flurries.  In any case, those who pay close attention know what bothers Peyton.  When he is pushed off his spot, he is obviously uncomfortable.  When he has to hold the ball, he is uncomfortable.  With these defenses and bad weather coming, I project some sub Manning like numbers.  Now I am not talking Alex Smith mediocrity, but chances are that Peyton is carrying your fantasy team in any league play and he is eating up your salary cap in any one-day play; so you absolutely need him to put up Manning like numbers.

While I do not see a day in which I tell you to sit Peyton Manning unless it is for Andrew Luck or Aaron Rodgers, I think Manning owners should prepare for a more conservative output and therefore be aggressive with the remainder of the roster.  For Peyton and the Denver Broncos, I see very little chance of not making the playoffs, but for my fellow fantasy players this tough stretch falls right at a crucial time in regard to fantasy playoffs.  In the end start Peyton as usual, unless you see wind and snow in the forecast; then I may look for one of the QB’s I listed above to hold the fort for one week.  This is the closest I will get to betting against Peyton Manning and frankly it feels a little uncomfortable.  Lets see what he does over the next month.

Running Back

Running Back becomes very important in November and December as many of the outdoor teams will start to slow it down with hand-offs and short dump off passes.  However as these running backs have their workload increased you may also see more injuries.  I predicted way back in the first half of the season that DeMarco Murray would not make it through the entire season and now that its week 12, some may think I was wrong……NOT!  All of you DeMarco Murray owners better have a back up plan, because it’s coming.

Another running back to beware of is Arian Foster.  Earlier this season, I compared Foster to Steven Jackson as he is an oversized back who gets injured regularly.  He is living up to this comparison and if he does not do something different this off-season ( I would suggest some type of Yoga/Pilates blend and a very clean diet), I think you should think long and hard before drafting Foster early.  As you can see, when you need Foster most he will not be there for you.  At this point, I don’t think anyone will get caught off guard with Foster being out as he seems to be on the injury reports on a weekly basis.  The important thing is to not get your hopes up with this “game time decision” talk.  I do not see him making it back in an effective way this week as he is only been out for 2 weeks with a groin injury that should likely take at least 3 weeks to heal.   We explained the nagging groin strain a few weeks ago when predicting Monte Ball needed 3-6 weeks off before returning.  As most of you know, Monte Ball did sit out for 6 weeks and then re-injured his groin on his first game back.  Hopefully that lets you and Arian Foster know how serious this injury can be. The easy fix is to keep Alfred Blue on your bench no matter what. If you do own Foster or Murray or maybe even had Ronnie Hillman or Ahmad Bradshaw, there are a few options out there for you to consider:

Arian+Foster+Houston+Texans+v+New+England+F250cpNTtbDl

C.J. Anderson could not have timed it better in regard to fantasy playoffs.  With Ronnie Hillman down for at least another 2 weeks with a foot sprain (that should take a total of 3 weeks to heal) and Monte Ball out again with a strained groin , C.J. Anderson will basically have the backfield to himself.  I expect Hillman to come back by week 14 and I expect Ball to be a non factor for the remainder of the fantasy season as his re-injury tells me he really needs to give that groin another 3 weeks  or more to heal and then return slowly (I don’t expect him to play until the NFL playoffs).  Furthermore, Peyton plus the cold means more running plays and more short passes.  The only fear is that the volume that Anderson receives in the next few weeks will get him injured too.  The good news on that front is that this is almost like game 4 for Anderson, as he has not played much this season.  In my opinion he is the top running back to pick up down the stretch.  Do anything you can to get him for your leagues and one-day players should spend whatever he cost to get him in the line up.

Another back who’s fantasy value just got a big boost is Trent Richardson.  I say this reluctantly as prior to this injury, I literally considered him a bottom 10 back that I would never consider starting.  However, the bottom line is Ahmad Bradshaw and his fractured fibula means he is done, and for now Trent will get all the goal line carries as well as a likely 20+ total carries per game.  In a more traditional running back way, I think this will actually help Trent Richardson, who has the potential to be a wear on you/hard to stop at the end of the game back.  The final kicker is really to look at the Colts remaining schedule.   There are some blowouts coming and you know who will be killing that clock, even if it is 3 yards at a time.  Look for some fantasy numbers in the form of 25 carries for 72 yards with 2 touchdowns with 2-3 catches sprinkled in.  I think many of us can live with those 20 + fantasy points.

Giovani Bernard appears to be ready to return for week 12 and based on reports of a hip pointer and a clavicle issue, he appears to have taken the proper time off.  For some, this may seem to be a good thing, but I look at this as a lose-lose situation for fantasy owners.  Jeremy Hill showed the ability to be a fantasy stud while Bernard was out and Bernard was a stud before he got hurt.  When you put two fantasy studs in one backfield, unfortunately they turn into one half a stud each.  If you already have Bernard and are in a PPR format, he is definitely worth keeping, but I do not see the Bengals taking Hill back to his previous role of simply spelling Bernard.  I see a backfield that will almost be half and half which is a disaster for fantasy owners.  If you can trade either of these player based off of name value, now would be a good time.  Jeremy Hill owners may consider sitting tight for a couple of games, as Bernard is undersized and as the cold weather sets in, he may be in line for another injury.  If I could pick, I would much rather the style of Hill to carry me to the fantasy playoffs, but by no means would I wish injury on any player.

Wide Receiver

It appears that the wave of wide receiver injuries is over with Megatron, A.J. Green, Andre Johnson, and Odell Beckham Jr. all back and healthy.  Despite this abundance of health at the position, there are some injuries that will make some receivers more attractive than others.

ty hilton

T.Y. Hilton is already a must own everywhere but for you one-day fantasy players who are comparing T.Y. to Dez or Megatron or Jordy Nelson on a weekly basis, here is the reason why T.Y. might have eclipsed many of them.  With the injury to Ahmad Bradshaw, the Colts have lost their only receiving back.  Additionally, the Colts have an injury to their best tight end Dwayne Allen.  Allen is listed as day-to-day with an ankle injury but I expect him to miss at least one game or at the very least see less time on the field.  This means more Coby Fleener during the competitive portion (there will be garbage time for Trent Richardson to get his!) of the Colts games; it means less running as Allen is the obvious running game tight end while Fleener is the passing game tight end.  T.Y. is by far the most targeted player for Andrew Luck and these injury developments likely just increased his targets.  As we hit the stretch for the fantasy season, I think T.Y. Hilton will be as good as it gets at the receiver position.

Demaryius Thomas may also get a little bump up from his already superstar status after The Dnever Broncos lost Emmanuel Sanders and Julius Thomas in week 11 to injuries.  Sanders went down with a concussion and looks to be probable for week 12, however there is evidence out there that correlates concussions to poor performance shortly after recovery from said concussion.  As for Julius Thomas, he appears to have a simple low ankle sprain but he likely will miss a couple of weeks.  This sets up for Demaryius to have an even bigger role in the Broncos pass game.  We may even get a Wes Welker flash back for my fantasy league players who are desperate for a short-term play at receiver.

Brandin Cooks thumb fracture has effectively ended both his fantasy and real football seasons.  This means someone who is healthy on the Saints likely gets more targets as Cooks was the second most targeted player on the team to Jimmy Graham, and the most targeted receiver on the team.  This is a tough call between Marques Colston and Kenny Stills, but I would take a chance on Colston as Drew Brees targets him more than Stills, and Brees and Colston have more history.  This must be a cautious play as Cooks injury may actually just lead to Colston, Stills and who ever replaces Cooks to split the targets by 3, which would make no one happy.  This may be one to take a look at for a week or two before making a move.

Now this one has nothing to do with an injury per say, but those who read my work often know that I split my skilled players into Freaky Talented and Supremely Skilled.  Around this time of season the Freaky Talented group will start to slow down as the weather elements may not be ideal for their talents to fully shine.  Additionally, it is my theory that these Freaky Talented athletes need pit stops to rejuvenate as they max their bodies out while utilizing all of their god given talent.  But if I can get one of the most Freaky Talented players in the league with completely fresh legs at this point in the season, I am all over that!.  Josh Gordon is exactly that.  Not only does the physical play in his favor, but the mental sounds like it is ready too. One of the first quotes given to nfl.com from Gordon was “I’m going to tear this league up”.  If your league is anything like the one I am in, Gordon has been owned all year despite not playing…he is that coveted.  If there is any way to get him, I would go for it.  For one-day fantasy players, this may be the only week you will get him cheap.  After he faces the worst pass defense in the league down in Atlanta, my guess is that his price will be right up there with the elite wide receivers where it belongs.

Marqis Lee is a low-level benefactor of the foot fracture that Allen Robinson suffered.  This consideration is more for the one-day fantasy players who have the bare minimum to spend on a flex player that has the chance to actually do something.  The two things I think I know is that Lee will now be on the field in all 3 wide receiver sets (with Robinson out) and that Lee has lots of talented.  Everything beyond that is a gamble….your choice.

Tight End

As I mentioned earlier, the Dwayne Allen injury may officially push Coby Fleener to the TE1 conversation.  Fleener has been inconsistent despite being Andrew Luck’s teammate in college, but now he appears to be ramping up.  1-2 weeks of Allen being out may generate a role for Fleener that will become a little more permanent int the Colts offense.  Additionally, if Trent Richardson does not take advantage of his opportunity like I think he will, you may see the Colts just turn into a pure passing team in which Fleener stays on the field a bunch more as run blocking would not be needed.  I would keep my eye on Fleener in fantasy leagues and pick him up if a roster spot is available.  He is also a good one-day play if you don’t want to spend on one the big three of Gronk, Graham, or Thomas.

Some of you may be waiting for Jordan Cameron to be cleared from the concussion protocol and are ready to plug him in as your starter.  I would look in another direction.  Again, performance after concussions can be tricky and with the reports indicating Cameron having some long-term concerns, I would simply stay away from Cameron this year.  Any return will be on egg shells and the likelihood of poor performance or another concussion is a very real possibility.

Tight End is a tough position to pick up late in the season and in most cases the match up should dictate who you play, but there are a few that you may be able to pick up and fill in with.  Zach Ertz had a big buzz at the beginning of the season but that buzz has faded fast.  I am not saying Ertz will win any week for you but I think the addition of Mark Sanchez to the equation allows him to not lose a week for you.  Sanchez and Ertz have a relationship that ranges from preseason as they both had significant 2nd team reps.  Sanchez is definitely looking for him more than Foles did.  Now all Ertz has to do is find a way to stay on the field for more snaps and you may have a decent TE2.

Defense/Special Teams

The Pittsburgh Steelers are about to get real healthy and are likely sitting there waiting to be picked up in most leagues.  With the return of 5 starters including their leader-Troy Polamalu as well as the addition and rejuvenation of the great James Harrison, the Steelers may look like the traditional Pittsburgh Steelers down the stretch.  The tricky thing with these injuries is that when the players make it through and the team stays competitive, the return from injury is that much greater.  The Steelers should have a lot of fresh legs on the field vs. many who are simply worn down from the grind of a 16 game season.

sproles punt
Sproles may be the biggest little reason to start the Eagles DST!

The Philadelphia Eagles should be on everyone’s radar as they are having a near historic year on Special Teams with punt blocks, field goal blocks, and even extra point blocks.  Combine this with arguably a top 3 punt-return man in Darren Sproles and Chris Polk who already has a kick return for a TD and you would think picking them up is a no brainer.  But then the leader of the defense Demeco Ryans goes down and Aaron Rodgers puts up a million points.  I can see how people may get nervous about this being their starting defense.  As bad as the Demeco Ryans injury is for the actual defense, I think the response to the injury by the Eagles is even more telling.  Instead of looking for another linebacker to replace Ryans or even just looking for another defensive player, the Eagles signed Chris Prosinski.  Posinski is a safety from Jacksonville who is primarily a Special Teams stud.  They added him to a Special Teams that already boast Chris Maragos who is arguably the Michael Jordan of Special Teams.  So while losing your middle linebacker is bad, the Eagles may have gotten even better with rushing the quarterback by bringing more speed and agility to the linebacker position with Mychal Kendricks as the new focal point.  The bigger point is that I don’t think any other team in the league takes Special Teams as serious as the Eagles and frankly that is where all the points are coming from rather than the actual defense.  They should be the premiere DST going down the stretch in all formats despite losing the leader of their defense for the remainder of the season.

Good Luck