THUNDERING BLURB » week 15 ANDREW GARDA'S ENDLESS TAKES ON NFL AND COLLEGE FOOTBALL Tue, 26 Oct 2010 03:04:29 +0000 en hourly 1 Top WR Performances for Week 15 Wed, 17 Dec 2008 02:59:00 +0000 admin

Andre Johnson 11/207/1 – Johnson continues to combine yards and TDs. The last three games have been a successful combo of both and while it’s not an easy matchup against Oakland’s secondary, clearly they can be beat. Johnson is a must start even if 200+ yards is a rare thing, he’s on a roll and you should ride him to a win.

Steve Smith 9/174/1 – Smith is another one who is playing very well right now. He’s amassed 100+ yards in four straight games and a TD in each of the last two. He faces a tough matchup in the Giants defense, but like Andre Johnson, you have to be playing him each week. He’s too hot not too and has peaked at just the right time.

Calvin Johnson 9/110/1 – 1 fumble – Aside from a bad fumble, Megatron finally got both the targets AND the yards. He’s had two games in a row with a TD as well. New Orleans’ secondary can be beat and let’s face it – in this gunfight, the Saints should come out blazing. It’s hard to believe they’ll get him that many catches again, but Johnson has been stellar all season long, with only a few true clunkers to his name. He’s a guy who is too good to be contained by the defense in most games. And he’s too good to to keep out of your fantasy lineup no matter what he faces.

Antonio Bryant 8/108/1- Here he is again. Antonio FREAKING Bryant. I can say that with venom as he escorted me out of one set of playoffs last week. That aside he is hot right now and you should have him playing each week. Is he a bona fide WR1? Probably not – but two straight 100+ yard games and three straight with at least 1 TD? He’s hot enough for at a #2 spot. And with confidence no less. Whoda thunk it after the relatively unspectacular season?

Dennis Northcutt 5/136/1 - Is Northcutt the new ‘go-to guy’ in Jacksonville with Matt Jones finally on time out? Well with Mike Walker pretty much a no show, Jerry Porter on IR and Reggie Williams the other option, he probably is. I can’t feel good about recommending him as anything but a WR3 or 4 but he may be the type of late year player worth having in the lineup. But careful – Indy is ranked seventh against the pass with only 5 TDs allowed.

Randy Moss 5/136/1 - A pretty darn good game that normally would have had him near the top of this list – he’s essentially tied for 5 on it anyway and I’d recommend him over Northcutt in a heartbeat – but you were already playing him each week right?

Best of the rest –

Hines Ward 8/107 – Ward has been spotty all season long and now is facing a pretty good Titans defense. He should get a lot of short work but don’t expect a big game.

Vincent Jackson 6/97/1 – 1 fumble – Another solid game from a guy normally relegated to WR3 or 4 status who probably should be a #2 on many teams by now. Had a rough patch a few weeks back, but seems to have passed it.

Marques Colston 6/84/1 – Still not consistent but should be in the lineup most weeks. While Pierre Thomas may go buck wild on the toothless Lions, Brees is Brees and will throw the ball. I would start Colston as aWR3 or 2 with confidence. However I reserve the right to change my mind as we close on the weekend.

Reggie Wayne 7/104 - Should have another good game against JAX on Thursday. Yes he’s been ‘meh’ this season. But he’ll end strong for you in the Championships.

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Top Fantasy QBs of Week 15 Tue, 16 Dec 2008 22:00:00 +0000 admin Matt Cassel 218/4/1 (18 yards rushing) – Cassel continues to play very well in Brady’s stead and could turn it into cash on the field next season for another team. For your fantasy team he’s still a matchups only guy – and note the lack of yards. If you only get 4 pts for TDs, that 4 TD day looks less impressive.

Philip Rivers 346/2/1 – 1 fumble – Rivers – who was robbed today of a Pro Bowl appearence by one of my Jets, The Brett – continues to play hard behidn a slipshod Oline with little or no support from the run game. Rivers has had a few bad games and faces a good Tampa Bay defense, so this weekend may be another down week for him.

Tarvaris Jackson 163/4 – Low yardage totals aren’t new but 4 TDs are. Jackson hasn’t been spectacular and he’s not scaring secondaries to make Peterson’s job easier but he has played decently the last few games. I wouldn’t have him near my lineup the rest of the way though.

Peyton Manning 318/1 – Manning had a decent game, though short a TD or two. He continues to be a must start again, now that his team has gotten back on track. He should be a very good start against Jacksonville this Thursday.

David Garrard 238/2 (31 yds running) - Garrard has been wildly inconsistent this season (like the Jags whole team) and is running out of wide receievers. I can’t say he’s an auto-sit, but more often than not, he will be a very risky start.

Best of the rest –
Donovan McNabb 290/2/1 – McNabb is back to form – all it took was a benching. The matchup vs Washington looks shaky but he’s on the rise while they are slipping.
Ryan Fitzpatrick 209/1 (29 rush yards, 1 rush TD) – Unexpected appearence by the Harvard QB – I don’t expect to see it again. Still too many question marks on the team.
Tony Romo 244/2 – I don’t know if I buy the love triangle between he, Witten and TO, but it’s not like the drama actually affected him as far as I could see.
Tyler Thigpen 171/1/1 (40 rush yards 1 rush TD)
JaMarcus Russell 242/2/1 – Russell had one of those games you look at and say ‘yeah maybe he CAN do it’ but it’s still not a situation I would trust this week. Maybe Russell will become the Qb the Raiders need him to be – but this team is not in the shape he needs them to be either.

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Top RB Performances for Week 15 Tue, 16 Dec 2008 20:59:00 +0000 admin

Pierre Thomas 146/1 & 1 rec TD – Thomas has had two very nice games in a row and has peaked just in time to carry you to the Fantasy Championship – where he will face Detroit in one of the better matchups in Week 16. Thomas is certainly earning that permanent gig in the backfield and could seal it up this weekend.

Dominic Rhodes 116/2 – Rhodes looked like he was going to be a good play this weekend even before Addai was deactivated. With the full load, Rhodes showed he made the right decision in heading back home to Indy after the poor choice to go to Oakland. Addai is still shaky and may miss the game this week against Jacksonville. Rhodes will be a decent flex at least even if Addai plays and would bump up if Addai is out again.

Michael Turner 182/1- Turner has long put to rest the concern that he was inconsitent and struggled against better run defenses. You had to start him even against Minnesota’s stout defense – and with Pat Williams out the matchup actually looks much better than it did a few days ago.

Tashard Choice 143/1- I don’t even know what to make of Tashard Choice. What do you do with him against Baltimore? He’s already performed against two of the top run defenses in the league in Pittsburgh and the Giants – performed being Blurb code for BLEW UP. Do you trust him going into the your championship game? It’s hard for me to say he is a must start, but he has played very well TWICE against two top 5 run defenses. Can you afford to sit him?

Steven Jackson 127/1 - SJax is back! Kinda. This week. He should have a second good game against the 49rs this comign weekend. He is getting the rock and as long as he stays healthy he should be ok for this weekend, even though Singletary has the San Fran defense working pretty well.

Best of the rest -

Maurice Jones-Drew 70/1 & 1 rec- MJD should play all right against Indy, but has been shaky in terms of yard production.

Kevin Faulk 111 & 1 rec – Faulk shows his owners why he is often a solid flex option.

Darren McFadden 114/1- Darren ‘Boom or Bust’ McFadden booms last week – may have a decent day against Houston but you never know with the Raiders and the running backs.

Sammy Morris 117/1 - How Faulk and Morris got in on the same list is pretty intriguing and in New England that’s pretty rare.

Kevin Smith 119/1 - A pretty good day against the Colts – he might look ok again versus New Orleans if Detroit doesn’t abandon the run.

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WR Rankings for Week 15 Fri, 12 Dec 2008 22:03:00 +0000 admin Larry Fitzgerald has really come on for the last few weeks – Anquan Boldin will not continue to struggle but Fitzgerald has been THE MAN for the Cardinals the last few weeks and rock solid for the whole season. He should see a lot of work since the best way to beat the Vikings is through the air. And of the dynamic duo, Fitz is the hotter and I think he will get a ton of work from Warner.

It took a while to happen but Steve Smith finally started producing really nicely. The Broncos can get thrown against with or without Champ Bailey and Smith has made some great catches. Even though Delhomme is not a great start and has struggled, Smith has still been able to put up good points and will do so this week as well.

On the opposite sideline, Brandon Marshall will succeed, probably just because of the sheer volume of passes Cutler will heave at him. I don’t expect Bell to do much save for keeping the defense honest and I think the Broncos will not rely on any of the collage of also rans and never was RBs they’ve collected. Marshall has the ability to overcome the defense and with Eddie Royal and tight end Tony Scheffler, he’ll find some single coverage.

Greg Jennings, like Aaron Rodgers, puts up fantasy points even when the Packers lose. As Rodgers does well, Jennings does as well because Rodgers loves him some Jennings. He’ll look at him pretty frequently and lucky for him, Jennings can catch anything thrown at him. Jennings is a reliable fantasy starter every week and again when the big fantasy names at WR get talked about, his name is not brought up often enough.

Roddy White faces a dangerous secondary in Tampa Bay who will harrass and attack both White and Matt Ryan. However, White has more than earned his auto-start in your lineup and while it’s a bad matchup, he has seen those before and succeeded. Ryan struggled against this secondary in it’s own house before. But he is more experiance and home, so expect a better game from him and a great game from White.

Wide Receiver

  1. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals vs. Vikings
  2. Steve Smith, Panthers vs. Broncos
  3. Brandon Marshall, Broncos at Panthers
  4. Greg Jennings, Packers at Jaguars
  5. Roddy White, Falcons vs. Buccaneers
  6. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs vs. Chargers
  7. Reggie Wayne, Colts vs. Lions
  8. Anquan Boldin, Cardinals vs. Vikings
  9. Calvin Johnson, Lions at Colts
  10. Randy Moss, Patriots at Raiders
  11. Terrell Owens, Cowboys vs. Giants
  12. Andre Johnson, Texans vs. Titans
  13. DeSean Jackson, Eagles vs. Browns
  14. Wes Welker, Patriots at Raiders
  15. Derrick Mason, Ravens vs. Steelers
  16. Lee Evans, Bills at Jets
  17. Jerricho Cotchery, Jets vs. Bills
  18. Vincent Jackson, Chargers at Chiefs
  19. Isaac Bruce, 49ers at Dolphins
  20. Antonio Bryant, Buccaneers at Falcons
  21. Santana Moss, Redskins at Bengals
  22. Davone Bess, Dolphins vs. 49ers
  23. Deion Branch, Seahawks at Rams
  24. Eddie Royal, Broncos at Panthers
  25. Kevin Walter, Texans vs. Titans
  26. Donald Driver, Packers at Jaguars
  27. T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Bengals vs. Redskins
  28. Hines Ward, Steelers at Ravens
  29. Bernard Berrian, Vikings at Cardinals
  30. Marvin Harrison, Colts vs. Lions
  31. Braylon Edwards, Browns at Eagles
  32. Santonio Holmes, Steelers at Ravens
  33. Hank Baskett, Eagles vs. Browns
  34. Steve Breaston, Cardinals vs. Vikings
  35. Reggie Williams, Jaguars vs. Packers
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QB Rankings for Week 15 Fri, 12 Dec 2008 20:08:00 +0000 admin Aaron Rodgers may be ‘no Brett Favre’ but that doesn’t mean he’s played badly for a first year starter. Last week he had 295 and a pair of TDs against the Texans in a loss, has been one of the hotter Fantasy QBs over the last three weeks and faces a middling defense which has given up 21 TDs this season. Even if he didn’t put up big yards, he’s likely to hit his WRs or Donald Lee for at least a few touchdowns.

Maybe Peyton Manning will suffer from a big case of Dominic Rhodes as the Lions attract good performances from opposing running backs but this is a team that throws the ball and I think Manning will do so regardless of how easy Rhodes finds it. The fact that it could be Rhodes and a host of nobodies could lead the team to throw in order to avoid running Rhodes into the ground.

If you are going to beat the Vikings you’re going to have to throw. And if you’re the Arizona Cardinals, possessing three outstanding wide receivers with Kurt Warner slinging the rock you were going to do that anyway. You may say ‘Andrew, the Vikes held off the Lions’ pass game last week….’ Actually in all likelyhood you wouldn’t get past the word ‘Lions’ – but even if you were to lose your mind and compare Warner with Culpepper, there are too many weapons to stop for the Vikes defense – an average defense overall. The biggest question is again, can the Cards’ oline hold against yet another sack-machine defense.

The Chargers have had some real problems in the offensive line and occasionally Philip Rivers has lacked the time and weapons to suceed but Vincent Jackson has stepped up this season and I expect Tomlinson to have a good day and therefore keep the defense honest. Now, I don’t expect a ton of points from the Wr core save for Jackson but I think Rivers will have a very good day against a defense that cannot generate a pass rush or turn over the ball. Rivers should have a nice little fantasy explosion for you Sunday.

Donovan McNabb continues to play well since Turkey Day and face a slowly bleeding to death Cleveland Browns. Now the Browns’ defense has actually been playing like they still give a damn, but it’s still not enough. And while Westbrook will have a good day, he’ll get a ton of yards through the air anyway and that translates to some good yards for McNabb. They’ll get the ball to Curtis, Brown and Jackson as well.

Back with more rankings in an hour or so….


  1. Aaron Rodgers, Packers at Jaguars
  2. Peyton Manning, Colts vs. Lions
  3. Kurt Warner, Cardinals vs. Vikings
  4. Philip Rivers, Chargers at Chiefs
  5. Donovan McNabb, Eagles vs. Browns
  6. Matt Cassel, Patriots at Raiders
  7. Jay Cutler, Broncos at Panthers
  8. Tony Romo, Cowboys vs. Giants
  9. Seneca Wallace, Seahawks at Rams
  10. Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. Buccaneers
  11. Tyler Thigpen, Chiefs vs. Chargers
  12. Shaun Hill, 49ers at Dolphins
  13. Matt Schaub, Texans vs. Titans
  14. Brett Favre, Jets vs. Bills
  15. Jason Campbell, Redskins at Bengals
  16. Jeff Garcia, Buccaneers at Falcons
  17. Kerry Collins, Titans at Texans
  18. Chad Pennington, Dolphins vs. 49ers
  19. Jake Delhomme, Panthers vs. Broncos
  20. Eli Manning, Giants at Cowboys
  21. Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers at Ravens
  22. Tarvaris Jackson Vikings at Cardinals
  23. David Garrard, Jaguars vs. Packers
  24. J.P. Losman, Bills at Jets
  25. Marc Bulger, Rams vs. Seahawks
  26. Dan Orlovsky, Lions at Colts
  27. Joe Flacco, Ravens vs. Steelers
  28. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bengals vs. Redskins
  29. JaMarcus Russell, Raiders vs. Patriots
  30. Ken Dorsey, Browns at Eagles
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Thursday Game Breakdown – Saints at Bears – Bears Breakdown Thu, 11 Dec 2008 18:08:00 +0000 admin BEARS
Kyle Orton – Isn’t knocking it out of the park but has played all right since he came back from injury. This isn’t an awful matchup – the Saitns are 16th vs the pass, and have given up 20 TDs and only have 11 INTs. So he won’t turn the ball over (not really his problem most weeks) and will probably throw for @ 200 or so yards again. But he won’t blow your opponent away and unless this is your best matchup and QB, I would rather pass on him. But it depends on your alternatives and Orton won’t lose you the game which might be important.

Matt Forte – Why are you even wondering? START HIM. Lock him into your RB2 (maybe RB1 depending). The Saints give up 112 yds per game and have allowed 10 TDs on the ground. Oh and he catches – if Orton has a TD, it is likely Forte catches it. Should have an excellent day as he is involved even if they trail as he catches the ball well.

Chicago WRs – You can stick any one of them in, but Hester is getting the most targets of late. Has the best chance as a flex or WR3/4 but don’t hold your breath.

Greg Olson – Olson is very much up and down – there are more stable TEs – BUT do you own them. He can get some looks from Orton and is a risky play. Depends upon who else you have, but I’m not sold that he will add that much to your fantasy team.

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Thursday Game Breakdown – Saints at Bears – Saints Breakdown Thu, 11 Dec 2008 18:06:00 +0000 admin

New Orleans @ Chicago


Drew Brees – The Bears run D is tougher, the pass D is ranked 28th with 15 TDs given up and an average of 234 yds a game. Now, they have 19 INTs, so you can expect a decent chance Brees turns a ball over but you can also assume that this is where the Saints attack the Bears and Brees will have success.

Reggie Bush – Bush faces a tough defense but the fact that he catches so many balls makes hi ma safer start. It ain’t great but as a RB 2 he should pile up enough yards to give you a good amount of points.

Pierre Thomas – he will get the carries but will he have success. I think as a flex, he might and if Brees is slinging the ball around as much as we think he will, Thomas will have some room on the ground. A shaky start but I think a safe enough one for a flex spot.

Deuce McAllister – McAllister missed practice yesterday due to a death in the family but should be in Chicago with the team tonight. That said, I don’t expect him to be a big part of the plan unless Thomas implodes. So he’s not a safe start tonight at all.

Marques Colston – Colston is starting to re-emerge as a consistent target (12 and 8 targets the last two games) but isn’t holding onto the ball. He should have a good chance in Chicago BUT he has fallen from WR1 status. At this point he should be a WR 2/3 – with huge upside, but potential low game as well.

Lance Moore- He’s NOT getting the targets he was – though still getting about 6 the last three weeks. The last two weeks he has caught less and DONE less than the weeks prior. He could be in for a good day as Brees will throw but with Colston, Bush, Shockey and others there perhaps he is fading back into the background. Might be a WR3, but a 4 or flex is safer.

Jeremy Shockey – Shockey has put in some decent catches the last few weeks but isn’t making a ton of noise. You gotta start him, probably and he’s more consistent than some others. But don’t expect fireworks.

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College Football Top 25 review – Week 15 Tue, 09 Dec 2008 05:30:00 +0000 admin A little late – and the Bowl dance cards are all filled out but here it is nonetheless. We’ll have coverage of the majors as we hit the end of the year. But for now, we wrap up the final non-Bowl week of the 2008 NCAA College Football season.

#4 Florida 31, #1 Alabama 20
In a hard fought and see-sawing match, Gator quarterback Tim Tebow threw a trio of touchdown passes and secured a spot for Florida in the National Championship game. It was a slugfest the whole way and both teams earned every yard. But in the end, Tebow showed why he’s on the cusp of another Heisman Trophy with a gutsy, poised performance.

#2 Oklahoma 62, #20 Missouri 21
The Sooners romped all over the Tigers as they locked down their spot in the BCS Championship game and won the Big 12 in the process. Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford put in another example of why, like Tebow, he is in the thick of the Heisman race, throwing for 384 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Sooners rolled the opposition, totaling 627 yards.

#5 USC 28, UCLA 7
USC only dropped one game, and an early one at that. But a weak Pac-10 conference prevented them from making up any real ground and a final game against an entirely overmatched UCLA team didn’t help matters. USC had little troubl with their crosstown rivals – Mark Sanchez threw for 269 yards, two touchdowns and an INT, while Joe McKnight led the ground attack with 99 yards and a 12 yard touchdown run. They will meet Penn State in the Rose Bowl, the fourth time in a row they have headed to the game. They also won their seventh consecutive BCS bid, completed their seventh straight 11-win season and and won their seventh Pac-10 Championship in a row.

#12 Ball State 24, Buffalo 42
Ball State just couldn’t hang onto the ball last Friday, as they fell to unranked Buffalo and losing the MAC Championship. Five turnovers spelled doom for the Cardinals, all of which in some way shape or form came from quarterback Nate Davis. Buffalo scored after each of the fumbles and those turnovers overshadowed Davis’ otherwise solid stats (351 yards and a touchdown). The Bulls ended Ball State’s perfect season and became Bowl eligible for the first time since they joined the majors in 1999. The school had previously been invited to the Tangerine Bowl in 1958 but turned it down since their African-American players would not have been allowed to play. That team will travel to Toronto for the International Bowl with the current team.

#13 Cincinnati 29, Hawaii 24
The Bearcats had to surge late to overcome an upset in Hawaii, rallying with 19 points in the 4th quarter in a hard-fought battle in Aloha Stadium.

#25 Virginia Tech 30, #17 Boston College 12
Virginia Tech was able to turn turnovers into points and that was all the difference as they beat the Eagles, won the ACC Championship and locked themselves into an Orange Bowl appearence. BC has beaten the Hokies twice in the last two regular seasons but VT has now won it’s second ACC title in a row (a first in the ACC) and their third in the five years they have been in the conference.

#23 Pittsburgh 34, UCONN 10
The Pitt Panthers are headed to the Sun Bowl o nthe strength of their first 9 win season since 1982. Running back LeSean McCoy turned in another good performance with 95 yards and a touchdown.

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