Aside from the plethora of upsets on Sunday, you really only need to check out one stat to understand what a wacky day it was. After setting an NFL record for passing yards, Peyton Manning went colorblind and started throwing every pass to Chiefs’ defenders. He was pulled and ended the day with a career record and a passer rating for the game of 0.00. QB Kirk Cousins destroyed the Saints defense and had a perfect passer rating. In no universe could I ever envision that QB spectrum. At least the Saints finally had enough of DC Rob Ryan’s defensive “ingenuity”. His unit has been baaad for a long time so the release was far from a shock to anyone.
Sunday was jaw-droppingly crazy. Baltimore was probably ripped off in their game but they did put themselves in that position. The Giants game was another late shocker for the way it ended up unfolding. So many chances to ice the game and so many missed opportunities. In Green Bay, which really was the true shocker of the day, the Lions tried to outdo every game they have ever blown. They were saved by a Lions-like knuckler from Mason Crosby. Way to suck all drama out of that comeback, Mason. Yuck. The only thing worse than that kick is the Packers running game. Rodgers threw the ball 61 times. Unless this was a 6 quarter game or a blowout, that is FAR too many times to let the defense take shots at the only weapon the Packers seem to have this year. Losses to Denver and Carolina were reasonable, but losing at home to Detroit will make the whole franchise look in the mirror.
Other thoughts from Sunday:
- There could actually be two divisions won by teams under .500 this season. The AFC South is virtually a lock to have a champ under .500 and it may only take 6 wins to clinch the division.
- Yes, Father Time has caught up with Peyton Manning but how much is the loss of OC Adam Gase hurting him as well. Gase appears to have worked wonders with Jay Cutler in Chicago. Cutler has greatly reduced the number of bonehead turnovers that he normally commits and is directing the Bears back towards possible wildcard territory. I am sure HC John Fox, Gase and Cutler are all looking forward to kicking the Broncos while they are down this weekend.
- Is it any wonder that the Steelers have won so many titles over the years? That is one smart franchise. Sunday was a big win for them and probably wouldn’t have happened if they made Ben Roethlisberger Inactive as most people expected them to do. He was pressed into service right away when Landry Jones was hurt and he absolutely tore up the Browns. Michael Vick probably gets outplayed by Johnny Manziel. Anyone having In-game Player Changes turned on in their league should have been able to at least catch a 2nd half of his greatness unless they played a QB from Thursday night.
- The Dolphins have given up a safety in 3 straight games and are making it an entertaining streak. The latest entry started with a Damien Williams’ kickoff return. He muffed the kickoff deep in the end zone and ignored pleas to down the ball since it is legal to do so. Common Sense poked its head in around the 1-yard line and tripped him up when he tried to stop himself. He then hurt his ankle and was ruled down at the 1-yard line. That made the safety much easier for Philly. I’ll be watching this Sunday to see what inventive method they will use to extend their streak against the Cowboys.
- I believe that the only Survivor Pool winners from Week 10 were those who finally decided to use Carolina. My pool featured the remaining 4 players picking 4 different teams and all lost. So, they get a full redo. Sheer wackiness.
- Make sure to take advantage of MFS Daily and Weekly Draft and Non-Draft leagues at http://www.maximumfantasysports.com/OpenLeagues.aspx.
More injuries and more Bye weeks are taking their toll on lineups this week so it is back to the waiver wire again.
QB Jay Cutler (CHI) – surprisingly, Cutler is still available in 20% of our leagues and has been pretty consistent this season. He has had double digit points in every game that he has finished (he left the Arizona game early). If I need a QB plug-in this week, I am a bit worried about facing Denver’s defense, but I like Cutler more than Mark Sanchez, Kirk Cousins (expect a thud when he returns to Earth this week) and Brock Osweiler.
RB Matt Jones (WASH) – Jones has shown great potential through a few nice games this year but he is far from consistent. He is healthy right now and gets enough carries and receptions that he is worth a start if you need a fill-in.
RB Denard Robinson (JAX) - T.J. Yeldon suffered a foot injury against the Baltimore Ravens and it is not known if he can play on Thursday. If he can’t, there is no guarantee that Robinson will be the next man up. The Jags went with a RBBC earlier this year with Yeldon out but Robinson stepped in at this time last season and put up great numbers so, if you have to roll the dice, you could do worse.
WR Danny Amendola (NE) – the Patriots lost WR Julian Edelman for the remainder of the regular season and Amendola should see some of his workload. He doesn’t find the end zone as many times as Edelman, but the uptick in Catches is very nice in PPR leagues.
WR Kamar Aiken (BAL) – he didn’t do a lot on Sunday as the Ravens struggled all day, but he did get 15 Looks. Aside from tight ends (Crockett Gillmore and Maxx Williams), Aiken is the de facto possession receiver that is filling the Steve Smith Sr. role. At least he is in play. In non-PPR leagues, don't be afraid to give his running mate, WR Chris Givens, a look as well as he fits with QB Joe Flacco's desire to throw long.
TE Zach Miller (CHI) – you could grab either tight end from Baltimore or roll the dice on Miller. He topped a fabulous one-handed game-winning TD in San Diego by scoring twice in St. Louis, including a 87-yard TD. Needless to say, he seems to have won Cutler’s trust.