Before we get to the waiver wire writeups for this week however, let's take a brief moment to cover off on some important IDP notes from week 15:
Patrick Willis missed his 2nd straight game last week and it looks as though he may miss his third straight game this week as he is still recovering from a hamstring injury. Larry Grant remains a solid play while Willis is out.
Patrick Chung missed yet another game last week. He did practice in a limited fashion on Wednesday but will most likely be a game-time decision on Sunday. I wouldn't trust him in my lineups during this crucial championship week.
Rookie sensation Von Miller had his worst game of the season with 1 solo tackle against the Patriots last week. He seemed to be bothered by his thumb injury. His matchup this week against the Bills is a really tough one as Buffalo is one of the harder teams in the NFL to sack. If there ever was a week to bench Miller, this is the week to do so.
Breakout 2nd year player Sean Lee has struggled a bit after tearing ligaments in his wrist several weeks ago. Although his solo tackle numbers have decreased a bit, he's still averaging 7-10 total tackles per game. His poor performance last week was due to very limited opportunity as the Cowboys offense controlled the ball for a majority of the game. Expect that to change this week against the Eagles who have been playing much better as of late. They are a great matchup for linebackers and Lee should be a top 10 play this week.
Antwan Barnes had 4 sacks against his old team the Baltimore Ravens. I see this performance as more of a fluke than a regular future occurence.
Jason Pierre-Paul continued his unbelievable fantasy season by registering a whopping 16 total tackles and a sack against the Redskins last week. With this said, JPP is making a strong case to be the #1 overall IDP taken in next year's fantasy drafts.
With last week's notes out of the way, let's move on to the Guru's waiver wire selections for this week.
LDE Mark Anderson (NE) - The season-ending injury to Andre Carter opens the door for Anderson to see an increase in playing time. Anderson was performing solidly before Carter's injury with 8.5 sacks and his production should only increase now that he is the full-time starter. He draws the Dolphins this week which is a very good matchup. He figures to be a great DL3 with upside play this week.
LDE Dave Ball (TEN) - Ball is a player with limited upside but who is capable of performing well in the right matchup. He's a solid run defender who is usually good for 3-5 solo tackles per game. He faces the Blaine Gabbert-led Jaguars this week who gave up 3.5 sacks to John Abraham last week. Ball had a decent chance for a sack in this contest and will likely throw in 3-4 solo tackles.
LDT Isreal Idonije (CHI) - Idonije has been pretty solid in the tackle department over his last 5 games as he's registered 18 solo tackles. He faces the Packers this week who actually have one of the poorer pass protecting lines in the NFL. He's a good low-end DT1 play this week for those in DT-required leagues.
RDE Michael Johnson (CIN) - Johnson has been playing much better over his last three games in both the run and pass rushing departments. He has a very nice matchup against the Cardinals this week and is a good high risk/reward play for owners looking for big points this week.
WLB Jordan Senn (CAR) - Senn exploded for 14 total tackles, 1 FF, and an interception last week against the Texans. Owners must keep in mind that Senn's matchup against Houston was very good which resulted in above average production. Senn's tackle output before that was fairly average. His matchup this week against the Buccaneers is a slightly above average matchup as long as they can get their running game going. Admittingly, he's a risky play this week but for those in deeper leagues looking to fill their LB4 spot, Senn is worth a look as he does have nice upside.
MLB Colin McCarthy (TEN) - McCarthy is the #1 ranked linebacker in my Weekly IDP Rankings this week. Although he's had two subpar tackling games recently, it wasn't due to lack of talent or performance on his part. Rather, it was a lack of opportunity as he was facing poor matchups. This week is a different story as the Jaguars typically are a very good matchup for run-stuffing linebackers like McCarthy. I expect double digit tackles this week from the up and coming IDP stud.
ROLB James Harrison (PIT) - Harrison is one of the best big play fantasy linebackers in the league. Although he missed several games due to an injury, he's had 2 three sack games this season and has a great chance this week for another huge game as he faces the pathetic offensive line of the St. Louis Rams who have allowed the most sacks in the NFL. Also, Harrison is coming off a one game suspension which he personally felt was unwarranted. Expect him to come out with a vengeance and have a very good game.
WLB Michael Boley (NYG) - Boley has been far and away the Giants most consistent tackling linebacker. When healthy, he's usually good for 6-8 total tackles. He has a great matchup this week against the Jets who have given up the 2nd most points to opposing linebackers so far this season. Consider Boley a high upside LB3+ and even a low-end LB2 for owners that are desperate in deeper leagues.
MLB E.J. Henderson (MIN) - Henderson has been pretty solid over his last 5 games with 41 total tackles. He has a top 5 matchup against the Redskins this week and should be on the field for a majority of his team's snaps as the Redskins don't use a lot of spread sets and consequently the Vikings won't be incorporating their nickel packages as much as they usually do. Consider Henderson a solid LB2 start this week.
SS William Moore (ATL) - A few weeks ago it looked as though Moore's fantasy value was all but lost as he was benched in favor of veteran James Sanders. However, in somewhat of a surprise move, the Atlanta coaching staff went back to Moore in week 15 and it looks like he will finish out the season as the starter. He had 7 solos last week against Jacksonville and could provide owners with a boost at their DB position for the rest of the remaining season.
LCB Ashton Youboty (JAX) - First off, you have to love the last name. Secondly, "Yo Booty" has been getting picked on by opposing offenses early and often and should be busy trying to cover the Titans wide receivers this week. He should be good for 5-6 solos.
SS Amari Spievey (DET) - The Chargers have been a great matchup for free safeties this season, especially lately as the Chargers offense has been ramping up here in December. Spievey has had a handful of nice tackling games this season and this week could very well turn out to be one his best. I'd trust him as my DB3.
FS Kerry Rhodes (ARI) - Rhodes was one of the top fantasy DBs in 2010. However, he had his season cut short in 2011 after going down with an injury in week 5. After an extended absence, he finally returned to the starting lineup last week and put up a 3-2 statline in limited playing time (only 29 snaps). He has a very appealing matchup against the Bengals this week and should see an increase in playing time over last week. He remains a risky play though as it's hard to predict how many snaps Rhodes will actually get. If you're a major underdog this week, Rhodes may be worth the risk as your DB3 in deeper leagues.
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Last Updated: December 23, 2011 Related Posts: