Put your hand up if you had Gary Barnidge scoring more fantasy points last week than Rob Gronkowski? Anyone? How about Josh McCown throwing for 457 yards and two touchdowns? Or how about Adrian Peterson scoring zero fantasy points? Ah ha! Got you there! Peterson was on his bye last week.
What I’m getting at is making fantasy football predictions is never easy, but it sure is a lot of fun to try.
This week the crystal ball has gotten a tune-up. I took out the Windex and actually cleaned it. Now I should be able to see better into the future.
So let’s do it. Here are some bold, but maybe not-so-crazy fantasy predictions for Week 6.
Andrew Luck Returns and Throws For Over 350 Yards and 3 TDs
Anyone who has Luck on their roster really hopes this prediction is true. So far this season Luck has been terrible. Guys like McCown and Brian Hoyer have played better than he has and then things got even worse when he suffered a mysterious shoulder injury in a game against the Tennessee Titans in Week 3, and he hasn’t played since. The word this week out of Colts practice is that Luck is making all the throws and is pain free. That’s good news for Luck owners (and T.Y. Hilton and Donte Moncrief owners too) because they are going to need Luck to be at 100 percent health and the Luck of old if the Colts are going to have any chance of beating the New England Patriots Sunday night. More on this in a bit, but you just know that the Patriots are going to run up the score on the Colts thanks to the whole “Deflategate” thing and that will provide Luck with plenty of opportunities to air it out against a New England secondary that has given up the 12th-most fantasy points to QBs this season. But no matter what Luck does it won’t matter because...
Tom Brady Will Throw For Over 500 Yards and 5 TDs
This week’s game against the Colts has been circled on Bill Belichick’s and Tom Brady’s calendars since the end of last season all because of “Deflategate.” Now finally after a few warm-up games to start the season where Brady has already thrown 11 TDs and zero interceptions, they get their main event. Don’t be surprised if the score is 30–0 by halftime. And don’t be even more surprised if in the second half Brady keeps “airing it out” (pun intended) and tries to set some single-game records. If you’re a Colts fan, it’s probably best to watch "The Simpsons" instead Sunday night.
Eddie Lacy Finally Gets Going With 150 Rushing Yards and 2 TDs
To put it bluntly, Lacy has sucked so far this season. He hasn’t scored 10 fantasy points in a single game since Week 1 and is coming off a game where he had 13 carries for 27 yards. That’s absolutely pathetic for someone who was a sure-fire top-6 pick in most fantasy drafts. Is there something wrong with Lacy or has the entire Packers offense changed because they really do miss Jordy Nelson? Well we might know the answer to that question after this week as Lacy and the Packers play host to the San Diego Chargers, who are coming off a heartbreaking Monday night loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers and are playing in Lambeau on a short week. Plus the Chargers don’t travel well, they’ve been smoked in their two previous road games. Plus the Chargers can’t stop the run, they’re giving up an average of 130.2 rushing yards per game. Plus the Chargers are third worst in terms of fantasy points allowed to opposing RBs. If Lacy is going to break out of his early-season funk, this is the game.
Marshawn Lynch Finally Returns To Action and Looks Like His Old Self
You have to think that the competitor deep down inside Lynch is going to come out this week and he is going to go full “beast mode” against the Carolina Panthers. Lynch has been terrible all year and has sat out the last two games after barely playing in Week 3. In his absence he’s watched an undrafted free agent named Thomas Rawls run for 321 yards in those three games and look a lot like a younger and faster Lynch. With the Seahawks' inability to pass protect, they are really going to need to lean on Lynch to carry the offense. That will suit Lynch just fine, even though he might get only about 60 percent of the carries, as Rawls has earned some playing time this week. The Seahawks host the Panthers, a defense that has given up the eighth-most fantasy points to RBs so far this year. Look for Lynch to get over 100 yards and score one touchdown.
Matthew Stafford Proves He Doesn’t Suck and Finally Ends His Slump
If you drafted Stafford to be your starting quarterback this year because you thought that he was going to have a breakout season, I feel for you. Lots of people thought this was the year that Stafford could put all his talent together and actually be a legit QB1 in fantasy football. Well, so far that’s not been the case. Believe it or not, Stafford has only one more fantasy point than Ben Roethlisberger this season. That’s crazy when you consider that Stafford has started five games this season and Big Ben has only played two and a half. Playing the Chicago Bears at home this week is just what the doctor ordered for Stafford to break out of his slump. The Bears rank fourth in the league in passing yards allowed and have given up 11 touchdown passes with just two interceptions. If you also take into consideration that the Lions are really struggling to run the ball, this offense needs Stafford to throw the ball to Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate a lot if they are finally going to get into the win column. Look for Stafford to go over 300 yards passing with two touchdowns.
DeAndre Hopkins Catches 20 Balls For Over 175 Yards
Who’s the best wide receiver in the NFL today? Julio Jones? Maybe, but he hasn’t been very productive the last two weeks. Calvin Johnson? Not even close. Demaryius Thomas? Not with Peyton Manning throwing him lame ducks. The best receiver in football today is Hopkins and he just keeps getting better, week in and week out. Through five games this season he has an incredible 74 targets. That’s 12 more than Julio Jones. Since the Texans can’t defend a JV team, they are forced to throw the ball all game and they really only throw the ball to one guy - Hopkins. Now notice I didn’t call Hopkins the best fantasy wide receiver, that’s because he hasn’t scored many touchdowns. But if you have Hopkins in a PPR league, you’ve struck pure gold. This week he matches up against the Jacksonville Jaguars who know they won’t be able to slow Hopkins down. Look for another big game from the Texans' top target.
Greg Olsen Torches The Seahawks For 10 Catches, 100 Yards and 2 Touchdowns
Like all tight ends (yes even Gronk), Olsen has had his ups and downs this season. He’s scored 25.4 fantasy points in one game, and a pathetic 1.1 in another. Thankfully for all Olsen owners, he has a great matchup this week as the Carolina Panthers travel all the way to the west coast to visit the Seattle Seahawks. Normally starting any fantasy player against the Seahawks in Seattle is a bad idea, but this year the Seahawks have not been able to defend against tight ends. They are fifth in fantasy points allowed to TEs as last week Tyler Eifert caught eight passes for 90 yards and two touchdowns. It also helps that Olsen is the only receiving threat that the Panthers have and Cam Newton will look to get the ball in his tight end's hands as often as possible. The Panthers won’t win this game, but they will keep it close thanks to Olsen.
— Written by Michael Horvath, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Horvath is a Canadian who also happens to be a fantasy football (not to be confused with CFL) and fitness nut. Follow him on Twitter @realmikehorvath.