Cam Newton has been a borderline top-15 fantasy QB this season, but is it time to bench him?
Week 10 of the fantasy football season has come and gone and the superstars seem to have returned for the most part. With only three weeks before fantasy playoffs owners do NOT want to be panicking right now. There are several players this week who were drafted very highly, and are disappointing fantasy owners in a big way somehow.
Some of these concerns are validated, and these sub-performing subs may have been hurting you all season. Others have seemingly dropped off a cliff over the past three weeks or so. Either way if you are in the playoff picture, or trying to secure that last spot you can’t afford to be having doubts about who to start or who to trust.
I wish I could guarantee production, or whether a player will begin to succeed or flop for the rest of the season. I can’t, but I can give my input on who you should be worried about this week and beyond!
Panic or Patience will be here every week, but for now you need to know if that big-name player who is stinking up your roster is worth holding on to, benching, trading away or even cutting.
Patience or Panic?
1. Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots
This is a developing story but there are reports that Gronkowski has a punctured lung! Unreal considering the injury likely happened early in the game and he returned to action shortly after. Crazy I know.
The Verdict: Patience
As of now his modest game of three catches and 56 yards along with the injury is no concern. It is really too bad he will likely miss the dreamy matchup against San Francisco but he could be back as soon as Week 12. If this is the case you obviously lose another critical week without Gronk but should have him back and chomping at the bit to destroy defenses again.
2. Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers
Newton has not been anywhere near the fantasy scoring machine he was last season. This past week a trademark rushing touchdown helped salvage his week. Although it wasn’t terrible and he had 54 rushing yards, his lack of touchdown passes has been draining his fantasy value.
The Verdict: Patience
There really isn’t much you can do about Newton unless you have a more productive quarterback riding your bench, or perhaps you have been starting him already. Newton has a very nice schedule up ahead, so there’s the potential for him to turn it on for a fantasy playoff push. He has surely been disappointing, but if you are in the playoff hunt he can certainly help you down the road.
3. Christine Michael, RB, Seattle Seahawks
Michael is coming off back-to-back duds and Thomas Rawls is slated to return to practice this week. The Seattle running back had his time to shine. The days of 15-plus carries may be in the rearview mirror.
The Verdict: Panic
Michael has five carries in the last two games and aside from Rawls, rookie C.J. Prosise has been slowing taking away touches and he exploded as the lead back against New England. Michael’s days as the focal point of the running game are over. Hopefully you have depth, and Michael was a waiver wire pickup in the first place.
4. Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers
Six catches for 45 yards over the past two weeks is miserable. It seems apparent that Jordy Nelson and Davante Adams are the top options in the Packers’ passing game. There is always that possibility of a big game from Cobb, but there may not be enough time or reason to trust him at this point.
The Verdict: Definitely Cause for Concern
Cobb may not be trustworthy of a starting WR in many leagues depending on your overall depth at the position. Cobb is really just three weeks away from some monstrous performances, so the possibility of him bouncing back is always there. Perhaps the Packers’ floundering offense is enough reason to go back to what was working from Weeks 5-7. For now worry, but you may have no choice but to keep playing him.
— Written by Chris Meyers, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and a member of the FSWA. Meyers' work appears on many other sites, including socalledfantasyexperts.com. Follow him on Twitter @FantsyChillpony.