It’s that wonderful time of the week again to peer into my magical crystal ball and instead of the it giving me winning lottery numbers, it just gives me outrageous and sometimes hilarious fantasy predictions.
This week though it appears the magic crystal ball is in a bit of a sour mood because instead of the usual positive predictions, this week there are more negative ones than ever before!
Teams on bye: Arizona, Baltimore, Detroit, Houston, Kansas City, Seattle
Now onto the predictions!
DeAngelo Williams is A Bum (At Least for This Week)
If you were smart enough to stash Williams on your bench and/or get him as Le'Veon Bell’s handcuff, well played. If not, you probably tried to blow your entire FAAB budget this week to get him on your roster, which isn’t a terrible idea. Number one running backs on explosive offenses don’t usually become available this late in the season. The problem for all you new found Williams’ owners is this week the Steelers play the Raiders. The Raiders might have the most underrated defense in all of football. But this could be changing following last week's effort in which they held Chris Ivory to 17 yards on 15 carries. Everyone thinking that Williams will step in and instantly duplicate what he did in Weeks 1 and 2 when Bell was suspended should think again. Williams won’t even get 75 total yards this week against the Raiders.
Adrian Peterson and Todd Gurley Struggle, Barely Get 100 Yards COMBINED
Over the past three weeks guess who’s the No. 1 and No. 2 rush defenses in the NFL? If you guessed the St. Louis Rams and Minnesota Vikings, you win a prize (to be determined — never). Throw in the fact that Adrian Peterson is starting to show his age and is a little banged up, and you have a game that might end up 13-10. The only saving grace here is that even if Gurley is averaging 2.2 yards per carry, you know that Jeff Fisher is going to keep giving him the ball. This is going to be an ugly, ugly game.
Stevie Johnson Produces More Than 20 Fantasy Points On Monday Night
Johnson couldn’t find himself with a better opportunity. He’s finally healthy. Keenan Allen, The Chargers’ No. 1 receiver, is out for the year due to a lacerated kidney. Antonio Gates will still be Philip Rivers' go-to target, but Gates will be playing limited snaps like he did last week due to his MCL sprain. Throw in the fact that there really is no other competition for the No. 1 receiver spot (Malcolm Floyd is 34 years old and not capable of being the No. 1 receiver) and the only guy you have left standing is Johnson. It also helps that the Chargers are hosting the Chicago Bears and their defense that has given up the third-most fantasy points to wide receivers, and you’ve got a game where Johnson will be fantasy gold.
T.Y. Hilton, Randall Cobb and Allen Robinson Don’t Score 20 Fantasy Points COMBINED
It’s another tough week for Hilton and Cobb owners, but that shouldn’t be surprising since the two of them have been fantasy irrelevant all season. At least Robinson has played like a true WR1, even though he was drafted as a WR3 or WR4. This week none of these studs are going to do much fantasy-wise. Hilton and the Colts play the Broncos — enough said. Cobb can’t get open to save his life and will be covered by Josh Norman of the Carolina Panthers this week. Robinson is playing in New York against the Jets and he will be lined up against Darrelle Revis. If you’re smart you’ll bench these guys this week, but you probably won’t.
Jacob Tamme Plays Like Rob Gronkowski and Goes For 100-Plus Yards and 2 TDs
Some of you may be reading this and laughing to yourself because you didn’t even know that Tamme was still in the league. Didn’t Tamme disappear once Peyton Manning left Indianapolis? Apparently not. Now Tamme is the go-to tight end on a Falcons offense that is pretty darn good. All you really need to know is that whenever No. 2 wide receiver Leonard Hankerson doesn’t play, Tamme has a huge game. In the first game that Hankerson missed this season, Tamme caught eight passes for 94 yards. Then last week with Hankerson on the sidelines, Tamme went off for 10 catches, 103 yards and a touchdown. As Mat Ryan’s number No. 2 target this week against the 49ers you can bet that Tamme will get another 10-plus targets, another 100 receiving yards and this time he’ll score two touchdowns.
Drew Brees Does It Again! Well, Almost
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, by now I’m sure you’ve heard about this little game that was held in New Orleans last week between the Giants and the Saints. A game that ended 52-49 in which Brees threw for more than 500 yards and seven, yes seven, touchdowns. This week the lowly Tennessee Titans come marching into town and what will Brees do for an encore? Well, unfortunately 500 passing yards and another seven touchdowns is out of the equation because the Titans' offense isn’t good enough to keep up. But Brees will easily put up another 400 yards passing and four TDs this week, by the end of the third quarter.
The only other predictions that I have left are way too easy.
Like Andrew Luck will throw four interceptions this week against Denver. That’s not a bold prediction. Neither is Tom Brady will throw for five touchdown passes against the Redskins. Both those things are likely to happen.
So that’s it for this week’s predictions.
— 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.