Ed Williams III

Snapdraft Football

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Under the Cap: Week 8

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Snapdraft is a weekly game in which you select a team that fits under a $27 million salary cap. There’s a wide variety of league sizes, and while each league costs at least $1, there are cash prizes as well. Each week I’ll take a look at the matchups and the salaries and put together a winning combination. Since there’s a salary cap, you can’t just stack your team with a bunch of studs, so finding some bargains will be key. Here’s the Week 8 squad.

 

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Quarterback

Michael Vick, Eagles, $5,800,000, vs. Cowboys
The electric quarterback of the Eagles has spent much of this season trying to flee defenders, but the offensive line finally looked much more stable against a tough Redskins defense in Week 6. Coming off a bye, and with Jason Peters back, the OL should be even more improved, which will give Vick more time to hit DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, LeSean McCoy and others. Look for Vick to throw for a couple TDs and run for at least one more on Sunday Night Football against the Cowboys.

Other value picks
Andy Dalton, Bengals, $3,270,000, at Seahawks – The rookie hasn’t put up huge yardage numbers, but it’s clear he’s getting more comfortable with A.J. Green, Jerome Simpson and the rest of his offense. Look for about 250 yards and a couple TDs.

Philip Rivers, Chargers, $5,350,000, at Chiefs – Rivers isn’t cheap, but due to some early season struggles, he’s cheaper than he should be. Look for him to bounce back against a Chiefs team that is probably overachieving a bit right now.

Running back

Chris Johnson, Titans, $3,850,000, vs. Colts
C.J. is arguably the biggest bust of the season so far, but there is just too much talent here to be ignored. The Colts have an anemic defense, so it’s a perfect recipe for Johnson to get things turned around. Look for him to break a couple of big runs for TDs, which will make him a steal at this price.

Bernard Scott, Bengals, $3,670,000, at Seahawks
Cedric Benson will finally serve his suspension, so Scott gets the call here. In the four career games Bernard Scott has received double-digit rushes, he's averaged 4.6 yards per carry, which bodes well for Sunday. Scott has a lot on the line as an impressive performance should guarantee him more carries even after Benson returns.

Other value picks
Daniel Thomas, Dolphins, $2,900,000, at Giants – The Dolphins are arguably the worst team in the league, but Thomas has been impressive at times. The Giants aren’t a great matchup, but Thomas will get plenty of carries as Reggie Bush just isn’t the answer. At his price, it’s worth a risk to roll the dice with Thomas.

Roy Helu, Redskins, $2,190,000, at Bills – It’s always risky taking one of Mike Shanahan’s running backs, but with Tim Hightower out for the year, Helu’s carries will definitely increase. Ryan Torain may be in line to be the feature back, but if Helu gets hot, Shanahan will likely keep riding him. This is a high risk/high reward pick to say the least.

Wide receiver

Michael Crabtree, $1,820,000, vs. Browns – We’re going cheap at WR again this week. Crabtree led all 49ers wide receivers in snaps in Week 6 and came through with nine catches for 77 yards. He hasn’t found the end zone yet, but look for that to change Sunday.

Demaryius Thomas, Broncos, $1,970,000, vs. Lions – Thomas saw his first action last week, coming back from an injury. While he only recorded three receptions for 27 yards, he did score a TD and was clearly Tim Tebow’s favorite target. He has plenty of upside and a cheap price tag, so sign him up!

Other value picks
Doug Baldwin, Seahawks, $1,300,000, vs. Bengals – It’s always risky going with a Seahawks receiver, but Baldwin is the best bet of the bunch. Baldwin was blanked against the Browns, but the week before that he hauled in eight balls for 136 yards and a TD. This is a hit or miss pick, but worth the risk at such a low price.

Anquan Boldin, Ravens, $2,850,000, vs. Cardinals – The Ravens’ offense looked absolutely pathetic against the Jags last Monday night, so look for the Ravens to try and erase that taste from their mouths as soon as possible. Joe Flacco will want to get on track quickly, and Boldin is the best way to do that.

Tight end

Jimmy Graham, Saints, $3,010,000, at Rams – Graham is just a flat-out stud right now. Drew Brees is slinging touchdowns all over the field, and Graham is a great bet for at least one score every week. He’s the most expensive TE on the board, but he’s well-worth the investment. This one is a no-brainer.

Other value picks
Jared Cook, Titans, $1,360,000, vs. Colts – Matt Hasselbeck just doesn’t have a lot of options in the passing game, so the athletic Coook could be in line for a nice day against a bad Colts defense. He also has two touchdowns in his last three games.

Visanthe Shiancoe, Vikings, $1,350,000, at Panthers – The switch to Christian Ponder at QB provided the tight end with a nice boost. Against the Packers, he hauled in four receptions including a touchdown. Look for Shiancoe to have more scoring opportunities this week against the Panthers.

Team defense/special teams

New Orleans Saints, $1,550,000, at Rams
The Saints came up huge last week against the Colts in a bloodbath on Sunday Night Football. They get the almost-as-bad Rams this week, so look for another impressive performance. If Sam Bradford is out for a second straight week, the Saints could have another field day.

Other value picks
San Diego Chargers, $2,040,000, at Chiefs – The Chiefs put up 28 points last week against the Raiders, but that had more to do with the Oakland offense being inept. Look for San Diego to put the clamps down and get back on the winning track.

Cincinnati Bengals, $2,290,000, at Seahawks – The Bengals have been one of the league’s best defenses, and the Seahawks have been one of the league’s worst offenses – that’s a recipe for success.

Kicker

Rob Bironas, Titans, $2,150,000, vs. Colts – The Titans were embarrassed by the Texans last week, so look for them to bounce back against the Colts. Bironas will have plenty of scoring opportunities, and you just have to hope it’s not all extra points.

Other value picks
Shaun Suisham, Steelers, $2,300,000, vs. Patriots – This one could turn into a shootout, which means Suisham could be in line for plenty of points.

Olindo Mare, Panthers, $2,500,000, at Vikings – Mare was money last week against the Redskins, and this week he’ll be in a dome, which always helps.

Flex

Christian Ponder, Vikings, $2,900,000, at Panthers
While Christian Ponder didn’t light the world on fire last week against the Packers, it was clear the Vikings’ offense was better with him under center. He threw for 212 yards and two TDs, and I look for those numbers to improve this week, making him a great flex play at under $3 million.











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