Chris Wesseling

Waiver Wired

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It's the Matchup, Stupid

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Tight Ends

Jared Cook, Titans - Those who have been following along for weeks realize there’s very little predictability here. Coming off back-to-back catchless games, Cook exploded for season-highs across the board with 11 targets, nine receptions, and 103 yards against the Colts in Week 15. The Titans are once again looking to get Cook more involved in the offense, but he remains a hit-or-miss fantasy option versus the Jags.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Todd Heap, Cardinals - Finally healthy after battling a hamstring injury for two months, Heap broke out for season-highs in receptions (7) and yards (69) against the Browns in Week 15. The Cardinals were playing from behind and defensive attention was focused on Larry Fitzgerald, so there is plenty of reason to doubt Heap can repeat that performance at Cincinnati. Desperate owners can hang on their hat on the fact that the Bengals have twice given up 100-yard games to tight ends this year.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper leagues.

Kyle Rudolph, Vikings - This one is a shot in the dark for a player who hasn’t topped 50 yards in a game all year. The sure-handed athletic rookie is a primary red-zone read for Christian Ponder, though, and he played more snaps than Visanthe Shiancoe last week for the first time all season. Those snaps should increase again this week versus the Redskins as the Vikes look to the 2012 season. The Redskins and Bears allow the third- and fifth-most points to opposing tight ends.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper leagues.

Jacob Tamme, Colts - Dallas Clark (neck) was listed as a non-participation in Monday’s walkthrough, leaving his status in doubt for Thursday’s game versus the Texans. Tamme is on track to start, though it’s a tough matchup against a defense that allows the 29th-most points to opposing fantasy tight ends.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper leagues.

Cut Bait: Jake Ballard

Ballard sustained an injury to his PCL, leaving his status for Week 16 in doubt.

Defense/Special Teams

Titans - Tennessee is hosting a quarterback who had more lost fumbles than net passing yards, first downs, or drives across midfield by early in the third quarter of last week’s game. Blaine Gabbert’s skittish pocket presence and lack of awareness make him a dream matchup for opposing defenses.

Recommendation: Worth a look as a matchup play.

Seahawks - This screams “let-down game” for the 49ers on a short week at a Seattle, coming off a big nationally televised win over the Steelers. The Seahawks now boast a Top-10 fantasy defense with 12 interceptions, 15 sacks, and three defensive scores in the past five games.

Recommendation: Worth a look as a matchup play.

Eagles - Dropped in many leagues after a disappointing first half of the season, Philly has rejoined the top-five fantasy defenses thanks to a whopping 24 sacks over the past six weeks. It’s a risky play at Dallas with Tony Romo playing at a peak level, but this is now one of the hottest teams in the NFL.

Recommendation: Worth a look as a roll of the dice.
 


Chris Wesseling is a senior football editor and Dynasty league analyst for Rotoworld.com. The 2011 NFL season marks his fifth year with Rotoworld and his third year contributing to NBCSports.com. He can be found on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.
Email :Chris Wesseling



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