Welcome to the AFC portion of the Target Hour of Power. Please hold your applause until the end.
For your dose of NFC targets clickety click.
Usually I like to look at red zone targets and touches, but I thought I’d scooch the line in from the 20 yard line to the 10 yard line for the chart below. In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month I dub this area the pink zone.
Ten Yard Line Rushing Looks Ten Yard Line Receiving Looks
Dennis Pitta: 9-15-7-2 (33), Ray Rice: 4-10-5-11 (30), Anquan Boldin: 5-4-7-12 (28), Torrey Smith: 3-5-10-10 (28), Jacoby Jones: 3-2-4-7 (16), Vonta Leach: 3-1-3-2 (9), Ed Dickson: 3-4-2-0 (9), Tandon Doss: 0-1-0-2 (3), Deonte Thompson: 2-0-0-0 (2), Bernard Pierce: 0-0-1-0 (1)
The demise of Dennis Pitta is most likely a one week anomaly, but it is painful to see when you finally feel good about starting him on your fantasy team. He is still receiving over 20% of all the Ravens targets on the season, which is darn good for a tight end.
Anquan Boldin put up a big target game, which amazingly turned into real receptions and yardage. His 9 receptions for 131 yards is how Boldin rolls. Last season he had two 130+ receiving yardage games, but in the rest he averaged 50 yards receiving and finished the season with three touchdowns. Torrey Smith should help him get open easier, but with Pitta and Ray Rice getting most of the red zone work, it’s going to be tough for Boldin to get into the end zone more.
Steve Johnson: 10-5-11-10 (36), Scott Chandler: 6-5-4-8 (23), Donald Jones: 7-3-6-3 (19), T.J. Graham: dnp-1-5-8 (14), C.J. Spiller: 3-3-2-2 (10), Tashard Choice: 0-1-5-1 (7), David Nelson: 5-dnp-dnp-dnp (5), Brad Smith: dnp-1-0-2 (3), Fred Jackson: 0-dnp-dnp-3 (3), Dorin Dickerson: 0-0-dnp-2 (2), Corey McIntyre: 0-0-2-0 (2), Lee Smith: 1-0-0-0 (1)
This week was Scott Chandler’s coming out party of sorts. His eight targets were the most he’s ever had in a game and of course his two touchdowns as well. He is seeing 18.4% of the targets while Stevie Johnson is still the main man with 28.8%. Chandler will need to not dip back down to four or even five targets if he wants to be consistent.
Rookie T.J. Graham saw a goodly amount of targets, but only caught half of them for 34 yards. But he did see the second most passing snaps. He’s a wild card, but has big play ability for deep leaguers.
Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller split time on the field pretty evenly, but Jackson had 16 touches to Spiller’s 10. Spiller was a little iffier for this game than Jackson, so it was good to see him at least share time. It looks like they will dampen each other’s fantasy value as long as both are healthy.
A.J. Green: 11-12-11-9 (43), Jermaine Gresham: 8-5-7-5 (25), Andrew Hawkins: 9-3-4-3 (19), Armon Binns: 5-5-3-5 (18), BenJarvus Green-Ellis: 2-3-1-3 (9), Brandon Tate: 2-3-0-0 (5), Orson Charles: 0-0-1-1 (2), Chris Pressley: 0-0-0-2 (2), Marvin Jones: 0-0-dnp-2 (2), Brian Leonard: 0-0-1-1 (2)
A.J. Green is seeing 34% of his team’s targets, which is second in the NFL. Jermaine Gresham is second with 19.7%, which is good enough if he could just get into the end zone more often. Right now Green leads him in red zone targets seven to five.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis is the bell cow back, but I’m starting to think the bell weighs a couple hundred pounds. The Law Firm is the definition of a back that needs 20-30 looks a game to be relevant, and even then he needs a touchdown to really help. His three targets look to be his ceiling, but if he could get that number up, his value goes up.
Greg Little: 4-7-4-10 (25), Trent Richardson: 3-5-7-6 (21), Mohamed Massaquoi: 8-7-3-dnp (18), Ben Watson: 2-1-8-6 (17), Travis Benjamin: 6-0-4-5 (15), Josh Gordon: 4-3-6-1 (14), Jordan Cameron: 1-0-7-6 (14), Chris Ogbonnaya: dnp-6-3-4 (13), Jordan Norwood: dnp-dnp-dnp-10 (10), Josh Cribbs: 0-2-1-2 (5), Alex Smith: 1-4-dnp-dnp (5), Brandon Jackson: 4-dnp-dnp-dnp (4), Owen Marecic: 2-1-0-0 (3)
Thirteen Browns players have had a football thrown at them from one angle or another. Greg Little and Jordan Norwood are the only Browns with 10 targets in a game and both happened last week. That had a lot to do with Weeden needing to throw the ball 52 times, but the real problem for their receivers is that once they get into the red zone, it’s Trent Richardson time. The Browns are going to have to show me they can support a fantasy receiver.
Richardson is fourth in targets for running backs, which I’m giddy over. So even on a poor rushing night, like last week, he still ended up with 104 total yards, four receptions and a touchdown. I’m all on board the T-Rich train of pain (to defenders, not fantasy owners, but you probably got that, or maybe not, I’m just not sure, that’s why I wrote all of this I suppose.)
Demaryius Thomas: 7-11-11-6 (35), Eric Decker: 7-8-11-9 (35), Jacob Tamme: 5-4-10-6 (25), Brandon Stokley: 3-6-6-2 (17), Joel Dreessen: 2-2-5-3 (12), Willis McGahee: 1-2-2-6 (11), Lance Ball: 0-2-3-2 (7), Ronnie Hillman: dnp-dnp-1-2 (3), Matthew Willis: 1-1-1-dnp (3), Chris Gronkowski: 0-0-1-0 (1), Andre Caldwell: dnp-dnp-dnp-1 (1), Knowshon Moreno: 0-1-dnp-dnp (1)
Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas have the exact same number of targets. There were plenty of arguments in preseason about who would be Peyton Manning’s go to receiver and it seems the answer is both. Thomas is going to be the big play receiver, but still is only three receptions behind Decker. He’s made some bone-headed plays and could be ahead of Decker even more in the fantasy world.
After those two, the receiving game gets spread out a little too thin for my taste. Jacob Tamme and Joel Dreessen are going to hurt each other’s value. The two are tied with three red zone targets each.
Willis McGahee continues to play well and fits the Manning offense perfectly. He also caught all six of his targets, which is a great sign. The emergence of Ronnie Hillman this week was partly due to the lopsided nature of the score, but there’s no doubt the team wants Hillman to get more snaps so he could be ready to step up if McGahee’s oldness catches up with him. Lance Ball has been the main backup, but the Broncos want their third round pick to shine.
Owen Daniels: 8-9-5-6 (28), Andre Johnson: 10-4-4-6 (24), Kevin Walter: 2-4-6-3 (15), James Casey: 2-4-3-5 (14), Arian Foster: 3-7-1-2 (13), Keshawn Martin: 1-2-4-3 (10), Ben Tate: 3-4-0-2 (9), Garrett Graham: 0-1-4-1 (6), Lestar Jean: 2-0-1-dnp (3)
It may be time for Andre Johnson owners to be concerned. Of course there were reasons to be concerned going into the season, but the fact that Owen Daniels leads him in targets through four weeks is worrisome. He’ll remain a top player due to his amazing ability, but without being force fed targets, he’ll have trouble consistently putting up bug fantasy numbers.
The Texans are a run first team and when they get into the red zone, they run it even more. And if they don’t run it in the red zone they throw it to their tight ends. So far the red zone targets and touches look like so: Foster 26, Tate 4, Forsett 4, Daniels 2, Casey 2, Walter 1, Martin 1, and Johnson 1. That leads to not much touchdown love for A.J.