As you gear up for this weekend’s upcoming games by realigning your fantasy rosters to optimize matchups, let’s take a quick look back at last week’s studs. (Note: Points listed are directly from the First and Goal Fantasy League and may not represent point totals in your individual leagues)
QB: Matt Hasselbeck, Seattle Seahawks — Overcoming a fractured rib (which required pain-killing injections), Hasselbeck looked better than most 100% healthy quarterbacks last week. He completed 18 of 30 passes for 241 yards and 4 touchdowns. He threw no interceptions and even added 24 yards rushing to compile 30 fantasy points. Not bad for an aging quarterback with busted ribs.
RB: Ahmad Bradshaw, New York Giants — One man taking responsibility for raising his fantasy stock on his own (he certainly doesn’t get much public love) was Bradshaw. Rushing for 110 yards and 2 touchdowns, he had a solid outing last week. Add to that his 55 receiving yards and Bradshaw suddenly becomes the top running back last week with 28 fantasy points.
*Fantasy Stud of the Week*
WR: Miles Austin, Dallas Cowboys — SLEEPER ALERT! Austin, the third wide receiver on Dallas’ depth chart, had the single greatest receiving game in the prolific history of the Cowboys. Getting the nod for his first career start due to Roy Williams’ injury, Austin made the most of the opportunity by pulling in 10 receptions for an unprecedented 250 yards, including touchdowns of 59 and 60 yards. He also added 24 return yards for anyone keeping score at home. He may not put up 38 fantasy points every week, but head coach Wade Phillips insists he will continue to see the same amount of playing time in the future.
TE: Kellen Winslow, Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Winslow once again proved that he is must-start fantasy material. In Week 5, he hauled in 9 passes for 102 yards and 2 touchdowns. More of a receiving hybrid than a true tight end, Winslow currently leads all Buccaneer receivers in receptions, yards, and touchdowns. His 22 fantasy points were tops in the league amongst tight ends last week.
K: Lawrence Tynes, New York Giants — After barely missing the top kicking spot for several weeks, Tynes was finally the best fantasy kicker in Week 5 with a 14 point performance after successfully kicking three field goals and adding 5 PATs. An obvious benefactor of being on a good team, Tynes should continue to be one of the top kickers for the rest of the season.
D/ST: Seattle Seahawks — Facing one of the league’s best running backs (Maurice Jones-Drew) and a quarterback that just came off a career game (David Garrard), the Seahawk defense was obviously not intimidated. Racking up 5 sacks, 2 fumble recoveries and a touchdown, all while giving up 0 points to the Jaguars, Seattle cruised to a 25 point fantasy outing last week, more than most offensive weapons were able to muster.
ROOKIE: Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia Eagles — Another player to benefit from a teammate’s injury (Kevin Curtis) last week was Maclin. The rising star easily had the best game of his young career by grabbing 6 receptions for 142 yards and 2 touchdowns. Despite a lack of size, Maclin appears to have the potential to be a future fantasy stud. His 26 fantasy points last week not only made him the top rookie of the week, it also landed him in the top 10 of all fantasy performers for Week 5.
Check back next week for another edition of Fantasy Focus as we recognize the week’s best fantasy performers. Best of luck to you in your respective fantasy football leagues!
Note: To quickly view all of my Fantasy Focus posts, simply click the Fantasy Focus banner at the top of any such post!