Every week I’ll address some topics that have my head spinning after Sunday’s action:
I was very surprised to field as many questions I did about using the Chiefs’ RB in a fantastic matchup like playing the Saints. I could see the dilemma for owners that were stacked with a pair of top 10 running backs, but others were too quick to give up on him. He erased all doubts by carrying the ball 33 times for 233 yards and a touchdown and added six catches for 55 yards. Both the workload (39 touches) and production should silence critics. Let’s not forget though that he won’t face New Orleans every week.
The Cowboys’ offense turned in a huge dud at home to a Bucs’ defense that was lit like a Christmas tree a week earlier vs. the Giants. Murray was a big part of the problem as he tallied only 38 yards on 18 carries. Thankfully for owners he did find the end zone and caught a trio of Tony Romo passes so it wasn’t a complete dud. Still, the fact he has now rushed for a grand total of 82 yards on 30 carries (2.7 ypc) over his last two outings raises reason for concern. He gets the Bears, a bye and then Baltimore over his next three games, so relief is likely to come any time soon.
I stashed Leshoure long ago, hoping that he could emerge as the Lions’ primary running back upon his return. One week in he delivered. Leshoure not only started, but he carried the load for the Lions Sunday at Tennessee, rushing for 100 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries and catching four balls for 34 yards. The biggest surprise was that Kevin Smith, who led the team in rushing the first two weeks, did not receive a single carry in the game. While it would be smart to hold onto Smith, he isn’t a lineup option until further notice.
The Patriots dropped their second straight game in Sunday night’s loss to the Ravens and the offense seems out of whack. One thing that is looking like a lock though is Lloyd has emerged as Tom Brady’s top target. Lloyd had his first 100-yard outing of the season pulling nine of his team-high 12 targets for 108 yards. He hasn’t found the end zone yet, but that will come soon enough. He is a must-start option in nearly any lineup, especially in PPR formats.
Rivers failed to throw a TD pass in Sunday’s loss against Atlanta posting a dismal 45.3 QB rating. The veteran managed just 173 yards, 0 TD’s and 2 INT’s on 21-of-38 passing. It’s clear that Rivers has little chemistry with newcomer Robert Meachem and the receiving corps lacks a true No. 1. With starting running back Ryan Mathews returning from injury to make the start, I was anticipating good things for the Chargers’ offense, but that was not the case. Rivers is hard to view as weekly lineup lock and is now more of a matchup play.
--Michael Vick, Chris Johnson, Mark Ingram, Demaryius Thomas, Vincent Jackson
--Christian Ponder, Jake Locker, Jacquiz Rodgers, Santonio Holmes, TY Hilton, Heath Miller