Tuesday, October 1, 2013

FAABulous: Fantasy Football Pick-ups Week 5

Matt Schaub's job and his jersey are under fire in Houston. (cbssports.com)
FAABulous will recap the week of football activity and point fantasy owners where to spend their hard earned (not really) FAAB or waiver priority. Players will be owned in at most 50% of Yahoo! FFL. This is the one time where mo' money probably wouldn't mean mo' problems.

Cute is what I thought when I heard that Houston Texans' fans were burning Matt Schaub jerseys after the Texans blew a 17 point lead and lost in overtime to the road weary Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. First off, you own a Matt Schaub jersey? Good thing there aren't any world class players on your team like Arian Foster or J.J. Watt. You opt for Schaub? #Smrt decision (h/t Keith Law).

Second, I found it cute that a franchise that has existed for 12 years had to suffer for 9 long seasons before they became one of the best teams in football. I understand the frustration and I respect the right to vent and boo, but burning jerseys? That's a bit much. That's reserved for fans that have been much more long suffering than the Texans (Google: Cleveland Cavaliers). I'm not passing judgment, believe me, I know what it's like to have a couple of idiots immediately brand your fan base. I'm sure if any Texans' fans are reading this, they're shaking their head at how stupid this was, but for me it was cute.

What the takeaway should be from Matt Schaub's critical interception in Sunday's game is that this is a franchise that is getting older. For the past 7 years the Texans have waited and begged and pleaded for Schaub to become something more than just a league average quarterback. Yes, you can win with league average, especially after the Texans developed one of the best defenses in the league, but this waiting period for Schaub is ultimately hurting them. Getting rid of him after 2 or 3 years would have been a bit hasty, but 5 or 6 years - now you have enough on the guy to make a clear decision. The Texans, however, decided to wait.

Sunday's game might have been the breaking point for the fans, but it should also have made a big impression on the Texans' GM Rick Smith. The window on this team is slowly closing. Andre Johnson's injuries are piling up, Arian Foster is slowing down, and the thing with a good defense is once you have one, then other teams come and get your players. Not that J.J. Watt is going anywhere but glue guys that make the defense strong all around get paid more money and make it more difficult for the team to hold onto them.

Unfortunately for the Texans, this is the NFL. Rarely do big-time trades happen, and even more rarely do big-time QBs hit the free agent market. If Schaub cannot rebound from this game and undoubtedly the most heat he has taken in Houston, then the Texans will have to look elsewhere. Developing a QB would have been a smart move a year or two ago, but as it stands, T.J. Yates is still the back-up and they didn't use a single pick in the 2013 draft on a QB. So now, they might have to take a look at Jay Cutler, Josh Freeman, or Michael Vick. There's the possibility of trading for a team's back-up, but again that seems to not be a step forward. 

What fantasy owners should take from this situation is that you don't want to spend your fantasy season riding a player that will ultimately drag you down. We are a quarter of the way through the season and there's still a lot of games to play. Players can turn it around, so if you feel strongly about a player - sure, stick with him, but if you have a C.J. Spiller on your hands don't sit on him and hope for the best. Make moves, go and overpay for a Frank Gore or Fred Jackson type. If you wait too long, you'll be out of the playoff hunt before you know it.

Hey, speaking of adding players, let's take a look at some Week 5 adds.

Robert Woods (10) has formed an immediate bond with E.J. Manuel (3) in Buffalo. (nfl.si.com)
Robert Woods, WR - BUF (13% owned) @ CLE

Sure Woods is a big, non-speedy receiver from USC. We've seen his type before. But Woods does appear to be different. He's playing virtually every snap, and using his quickness (i.e. not downfield speed) to make himself the preferred target of E.J. Manuel. 

Charles Clay, TE - MIA (48%) v BAL

Clay is taking advantage of his opportunity in Miami. The FB/TE is using his versatility and athleticism to get a lot of playing time alongside Ryan Tannehill. 

Justin Blackmon, WR - JAX (43%) +St. Louis Rams 

Back from suspension and back in our hearts, it's Justin Blackmon. Having Chad Henne throw him footballs does no one any favors, but Blackmon was on the end of double digit targets in each of his last 4 games last year. He has the potential to have huge games, but is worthy of a stash at this point.

Roy Helu, Jr., RB - WAS (13%) BYE

This is a precautionary add for any Alfred Morris owners. He dinged his ribs up, but fortunately has the Bye week to rest. I would expect Morris to be fine next week.

Brian Hoyer, QB - CLE (6%) v BUF

Hey, what can you say? When a guy plays well a guy plays well. Hoyer has led the Browns to two straight wins, and he comes from the Tom Brady School of Quarterbacking. He had a great game against a tough Bengals' defense, and now get's the terrible Bills' secondary on short rest. 


Nate Washington, WR - TEN (16%) v KC

I fell for Washington's big play ability last year, and it got me nowhere, so I'm not buying this Nate Washington. This doesn't have as much to do with Jake Locker's injury as you may think. Ryan Fitzpatrick can air the ball out, but especially this week against the Chiefs along with Washington's inconsistency gives me reason to stay away.

THE 1%

Sean McGrath, TE - KC (0%) @ TEN

Thanks to injuries to the two TEs above him on the depth chart, the Bearded One is taking on a cult following in Kansas City. His catches have gone up each week, and we all know the combination of Andy Reid and Alex Smith will provide a lot of opportunities for McGrath.

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