They are who we thought they were.
Or so it appears, anyways, after the Bills' first loss of the season has left a sour taste in some fans' mouths.
I wonder what Dennis Green thinks of the Bills' 3-1 start.
They were the league's biggest surprise so far until they ran into the Bengals last week perhaps a little too over-confident.A squandered 14-point halftime lead and a game winning drive on the shoulders of a rookie quarterback have brought the Bills back down to earth heading into a game versus the underachieving Philadelphia Eagles -- a contest which is sure to be a true gut test for this team.
Aside from the Bills, within the fantasy world there haven't really been too many big surprises so far. Aside from the struggles a few big named players, everything has gone according to plan. Which is extremely unusual for the NFL, especially following a year where Brandon Lloyd and Arian Foster came out of nowhere to win many fantasy league titles.
This means you probably haven't come across any gems on the waiver wire to this point.
Guys who banked on Aaron Rodgers and grabbed Wes Welker late in their drafts are sitting pretty while Chris Johnson owners are already looking ahead until next year.
This is the week that could start changing all of this uniformity. With the bye weeks here, everything gets a little more difficult and the waiver pickups a little more important. So make sure you're staying on top of things. These next few weeks often determine league champions.
A "stud" constitutes a player I feel is a must-start as he displays a very favorable match-up and is primed to put up a ton of points for that particular week.
A "dud" is a player who I feel is put into starting lineups far too often for that particular week or simply won't perform up to expectations. In all likelihood, there is a much better option for your starting lineup than a "dud" based upon match-ups for the week.
*All statistics and projections are based off of the standard Yahoo! Sports PPR league scoring system.
Before we get to the Studs of week three, excuse me as I gloat (and bite my tongue) while we look over my predictions from last week.
Week 4 Told'ya So (Studs)
Eli Manning QB NYG
Projected: 342 YDS, 2 TD 0 INT, 18 PTS
Actual: 321 YDS, 2 TD 0 INT, 17 PTS
Darren Sproles RB NO
Projected: 178 TOTYDS, 8 REC, 1 TD, 22 PTS
Actual: 131 TOTYDS, 5 REC, 0 TD, 12 PTS
Jermaine Gresham TE CIN
Projected: 9 REC 97 YDS, 1 TD, 18 PTS
Actual: 4 REC 70 YDS, 1 TD, 12 PTS
Week 4 Eating Crow (Studs)
Tim Hightower RB WAS
Projected: 174 TOTYDS, 6 REC, 1 TD, 21 PTS
Actual: 28 TOTYDS, 1 REC, 0 TD, 2 PTS
Nate Washington WR TEN
Projected: 6 REC 91 YDS, 1 TD, 16 PTS
Actual: 2 REC 62 YDS, 0 TD, 4 PTS
Johnny Knox WR CHI
Projected: 5 REC 134 YDS, 1 TD, 16 PTS
Actual: 3 REC 48 YDS, 0 TD, 4 PTS
Week 1 Success Rate: 4/6, 66%
Week 2 Success Rate: 5/6, 83%
Week 3 Success Rate: 2/6, 33%
Week 4 Success Rate: 3/6, 50%
Matt Ryan QB ATL
Matchup vs Green Bay
Matt Ryan has put together a disappointing start to this season to say the least, but things may not be as bad as they seem for Matty Ice. Regardless of his struggles, I remain confident that Ryan is still a top-10 quarterback talent in the league. I can't see this Falcons offense struggling for much longer this season and I believe this week against the Packers will be the start of their upswing. Surprisingly, Green Bay has given up the 10th most fantasy points to opposing QBs, mainly because clubs are normally playing catch up after Aaron Rodgers tosses for a few touchdowns. This week won't be any different. I can see a shootout here where both teams benefit, especially Matt Ryan.
Week 5 Forecast: 27/35 314 YDS, 3 TD 1 INT, 23 PTS
Honorable mention: Josh Freeman, Eli Manning
Stevan Ridley RB NE
Matchup vs New York Jets
Ridley was probably the most coveted free agent pickup in your fantasy league this week after his 97-yard, 1-touchdown performance last week. While Ridley didn't touch the ball all that much, his play confirmed that he is indeed New England's back of choice going forward. Now obviously this is still a pass-first offense, but running backs have put up good fantasy numbers in this system before. The matchup on paper doesn't look that great for the rookie but the Jets allowed Ray Rice to run all over them last week, and after Ridley's nice week don't be surprised if Belichick uses Ridley more than enough to justify starting him in your lineup this week and going forward.
Week 5 Forecast: 14 CAR 109 YDS, 1 TD, 2 REC 12 YDS, 17 PTS
Ahmad Brandshaw RB NYG
Matchup vs Seattle
Ahmad Bradshaw has been relatively quiet so far this season but he's also turned in a few nice games. Seattle is actually pretty good against the run but Michael Turner blasted them for two scores last week. I'd expect much of the same from Bradshaw this week as all it'll take is a few big plays for him to have a productive game.
Week 5 Forecast: 21 CAR 113 YDS, 1 TD, 4 REC 27 YDS, 1 TD, 24 PTS
Honorable mention: Fred Jackson, Cedric Benson
DeSean Jackson WR PHI
Matchup vs Buffalo
Jackson headlines a group of disappointments so far this year. I guess that whole contract ordeal hurt him more than he anticipated. But this week, things could change for the speedy receiver. We're all aware of the Bills' secondary issues. Opposing passing attacks have torn the Bills D apart so far this season. So, if Andy Dalton and A.J. Green can do it, I remain relatively certain DeSean Jackson will get his fair share of shots down field in this one. He's bound to out-play McKelvin for a touchdown or two.
Week 5 Forecast: 6 REC 129 YDS, 1 TD, 17 PTS
Jacoby Jones WR HOU
Matchup vs Oakland
Many owners took a big blow to their roster this week after learning Andre Johnson will be out for a few weeks. As a result, the always under-acheiveing Jacoby Jones was a hot waiver wire item this week. He's disappointed many times in the past, but the Raiders have a few injuries in their secondary and Jones is now the go-to guy. Only time will tell, but if Arian Foster can't get going early I think Schaub turns to Jones and gets him a few targets.
Week 5 Forecast: 5 REC 97 YDS, 1 TD, 14 PTS
Honorable mention: Marques Colston, Julio Jones
Brandon Pettigrew TE DET
Matchup vs Chicago
Personally, Pettigrew has killed my TE slot in most of my leagues so far this season. He's made his way from draft day steal, to me cutting him only to find his way back on my roster the following week after going off for 11 catches. Calvin Johnson is the best WR in the NFL and obviously he's the first one Stafford looks to in any passing situation, but the Bears are giving up the most points to the opposing TE in the league, so that doesn't hurt. I think we could see a repeat of a few weeks ago from Pettigrew where he receives a bunch of catches. Great for PPR and my fantasy team.
Week 5 Forecast: 8 REC 94 YDS, 1 TD, 17 PTS
Honorable mention: Owen Daniels, Scott Chandler
Week 4 Told'ya So(Duds)
Brandon Marshall WR MIA
Projected: 4 REC 62 YDS, 0 TD, 6 PTS
Actual: 5 REC 57 YDS, 0 TD, 7 PTS
Miles Austin WR DAL
Projected: 5 REC 71 YDS, 0 TD, 7 PTS
Actual: Did not play
Fred Davis TE WAS
Projected: 2 REC 21 YDS, 0 TD, 2 PTS
Actual: 4 REC 34 YDS, 0 TD, 5 PTS
Week 4 Eating Crow(Duds)
Josh Freeman QB TB
Projected: 247 YDS, 1 TD 3 INT, 7 PTS
Actual: 287 YDS, 1 TD, 27 YDS, 1 TD, 18 PTS
Michael Turner RB ATL
Projected: 85 YDS, 2 REC, 0 TD, 6 PTS
Actual: 88 TOTYDS, 2 REC,2 TD, 18 PTS
Arian Foster RB HOU
Projected: 72 TOTYDS, 4 REC, 0 TD, 7 PTS
Actual: 166 TOTYDS, 3 REC, 1 TD, 19 PTS
Week 1 Success Rate: 3/6, 50%
Week 2 Success Rate: 3/6, 50%
Week 3 Success Rate: 4/6, 66%
Week 4 Succes Rate: 3/6, 50%
Overall (Combined Studs & Duds): Week 6-6, Season 27-21.
Ben Roethlisberger QB PIT
Matchup vs Tennessee
Everyone acts like we haven't seen struggles from Roethlisberger before. News flash, he's experienced plenty of hardships throughout his career. He's no fantasy stud, and anyone who drafted him like one is now paying the price. Big Ben is a little shaken up heading into this game. Assuming he plays, which is likely, Roethlisberger is faced with a Titans defense that has looked lights out so far this season. I'm picking Tennessee to win this game despite the Steelers having the home field edge. I wouldn't count on Roethlisberger for anything substantial if I were you.
Week 5 Forecast: 19/31 203 YDS, 0 TD 2 INT, 2 PTS
Honorable mentions: Kyle Orton, Mark Sanchez
Beanie Wells RB ARI
Matchup vs Minnesota
Beanie Wells had the game of his career last week. If you started him in your league, props to you, because I didn't. This week will be different, however, against the Vikings. Now Minnesota's D has been mediocre at best this season but their front-7 is actually pretty formidable. This game in my mind will produce some fantasy points, just not by way of Beanie Wells. Look for the passing game to play a big role for the Cardinals here.
Week 5 Forecast: 21 CAR 83 YDS, 0 TD, 2 REC 19 YDS, 7 PTS
Frank Gore RB SF
Matchup vs Tampa Bay
Gore found his way back into fantasy relevance last week but I think it was more of just a luck of the draw type deal than anything. I still don't believe he's 100% so you combine that with the fact he's playing a pretty good run defense and it probably doesn't mean fantasy prosperity for his owners. If you've got nothing else, stick with the hot hand, but there are many better options than Gore this week.
Week 5 Forecast: 22 CAR 76 YDS, 0 TD, 0 REC, 5 PTS
Honorable mentions: LaGarrette Blount, Rashard Mendenhall
Pierre Garcon WR IND
Matchup vs Kansas City
Every time I see Garcon catch a pass I can't help but envision him closing his eyes and reaching his arms out as the ball approaches in hope that it somehow falls right into his mitts. I mean the dude just drops everything. He got lucky last week on a few big plays and now everyone is jumping on board with him against a Chiefs defense that has been horrendous so far. Painter possesses a big arm, but I just don't see Garcon doing much productive here.
Week 5 Forecast: 2 REC 24 YDS, 0 TD, 2 PTS
Mike Wallace WR PIT
Matchup vs Tennesse
See Roesthlisberger, Ben. That injury hurt more than just Big Ben's fantasy value, and Wallace has lacked the targets the past few games to begin with anyways.
Week 5 Forecast: 4 REC 52 YDS, 0 TD, 6 PTS
Honorable mentions: Dwayne Bowe, Roddy White
Jared Cook TE TEN
Matchup vs Pittsburgh
Here's another guy who everyone is eating up after a flukey play or two provided him with a prodcutive fantasy week last week. A sleeper pick at TE for many to begin the season, the big TE hasn't been a big part of this offense at all. Of course with Britt gone he could always see more targets but he's got to show me he can produce before I rely on him. Pittsburgh's D might be taking a step back, but their still one of the best defenses around. You can't rely on him in this one.
Week 5 Forecast: 3 REC 43 YDS, 0 TD, 4 PTS
Honorable mentions: Greg Olsen, Heath Miller
Buffalo Bills Fantasy Meter: Week 5 vs Philadelphia
This one looks like yet another Bills game will produce a ton of fantasy points as Vick and an explosize Eagles offense marches into the Ralph to face off against a Bills defense that certainly has its issues. On the flip side, The Eagles have major weaknesses at linebacker and are one of the worst teams at stopping the run this season. That bodes well for Fred Jackson in this one. I expect Jackson to put up numbers comparable to the line he put together against the Raiders a few weeks ago. As for Fitzpatrick, the Bills could easily find themselves playing catch up early and often here and if that happens, Fitz, Stevie Johnson and Scott Chandler could all benefit. Expect another high-scoring affair here in Buffalo this weekend as each offense poses a big threat to the opposing defense.
Disagree with something I said? Well, let me hear it in the comment box! Better yet, follow me on Twitter if you seek answers to any additional fantasy questions you may have @THWGoldSchlager.