There are a few head-scratchers in this mix. So don’t get too excited on the waiver wire, but here are a few of the week’s top performers.
David Garrard, QB, Jaguars: 260 yards, 4 TDs, 1 fumble, 2 rushing yards, 1 rushing TD vs. Cowboys
Unfortunately, you can’t trust Garrard. Ever. He’ll have a game like this against the now-quitting Cowboys and follow it up with a stinker against a pitiful defense. If this performance convinces any owner to pay a decent price for his services, SELL SELL SELL.
Calvin Johnson, WR, Lions: 9 catches for 101 yards, 3 TDs vs. Redskins
Matthew Stafford, QB, Lions: 212 yards, 4 TDs, 1 INT vs. Redskins
A huge fantasy day for these two young Lions’ stars made plenty of owners happy. The good news: Stafford should keep getting the ball to Megatron on a regular basis. Shaun Hill was putting up numbers like a top fantasy quarterback until he went down, and Stafford is more talented. Next week against the Jets, the Lions will face a greater challenge, but Stafford’s a clear must-own the rest of the way.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis, RB, Patriots: 112 yards, 2 TDs, 1 catch for 11 yards vs. Vikings
Just when we thought Danny Woodhead was the back you wanted to own in the Patriots’ offense, they change things up and go back to the “Law Firm” (BenJarvus Green-Ellis). It’s impossible to know what Belichick is thinking, but those in need can take a chance on Green-Ellis until the next Belichick tinkering hands off the ball to someone else.
Jamaal Charles, RB, Chiefs: 177 rushing yards, 61 receiving yards (238 total) vs. Bills
He’s capable of much more if only he didn’t have to share the rock with Thomas Jones. Maybe this lack of opportunity is all to keep Charles fresh for the playoffs, but it’s got to be incredibly frustrating for Charles and his fantasy owners. He’s bound to see increased touches as the season goes on. Haley’s got to be thinking the same, right?
Brandon Lloyd, WR, Broncos: 7 catches for 169 yards, 1 TD vs. 49ers
It’s always good to see your studs get back on track. Lloyd put together another amazing performance in this one after a couple of quiet weeks. Clearly, Orton only has eyes for Lloyd in this offense, and that’s a good thing for all the Lloyd owners out there.
Arian Foster, RB, Texans: 102 yards, 1 TD, 9 catches for 65 yards vs. Colts
Speaking of back on track, this stat line was not quite as amazing as Foster’s last performance against the Colts, but he didn’t disappoint any owners. Foster should keep on rolling unless he gets injured enough to give way to Derrick Ward.
LeGarrette Blount, RB, Bucs: 120 yards, 2 TDs vs. Cardinals
Mike Sims-Walker, WR, Jags: 8 catches for 153 yards, 1 TD vs. Cowboys
With Garrard returning to the field, Sims-Walker returned to fantasy relevance. His owners have to hope this will be the beginning of a beautiful friendship — between their Sims-Walker and the end zone. But keep in mind that Marcedes Lewis remains in the mix when the Jags get in the red zone, and he scored twice on Sunday against the Cowboys. His emergence as a touchdown machine will hurt Sims-Walker’s production all season long.
Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Cardinals: 6 catches for 72 yards, 2 TDs vs. Bucs
Yes, he’s alive.
Dan Carpenter, K, Dolphins: 5/5 FGs, 1 XP vs. Bengals
A kicker among the scoring leaders? It seems to happen every week. The Dolphins’ Carpenter has a great leg, if you’re looking for that kind of thing. It’s just hard to get excited about fantasy kickers.
Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Raiders: 5 catches for 105 yards, 1 TD vs. Seahawks
DHB was really the only Raiders’ receiving target left standing this week, and with no one to compete with for catches, he actually did something. His Week 8 performance showed us what he’s capable of if the stars align and if he catches the ball. More to come? To be determined. But he’s worth a grab as stash/sleeper play going into Week 9. The Raiders are likely to keep Louis Murphy and Chaz Schilens out until after their bye week in Week 10.