Rashad Jennings, RB (JAC)--The Jaguars will be without Maurice Jones-Drew for at least one week after he suffered a foot injury in the team’s Week 7 loss to the Raiders, which opens the door for Rashad Jennings to get the starting gig in his absence. Jennings was likely drafted as a handcuff to MJD after he was late reporting to training camp this offseason, but failed to get enough playing time to stay on rosters outside of the deepest of fantasy football leagues. The severity of MJD’s injury has yet to be determined, but considering he has already been ruled out for Week 8 and its only Monday means the injury is likely long term. Jennings failed to produce at a high level last week against the Raiders, finishing with just 44 yards on 21 carries, but that should change now that he is going to get reps with the first team at practice until further notice, so he is worth adding especially if you are an MJD owner.
LaRon Stephens-Howling, RB (ARI)--With both Beanie Wells and Ryan Williams absent in the Cardinals backfield, LaRon Stephens-Howling may have won the starting role after a spectacular showing on Sunday afternoon. Stephens-Howling rushed for a career-high 104 yards and a touchdown against a solid Vikings defense, which is a great showing considering how weak the Cardinals offensive line has been this season. Fellow running back William Powell, who led the team in carries in Week 6, received just four carries in Sunday’s loss so all signs are pointing to Stephens-Howling receiving the bulk of the carries moving forward. This week is going to be a rough game for whoever starts at running back for the cardinals considering they are playing the 49ers, but the majority of the season looks favorable for Stephens-Howling.
Phillip Tanner, RB (DAL)--The Cowboys may be without both DeMarco Murray and Felix Jones this weekend against the Giants, and if that does happen, Phillip Tanner would be in line to get the bulk of the carries. Murray was slated to test out his sprained left foot on Monday, but no reports have been released and Jones is suffering from a bruised knee which held him out of the final two drives on Sunday afternoon. With that said, Tanner has the chance on being a great play this week considering the high amount of rushing yards the Giants have given up the last few weeks. Even if Jones plays and Murray is inactive, he should receive enough carries to make him worth adding for this week based on the fact that he received just two fewer carries than Jones in last week’s win.
Santana Moss, WR (WAS)--Sometimes fantasy football owners write off players when they get old, but sometimes it is done too early. On Sunday in the absence on Pierre Garcon, Santana Moss found the end zone two times in a loss to the Giants, giving him new life moving forward. He was targeted four times hauling in three receptions for 67 yards and with both Garcon and Fred Davis out for a significant amount of time, Moss could have a lot of fantasy value as Robert Griffin continues to mature into an elite fantasy quarterback. Moss has now scored double-digit fantasy points in two of the last three weeks and it appears that will continue as he gets more playing time with all the team’s injuries in the passing game. If you are in a shallow league there are likely better options on the waiver-wire, but in standard leagues he is worth grabbing despite the notion that he is over the hill in football years.
Jeremy Kerley, WR (NYJ)--I waited as long as I could to tout Jeremy Kerley, and this week he finally caught my attention enough to feature him in my weekly column. Kerley torched the Patriots secondary for seven receptions for 120 yards in a loss and has now scored double-digit fantasy points in four of the team’s seven games this season. With Santonio Holmes out for the season, Kerley has really stepped up and is hauling in most of the targets thrown his way, which has really helped Mark Sanchez during some tough times. Right now he is owned in less than half of leagues throughout the fantasy world, which is going to go up as the week progresses. As long as the targets continue to go his way, he is worth adding in mostly all fantasy formats based off his playmaking ability.
Greg Little, WR (CLE)--This is the second time that Greg Little has snuck into this column and hopefully this time will be the last. Little had by far his best game of the season on Sunday hauling in six of his seven targets for 52 yards and turned was should’ve been an incomplete pass into an incredible touchdown-catch. He has shown in the past that he can get the job done, but he has had issues this season hanging onto the ball. Last week’s performance will hopefully give Brandon Weeden more confidence in him so that he could build off of this solid performance. For now, Little should only be added in deep leagues, but those in standard leagues should continue to watch his production to see if his role continues to increase as the season progresses.
Chris Givens, WR (STL)--Last week I featured Brandon Gibson as a must-add from the Rams passing game, but this week it is Chris Givens who demanded respect from fantasy owners. For the second week in a row Givens finished with three receptions for 85 yards and 73 yards respectively and has become the deep threat for quarterback Sam Bradford. Out of his six receptions form the previous two games, Givens has hauled in a 65-yard reception and a 56-yard reception, which in time should turn into a touchdown or two as the season progresses. Even when Danny Amendola returns from his injury Givens should still be a solid target for Bradford considering Amendola controls the short-to-intermediate routes in the Rams passing game. Based on his ability to get open deep down field, Givens should be targeted on the waiver-wire this week in all standard leagues along with PPR leagues.
Dustin Keller, TE (NYJ)--The Jets were happy to get Dustin Keller back on the field in Week 6 and this past Sunday he finally got back into the swing of things with quarterback Mark Sanchez. Keller finished with seven receptions for 92 yards and a touchdown in the Jets loss to the Patriots and returned to his normal role as Sanchez’s favorite target. This game marked the first time this season that Keller was fully healthy, so performances like this could be repeated as the season progresses. In standard leagues he is worth grabbing despite the inconsistency of the Jets offense, but the tight end position is also inconsistent this season, so he is worth giving a shot moving forward.
Russell Wilson, QB (SEA)--Russell Wilson may be coming off of his worst start as a starter this season, but this week he gets a very favorable matchup against the Lions in Detroit. He completed just 9-of-23 passes in Thursday’s loss to the 49ers, but that was also coming after a brilliant game against the Patriots just four days prior. The Lions has given up a lot of fantasy production to opposing quarterbacks this season, and with the likes of Andy Dalton, Joe Flacco and Matt Schaub all on bye-weeks in Week 8 he could be a solid addition if you own one of those quarterbacks.
Kai Forbath, K (WAS)--The Redskins were in need of a kicker prior to their Week 6 matchup against the Vikings and signed Kai Forbath just days before that game. In each of the two games he has kicked for the Redskins he has scored double-digit fantasy points making him a solid play moving forward. The Redskins don’t go on their bye-week until Week 10, so if you own a kicker that will be on a bye-week the next couple games, Forbath is a solid addition for short-term purposes.
San Diego Chargers Defense/Special Teams--The Chargers had a bye-week to get over their embarrassing loss to the Broncos in Week 6 and they get a great matchup to make up for it. In Week 8 the Chargers face off against the Browns, who have been inconsistent over the team’s first six games. The Chargers defense gave up five touchdowns to the Broncos in their last game, which is likely still lingering in the locker room, so expect this group to come out ready to go making them a nice addition for this week and for the rest of the season.
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Matthew Beck is a Fantasy Sports Columnist for Rotoinfo.com. If you have any questions or comments feel free to e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also follow him on Twitter @MatthewRBeck for up-to-date Q&A and fantasy information. And, to make setting your Fantasy Football lineup easy, be sure to utilize RotoInfo.com’s new NFL Lineup Grids.
Accomplished chef, journalist and dedicated fantasy sports player. When Matt's not in the kitchen, he's preparing the recipe for fantasy sports success. He is...The Fantasy Chef.
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