Welcome to the 2016 Fantasy Alarm Fantasy Football Game Recaps! Nobody watches more NFL football than yours truly mostly because it is impossible to do so. Each week I’ll open my notepad to all our Fantasy Alarm readers so that you guys can go beyond the boxscore to get the information you need to win your league.

Last week was a disaster in which everything seemed to just go wrong. But when you have done this for as long as I have (27 years), you learn how to embrace the chaos. This week I was able to identify situations that were ripe for fantasy letdowns such as Ty Montgomery and the injury to Spencer Ware.  I was also able to identify players like Donte Moncrief and Mohamed Sanu who were +EV options for us this week and came through in spades.

This week also featured an absolute ton of missed fantasy opportunities across the board. So, before you judge the fantasy failures this week let’s take a spin around the league and see which players had big plays called back and which just never got going.


Here are the Week 8 Fantasy Football Game Recaps:

27 – Washington Redskins at Cincinnati Bengals (London) – 27

Fantasy Player of Game: Tyler Eifert, TE, Begals – 9-102-1 receiving

Fantasy Disappointment: DeSean Jackson, WR, Redskins – 3-48 receiving

The last time the NFL had two ties in one season was back in 1997 and ironically, those occurred on back to back weeks too.

Redskins CB Josh Normal went ballistic on the referees after the game and rightfully so Norman was flagged four times for illegal use of hands most of which were completely unfounded. The Redskins as a team were penalized 15 times for 106 yards. The Bengals were penalized seven times for 85 yards in the game. Fans do not pay to watch referees throw flags and the modern day NFL had better start understanding that before they further ruin their product.

Dustin Hopkins had a chance to win the game in overtimes but missed a 34-yard field goal attempt with two minutes remaining. What’s worse is that Hopkins would have made his first attempt at the kick but the Bengals called a last second timeout just before he kicked it through.

Jordan Reed was active and played well in this game but Vernon Davis was also mixed in considerably today and hauled in 5-93 receiving. I don’t anticipate this continuing but monitor Davis’ usage as the team stays prepared in case Reed is knocked out again.

Jeremy Hill had a real slow start to this game and once again wound up missing drives due to injuries. He did wind up putting together 20-76-1 on the day which is a good way to go into the bye week where he will hopefully get healthy.

Tyler Eifert is 100% back and will be a red zone weapon for the Bengals the rest of the way. He’s not an automatic start by any means though so be sure to consider your scoring format before either picking him up or putting Eifert into your lineup.

Bengals kicker Mike Nugent is in a bad way right now. A week after missing two field goal attempts, he misses another FG try as well as an extra point that would have allowed the Bengals to win the game outright in regulation.

30 – Kansas City Chiefs at Indianapolis Colts – 14

Fantasy Player of Game: Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs – 7-101-1

Fantasy Disappointment: Spencer Ware, RB, Chiefs – 7-19 rushing

The NFL concussion protocol is a joke. On the first drive of this game Alex Smith was hit flush in the head and had his neck snap back to the ground. He was removed from game but somehow allowed to come back in after a couple series. Later, he got his head driven into the ground causing what was then deemed to be a concussion. If it’s player safety that is important, Smith would have never been allowed back in this game.

As I predicted all week, Chiefs RB Spencer Ware was knocked out of this game with an injury (concussion). The reason I knew that this was going to happen is because it happens every single year. Players who are backups themselves go down with injuries leaving the third guy to come in and scoop up all of the fantasy points. I was so sure of this happening today that I started Charcandrick West in multiple leagues.

Speaking of West, he had a 34 yard run called back for an illegal block on the Chiefs. He also had a screen pass that was whistled dead and thus didn’t count.

It wound up not mattering much but Chiefs kicker Cairo Santos missed an easy 28 yard field goal attempt late in the first half.

A dimension of Andrew Luck’s game that doesn’t get enough consideration from fantasy owners is his ability to run. Luck led the Colts in rushing today picking up 60 yards on nine carries. He’s no Cam Newton or Colin Kaepernick but just the ability to make first downs with his legs allows him more opportunities to create points for fantasy owners.

Donte Moncrief was back for the Colts today and immediately led the team in targets, receptions and yardage today. Moncrief is Andrew Luck’s favorite receiver and he has seven touchdowns in his last 10 games with Andrew Luck.

Moncrief’s day should have been even better as he hauled in a 46 yard touchdown pass late in the fourth quarter. But a holding penalty on the Colts nullified the score and killed fantasy owners everywhere.

T.Y. Hilton will still be very effective with Moncrief back, but he won’t be as heavily targeted as he was while Moncrief was out. Hilton only caught one pass in this game and that was late 20 yard grab after the game was in hand. Hilton did have a 45 yard reception called back due to a holding penalty.

Colts CB Vontae Davis left the game with a concussion late in the first half.

30 – Oakland Raiders at Tampa Bay Buccaneers– 24 (OT)

Fantasy Player of Game: Derek Carr, QB, Raiders – 513 yards, 4 TD’s passing

Fantasy Disappointment: Mike Evans, WR, Buccaneers – 4-50 receiving

Derek Carr’s 513 yards are tied for the 9th most all time for QB passing in a single game.

Another sloppy game full of penalties but when you look around the league and see that this is the new NFL, it is hard to blame the Raiders. The Raiders were penalized 23 times which is the most in a single game ever for 200 yards lost.

Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski missed two field goals (50, 52) that would have won the game at the end of regulation then again in overtime. The once great big legged kicker has begun to show signs of wearing down now in his 17th NFL season.

CB Sean Smith was knocked out of this game due to a left shoulder injury. He did not return and will be reevaluated on Monday.

For all of the praise I and others have given Mike Evans this season, he is not playing great football. There is not receivers in the NFL who drop more passes on a weekly basis than Evans. He had at least four legitimate drops this afternoon.

Get ready to pounce on RB Peyton Barber this week on waivers despite playing a limited role in this game. Jacquizz Rodgers was removed from the game late due to an arm injury and immediately ruled out which is never a good sign. If Rodgers misses time it will be all Barber for the Bucs who play on Thursday night this week against the Falcons.

20 – Seattle Seahawks at New Orleans Saints – 25

Fantasy Player of Game: Tim Hightower, RB, Saints – 26-102 rushing

Fantasy Disappointment: Mark Ingram, RB, Saints – 3-5 rushing

If Russell Wilson cannot get on track against the Saints, he is doomed. I’ve counted Wilson out numerous times throughout his career and he has always proved me wrong. But this time I have a strong feeling that he is really down for the count.

So much for Jimmy Graham’s revenge game. This was Graham’s first game back in New Orleans since being traded away before the 2015 season. I felt as though Graham was going to dominate this matchup yet he only gets three catches on five targets for the game. #Wrong

The Seahawks biggest play of the game on offense didn’t involve Russell Wilson at all. It was a swing pass to WR Tanner McEvoy who hurled a 43 yard pass down to RB C.J. Prosise who narrowly missed getting into the endzone on the play.

Mark Ingram was benched after he lost a fumble on the Saints first drive of the game. It was the second week in a row that Ingram lost a fumble and evidently head coach Sean Payton felt that he was a liability. Tim Hightower took over lead back duties and rushed for over 100 yards on the day. I’m sure that Ingram will be back to his customary starting role next week but it will come with a very short leash.

I’m sure Hightower will be a popular waiver wire target this week but I’d be very cautious in my bidding if I were you. He is simply not a guy that you can immediately plug in and start and is mostly useful as a handcuff to Mark Ingram or a wait and see bench player.

Drew Brees has thrown as least one touchdown pass in an NFL record 58 consecutive games.

13 – Detroit Lions at Houston Texans – 20

Fantasy Player of Game: Theo Riddick, RB, Lions – 133 total yards, 1 TD

Fantasy Disappointment: Marvin Jones, WR, Lions – 3-33 receiving

The Lions are quite possibly the most up and down team in the NFL. They simply cannot run the football and that creates a big problem in matchups against teams like the Texans who cannot stop the run. You need to be multi-dimensional on offense if you want to win in the modern day NFL.

I don’t trust Eric Ebron whatsoever. He is constantly injured and drops way too many passes to be a consistent fantasy producer.

Lions kicker Matt Prater missed a 48 yard field goal early on in this game and was 2-3 overall today on field goal tries.

The Texans are now a perfect 5-0 at home this season. On the flip side they have failed to win a single game on the road. The Texans are off next week but have the easiest schedule for fantasy considerations over their next six games after that.

There was supposed to be a timeshare at RB for the Texans today with Lamar Miller banged up but that never materialized. Alfred Blue left this game early with an injury to his ribs and sat out most of the second half.

The Texans also lost WR’s Jaelen Strong to an ankle injury and Will Fuller with a leg injury. Fuller had a terrible dropped pass early on in this game and just isn’t living up to the hype surrounding his first two games this season.

31 – New York Jets at Cleveland Browns – 28

Fantasy Player of Game: Matt Forte, RB, Jets – 98 total yards, 2 TD’s

Fantasy Disappointment: Gary Barnidge, TE, Browns – 3-42 receiving

The Jets had every opportunity to replace Ryan Fitzpatrick today and did not take it. He was absolutely brutal in the first half and then got hit in the head on a run that resulted in the referees ordering him to the sideline for concussion testing. Bryce Petty came in but did not attempt a pass. It doesn’t appear as though the Jets have any intentions of replacing Fitzpatrick anytime soon.

Brandon Marshall had just one target in the first half but it was a doozy. He dropped a long pass while wide open on what could have potentially went for a score. Consider his final line of 4-68 a good thing considering how dreadful this one started for him.

Don’t be fooled by Jets WR Robby Anderson and his impressive snap totals. He just isn’t really involved in the Jets offense despite being on the field an awful lot.

As if things weren’t bad enough for the Browns these days, their fans evidently don’t know how to spell either. (See pic)

Terrelle Pryor caught all six of his receptions in the first half of this game. He totaled 101 first half yards but was oddly silent after halftime.

Despite his two touchdown performance here today, there is absolutely no value to Andrew Hawkins in fantasy football.  

41 – New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills – 25

Fantasy Player of Game: Tom Brady, QB, Patriots – 315 yards, 4 TD’s passing

Fantasy Disappointment: James White, RB, Patriots – 29 total yards

Rob Gronkowski’s 53 yard touchdown reception was the 69th of his career and sets a new Patriots team record.

Julian Edelman had a 48 yard catch in which he could have had a touchdown if reviewed. But the play was nullified due to an illegal man downfield penalty on the Patriots. On the very next play Chris Hogan caught his 53 yard touchdown.

Any momentum that the Bills had going into the half was thwarted when Danny Amendola returned the second half kickoff 73 yards to set up an immediate score which pretty much put this game away.

Patriots FS Devin McCourty had an interception return for a touchdown nullified due to a pass interference penalty.

Somebody threw a dildo onto the field which appeared to glance off of former Bills WR Chris Hogan. The plastic pleasure device was on the field for several minutes before some poor sap had to go and clean it up.

The Bills lost LB Lorenzo Alexander to a hamstring injury in the second quarter of this game. They also lost WR Brandon Tate to a concussion and TE Charles Clay to a shoulder injury.

Bills kicker Dan Carpenter missed a 49 yard field goal attempt in this game.

20 – Arizona Cardinals at Carolina Panthers – 30

Fantasy Player of Game: Carson Palmer, QB, Cardinals – 363 yards, 3 TD’s passing

Fantasy Disappointment: Greg Olsen, TE, Panthers – 1-11 receiving

The Cardinals were down 24-0 with under a minute remaining in the first half. This team has continuously stumbled out of the gate and that is a direct reflection on the coaching staff. Bruce Arians was once the toast of the town but has really hit a bump in the road here this season. His true coaching prowess will be shown in how he gets this team back in its rails.

I knew going into this game that the Larry Fitzgerald/Robert McClain matchup would be a fruitful one for the Cardinals today. It worked out to the tune of 10-74 yards but really could have been a lot more. Carson Palmer has done a terrible job this season and identifying where his mismatches are and thus the Cardinals aren’t creating many big plays.

I will bid exactly $0 on J.J. Nelson on waivers this week. Yes, he had a terrific outing today but we are talking about the fifth option on a team that really is struggling on offense this season. Don’t be one of those people that feels they have to rush out and bid on the random player who scored two TD’s the previous week.

Cornerback Tyrann Mathieu was forced out of this game with a shoulder injury. The Cardinals also lost LT Jared Valdheer who suffered an arm injury and did not return.

Cam Newton came out in postgame news conference and said that he plans on talking directly to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell about hits he’s been taking. Newton took several shots today one of which was a late dive at his knees by Calais Campbell. Considering Cam has the most roughing the passer penalties called in his favor since he came into the league in 2011 (22), I doubt he will have much of a case.

Carolina lost their starting center Ryan Kalil to a right shoulder injury late in this ballgame and he did not return. The Panthers cannot afford to lose Kalil or any offensive linemen for that matter as they are incredibly thin at the position.

The Panthers also lost rookie LB Shaq Thompson with a knee injury late in the game. He will be reevaluated on Monday and his status will be determined during the week.

19 – San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos – 27

Fantasy Player of Game: Melvin Gordon, RB, Chargers – 155 total yards

Fantasy Disappointment: Tyrell Williams, WR, Chargers – 1-4 receiving

The Chargers always play the Broncos tough but couldn’t steal this victory away this time around. The Broncos defense hit Philip Rivers an amazing 17 times including four sacks today. Two of Rivers interceptions came on tipped passes including Bradley Roby’s 49 yard return for a touchdown. Just a few less mistakes and the Chargers could have had this game.

Chargers safety Dwight Lowery had what in my opinion is the new snapshot of the current day NFL when he pulled up instead of trying to make a play on an Emmanuel Sanders reception late in the first half. The video clearly shows that Lowery had second thoughts about making a play that might result in a penalty or fine since Sanders head was barreling down on him. So, he simply stopped and let him make the play. This is going to become an epidemic eventually as the NFL punishes every single hit to an opponent’s head regardless of intent.

Tyrell Williams left this game with a left knee injury in the second quarter. He did return later on but played sparingly evidently because of the injury.

A very scary moment in this game was when Broncos LB Von Miller drove Chargers RB Melvin Gordon out of bounds in the second quarter. Miller chucked Gordon directly into Broncos defensive coordinator Wade Phillip, knocking the 69 year old veteran coach on his back. Phillips had to be carted off and taken to the hospital where he was treated for injuries to his head, neck, back and leg. The latest word on Wade is that he is doing well and will likely be out of the hospital tonight and back at work on Monday.

Devontae Booker was the sleeper darling of the fantasy world this week but his day was nearly over quick. Booker went down with a shoulder injury on the Broncos first drive and missed the next few series as Kapri Bibbs and Juwan Thompson filled in. Booker luckily returned to put up a productive yet uneven performance today.

Booker had a second touchdown run directly in front of him when he attempted to stick out the football causing him to lose control and fumble the ball away.

32 – Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons - 33

Fantasy Player of Game: Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers – 246 yards, 4 TD’s passing

Fantasy Disappointment: Julio Jones, WR, Falcons – 3-29 receiving

Everybody’s hero Ty Montgomery was inactive today due to what was referred to as an “illness” all week long. It turns out that Montgomery had blood in his urine due to a kidney injury sustained in week seven against Chicago. These are the things that happen when you have a wide receiver play running back. It’s not natural to have someone that’s not built for that kind of pounding to be thrown into it. I doubt we see much of Montgomery at the RB position the rest of the season.

That being said, Aaron Rodgers should not be the leading rusher for the Packers the way that he was this week. They have to start trusting the likes of Knile Davis and Don Jackson if they want to balance out this offense.

Jordy Nelson once again had a first quarter touchdown. Five of his six touchdowns this season have come in the first quarter of the game.

Julio Jones is a fantasy beast that is for sure but his recent run of disappearing in games is not that of a winning player. Jones has been a losing proposition having scored under 6 fantasy points in three of his last six games. I hope that most of you realize that a player can score 100 points for you in a week but that it doesn’t help you in any of those other weeks. We need to see more consistency out of Julio here if he is to lead anybody to a championship this year.

Terron Ward looked good in his role with the Falcons this week. He flashed great moves in a 26 yard run that almost got him in the endzone. Ward would be the handcuff to Freeman should Tevin Coleman miss an extended amount of time.

The Falcons lost TE Jacob Tamme to a shoulder injury on their first possession of the game. He did not return and will be reevaluated on Monday.

23 – Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys – 29

Fantasy Player of Game: Dez Bryant, WR, Cowboys – 4-113-1 receiving

Fantasy Disappointment: Ryan Mathews, RB, Cowboys – 4-10-1 rushing

The Eagles are fading real fast as that 3-0 start feels like an eternity ago at this point. Doug Pederson simply is overmatched as head coach this season.

Nothing demonstrates how poorly structured the Eagles are as how they utilize their running backs. There is absolutely no symmetry or pattern to how they are used. Maybe this would work if you can a group of world beaters but that is just not the case. The lack of touches by Ryan Mathews is a disgrace to the team.

Like it or not Dorial Green-Beckham is a thing here in Philadelphia this year. He’s worth having on your roster in case you need a WR to spot start during some of these bye weeks.

The Eagles lost LG Allen Barbre to a hamstring injury in the first half of tonight’s game and he did not return.

This win solidifies Dak Prescott as the Cowboys starting QB even when Tony Romo is 100%. I thought going into this game that if Dak played poorly and turned the ball over that it would open the door for Tony Romo to assume the starting job as early as next week. Dak did struggle early and turned the ball over but he rebounded well and led his team back to a huge victory.

Dez Bryant returned to action tonight and immediately caught fire with Dak racking up 4-113-1 on the day. Dez spoke after the game that he has full confidence in Dak and that he is excited to have him as the starter if that is the case.

The Cowboys lost both safety Barry Church (arm) and cornerback Morris Claiborne (groin) during tonight’s game. They were each ruled out immediately after exiting the game and will be reevaluated on Monday.