One of the things I dislike about fantasy sports writers is that you’ll get an article that says “start this guy”, or “sit this guy”, and when the games are all said and done there’s no accountability. I go
into writing my articles knowing that I’m going to be right on some things, and some things won’t work out the way I had anticipated. That’s fantasy football. But what I will NOT do, is hide and simply move on to the next week without admitting where I was wrong (and maybe gloating a bit about when I was right). So, here it goes for the Thursday night game in which the Titans beat the Steelers:
I expected Roethlisberger to put up 300+ yards and surpass Terry Bradshaw as the all-time Steelers
leader in passing yards. I expected more than the lone TD pass to Mike Wallace for 82 yards, but if you started Big Ben, a 24-for-40 performance with 363 yards a TD and 1 INT isn’t too bad.
I didn’t think Matt Hasselbeck was a solid start for two reasons: a.) he shouldn’t be rostered in most leagues, and b.) he was playing against what I thought would be a decent, but not spectacular Pittsburgh defense. You could do better than starting Hasselbeck. If you did, you got a 25-for-44 performance, 290 yards, and a TD and 1 INT. Not too bad.
I expected about 20 touches from Rashard Mendenhall. He had seven. Six carries for 6 yards, and one catch for 11 yards before leaving the game with an Achilles injury. You can’t anticipate injury on a per-game basis, so who knows if the prediction was on track or not?
I expected this to be Isaac Redman’s “final week of major importance” in the Steeler offense. I did NOT expect him to catch four passes for 105 yards. I’d like to read an article that did. He had 72 yards receiving in all of 2010 and 78 yards in all of 2011. We’ll label this as a serious
I was wrong about Chris Johnson. I labeled him as a “sit”, but he could have been used as a decent flex play. Nineteen carries for 91 yards and four catches for 23 yards is a decent night. He still scored no touchdowns. His longest run of the night still wasn’t longer than Ben Roethlisberger’s longest run (CJ-13 yds. vs Big Ben 14 yds.) but it’ll do.
Mike Wallace pretty much had the stat-line I expected from him. Although he only caught two passes on 4 targets, a 94 yards receiving night with one 82-yard TD catch is what you’d expect from a WR1.
Antonio Brown only caught 4 of his 10 targets for a measly 20 yards. In fact, he only “caught” three of the passes. One of the four he got credit for actually hit the ground, and wasn’t reviewed. If you started Brown–sorry.
Emmanuel Sanders had four catches for 43 yards on 6 targets.
Then there’s Kenny Britt. I expected him to have his first “complete game” of the season–putting it all together for four quarters. While I was right that he’d be covered by Ike Taylor, I was wrong about Britt. He put up good numbers (4 catches, 62 yards, 1 TD) but had 11 targets and dropped a ton of passes. He could have had a breakout game, but failed miserably. I’d take the stats from a fantasy perspective, but his game was disappointing.
I stated that if you had to choose between Nate Washington and Kendall Wright, that the rookie was the choice. The stats back that up: Washington 3/57/0 vs Wright 6/71/0.
Heath Miller had a Heath Miller night. Six catches for 67 yards on 9 targets. No touchdown this week though.
Jared Cook was only targeted four times all game, and caught all four for 54 yards. No touchdown either.
I don’t predict the kickers on a game-by-game basis, because it’s a crap-shoot. Shaun Suisham had a very good game, but was asked to kick a field goal out of his range. He finished 3-for-4 in field goals with a long of 52 yards, and was 2/2 for extra points.
Rob Bironas was a perfect 4-for-4 with a long of 47 yards and was 2/2 for extra points.
The Steelers defense is in trouble. It plays very poorly on the road, and has multiple injury problems. The days of penciling the Steelers DST in your lineup on an every week basis is over. Only start this squad at home, and only against “very plus” match-ups.
The Titans defense is still not desirable in fantasy football.
GAME RECAP: The Titans did more to win the game than the Steelers
did. The Titans aren’t as bad as many would think, but the Steelers are MUCH WORSE than their overall perception. It’ll be a long year for the Steeler Nation. Next up is a road trip against a division rival.
-Ryan Dickey (@ffbninja)