Fantasy Football: Darrius Heyward-Bey, LeGarrette Blount
October 11, 2012 @ 17:24:19 PDT
Many times fantasy football owners tend to forget about injured players making a return. Tim Heaney and Nicholas Minnix reminded you to start making plans for a notable wide receiver and running back who could easily contribute to your squad in the second half of the season.
Along the same vein, Darrius Heyward-Bey (concussion, neck strain) will return in Week 6 to face the Atlanta Falcons after suffering a serious injury during a collision in the end zone against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 3. He has practiced in full so far this week and appears to be at 100 percent health.
I know Carson Palmer isn't setting the world on fire with his play thus far, but the Silver and Black are coming off a bye week in which they most likely worked on ways to make Palmer more comfortable in Greg Knapp's system.
Against the Falcons, expect the Raiders to be playing catch up, and Heyward-Bey will be relied on often. In the first three games of the season, DHB was targeted at least five times, including an eight-look Week 2. He's owned in only 50 percent of Yahoo! Leagues, so if he's out there, don't let him continue to collect dust on the wire.
In Week 7, you'll probably be scrambling for some wideouts to start with six teams on bye. Heyward-Bey has an excellent matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars. After that, he'll face the Kansas City Chiefs, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Baltimore Ravens and New Orleans Saints - all teams that can be exploited through the air.
Mr. Minnix warned fantasy gamers several weeks ago to keep tabs on LeGarrette Blount. The Bucs confidently believe some sort of timeshare between Doug Martin and Blount will wear opposing fronts down. The contrast in both of these rushers' styles is vast.
Tampa Bay said they would make it a point to get Blount more involved. They did: He received a season-high six carries for 17 yards and a touchdown against the Redskins in Week 4. Although it's just a smidge more work than his three-carry Week 1 and four-tote Week 3, it's progress.
The Bucs' Week 6 matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs is enticing. Martin should be able to soften them up enough for Blount's bruising body to take a toll. Don't be surprised to see Blount score another cheap TD.
I don't expect many of you to start Blount this week, but in preparation for those tricky Week 7 byes, it would probably be wise to own him if you need the help at running back. He's facing the New Orleans Saints, too, who haven't been able to stop much of anything this year.
About Keith Hernandez
Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program. Follow @keithdez27
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