- Giants DL Justin
Tuck left the game briefly in the second quarter, appearing
to aggravate his surgically-repaired left shoulder. He would
return and lead the DL production with 8 tackles (3 solo), including
2 for losses. Tuck is racking up tackles, but is yet to get
to the QB for a sack. The Giants started in their base defense
with Tuck at LDE and Osi
Umenyiora at RDE, but Umenyiora appears to continue to be
limited by various nagging pains. His left knee, which he blew
to end his 2008 season, was aggravated in Week 1 and his right
knee began bothering him before Week 2. He has also had pain
resurface from a torn hip flexor from 2006. He posted a goose
egg and looks like a risky play any given week. First-round
Pierre-Paul made his first significant contribution of the
season when he stopped Tennessee RB Chris Johnson for a loss
on a third-down run in the second quarter. It was his only tackle
of the game. Mathias
Kiwanuka rotated in at end and worked at LB in their “Big
Base”. He had his team-leading fourth sack of the season among
his 4 tackles (3 solo).
- Philadelphia rookie DE Brandon
Graham started back at LDE this week, but continues to work
inside, as well, and logged just 1 QB hit in the box score.
Tapp was active for the first time this season and took
advantage of his situational role in getting his first sack
as an Eagle and tallying another TFL. RDE Trent
Cole led the team with 8 solo tackles, including 2 sacks.
Third DE Juqua
Parker got his team-leading fourth sack of the season.
- A week after a three-sack performance, Houston DE Mario
Williams put up a goose egg. Fantasy owners shouldn’t be
too concerned, he faced Dallas LT Doug Free, who has not allowed
a sack this season and is quickly becoming recognized as one
of the top pass-defending tackles in the league. Based on Williams’
first two games, more quality production will be on the way.
The takeaway is to avoid the match-up with your ends against
- It was the first career pick for Tennessee DT Sen'Derrick
Marks on the first drive when Giants WR Hakeem
Nicks let a pass go through his hands and it bounced off
the helmet of CB Cortland Finnegan and right back to Marks.
Hayes returned from injury, but did not start or appear
in the box score. Jason Babin remained the starter at LDE, Hayes’
expected position, and Dave
Ball started at RDE with Jacob
Ford out nursing a dinged up knee and ankle. Babin remained
the most productive end, posting 3 tackles (1 solo) and a QB
hit. Ball had his second sack of the season. Rookie Derrick
Morgan remained in a situation pass rush role and posted
just 1 solo tackle.
- Cincinnati DE Antwan
Odom was inactive with a left wrist sprain, giving Michael
Johnson his first career start. Johnson posted 4 tackles
(3 solo). Odom has been a disappointment this season, battling
injuries and substance-abuse allegations, and isn’t worth rostering
in shallow leagues. I wouldn’t run out and add Johnson in most
redraft format yet, but the passing of the torch is in progress.
- Seattle DE Chris
Clemons got 4 hits on San Diego QB Phillip Rivers and sacked
him twice among his 5 tackles (3 solo). I was high on him in
the preseason and it took him a couple weeks to get going, but
this was more of what I expected from the only real pass rushing
threat on the team. Clearly he benefit from Rivers’ 53 pass
attempts, and won’t have that many opportunities most weeks,
but he is viable in sack-heavy leagues.
- Indianapolis first-round pick DE Jerry
Hughes was active for the first time on Sunday, but was
limited to special teams.
- Chicago DT Tommie
Harris was a healthy scratch on Monday night and reportedly
arguing with agent Drew Rosenhaus about the situation prior
to the game. He has been outplayed by former sixth-round pick
Toeaina this year and the move was likely punitive and/or
motivational for Harris. Harris could resurface soon, but he
has no place on a roster until he’s not just active on game
days, but contributing again.
- Top waiver wire recommendations of
the week: Chris
Clemons worth considering in sack-heavy leagues where you
have an injury or bye week issue. I wouldn’t drop Osi Umenyiora
if I didn’t have to, but he isn’t an every-game starter in shallow
leagues anymore, so think about bolstering the position if you’re
counting on him. Two other refreshers from last week, I’m all
in on Juqua
Parker in sack-heavy leagues and done with Derrick
Harvey in all formats. Make sure Michael Johnson is not
out there in dynasty leagues if you have room, though he’s not
a fantasy starter in most yet.
- Those waiting for productive Cleveland ILB D’Qwell Jackson
to return from his partially torn pec and boost their LB corps
will have to look elsewhere as he was placed on the IR. Either
the medical staff in Cleveland needs some changes or Jackson
experienced a major setback, because the team never bothered
putting him on the PUP in expecting him to return in less than
six week and there were reports as recent as last week that
he was almost ready to return to practice. Bump up Eric
Barton, who is now locked in as the WILB for the rest of
- The return of OLB Shawne
Merriman didn’t last long. He missed the season opener with
tendinitis in his Achilles after holding out. His season started
in Week 2 with 3 tackles, but he was out in the first quarter
in Week 3 on Sunday after hurting his calf. His back up, Larry
English was already inactive with a left foot injury he
aggravated at practice last week. Their depth outside was further
thinned by the absence of Jyles
Tucker, whose been away from the team for a week due to
personal issue. Tucker is back this week and Merriman expects
to play this week, but the prognosis for English is now that
he is out indefinitely as he’s undergoing surgery on the foot.
With all three out of commission on Sunday, former UDFA Antwan
Applewhite stepped in and got his first solo sack of his career.
San Diego is plug-and-play at OLB, so Applewhite is a name for
deep leagues that score sacks highly with Merriman hurting and
English out. Tucker, another former UDFA, took advantage of
a similar situation a couple years ago and racked up 5.5 sacks.
The situation was no better inside. Stephen
Cooper was inactive for the second straight game with a
knee injury. In his place, Brandon
Siler has been excellent at SILB. Last week Siler had 6
solo tackles and broke up 2 passes, picking one off, despite
pass coverage being his liability. On Sunday Siler had his first
sack of the season for a safety when he went untouched through
the Seahawks OLine deep in Seattle territory. He finished with
5 solo tackles, including 3 for a loss. Siler is earning more
snaps in the rotation when Cooper returns, which may come at
the expense of WILB Kevin
- More time in their “Big Base” against Tennessee meant less
production for Giants MLB Jonathan
Goff and WLB Michael
Boley. A week after posting 9 and 16 tackles respectively,
Goff had 4 (2 solo) and Boley had 1 solo. DC Perry Fewell appears
adamant about his catering his scheme for the opponent, instead
of making offenses adjust to the strengths of his defense, so
Goff and Boley are only worth playing against pass-heavy offenses
and the Giants have one on the schedule this week with Chicago
coming to town.
- Philadelphia MLB Stewart
Bradley returned to action after sustaining a concussion
in Week 1. His return left Omar
Gaither a healthy scratch. Bradley had 4 solo tackles.
- Detroit MLB DeAndre
Levy was active for the first time this season after dealing
with a groin injury and promptly proceeded to sprain his right
ankle in the game. He posted just 2 solo tackles. His status
this week in again in question. Landon
Johnson, who was also inactive on Sunday with a neck injury,
is his back-up. The team was also without WLB Zack
Follett, who was inactive with a concussion. Ashlee
Palmer replaced Follett and had 6 solo tackles. He could
be a sleeper again this week if all three are out. The Lions
should spend a lot of time in nickel and dime against Green
- With double-digit tackles in his first two games and 9 (5
solo) on Sunday, Carolina SLB James
Anderson continues his breakout season. He is fifth in the
league in tackles, ahead of annual top-five producer WLB Jon
Beason and MLB Dan
Connor. With Connor coming off in pass packages, it looks
like he’ll be the most inconsistent producer.
- A hamstring injury in the second half ended the day of Seattle
Herring replaced him as top back-up Leroy
Hill remains out indefinitely with an Achilles’ injury.
Curry tweeted after the game that it was just cramps, but the
team is awaiting results of a MRI. There were also reports that
Hill potentially faces a new 2- to 3-game suspension from the
league for violating the personal conduct policy after a couple
of arrests in the offseason for marijuana and an incident with
his girlfriend. This would be on top of the one-game suspension
he already served in the season opener for violating the league’s
substance abuse policy. WLB David
Hawthorne finally had the game fantasy owners were waiting
for from the 2009 fantasy star. He posted 9 tackles (6 solo)
and forced a fumble.
- In his return to South Beach, Jets OLB Jason
Taylor celebrated a sack for the second consecutive game
much to the chagrin of fans that supported him for 12 seasons.
Pace, who Taylor replaced in the starting lineup, could
return to practice this week from a broken foot, but with Buffalo
on the schedule this week and Taylor playing well, they’ll likely
opt to sit him out one more week.
- With Indianapolis WLB Clint
Sessions out for the second straight week with a hamstring
injury, rookie seventh-round pick Kavell
Conner got his second straight start, however Conner broke
his left foot in the game. Cody
Glenn replaced him and will start this week if Sessions
still isn’t ready.
- Top waiver wire recommendations of
the week: If someone was disillusioned by David Hawthorne’s
start to the season and he’s out there in decent-sized leagues,
grab him up. I like Michael
Boley as a spot start in deeper leagues against Chicago’s
pass-heavy offense. Same for Ashlee Palmer if Zack Follett is
out again. If anyone is overlooking him in shallow redraft leagues,
Brooking is on pace for his highest tackle total since 2006
and is still a playmaker at 34. Get Brandon Siler in dynasty
leagues with room on your roster and in deep, sack-heavy leagues,
see what shakes out at OLB in SD. A.J.
Hawk looks back in the picture in GB and motivated by his
Week 1 demotion, appealing in all formats. Eric Barton benefits
from the end to D’Qwell Jackson’s season in deep, tackle-heavy
redraft leagues, but he won’t give you anything else.
- St. Louis FS Oshiomogho
Atogwe missed the second half after aggravating a left thigh
injury. He had 4 solo tackles before he left and while he is
second on the team with 19 tackles (16 solo) through three games,
he hasn’t generated any big plays his real team and fantasy
teams expect out of him. Perhaps we’re seeing why no teams were
interested in giving him a big free agent deal after an offseason
filled with recovery from various major injuries. He had surgery
for both a dislocation and to repair a torn labrum in his right
shoulder and there was also confirmation of a hernia issue,
although whether or not it required surgery wasn’t. He’s still
getting back in playing shape and the lingering thigh problem
won’t help. I wouldn’t recommend dropping him, but he’s only
adding value in tackle-heavy leagues right now and any continued
degradation in health will make him expendable in shallow redraft
- Although he had just 6 solo tackles this week, Washington
Landry still leads the league in tackles.
- Seattle CB Marcus
Trufant was sidelined early in the third quarter with a
left ankle sprain. He was replaced by rookie Walter
Thurmond who got a baptism by fire as San Diego QB Phillip
Rivers tore up the Seahawks secondary with 455 passing yards.
Somehow they managed to bend as far as possible, but not break,
helped by their crowd disorienting the San Diego offense at
key times and a few big plays from rookie FS Earl
Thomas. He had the first two picks of his NFL career, the
second deep in Seattle territory, sealing the victory over San
Diego with seconds left in the game. Trufant is questionable
this week and Thurmond would get the start if he’s out.
- Former UDFA CB Kyle Arrington got his first career start
for New England, as starting RCB Darius
Butler was benched after a rough showing against the Jets
in the previous game. Buffalo didn’t exploit the opportunity
as much as they should have, so he finished with just 3 tackles
(2 solo), although I though he also broke up a potential TD
pass to Buffalo WR Lee Evans in the end zone in the second quarter,
but he wasn’t credited with a pass defensed by the official
scorer (yet). On the other side, rookie Devin
McCourty started his third straight game and had 5 solo
tackles. The Patriots are very suspect at the corners and should
be tested there often. James
Sanders remained the starter at one safety spot over Brandon
Meriweather and S Patrick
Chung remained the most productive member of their secondary,
posting 7 solo tackles and grabbing his first pick of the year
in the end zone to prevent a scoring drive on the first play
of the fourth quarter.
- The homecoming for Tennessee CB Jason
McCourty, a NY native and Rutgers product, at New Meadowlands
Stadium, was off to a good start when he got his first career
interception on a diving grab in the end zone in the first quarter.
However, it ended badly when he broke his right forearm on a
tackle in the second quarter of the win over the Giants. He
was replaced by rookie Alterraun
Verner, who should be tested often the next 3-6 weeks while
McCourty is out.
- As expected, Revis Island was closed on Sunday night as Jets
Revis was inactive with a pulled left hamstring. With a
poor Buffalo passing game up next, the speculation is that Revis
will be held out this week, as well, to ensure the injury is
fully healed. Rookie Kyle
Wilson, who replaced Revis as a starter, was tested often
and finished tied for the team lead in tackles with 7 (5 solo).
With Wilson in the starting lineup, Drew
Coleman moved in to the nickel corner role and sealed the
victory at Miami with a pick in the end zone with seconds left.
It was his first pick since 2007 and just the second of his
- With Jacksonville SS Anthony
Smith inactive with a foot injury, 2009 seventh-round pick
Greene got his second career start. His encore to his huge
game last week was posting just 2 solo tackles. FS Sean
Considine continues to be extremely productive. He led the
team in the game with 7 solo tackles, including his first sack
of the season, and leads the team in tackles on the season with
24 (21 solo). CB David
Jones continues to start over Derek
Cox opposite Rashean
Mathis, but Cox was active on Sunday.
- Green Bay FS Nick
Collins left the game with a knee strain in the first quarter,
allowing sub Derrick
Martin to stop a promising Chicago drive with a pick in
the end zone, his first interception since 2007. Collins would
return to finish the game, but might have been better of missing
the rest, as an alleged altercation with a fan resulted in him
throwing something, reportedly a tape roll, in the stands. This
probably will just be a slap on the hand from the league.
- Atlanta SS Erik
Coleman missed his second straight game with a knee injury.
Moore continues to start in his place.
- With Denver starting CB Andre Goodman sidelined by a thigh
injury, rookie CB Perrish
Cox was beaten every which way by Indianapolis WR Austin
Collie. Cox also muffed a punt return deep in Denver territory
that led to a field goal.
- Tampa Bay FS Tanard
Jackson has been suspended indefinitely for violating the
league’s substance abuse policy. He’s gone for at least all
of this season. Sabby
Piscitelli moves back to the starting lineup and SS Sean
Jones, who is off to a slow start, has more job security.
- Top waiver recommendations of the
week: Following up last week’s recommendation with another
plug for Jason
Allen, as I still notice him not owned in many shallow to
medium-sized leagues. Also, the ageless Lawyer
Milloy and a healthy Kelvin
Hayden have picked up their production the last two weeks.