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Player Trends Report - Receivers - Week 9
Tim Van Prooyen
October 28, 2008
Quarterbacks  |  Running Backs  |  Receivers
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RISING

Nate Washington, Steelers – With the news of Santonio Holmes drug situation, Washington became a very nice pick up last week for many owners.  While he didn’t have many catches, he was in fact limited to one, he turned that in to pay dirt.  The Steelers aren’t passing the ball as well as they have been expected to, but the top two receivers, now Hines Ward and Washington, are pretty much must starts week in and week out on potential alone.  If he’s still there and you’re hurting, Washington is a smart grab this week.

Andre Johnson, Texans – A number of top receivers have had rough days against Cincinnati this season, so Johnson’s huge day should go a long way in making a statement that he indeed is back to his top threat days.  He’s been a headache for much of the early part of the season, but has been solid for the past few weeks.  He’s a bit more mainstream than the receivers we usually list on here, but it is good to know he’s a safe start again.  With a quarterback who’s on a bit of a hot streak, he’s likely to have a nice run as you ready for the playoffs.

Dennis Northcutt, Jaguars – With the likelihood of Matt Jones being suspended added to the performance Northcutt had on Sunday point to good possibilities for at least the next few weeks for Dennis.  He was thrown to six times throughout the game and caught five of the passes…and that was with Jones having a very good day.  If he has to step into Jones’ slot, expect him to perform nicely, as he has a track record of doing.  He’ll be available on most waiver wires so you should have a chance to grab him.

Mark Bradley, Chiefs – Bradley isn’t going to set the world on fire with his numbers, but if his performance this week is any indication he could be in a fine situation going forward.  This is a hedge bet, be warned, but if Tyler Thigpen continues to play like he did this week and stays the starter for a while, something that very well could happen, there could be some value here, as quarterbacks are funny that way.  Thigpen obviously was comfortable tossing to Bradley, so the connection could have some legs going forward.  It will remain to be seen, but he’s worth a flier grab this week off the waiver wire.

Delanie Walker (TE), 49ers – With Vernon Davis in the doghouse, Walker picked up some action today, and he could be in line to finish out the season as the starter.  Grab him on the wire this week and watch closely to see what Singletary does with Davis.  With injuries biting every week, depth and sleepers are where the money is made in this part of the season, so be ready to pounce when one is available, and it would appear one is available right here.

Steve Heiden (TE), Browns – With the spoiled child Kellen Winslow sidelined Heiden has had a couple of very good weeks.  If he continues this production Winslow may find his playing cut back dramatically when and if he is able to return.  The team hasn’t lost in two weeks, and the change at tight end corresponds nicely, they may go with the ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ mentality and keep the status quo.

FALLING

Bryant Johnson, 49ers – So much was expected of Johnson when he left Arizona for San Fran, but it really never materialized.  He’s now lost his job to a rookie and will likely remain a bits and pieces option the remainder of the season.  He’s a fair option for release from you team should you still be holding on to him.

Matt Jones, Jaguars – This may confuse some who see his huge eight catch day and wonder why he’d be on the downward slide.  Well, he wouldn’t have been playing today had he not been on an appeal of his pending three game suspension.  The likelihood of his actually being suspended soon for at least three games is very good, meaning he would be out until at least week 13 or so.  In many leagues that is about the end of the regular season, so he is a very risky choice to help any fantasy teams the rest of the fantasy regular season, definitely earning him a slide.

Malcom Floyd, Chargers – Floyd saw a big decrease in action this week as Chris Chambers got back into the lineup.  This should be noted as the only receiving options of any value on the Chargers team are the tight end and top two receivers, of which he now is not included.  He should be let go for now unless you have the room to stash him, and picked up again only if and when Chambers or Vincent Jackson go down with injury.

Vernon Davis (TE), 49ers – He’s in the coach’s doghouse and good, and indications are present that could lead to his benching.  He’s already underperformed greatly this year and this could make him literally irrelevant.  The only way it would appear that this could end well is if he ended up with another team, but that won’t happen until the off season, meaning you should probably count your loses and try grabbing Delanie Walker as insurance.

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