Same drill as the primary receivers, except this is secondary receivers. Do keep in mind, the players considered for this change based on who plays and who doesn’t in the games (i.e., if Anquan Boldin isn’t playing, Steve Breaston is a secondary receiver rather than a tertiary one).

vs. No. 2 Wide Recivers
TEAM FP OVRL TEAM FP HOME TEAM FP RD
Panthers 3.33 Bills 1.48 49ers 1.88
Bucs 3.65 Panthers 2.45 Cardinals 1.88
Steelers 4.26 Ravens 2.85 Giants 3.20
Eagles 4.46 Bucs 2.93 Steelers 3.42
Colts 4.80 Bengals 3.25 Colts 3.80
Bills 5.03 Eagles 3.50 Panthers 4.22
Titans 5.24 Packers 4.82 Bucs 4.37
Redskins 5.58 Colts 5.30 Titans 5.08
Patriots 6.10 Titans 5.35 Redskins 5.12
Vikings 6.27 Steelers 5.53 Eagles 5.42
Bengals 6.46 Patriots 5.70 Saints 5.60
Giants 6.51 Texans 6.03 Jaguars 5.72
Texans 6.52 Redskins 6.28 Vikings 5.77
Bears 6.83 Vikings 6.77 Jets 5.78
Saints 6.88 Cowboys 7.25 Bears 5.90
49ers 7.57 Raiders 7.50 Broncos 6.13
Cardinals 7.57 Saints 7.51 Patriots 6.37
Raiders 7.59 Chiefs 7.88 Browns 6.55
Lions 7.87 Falcons 8.65 Lions 6.63
Ravens 7.95 Bears 8.68 Texans 6.85
Chiefs 7.96 Giants 8.72 Rams 7.03
Broncos 7.98 Dolphins 8.90 Bills 7.40
Packers 8.00 Broncos 8.91 Raiders 7.65
Cowboys 8.38 Lions 9.73 Chiefs 8.02
Rams 8.56 49ers 10.41 Bengals 8.06
Browns 9.32 Cardinals 10.41 Cowboys 9.50
Jaguars 9.47 Rams 10.85 Chargers 9.93
Jets 10.39 Seahawks 10.87 Seahawks 9.98
Seahawks 10.51 Browns 11.17 Packers 11.18
Chargers 10.61 Chargers 11.28 Falcons 13.27
Falcons 10.96 Jaguars 13.22 Ravens 15.60
Dolphins 13.29 Jets 13.47 Dolphins 16.22

Here are the defensive rankings against primary wide receivers. One note — these rankings do not include any rushing yards attained by receivers. They are minimal enough and tedious enough to enter that I’m simply considering them negligble. The rankings would be only minimally changed by adding them, if at all.

vs. No. 1 Wide Recivers
TEAM FP OVRL TEAM FP HOME TEAM FP RD
Titans 5.59 Eagles 2.38 Packers 2.82
Eagles 5.61 Ravens 4.05 49ers 4.03
Packers 6.13 Titans 5.07 Cardinals 4.03
Ravens 7.38 Dolphins 5.88 Jets 5.60
Jets 7.57 Colts 7.18 Steelers 5.62
Panthers 7.58 Chiefs 8.43 Panthers 5.93
49ers 8.16 Bills 8.45 Titans 6.38
Cardinals 8.16 Vikings 8.77 Browns 7.30
Jaguars 9.02 Jets 8.88 Rams 7.40
Steelers 9.46 Panthers 9.22 Raiders 7.72
Broncos 9.64 Falcons 9.38 Jaguars 7.95
Bengals 9.65 Texans 9.40 Seahawks 8.15
Seahawks 9.80 Broncos 9.43 Bengals 8.46
Raiders 9.91 Packers 9.45 Eagles 8.83
Rams 9.93 Chargers 9.62 Bucs 8.92
Vikings 10.11 Jaguars 10.08 Broncos 10.08
Bills 10.31 49ers 10.23 Lions 10.40
Falcons 10.37 Cardinals 10.23 Cowboys 10.47
Texans 11.08 Saints 10.34 Falcons 11.35
Dolphins 11.11 Patriots 10.45 Vikings 11.45
Lions 11.28 Seahawks 10.90 Bills 11.55
Browns 11.36 Bengals 12.03 Texans 12.20
Bucs 11.46 Bears 12.40 Ravens 12.38
Colts 11.97 Lions 12.60 Redskins 13.80
Chargers 12.43 Redskins 13.10 Patriots 13.92
Chiefs 12.48 Raiders 13.20 Dolphins 14.60
Patriots 12.53 Rams 13.73 Bears 15.16
Redskins 13.52 Bucs 14.00 Chiefs 15.18
Cowboys 13.57 Browns 14.07 Chargers 15.25
Saints 13.72 Giants 14.23 Giants 17.25
Bears 14.24 Steelers 15.23 Saints 20.48
Giants 15.44 Cowboys 16.67 Colts 21.55

Same deal as below, only this ranking reflects points scored by ALL secondary backs against a defense — not just one. So if we’re talking about the Cleveland Browns, Jamal Lewis counts as the primary back, while Jerome Harrison and Jason Wright both have their stats count as secondary backs. However, there is one caveat. The primary back each game is the one who gets the most carries. So for situations like Jacksonville, if Maurice Jones-Drew has more carries than Fred Taylor one week, he is the primary back. But if Taylor gets more carries the next week, he is the primary back. And so it goes…

vs. No. 2 Running Backs
TEAM FP OVRL TEAM FP HOME TEAM FP RD
Eagles 1.65 Giants 0.783333 Eagles 1.483
Giants 2.09 Eagles 1.816667 Redskins 2.8
Cowboys 3.025 Cowboys 2.35 Patriots 3.433
Cardinals 3.85 Falcons 2.9 Cowboys 3.7
Dolphins 4.54 Bucs 3.216667 Giants 4.05
Seahawks 4.65 Cardinals 3.216667 Cardinals 4.483
Bucs 4.76667 Dolphins 3.325 Seahawks 4.65
Patriots 4.9 Saints 4.3625 Ravens 4.675
Saints 4.975 Seahawks 4.65 Bears 5.325
Ravens 5.3 Chargers 5.05 Dolphins 5.35
Chargers 5.375 Jaguars 5.133333 Packers 5.383
Redskins 5.43 Bills 5.45 Chargers 5.7
Jaguars 5.50833 Vikings 5.466667 Jaguars 5.883
Bears 5.93333 Ravens 5.716667 Browns 5.95
Browns 6.1 Browns 6.2 Saints 6.2
Packers 6.25 Steelers 6.425 Bucs 6.317
Vikings 6.25 Titans 6.866667 Broncos 6.925
Falcons 6.5 Patriots 7.1 Vikings 7.033
Titans 7.52 Packers 7.116667 Colts 7.45
Steelers 7.81 Bears 7.15 Texans 8.25
Panthers 8.275 Bengals 7.65 Panthers 8.417
Bills 8.76 Panthers 8.133333 Titans 8.5
49ers 8.89167 Jets 8.7 Steelers 8.733
Bengals 9.06667 49ers 8.8 Chiefs 9.017
Lions 9.5 Redskins 9.375 49ers 9.075
Chiefs 9.8 Lions 10 Lions 9.167
Jets 9.99 Raiders 10.85 Rams 9.6
Raiders 10.43 Chiefs 10.975 Bengals 9.775
Broncos 11.525 Broncos 13.825 Falcons 10.1
Texans 11.8 Rams 16.9 Raiders 10.15
Rams 12.52 Texans 17.125 Bills 10.97
Colts 16.6833 Colts 21.3 Jets 11.93

OK, as explained in my previous post, this is a look at how defenses fare against specific positions. Fantasy points are based on the following system:Point Per Reception Leagues: 4 pts per passing TD, 6 pts per rushing and receiving TDs, 1 point per reception, .02 pts per passing yard, .05 pts per rushing/receiving yard, -1 for INTs. Here is a look at how defenses have done against primary running backs through Week 6.

vs. No. 1 Running Backs
TEAM FP OVRL TEAM FP HOME TEAM FP RD
Ravens 5.36 Bucs 3.316667 Cowboys 2.983
Panthers 5.76667 Panthers 4.166667 Dolphins 3.383
Dolphins 6.43 Ravens 4.783333 Ravens 6.225
Saints 7.48333 Bills 5.25 Packers 7.317
Bears 8 Saints 5.3375 Panthers 7.367
Vikings 8.65833 Vikings 5.65 Titans 7.55
Cowboys 8.725 Bears 6.65 Falcons 7.617
Giants 8.93 Rams 6.9 Steelers 8.633
Steelers 8.96 Giants 7.183333 Bears 8.675
Redskins 9.24 Eagles 7.866667 Redskins 9.083
Bills 9.3 Chargers 7.983333 Patriots 9.517
Bucs 9.3 Jets 8.733333 Chargers 10.78
Chargers 9.38333 Chiefs 9.05 Giants 11.55
Jets 10.3 Steelers 9.45 Jaguars 11.55
Packers 10.5917 Redskins 9.475 Bengals 11.6
Falcons 10.9 Lions 10.025 Vikings 11.67
Titans 10.94 Bengals 10.375 Saints 11.78
Bengals 11.1917 Seahawks 10.61667 Cardinals 11.78
Eagles 11.5667 Dolphins 11 Browns 11.83
Browns 11.66 Browns 11.55 Bills 12
Jaguars 12.2667 Texans 12.175 Jets 12.65
Cardinals 12.9083 49ers 12.9 49ers 13.6
Patriots 12.99 Jaguars 12.98333 Raiders 13.72
49ers 13.1333 Titans 13.2 Texans 14.88
Seahawks 13.16 Raiders 13.775 Eagles 15.27
Rams 13.35 Packers 13.86667 Bucs 15.28
Raiders 13.74 Cardinals 14.03333 Lions 16.23
Lions 13.75 Falcons 14.18333 Seahawks 16.98
Texans 13.8 Cowboys 14.46667 Chiefs 17.05
Chiefs 13.85 Colts 15.375 Broncos 17.18
Broncos 16.25 Broncos 15.7875 Rams 17.65
Colts 20.5167 Patriots 18.2 Colts 30.8

OK, I’ve been tirelessly working on a spreadsheet that breaks down defenses based on how they fare against specific positions in terms of fantasy points allowed. Its been painstaking work — especially when I lost two weeks worth of data when my travel drive crapped out on me — but I’ve finally entered enough data to give me some useful numbers. Before my first rankings, the disclaimers. First, this isn’t perfect — I did not include two-point conversions or fumbles lost by any specific position when factoring the points allowed because of how much extra data entry it would have been from the sheet I started with and because it in all honesty doesn’t make a huge difference, especially as we get deeper in the season. 

 

I don’t have all the positions finished yet — I’ve still got a lot of formulas to write. But just for your own knowledge this is a point system based on PPR. Here are all of the measurables used to calculate stats: 4 pts per passing TD, 6 pts per rushing and receiving TDs, 1 point per reception, .02 pts per passing yard, .05 pts per rushing/receiving yard, -1 for INTs. Without further adieu, the quarterbacks…

 

vs. Quarterbacks
TEAM FP OVRL TEAM FP HOME TEAM FP RD
Titans 2.66 Panthers 2.20 Titans 0.87
Browns 5.35 Eagles 3.17 Browns 2.35
Colts 5.89 Ravens 3.25 Steelers 5.20
Steelers 5.90 Colts 3.58 Bears 5.79
Panthers 6.25 Bucs 3.81 Bills 6.34
Vikings 6.53 Titans 3.85 Jets 6.51
Bills 6.59 Chiefs 5.16 Vikings 6.71
Ravens 6.80 Patriots 5.58 Packers 7.43
Eagles 7.12 Giants 5.96 Jaguars 7.53
Bears 7.42 Bengals 6.16 Cowboys 7.93
Jets 7.49 Saints 6.30 Redskins 8.08
Bengals 7.50 Vikings 6.35 Bengals 8.17
Chiefs 7.62 Steelers 6.94 Texans 8.65
Giants 7.72 Bills 6.96 Chiefs 9.27
Saints 7.98 Browns 7.35 Lions 9.31
Packers 7.99 49ers 8.41 Broncos 9.40
Bucs 8.20 Falcons 8.51 49ers 10.02
Redskins 8.28 Packers 8.55 Panthers 10.29
49ers 8.95 Redskins 8.58 Giants 10.37
Patriots 9.50 Chargers 9.14 Colts 10.52
Cowboys 9.56 Jets 9.26 Rams 10.63
Texans 10.11 Dolphins 9.53 Raiders 10.78
Raiders 10.38 Seahawks 9.75 Eagles 11.07
Falcons 10.64 Raiders 9.79 Saints 11.35
Dolphins 10.80 Cardinals 9.92 Dolphins 11.64
Broncos 10.98 Bears 10.69 Patriots 12.11
Chargers 11.09 Cowboys 11.19 Ravens 12.12
Jaguars 11.12 Broncos 11.78 Bucs 12.59
Rams 11.20 Rams 12.07 Falcons 12.78
Seahawks 11.87 Texans 12.31 Chargers 13.03
Cardinals 12.22 Jaguars 14.70 Cardinals 14.51
Lions 12.23 Lions 16.62 Seahawks 15.04

 

Granted, its not the prettiest spreadsheet you’ve ever seen, but I haven’t spent enough time with it yet to figure out how to display it nicely. Its broken down by points allowed overall, when playing at home, and when playing on the road. I’ll post running backs (primary and secondary backs) hopefully by tomorrow.

Wow, what a Week 6! The Giants, Redskins and Cowboys all go down in upset fashion, the Bears blow their third fourth-quarter lead of the season in an unfathomable way, and I lost a fantasy game by .19 points when my quarterback and defense combined for -1.92 points. But, at least I’ve got two 5-1 teams sitting in first place at the present moment, and somehow Chicago is tied for first in the NFC North despite injuries and inconsistency on defense. Now for the fantasy stuff…

 

Aaron Rodgers has three 1-yard touchdown runs this season. Ryan Grant has zero. In fact, Grant has yet to score a touchdown through six games, a disturbing trend considering where Grant fell in fantasy drafts. If Rodgers is going to be punching in touchdowns from the goal-line with a separated shoulder, there’s pretty much nothing to keep him from doing so as long as he’s upright. Meanwhile, owners can be happy about the 173 yards Grant has racked up the last two weeks, but I’m concerned about his yards per carry. Since going for 7.7 yards per jaunt in Week 1, Grant has averaged just 2.8 yards per carry. So unless he’s going to get 33 carries each game like he did against the Seahawks – which will run him into the ground by Week 10, by the way – Grant is simply not going to have fantasy value unless for some reason Mike McCarthy starts calling his number by the goal line. And after playing the Colts next week he’s got a bye, then at Tennessee and at Minnesota before a home game against Chicago. So pretty much expect to go without Grant for the next month.

 

Staying in the NFC North, Bernard Berrian has absolutely become an every-week starter. He’s averaged 99.5 yards per game in his last four, has 16 catches in his last three, and two touchdowns in his last two games. Bobby Wade is getting more looks from Gus Frerrote – making him a useful third receiver in deep PPR leagues, by the way (6.3 catches for 70 yards per game in his last three) – but Berrian is a guy that is hot right now and has a great chance of lighting up the secondary of his former team in Chicago next week.

 

Were you able to buy low on Andre Johnson after four weeks? If not, your window has slammed shut after 19 catches for 309 yards and two touchdowns in a two-week stretch. Yikes!

 

Meanwhile, your time to sell Eddie Royal high has come and gone. Not only was he hurt last week, but Darrell Jackson is now back and Brandon Stokley has 16 catches and two touchdowns the last three weeks. Jay Cutler’s suddenly got a lot of mouths to feed, meaning Royal is going to be inconsistent for fantasy owners from here on out unless injuries happen elsewhere.

 

T.J. Houshmandzadeh owners NOT in PPR leagues have reason to worry. Sure, PPR owners are likely to see production drop as well, but at least Ryan Fitzpatrick has Housh on his radar. There is talk of Carson Palmer possibly needing surgery on his elbow, which would leave Fitzpatrick under center the rest of the season. Housh has 13 catches for 99 yards in the two games Fitzpatrick has played this season, but no touchdowns in either. Needless to say, he’s probably not going to perform up to his second- or third- round potential the rest of the way is Palmer is done.

 

Did you stay away from the Tampa Bay backfield in drafts? If so, you’re likely happy at this point as Warrick Dunn and Earnest Graham continue to battle it out, with Carnell Williams not far away from joining the fight. Graham has just 70 rushing yards the last two weeks, but he also has 68 receiving and a touchdown. Dunn, meanwhile, hasn’t scored a touchdown in four weeks but has been the leading rusher the last two. Sure, these numbers have kept BOTH runners fantasy relevant, but its tough to say who will have the better digits each week and it will get even more murky when Cadillac is back. That’s just not a fun game to play.

Well, I didn’t get to watch quite as much football as usual this weekend because the gal and I are looking for a new house – so I spent a decent chunk of Sunday touring houses south of the river. However, the football I did see was fabulous despite Martin Grammatica choking away another game for the Saints. Oh, and my clubs combined to go 4-1 this weekend, making my Bradyless teams a combined 12-3 overall and at least tied for first place in all three leagues, while my teams with Tom Brady as my first overall pick jumped to 3-7 – and one of those squads still is leading the league in points despite being 1-4. Still in the playoff hunt!

 

Marty Booker and Reggie Wayne get the prizes for best catches of the year, and they happened to come on the same weekend. Wayne’s was a notch above Booker’s because it resulted in a touchdown. But as Y2Kai would say, it’s ‘like wow.’ Honorable mention to Donald Driver, whose touchdown reception any other week would’ve been the best catch of the weekend.

 

The Panthers’ run defense continuous to be phenomenal to the point where I’m likely benching any runner against them not named Tomlinson, Peterson, Addai, Westbrook or Barber – and even with those guys I wouldn’t be convinced a decent fantasy day was coming.

 

There’s not much to say about Reggie Bush other than, ‘wow, that guy is fast.’ Everyone was on the Pierre Thomas bandwagon this preseason, and for once I played a hunch that turned out to be right by sticking with Bush in anticipation of a big year. I wish I could’ve landed him in more than 40 percent of my leagues.

 

How about those first-place Bears? A victory over the Lions should really only count as a half-win these days, so I’m staying cautiously optimistic. But I could’ve sworn I saw a legitimate quarterback playing for Chicago for the second straight week, so keep an eye on Kyle Orton. I can’t believe I just wrote that. But it’s true! I haven’t picked him up yet, but with Matt Schaub on the precipice of being benched, I could wind up an Orton owner in multiple leagues.

 

Speaking of Schaub, though, I’m hoping that Sage Rosenfels’ fourth-quarter follies were enough to get Schaub another chance, and I’m hoping that what Rosenfels did in the first three quarters was enough to light a fire under Schaub to get him playing up to his ability. But for Schaub owners out there who want to rely on the Texans’ passing game and have the roster space, I’d grab Rosenfels now while you still can.

This work week has been beyond ridiculous, leaving me about as much time as Pittsburgh has healthy running backs to do any fantasy football work. But I did manage to watch some football this past weekend and make a few observations I wanted to comment on before Week 5 games get started.

 

First, I wanted to re-visit Eddie Royal. I discussed him after Week 1 as a sell-high candidate because he would be inconsistent upon Brandon Marshall’s return, which I continue to advocate. However, perhaps his most recent game is uncovering a tendency that could at least help you decide when to start or sit him. In two road games thus far, Royal is averaging nine catches for 125 yards and a half-touchdown per contest. In two games at Invesco, Royal is averaging 4.5 catches for 24 yards and a half score. I’m holding out hope that this trend breaks this week when the Broncos play host to a Tampa Bay squad allowing 306 passing yards and 2.5 passing scores per game on the road, but don’t be shocked if Royal goes silent while Marshall tears apart Ronde Barber.

 

Speaking of the Buccaneers, how about that rushing defense? Sure, they may give it up a bit in the air, but Tampa Bay has yet to cede a rushing touchdown or a 100-yard rushing game through four contests this season. And considering the Bucs faced Matt Forte, Ryan Grant, Michael Turner and Reggie Bush, that’s no small feat. Since Selvin Young has yet to score this season and Michael Pittman can’t always be guaranteed a shot at the goal line, this is probably a week to bench all Broncos running backs. In fact, the bench your backs against the Bucs theory might be in play the next three weeks until the unbenchable Marion Barber travels to Florida in Week 8.

 

Staying on the topic of defenses for a moment, its time to point out that the Chargers simply cannot stop the pass. I mean, we all knew it would be difficult without a healthy Shawne Merriman for this unit to live up to its potential, but this is borderline embarrassing. Through four games, San Diego is giving up more than 286 yards and 2.5 passing scores per game. These numbers are bad enough on their own, but now consider that they come after facing a Carolina team without Steve Smith in Week 1 and a dysfunctional Raiders squad in Week 4 that hadn’t passed for more than 180 yards in the first three weeks. It’s to the point that I would feel comfortable in a pinch playing Chad Pennington this week and Trent Edwards (although he’s becoming more serviceable by the day) in Week 7. If your quarterback goes down with an injury the final week of the fantasy regular season, keep in mind that the possibly available Matt Ryan gets the Chargers in Week 13.

 

Finally, in a year where so far its seemed an above average number of receivers have shown up big one week only to flop the next, consistency in a group of mediocre free agents is key. I’m starting to convince myself I’ve found it in Tennessee, where Kerry Collins has been a non-fantasy factor, but may have found a favorite target in Justin Gage. In the two full games Gage has been healthy for with Collins at quarterback the entire time, he’s caught five passes each game while averaging 75.5 yards. He’s even got a touchdown! I’m not saying he’s an every-week starter, but if you’ve been busy chasing the previous week’s stats at the wide receiver position because Jerry Porter, Reggie Williams, Javon Walker and a host of others have been flops so far, Gage might be the guy to fill in the back part of your roster.