by Joe Fortenbaugh
September 25, 02012
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals: The second-year quarterback is averaging 289 passing yards and two touchdowns per game this season and has topped the 300-yard mark in each of his last two starts. Dalton’s coming along nicely and currently looks like a rock-solid QB2 with QB1 potential, based on the situation.
Mikel Leshoure, RB, Detroit Lions: If for some reason he’s still out there, go grab him immediately. After rushing for 100 yards on 26 carries in his first career start on Sunday, Leshoure has officially solidified himself as the No. 1 running back in Detroit.
Christian Ponder, QB, Minnesota Vikings: He has yet to throw an interception this season and currently boasts a QB rating of 104.9 through three games. Consider Ponder a QB2 with situational start upside. He’s developing quicker than most expected.
Bilal Powell, RB, New York Jets: Powell’s seen an increase in carries each week this season and word on the street is that the Jets are starting to grow tired of Shonn Greene’s lack of production. A change could be coming in the very near future.
ICONDalton has been delivering very impressive numbers so far this season.
Ronnie Hillman, RB, Denver Broncos: No word on the extent of damage running back Willis McGahee suffered last Sunday when he busted up his ribs against the Houston Texans. Should the former Miami Hurricane be held out of action for a significant time period, Hillman would be given an opportunity to demonstrate that the Broncos made the right call spending a third round pick on him.
Nate Washington, WR, Tennessee Titans: He’s only caught seven passes on the year, so don’t expect Washington to become the type of receiver that carries your fantasy team week in and week out. However, he’s found the end zone in two of his first three games and has big-play capabilities. Consider Washington a WR3/WR4 you can use during the bye weeks.
Heath Miller, TE, Pittsburgh Steelers: Did you know that Miller currently ranks third in fantasy scoring at the tight end position? He’s averaging 5.0 receptions per game this season and has found the end zone four times through three games. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger loves looking for this guy once the Steelers reach the red zone.
St. Louis Rams, D/ST: Not the type of unit you will own for the entire season, but St. Louis has a date with a Seattle Seahawks offense this Sunday that is A) Averaging just 19.0 pts/gm this season, B) Is coming off a short week following their Monday night game against the Packers and C) Hasn’t thrown for more than 140 yards in any game yet this season. This is a good spot for the Rams.
Daniel Thomas, RB, Miami Dolphins: It looks like Reggie Bush owners may have dodged a bullet after the star running back’s MRI came back showing no structural damage. But just to be on the safe side, and considering Bush isn’t 100% guaranteed to play this weekend, owners should take a look at second-year running back Daniel Thomas, who picked up 69 yards and a score in relief duty last Sunday against the Jets.
Tashard Choice, RB, Buffalo Bills: It’s possible C.J. Spiller could play this weekend after suffering a shoulder injury in Week 3 against the Browns and in addition, Fred Jackson is scheduled to make his return to the lineup sometime in the near future as well. As a result, Choice isn’t worth a top waiver claim, but for those of you in deeper leagues with some open roster space, grabbing Choice just to stash him isn’t an awful idea.
Joel Dreessen, TE, Denver Broncos: The former Houston Texan hauled in two receptions for 36 yards and a score in Sunday’s loss against the Texans, but now that starting tight end Jacob Tamme is battling a groin injury, Dreessen could be in line for more snaps moving forward.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts: This is a recommendation for owners in deeper fantasy leagues who are looking for a WR4/5 with some upside. The wide receiver situation in Indianapolis will be very tough to predict this season, but with Austin Collie out for the year, rookie T.Y. Hilton could start getting more snaps after his 4-catch, 128-yard, 1-score performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars last Sunday.
Arizona Cardinals, D/ST: No way this unit should still be available on waivers. The Cardinals are giving up just 13.3 points per game so far this season while forcing six turnovers and recording 12 sacks. These guys aren’t just worthy of a roster spot, they deserve to be in your starting lineup.
Kyle Rudolph, TE, Minnesota Vikings: He keeps getting better with each game. Rudolph scored 6.0 fantasy points in Week 1, 9.5 fantasy points in Week 2 and 15.6 fantasy points in Week 3. And with Christian Ponder getting better and better every time he steps onto the field, there’s really no reason why Rudolph should still be sitting out there on the wire.
Dennis Pitta, TE, Baltimore Ravens: We mentioned him last week and by now, everybody should have gotten the message. With a staggering 31 targets through three games, not to mention two touchdowns in two of three starts, Pitta currently makes for a solid TE1 in leagues with ten or more teams.
Shaun Hill, QB, Detroit Lions: If Stafford is unable to play this weekend against the Vikings, don’t hesitate to take a good, long look at Hill. He’s got plenty of starting experience and still has that guy named Calvin Johnson at his disposal. Not only that, but Hill racked up 172 yards and two scores in less than one quarter of action on Sunday.
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