Cleat Geeks

Cover 3: Week 10

Can you believe it? It’s already week ten! Every team now has played over half of their games, and they soon will need to decide if they are competing for now, or preparing for next season. Luckily for us, there are a bunch of great matchups this week that will not only be exciting to watch, but they also hold a ton of value regarding whether or not a team will see the postseason.


Fantasy Jackpot Game of the Week—New Orleans Saints vs Washington Redskins


This week’s “Fantasy Jackpot” will be between two passing offenses who have played pretty well lately, and two defenses who definitely have not. With both teams needing a win to stay alive in their division, this should be a game for both offenses to be very motivated for.

The Saints enter this game 4-5 with their offense leading the way for their team. The offense has averaged 439 yards per game while scoring an average of 26.8 points. The offense has needed to put up points sincemark-ingram-cowboys-saintsjpg-cd506956cf94354f their defense is giving up 29.8 points, which is second-worst to only the Lions. Drew Brees has been on fire and has failed to reach 300 yards only twice this season. He has 2,763 total passing yards, which is good for the second-most. Receivers Willie Snead and Brandon Cooks along with tight end Ben Watson have gotten the majority of Brees’ yards. All three have 40+ catches, at least one 40+ yard catch, and at least three touchdowns. Running back Mark Ingram has also put together a great season with 584 yards and five touchdowns on the ground to go along with 37 catches for 316 yards. The offense seems to be pretty matchup-proof, but this Tampa Bay defense is not great either. They rank in the middle for both rushing and passing yards allowed, but their pass defense seems to be a little overrated. Everyone I mentioned should have good days, and I expect the Saints to take advantage of the Bucs’ secondary and pass often.

With a loss on Sunday, it will basically shut down any hopes that Tampa had for the postseason. Luckily for them, they will be playing at home against a TERRIBLE Saints defense; They allow 428.9 yards per game with 292 coming through the air. This should make Kirk Cousins and all of his receivers very excited! Cousins has thrown the ball 40+ times in five of the last six games, and I fully expect him to do it again since they will have to keep up with the Saints’ offense. Cousins could easily be a top-ten play this week, and this should lead to a really big game from Jordan Reed. The Saints give up the second-most points to tight ends this year, and Reed has been the focal point of the offense when he has been healthy. A Cousins/Reed stack in daily leagues will definitely be a popular one this week. Desean Jackson is also back for the Redskins, and he has looked much faster in practice this week. He is a boom-or-bust guy, but I could easily see him getting a line like four catches for 100+ yards and a touchdown. Others who will benefit from this passing attack will be Garcon, Crowder, Thompson, and Jones. Thompson will be getting a lot of the work catching the ball out of the backfield, but Jones will also be used in the role along with running the ball too. When the Redskins start passing the ball a lot, Morris doesn’t get much work, so I would avoid him if you can this week.


“Bad Blood” Game of the Week—New England Patriots vs New York Giants


The “Bad Blood” game this week is between none other than the Patriots and the Giants. I think Brady might have a little bit of anger still built up after getting upset by the Giants not once, but twice in the Super Bowl. Shane Vereen, who was once the pass-catching running back for Bill Belichick and the Patriots, will be suiting up for the Giants this week as one of many guys in that running back committee.

The Patriots are still undefeated and the team to beat in the league right now. Tom Brady, not surprisingly, has had a career year so far by throwing 22 touchdowns to only two interceptions. He now gets to play against a secondary that gives up 314.4 passing yards per game. He will be passing to Gronkowski, Edelman, LaFell, and Amendola. His passing-threat out of the backfield, Dion Lewis, tore his ACL last week and will be out the remainder of the season. This leaves the lead-back duties to LeGarrette Blount, who has proved to play great towards the end of the season. They hope he can continue this pattern, because they will need a running game if they want to compete for another title. The rest of the backfield is pretty much a question mark, but I would guess that James White, from Wisconsin, will take over most of the receiving-back duties. This game is in favor of the Patriots, but if anyone can knock out an undefeated Patriot team, it’s the Giants.

The Giants enter the game 5-4 and alone atop the NFC East. If I had to describe this team, I would say that they are a talented, but inconsistent team that struggles to close out games. Eli shane-vereen-nfl-new-york-giants-dallas-cowboys-850x560Manning has been up-and-down this season, like usual, but they hope they see good Eli on Sunday. When he’s been good, he’s been GOOD. Like, six touchdowns with no interceptions good! Unfortunately for him, the defense still lost him that game against the Saints. He has mostly been throwing to Odell Beckham Jr., Rueben Randle, Shane Vereen, and Dwayne Harris. It has been a true running back by committee for the Giants with Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Andre Williams, and Orleans Darkwa all getting carries. Defensively, they have been pretty terrible. They are happy to get Jason Pierre-Paul back from his firework injury, and they hope that he will help generate a pass rush. If the Giants are unable to pressure Brady, they really don’t have a chance to win this game.


Must-Watch Showdown—Arizona Cardinals vs Seattle Seahawks


This week’s “Must-Watch Showdown” is between two NFC West rivals: Cardinals and Seahawks. With a game this good, they had to show it on Sunday Night Football! A win for the Cardinals basically clinches the division for them, and a loss for the Seahawks will basically knock them out from playoff contention.

The Cardinals enter the game 6-2 and have had one of the best offenses in the league. The offense led by Carson Palmer has generated 32.9 points per game. They will have the tough task of facing the Seahawks in Seattle, where they have given up only 12.3 points per game this season. Palmer has been playing some of his best football this season, and he averages nearly 300 yards per game. He has been spreading the love by throwing to Fitzgerald, Brown, and Floyd, among others. Chris Johnson has found new life in Arizona, and took over the lead-back duties quickly. He has averaged nearly 100 yards rushing per game after week one. Along with the offense’s play, the defense has also been strong for the Cardinals. They have given up only 19.1 points per game, but they will face one of their tougher tasks this season on Sunday night in Seattle.

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals

The Seahawks are fighting to keep their playoff chances alive every single week from this point forward. They have had many bumps in the road this season, which started all the way back in August when Chancellor decided to holdout. The offensive line has been one of the biggest challenges for Seattle this season. They have been unable to open lanes for Lynch, or the other backs, to run. They also have failed to protect Wilson, who has been forced out of the pocket on a consistent basis, and this has resulted in 31 sacks on the season, the most of any team. Along with the 31 sacks, they also have given up a recorded 60 QB hits, but that number is obviously much higher since Wilson also likes to scramble with the ball. The poor play of the line has caused the running game to suffer, has not allowed Wilson enough time to pass the ball downfield, and has caused many three-and-outs. The defense has spent a lot of time on the field, which makes their performance overall even more impressive. No, they are not has talented as years past, but they are still one of the top defenses in the league. For the Seahawks to win this game, the defense will have to get off the field quickly, and the offense will need to sustain drives. If they can do this, they have a great shot to pull off the upset on Sunday Night Football.


What did you think of this week’s Cover 3? Who do you think will win between the Cardinals and the Seahawks? You can post your questions, answers, and comments down below, or talk to me over on Twitter @FantasyFlurry. If you mention that you read the “Cover 3” article, I’ll be sure to give you a shout-out!

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