Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Jacksonville Jaguars
Bar none, this looks by far the worst game of the week to watch, both for fantasy value and for entertainment value. Seriously, if the Buccaneers and Jaguars fall in a forest, would anyone be around to hear it? Is anyone actually reading this? Ok, on a more serious note, both the Buccaneers and Jaguars come into this game without much hope, but only one is really downtrodden because of the high expectations during the off-season. Most people expected the Buccaneers to challenge once again for a playoff berth, but instead the defense has been sieve-like, and Josh Freeman had to make up for last year’s turnover-free campaign and throw enough INTs and lose enough fumbles for two whole seasons, let alone one. The Bucs are 4-8, and things are definitely not looking up, as they’ve lost six straight and seven of their last eight, and have let the opposing team score at least three touchdowns or more in seven games this year. Luckily for them, the Jaguars would be hard pressed to score three touchdowns over the course of two games, as the Jags sport the worst scoring offense in the league.
Speaking of the Jaguars, they actually do have some hope, which came at the expense of firing Jack Del Rio, whose uninspired vanilla coaching actually does a disservice to the flavor of vanilla. With the coaching staff getting a little more creative, Blaine Gabbert had one of his better games last week against the Chargers, throwing for nearly 200 yards and two scores… which is sad when that’s probably the best stat line your coach’s game plan could muster. Maurice Jones-Drew also was finally re-introduced to the passing game, as he was able to roll up over 90 yards receiving and was targeted more than any other player. Unfortunately the fantasy value on this team begins and ends with Jones-Drew, so if you don’t own him, then you can ignore the Jags altogether… which most everyone in the country has, including the people living in Jacksonville.
The Buccaneers can muster some value in fantasy circles, with both Mike Williams and Kellen Winslow having better games as of late. The Jaguars defense has been decimated by injuries in the secondary, so both Williams and Winslow are pretty good plays here. The Jaguars are still tough against the run, but they too are showing some cracks as Ryan Mathews was able to hit them for over 110 yards and a score. Legarrette Blount is a different kind of runner certainly, much slower and more ox-like, but he should still manage to get about 70 yards and a score, making him a worthwhile play as well.
RB Legarrette Blount, WR Mike Williams, TE Kellen Winslow, RB Maurice Jones-Drew
Middle of the Road:
QB Josh Freeman, TE Marcedes Lewis
WR Arrelius Benn, WR Preston Parker, All other Jaguars.