Ottawa RedBlacks @ Toronto Argos
Welcome to the Trevor Harris Roller Coaster ride. So far this year his FTPS production has been good, bad, good, bad, good, bad. If trend continues, he should be good for the matchup against Toronto. lol. Toronto’s Defense is currently 2nd worst in the league giving up FPTS to QBs. Despite the offense really struggling to get going last week, with 7 field goals and not a single major score to be found, I think this is a good bounce-back opportunity for Trevor.
William Powell deserves a look this week. Averaging over 18 touches per game on the season, with his opportunities gradually increasing. He has over 100 combined yards in both of his last two games. Toronto has given up three big games to backfields this season and averages 4th worst giving up FPTS to RBs.
Brad Sinopoli finds himself the #1 receiver in Ottawa. Only slightly ahead of Ellingson in targets, he is clearly ahead in receptions and receiving yards. Averaging 110 yards in his last four games has translated to almost 23 FPTS per game.
Ellingson hasn’t given us a double-digit FPTS performance since week 3. Spencer’s special teams salvages his stats as he’s only seeing an average of 34 receiving yards per game. There should be opportunity here, as Toronto is 2nd worst in the league giving up 55 FPTS combined to receiving cores every week. A QB-WR stack here seems appropriate.
If you’re looking for a value QB, James Franklin is not it. Ottawa isn’t anything special against QBs, Franklin just does not perform. He has five games under 12 FTPS, averaging only 161 yards passing per game. Therefore…
The Argos have announced that they will start McLeod Bethel-Thompson for week 8. McLeod is a perfect 2-2 for 10 yards in his career. That was back in 2017. A value pick here is a risky pick. I’ll never trust a guy with three last names.
Of more interest, is James Wilder Jr. In his 6 starts this season he has 6 double-digit FPTS performances. Albeit a couple, just barely. However he has over 20 FPTS in 3 of his last 4. On four occasions this year, Ottawa has given more than 18 FPTS to backfields.
I’m looking for Declan Cross scoring a major in that flare route – delayed screen pass for the new QB. Sleeper of the week.
Against wide outs, Ottawa has given up an average of 61 FPTS in their last three games. Can Toronto take advantage? There’s not a single TO receiver averaging double-digit FPTS.
Sask Roughriders @ Edmonton Eskimos
To get things going here I’ll state the obvious – you can’t start a Roughrider QB in Fantasy. Dead last in the league and averaging only 10 FPTS per game. Will the return of Collaros change that? We haven’t seen much from him in Rider Green yet, but what we saw in Week 1 doesn’t leave me overly optimistic.
And there is still no clarity on Saskatchewan’s backfield situation. It’s a true committee backfield, unpredictable and ugly. Thigpen is leading the way in usage, but giving up enough to Messam ( now released ) and Mason that the start is simply too risky. A long-shot could be taken against an Edmonton Defense surrendering the most FPTS to backfields, but I’m going to avoid the uncertainty. Perhaps Messam’s release will provide some clarity in coming weeks.
Eight different receivers saw action last week for Saskatchewan. Eight! Compare that to Ottawa’s Four. Only one of those Eight saw more than 4 targets. For the same reason you can’t pick a Sask RB, same goes for their WRs. Surprisingly, Edmonton ranks 2nd best in the league giving few FPTS to wide outs. Watch for the return of Duron Carter.
Mike Reilly put up a ridiculous amount of Fantasy Points last week with 4 passing touchdowns, 1 rushing score and over 400 yards in the air. This week he’ll face a much more competent defense. The most FPTS Sask has surrendered to QBs this season so far was 21 to Ottawa. Expect Mike Reilly to have a day, but a much more typical day.
CJ Gable is a hard one to pin down. Edmonton has been inconsistent with their backfield usage, and now we also see rookie Jordan Robinson getting some touches. In games so far this year, CJ has seen as few as 12 touches, and as many as 24. His floor to ceiling is just ugly and unpredictable. Against a steadily improving Saskatchewan Defense I can’t recommend this start. Sask is currently 2nd best in the league giving few FPTS to Running Backs.
Duke Williams. In salary leagues he’s going to be tough to afford very soon. For good reason. He’s averaging a ridiculous 19 yards per catch. By comparison, Eric Rogers and Derel Walker average 15, Brad Sinopoli averaging 12. He’s seeing over 10 targets per game and only has one game under 105 receiving yards.
Derel Walker becomes an attractive option – you know he’s still getting his, and his salary is more palatable. 7 targets per game, 4 touchdowns on the season. Every down on the field he’s a threat to make that one big play. We’ve seen only one single-digit FPTS performance from him this season.
Kenny Stafford emerges as the clear #3 in Edmonton. Just behind Walker in targets and averaging 12 FPTS per game. There’s value to be had here.
Hamilton Ti-Cats @ Montreal Alouettes
Everyone in the league gets their opportunity to pick on the Alouettes. This week is Jeremiah Masoli’s turn. Coming off a game lacking offense last week, Masoli still turned it into a half-decent FPTS performance. Expect him to have his way against Montreal – he needs a bounce-back game. Only one TD in his last three, and throwing up at least one interception per game on the season. Lots of opportunity and time on the field will turn into production. Montreal gives up a staggering 26 FPTS per game to QBs.
*sigh* John White was supposed to be the fantasy saviour in salary leagues. Taking the starting role in the backfield and commanding a minimal salary was tempting and turned out to be a fantasy mirage. Only 8 touches, 25 yards and 2.5 FPTS doesn’t get it done. While I expect more against a lowly Montreal Defense, I’m still tempering expectations – not related to the matchup, just based on historical usage. Might continue to be a value play but trick me once, shame on me… Still waiting to hear any Alex Green updates.
Hamilton is loaded at receiver, making it hard to find the right pick. Last week was Saunders, going over 150 yards with a TD. Brandon Banks continues to see big usage numbers, targeted over 10 times per game on average. Watch for his injury status as the week progresses.
Tasker and Toliver practiced this week, which is a good sign for them starting. Montreal is dead last against receivers, giving over 60 FPTS per game to receiving cores. Another good opportunity to find a QB-WR stack.
This week we will see Johnny Manziel start. Vernon Adams Jr actually impressed me more than I expected last week, albeit against a terrible and undisciplined Edmonton Defense. It will be a tougher matchup against Hamilton and I, personally, will be avoiding the uncertainty, especially with Johnny’s unusually high introductory salary.
I’ve mentioned before that Tyrell Sutton is really the only fantasy option available in Montreal. He’s done over 15 FPTS in each of his last three games, going over 100 combined yards each time. He only has one game that wasn’t a double-digit performance. Hamilton is pretty consistent against RBs, 4th best in the league, having given big games up to Calgary and Saskatchewan twice.
I won’t waste your time or my time discussing how you’re not taking guys like Ernest Jackson, George Johnson or Eugene Lewis. BJ Cunnningham is a value flier for those like taking risks. Hamilton is solid against WRs, 3rd best in the league.
BC Lions @ Calgary Stampeders
I was looking forward to getting a salary friendly QB start in Travis Lulay. Until I saw he’s facing the Stamps. You just can’t start any QB against the Stamps ( I am looking forward to see what Mr. Reilly can do on Labour day ). The number one Defense against QBs is only giving up an average of 9.03 FPTS to the position. Over their last four games it looks even worse – 6.07 FPTS given up to QBs.
The Lions are looking at some uncertainty in their backfield. JJohnson went out a couple weeks ago. Rutley came in and gave us a good game, only to go the 6 game IR. We’ll have to wait and see what JJ’s availability is, or if the recently added Travon Van will be a go. Either way it’s a risky play against the Stamps Defense, first in the league against RBs. *Edit – you’re not starting an RB against Calgary but just in case, it looks like JJ will get the start.
With Lulay at the helm, Manny Arceneaux and Bryan Burnham have new life. Manny is averaging 20 FPTS over his last couple. Burnham and Shaq Johnson in line for the number two. However, once again the Stamps D are first in this category.
Bo Levi isn’t a huge fantasy QB. The offense doesn’t have to score big when your defense is this good. That said, Bo will face a BC defense that is not particularly good in Fantasy formats. Giving up the 3rd most to QBs, Bo has an opportunity here. Nick Arbuckle currently vultures 15 percent of the FPTS at the position, as Bo is back to non-mobile status.
Don Jackson was a surprise scratch last week. However, it wasn’t Terry Williams who benefit the most, rookie Romar Morris took the bulk of the carries. Whoever it’s going to be for week 8 has a decent opportunity, against a BC defense 2nd worst in the league to RBs.
And Calgary’s receiving core will have a great opportunity to put up points against a mediocre BC defense – ranked 6th best in the league giving up few FPTS to receivers. Eric Rogers only brought in 1 catch last week but it was for a TD. Kamar Jorden and Davaris Daniels saw the most usage with 6 and 7 targets respectively.
Jorden sees 8 targets per game on average, turning that into 5 receptions, 66 yards and 15 FPTS. He has three TDs on the season.
Daniels has three games over 14 FPTS, and three games under 8. He has opportunity every week but the uncertainty would make me avoid. Bo really spreads the ball around and has plenty of talent to look at.