2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Studs and Duds: Championship Games

2012-01-23 10:26:28
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
RealTime Fantasy Sports

Another big game for Cruz

Wow. That is about all you can say about the games this weekend. You couldn't have asked for two better games. One gets decided in overtime and the other is won on a missed field goal with time running out. These games certainly had you on the edge of your seat, which is about all you can ask for at this time of year.

The games also were a little bit away from the norm for the season. We didn't have offensive shootouts as defenses showed up to play. All four teams played pretty well defensively throughout the games. Sure, we had some good offensive performances but ultimately, the team defenses won out this week. Don't expect this to be a trend going forward but just remember good defenses can still win games for teams.

Patriots 23, Ravens 20

Fantasy Stud: Joe Flacco. Not many would have predicted Flacco outplaying Tom Brady but that was the case in this one. Flacco was extremely sharp, going 22-of-36 for 306 yards and two touchdowns with an interception. Flacco also setup the Ravens for the go-ahead touchdown with less than a minute to go in the game, but the ball was dropped in the end zone by Lee Evans. So Flacco could have scored three touchdowns. He proved a lot in this game, showing he can carry the offense if needed. Hopefully, this gives him some confidence going into 2012.

Fantasy Dud: Tom Brady. Brady had a really disappointing game for his standards. He failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time all season. He was 22-of-36 for 239 yards with two interceptions. He did rush in a score, which helped some, but his overall game was still disappointing. His yardage total was his second lowest of the season and he had multiple interceptions for just the fourth time all year. It was a tough matchup, though, so we wouldn't look too much into this. He remains an elite signal caller in this league.

Game Notes: Rob Gronkowksi apparently left the locker room in a boot but said the injury isn't a big deal and he'll be fine. Gronkowski played the entire game and performed, so the injury doesn't appear too serious. He caught five passes for 87 yards.

With Steven Ridley a surprise inactive, BenJarvus Green-Ellis carried the load at running back for the Patriots. Green-Ellis had a very good showing against a good Ravens rush defense, rushing 15 times for 68 yards and a touchdown. His yardage total was his highest since Week 11.

Giants 20, 49ers 17

Fantasy Stud: Vernon Davis. Davis had his second straight big showing in the playoffs, scoring both touchdowns for the 49ers. He caught three passes for 112 yards and two touchdowns. Davis really put on a show in his two playoff games, catching 10 passes for 292 yards and four touchdowns. He had three straight 100-yard games to end his season. Davis had a bit of an up and down season for the 49ers but could have a big role in the offense from day one in 2012.

Fantasy Dud: Michael Crabtree. Crabtree was the only 49ers' receiver to catch a pass, but it was for just three yards. So he finished the game with one reception for three yards. He did score a touchdown in the playoff opener for the 49ers but finished the two playoff games with just five receptions for 28 yards. Crabtree has a lot of potential and upside but hasn't quite lived up to the hype just yet. Next season could be a make or break year for him.

Game Notes: Eli Manning remains red hot, going 32-of-58 for 316 yards and two touchdowns without a turnover. Manning has 300-yard games two of three playoff games and eight touchdowns to just one interception in all playoff games this season.

Victor Cruz was the go-to receiver for the Giants. He caught 10 passes for 142 yards. Cruz has 140-plus yards three of his past five games. He has an amazing eight 100-yard games this season.

If you have any questions or comments, please email Jeff Paur at jeff@rtsports.com

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

R. Griffin IIIOct 22 11:43p

Updating a previous report, there is no chance Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) plays in the Week 8 game against the Dallas Cowboys Monday, Oct. 27, multiple sources said Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Zach MettenbergerOct 22 11:03p

The Tennessee Titans plan to start QB Zach Mettenberger in Week 8 against the Houston Texans, a source familiar with the situation said Wednesday, Oct. 22. Indications are Mettenberger [ More ]

Jake LockerOct 22 10:53p

Tennessee Titans QB Jake Locker (thumb) is in the final year of his contract after the team declined to pick up a fifth-year option. He is reportedly making progress [ More ]

Justin TuckOct 22 09:43p

Oakland Raiders TE David Ausberry (foot), CB Keith McGill (groin), CB Carlos Rogers (knee), DE LaMarr Woodley (biceps) and FS Usama Young (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. [ More ]

Bobby WagnerOct 22 08:03p

Seattle Seahawks SS Kam Chancellor (ankle), DT Jordan Hill (ankle), CB Byron Maxwell (calf), C Max Unger (foot) and LB Bobby Wagner (toe) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. [ More ]

Zach MillerOct 22 08:03p

Seattle Seahawks FB Derrick Coleman (foot) and TE Zach Miller (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22, and they have been ruled out for Week 8 against the Carolina Panthers.

Frostee RuckerOct 22 06:53p

Arizona Cardinals DE Calais Campbell (knee) and TE Troy Niklas (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. S Rashad Johnson (knee) was limited, while DE Frostee Rucker (calf) practiced in full.

Johnathan JosephOct 22 06:53p

Houston Texans LB Brian Cushing (knee), CB Johnathan Joseph (knee), CB Darryl Morris (ankle), LB Brooks Reed (groin), LB John Simon (ankle) and LB Jeff Tarpinian (knee) did not [ More ]

Cyrus GrayOct 22 06:33p

Kansas City Chiefs WR Donnie Avery (groin) has been ruled out for Week 8 against the St. Louis Rams. WR Junior Hemingway (hamstring) and CB Christopher Owens (knee) did [ More ]

Tre MasonOct 22 06:32p

St. Louis Rams RB Tre Mason could be the top candidate for a majority of carries since he is averaging 5.4 yards per carry. Mason rushed for 85 yards [ More ]

Dion SimsOct 22 05:53p

Miami Dolphins T Branden Albert (elbow), CB Cortland Finnegan (neck), WR Brandon Gibson (knee), CB Brent Grimes (groin), C Samson Satele (hamstring), TE Dion Sims (neck) and S Jimmy [ More ]

Jo-Lonn DunbarOct 22 05:43p

St. Louis Rams C Tim Barnes (shoulder), DE William Hayes (illness), CB Janoris Jenkins (knee), S T.J. McDonald (concussion) and OT Rodger Saffold (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. [ More ]

Scott SolomonOct 22 05:43p

Cleveland Browns WR Jonathan Krause, Seattle Seahawks TE Rashaun Allen and Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Solomon Patton and DE Scott Solomon cleared waivers and became free agents Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Billy WinnOct 22 05:33p

Cleveland Browns DE Desmond Bryant (wrist) and LB Barkeveous Mingo both fully participated in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. DE Ahtyba Rubin (ankle) and CB K'Waun Williams (concussion) were both [ More ]

Lance BriggsOct 22 05:23p

Chicago Bears CB Kyle Fuller (hand, hip) and SS Danny McCray (knee) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. LB Jonathan Bostic (back) and LB Lance Briggs (ribs) [ More ]

Sharrif FloydOct 22 05:13p

Minnesota Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph (hernia), LB Gerald Hodges (hamstring) and C John Sullivan (concussion) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. DE Corey Wootton (back), DT Sharrif Floyd (ankle), [ More ]

Dashon GoldsonOct 22 05:13p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Jonathan Casillas (hamstring), OT Anthony Collins (knee), S Dashon Goldson (ankle) and S Keith Tandy (hamstring) were limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. C Johnthan Banks (neck) practiced in full.

Brandon BrownerOct 22 05:13p

New England Patriots DE Chandler Jones (hip) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. CB Brandon Browner (ankle), LB Jamie Collins (thigh), OG Dan Connolly (concussion), DE Dominique [ More ]

Josh McCownOct 22 05:13p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Josh McCown (thumb) was listed as a limited participant in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Brett KeiselOct 22 05:03p

Pittsburgh Steelers OT Marcus Gilbert (concussion), DE Brett Keisel (non-injury), DT Steve McLendon (shoulder), FS Mike Mitchell (non-injury) and SS Troy Polamalu (non-injury) did not participate in practice Wednesday, [ More ]

Jimmy GrahamOct 22 04:53p

New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham (shoulder) was limited during practice Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Jonathan GoodwinOct 22 04:53p

New Orleans Saints C Jonathan Goodwin (ankle, knee) and LB Kyle Knox (ankle) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. CB Keenan Lewis (knee, shoulder), LB Ramon Humber [ More ]

Thomas DavisOct 22 04:53p

Carolina Panthers CB Bene Benwikere (ankle), LB Chase Blackburn (knee), WR Philly Brown (concussion), LB Thomas Davis (non-injury), S Roman Harper (non-injury), OG Amini Silatolu (calf), OG Trai Turner [ More ]

A.J. GreenOct 22 04:43p

Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green (toe) wasn't feeling good enough to return to practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. Head coach Marvin Lewis said Green won't play in Week 8 against [ More ]

Pierre ThomasOct 22 04:43p

New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas (rib, shoulder) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Reggie WayneOct 22 04:33p

Indianapolis Colts WR Reggie Wayne (elbow) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Jake LockerOct 22 04:33p

Tennessee Titans QB Jake Locker (thumb) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Kelechi OsemeleOct 22 04:33p

Baltimore Ravens DE Chris Canty (wrist) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. OT Eugene Monroe (knee) and OG Kelechi Osemele (knee) practiced in full.

Gosder CherilusOct 22 04:33p

Indianapolis Colts TE Jack Doyle (knee) and OT Gosder Cherilus (rest) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. CB Darius Butler (ankle) was limited during practice, while DT [ More ]

James StarksOct 22 04:33p

Green Bay Packers RB James Starks (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. Starks injured the ankle in Week 7 against the Carolina Panthers.

Brandon ThompsonOct 22 04:33p

Cincinnati Bengals LB Rey Maualuga (hamstring) has been ruled out for Week 8 against the Baltimore Ravens. DE Robert Geathers (toe), CB Leon Hall (back) and OG Mike Pollak [ More ]

Andre BranchOct 22 04:23p

Jacksonville Jaguars CB Alan Ball (bicep) and DE Andre Branch (groin) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 22. C Luke Bowanko (ankle), CB Aaron Colvin (knee) and S Craig Loston (hamstring) were limited.

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