Fantasy Football Forecast: A Ghoulish Week 9

Jake Locker

Are we having fun yet? The Fantasy Football Forecast (MFFF) has had its ups and downs this year, but we're starting to come on strong, just in time for that most wonderfully devilish day of the year (Halloween, of course). As we celebrate another All Hallows' Eve, let's take a look at some fiendishly good picks to stack your roster with as we set to do battle in Week 9. With team byes in full swing, it's a bloodbath out there, but as any bloodthirsty vampire will tell you, red is in this season.

Tennessee QB Jake Locker: Is it time to give the devil his due? In the case of Locker, maybe so. He's consistently flown under the radar in fantasy compared to some of the more heralded  young QBs out there, but the numbers don't lie: he's taken the next step this season, and his running ability gives you gravy points, Wth a manageable schedule ahead, he should continue to put up decent stats, but speaking of the devil, be aware of this devil of a detail: he's injury-prone.

Miami RB Daniel Thomas and Green Bay WR James Starks: Nothing like being a succubus and piggybacking off the energy of others, right? Thomas and Starks would agree: neither of them are starters, yet both continue to put up fantasy value because they're part of offensive machines that generate yards and points no matter who happens to get the ball. And if injury would happen to strike (insert best Vincent Price sinister laugh here), both are in line to put up starting RB numbers.

Arizona RB Andre Ellington: Ellington has become a very hot commodity these past few weeks, and his 154 yards last week appear to herald him as a fantasy force. Cards coach Bruce Arians is non-committal on whether Arrington has the starting job sewn up, but we here at MFFF have a simple rule that we tend to adhere to in situations such as these: barring injury, you go with the hot hand until he proves otherwise.

Cincinnati WR Marvin Jones: Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde? That's the quandary fantasy owners face when it comes to the Bengals WR. On the one hand, he's broken out in a big way the past few weeks, including a ridiculous 122 yards and 4 TDs last Sunday, yet he still only sees the field sporadically (only 19 snaps last week), and with slot WR Andrew Hawkins coming back from injury, his days as a fantasy force this year may be numbered. Given Jones' undeniable talent (and our hot-hand theory, see above), we're betting the Bengals will continue riding his monstrous, Hyde-like performances.

New Orleans WRs Lance Moore and Kenny Stills: Beware the siren call of Saints QB Drew Brees, undeniably the #1 fantasy QB in the land right now. Given his gaudy stats, it's easy to salivate over his entire stable of WRs, especially with Moore and Stills coming off juicy games last week. The problem is that with the exception of all-world TE Jimmy Graham, Brees seems to feature a different hot hand every week, which means that a grab for fantasy gold may end up making you look like a fantasy fool, depending on how the wheel spins on any given Sunday. Still, Moore and Stills are decent plays if you need emergency fill-ins.

Defense: Oakland Raiders. We couldn't celebrate Halloween without at least a mention of the evil Silver and Black, could we? Oakland may not be all the way back to prominence, but its defense is certainly recapturing some of its intimdating edge of old, with some impressive beat-downs lately. This week they get a beat-up Eagle team with the barely recovered Nick Foles at QB -- this could make for a genuine horror show, and it's only fitting given this game's setting in the Black Hole of Oakland Coliseum.

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