Week 8: Player Upgrades

Football > Week 08 > Player Upgrades

Week 8: Player Upgrades

The passers, runners and receivers rising the short and long term fantasy football ranks This week's picks include Profiled players include Robert Griffin III, Jake Locker, Le'Veon Bell, Zac Stacy, and Harry Douglas.

If Sunday's win over the Bears was an indicator of how the remainder of the season will play out for Robert Griffin, then buckle up. After throwing just one touchdown in three games, Griffin threw two against Chicago and didn't turn the ball over for just the second time this season. He was efficient and showed much of the explosive running ability that endeared him to fantasy owners last year. In fact, RGIII has run for 161 yards over the past two weeks and in turn his success on the ground has opened up the passing game. The schedule is also very favorable to RGIII as he begins to bounce back from last year's knee injury. Eight of his final 10 games come against teams who are in the top ten in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks.

Locker threw his first interception against the Niners, but also posted his first 300-yard passing game of the season to go along with a pair of touchdowns. He has eight touchdown passes to one interception and has a TD and 127 yards on the ground. He's thrown at least one TD pass in every game after Week 1 and appears to be healthy after suffering a hip injury. Even though some of Tennessee's weapons haven't gone off, there are enough playmakers to help Locker keep the chains moving.

Bell has received praise throughout the year in Pittsburgh, but his numbers finally merit regard from fantasy owners after rushing for 93 yards on just 19 attempts versus the Ravens who surrender the least points to fantasy running backs. Just three of those attempts went for no gain or a loss – a breath of fresh air to the Steelers run game. Bell has shaken off an early-season injury and has seemingly won the trust of Mike Tomlin as the workhorse back on a team in desperate need of an offensive identity.

St. Louis hasn't exactly been a haven of offensive firepower this year, but Stacy's solid yet unspectacular performances seem to have won him the starting job in the Rams backfield. He found the endzone through the air on Sunday and has over 85 all-purpose yards in each of his last two games. With Sam Bradford out there aren't many options left to pick up the slack, but Stacy might be the one contributor worth owning.

It was a big week for Douglas and considering he's one of the few healthy weapons at Matt Ryan's disposal, you can expect more production from him. Douglas hauled in seven passes for 149 yards and a touchdown on Sunday and with Julio Jones done for the year and Roddy White's status uncertain, he is at the very least a viable flex option with WR2 upside. The Falcons have run the ball just 115 times – the fewest attempts in the league. Without Steven Jackson, they don't run the ball and so Douglas will continue to receive targets in the foreseeable future.