Overvalued Players - Week 12
By Jeff Tefertiller
November 23rd, 2011

This article will take a weekly look at players who are overvalued in a given week. Negative value is when a player offers more long-term value than he does for this week. The basis for this value will be the difference between the Top 200 forward, a look at the top 200 players with the whole season in mind, and the weekly rankings. Both of these are from the Footballguys.com subscriber content. An emphasis will be on the players with the largest differences between the season outlook and this week only. Also, a preference will be given to differences for the higher ranked players. Some of these differences will be due to injury, matchup of the week, or short-term situation. Now, let's take a look at this week's negative value players.

Quarterback

Tom Brady

  • Top 250 ranking: 3
  • Weekly ranking: 7
  • Difference: -4
  • The Patriots travel to Philadelphia to meet the desperate Eagles this week. The Philadelphia defense played very well against New York last week and will try to do the same versus Brady and company. The Eagles have talented cornerbacks and will rely on them as they bring blitzes. While it is not wise to bench the Patriot passer, this may not be the week to expect a big fantasy game.

    Ben Roethlisberger

  • Top 250 ranking: 5
  • Weekly ranking: 10
  • Difference: -5
  • The Steelers are coming off the bye week and heading to Kansas City for what looks like a soft win. But, it may not be that simple. The Chiefs played inspired ball in New England last week and will give the Steelers a fight. The fantasy outlook for "Big Ben" is not great, either. He has a broken thumb which might lead to more emphasis placed on the running game and less on Roethlisberger's arm. If Pittsburgh can jump out to a lead, there could be few second half pass attempts. This is not the week to expect a big fantasy game from the Steeler quarterback.

    Running Back

    Ray Rice

  • Top 250 ranking: 4
  • Weekly ranking: 11
  • Difference: -7
  • Rice has been a fantasy factor most weeks with his ability as a receiver as well as a runner. Baltimore will have a tough matchup against the stout San Francisco defense this week. The 49ers do not give up much yardage on the ground and force teams into low-scoring games. We would never advise sitting Rice. This week is no different. But, fantasy owners should not expect another huge fantasy game like last week.

    Darren Sproles

  • Top 250 ranking: 10
  • Weekly ranking: 28
  • Difference: -18
  • The Saints host the Giants in what looks to be a hard-fought matchup of potential NFC contenders. The improved play of Pierre Thomas and the return of Mark Ingram back to full strength could limit Sproles' workload. The speed of the New York defense will limit the big play ability of the diminutive ex-Charger. The Top 250 ranking shows the continued love we have for Sproles, but expectations are tempered this week.

    Fred Jackson

  • Top 250 ranking: 11
  • Weekly ranking: 20
  • Difference: -9
  • Jackson did not play much against the Dolphins last week. He left the game early with an injury and did not return. It is too early to know if, or how much, Jackson will play against the New York Jets this week. The New York defense is strong against the run and will be tough to run on. The Buffalo offense is in a tailspin, and this will only hurt Jackson's upside until rectified.

    Wide Receiver

    Steve Smith

  • Top 250 ranking: 5
  • Weekly ranking: 13
  • Difference: -8
  • The Panthers travel to Indianapolis to meet the Colts this week. The Colt pass defense struggles against the bigger receivers, but possesses the speed to hang with Smith. Also, the pass rush of Indianapolis may not give Cam Newton enough time to hit Smith deep down the field. He is still a good fantasy starter at WR13, just without the upside of many weeks.

    Marques Colston

  • Top 250 ranking: 18
  • Weekly ranking: 28
  • Difference: -10
  • Colston and the New Orleans offense is coming off a much-needed bye week. The game against the Giants this week will be a big test for the Saints. Against the Eagles last week, it was the New York offense that disappointed while the defense held the speedy Philadelphia receivers in check for most of the game. Fantasy owners never know which week Colston will explode with a big game, so it makes him tough to sit. But, this is a touch matchup for the New Orleans passing attack.

    Michael Crabtree

  • Top 250 ranking: 25
  • Weekly ranking: 36
  • Difference: -11
  • Fantasy owners eyeballing Crabtree's recent success, especially last week against Arizona, should not be hopeful this week. San Francisco faces the very good Baltimore defense in a game that will be difficult for the 49er skill position players. The Raven pass defense is always strong and should have no problem against Alex Smith and his weak cast of wide receivers. The Harbaugh vs. Harbaugh matchup looks to be low scoring.

    Tight End

    Aaron Hernandez

  • Top 250 ranking: 5
  • Weekly ranking: 22
  • Difference: -17
  • Hernandez is the third option for quarterback Tom Brady. He is still able to put up fantasy numbers many weeks. The game against the Eagles this coming weekend may be difficult for the athletic tight end. He is a star in the making, but this could be a tough week for fantasy owners.

    Jermichael Finley

  • Top 250 ranking: 4
  • Weekly ranking: 8
  • Difference: -4
  • Finley is as talented as any tight end in the NFL. His speed and agility allow the Packers to line him up all over the formation. Green Bay faces the upstart Detroit defense on Thanksgiving in a game that may be decided by which team runs the ball better. Also, opposing defenses have been taking away Finley and making the receivers win their respective matchups. Given the undefeated Packer record, this has not been an issue. Finley is still a starter this week. But, the game could be close and lower scoring than normal Green Bay contests.

    Kicker

    David Akers

  • Top 250 ranking: 3
  • Weekly ranking: 23
  • Difference: -20
  • Akers was a big signing for Harbaugh and the 49ers. He has given the team strong veteran leadership. The game against the Ravens on Thanksgiving will be low scoring with not many opportunities for Akers to score. Few San Francisco offensive players will be options this week for fantasy owners.

    Dan Bailey

  • Top 250 ranking: 4
  • Weekly ranking: 19
  • Difference: -15
  • The Cowboys may have a tougher time against the Dolphins than most realize. Miami brings in a winning streak and is improved. Opposing kickers have not scored well against the Dolphins and this trend could continue again this week.

    Defense

    New York Jets

  • Top 250 ranking: 4
  • Weekly ranking: 20
  • Difference: -16
  • The Jets defense is still very talented, even with the .500 record. The game against the Buffalo Bills this week will not be conducive for turnovers and sacks. Even though he is not playing well, Buffalo passer Ryan Fitzpatrick does not throw many picks or take many sacks. There are better options on the waiver wire this week.

    Arizona Cardinals

  • Top 250 ranking: 8
  • Weekly ranking: 25
  • Difference: -17
  • The Cardinals defense has been solid for fantasy owners this season, even with the poor play by the offense. With Sam Bradford back under center, the game against the Saint Louis Rams will not yield many turnovers or sacks. The Rams will want to run through the swiss cheese Cardinal defense. This is not a week to expect Arizona to put up points on the defensive side of the ball.

    Please feel free to email me at tefertiller@footballguys.com with any questions or comments. Also, I am on Twitter, so feel free to ask me questions there.

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