Fantasy NBA: Player Pickups for The New Year

Friday, 31 December, 2010

By Vidur Malik


Ed Davis – Davis has seen a boost in minutes lately, and an increase in production as well. In the Toronto Raptors’ win over the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday, Davis saw his first extended playing time of the season. He led the Raptors with 17 points and 12 rebounds in 31 minutes. Davis can also contribute a few blocks and steals per game, so he should be able to get you points in a wide range of categories.

Beno Udrih – Udrih is a starter again for the Sacramento Kings, and he’s had a solid year so far. He scores 13.8 points per game, the highest total of his career. He’s also averaging 32 minutes per game for the season, so whether or not he’s starting, he’ll get his opportunities. If your guards aren’t cutting it in terms of scoring, you should seriously consider picking up Udrih.

Wes Johnson – On a struggling team like the Minnesota Timberwolves, Johnson is getting a chance to show his skills. The rookie swingman from Syracuse can be a good scoring guard for your team. The Timberwolves have size, so Johnson doesn’t get many rebounds despite his height advantage over most guards, but he is shooting well from the floor and is an efficient scorer, meaning that he doesn’t need many shots to get you points.

Marvin Williams – Williams is part of a young and athletic Atlanta Hawks team, and has begun his sixth year in the NBA on a good note. He’s shooting 48%, the highest mark of his career in that category, and is putting up 11 points per game with just under five rebounds a game. He’s become a key member of the Hawks, and if they can contend with the elite teams in the league, Williams will have to play a major role. Pick him up if you’re looking for more rebounds and points on a more consistent basis.

Jonny Flynn – Like Johnson, Flynn is a young player getting opportunities on the Timberwolves. Flynn has been making use of the playing time he gets and can be a good pickup if you’re looking for another guard to provide some points. He won’t give you a lot of points or assists if he continues to get the amount of minutes he’s getting now, but if you need more production, it wouldn’t hurt to get him off waivers and see what he can do.

Terrence Williams – Williams has yet to get playing time after being traded to the Houston Rockets, but when he does, he could be another scoring option. Williams also averages 3.6 rebounds a game this year, but that number should increase on a team that doesn’t have a player who averages double-digit rebounds per night. Forward Luis Scola leads the Rockets with 8.4 rebounds a game, so there should be plenty of opportunities for Williams to both score and rebound on his new team.

Shawne Williams- Williams is garnering more playing time every night he continues to produce in limited minutes. His coming out onto the court and adding another deep threat from three for the Knicks. He is currently 19 of 32 from three point range. An astounding 60%. He may be the new Channing Frye in Dantoni’s system.

Fantasy Starters Week Four

Friday, 1 October, 2010

By Vidur Malik

This Sunday’s games could be opportunities for guys who have disappointed so far to have big games. Several of the players on this week’s list have had sub-par seasons, and should have a chance to take advantage of favorable matchups. Others on the list have had surprisingly good seasons so far, and can continue their solid production this weekend.


Matt Ryan – The Atlanta Falcons play the winless San Francisco 49ers in Atlanta this weekend, and Ryan should be able to exploit a defense that has been a huge disappointment so far. Ryan has only one interception so far, and should have a great day against a team that gives up 29 points per game, and is last in the league in that category. Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback Matt Cassel threw for 250 yards and three touchdowns against the 49ers in week three, and Ryan has the weapons and smarts to record similar numbers.

Sam Bradford – The St. Louis Rams’ rookie quarterback has had a solid season so far. He’s got five interceptions to go along with four touchdowns, but if there’s a defense he can pick apart, it’s that of the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks give up over 300 passing yards a game, and San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers three for 455 yards against them last week.

Chad Henne – After last week’s thriller against the New York Jets, the Miami Dolphins play the New England Patriots, another AFC East rival. This should be another nail-biter, and like last week, Henne should have a great game. Henne’s got a great group of wide receivers to throw to, and after Brandon Marshall’s 166 yard, one touchdown game against the Jets, Henne saw what makes him one of the best wideouts in the NFL. Look for Henne to have a big game against a struggling defense.

Wide Receivers

Santana Moss – Moss has become quarterback Donovan McNabb’s favorite target in his first three game as a Washington Redskin. McNabb and the Redskins play the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday, and there’s got to be some extra motivation for McNabb to play well against the team that traded him within the division. Moss should get most of McNabb’s production. He’s still got the speed to get big gains, as his 20.4 yards per catch average against St. Louis last week shows.

James Jones – Jones had a key fumble in the Green Bay Packers’ loss to the Chicago Bears in week three, and is probably looking for redemption this weekend against the Detroit Lions. Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has the talent and weapons to have a huge day against the Lions’ defense, and Jones should have opportunities and good matchups with players like Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, and Jermichael Finley who need to be accounted for. This is a weekend where Jones can become a bigger part of the Packers’ offense.

Roscoe Parrish – The Buffalo Bills are in the midst of a tough season, but could get their first win against the New York Jets. New starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is now the leader, and is going up against a Jets’ defense that has a shaky secondary. The Jets’ cornerbacks have given up big gains, and committed several penalties so far this year.
Parrish should be able to take advantage of that and use his speed to continue leading the Bills in receiving yards.

Running Backs
LaDainian Tomlinson – Tomlinson wasn’t supposed to be the feature back when he got to the New York Jets, but he’s become just that. He leads the team in rushing, and should continue his resurgence against Buffalo. The Bills’ defense gives up 141 rushing yards per game, and Tomlinson should keep up his 5.6 yards per carry average against them.

Ronnie Brown – Brown and the Dolphins should put up a lot of points against the Patriots in week four. Brown may not put up monster rushing numbers, but he can get you a solid amount of yards on the ground and with his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield. He’s a tough runner with a 5.4 yards per carry average, which means points for fantasy owners.

DeAngelo Williams- The New Orleans Saints had trouble stopping the run in their loss to the Atlanta Falcons in week three, and the Carolina Panthers should put an emphasis on the run when they play the defending champs. With his quickness, Williams has the chance to lead the Panthers, who are playing rookie Jimmy Clausen at quarterback. If the Panthers have a shot against the Saints, Williams needs to be heavily involved.

A Raider Receiver Fantasy Worthy

Monday, 31 May, 2010

By Vidur Malik

Last off-season, one of the biggest disappointments around the Bay Area was Raiders wide receiver Chaz Schilens injuring his foot. Schilens looked to be one of the few bright spots for the Raider offense after emerging as a dependable target late in the 2008 season, which made his injury a tough one. After sitting out most of 2009, Schilens had another solid end of the season, putting up 365 yards and two touchdowns.

If he can avoid the foot problems that made him miss most of last year, Schilens can be a dependable fantasy pick. With quarterback Jason Campbell coming in, Schilens should have an accurate quarterback throwing him passes, and with other consistent players complementing him, he should have opportunities to make plays.

Fellow wide receiver Louis Murphy put up over 500 yards and four touchdowns last year, and if he can improve those numbers, Schilens should be able to either be a solid number two receiver, or compete for the number one spot. Johnnie Lee-Higgins is a threat on offense and special teams, and could be a deep threat for the team. Darrius Heyward-Bey had a disappointing rookie year, but if he can use his speed to be another playmaker, the offense should have a good amount of weapons.

Schilens should benefit from being a bigger target in a speedy receiving corps. While most of the other Raider playmakers are dangerous because of their speed, Schilens is a powerful receiver, who can run short and intermediate routes while the other receivers go over the top. On the ground, Darren McFadden has yet to become the game breaker he was in college, but Michael Bush and Justin Fargas are bruisers who can both put up 500-600 yards and a few touchdowns each. Both are consistent runners who have had multiple productive seasons, and they should continue producing. If Campbell can give the offense any consistency at all, it will be an improvement from the JaMarcus Russell years. Bruce Gradkowski led the team to some wins last year, and can be another option as well.

If the Raiders can stay healthy, they might be able to improve from their recent struggles on offense. It will be a long time before they get the consistency and character that an organization needs to be successful, but several players could have breakout seasons this year. Their recent draft picks have been questionable, but bringing in Campbell was a smart move. If he can become the reliable leader the Raiders need, look for Schilens to have a good year. If he can be on the field for most of the season, a 1,000 yard year might not be out of the question.