Heading into Week 5: One for the Money, Two for the Show, and Three to Let Go!
Let me begin, with a little postscript to a previous entry…
For the record, I’m Gonna Git U did, indeed, get me. Thankfully, QB Shaun Hill performed pretty well, but my team was no match for Eli Manning and Mike Sims-Walker (funny how that worked out this week). While this didn’t surprise me too much, I did have a few other OMG moments over the weekend. They’ve helped to inspire a new segment I’d like to call… One for the Money, Two for the Show, and Three to Let Go!
This week Rashard Mendenhall was, as Mike from Swingers would say, “so f*cking money.” Starting in place of the turf toed Willie Parker, Mendenhall carried 29 times for a career-high 165 yards, caught two receptions for 26 yards, and scored two TDs. Yup, that’s money baby. And, let me add, about time too.
I’ve had my eye on this kid for awhile. He’s from Chicago, played at U of I, and even had lunch with Lovie Smith after running a 4.45 forty-yard dash at the 2008 NFL Scouting Combine. Naturally, I had high hopes for him. But last season he was utterly disappointing – finishing his rookie season with a shoulder injury and only 58 rushing yards on 19 carries.
It seems in ’09, however, that Mendenhall has turned it around. Look for him to be huge in Week 5 against the Lions. There is a slight chance that Willie Parker could share carries, but I highly doubt Mike Tomlin would risk playing the Pro Bowler if he isn’t 100% healthy. Either way, I’d bank on Mendenhall to bring the benjamins.
Last Sunday, Hakeem Nicks emerged from the shadows of the Meadowlands and began to show signs of possible greatness. The rookie out of North Carolina, took a screen pass for 54 yards, scoring his first pro TD and dancing around a few defenders along the way.
Ever since Plaxico Buress traded big blue for inmate orange, the NY Giants have been assessing their options and examining the alternatives. The organization clearly believed Nicks had “NFL potential,” signing him to a five-year, $12.54 million contract this past August.
While Eli Manning has tapped Steve Smith as his number one receiver, there still remains some competition for the number two spot. Mario Manningham, who is currently starting opposite Smith, has been dropping balls and looking unsteady. In my opinion, if Nicks can turn his shots into breaks then there’s a real chance for him to move up in the depth chart. Don’t jump on this noob just yet, but do keep an eye on him. He might just end up putting on one hell of a show.
To Let Go:
For some reason, Michael Bush has appeared on a few fantasy “watch” lists. Em, really? We’re talking about the Raider’s number two (maybe three?) running back, right? The one who on Sunday had a laughable three carries for just 10 yards? The same guy who in that same game lost a fumble, contributing to Oakland’s 6 – 29 loss to Houston? I’m supposed to “watch” him? Watch him do what? Rack up negative yardage and hand my opponent the championship plaque? No thanks.
I understand that with Darren McFadden sidelined due to a torn meniscus, Bush might just maybe see more carries. However, he’s also going to have to share those carries, at least in some capacity, with Justin Fargas. AND the Raiders have a pretty tough defensive schedule in the coming weeks, facing off against the Giants next week and the Eagles the week after that.
Ultimately, this has less to do with Bush and more to do with the team he’s playing for. From their bloated QB to their punchy head coach, Oakland is all sorts of effed up. My advice is to simply stay away from the Raider Nation. Like a fat kid reaching for a second piece of cake, sometimes you just have to let go.