Fantasy Post Mortem: What to do with Cam Newton

(Bob Leverone/Associated Press)

Cam Newton is an undroppable in most fantasy leagues, and it’s probably a good thing, too, considering most impetuous fantasy enthusiasts would at least consider dropping him after another disappointing game in Week 5. Like you’re sitting around, drinking a few beers, watching Dexter after the Sunday night game and thinking, “(expletive) it, I’m done with this guy.”

Thankfully, there are safeguards in place to prevent such things. Sort of like the fantasy version of Mayor Bloomberg‘s soda restriction in New York City. Although, I guess we should be able to exercise our own freedoms in our fantasy leagues.

I’ve successfully leveraged Newton away in the NFL AM League. (Michael Fabiano took him off my hands for Wes Welker and Joe Flacco.) But I’ve been accused for sitting the fence on Newton for weeks. That I won’t make a decision. Well, let me be perfectly clear right now … there is no way Newton is going to start for me next week. No possible way!

And before you check, let me confirm, yes, the Panthers are on a bye next week.

I have Andy Luck going in my league of record (against my childhood friends from Corona, Calif.) next week against the New York Jets. I don’t love the matchup, but this is going to be a chance for Luck to show his stuff. Luck has the Browns in two weeks, too. So it looks like I’m going to be able to go with Luck for two weeks.

So here’s the deal, try to deal Newton. Our Matt “Money” Smith was ahead of the curve when he projected Newton as a bust. Newton just isn’t going to be consistent. If you have a good backup (Luck and RG3) give him a chance. But I’m going to shop Newton around, if nobody wants him, I’m probably going to release him. I seriously don’t need the headache anymore.

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Player of the Week
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A number of players were in the running here, Luck, Alex Smith and Ahmad Bradshaw, but the winner this week is Reggie Wayne. There’s just something nostalgic about having Wayne in there. It’s like if you’re listening to Pandora and an awesome song from a few years ago comes on like “Living After Midnight” from Judas Priest. And you just start rocking out like nobody’s business.

That’s what it’s like to have Reggie Wayne back in our lives.

Oh, and Wayne also gets the nod because my buddy Mark D. in my league of record left him on the bench for Jeremy Kerley in his place. I almost don’t blame him because if you follow me at all, you know how I get ruined on Monday night. But that called saved me … at least for a few hours. Seriously, I know it sounds like I’m sandbagging, but I’m legit worried.

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Twitter war
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DeAngelo Williams apparently doesn’t care for fantasy enthusiasts questioning him on Twitter. As you can see following this Twitter exchange.

Yes, those fantasy enthusiasts made a bad move because they started DeAngelo Williams vs. the Seahawks.

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At least he’s not CJ2K
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That’s a good point, through all of Cam Newton’s faults, he’s not Chris Johnson. You kind of expected Johnson to struggle this week against the Vikings, who have been tough on running backs. But this has reached epidemic proportions. And there’s really no chance of him coming back.

Even if Johnson was playing well, the Titans defense is so poor, Tennessee is playing from behind each week and you don’t get a chance to Johnson to get a ton of carries. But what good would more carries do anyway if you’re averaging 1.5 yards per attempt?

I feel for anybody who has Cam or Johnson. Or even worse, can you imagine anybody having both guys?

Oh wow, that’s rough, man.

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Discretion is the better part of valor
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Excuse me for borrowing a phrase from Jim Ross here, but it appeals to Robert Griffin III. If you look at the play which drove him out of the game, RG3 could have slid or at least thrown the ball away. If you watched him play at Baylor, you know this isn’t part of his DNA. But he has to learn or he won’t last the season.

If you’ve been leaning on RG3 this season, you really need an elite backup. Smith and Christian Ponder might be the most attractive free agents next week.

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Road warrior
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Don’t start Joe Flacco on the road. In a Cam Newton-less world, Flacco would be challenging for the most disappointing fantasy quarterback of the week. But Flacco has been just dreadful on the road. Flacco has six touchdown passes in three home games this season. Flacco has only one touchdown pass in two road games.

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Seeing Red
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Red Dalton was supposed to be another great start against the Dolphins, who were torched by Kevin Kolb just a week ago. Dalton, of course, tossed only one touchdown (at least it went to A.J. Green) and had a pair of interceptions. And thankfully, Marvin Lewis took the ball out of Dalton’s hand late in the fourth quarter when he went for a field goal with three minutes left.

Yes, he tried a field goal while down by four points. Uh …

But how can I question Lewis when I picked Newton over Luck this week?

There were a lot of struggling quarterbacks on Sunday. Flacco, Dalton, Ben Roethlisberger and Ryan Tannehill. Oh wait, we’re not lumping RT1 into that class?

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Mendy’s back
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Let’s not just grouse about being ruined in fantasy football, there were some good performances this week, too. Rashard Mendenhall returned and looked great in limited action. Of course, Ben Roethlisberger owners are going to lament the pass/no pass. Wait out the stat correction on that one.

That being said. I lost last week by .10 last week and I instructed my league I would not take a stats correction on Thursday because to me, once the scores have been posted after Monday night’s game, it’s over. Ask Packers fans about that.

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That helps no one!
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And finally …
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There is great concern for Jordy Nelson, and there should be as long as Greg Jennings is out. Nelson thrived as a No. 2 receiver for the Packers, but he’s struggled as the main guy. As I said on Sunday morning’s show, Nelson was going to draw the coverage of the top cornerbacks, leaving guys like James Jones open for more targets and opportunities.

Don’t give up on Nelson just yet (don’t drop him), but temper your expectations. Jones is going to be a great play for a while.

Oh, if you want to give up on Jermichael Finley? I don’t blame you for moving on.

For the record, you can submit your fantasy questions to NFL Fantasy Live, Michael Fabiano or me on Twitter. But realize, NFL Fantasy Live has 70,000 followers, and Fabiano has 60,000. Me? Just 13. See, the odds are better I will answer your question, so hit me up both via Twitter or via Facebook (oh wait, I told you to stop going to Facebook). Go instead to Google+. Also be sure to catch the latest “Dave Dameshek Football Program.”

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