Five NFL hot shots you need to jettison from your fantasy squad

NFL Referees
NFL Referees (CC by 4.0) by Keith Allison

It came as something of a surprise this weekend to see that week eleven of the NFL was already upon us – where have those weeks gone? Of course, for anyone with a fantasy team, the playoffs are even closer than in real life. With a couple of weeks to go, many of us are in that all too familiar “all or nothing” struggle to make it over the line and into the postseason.

It is tempting at this stage to become superstitious and adopt the “don’t touch anything now” approach, but to stand the best chance, this is really the moment when you need to step back and reassess what is going to work best to get instant results.

Gambling it all on a playoff berth

When we get to this point in the season, it becomes a tunnel-visioned quest to make the playoffs. What came before is forgotten, and what will come afterwards is to be considered later. While fans study the odds at online sports betting and casino sites like the ones at, team owners and head coaches are making tough decisions based on the here and now.

You need to do the same with your fantasy team. Remember, that playoff berth is all that matters, so it is time to get ruthless and cull some big names. Here are some stars who might have been logical choices at the start of the season, and might become so again next year, but will only be dragging you down right now.

1) Theo Riddick

A perfect example of a player that fantasy owners hang on to because he is “sure to come good.” The fact is, the Lions running back has only really come up with the goods once in the past nine weeks. It is time to make space.

2) CJ Anderson

Another RB who always promises much but in fantasy terms is something of a liability. Sure, he scored a great touchdown last week against the Bengals, but when was the last time he was in the end zone before that? Answer – it was back in week 3.

3) Hunter Henry

A good tight end can pay great dividends in a fantasy league. Make no mistake, Henry has talent by the ton, and is a favourite among fantasy owners. The truth is, though, he’s just not produced this year, and now is the time to admit he’s not going to.

4) Jordy Nelson

A controversial choice, perhaps. He’s certainly a receiver of rare quality, but from the moment Aaron Rogers was sidelined with a broken collarbone, the writing was on the wall. Five weeks on, it is painfully clear that Hundley / Nelson is never going to be Montana / Rice.

5) Jordan Matthews

The Bills are quietly imploding, but even if the quarterback situation had never happened, Matthews has slipped ever further down the pecking order over the past few weeks. Question marks over his fitness mean he could spend even more time on the bench in forthcoming games.