Finally Matt Stafford! And while the Detroit signalcaller has clawed his way out of the fantasy doghouse, Calvin Johnson is still sipping from the bowl. But it was Stafford's discovery of Titus Young in the wake of the Nate Burleson injury as well as Brandon Pettigrew as downfield threats. Plus he did his damage against a formidable Seahawk defense that has one of the best secondaries in the NFL. He finished the day with 352 yards, 3 touchdowns passing and one snuck in a shocking shootout with Russell Wilson
Honorable Mention: Tom Brady
It's amazing how an ALL Pro Quarterback has a day off like he did last week and everyone is all up in arms. Well reality is restored because Brady just annihilated Saint Louis on English soil. A clean pocket and some precise throws added up to 4 touchdowns passing and just barely over 300 yards. He hardly even noticed an injury to Wes Welker, his security blanket - but that will need to be monitored going forward.
Goat: Eli Manning
Was it just me of did the camera seem to love showing crazy haired Eli on the sidelines as he watched Romo's almost comeback. Manning simply wasn't really needed in this one and that surely leads to fantasy disappointment. With a huge lead opened up early, all the Giants needed to do was run the football and play good defense and they did just barely that. But no touchdowns a pick and under 200 yards is hardly the production you want for your fantasy team, especially when some scrub of a backup like Alex Smith probably could have done you better.
Top Scorer: Doug Martin
If you had the Buccaneer rookie this week, your team jumped out to a gigantic Thursday night lead surely and all you had to do was manage your fantasy game. I barely still won in the CBS league I owned him in because of goat Eli. But back to Martin who did his damage against the NFL's 3rd ranked run defense coming in. He finished his best day as a pro with 214 total yards and two touchdowns, his long 50+ receiving touchdown was a strange eye trick as he appeared to burst through a seam like you had hit a button in Madden.
Honorable Mention: Willis McGahee / Trent Richardson / Stevan Ridley
Willis McGahee overcame an early costly fumble to score oagainst the hapless Saints defense and finish with more than 150 total yards. Trent Richardson deserves a big honorable mention just because it was unsure how many carries he would get. And Stevan Ridley continues his tear as he keys a strong Patriot running game. He also surpassed 120 yards on the ground with a score and was pulled in the second half so he could have done more.
Goat: Jamaal Charles / Steven Jackson
Jamaal Charles has been succeeding despite big deficits and 8 man fronts up to this point this year. But he got something like only 4 carries which is more mindbaffling than his 10 total yards stat line. Steven Jackson meanwhile could very well be trade bait. You can try and convince me that rookie Daryl Richardson is a better 3rd down back and therefore deserved to be on the field more while trailing but still don't be stunned if Steven is in a Green Bay Jersey by the end of the week.
Top Scorer: Titus Young
This has to burn all Calvin Johnson earners. I own him in at least half my leagues so I'm singed. Last year Titus Young was transparent until December. Now we can thank the unfortunate nature of a Nate Burleson season ending injury for all the single coverage for Titus and he made the Seahawks pay. 9 catches for 100 yards and two touchdowns, one of which a big bomb downfield. He's a must pick up in fantasy leagues this year.
Honorable Mention: Julio Jones / Michael Crabtree
Julio Jones helped all the Matt Ryan grass naysayers (like myself) and his long touchdown was a thing of concentration and beauty. He finished with 5 catches for 123 yards. With Harry Douglas missing plenty of time it will be up to the studs to see even more targets. And Michael Crabtree had one of those seldom games where he looked like a first rounder again. His first touchdown was all hands and muscle as Patrick Peterson was all over him, and his second was an ankle breaker again courtesy of one of the best young corners in football. I wasn't expecting that.
Victor Cruz / Roddy White
This was a bad week for receivers and most of the top draft picks underperformed. Among them the Salsa dancer. Playing against Brandon Carr he was shut down for one of the few times this year and had his worst game of the year with only two catches for 23 yards. Did you know he only makes half a mill playing in the final year of his rookie contract? Look for him to get paid. Meanwhile Roddy White just wasn't needed with such a big lead. He had a pedestrian 3 catches for 38 yards.
Top Scorer: Rob Gronkowski
The Gronk is getting into a 2011 type groove as he recorded a multi touchdown game and was the deciding difference in a blowout of Saint Louis. His 8 catches and 146 yards are a thing of beauty and he's putting up the wide receiver No.1 numbers everyone who drafted him late in the first or second round had hoped. Stud city.
Honorable Mention: Jason Witten
Jason Witten set an NFL record with a whopping 18 catches in a single game as Romo clearly intended to kill the only set of sure hands on his team. He doesn't get top scoring status as a Hero though because he failed to score. Backup John Phillips vultured a touchdown but in a points per reception league I'm sure you didn't mind. He finished with 167 yards receiving.
Goat: Aaron Hernandez / Antonio Gates
Hopefully you checked my walking wounded list before kickoff as you would have learned that Hernandez didn't even make the flight to London. Sort of a cop out calling him a goat but if you owned him you probably planned on starting him. Antonio Gates meanwhile rebounded a great two touchdown performance with a two catch 14 yard performance. Is the Cleveland defense really that good?DEF:
Top Scorer: Miami Dolphins
This is usually reserved for the best scoring Defensive unit which the Dolphins certainly smothered a hapless Mark Sanchez. But really is was the special teams that was the star of this game. They blocked two kicks - one returned for a touchdown in addition to a defensive touchdown and plenty of return yards. They also finished with 4 sacks and two turnovers.
Honorable Mention: Giants / Green Bay / San Francisco
The Giants get helped out by that incredible pick six score from Jason Pierre Paul as well as a generous Tony Romo who gave away 4 sacks and 4 picks alongside 2 coughed up fumbles. The Packers needed their blocked punt touchdown to put away the surprising Jaguars. And the 49ers dominated as usual against against their division foe limiting Arizona to a field goal 265 total yards of offense and 4 sacks with a pick.