Week 8 in college football will wrap up half the season for many teams, which still means we have another strong half of fantasy contests to participate in at Daily Joust.
As we get deeper into the season, we start to see some tougher match-ups for guys that have led fantasy players to victories in past weeks.
Guys like Johnny Manziel, Tajh Boyd, Nick Florence, and Denard Robinson all face tougher defenses this week and may not be the best options for fantasy.
So here are some great value plays for this week that fantasy enthusiasts should take advantage of for Week 8.
Taylor McHargue, Rice (222k)
McHargue is back in action after missing a big Houston game for the Owls. McHargue’s ability to run and throw well bodes well for his chances this week against a Tulsa defense that’s nothing exciting.
Tulsa is winning a ton of games because of their ability to put up big points week in and week out, but they have really only shut down UTEP, Tulane and Nicholls State.
Shutting down Rice will be a little bit tougher thanks to McHargue.
Matt Scott, Arizona (199k)
Defensively, I think Washington’s defense is improved over last year’s unit. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t capable of giving up 30-40 points to an explosive Arizona offense.
Scott has been exceptional in 2012, and has done a great job of replacing Nick Foles. He can throw the football well, and he can run a bit if need be.
If he can eliminate the turnovers, Scott will have a big game this week in a much needed Pac-12 win after dropping their last three games, all to Pac-12 opponents.
E.J. Manuel, Florida State (180k)
Manuel gets the pleasure of facing a huge in-state rival in Miami (Fl.) this week and he should have a field day.
Not only is Miami’s defense already quite poor, but they are without starting quarterback Stephen Morris offensively, which is likely to lead to more three and outs.
Look for Manuel to take advantage of a weak and tired defense in a big way this week, making him a fool proof investment against the Hurricanes.
D.J. Harper, Boise State (174k)
Fun fact: UNLV is giving up almost three touchdowns per game on the ground. 18 touchdowns in seven games is what UNLV’s rush defense has allowed, and I see Harper having a significant day.
Boise State would be fools to put the ball into the hands of Joe Southwick, and should just rush the ball heavily this week against one of the nations worst defenses.
I’d be surprised if Harper didn’t score two touchdowns and rush for over 100 yards in this one.
LaDarius Perkins, Mississippi State (165k)
Perkins is a legit back that has a lot of potential at the next level, but for now he will get to face a Middle Tennessee State defense that really struggles against the run.
While MTSU has done a reasonable job against some opponents, I’m not so sure that they have faced a back as powerful and strong as Perkins, leading me to believe that he should have a good day.
Tyler Russell will do just well enough to keep the defense backed up this week, while he hands the ball off quite a bit to Perkins.
Zac Stacy, Vanderbilt (129k)
The downside to this pick here is that Auburn has only given up eight touchdowns on the ground all season.
However, Stacy is a powerful speedster that can break off a big run at any time.
Auburn’s defense is giving up almost five yards a carry, and I expect Stacy to lead the Commodore’s in scoring.
Jordan Matthews, Vanderbilt (141k)
If Zac Stacy doesn’t produce this week, then Jordan Matthews will.
For 141k, Matthews is a wise investment against an Auburn pass defense that has given up 10 touchdowns on the season compared to just one interception.
He’s averaging just over 100 yards/game, and the only thing keeping him from being a fantasy staple is getting into the end zone, which should happen this week.
Antavious Wilson, Marshall (123k)
Marshall gets to host Southern Miss this week in what should be a high scoring game on both sides of the ball.
The Herd will be looking to get their first victory on the season, and should have an easier time doing so against an inferior defense that can’t stop the run or the pass.
Wilson is just the third leading receiver for the Herd, but that doesn’t mean that he can’t score against a defense that’s giving up a ton of yardage in the passing games, especially to #2 and #3 receivers.
Sammy Watkins, Clemson (112k)
Despite a tough match-up against Virginia Tech, I expect Clemson to still put up some points, and they will need to rely on Watkins to make plays this week.
I’m only putting Watkins on this list just because it’s only a matter of time until he breaks out, and this is just the game that he needs to against a quality ACC opponent.
Still, Virginia Tech’s defense is not exceptional and will give up big plays. Whether or not one of them to be to Watkins is another story.
Dan Buckner, Arizona (106k)
Buckner is a very underrated receiver with a quarterback in Matt Scott that can deliver the football.
Despite being over shadowed by Austin Hill, it’s not unrealistic to think that Buckner’s 106k salary comes with a lot of promise.
After all, Scott throws the football nearly 50 times a game, and against this Washington secondary, Buckner could be the beneficiary of a few scores.
Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame (72k)
Eifert scored for the first time in four weeks against Stanford in a big game and it’d be silly not to gamble with 72k on arguably the most talented tight end in college football.
The issue here is that the Irish don’t pass as much as I’d like in order to make him a rock solid option.
Still, for the price, Eifert is one of the best risks you can take and he’s one big play away from living up to that 72k price tag.
Travis Tannahill, Kansas State (45k)
Collin Klein does not feel the need to throw the ball heavily, nor should he.
But West Virginia will be seeking a huge rebound after getting absolutely blown away from a Texas Tech team that isn’t really as good as they looked a week ago.
I think the Mountaineers will be putting up big points in this one, with Tannahill being the beneficiary of a few key catches that could really turn the game around for Collin Klein and the Wildcats.
Penn State (64k)
Penn State is 4-2 folks, and they are looking every bit like the Big Ten team they once were.
Despite a struggle defensively by an underrated Northwestern offense, they have been on fire defensively.
Facing Iowa on the road is never a guaranteed victory, but the Hawkeyes offense really is unimpressive, and have only had their biggest games against some of the worst defenses in the NCAA in Central Michigan and Minnesota, with Northern Iowa also being tossed in there.
Texas A&M (77k)
TAMU’s strength has been stopping the run defensively, and they will have to stop the run in order to keep LSU from putting up big numbers.
Of course, LSU’s offense is somewhat of a joke in 2012, especially with Zach Mettenberger starting, but that doesn’t mean they can’t put up points.
I’m thinking that this game could be geared more towards the defensive side of the ball, with both teams struggling to score more than 17-20 points.
Mississippi State (86k)
This is pretty self explanatory. You get a tough SEC defense in Mississippi State against Middle Tennessee State here.
MTSU has improved over the years, but they still have almost nothing on SEC speed and strength.
The Bulldogs defense should have no problems keeping MTSU under 13 points this week.