How will Cam Newton perform @ the Houston Texans and their #4 Pass defense?
Fantasy Question of the Week
We already know that the Texans have arguably the best LB core; Brian Cushing (86 tackles), DeMeco Ryans (120+ Tackle guy when healthy), Conor Barwin (9.5 sacks), and Brooks Reed (6 sackes, Clay Matthews Jr. Jr.). On top of being #4 against the pass (183.5 Y/PG), they are also #3 against the run (91.5 Y/PG). This makes it an automatic benching for Jonathan Stewart, and DeAnglo Williams in fantasy lineups this week. But what about rookie Cam Newton, the #2 overall QB in standard fantasy leagues.
Let’s look at how the Texans D has performed against top notch QBs on the road and at home:
Week 3 @ New Orleans- Drew Brees (31-44) 370 Yards, 3 TD 2 INT.
The Texans held Drew Brees to 0 TDs and 126 yards in the first half, but once Mario Williams left the game with a season ending injury in the 3rd quarter. The defense lost its identity, and Brees lead the Saints to 30 points in the second half, and had an improbable comeback. This game was played in New Orleans, so Brees was due to get his 300 yards. The defense definitely had its way with Drew before the injury, and it was early in the season so the Texans D would only get better with their Wade Phillips system.
Week 4 @ Houston- Ben Roethlisberger (16-30) 206 Yards, 1 INT.
Big Ben had a terrible game, he was sacked 5 times, he completed around 50% of his passes and threw for less than 210 yards. Terrible fantasy game to say the least, especially if the INT counts against you.
Week 13 @ Houston- Matt Ryan (20/47) 267 Yards, 1 TD 2 INT.
Matty Ice managed to put up respectable numbers in leagues where INTs do not count. He was not sacked all game, and threw a little 4 yard TD to Roddy White. This definitely isn’t the type of performance that will win you a playoff matchup in fantasy, but as you can see with the high volume, Ryan’s numbers came. I’m turning the other cheek to his 43% completion percentage.
The best performance any QB had against the Texans this year was Drew Brees hands down. The only other QB to throw for over 300 yards was Joe Flacco back in week 6 with 305. Joe never reached the endzone, and ended up with an INT giving him a marginal fantasy game at best. Fantasy QB’s have been terrible against Houston as they rank #4 vs. Fantasy QBs where INT’s don’t count.
The Texans pass defense is playing so well this season not only because of stars like Daniel Manning and Jonathan Joesph in the secondary. It is because the quality of the QBs the Texans are facing have performed at mediocre levels all season.
Week 14: Andy Dalton
Week 12: Blaine Gabbert
Week 11: Bye
Week 10: Josh Freeman
Week 9: Colt McCoy
Week 8: Blaine Gabbert
Week 7: Matt Hasselbeck
Let’s look at how Cam Newton has performed against top notch Defenses on the road and at home:
Week 4 @ Chicago#14 vs. QBs- Cam Newton (27/46) 374 1 TD 1 INT, 35 Rushing Yards 2 TD.
Cam had a great game against what is now a tough Bears defense. This game, earlier this season made everyone question if the Bears D was old, and not the same unit that everyone was afraid of. In the process Matt Forte ran for over 200 yards, and the Bears defense is back to being elite.
Week 6 @ Atlanta#21 vs. QBs- Cam Newton (21/35) 237 Yards 3 INT, 50 rushing Yards 1 TD.
Cam didn’t put up his typical Cam Newton game, but 20 points in standard leagues is something you can’t complain about. Even in a tough road match, Cam was fantasy relevant.
Week 10 vs. Tennessee#18 vs. QBs- Cam Newton (23/40) 212 Yards 1 INT,55 Rushing Yards.
The Panthers came off their bye, and looked like they have never played football before. Cam was awful, and the Panthers didn’t score a TD. He still managed to put up 13 points which is good for around 20th among fantasy QBs on any given Sunday.
Week 11 @ Detroit#23 vs. QBs- Cam Newton (22/38) 280 1 TD 4 INT, 37 rushing Yards 2 TD.
This was the Kevin Smith game, Kevin had over 200 total yards and 3 TD, but Cam was able to keep pace with performing a huge fantasy game with 3 total TDs, and over 300 total yards. Again Newton proved that he is matchup proof on the road.
Week 14 vs. Atlanta#21 vs. QBs- Cam Newton (19/39) 276 2 TD 2 INT, 36 Rushing Yards.
Cam got his revenge this week against Atlanta and threw what many would consider a good fantasy game. Maybe not on Cam’s level, but a game that nonetheless would leave you satisfied if you started him in fantasy leagues.
The Panthers rank #32 against the run, and the Texans rank #2 running the ball. I expect Arian Foster and Ben Tate to put together a few 6 minutes or longer drives that leave Cam with very little time to have a BIG fantasy impact. I am not ruling out a good performance from Newton this week, but I would start a safer option. In one of my high stakes fantasy leagues, I am benching Cam Newton in favor for Tim Tebow this week. The Broncos will score more points, they will have a longer time of possession than the Panthers, and the Patriots are #32 against the pass. Cam put up great numbers in these games listed above, but the Texans are #4 against the pass. These defenses listed above are not Houston Texans quality D.
My Prediction for Cam Newton this week: (21/35) 246 Yards 1 TD 2 INT, 44 Rushing Yards. = 17 Fantasy Points.
A good game, but not a dominant Cam Newton Game. Good luck in your fantasy matchups this week, and for more Fantasy Articles click below.
*Actual Performance: (13/23) 149 Yards 2 TD, 55 Rush Yards. =18 Fantasy Points.
-Muntradamus is the senior chief editor of MaddenArena.com. He has been playing fantasy sports in high stakes league since 3rd grade. He played varsity sports in HS and studies fantasy sports hours upon hours a day. For questions, or looking for advice sign up for the forums to talk to Muntradamus and all of the Fantasy experts at MaddenArena.