As the fantasy trade deadline approaches, it’s time to start thinking about how to secure a spot in the playoffs. There are sure to be some teams in every league that are either out or nearly out of contention. Those are the teams you want to target for trades. As for players, there are several good trade candidates out there.

Titans running back Chris Johnson has finally broken out, and while one game does not equal a trend, he’s a good candidate for a late-season comeback. Many of his owners are probably out of contention because they hitched their proverbial wagons to him and would be more than happy to ditch him for the right price. Another player to look at is Bills wide receiver Steve Johnson. The Bills are 5-4 and need to fight to stay in contention for the Wild Card. Johnson will be an important weapon in that fight.

I’d also recommend trying to get Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson. He’s been injured and the Texans have a bye week, but when they come back Johnson may be ready to go and QB Matt Schaub will be ecstatic to have his favorite target back. Finally, someone who isn’t named Johnson: Cowboys QB Tony Romo. He’s put together two strong outings in a row and if you need help at QB, you could do much worse. You might also want to look at Ochocinco. He’s still not getting many targets but the totals may indicate that he’s finally getting the hang of his routes.

In anticipation of this week’s column, I presented the following theory to a friend (I’m talking about you, Kait) as a joke, and she suggested I write about it. So, I give you the Names Theory:

According to the Names Theory, you can tell if a player is going to have a successful career simply by looking at his name. See? Stupid. Anyway, this theory can be applied to any sport, but since this is a football column I’ll stick to the NFL.

First: Warren Moon, a former Houston Oilers QB. Warren sounds like a strong, solid name. It sounds proud and tough. Then you add Moon, a word that evokes thoughts of things that are beyond and above us. Is it any wonder that he is one of two people to be enshrined in both the NFL and CFL Halls of Fame? How about Fred Jackson of the Bills? He has a tough, working-class name for a tough, working-class RB.

What about the players who failed? Take former Raiders’ QB JaMarcus Russell. Same goes for Akili Smith, the third pick overall in 1999.

Now, just because I can, I’m going to try to use this theory to predict whether a few current college stars will have great NFL careers. Andrew Luck will. His name is just right. Dre Kirkpatrick will not. He has two first names in his last name. That’s weird. Quinton Coples will. His name is too cool to fail. Only time will tell if I’m right. I probably won’t be.

Daily Nexus staff writer Joshua Greenberg will ride his name into glory for years to come.