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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Free Agent Forecast - Week 3
Paul Sandy
September 21, 2004

QUARTERBACKS

1. David Carr, Texans

Last Week’s Stats

23 comp.

34 att.

313 yds.

2 TDs

30 rush yds.

Breakout Performer

After a poor opening game against the Chargers, David Carr looked a bit more comfortable Sunday on the road in Detroit. Carr threw for more than 300 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He should have little difficulty dissecting the laughable Kansas City Chiefs defense this week. One of Carr’s strengths is hitting RB Dominick Davis on outlet passes. Those short dinks and dunks should add up over the course of this week’s game and Carr should post 200+ yards and a pair of scores. Three consecutive weeks versus sub-par or average defenses earn Carr the top ranking this week.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@KC

OAK

MIN

@TEN

BYE


2. Kurt Warner, Giants

Last Week’s Stats

22 comp.

33 att.

232 yds.

1 TD

0 rush yds.

Breakout Performer

Many owners are hesitant to put Warner on their roster – myself included. It’s difficult to erase the last two season’s of Warner’s career from my memory. That said, the former MVP has shown hints that he still has a little game left. He made good decisions Sunday against the Redskins and put his team in a position to win. While his fantasy stats weren’t anything to write home about, let’s face it, quarterbacks haven’t exactly been lighting up the fantasy scoreboards this season. If you’ve been living with the lackluster performances of guys like Favre and Green, Warner could be the sparkplug you’re looking for.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

CLE

@GB

@DAL

BYE

DET


3. Joey Harrington, Lions

Last Week’s Stats

18 comp.

25 att.

176 yds.

3 TDs

17 rush yds.

Breakout Performer

Harrington has struggled with consistency throughout his career. One week he’ll toss three touchdowns. The next, he’ll have a huge letdown. But something tells me the roller coaster ride may be coming to an end. Roy Williams is the early frontrunner for rookie of the year honors. He provides Harrington with a big, talented target. Look for Harrington to approach 20 passing touchdowns this season under the continued tutelage of Steve Marriucci. He’ll be an adequate backup QB from here on out.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

PHI

BYE

@ATL

GB

@NYG

One Week Wonders: None

RUNNING BACKS

1. Aaron Stecker, Saints

Last Week’s Stats

15 car.

41 yds.

6 rec.

19 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

Saints RB Deuce McAllister suffered a high ankle sprain Sunday in what was a bloody week for starting running backs. McAllister will miss 4-5 weeks and is expected to be replaced by Aaron Stecker. The former Tampa Bay Buc is a speedy, slasher-type ball carrier, who doesn’t exactly fit the mold of a starting NFL running back. If the coaching staff doesn’t think Stecker can carry the full load, they will likely bring in Ki-Jana Carter. Even if they do bring in Carter, Stecker should fare well splitting carries against some weak defenses in upcoming games.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@STL

@ARZ

TAM

MIN

@OAK


2. Dominic Rhodes, Colts

Last Week’s Stats

0 car.

0 yds.

0 rec.

0 yds.

0 TD

Breakout Performer

 

Edgerrin James will be listed as doubtful this week against Green Bay with a hamstring strain. If Stecker is the top free agent RB available, Rhodes is 1A. In fact, if you’re in a situation where you’re happy with your top two backs and just need a one-week replacement, Rhodes is your guy. He will face a Green Bay Packers defense that just got shredded by Chicago’s Thomas Jones. The Packers are noticeably weak without run stuffer Grady Jackson and have historically struggled against backup running backs. Rhodes should easily go over 100 yards if he gets the start.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

GB

@JAX

OAK

BYE

JAX


3. ReShard Lee, Cowboys

Last Week’s Stats

4 car.

15 yds.

0 rec.

0 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

With Julius Jones expected to miss considerable time with a broken shoulder, the Cowboys offense is down to Eddie George, ReShard Lee and Richie Anderson for ball carriers. George will get most of the work, with Lee occasionally spelling him. However, George’s age and lack of productivity mean have him vulnerable to a benching at any time. Head coach Bill Parcells gave him a quick hook in Week 1 and inserted Lee. He could do the same in the coming weeks. Acquire the second-year back as a back-up with potential.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

@WAS

BYE

NYG

PIT

@GB


4. Michael Pittman, Buccaneers

Last Week’s Stats

0 car.

0 yds.

0 rec.

0 yds.

0 TD

Breakout Performer

 

If you’ve been studying your waiver wire and things are looking pretty bleak on the running back front, consider acquiring Michael Pittman. Tampa has not scored a single touchdown on offense this year. Whatever they’re doing isn’t working. That should leave the door wide open for Michael Pittman to step into a prominent role in the offense when he returns from his suspension on September 26, in time to get ready for Week 4. Acquire him this week in preparation for his return. At the very least, fantasy owners can pencil Pittman in for 5-6 receptions per game to go along with 10 rushes.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

SUSP.

DEN

@NO

@STL

CHI


5. Derrick Blaylock, Chiefs

Last Week’s Stats

3 car.

13 yds.

1 rec.

5 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

Priest Holmes is expected to be listed as questionable with an ankle sprain. Says Dick Vermiel regarding Holmes’ situation, “ I talked to him and was concerned about his knee because I saw him get it bent back. But it turned out this morning that his ankle was a little sore as the end result. It’s nothing serious but it may cost him to miss some time during the week…hopefully, not the ballgame.” Better safe than sorry i f you’re a Holmes owner. Acquire Blaylock as a precaution. He’s currently listed as #2 on the KC depth chart, ahead of Larry Johnson.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

HOU

@BAL

BYE

@JAX

ATL


6. James Jackson, Browns

Last Week’s Stats

3 car.

50 yds.

1 rec.

1 yd.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

The Cleveland running attack has been stagnant in the first two weeks of the 2004 NFL season. William Green is averaging less the three yards per carry. Lee Suggs, who was supposed to be the starter, hasn’t played a game yet this season due to a stinger. Rumors were swirling a couple weeks ago that Suggs’ injury might be more serious that first believed. Those rumors were put to rest by head coach Butch Davis. However, Davis is still concerned that Suggs might not be able to hold onto the ball effectively. If those fears linger, Jackson could see more playing time. He’s worth an acquisition in deeper leagues.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

@NYG

WAS

@PIT

CIN

PHI


7. Josh Scobey, Cardinals

Last Week’s Stats

0 car.

0 yds.

1 rec.

42 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

If the first two weeks of the season are any indication, this is going to be a grueling season for NFL running backs. The injuries are already adding up. That puts a premium on back-up RBs who have a good chance to see playing time. At the top of the list has to be Josh Scobey, who is behind the aged veteran Emmitt Smith on the Arizona depth chart. Emmitt is 35. At that age, injuries are more prevalent and take longer to heal. If you have a roster spot that you can dedicate to a long-term project, consider acquiring Scobey. He’s looked good in limited action this season, as has the offensive line.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

@ATL

NO

@SF

BYE

SEA

One Week Wonders: None

WIDE RECEIVERS

1. Donte’ Stallworth, Saints

Last Week’s Stats

9 rec.

113 yards

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

Prior to the season, Stallworth was one of those third-year wideouts that many fantasy owners had pegged for a breakout season. But after opening the year with a 36-yard game against the Seahawks, owners with an itchy trigger finger may have dumped Stallworth, figuring he’d reverted back to his underachieving ways. He put those notions to rest posting 113 yards Sunday. Look for Stallworth to follow it up with more solid efforts. He has favorable match-ups four of the next five weeks.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@STL

@ARZ

TAM

MIN

@OAK


2. Terry Glenn, Cowboys

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

90 yards

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Glenn had some big games last season, but he was a bit erratic. As a result, he went un-drafted in many leagues. If he’s available, consider making him your #4 or, if you’re desperate, your #3 WR. Glenn opened up the season with two consecutive strong fantasy performances. Try as they might, the Cowboys just aren’t looking like a run-first team. Adding injury to insult, rookie RB Julius Jones broke his shoulder blade this week and will miss significant time. As a result, Dallas will likely be forced into more game plans that revolve around the passing game. Glenn owners will be benefactors.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@WAS

BYE

NYG

PIT

@GB


3. Tyrone Calico, Titans

Last Week’s Stats

0 rec.

0 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

 

Last week, there were some murmurs that Calico might be ready to play in Week 2. Those reports were a bit premature and the Titans ended up declaring Calico inactive for the game. However, his recovery from two knee sprains appears to be on schedule, if not ahead of schedule. Look for him to get work this week or next week at the latest. Calico was sharp during the preseason and could become a fantasy force if the Titans offense gets rolling. He is a particularly attractive acquisition if one of your receivers is on bye in Weeks 6 or 7 – both are slam dunk match-ups for the Titans passing game.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

JAX

@SD

@GB

HOU

@MIN


4. Kevin Johnson, Ravens

Last Week’s Stats

4 rec.

86 yds.

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

 

Travis Taylor is hurt. Todd Heap is hurt. Someone has to catch passes in this offense. Johnson is clearly the most likely candidate. When the top receiver on any team is available on your waiver wire, he’s probably worthy of an acquisition – even if it is the top receiver for Baltimore. If Johnson is to have a good game, he’ll need his quarterback to step up and play some good football. Kyle Boller has been atrocious in his first two games. But his career best game came last season against the Bengals – 302 yards passing and two touchdowns. While it’d be asking a lot for a repeat performance, there’s a good chance he’ll hook up with Johnson for at least 5-6 passes.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@CIN

KC

@WAS

BYE

BUF


5. Reche Caldwell, Chargers

Last Week’s Stats

4 rec.

67 yds

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

Caldwell was a popular sleeper in 2003, but fell out of favor with fantasy owners due to inconsistency at the quarterback position. He has scored touchdowns on consecutive weeks, but questions still remain about whether Drew Brees can be a quality starting quarterback at this level. Acquire him this week if you’re not in a position to acquire any of the other listed wideouts. Caldwell would rank higher, but a difficult schedule could cause some inconsistency in the coming weeks.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

 

Spot Starter

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

@DEN

TEN

JAC

@ATL

@CAR

One Week Wonders: Curtis Conway, Tim Carter, Johnnie Morton and Corey Bradford

TIGHT ENDS

1. Daniel Graham, Patriots

Last Week’s Stats

8 rec.

123 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

We’re just two weeks into the season and Daniel Graham already has three touchdown receptions. If you’ve been disappointed in your TE play, Graham would make an excellent acquisition. It’s important to note that the Patriots are on bye this week. Many owners prefer to only keep one TE on their roster at any given time. However, consider making Graham the exception to the rule. He might be worth it because he’s New England’s first red-zone option.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

BYE

@BUF

MIA

SEA

NYJ


2. Eric Johnson, 49ers

Last Week’s Stats

5 rec.

60 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

John son is the #2 tight end in the NFL with 13 receptions. He opened the season with eight grabs and a touchdown, and then followed it up last week with another solid 60-yard performance. Johnson has been San Francisco’s most reliable receiver so far. Acquire him this week and don’t be afraid to plug him into your lineup regardless of the opponent.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

 

@SEA

STL

ARZ

@NYJ

BYE

One Week Wonders: Kris Mangum

DEFENSES / SPECIAL TEAMS

Seattle Seahawks

Last Week’s Stats

2 FR

2 INTs

5 Sacks

6 PA

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

Seattle has allowed a league-best 6.5 points per game. They rank second in the AFC with seven sacks. They’ve intercepted three passes and forced four fumbles, ranking near the top in both categories. The only area they haven’t delivered for fantasy owners is that they haven’t scored a touchdown. It’s just a matter of time and it could happen this week against the 49ers who continue to start the inexperience Ken Dorsey.

Short-Term Injury Replacement

 

Long-Term Injury Replacement

 

Depth Chart Climber

 

Weekly Starter

Spot Starter

 

Keeper League Prospect

 

Available In Small Leagues Only

 

Upcoming Opponents

Favorable Match-Up Next Week

SF

BYE

STL

@NE

@ARZ

One Week Wonders: New York Giants