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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Free Agent Forecast - Week 7
Paul Sandy
October 19, 2004

QUARTERBACKS

Obvious acquisitions: Ben Roethlisberger and Tim Rattay

1. Jake Plummer, Broncos

Last Week’s Stats

11 comp.

20 att.

190 yds.

3 TDs

15 rush yds.

Breakout Performer

Plummer is notoriously inconsistent, but he’s worth an acquisition this week. The former Cardinals QB tossed three touchdown passes Sunday and he’s looking much more confident with a reinvigorated running game. He should see even more success in the coming weeks because he has a tremendously favorable upcoming schedule. I consider him a lock for another multiple touchdown game this week against the Bengals, who seem to have reverted to their losing ways.

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

ATL

HOU

BYE

@NO


2. Brian Griese, Buccaneers

Last Week’s Stats

27 comp.

40 att.

286 yds.

2 TDs

1 rush. yd.

Breakout Performer

Griese was recommended here last week as a one-week replacement for owners with bye week issues. As predicted, he delivered a pair of touchdowns and some decent yardage. While Tampa’s offense has appeared to turn the corner the last two weeks with Griese under center, I’d suggest owners continue using the former Denver QB as a spot starter only. His career has been full of ups and downs. That said, his match-up against the Chiefs in Week 9 looks like a winner.

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

 

CHI

BYE

KC

@ATL

SF


3. Jon Kitna, Bengals

Last Week’s Stats

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

Breakout Performer

 

Entering the season, the Bengals were supposed to be a team that was going to compete for a division title. Carson Palmer started out the year looking capable of leading this team to its first playoff birth in an eternity. Since then, he seems to have lost a little bit of confidence and Cincinnati’s record shows it. The local media are starting to press head coach Marvin Lewis to make a change at the starting QB position. Publicly, Lewis has shown no signs of budging, but continued struggles could force his hand. As a starter, Kitna would quickly become a viable fantasy QB for any team that has been lacking consistency at the position. Acquire him this week to get a jump on your league.

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

DAL

@WAS

PIT

One Week Wonders: None

RUNNING BACKS

Obvious acquisitions: Reuben Droughns, Willis McGahee and Mewelde Moore

1. Antowain Smith, Titans

Last Week’s Stats

4 car.

16 yds.

1 rec.

5 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

Tennessee starting tailback Chris Brown got injured at an inopportune time for his owners. The Titans are approaching a stretch of their schedule that’s favorable for the running game. That makes journeyman Antowain Smith a valuable acquisition on this week’s waiver wire. As of Monday, head coach Jeff Fisher said he was unclear about Brown’s playing status, but hinted that if there was nerve damage, the running back could miss time. Grab Smith as a precaution and don’t be afraid to use him in the coming weeks, especially against the Bengals, who rate dead last in run defense.

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

@MIN

CIN

BYE

CHI

@JAC


2. William Green, Browns

Last Week’s Stats

25 car.

115 yds.

1 rec.

0 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

When Lee Suggs returned from a shoulder injury a couple weeks ago, much of the fantasy world figured it was the end of William Green. But for whatever reason, Browns head coach Butch Davis continues to favor Green over Suggs. Green took advantage of another starting opportunity Sunday when he pounded the Bengals for 100+ yards. Suggs also had a good game, but he had a costly fumble. If Green continues to get the starting nod, he has value in all leagues. Pick him up if he was dropped in your league.

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

@BAL

PIT

NYJ


3. Sammy Morris, Dolphins

Last Week’s Stats

18 car.

91 yds

2 rec.

21 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

It’s getting redundant to see a Miami running back listed here, but eventually one of these guys has to settle into the starting role. Right? Take a chance on Morris as he looked like a tough runner against a respectable Bills defense Sunday.

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

@NYJ

ARZ

BYE

@SEA


4. Richie Anderson, Cowboys

Last Week’s Stats

6 car.

54 yds.

3 rec.

18 yds.

1 TD

Breakout Performer

Richie Anderson is a good player to have on your roster. If one of your starters gets nicked up or if you need a bye week replacement, Anderson can be trusted for an occasional spot start. He seems to get about 10 opportunities per game and makes the most of them. If Eddie George continues to disappoint, Bill Parcells might not have any choice but to increase Anderson’s workload.

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

DET

@CIN

PHI

@BAL

One Week Wonders: Tony Fisher and Lamont Jordan

WIDE RECEIVERS

Obvious acquisitions: Marcus Robinson, Andre Davis and Donald Driver

1. Brandon Lloyd, 49ers

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

93 yds.

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

The 49ers are one of those teams that spread the ball around so much that it’s tough to gauge who’s going to be the top receiver on any given week. Early on, it looked like Cedrick Wilson might be the go-to guy. Then Curtis Conway seemed as if he might emerge as a reliable fantasy threat. Now Brandon Lloyd has put together back-to-back solid performances. Acquire him this week. Prior to the season, most people felt Lloyd was the most promising receiver on San Francisco’s offense. If he ends up living up to those expectations, Lloyd could have a big impact for the rest of the season because the 49ers throw the ball more than any team in the NFL.

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

@CHI

SEA

CAR

@TAM


2. Nate Burleson, Vikings

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

134 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

The image of Randy Moss sprawled out on the turf and waving toward the medical staff caused many a fantasy owner to choke on their cheese puffs Sunday night. Vikings head coach Mike Tice has stated that Moss’ injury is slightly more severe than mild. He will be evaluated Friday. Regardless of whether Moss plays or doesn’t, Nate Burleson deserves a roster spot at this point. Minnesota’s offense is crazy good right now and MVP frontrunner Daunte Culpepper is spreading the ball around nicely. If Moss can’t go, Burleson becomes an instant starter.

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

TEN

NYG

@IND

@GB

DET


3. Anquan Boldin, Cardinals

Last Week’s Stats

INJ.

INJ.

INJ.

INJ.

INJ.

Breakout Performer

 

Last year’s rookie of the year is scheduled to make his debut in a couple weeks. If he’s available on your league’s waiver wire, now is the time to pick him up. Don’t expect Boldin to pick right up where he left off last season, but he should have a few nice games before the season is over.

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

@BUF

@MIA

NYG

@CAR


4. Bobby Engram, Seahawks

Last Week’s Stats

3 rec.

35 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Seattle starting wideout Koren Robinson will reportedly be suspended four games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. If those reports come to fruition, Bobby Engram will step into a starting role opposite Darrell Jackson. The loss of Robinson may actually end up being addition by subtraction because the enigmatic wideout has been dropping passes left and right. Look for Engram to average 70-80 yards per week with an occasional touchdown while Robinson is out. Jerry Rice will factor into the offense if he’s acquired, but I expect Engram will be the bigger benefactor of Robinson’s stupidity.

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

@ARZ

CAR

@SF

@STL

MIA


5. Jerome Pathon, Saints

Last Week’s Stats

4 rec.

92 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

The talking heads on the NFL pregame shows continue to say that the Saints are a hard team to figure out. I disagree. They’re not that good. Period. End of story. Enough said. One of the most frustrating players on the team is wide receiver Dante Stallworth, who continues to puzzle fantasy owners. Sunday night he checked in with four receptions for 34 yards. If he continues with his erratic play, Stallworth will likely find himself in a familiar place – head coach Jim Haslett’s doghouse. Stallworth’s demise would be a significant boost to Jerome Pathon’s fantasy value. Pathon, who missed time with a hamstring injury, has had several long receptions this season and offers owners plenty of upside.

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

@OAK

BYE

@SD

KC

DEN


6. Eric Parker, Chargers

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

76 yds.

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

San Diego ’s leading wideout Reche Caldwell was injured early in Sunday’s loss to the Falcons. He was seen on the sidelines on crutches. As of Monday, the extent of Caldwell’s injury was unknown. In his absence, Eric Parker stepped up and had himself a nice game. Caldwell has had a bit of a history with injuries; he missed seven games last season. If his injury turns out to be a sprain, Parker could be good for a couple games. If it turns out to be more serious, he could emerge as a great #4 WR.

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

@CAR

OAK

NO

BYE

@OAK


7. Ike Hilliard, Giants

Last Week’s Stats

BYE

BYE

BYE

BYE

BYE

Breakout Performer

 

Giants wideout Tim Carter was placed on injured reserve last week with a fractured hip socket. The primary beneficiary of Carter’s absence will likely be Ike Hilliard who was frequently over-shadowed by Carter during the first four weeks of the season. Look for the eight-year veteran to begin posting some decent stats starting this week against a Lions defense that was burned by the Packers for four passing scores Sunday. Other upcoming games against the NFC North could also bring big points for Hilliard.

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

DET

@MIN

CHI

@ARZ

ATL

One Week Wonders: Jabbar Gaffney, Dez White and Johnnie Morton

TIGHT ENDS

Obvious Acquisitions: Jerramy Stevens

1. Jermaine Wiggins, Vikings

Last Week’s Stats

5 rec.

56 yds.

2 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Wiggins fractured his wrist earlier this season, but made his return Sunday night in fine form. He found his way into the endzone twice and even managed a couple interesting touchdown celebrations. Minnesota’s passing game is surreal right now and they seem to use the tight end as a weapon every week. Wiggins could be the best tight end you’ll see on your waiver wire for the rest of the year. If you’re having any doubts about the guy you’re playing right now, consider investing a roster spot on him.

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

TEN

NYG

@IND

@GB

DET


2. Jeb Putzier, Broncos

Last Week’s Stats

3 rec.

52 yds.

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

If you can’t get your hands on Jermaine Wiggins, consider Denver tight end Jeb Putzier as an alternative. Putzier led all Broncos pass catchers with three receptions for 52 yards Sunday. He also scored a touchdown. On Monday night, Denver will face a Bengals defense that has given up some decent performances to tight ends, including a 93-yard effort to Miami’s Randy McMichael and a touchdown to Cleveland’s Aaron Shea last 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

 

@CIN

ATL

HOU

BYE

@NO

One Week Wonders: Dwayne Carswell and Aaron Shea

Defense / Special Teams

Obvious Acquisitions: None

1. St. Louis Rams

Last Week’s Stats

21 pts. allw.

1 INT

2 FR

2 sacks

1 TD

Breakout Performer

I’ve been a big proponent of acquiring whichever defense is facing the Dolphins for several weeks now. That strategy seems to be working well. Last week, Miami QB Jay Fiedler had an interception returned for a touchdown by Bills linebacker Takeo Spikes. In addition to making their share of mistakes, the Dolphins continue to struggle to put points on the scoreboard. If the Rams are available on your waiver wire, pick them up this week and count on an above average score from your defense.

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

@MIA

BYE

NE

SEA

@BUF


2. New Orleans Saints

Last Week’s Stats

38 pts. allw.

2 INTs

1 FR

2 sacks

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

If you can’t get the Rams defense this week, consider the Saints as Plan B. New Orleans has given up a lot of yards and points in recent weeks, but they should find success in Week 7 against the Raiders. Oakland only scored three points last week and QB Kerry Collins continues to throw interceptions with regularity. Look for the Saints to cause at least two turnovers and register a few sacks.

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

@OAK

BYE

@SD

KC

DEN

One Week Wonders: Green Bay Packers