fantasy football     JOIN THE HUDDLE    
HOME ARTICLES NEWS DRAFT GUIDE REGULAR SEASON STATISTICS NFL TEAMS MESSAGE BOARDS

FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Free Agent Forecast - Week 8
Paul Sandy
October 26, 2004

QUARTERBACKS

Obvious acquisitions: Byron Leftwich

1. Joey Harrington, Lions

Last Week’s Stats

18 comp.

22 att.

230 yds.

2 TDs

 

Breakout Performer

Harrington completed 80% of his passes Sunday, a career high. Even more impressive was that two of his four incomplete passes were thrown away on purpose. He brought his A-game. Look for more success this week against the Cowboys. Dallas can’t seem to stop anyone, which is amazing because this was the #1 rated defense a year ago. They’ve allowed two or more passing touchdowns each of the past two weeks. Harrington should match that and is a solid play in Week 8.

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

@DAL

WAS

@JAC

@MIN

IND


2. Drew Brees, Chargers

Last Week’s Stats

21 comp.

31 att.

196 yds.

0 TDs

 

Breakout Performer

 

Drew Brees has nine touchdown passes in 2004. Last year, he had 11 over the course of an entire season. He’s been recommended here before, but if he’s still available on your waiver wire, he’s a solid play in Week 8. He’ll face an Oakland Raiders defense that gives up about 26 points per game on average. The additions of Keenan McCardell and Bobby Shaw signal this team is gearing up for a playoff run. The Chargers are exhibiting a level of confidence that hasn’t been seen in San Diego in a long time. Brees should make use of his new targets this weekend and throw for 200 yards and a pair of TDs.

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

NO

BYE

@OAK

@KC


3. J.P. Losman, Bills

Last Week’s Stats

INJ

INJ

INJ

INJ

INJ

Breakout Performer

 

In dynasty leagues and those with 14+ teams, Bills rookie quarterback J.P. Losman may be worth an acquisition. The Bills have all but fallen out of the playoff race and QB Drew Bledsoe is playing like his best days are way, way behind him. Losman missed the first half of the season with a broken leg, but suited up for the first time this week as the team’s emergency QB. He’s expected to be 100% in a couple weeks. Look for him to earn his first start by Week 10 or 11.

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

NYJ

@NE

STL

@SEA

One Week Wonders: Jay Fiedler

RUNNING BACKS

Obvious acquisitions: Sammy Morris, William Green and Kevin Jones

1. Brad Hoover, Panthers

Last Week’s Stats

24 car.

99 yds.

2 rec.

6 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

Stephen Davis was held out of Sunday’s game against the Chargers. Brad Hoover filled in admirably, nearly crossing the century mark. Next week, the Panthers will travel to Seattle. If Davis sits again next week, owners who are in a bye week bind can feel reasonably comfortable using Hoover as a replacement. After establishing a reputation early on as one of the league’s tougher defenses, the Seahawks suddenly look vulnerable. They’ve allowed 100+ yard rushers each of the last two 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

@SEA

OAK

@SF

ARZ

TAM


2. Dorsey Levens, Eagles

Last Week’s Stats

7 car.

48 yds.

1 rec.

12 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

Eagles starting running back Brian Westbrook suffered a chest contusion Sunday. It is unclear at this point exactly how much time, if any, Westbrook will miss. A chest injury would seem to limit a running back more than other positions. Depending on the severity, don’t be surprised to see Westbrook on the sidelines for a couple games. Philly has one of the top scoring offenses in the NFL and that makes his likely replacement, Dorsey Levens, a worthy acquisition. Unfavorable match-ups in the coming weeks may limit his production, but he would have a good chance to score a TD on any opponent if he’s the 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

 

BAL

@PIT

@DAL

WAS

@NYG


3. Jesse Chatman, Chargers

Last Week’s Stats

8 car.

69 yds.

0 rec.

0 yds.

1 TD

Breakout Performer

LaDainian Tomlinson continues to battle a nagging groin injury and has been unable to finish each of the last three games. His backup, Jesse Chatman, has been abusing defenses whenever Tomlinson needs a rest. Chatman is averaging a robust 7.8 yards per carry this season. Until Tomlinson declares himself 100%, Chatman can be used for an occasional start. A soft upcoming schedule makes him a decent acquisition.

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

NO

BYE

@OAK

@KC


4. Jamel White, Buccaneers

Last Week’s Stats

4 car.

5 yds.

1 rec.

1 yd.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

Bruising fullback Mike Alstott suffered a knee sprain in Sunday’s win over the Bears and is expected to miss at least four weeks. Tampa’s backfield was already thin and now Jamel White may become an important player in the offense. Look for him to become the team’s third-down back and occasionally give starter Michael Pittman a breather. If Pittman goes down, White would be forced into the lead role.

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

KC

@ATL

SF

CAR


5. Reno Mahe, Eagles

Last Week’s Stats

0 car.

0 yds.

2 rec.

18 yds.

0 TDs

Breakout Performer

 

If Brian Westbrook misses any time, third-string RB Reno Mahe would likely split time with Dorsey Levens. The Eagles successfully used a backfield by committee approach last season with Westbrook, Duce Staley and Correll Buckhalter. The acronym RBBC causes many fantasy owners to wince, but both Levens and Mahe could post solid stats in this offense. Mahe may be the pass-catching back in the duo, a role that usually yields big points in Philly.

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

BAL

@PIT

@DAL

WAS

@NYG


6. Joey Harris, Panthers

Last Week’s Stats

DNP

DNP

DNP

DNP

DNP

Breakout Performer

 

Harris is purely a speculative pickup at this point. As the Carolina Panthers continue to fall out of playoff contention, they will begin looking ahead to next year. Harris, who was elevated off the practice squad when DeShaun Foster went down with an injury, figures to be part of those plans. Stephen Davis may not. Davis may no longer have it in him to withstand the pounding involved with carrying the ball 20-25 times in a game. Keep an eye on the undrafted rookie. He had a solid preseason and may get a few starts toward the end of 2004.

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

OAK

@SF

ARZ

TAM

One Week Wonders: BJ Sams

WIDE RECEIVERS

Obvious acquisitions: Keenan McCardell

1. Todd Pinkston, Eagles

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

100 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Terrell Owens continues to baffle opposing defenses. He seems to get better every week and it is forcing teams to double team him for much of the game. As opponents continue to roll coverage toward Owens, it should lead to more big days for Todd Pinkston. Pinkston posted his first 100-yard performance of the season on Sunday. Don’t forget this is a receiver who just two seasons ago caught 60 passes for nearly 800 yards and seven touchdowns. He could be a nice surprised during the second half of the season.

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

 

BAL

@PIT

@DAL

WAS

@NYG


2. Jerome Pathon, Saints

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

79 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Pathon started Sunday’s game over WR Donte Stallworth, who has been the target of much criticism lately due to dropped passes. The Saints average more than 240 passing yards per game, so if Pathon continues to start, he’ll be a valuable addition to any fantasy squad. In his last two games since coming back from a hamstring injury, Pathon has posted 10 receptions for 171 yards. Those aren’t “puff-out-your-chest” numbers, but they may be good enough for Pathon to make the cut as your number three or four wideout. If it weren’t for a Week 8 bye, Pathon, who was recommended last week, would rank higher on this list.

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

@SD

KC

DEN

@ATL


3. Quincy Morgan, Cowboys

Last Week’s Stats

4 rec.

76 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

Morgan, who Dallas acquired in a trade with Cleveland, played well in his first game with the Cowboys. Much of his success can be attributed to starter Terry Glenn getting injured midway through Sunday’s game with a foot sprain. Glenn is expected to miss at least two weeks, which makes Morgan an intriguing pickup. The Cowboys rank seventh in the NFL in passing yards per game (265.4), so Morgan should see plenty more opportunities in the next few weeks. Go ahead and start him against Detroit; the Lions defense ranks near the bottom of the NFL against the pass.

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

@CIN

PHI

@BAL

CHI


4. Derick Armstrong, Texans

Last Week’s Stats

BYE

BYE

BYE

BYE

BYE

Breakout Performer

 

The Houston Texans depth chart shows Derick Armstrong as a second-team wideout, but the boxscores suggest otherwise. In their last two games, Armstrong has factored heavily into Houston’s gameplan. He had 101 yards and a touchdown in Week 5. He tapered off a bit in Week 6, but QB David Carr still looked his way five times. Armstrong, a product of the Canadian Football League, should only get better in the offense. At 6-2, 206 lbs, he is a good-sized target and has excellent hands. If he’s still available, make him your fourth or fifth wideout.

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

 

JAC

@DEN

@IND

GB

TEN


5. Shaun McDonald, Rams

Last Week’s Stats

4 rec.

77 yds.

1 TD

 

 

Breakout Performer

It took awhile, but it looks like the Rams may finally have found a formidable replacement for Az-Zahir Hakim, who left the team via free agency a couple seasons ago. Shaun McDonald has three touchdowns in his last four games. He’s also posted two 70+ yard receiving games in the last two weeks. That’s enough production to earn a Free Agent Forecast recommendation. In addition to catching long passes, he returns punts for the Rams, so if your league rewards points for special teams production, he deserves extra consideration.

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

NE

SEA

@BUF

@GB

One Week Wonders: Reggie Swinton

TIGHT ENDS

Obvious Acquisitions: Jermaine Wiggins and Jason Witten

1. Ben Troupe, Titans

Last Week’s Stats

6 rec.

57 yds.

0 TDs

 

 

Breakout Performer

I recommended Troupe a couple weeks ago. It’s taken awhile for him to make an impact, but with Erron Kinney and Shad Meir injured, Troupe is finally getting an opportunity to show his stuff. I’ve watched both games that Billy Volek saw extensive action in this season. He throws the ball to his tight ends as much as any QB I’ve seen. Despite playing just half the game Sunday against the Vikings, Volek threw 10 passes to Troupe. In Week 4 against the Chargers, Volek threw 13 passes to his tight ends (including one for a TD). The moral of the story: Count on at least seven receptions from Troupe 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

CIN

BYE

CHI

@JAC

@HOU

One Week Wonders: Doug Jolley and Steve Heiden

Defense / Special Teams

Obvious Acquisitions: None

1. Arizona Cardinals

Last Week’s Stats

17 pts. allw.

4 INTs

0 FR

1 safety

1 sack

Breakout Performer

Many fantasy owners have a difficult time stomaching the idea of starting the Arizona Cardinals. However, a match-up this week against the Bills may be too difficult to resist. Check out Buffalo’s stats in Week 7: four interceptions, 1 fumble lost, four sacks, one defensive touchdown allowed and six points scored. Yikes. Granted, that was against the heralded Ravens defense, but QB Drew Bledsoe has been sacked a league-high 24 times. The Cardinals have shut down offensive powerhouses like the Rams and Seahawks this season. They should do the same versus the Bills.

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

@BUF

@MIA

NYG

@CAR

NYJ

One Week Wonders: New Orleans Saints