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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

IDP Report - Week 9
Brent Clement
November 4, 2004

Interesting Tidbits

Seattle LB Chad Brown made his season debut this past weekend and posted 6 total tackles in his first game back. Brown will improve a Seahawk defense that has had trouble putting pressure on the QB since Grant Wistrom went down to injury.

With Dan Morgan possibly missing week 9 with a concussion, his backup Vinny Ciurciu is a great waiver wire pickup this week and a strong start in place of Morgan.. Ciurciuin just over a half last week, recorded 9 solo tackles and 3 assists. Those are Morgan like numbers.

Seattle LB Anthony Simmons has been practicing with the first string this week after missing the past 2 games and should be starting week 9. Simmons has been relatively quiet thus far, before getting hurt, as teams simply ran away from him and had a OL in his face on every running play that did go to his side of the field. Nobody will benefit more from LB Chad Browns return that Simmons who will have more room to roam with Brown causing havoc in the opposing teams offensive backfield

Who’s Hot

Defensive Linemen

PHI – Jevon Kearse – The Freak as he likes to call himself has been putting on quite a show the last several weeks. He had another 2 sack performance this past weekend, and has really picked up his play from earlier this season. Kearse is easily a strong start most weeks, but as long as he is producing 2 sacks a game, he is a must start.

CHI- Alex Brown – The former Gator and current Bear is teasing us yet again. Last year he had several nice weeks in a row early in the season only to fall off the map down the stretch, as the playoffs began. His value will not get much higher than it is right now and it’s a good time to sell high, before he falters again.

WAS – Cornelius Griffin – Griffin has been putting up strong numbers the past month. He has also crept into the top 5 at the DL position in most scoring leagues, virtually going unnoticed doing so. Griffin gets a ton of opportunities as the Redskins can’t sustain drives leaving their D on the field an abundance of plays late in the game. Griffin is definitely a good start most weeks, and is capable of posting the monster game as he did 2 weeks ago.

Linebackers

DET – Earl Holmes – Holmes last week had 8 solo tackles in the first half against the Cowboys. He finished the game with 11 and 4 assists. Holmes has recorded 26 solo tackles and 10 assists in his last 3 games. Those are eye opening numbers everyone should be aware of.

PIT – Joey Porter - For the Patriots to lose their first game in their last 22, it was going to take a special performance from the Steelers defense. Joey Porter stepped up to the challenge and posted his first 3 sack game this yr, including 5 solo tackles, 3 assists, 2 forced fumbles and a pass defense. Porter was in Brady’s grill all afternoon and was a huge reason the Steelers pulled of the upset.

SF – Derek Smith – Smith returning from injury picked up right where he left off. He posted 9 solo tackles and looked fresh after missing nearly a month of action. Smith is a great start each week and if healthy could mirror last weeks stats on a weekly basis.

Defensive Backs

NE – Rodney Harrison – Harrison is the #1 DB in the league by a mile, but he is putting up stats equal to the best Lbs in the league. In fact only Zach Thomas has more tackles on the year than Harrison to date. Rodney last week had an amazing 13 solo tackles and 8 assists in the contest with the Pittsburgh Steelers. That is mind boggling numbers from the All-Pro Safety.

CIN – Kevin Kaesviharn - Kevin has put up 3 monster games in a row and is free on most waiver wires. It would be a good idea to pick him up and ride him as long as teams throw his way. Last week Kevin posted 9 tackles and 1 assist and the 2 weeks prior to that he racked up a combined 14 solo tackles and 2 assists.

PHI – Brian Dawkins – Dawkins is a former stud who couldn’t stay healthy the past 2 seasons. When he is healthy the results speak for themselves. Dawkins has put up 2 strong games in a row, when his team needed him most. There are no signs of slowing down for this former All-Pro.

Who’s Not

Defensive Linemen

OAK – Tyler Brayton – Brayton was a huge surprise a yr ago and started this yr with a flurry as well. But he has literally faded since about week 3 on. He is rarely even involved in a play, and doesn’t look eager to stick his nose in the line of fire and hit someone. Brayton should be benched until he shows he is worthy of starting again.

MIA – Jason Taylor – The Jets ran the ball 35+ times and Taylor was in on only 2 tackles and didn’t get near Pennington all night. This type of performance is not what owners expected on Monday Night when the whole nation is watching.

Linebackers

HOU – Jay Foreman – Foreman this season is not the consistent producer he was a yr ago. He is too often late in getting to the play, and fellow LB Jamie Sharper is beating him to the punch on almost snap. Foreman is still a good start, but 2 weeks of below average play has to cause concern for Foreman owners.

NYJ – Eric Barton – Barton is a step behind rookie LB Jonathon Vilma on almost every down, and there isn’t a lot of scraps left when he gets there. Barton a yr ago was a strong start virtually every week. This season he is hit or miss on any given Sunday, or Monday night for that matter.

Defensive Backs

TEN –Lamont Thompson - Thompson was a hot waiver wire pickup last week, and has been producing solid stats the last couple of weeks. But last Sundays performance gave his owners a sense of uneasiness about starting him in the near future. Thompson owners will think twice about putting him back in their lineup until he can put up solid numbers again.

TEN – Tank Williams – Another Titan S who failed to show up last week. The Bengal’s ran the ball enough and threw enough underneath passes to give the Titan Safeties opportunities, but LB Keith Bullock seemed to be the only one to take advantage.

Key Injuries

Defensive Line

Adewale Ogunleye has returned to practice but its being reported he could be a dreaded game time decision for week 9.

Linebackers

Car LB Dan Morgan was on the receiving end of a concussion in Week 8. He is currently listed as questionable for Week 9.

Defensive Backs

Bronco’s Safety John Lynch is expected to miss 2-4 weeks with a stress fracture in his tailbone.

Patriots Corner Ty Law is expected to miss 4-6 weeks, for what the team is calling a broken bone in his left foot.

Start em

Sunday, Nov. 7

Arizona at Miami, 1:00 p.m.- DL Bert Berry, DB Adrian Wilson, LB Zach Thomas.

Dallas at Cincinnati, 1:00 p.m.- DB Roy Williams, DL Justin Smith, LB Brian Simmons.

Kansas City at Tampa Bay, 1:00 p.m.- LB Shawn Barber, DB Greg Wesley, LB Derrick Brooks, DB Ronde Barber.

N.Y. Jets at Buffalo, 1:00 p.m. - DL John Abraham, LB Jonathon Vilma, DL Aaron Schobel, LB London Fletcher.

Oakland at Carolina, 1:00 p.m. - LB Danny Clark, DB Ray Buchanan, DB Mike Minter, LB Dan Morgan (questionable).

Philadelphia at Pittsburgh, 1:00 p.m. - DB Brian Dawkins, DB Michael Lewis, LB James Farrior, DB Troy Polamalu.

Washington at Detroit, 1:00 p.m. - LB Antonio Pierce, DL Shaun Rogers, LB Earl Holmes, LB Teddy Lehman.

Chicago at N.Y. Giants, 4:05 p.m. -LB Brian Urlacher, DB Michael Green, DL Michael Strahan, DB Gibril Wilson.

New Orleans at San Diego, 4:05 p.m. - DL Charles Grant, DB Tebucky Jones, LB Donnie Edwards, DB Terrance Kiel.

Seattle at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m.- LB Anthony Simmons, LB Derek Smith, DB Tony Parrish.

Houston at Denver, 4:15 p.m. - LB Jamie Sharper, LB Jay Foreman, LB DJ Williams, LB Al Wilson.

New England at St. Louis, 4:15 p.m. - LB Tedy Bruschi, DB Rodney Harrison, DL Leonard Little, DB Adam Archuletta.

Cleveland at Baltimore, 8:30 p.m. - DL Kenard Lang, LB Andra Davis, LB Ray Lewis, DB Ed Reed,

Monday, Nov. 8

Minnesota at Indianapolis, 9:00 p.m. - DL Kevin Williams, LB Dontarrious Thomas, LB Cato June, LB David Thornton.

Open date: Atlanta, Green Bay, Jacksonville, Tennessee

Others to consider

Defensive Linemen
WAS - Cornelius Griffin
CAR - Mike Rucker
CAR - Julius Peppers
NYJ - Shaun Ellis
CHI - Alex Brown
TBB - Simeon Rice
PHI - Jevon Kearse
DET - James Hall
SEA - Chike Okeafor
BAL - Marques Douglas

Linebackers
PHI - Mark Simoneau
WAS - Marcus Washington
CHI - Lance Briggs
PIT - Joey Porter
NYJ - Eric Barton
STL - Tommy Polley
SDC - Steve Foley
OAK - Napolean Harris
MIA - Junior Seau
DAL - Dat Nguyen

Defensive Backs
NEP - Eugene Wilson
IND - Nick Harper
SEA - Ken Hamlin
OAK - Charles Woodson
DET - Chris Cash
MIN - Antoine Winfield
BUF - Terrance McGee
DEN - Kenoy Kennedy
OAK - Marques Anderson
BAL - Gary Baxter

Team Defense - Top 5 Plays of the Week

NY Giants vs. Chicago. Chicago had a hard time moving the ball on an average SF defense last week. This match up is a best bet this week.

Baltimore vs. Cleveland. The Browns average 2.5 turnovers a game on offense, and Baltimore will want to avenge an opening day loss to the Browns.

Arizona vs. Miami. I was wrong last week predicting Arizona would shut down the Bills. But this is a bounce back game for the Cardinal defense who have been very strong this season.

NY Jets vs. Buffalo. Buffalo has been terrible on offense before last weeks explosion. Buffalo will be hard pressed to score more than 10 pts on the Jets this week, and Bledsoe is sure to be sacked often.

Miami vs. Arizona. The Cardinals on offense stank up the joint last week in Anquan Boldins return. The Miami pass defense will give McNown fits and Zach Thomas and Co will shut down the running game.